Homemade Juicy Juice: Juicers 101

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Sure, I juice! I juice everyday. For me, it’s not a fad, or jumping on some sort of band wagon. I’m not consciously detoxing and cleansing. I’m not a vegetarian or vegan. And I’m certainly not on a diet. Oh, contrary to the opinions of many ads out there, a glass of pure fresh fruit and veggie juice is definitely NOT a meal. Juicing provides a variety of nutrients from fruits and vegetables you wouldn’t normally eat in one sitting. The juice is an instant shot of micronutrients that flood your system. It doesn’t take the place of eating whole fruits and vegetables either. Juicers extract liquids from the fibrous material of raw produce, leaving behind much of the fiber, along with other vitamins your body still benefits from. Juicing is a much healthier option to buying concentrates and mainstream brand juices. The only real inconvenience, besides taking a little bit of time to juice, is refrigerator shelf life. Juice made from our masticating juicer, lasts only up to 24 hours since it begins losing its freshness and nutrients right away. Hand pressed citrus juice will last a few days in the fridge. I often store our juice in small glass milk jugs. Everyone has a few activities that get done everyday. For me, juicing is pretty much part of my no brainer daily routine.

Besides realizing the obvious health benefits of juicing, we initially invested in juicing machines for two reasons: we love juice and we have abundant harvests of fruits and vegetables on our property. Besides, a humongous bushel of kale is much easier for me to drink then to chomp on endlessly-yuck!. As I write, our prolific trees and plants are teeming with cucumbers, beets, carrots, green beans, cauliflower, zucchini, kale, blueberries, apples, oranges, tangerines, grapefruits, etcetera, etcetera- and many more are on the verge of producing. Juicing is just another great way of enjoying our produce throughout the day- it’s fresh, tastes amazing, and we can almost feel our body cells getting giddy with instant nutrient boosts.  However, as with any kind of juice, it should be drunk in moderation.  Although homemade fresh juices consists of the finest natural ingredients, they are also natural sugar highs!

Produce for juicing can easily be purchased as well- however, I recommend visiting a farmer’s market and finding the freshest, all natural, organic fruits and vegetables, or make friends with a neighbor who has a garden. You can, of course, buy fresh juice from posh little markets at the high average cost of $10 or more per 8 ounces. I recommend making your own juice.  It’s so easy to do, especially with the Omega J8006 Nutrition Center masticating Dual-stage Juicer Juice Extractor and New Star Foodservice Commercial Citrus Juicer.

Omega J8006 Nutrition Center masticating Dual-stage Juicer Juice Extractor

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The Omega is awesome! It’s super user friendly, easy to put together and take apart, and washes instantly in warm water and a little soap. Fruits and vegetables don’t need peeling, but should be cut up in chunks just small enough to fit down the chute. This retro looking little guy also has extra fittings for making sorbets, butters, baby food, and much more. Here’s a simple juice recipe I concoct regularly:

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Ingredients:

  • apples
  • beets
  • carrots
  • kale
  • ginger

*The amounts depend on taste and availability.  For about 2 1/2 pints, I use 4 large apples, 1 very large beet, 3 carrots, an inch of ginger root, and as much kale I can squeeze two hands around.  The more apples, the sweeter.

Method:

Scrub and wash everything thoroughly.

Remove the beet greens and use them for another recipe, or throw them in the juice as well.

I remove the large stalks from the base of the kale and throw them in the compost.  The bottoms that I pull from the plant are a little too bitter.  No need to do this with store bought kale.

The kale, carrots, and ginger will most likely fit lengthwise down the chute.

Cut the apples and beet(s) into chunks or slices that will fit down the chute.

Turn the juicer on and alternate ingredients when dropping and pressing through the chute.

 

The finished juice will have a beautiful nutrient rich tie-dye effect (pictured left below).  The waste is ideal compost (right).

Enjoy fresh, bottle up for later, and/or take to work for a healthy, energizing, hydrating snack!  Fresh juices can also be poured into ice cube trays and frozen for future enjoyment.

One of my all time, extremely simple recipes:  Just pure carrot juice.  While out of town and away from my juicer, I paid $5 for barely 4 ounces of fresh carrot juice!

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New Star Foodservice 46878 Commercial Citrus Juicer

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This contraption is the most simple, useful, convenient tool in my entire kitchen!  We have an abundance of grapefruits, lemons, oranges, tangerines, and limes throughout most of the year.  Squeezing for fresh juices and recipes, or freezing and storing for later, has never been so much easier, and we’re sure to keep much of our citrus from going to waste.

 

If you ever thought about concocting your own juice, try it- in my opinion, it’s worth it.  If you continue to buy juice at the store- I promise, I won’t judge you!

 

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