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Chlorella

  • Immunity Boosting Green Juice

     

    Good-Morning-Green-Juice-edited

    Notes from the Rainforest Foods kitchen - an antioxidant-rich juice to help you through the day.

    The arrival of winter brings with it the troublesome cold and flu season. Superfoods are a natural way to increase your intake of essential vitamins and minerals, many of which can help to boost the immune system.  The Chlorella and Spirulina in our green juice contain high levels of iron, which helps to support the immune system. Chlorella also contains high levels of vitamin B12, which also helps to support immunity.

    It is a good idea to underpin your diet with a broad-spectrum superfood. This is the perfectly reasonable theory behind multivitamins, after all. Raw leafy greens contain a wide selection of vitamins and minerals, and in this zesty, tasty juice they are reinforced by the comprehensive nutrients of the algae. Ginger and citrus fruit add both antioxidants and flavour.

     

    A large handful of leafy greens, such as kale, spinach and lettuce

    Half a cucumber

    The flesh of a grapefruit

    Half a lemon, including the rind

    A 2cm cube of fresh root ginger

    A 2cm cube of turmuric root. If not available,1tsp turmuric powder

    A handful of mint leaves

    1tsp Rainforest Foods Spirulina powder

    1tsp Rainforest Foods Chlorella powder

     

    Put the leafy greens and mint through a juicer. Then juice the cucumber, ginger and turmuric if using it in root form. Lastly, juice the grapefruit and lemon.

    Stir the powders well into the juice, and serve.

  • Rainforest Foods Nutty Summer Salad

    Nutty Salad

    Notes from the Rainforest Foods kitchen: a tangy, refreshing raw salad for hot, sunny days.

    When the sun comes out, our appetites tend to react instantly. Suddenly the heavier foods we crave during cold weather fade in appeal. Our thoughts turn to the flavours of fresh vegetables, the herbs that have come into season and the sharp tang of citrus fruit. The salad season is upon us.

    This salad is a nutritious blend of raw vegetables and a rich-yet-zesty dressing. Combining nut butter and Chlorella, the dressing is in itself a wide-spectrum food. It could also serve as a sauce, in which to toss cooked beans, pasta or potatoes.

    Serves 4

    Salad

    4 raw carrots, grated

    3 raw beetroot, grated

    2 raw courgettes, grated

    a bag of bean sprouts

    a large handful of cherry tomatoes, cut in half

    a large handful each of fresh coriander, mint and basil

    2 handfuls of podded and peeled broad beans

    Sauce

    150g crunchy nut butter

    4 tbsp. lime juice, plus the zest of the limes squeezed to produce it

    1 tbsp. Rainforest Foods Chlorella powder

    2 tbsp. clear honey

    2 tbsp. tamari or soy sauce

    a clove of garlic, peeled and grated

    a small red chilli, very finely chopped

    salt and pepper to season

    In a large bowl, mix all the sauce ingredients together. Add a little water to thin the sauce.

    Toss in the salad ingredients and mix until they are all coated in the sauce.

  • Rainforest Foods Lime Mousse - A Nutritious Dessert

    Radiant Lime Mousse

    Notes from the Rainforest Foods kitchen: a winning way with Chlorella

    While it is increasingly popular, the broad-spectrum superfood Chlorella is usually regarded as a savoury rather than a sweet ingredient. This is unsurprising – being an algae, its flavour does tend towards the former. The Rainforest Foods kitchen is the scene of frequent experiments with our algae products, and here we have succeeded in creating a dessert that is as delicious as it is nutritious.

    The key flavour in this recipe is lime, to whose citrus sharpness is added the richness of coconut oil and avocado. Sweetness can come from one of several sources, such as maple syrup or agave. We chose to use a good local honey.

    Serves 4

    3 ripe avocadoes
    Juice and zest of 3 limes
    60g/2.5oz melted coconut oil
    several drops of vanilla extract
    3 tbsp. of a sweetener of your choice.
    2 tsp. Rainforest Foods Chlorella powder

    Melt the coconut oil, either in a warm place or in a bowl set on a pan of simmering water.

    Combine the avocados and the melted coconut oil in a blender. Make sure all the lumps are gone from the avocado before adding the rest of the ingredients. Blend until smooth.

    While this is a smooth mousse, you could add a little texture if you prefer. To do this simply put in a few spoonfuls of desiccated coconut.

    Serve in bowls or glasses. To add another flavour and extra colour, top off with a few berries.

  • Tasting Spirulina and Chlorella with Pineapple fruit

    Notes from the Rainforest Foods kitchen: Spirulina and Chlorella: Pineapple’s perfect partners

    The Rainforest Foods kitchen has begun a series of experiments recently, into interesting ways of using our algae products, Spirulina and Chlorella. We produce them separately and mixed together, in both tablet and capsule form. But we also sell them as powders. Western diets feature very few algaes, despite their exceptional nutritional value, so general kitchen practice employing them is rare. This is a shame, because both Spirulina powder and Chorella powder are very comprehensive foods. They are rich in protein, give us a wide spread of vitamins and contain many minerals.

    What focussed our attention on the algaes was the chance discovery of the recipe for a Spirulina and Pineapple smoothie. This chimed with us because for several days a Pineapple had been sitting in the fruit bowl uneaten, after we bought it on offer in a local shop. Would Pineapple sit well with Spirulina? we wondered. And what about Chlorella? A tasting was called for.

    Pineapple is a fine food in its own right. It provides plentiful dietary fibre, and is notably rich in Vitamin C and Manganese, among a good spectrum of vitamins and minerals. We cut the rind from the Pineapple and took off a slice of the flesh. Our experiment was simple, involving chunks of Pineapple on a plate, plus some Spirulina and Chlorella. We dipped chunks into the powdered product, before eating.

    Smeared in Spirulina powder, Pineapple tastes very good. The Spirulina seems to soften the slightly acidic nature of the fruit, as well as giving it a nutty undertone.

    A dash of Chlorella powder has a different effect on Pineapple. It almost enhances the sweetness. The fairly distinctive taste of Chlorella on its own disappears, to let a new, very fruity taste come to the fore.

    We offer Spirulina and Chlorella mixed together in capsule form, so it seemed logical to combine the two powders and dab a chunk of Pineapple into the mixture. This was less successful. The two transformative effects tended to fight each other, rather than working with the flavours in the fruit.

    We discovered that there is more to this phenomenon than the simple combination of two foods. It is also a matter of proportion. We made a pair of small, simple smoothies with two slices of Pineapple and two teaspoons of – in turn – Spirulina powder and Chlorella powder. Neither of these was very successful, as they contained too much algae for the volume of fruit. There simply wasn’t enough fruit to have its flavours enhanced by the combination of ingredients.

    Our experiments will continue, but initial findings are encouraging. From what we have tasted so far, a fruit salad of Pineapple with a light dusting of either Spirulina or Chlorella will prove a lovely, sweet, light and nutritious dessert.

  • Chlorella and Spirulina

    Here at Rainforest foods we stock the algae Chlorella and Spirulina in capsule, tablet and powder form. The first two of these are simply the latter contained in plant-cellulose capsules or compressed into tablets, and are taken as supplements. By contrast, spirulina powder or chlorella powder can be added to foods or drinks, and ingested. Mixing a powder with water or fruit juice is a common way of taking a product such as these, so we decided to find out how the different methods contrast.

    We mixed a teaspoon of Chlorella with a glass of water, and did the same with Spirulina. For people new to Chlorella and Spirulina the taste in water is unfamiliar, with a strongly algal overtone. This is a drink to be taken for its nutrition rather than its taste.

    A better combination, however, is Chlorella or Spirulina in apple juice. This works with the algal tone, adding freshness and sweetness. This, by contrast, is a drink rather than a supplement in a transport medium.

  • Chlorella Vulgaris

    Are Chlorella Vulgaris and Yaeyama Chlorella, one and the same?

    While chlorella is a well known nutritional supplement in Japan and many countries in South East Asia, it is still relatively unknown in Europe, where there is a degree of confusion over the different types of chlorella that are available.  In fact, this confusion has been shared by consumers and scientists alike in the past.  This is due to the similarity in the different strains of chlorella which has led to problems classifying them.  Classification is normally done on the basis of cell size, cell shape, biochemical and physiological characteristics.  However, as these factors aren't consistent across members of the same chlorella species, it is often difficult to know exactly which species of chlorella a sample is.  There are in fact over 100 types of chlorella, so the common perception that chlorella is only available as Chlorella Vulgaris and Chlorella Pyrenoidosa is a gross over-simplification.  In fact, some chlorella researchers have even removed Chlorella Pyrenoidosa as a classification, arguing that this particular strain of chlorella is simply a collection of different types of chlorella that have been misclassified and subsequently classified as other non-chlorella species.

    Yaeyama Chlorella is a type of chlorella vulgaris grown in a specific geographical location which has become renowned for the excellent chlorella that is grown there, in much the same way that Parma is famed for its ham and Camembert for its cheese.  What makes the Yaeyama version of chlorella vulgaris so unique are the production methods used to process the chlorella and the quality of the nutrients and water used to grow it.  This has led to Yaeyama Chlorella becoming one of the most popular varieties of chlorella in Japan.

  • Japanese Chlorella

    How do they make Yaeyama Chlorella?

    Yaeyama chlorella is manufactured in Ishigaki Island off the coast of Japan by Yaeyama Shokusan Co.  The production process is composed of several stages which transform the starting material (microalgae strain) to the product that most of us recognise as chlorella.

    The first stage involves cultivating the yaeyama chlorella strain which acts as the raw material in the production process.  This is done indoors in laboratory conditions using seed fermentation equipment.  A small amount of the strain is added and allowed to grow/ferment.

    The second stage is undertaken outdoors in spherical cultivation pools which use fresh water and the power of the sun (via photosynthesis) to enable the strain developed in stage 1, to grow and to enhance its nutrient profile.  These pools are approximately 50 metres in diameter and relatively shallow.  They also have a rotating paddle which is used to mix and aerate the solution.

    Following this stage, the solution containing the yaeyama chlorella and water is piped back into the laboratory where the chlorella is washed using fresh water and then separated from the solution.  The separation process is carried out in an Alfa Laval separator using centrifugal force.

    The resulting mixture is then cooled in preparation for blanching; a process that both sterilises the chlorella and helps crack the cell walls.  Chlorella has tough, fibrous cell walls that need to be cracked/broken to allow the maximum amount of nutrients to be made available for absorption.

    The final production stage involves drying the mixture with high powered industrial jet sprays.  These operate at a low temperature to prevent heat-related nutrient degradation.  This process not only dries the chlorella but it also further cracks the cell walls.

    Finally, the chlorella is quality checked and manufactured into chlorella tablets or packaged as yaeyama chlorella powder.

    For further information on the company that manufactures yaeyama chlorella, click here.

  • Chlorophyll: nature’s detoxifier

    There is proven scientific evidence to support the highly beneficial effects of including chlorophyll in your diet. This highly potent molecule can help blood flow and digestion, detoxify the body, and even lower rates of colon cancer if taken in high enough quantities. Both wheatgrass and barley grass are a great source of chlorophyll and an easy way to supplement your diet with nature’s very own detoxifier.

    Chlorophyll, the basis of all plant life, is hugely beneficial to humans too. It plays a key role in detoxifying the liver (where blood is purified) and helps to stimulate hemoglobin production which in turn helps carry oxygen through the bloodstream. As it helps to reduce blood sugar problems, chlorophyll can help to control diabetes and aid weight loss. Chlorophyll is also anti-bacterial, limiting the development of unhealthy bacteria in the body. There’s even scientific evidence that chlorophyll strengthens the body’s cells which can help protect against carcinogens; in fact medical journals claim that chlorophyll is more effective in protecting against cancer than beta-carotene and vitamins A, C and E.

    There are high levels of chlorophyll found in both wheat grass and barley grass. In fact, wheatgrass is mostly made up of chlorophyll (about 70%). The cleansing and detoxifying properties of barley grass are also largely related to its abundant chlorophyll content. Supplementing your diet with either – or both – of these ‘superfoods’ is by far the most effective way of harnessing the impressive powers of chlorophyll. And it couldn’t be simpler; either take it as a shot of juice, mix barley grass or wheat grass powder in water or fruit juice or take a wheatgrass or barley grass capsule daily.

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