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Friday, January 27, 2012

Spicy "Tuna" Rolls and Kale Salad

So this week was all about cooking for me. I was addicted to vegan, vegetarian and healthy living blogs looking for the perfect dish. I made this dinner earlier in the week from Detoxinista and I was blow away with how refreshing and delicious it tasted. It would also make the perfect appetizer for any dinner party.

  1. Roast Peppers (cut off the 4 sides of a pepper and place cut side down on a baking sheet lined with alumium foil. Broil for 10 minutes then immediately place in a large zip lock bag for 20 minutes. Once the peppers are cooled, and the skins have been easily removed, slice the peppers into long strips, and toss them with a bit of Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce. These will become your “spicy tuna” slices!
  2. Prepare your sushi “rice.” The recipe called for Jicama but I choose to use a Turnip which turned out great! Simply peel it, chop it, and pulse it in a food processor. Then transfer to a thin towel, and squeeze all the moisture out.
  3. Thinnly slice your choice of vegetable fillings- I used cucumber, carrots and avocado– but you can use whatever you like. 
  4.  Now its time to roll. Using Toasted Nori make sure the lines are vertical when you place them on your sushi rolling mat. Then add your rice, filling the bottom third of the sheet.Followed by your sliced veggies of choice and "tuna", keeping them in the middle of the rice.
  5. Now begin to roll, starting from the bottom edge where your rice and veggies are, and tightly roll away from yourself, making sure the edges get tucked evenly into the roll. Roll the nori into a long cigar-like shape, leaving a bit of an edge at the end.Then dip your finger in water, to moisten the end, and roll up the rest! The moistened edge will help “seal” the roll.
  6. Using a very sharp knife, gently cut the roll into 8 even pieces.

Massaged Kale Salad- quick mix of avocado, fresh ginger and garlic, Nama Shoyu (soy sauce), lemon juice, and scallions, then massaged it all in so that the kale would wilt a bit.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Pancakes with out the "cake" part.

My new breakfast addiction has been these incredibly simple grain free pancakes, recipe courtesy of Detoxinista. They take only a few minutes to prep and then off to the oven they go! This is also a great recipe if you are following the Paleo Diet.

Serves 1
  • 1 large banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1 TB of nut butter (I have used peanut butter and almond butter)
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking pan with parchment paper
  2. Mash banana in a bowl until pureed
  3. Add egg, baking soda and nut butter- mix together
  4. Spoon on to parchment paper to form 4 pancakes (about 2 large spoonfuls for each)
  5. Bake 15 minutes and enjoy!
Feel free to top with a little maple syrup or fresh fruit.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Juice vs. Blending- Which is right for you?

Recipes for green juices and smoothies are popping up all over the place and these beverages are slowly becoming a more mainstream approach to healthy eating and detoxing. One thing is for sure – green juices and smoothies are good for you. But is one better than the other? Here is a short comparison to help you learn the ins-and-outs of green beverages. Hopefully this will help you pick which is right for you!

Green Juice
What you need: Juicer, 1 to 2 pounds of your favorite green vegetables

Advantages: Juicing is great because it extracts all of the water and nutrients from vegetables, leaving behind only the plant fibers. This means your body is better able to absorb the nutrients without having to digest the dense bulk of the plant. Plus, you can fit an incredible quantity of vegetables into a single glass of green juice, leaving you with simple, smooth and delicious drink that packs an incredible nutritional punch!

Disadvantages: Juicers can be very expensive and hard to take care of. They need to be thoroughly cleaned after every use to prevent rusting. Stocking enough fresh, organic vegetables to make daily juices can also be somewhat expensive. Although they are very high in nutrients and vitamins, juices can’t keep you full for long because your body processes the liquid so quickly. Finally, it’s worth noting that though green juices typically are usually low in sugar, several store bought juices can have a very high glycemic load and may cause blood sugar imbalances.

Try this recipe: Green Juice

Green Smoothie
What you need: Blender, ½ to 1 pound of your favorite green vegetables, 1 cup of ice.

Advantages: The biggest advantage to making smoothies is that the only equipment you need is relatively inexpensive – a blender. Smoothies also tend to be a little bit more filling since the plant fibers are present (but still easy to digest, compared to raw whole vegetables.)

Disadvantages: Compared to digesting juice, your body will have to work a bit harder to digest a smoothie and absorb the nutrients. Also, because it’s difficult to pack in the same volume of vegetables into a blender, your smoothie won’t be as nutrient-dense as your green juice. Using a high quality blender, such as a Vitamix, will lead to smoother, more enjoyable smoothies, but the price is comparable to a juicer.

Try this recipe: Green Monster Smoothie

The bottom line is when it comes to green beverages, whether you prefer smoothies or juices, it’s hard to go wrong. Just pick your favorite vegetables, and blend or juice away. Your body will thank you!

Article writen by Integrative Nutrition

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

20 Healthiest Foods under $1

Here is a great article from State Gardienz that I wanted to share. So many of us think "healthy eating" is more expensive but if you do a little pre planning you can find some great deals!

Food prices are climbing, and some might be looking to fast foods and packaged foods for their cheap bites. But low cost doesn’t have to mean low quality. In fact, some of the most inexpensive things you can buy are the best things for you. At the grocery store, getting the most nutrition for the least amount of money means hanging out on the peripheries—near the fruits and veggies, the meat and dairy, and the bulk grains—while avoiding the expensive packaged interior. By doing so, not only will your kitchen be stocked with excellent foods, your wallet won’t be empty.

1. Oats
High in fiber and complex carbohydrates, oats have also been shown to lower cholesterol. And they sure are cheap—a dollar will buy you more than a week’s worth of hearty breakfasts.

Serving suggestions: Sprinkle with nuts and fruit in the morning, make oatmeal cookies for dessert.

2. Eggs
You can get about a half dozen of eggs for a dollar, making them one of the cheapest and most versatile sources of protein. They are also a good source of the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which may ward off age-related eye problems.

Serving suggestions: Huevos rancheros for breakfast, egg salad sandwiches for lunch, and frittatas for dinner.

3. Kale
This dark, leafy green is loaded with vitamin C, carotenoids, and calcium. Like most greens, it is usually a dollar a bunch.

Serving suggestions: Chop up some kale and add to your favorite stir-fry; try German-Style Kale or traditional Irish Colcannon.

4. Potatoes
Because we often see potatoes at their unhealthiest—as fries or chips—we don’t think of them as nutritious, but they definitely are. Eaten with the skin on, potatoes contain almost half a day’s worth of Vitamin C, and are a good source of potassium. If you opt for sweet potatoes or yams, you’ll also get a good wallop of beta carotene. Plus, they’re dirt cheap and have almost endless culinary possibilities.

Serving suggestions: In the a.m., try Easy Breakfast Potatoes; for lunch, make potato salad; for dinner, have them with sour cream and chives.

5. Apples
I’m fond of apples because they’re inexpensive, easy to find, come in portion-controlled packaging, and taste good. They are a good source of pectin—a fiber that may help reduce cholesterol—and they have the antioxidant Vitamin C, which keeps your blood vessels healthy.

Serving suggestions: Plain; as applesauce; or in baked goods like Pumpkin-Apple Breakfast Bread.

6. Nuts
Though nuts have a high fat content, they’re packed with the good-for-you fats—unsaturated and monounsaturated. They’re also good sources of essential fatty acids, Vitamin E, and protein. And because they’re so nutrient-dense, you only need to eat a little to get the nutritional benefits. Although some nuts, like pecans and macadamias, can be costly, peanuts, walnuts, and almonds, especially when bought in the shell, are low in cost.

Serving suggestions: Raw; roasted and salted; sprinkled in salads.

7. Bananas
At a local Trader Joe’s, I found bananas for about 19¢ apiece; a dollar gets you a banana a day for the workweek. High in potassium and fiber (9 grams for one), bananas are a no-brainer when it comes to eating your five a day quotient of fruits and veggies.

Serving suggestions: In smoothies, by themselves, in cereal and yogurt.

8. Garbanzo Beans
With beans, you’re getting your money’s worth and then some. Not only are they a great source of protein and fiber, but ’bonzos are also high in fiber, iron, folate, and manganese, and may help reduce cholesterol levels. And if you don’t like one type, try another—black, lima, lentils … the varieties are endless. Though they require soaking and cooking, the most inexpensive way to purchase these beans is in dried form; a precooked can will still only run you around a buck.

Serving suggestions: In salads, curries, and Orange Hummus.

9. Broccoli
Broccoli contains tons of nice nutrients—calcium, vitamins A and C, potassium, folate, and fiber. As if that isn’t enough, broccoli is also packed with phytonutrients, compounds that may help prevent heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. Plus, it’s low in calories and cost.

Serving suggestions: Throw it in salads, stir fries, or served as an accompaniment to meat in this Steamed Ginger Chicken with Asian Greens recipe.

10. Watermelon
Though you may not be able to buy an entire watermelon for a dollar, your per serving cost isn’t more than a few dimes. This summertime fruit is over 90 percent water, making it an easy way to hydrate, and gives a healthy does of Vitamin C, potassium, and lycopene, an antioxidant that may ward off cancer.

Serving suggestions: Freeze chunks for popsicles; eat straight from the rind; squeeze to make watermelon margaritas (may negate the hydrating effect!).

11. Wild Rice
It won’t cost you much more than white rice, but wild rice is much better for you. Low in fat and high in protein and fiber, this gluten-free rice is a great source of complex carbohydrates. It packs a powerful potassium punch and is loaded with B vitamins. Plus, it has a nutty, robust flavor.

Serving suggestions: Mix with nuts and veggies for a cold rice salad; blend with brown rice for a side dish.

12. Beets
Beets are my kind of vegetable—their natural sugars make them sweet to the palate while their rich flavor and color make them nutritious for the body. They’re powerhouses of folate, iron, and antioxidants.

Serving suggestions: Shred into salads, slice with goat cheese. If you buy your beets with the greens on, you can braise them in olive oil like you would other greens.

13. Butternut Squash
This beautiful gourd swings both ways: sometimes savory, sometimes sweet. However you prepare the butternut, it will not only add color and texture, but also five grams of fiber per half cup and chunks and chunks of Vitamin A and C. When in season, butternut squash and related gourds are usually less than a dollar a pound.

Serving suggestions: Try Pear and Squash Bruschetta; cook and dot with butter and salt.

14. Whole Grain Pasta
In the days of Atkins, pasta was wrongly convicted, for there is nothing harmful about a complex carbohydrate source that is high in protein and B vitamins. Plus, it’s one of the cheapest staples you can buy.

Serving suggestions: Mix clams and white wine with linguine; top orzo with tomatoes and garlic; eat cold Farfalle Salad on a picnic.

15. Sardines
As a kid, I used to hate it when my dad would order sardines on our communal pizzas, but since then I’ve acquired a taste for them. Because not everyone has, you can still get a can of sardines for relatively cheap. And the little fish come with big benefits: calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and B vitamins. And, because they’re low on the food chain, they don’t accumulate mercury.

Serving suggestions: Mash them with parsley, lemon juice, and olive oil for a spread; eat them plain on crackers; enjoy as a pizza topping (adults only).

16. Spinach
Spinach is perhaps one of the best green leafies out there—it has lots of Vitamin C, iron, and trace minerals. Plus, you can usually find it year round for less than a dollar.

Serving suggestions: Sautéed with eggs, as a salad, or a Spinach Frittata.

17. Tofu
Not just for vegetarians anymore, tofu is an inexpensive protein source that can be used in both savory and sweet recipes. It’s high in B vitamins and iron, but low in fat and sodium, making it a healthful addition to many dishes.

Serving suggestions: Use silken varieties in Tofu Cheesecake; add to smoothies for a protein boost; cube and marinate for barbecue kebobs.

18. Lowfat Milk or Almond Milk
Yes, the price of a gallon of milk is rising, but per serving, it’s still under a dollar; single serving milk products, like yogurt, are usually less than a dollar, too. Plus, you’ll get a lot of benefit for a small investment.
Serving suggestions: In smoothies, hot chocolate, or coffee; milk products like low fat cottage cheese and yogurt.

19. Pumpkin Seeds
When it’s time to carve your pumpkin this October, don’t shovel those seeds into the trash—they’re a goldmine of magnesium, protein, and trace minerals. Plus, they come free with the purchase of a pumpkin.

Serving suggestions: Salt, roast, and eat plain; toss in salads.

20. Coffee or Tea

Although that bag of 99¢ Cheetos may look like a bargain, knowing that you’re not getting much in the way of nutrition or sustenance makes it seem less like a deal and more like a dupe. Choosing one of these twenty items, or the countless number of similarly nutritious ones, might just stretch that dollar from a snack into a meal.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Exercise Finder

I know we all have a spot on our body that we would like to tweak or slightly improve. Here is a great website that allows you to click on any body part you and it gives you recommend exercises to tone that area. The best part is you can do everything at home and don't need a gym membership.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Cooking website for those with allergies

This is an incredible site that pulls together all recipe websites and allows you to browse by ingredient, diet, allergy etc. If you know someone with allergies please share this site, its amazing!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Healthy Rice Pudding

If you love rice pudding or are looking for a new healthier dessert option here is a great recipe my mom and I came up with over the holiday. My brother has so may food allergies we made this version for him, but I wound up liking it more than the original. Its not a creamy as traditional rice pudding but also a lot less heavy on the belly.

  • 1 cup water + 1/2 cup for raisins
  • heaping 1/4 cup of golden raisins (you can use any type)
  • few dashes of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup of arborio rice (this type of rice is important)
  • 2 cups of original Almond Milk (I used 60 calorie Almond Breeze)
  • 1/2 TB earth balance butter spread
  • 4.5 TB sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Pour 1/2 cup boiling water over raisins until they plump up (you can do this while the rice is cooking), then drain
  2. Bring water, salt and earth balance to a boil in a medium pan. Add rice and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Shake the pan occasionally and cook until the rice has absorbed the water but is still al dente, about 15 mins.
  3. Bring almond milk, sugar, vanilla and a few dashes of cinnamon to a simmer in a separate saucepan. Add the cooked rice and cook at a simmer over medium-low heat until the rice absorbs most of the almond milk. About 10-15 minutes.
  4. Transfer pudding to a large bowl and mix in the plumped raisins- cool to room temperature and then place in the frig to cool a little more and set.
  5. Serve in a martini glass topped with mixed berries

adapted from Dave Lieberman's arborio rice pudding recipe

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


I can't believe I never wrote about this product before. Mary's Gone Crackers are one of my favorite go to crunchy snacks. The company uses gluten free, organic and non-GMO whole food ingredients plus this cracker is also vegan.  This little snack packs a blend of whole ancient grains such as quinoa, sesame seeds, rice and flaxseeds which allows the perfect texture for spreads or dipping.

You can find variety of flavors at many grocery stores so make sure to look for them on your next visit.
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