Cilantro Chili-Lime Prawns

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I made cilantro chili – lime prawns yesterday for a friends BBQ. I feel like I always try to think outside of the box when bringing things to parties mostly so people can try new things, but also because the regular stuff like potato salad, fruit salad and whatever else can often be boring. This recipe was really easy and fast. I am always browsing the internet for new recipes and am very glad I stumbled upon this one. One thing I want to say- is that just because there is a recipe doesn’t mean you can’t change a few things here and there.

What you’ll need for this:

  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest ( I didn’t have a zester so I excluded)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh lime juice (make sure the limes you choose are squishy)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 jalapeno chili (minced)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 1/2 pounds medium shrimp in shell ( I picked up already shelled but raw shrimp from Whole Foods)

Directions:

Marinate the shrimp. In a medium bowl, stir together lime zest, olive oil, soy, jalapeno, cilantro, garlic, sugar, chili powder, and cayenne. Peel the shrimp, leaving on tails.

Rinse, and then pat dry with paper towels. Put the shrimp in a large zipper bag, pour the marinade over, close the bag, pushing out any air and rub the marinade into the shrimp. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. ( I refrigerated for about 2 hours until we were ready to BBQ).

Preheat grill to medium-high. You can skewer the kabob, or if you don’t have kabob sticks, simply stick the shrimp w/ marinade in foil and close tight. Place on grill and wait about 6 -7 minutes or until finished cooking. Prawns cook pretty fast, so keep an eye on these bad boys.

For the Quinoa- Mango Salad:

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  • 1 cup quinoa or couscous
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1/2 bell pepper
  • 1 mango
  • 1 tablespoons chopped (italian) parsley leaves
  • chicken stock (optional) you can cook the quinoa in this for more flavor- I did not.
  • 1/4 red onion
  • 1/2 jalapeno
  • 1 lime

Directions:

Cook the quinoa as you would rice. for 1 cup quinoa use 2 cups water or stock. Set aside when done.

In a separate pan, saute parsley, jalapeno, bell pepper and zucchini with olive oil. I don’t like to cook my veggies all the way through for quinoa salad because I like the extra crunch. When veggies are near done, add red onion and mango in with veggies just to give a little warm up ( 2 minutes max). Add all ingredients together with quinoa. I like to add a little more olive oil, salt, pepper and and juice from lime to add flavor to salad. Top with prawns and you are done!

Add some corn tortillas and this is great for tacos! Enjoy!

Weekend Glimpse.

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What a great weekend. I hit up the farmers market yesterday with my niece per usual and to my luck scored with prices. I went a little later (12:30 ish) and got everything for $1 a pound! That is a deal if I ever heard of one. Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, carrots, plums and beets for under $10! I made an amazing Sunday dinner for some friends including halibut with fresh herbs, baked Brussels sprouts, and a fig recipe that I will share tomorrow. I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend and a great week ahead!

Watermelon + Feta + Mint Salad.

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{What you’ll need}

-Watermelon
-Feta
-Chopped spinach
-Chopped mint
-Sliced red onion
-Olive oil/ red or balsamic vinegar (I like both)

This Salad is SO easy, fast and refreshing. I recently bought a watermelon last week and little did I know it was enough watermelon to feed a family of five. No joke! After eating the watermelon as is I had to become a little creative. Trust me when I say this is the perfect salad to bring to a summer BBQ. Mix all the ingredients and add salt/pepper as needed.

Enjoy!

NYC Recap.

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IMG_2497First day back from NYC and I already can’t wait to get back there. Other than the fact that I was attacked by the first allergies in this history of my life the trip was amazing. Friday night Yahoo kicked off their “On the Road” tour and thanks to my cousin  I was able to see John Legend perform. I have seen him once before the last time I was in New York during an outdoor festival, but he only came out for one song. I was feet away while shooting that picture. I mean, how many concerts have you been to that you could just walk up and snap a pic? It was unreal. The following day I  had lunch at Mercer Kitchen in SOHO and did a little bit of shopping. Nothing beats the food in NYC. It’s fresh, it’s seasonal and it is SO good! Saturday night I met up with some good girlfriends for dinner and drinks, which then followed a sighting of Rihanna at the club  Yes, that’s right…Rihanna! We were about to leave and when we walked up the stairs we saw about 3 Black SUV’s which clearly meant she was headed in. We turned around only to be followed by her entourage. She walked RIGHT next to me while proceeding into the club. Only in NY would this happen! Sunday was Cinco De Mayo- so we did a day brunch and enjoyed the weather. The whole weekend was beautiful- sunshine and 70ish. If you have been to NYC you know that is perfect. But hey- when you’re in that city what is not to love?!! I will share more pics tomorrow. Hope you all have a blessed week and are thankful for the life you live.

 

 

Easy Bake Fruit Granola Bars

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups Old Fashioned Oats (Gluten Free if needed)
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup shredded coconut, loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I didn’t use because I was out)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped pitted dates
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.

Toss the oatmeal, almonds, and coconut together a sheet pan and bake for 10-12 minutes. stirring occasionally, until lightly brown. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and stir in the wheat germ.

Place the butter, honey, brown sugar, vanilla, and salt in small saucepan on medium heat. Cook and stir for a minute and then pour over toasted oatmeal, apricots and cranberries and stir well.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Wet your fingers and lightly press ingredients into pan. Bake for 25 to 30 more minutes until golden brown. Cool for at least 2 hours. When cool, cut into little squares. Serve at room temperature.

Keep in mind-the more dried fruit you use the chewier the bars will be. I used mango and they were pretty chewy! Good luck…these are good!

Crazy For Oats.

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TGIF! As the week is winding down I finally have a chance to sit at the computer and devote some effort to my blog. Between classes, working out and work it seems there is just not enough time in the day. Does anyone else feel this way? Thought so. I have been asked a lot in the last couple of weeks about my diet routine and what exactly it is that I eat. I answer, “food?” haha. In all seriousness, I think when people think of healthy they think of getting rid of everything in their diet that they love that is not exactly good for you. Ideally, yes. Reality? No. This isn’t possible, at least the way I see it. I most definitely believe that your body knows when it’s feeling really good and not so great. If you work out, eat real food (non processed/short shelf life) and keep your mind right- chances are you are feeling pretty awesome. If you have the occasional night out, few drinks here and a few drinks there, and resort to unhealthy food as a result of drinking (we have all done this), chances are you are feeling not so awesome. I want you all to know that I eat REAL, unprocessed, organic (when possible) food. This is by choice, not chance. I enjoy it, I feel better because of it, and I have even lost weight in the last year from being healthier than the “healthy” I was before. Eating better doesn’t have to be a dreadful process. For me, it’s a constantly changing. Often, I get stuck on my favorite foods and then have to remember to incorporate the other foods in the pantry/fridge. Find the foods that you love and switch things around so that you enjoy it.

Right now I am hooked on Steel Cut Oats. I used to be a victim of the Quaker Oats oatmeal loaded with sugar and who knows what else, but after discovering these plain oats there is no turning back. They take about 15 minutes to make. You boil a pot of water, throw in the oats, add some cinnamon and stir consitently until the oats become thick. You can add a little fruit, agave, ground flax, chia seeds, and anything else that you love. They are SO good. If you aren’t convinced come to my house and I will make for you. 🙂

Benefits:

Cinnamon: Sedative for smooth muscle, circulatory stimulant, digestant, diuretic, antibiotic and reduces type 2 diabetes.

Steel Cut Oats: A diet that includes oats may decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension and obesity. This is also a great source for fiber.

My Life This Week.

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It has been such a great second week of this new year. Sunday I met a girlfriend at Barefoot coffee and ended up sitting for 3 hours talking about life, goals and my upcoming half marathon that I have commited to run February 3 (she was kind enough to write up a training plan). Holy Cow is right….I can’t believe I am actually doing it. This has been something that has been on my radar for a while, but I sprained my ankle before the last one I signed up for so that was a no go. As of Tuesday my 4 week impromptu training has oficially begun. I bought some new shoes- any excuse to buy new workout clothes/shoes sounds like a good one to me. As we know this week I have been doing a juicing series that is hopefully encouraging people to make this habit a part of their weekly routine to staying healthy. Don’t even try to give me an excuse because the benefits outway the time 15 minutes it might take to juice and clean up. Let’s face it, you would probably on Facebook or some social network if you weren’t juicing (truth).

Yesterday I headed up to the city to meet an old classmate of mine for some coffee, and a hike up to Twin Peaks. Coinsidentally, along with the coffe there was a bowl full of fresh juice packed in mason jars on the counter. She said it was her friends company- SoW – they juice in the morning and then drop off at various locations throughout the city! Could this have been any more perfect?? I chose the beet juice which consisted of

  • Red beet
  • Carrot
  • Orange
  • Apple
  • Turmeric

Once again, to my surprise….it was delicious! 

Juice and cofee were followed by a great hike (it was a great active rest day…those hills are no joke) that allowed for probably the BEST view of San Francisco. If you haven’t been there, it’s a must! Back to 6 miles today and a great workout at FNS! Hope you all have a great Thursday.

That which you focus your attention on becomes your reality so choose wisely!

You Want Me To Juice Whaaaaaat??

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Do you think green juice is the only juice that is healthy? Well, it’s false. Although it is true that green veggies provide many nutrients we can also benefit from other fruits and veggies as well. If you are just getting started with juicing, or have picky eaters in your family- or children that won’t drink their vegetables, this may be a great place to start.

{Keep In Mind}

You can always add a green or two such as kale, chard, collards, or dark green lettuce and no one will even know it’s there. OR you can even add some spinach and parsley and people won’t taste a thing. Have fun with this….these are yummy!

Moraccan Beet

  • 1 small bunch of mint
  • 1 dark lettuce leaf
  • 1 beet (boiled), with leaves
  • 1 cucumber, peeled if not organic
  • 1 lemon, peeled if not organic

(serves 1)

Hawaiian Breeze

  • 1 orange
  • 1/4 fresh pineapple, peeled if not organic
  • 1/2 cup coconut water

(pour into glass and serve with ice, serves 1)

Lemon-Lime-Blueberry Refresher

  • 1 cucumber, peeled if not organic
  • 1 apple
  • 1 cup blueberries (fresh preferred, if frozen-thaw)
  • 1/2 lemon, peeled if not organic
  • 1/2 lime, peeled if not organic

(served chilled, serves 1)

Pink Lemonade Sparkler

  • 2 apples (green preferred)
  • 1 lemon, peeled if not organic
  • 1/4 beet with leaves
  • 1 cup chilled sparkling water

(juice all ingredients and stir in sparkling water- pour into glass, served chilled. serves 1-2)

Razz and Spazz

  • 1 apple
  • 1 cup rasberries, fresh or thawed if frozen
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled if not organic
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves

(start with raspberries then apple, cucumber & mint, served chilled, serves 1)

{Benefits of Fruit}

  1. Fruits are low in calories and fat and are a source of simple sugars, fiber, and vitamins, which are essential for optimizing our health.
  2. Fruits provide plenty of soluble dietary fiber, which helps to ward of cholesterol and fats from the body and to get relief from constipation as well.
  3. Fruits contain many anti-oxidants like poly-phenolic flavonoids, vitamin-C, and anthocyanins.These compounds, firstly, help human body protected from oxidant stress, diseases, and cancers, andsecondly; help the body develop capacity to fight against these ailments by boosting our immunity level. Many fruits, when compared to vegetables and cereals, have very high anti-oxidant value, which is something measured by their “Oxygen Radical Absorbent Capacity” or (ORAC).
  4. Anthocyanins are flavonoid category of poly-phenolic compounds found in some “blue-fruits” like blue-black grapes, mulberries, acai berry, chokeberry, blueberries, blackberries, and in many vegetables featuring blue or deep purple color. Eating fruits rich in blue pigments offers many health benefits. These compounds have potent anti-oxidant properties, remove free radicals from the body, and thus offer protection against cancers, aging, infections, etc. These pigments tend to concentrate just underneath the skin.
  5. Fruit’s health benefiting properties are because of their richness in vitamins, minerals, micro-nutrients, anti-oxidants, which helps the body prevent or at least prolong the natural changes of aging by protecting and rejuvenating cells, tissues and organs. Their overall benefits are manifold! Fruit nutrition benefits are infinite! You are protecting yourself from minor ailments like wrinkling of skin, hair-fall, and memory loss to major ailments like age-related macular degeneration (AMRD) of the retina in the eyes, Alzheimer’s disease, colon cancers, weak bones (osteoporosis)…etc., and the list of fruit nutrition benefits never ends!

Important Note: You can add superfoods to ANY smoothie such as chia seeds, flax seeds, and spirulina.

While these juice blends might be tasty- remember fruits contain too much sugar. Try and add greens to every drink to get the most benefit!  80/20 Rule.  A juicing diet should consist of the 80/20 rule. This rule means 80% Alkalizing food and 20% Acidifying food. A normal pH should be between 7.35-7.45. A pH level below 7.0 indicates an acidic forming diet and above 7.0 is Alkaline. You can find a list of Acid/Alkalizing foods here

A Glimpse Of Christmas

Food and family is the perfect way to spend Christmas. By the looks of it we only ate sugar with a little more sugar but I promise there was other things to snack on. I made delicious crostini’s (pictured above) with goat cheese, avocado, balsamic vinegar and arugula. It was a day of grazing and spending some much needed quality time with cousins, aunts and uncles. Talks of prospective trips are in the near future like Portland (to see my cousin) and Mexico for my other cousins birthday and much needed R & R. Can’t wait to start planning the vacations! I also can’t wait for NYE! Any big plans for the holiday?? Share, I would love to hear!

Strawberry Santa’s…I Want!

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Who can believe the it’s the Friday before Christmas and the world DIDN’T end!??? No way! We are all still alive, which means the holiday is right around the corner. I haven’t finished all of my Christmas shopping yet….that would be too smart! Have you guys figured out what you are making to eat on Christmas? I am in the process – will let you know Monday. I want to mention this week has been nothing short of F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S! The energy as well as the team work  at the gym has been through the roof. The gym is closed this next week so everyone is committed to getting their last workouts of the year in at FNS. Work has been great, another example that when you are kind to people they reward you in return and last but not least Whole Foods tweeted me this week! Call me a nerd but I was quite excited to see they asked me what my favorite Whole Foods item is? I have to go with the make your own peanut butter and the WF brand jalapeno hummus. So good! On that note, good luck with the last minute tackling the malls, crowds and have a great weekend everyone!