Eat Your Greens.

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asparagus mixture

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I made this last night for dinner. Green beans, asparagus, and mushrooms over quinoa.

What you’ll need:

  • sliced mushrooms
  • asparagus
  • fresh green beans (I prefer fresh over canned)
  • fresh minced garlic
  • salt/pepper
  • garlic powder
  • chili flakes (optional)
  • quinoa
  • vegetable broth
  • white onion
  • olive oil

Start by trimming the green beans. Fill a large pot with water and when the water has reached a boil- put green beans in. If you have ever cooked green beans before you know that they take a while to cook. Boil only for a couple minutes, strain and leave in strainer while putting ice cubes over to stop the beans from cooking. This process is called blanching. In a separate pan, use oil of choice (I use extra virgin olive oil), fresh minced garlic and chopped white onion on a med heat. When the onions and garlic look like they are cooked add about a cup or less of veggie broth- and then add the asparagus, mushrooms, green beans along with salt, pepper, chili flakes and garlic powder. Let simmer on low heat until finished. The veggies won’t take long to cook- I prefer my asparagus with a little crunch.

In a separate pot cook the quinoa. It’s the same as rice, for every cup of quinoa two cups of water, veggie or chicken broth. I used veggie broth to add a little more flavor. Boil water, pour in quinoa and then reduce heat to simmer.

This recipe is easy and you can easily add chicken to it if you would like more protein! Let me know how it turns out.

 

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“Tacoless” Quinoa Salad.

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Remember this? I posted this on my blog page a couple of weeks ago. It’s one of my favorite, nutrient packed salads. Quinoa is a great rice or pasta substitute. You can eat alot and not feel extremely bloated afterwards. Sound familiar? You can choose any ingredients that you like or take any away that you dislike. Minimal time and it’s ready to serve in a matter of minutes.

What you’ll need:

  • Quinoa
  • Avocado
  • Red Bell Pepper
  • Red Onion
  • Corn (I use frozen)
  • Kidney Bean or Black Bean ( I used canned- no salt added beans)
  • Cilantro
  • Tomato
  • Jalapeno
  • Olive Oil
  • Lime
  • Salt/Pepper to taste

Cook the quinoa separate. For every 1 cup of quinoa use 2 cups of water (or chicken broth for extra flavor.) Dice up all your preferred veggies and cilantro. I use all raw ingredients but you can cook as well if you like. I mix the veggies + quinoa together and mix a little bit of olive oil. I use about 2 limes, and flavor with salt and pepper. Remember- easy with the salt (it’s easy to get carried away but we are so used to it we don’t even think twice.) If you aren’t vegetarian- organic chicken is always an option to add for extra protein. This can be served warm or store in the fridge until ready to serve (It tastes great both ways.) This is great lunch alternative to eating out or a great dish to bring to a party. People LOVE it. Fresh is best!

Enjoy!

White Bean + Kale Soup.

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What you’ll need:

-white beans (I prefer fresh beans but can use canned as well)
-carrot, white onion, celery
-zucchini
-olive oil
-kale
-2 garlic cloves
-fresh thyme
-fresh parsley
-2 bay leaves
-ground turmeric
-diced tomato (canned or tomato paste works also)
-salt/pepper
-lemon

Start by boiling the beans on medium heat. They take about an hour or so, but when they are finished I saved the water and used the bean broth as my base broth for the soup (instead of veggie or chicken broth). In a separate pan – sauté the diced onions, carrots and celery with olive oil on low heat. When the veggies look cooked, you can add minced garlic and diced kale to to the mix. Sauté the kale until it is soft. You can add this mixture of veggies to the bean water or chicken stalk- whichever you decide to use. Add zucchini, diced tomato or tomato paste, a couple sprigs of fresh thyme, bay leaves, turmeric (optional) fresh chopped parsley, salt/pepper (go easy because you can always add later to taste when all the flavors blend). Let the soup simmer- my beans weren’t finished cooking all the way through so I let them finish with all the added ingredients mixed in. Another option is to boil the kale separately and then adding to the bean water. Either way, it gets soft and doesn’t really taste like kale (brilliant for those that don’t prefer it)!

Season to taste, add a little lemon and enjoy!

Side note: .
I like to add crushed red pepper for a little spice. The best part about soup is that you can add anything… Dried oregano and dried parsley are also great alternatives in case don’t have fresh on hand! If you have time to boil your own beans make sure you soak the beans before use. If using canned there is no need to soak. If you have any questions shoot me an email.

Hope You Enjoy!

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

Just A Little Glimpse

Wowee! Is it me or did this 4 day weekend fly by? Between volunteering, Turkey Trot, and eating too much I am ready to get back into the grind. Don’t get me wrong, I love holidays but by the end of the weekend it seems like I overdid myself and need some reality in my life. This including a good workout. I woke up today feeling a little under the weather, but am determined to pump myself with some wheatgrass shots, vitamins, and lots of hot tea. I will NOT get sick! Here are some pictures from my Thanksgiving. As always, it was a great time cooking, chatting and enjoying time with family. There was an excess of veggies (obviously)- my cousin made the coconut shrimp, and a delicious butternut squash/quinoa dish (recipe to come). I made a beet salad, veggie saute, mushroom gravy, brussel sprouts annnnd pumpkin cheesecake. It was amazing. Believe it or not, there was even a Turkey! I hope you all had a great holiday, ate too much and are ready to get back into Monday! Another opportunity for a great week.

Easy Lentil Soup!

What you’ll need:

  • Carrots/Celery/White Onion
  • Lentil Beans (Can buy in bulk section @) Whole Foods {Cheaper this way}
  • Fennel
  • Zucchini
  • Tomato Sauce or Paste (either works)
  • Garlic cloves {2 or 3}
  • Bay Leaves {2 or 3}
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice {Fresh preferred}

How to Prepare:

  1. Chop veggies {carrots, celery, fennel and onion) to desired size {I prefer smaller}
  2. Boil Lentils in separate pot for about 20 min
  3. Saute veggies & garlic with olive oil until tender
  4. When lentils are done cooking, put the saute veggies in Pot {Same water is fine}
  5. Tomato sauce, lemon juice  & zucchini can go into pot with veggies/lentils
  6. You can also saute zucchini for a few minutes before putting in pot- they don’t take long too cook and you don’t want mushy so keep an eye out!
  7. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder {Chili flakes if you want spice}
  8. Let simmer for about 15 minutes until finished.
  9. You can add feta as I did, or even chicken if you desire.
  10. Enjoy!

Sugar Detox…Day 5!

Why is it the minute you give something up that is ALL you can think about! Funny how that works! =)  It’s day 5 of the 21 day sugar detox and so far so good! I have made a couple modifications simply because I am a vegetarian and where as most people would eat more meat….I won’t! Nothing too extreme! No sweets, no refined carbohydrates and the biggest challenge will be no alcohol when hanging out with friends! It’s going to be hard to resist the drinking this weekend, but I know my workout Monday morning will be better than the usual (AND it’s only 21 days!!) This weekend I am running an impromptu 10k with FNS people…should be good times!

Have a great weekend everyone, and stay away from temptation!!