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Sea Salt Popcorn with Kale Crumbles

Kale Popcorn Recipe Meme

I’ll be the first to admit it….there is SOMETHING about movie theater popcorn that is utterly delicious. And, no visit to the movie theater feels complete without it.

I also know that just two or three handfuls isn’t enough of this addicting, salty, crunchy snack. Before you know it your down to the crumbs….and those can’t be left behind either! I hope I’m not alone with this…

Unfortunately, the traditional movie theater popcorn doesn’t do much for our health. According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest a medium popcorn and soda combo at a Regal movie theater is calorically comparable to three McDonalds Quarter Pounders with 12 extra pats of butter!!!! 

Give me a minute while I pick my jaw up off the ground…..

If you have worked with me, heard me speak or attended one of my workshops you know that I’m not one to dwell on calories. Using calories is a misguided way of choosing healthy foods, in my opinion. To put is simply – 300 calories of broccoli and 300 calories of jelly beans just are not the same nutritionally speaking.

However, the comparison of popcorn to fast food and a load of butter take it to a whole new level. This is NOT ok – especially since sitting and watching a two-house movie isn’t exactly a super energy burning activity.

Aside from the ridiculous number of calories in that box of popcorn we should also talk about the QUALITY of the ingredients. Popcorn ingredients and process varies from theater to theater. But, suffice to say that cheap, low quality ingredients are the norm everywhere. They want to make max profit on that $8 box they’re selling!

Corn is one of the main GM (genetically modified) foods in the US, so you can be sure that this is the kind movie theaters are popping up into those white clouds of crunchy goodness. GM foods have become a concern for many in regards to our health and environmental impacts.

But the yumminess of our popcorn doesn’t stop there. The oil and salt is what makes eating it so satisfying! Many years ago movie theaters used coconut oil to make their popcorn but it has since been demonized as being an unhealthy saturated fat (in case you haven’t heard, coconut oil is NOT bad for you!). In response theaters started popping corn using low quality, canola oil – a VERY unhealthy trans fat. The salt is your traditional, iodized salt which has been depleted of critical minerals. Adding that buttery topping? You’re squirting artificial flavorings, colors and who knows what other weird stuff on there.

I’m not here to ruin your next movie theater experience. I want to give you an amazing alternative that will satisfy the biggest salt craving and add some wonderful nutrients to this normally guilt inducing snack.

Bring your big purse and sneak a few bags into your next movie date…..not that I’m speaking from experience here….

I do recommend getting a air popcorn popper. They usually run no more than $20 and will provide you will endless bowls of delicious, fresh, chemical free snacking. And, a cheap movie snack!

Kale Popcorn Recipe Meme

Sea Salt Popcorn with Kale Crumbles
Serves 3-4

Ingredients

For the kale crumbles
1 large bunch of kale (you can also use bagged kale if you prefer)
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
sea salt

For the popcorn
1/4 cup organic popping corn (the organic label ensures that you are also buying a non-GMO product).
6 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil, melted
2 teaspoons sea salt
Nutritional yeast, to take (optional)

Instructions – kale crumbles

1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees.

2. Remove ribs from kale and cut into large pieces (1 1/2 to 2 inches). Place kale pieces on a baking sheet and drizzle with the melt coconut oil. Toss until well coated. You want the kale to be slightly coated with oil, not dripping. Sprinkle with a few pinches of sea salt.

3. Place baking sheet in oven and bake for about 20 minutes, turning the leaves halfway through. Keep an eye on them as they can burn quickly. Remove from oven when most of the kale is crisped – often not all will crisp up in the oven, but will finish while the kale cools on the pan. Place the pan on a heat safe surface until the kale cools completely.

4. Once the kale is cool, crumble it in your hands into a small bowl. Set aside.

Instructions – popcorn

1. While the kale is in the oven you can make your popcorn using an air popper.

2. If you don’t have an air popper you can do it on the stovetop. Using the biggest pot you have heat about 1 tablespoon of coconut oil over medium heat. When hot add your corn, cover with a lid and reduce heat to medium-low (the temperature may vary depending on your stove). Shake the pot every 30-45 second to keep the kernels moving around so they don’t burn. Covering the pot lid with a dishtowel can help keep the heat from your hands. Keep shaking until you hear popping, turn off the heat and let the pot sit on the stove until the popping stops. You might want to give it a shake or two while the corn pops to keep the kernels moving.

3. Once your popcorn is done, pour it into a bowl, drizzle with the melted coconut oil and sprinkle with salt, nutritional yeast (if using) and kale crumbles. Don’t go too crazy with the salt! Don’t forget the kale has some salt on it and the nutritional yeast also has a salty flavor. Taste and add more salt if needed.

Comments { 1 } · Posted on April 13, 2016 in Healthy Recipes

Gluten Free Banana Oat Pancakes

I’m an egg girl when it comes to breakfast. But every so often, on a lazy Sunday morning, pancakes start calling my name.

I’m also a pretty lazy cook. Which means that even the thought of pulling out oodles of ingredients from the pantry and making a mess that takes longer to clean up than the time I will have to enjoy the pancakes, leads me right back to my trusty, low mess, scrambled eggs. (No Bisquick mix in this house!)

But, all that changed when I came up with this recipe. Pancakes are back on the menu!

Not only does everything just go right into one bowl, these are ingredients that are always hanging out in my pantry. Plus, they are gluten free, have a good dose of healthy fats and some heart healthy fiber.

Need a quick breakfast or late morning snack? I like to pop two or three leftover pancakes in a toaster oven, slather with peanut butter and honey. Oh. So. Good!

As you can see from the peaches (did you notice?), I’ve been holding on to this recipe for quite a while. Now, with the days getting cooler and shorter it’s the perfect time for pancakes. We’ll just have to wait a few months for those peaches to be back!

Ok, now that you’re drooling onto your keyboard and you can’t wait for the weekend to start so you can whip up your very own batch, here is the recipe….

Banana Oatmeal Pancakes

Gluten Free Banana Oat Pancakes
Makes 10-12 pancakes

Ingredients

2 bananas (soft, almost brown)
2 large eggs
1/4 cup coconut milk (you could also use regular milk or other dairy alternative)
1 cup applesauce (the individual cups are perfect!)
1 tablespoon coconut palm sugar
2 cups gluten free old fashioned oats (Bob’s Red Mill is a good brand)
1 tablespoon baking powder
pinch of salt
coconut oil

Instructions

  1. In a medium mixing bowl mash the bananas with a fork
  2. Add the eggs, milk, applesauce, and sugar. Mix with a whisk or hand mixer until well combined.
  3. Now, add the oats, baking powder and pinch of salt. Mix again until everything is just combined. Don’t overmix!
  4. Melt a small scoop of coconut oil in pan. Once hot, add scoops of your pancake mix. The pan should be hot enough to make the batter sizzle a bit. When the pancakes start to bubble, flip them over. You want them to me golden brown on each side. Keep them warm in a preheated oven.
  5. Serve with real maple syrup, nuts, hemp seeds, or fresh fruit. Enjoy!

 

Comments { 2 } · Posted on November 4, 2015 in Healthy Recipes

What can kale do for you?

Wednesday is National Kale Day. And, with cooler weather approaching, this nutritional powerhouse will be popping up at our local farmers markets.

Kale has been cultivated for more than 2,000 years. It was popular in Europe during the Roman times and the Middle Ages, it arrived in North America in the 17th century. America plants more acres in Kale than Brussels sprouts. There are over 50 varieties of kale, and there happens to be 50 Shades of Kale as well.

This leafy green vegetable is incredibly nutrient-dense and should be part of your weekly meal rotation.

Just one cup of raw kale…

  • contains just 33 calories
  • provides 134% of your daily vitamin C needs
  • provides 684% of your daily vitamin K needs
  • provides 204% of vitamin A
  • is an excellent source of calcium and iron

Clearly, a little goes a long way!

Click here for my favorite kale recipe – even my husband dives right in!

Kale and cancer

Apart from its impressive vitamin and mineral content, kale also contains over 45 different flavonoids – healing compounds that are found in the pigments and the cell structures of the leaves. These compounds could potentially prevent cancer. According to nutritionist George Mateljan, kale has been associated with lowering the risks of at least five different types of cancer. These include cancer of the bladder, breast, colon, ovary, and prostate.

Kale and diabetes

Kale can also be helpful for those diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Eating kale and other leafy greens provides a healthy amount of fiber that can play an important role in balancing blood sugar. It also contains some protein, which can help with sustained energy and keep blood sugar stable. 1 cup of raw kale contains 1 gram of fiber and 3 grams of protein.

Kale and liver health

Kale, and other similar bitter greens like collards, Swiss chard and dandelion greens are incredibly cleansing for the liver due to their high sulfur content. Your liver is your body’s detox organ and keeping it functioning properly will ensure toxins are able to be properly processed.

According to the Environmental Working Group’s Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen list, kale should be organic, when possible. Since kale is a hardy vegetable, inexpensive and easy to grow, it is generally close in price to conventionally grown kale.

Kale can be eaten raw or cooked. Cooking does not damage the nutrients as long it is brief – 10-15 minutes at high heat, or 35 minutes at lower heat or when baking. Kale can be added to soups, stews, salads, and smoothies.

For some, kale can have too bitter of a taste. Simply adding lemon juice to your kale salad or sauté can help cut the bitterness and add a refreshing taste. After a frost, kale becomes sweeter. So, perhaps basing your purchase on the weather will make kale even more appealing for you!

Comments { 0 } · Posted on October 6, 2015 in General, Healthy Recipes

Awesome Autumn Breakfast Bowl

 

Autumn Breakfast Bowl

How is it almost October already???!!!

This summer just flew by and I completely neglected my newsletter and blog. I had to take a break and give space for some new inspiration to come in. I am incredibly impatient so stepping back, making space and waiting is NOT my strong suit.

However, it was worth the wait and I have some exciting classes, programs and projects on the horizon for 2016. Now you just have to be patient until I can tell you about them 🙂

In the meantime, I’m back in action with a stockpile of rad recipes and helpful articles to get you back in the kitchen and treating your body well with real, whole foods.

I just got back from a fantastic long weekend retreat with two dear girlfriends and fellow owners. We spent four days in a lovely cabin settled in the woods. We planned this trip back in May with the intention of getting away and focusing on projects for the coming year. And boy, were we productive!

We brainstormed a new program during morning walks, clarified what direction we want our businesses to go in 2016, wrote articles, ebooks and handbooks. Despite all the work we of course also had loads of fun, laughed a ton, went on walks, did yoga, Tarot card readings, watched deer from the deck and most importantly, ate some really incredible food.

We didn’t plan a menu or really have any idea what were going to eat while on our little work retreat. Instead, we grabbed what we had from our refrigerators, pantries and CSA boxes, and let the food dictate our meals. It worked beautifully!

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I want to tell you about the porridge that I made during our retreat that turned out so beautifully, we all snapped pictures before digging in. It was literally, autumn in a bowl and I think I might eat this again and again until spring rounds the corner in several months.

I used leftover rice from our dinner the night before, warmed with coconut milk, cinnamon and maple syrup. In order to cook the butternut squash quickly, I sliced it about the thickness of a pencil and roasted it together with sliced apple at a high heat. Toasted almond slivers is something I have on hand all the time – they are the perfect addition to salads, puddings and porridge dishes. They are easy to make in a dry pan and store well in jars.

While I eat eggs for breakfast nearly every morning, I was surprised that this porridge filled me up and kept me satisfied for several hours. Plus, it was a great way to get some veggies in for breakfast!

Enjoy a little morning retreat with this special Awesome Autumn Breakfast Bowl. What other things would you top this dish off with?

Awesome Autumn Breakfast Bowl

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

half a small-medium butternut squash
half of an apple
coconut oil
2 1/2 cups cooked rice (brown or white, quinoa or millet would work as well)
1/2-3/4 coconut milk, canned, full fat
generous pinch of cinnamon
1-2 tablespoons maple syrup
toasted almond slivers, chia and hemp seeds
1 tablespoon peanut butter (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Peel butternut squash and cut into bite-sized pieces. Remove core from apple and cut into bite sized pieces as well. Toss butternut squash and apple and place on baking sheet with a few small scoops of coconut oil. Place pan in oven and set timer for 5 minutes.
  3. After 5 minutes, remove the pan, toss the squash and apple with the melted oil. Place back in oven for another 8-10 minutes, or until squash begins to soften. Once soft, turn on broiler and brown the squash and apple mixture for 2-3 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside
  4. While the squash and apple are in the oven, warm the rice in a pot with the coconut milk. Once warm add cinnamon and maple syrup. Set stovetop temperature to low to keep rice warm until squash and apple are done.
  5. To serve, fill bowls with rice and top with squash and apple. Garnish with toasted almond slivers, hemp and chia seeds. For added sweetness drizzle with a touch of maple syrup. You can also add a dollop of peanut butter for extra protein. Enjoy the abundant bowl of autumn goodness!
Comments { 2 } · Posted on September 29, 2015 in Healthy Recipes

Love Your Liver Spring Smoothie

Liver Spring Smoothie

I put weeds in my smoothie this morning.

Around 8 am I went for a quick stroll around the yard and picked a few dandelions to put into my breakfast smoothie.

According to Rebecca Wood, the author of The New Whole Foods Encyclopedia dandelion root and leaves are a remarkable  bitter tonic for the spleen, stomach, kidneys and liver.

Furthermore, it stimulates liver function, reduces swelling, inflammation and improves digestion.

Last, but not least, dandelion is a super nutrient-dense food! A cup of dandelion can provide you with almost all the vitamin A you need for the day, plus a third of your vitamin C requirement. It also contains twice as much iron and calcium as broccoli!

Now that is some great motivation to start weeding!

Spring is the perfect time to help clear our livers of stagnation and toxins that have built up over a long winter.

Is it a coincidence that dandelions are in full bloom this time of year? I think not!

Nature knows best.

You can eat wild dandelions – the greens, flower and roots. Just be sure you are gathering them from a clean location that has not been sprayed or fertilized with chemicals.

Dandelion can be used in smoothies as well as in salads, sautes and stir fries.

No only do the dandelions in this recipe have liver health benefits!

Apples, lemon, turmeric and coconut oil also help cleanse the liver and support its overall health.

Ready to put some weeds in your smoothie and give your liver some love?

Liver Spring Smoothie

Love Your Liver Spring Smoothie

Ingredients and Instructions

1 handful of ice
1-2 cups of coconut water or regular filtered water
1 handful of spinach (or other green of choice like kale or Swiss chard)
small handful of gluten free, old fashion oats
1/4 apple, cubed
1 small banana
1 sliver of lemon, peel removed
1 tablespoon each of chia and hemp seeds (or use 2 tablespoons of one kind)
1 tablespoon coconut oil
dash of turmeric
3-4 dandelion leaves and flowers (no stems)
pinch of salt (this helps bring out the sweetness in the fruit)

Blend all the ingredients in your blender and enjoy!

Feel free to adjust the ingredients based on what you have on hand and your personal taste.

Comments { 0 } · Posted on May 12, 2015 in Healthy Recipes

[Recipe] Oven stir fry

Guess what?

Sometimes, the last thing I want to do is cook dinner.

The reasons are varied….

There are days I’m just too damn tired to even THINK about what to cook.

Other times I’m not prepared. Or, what I do have prepped just doesn’t excite me.

Often, I just don’t want to deal with a pile of dishes at the end.

The cooking part can be fun. The cleaning up part can totally suck the fun right out of you.

Can you relate, *|FNAME|*?

I love to cook. Don’t get me wrong.

But, in the hectic of day to day work, house chores, yard maintenance, chicken care, errands and everything else I’m ok with being a lazy cook and making it as easy as possible on myself.

I recently discovered Oven Stir Fry which totally rocked my world and spoke immediately to my lazy cooking ways.

The only dishes are:
1 cutting board
1 knife
1 pan
1 wooden spoon
1 small bowl
Rice cooker
2 bowls and 2 forks (If Mister Wes and I don’t eat directly out of the pan. It’s happened.)Plus, aside from cutting veggies and mixing some sauce it’s pretty much hands off. Throw all the goods in to a deep pan, stir, bake, eat.Oh, and there’s leftovers.Winner, winner, stir fry dinner!

 

Oven Stir Fry
(Recipe note: The beauty of stir fries (and similar dishes) is that you can use a recipe as a guide but then tweak and adjust the ingredients based on your taste and what you have lingering in the fridge. This recipe is very approximate as I literally threw in what I had, mixed a sauce and shoved it in the oven. Trust you instincts and have fun with it! Just make sure all your ingredients fit into your pan.)

Ingredients (This is what I had on hand. Adjust as needed)

2 chicken breasts, cut into smaller than bit sized pieces (I do this to stretch what may not seem like much meat for my meat-loving husband. Sneaky, huh?)
1 medium red onion, sliced
2-3 medium carrots, sliced into bite sized pieces
1-2 crowns broccoli, cut into florets
big handful of green beans, cut in half

 

For the sauce
1/4 cup tamari
drizzle of toasted sesame oil
splash of hot sauce
a few shakes of turmeric
pinch of salt and some fresh pepper
1-2 tablespoons arrowroot powders (this is an excellent alternative to corn starch for thickening sauces and gravies)
water as needed

 

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Throw all your ingredients into a deep sided pan. I use a lasagna pan.
  3. Make your sauce in a small bowl by whisking together all the ingredients. Give it a taste and adjust as needed. If it’s too salty add some water. But, remember you want it to be pretty strong. Once it gets mixed throughout your veggies and meat the taste will become less strong.
  4. Toss your veggies and meat with the sauce. Cover your pan with foil or a lid and put into the oven.
  5. Bake for about 30 minutes and then check to see if your meat is done. I would suggest giving it all a toss about halfway through. If the meat is not done through, put it back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes. If you want to brown the tops of the veggies a bit you can remove the foil or lid for the final 5 minutes of cooking.
  6. Top with toasted almonds and serve over rice, noodles or my favorite…..boiled cabbage for a grain free options. Seriously, it’s delicious!

Recipe adapted from The Yummy Life

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This recipe is a perfect example of the kinds of recipes in the 14-Day Whole Foods Cleanse. Real food, simple recipes. Ready to EAT your way to great health? Join me today!

Comments { 2 } · Posted on April 21, 2015 in Healthy Recipes

[Video] Why you shouldn’t be afraid of this food

Sardines Blog

I kind of lied the first time I ate sardines.

I was in the middle of my two-year nutrition program at Bauman College in Berkeley, CA.

Not only was I reading and learning every piece of nutrition information I could get my hands on. I was proudly eating my way through a whole list of foods that I had never or rarely eaten.

Then, my friend Jamie invited me over to her house for lunch.

And, sardines happend.

Watch the video below, or read on for the full story.

Jamie had been a health coach for a few years and had become my personal and professional mentor of sorts. Plus, an introducer to new foods.

When I arrived she had sweet potatoes baking in the oven and was making a green salad.

Then, she pulled a can out of her pantry, opened it and asked…

“Do you remove the little bones from your sardines or leave them in?”

I had JUST started eating sardines maybe a week before (because we learned about them in school and I was determined to be a good nutrition student).

Wanting to maintain my “sardine savvy” I cooly responded, “oh, I just leave them in.” Honestly, I was kind of freaking out inside.

“Great! Me too.” She responded.

Whew, nice save Tanya!

Fast forward a few years….

Sardines are a staple in my pantry. I eat them regularly on their own or mixed into tuna salad. I even give samples of them to some of my clients. (Who all have agreed so far that they aren’t scary AND are so good!)

Oh, and Jamie is one of my dearest friends with whom I have shared many more amazing, home-cooked meals….with and without sardines. (By the way…she is launching a free journaling program. You’ve got to check this out!)

I want you to start incorporating sardines too! If I could do it, you can too!

Here is a simple recipe to get you started:

Tuna Salad with Tahini

Serves 2-3

Ingredients

1 can tuna, drained (Wild Planet recommended)
½ small red onion, chopped
1/3 cup tahini
Juice of one small lemon
½ cup warm water
1 teaspoon tamari
handful fresh parsley, chopped
Sea salt and pepper to taste
1 can sardines, optional

Instructions

For the tuna

  1. Drain tuna
  2. Break up in medium bowl with fork (this is where you can add in one or several sardines into the mix)
  3. Add onion and set aside

For the tahini dressing

  1. Small bowl combine tahini and lemon juice
  2. Add water to thin
  3. Add tamari, parsley and pinch of salt
  4. Pour half of mixture over tuna and mix
  5. Season with salt and pepper

Check out the video and get a simple tuna salad recipe that you can easily add sardines to.

Are you already a sardine fan? What do you do with them? Tell me in the comments below!

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P.S. The 14-Day Whole Foods Cleanse is kicking off May 8th! If you are ready to have more energy, think clearly, sleep better and maybe even lose a few pesky pounds come join me.

You can do this online program from the comfort of your home. It includes live classes, cooking demos, over 60 recipes, menu plans and more!

Space is limited. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Comments { 6 } · Posted on April 14, 2015 in General, Healthy Recipes

Make your own gummy candy

Sour Gummy Candies

In the last few weeks I’ve become obsessed.

Obsessed with gelatin.

Yes, it might seem weird. Ok, it IS weird. But, I’m completely fascinated by the stuff.

Gelatin is magical. It’s liquid when warm, solid and gelatinous when cool. Amazing!

Think about it. Cooking bones for a length of time gives us the the most deeply nourishing food – broth.

When done correctly the broth will thicken and become gelatinous when it cools.

Like I said…it’s magical!

If you’ve never made stock I’m sure you’re familiar with gelatin in the form of the shivering colored dessert you enjoyed as a kid. I will never forget the green and pink desserts I had to scoop into plastic containers while working at a grocery store deli in college. Ick!

Today, I’m going to introduce you to a different kind of gelatin. One that has been used in traditional cooking for centuries contains critical nutrients for our health AND can be made into your favorite childhood dessert – a clean food version that is.

What is gelatin?

Gelatin is a translucent, colorless, flavorless solid substance derived from the collagen found in animal bones. It is a great source of amino acids, which support healthy skin, strong bones, proper muscle synthesis and balanced mood.

What are the benefits of gelatin?

Slowly cooked bone broth is also an excellent source of gelatin, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. However, you may not have the time or inclination to simmer bones on your stovetop all day. This is where a gelatin powder can be an great substitute – if it is a variety that has been produced from healthy animals. I like this brand.

At 6 grams per tablespoon, gelatin is a great source of easily absorbable protein. This helps promote growth and wound healing in the body. It also contains collagen and amino acids. Of particular interest is the amino acid lysine since it is utilized in muscle building and calcium absorption – two essential components of building strength in and around our bones.

Gelatin can be especially supportive for people suffering from inflammatory joint or bone diseases like arthritis and osteoporosis can potentially help manage inflammation and pain in the joints.

A compromised gut and digestive system can exacerbate inflammation and autoimmune conditions, many of which are connected to joint health such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and multiple sclerosis. Gelatin has been shown to enhance gut integrity and digestive strength by improving digestion and restoring the mucosal lining in the stomach.

How do I incorporate gelatin?

Gelatin can be stirred into warm water and taken as a drink on an empty stomach.

However, it can also be used in a variety of different recipes (a much yummier way of consuming it). To steer clear of food colorings, processed sugar and other additives gelatin can be heated with a juice or other liquid, sweetener and flavorings to create homemade jello or gummy candies. You can even make your own marshmallows!

Gelatin is an all-around nourishing food that supports joint and digestive health as well as liver health, hormone balance, hair, teeth nails and many other body systems. Certainly a food to start stocking in your pantry today!

A quick Google search for “homemade gelatin gummies” or “homemade chewable vitamins” will yield a long list of recipes to choose from.

The recipe below is the simplest one I’ve found and a great way to get started. You can use different types of juices (think blueberry, cranberry, pomegranate etc), add your favorite essential oils (make sure they’re safe for consumption), and even experiment with some spices. I used ground turmeric and a few drops of ginger essential oil to create an anti-inflammatory version. You can leave these out for your first go around if you want.

The possibilities are endless! I literally spent several hours on Saturday making a variety of different concoctions, using different sweeteners, juices and spices. My fridge is stocked and we’re enjoying gummy candies after dinner….just like 1989 🙂

Gummy CandiesHomemade Sour Gummy Candies with Turmeric and Ginger

Ingredients

2 tablespoons gelatin (I used this brand)
1/3 lemon or lime juice
3 tablespoons honey, maple syrup or xylitol
2-3 drops lemon essential oil (optional)
1 tablespoon ground turmeric
2-3 drops ginger essential oil

Instructions

  1. In a small saucepan whisk together the gelatin into the lemon or lime juice and add your sweetener of choice. The juice should be cool. Warm liquid will cause the gelatin to get lumpy. It will be a thick consistency when you first start to add the gelatin.
  2. Heat the juice and gelatin over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the gelatin melts and everything is nice and liquidy (yes, that’s a technical term). Stir in the turmeric and ginger essential oil, if using.
  3. Taste your gelatin liquid and add more sweetener if needed.
  4. Carefully pour your gelatin liquid into small silicone molds, ice cube trays, or a glass baking dish. If you use the glass baking dish you can cut your gummy’s into whatever size you want.
  5. Place your liquid gummy candies in the freezer for about 10 minutes. Once they become firm in the freezer they will keep their form.
  6. Remove the gummy’s from the freezer and remove from their mold. Store your gummy’s in a jar or other glass container in the fridge. They will stay fresh for about 7 days….if they last that long!

Recipe adapted from MommyPotamus

Note: In the above pictures I played around with different mixes of juices and sweeteners. Get an organic juice that is NOT from concentrate to ensure you’re getting the best quality. Read the ingredients so you can steer clear of juice with added sugars and other weird ingredients.

Tell me, what is your favorite gummy candy or flavor as a kid? How can we recreate that into a healthy, nourishing treat?

Comments { 6 } · Posted on April 7, 2015 in General, Healthy Recipes

[Recipe] Pasta with Creamy Tomato Sauce *secret ingredient included*

Pasta Recipe FB

What started as a tragedy at the grocery store ended in a delicious and divine 15 minute dinner

Here’s what happened……

A few weeks ago I was in the middle of running the 14-Day Whole Foods Cleanse and was rushing to get home in time to do the mid-weeek check in class and cooking demo.

(By the way….I’m doing it again in May! Learn more about that here).

Ok, back to the story.

It was a full day. I had a long meeting with my tax lady, several client sessions, meetings and was preparing for a health fair.

Envision the tasmanian devil….that was me! Running from one thing to the other.

When I got in my car to rush home I realized that an empty fridge would be looking back at me when I got there. Shoot! We had not food at home. (It happens to all of us).

I made a b-line for the grocery store with a plan to make a pasta dish that I knew would come together quickly and would be delicious.

How did I know this?

Because I’d made it not even a week before. Like I said…..I’m not perfect either when it comes to prepping food sometimes 🙂  But, it’s good to have staple foods on hand.

I rushed into the grocery store, cloth bags in hand. I grabbed some jarred tomato sauce, tahini for the cooking demo I was going to do that night and a few other odds and ends.

Proud of myself for not getting distracted, and buying ONLY what I came in for, I found an empty check out and had my money out before the girl could ask for my discount card.

When I walked out the exit I was looking forward to getting home, throwing off my shoes, making dinner and talking with all m cleansers.

That’s when it happened.

My cloth bag slipped through my hands and two jars of tomato sauce went crashing onto the tile floor.

I froze.

A guy walked by and said, “ooooh, that sucks!” I had to hold back from using my well-worn trucker talk on him.

So much for saving time!

The employees came in droves to clean it up. Thanks God! And I scurried back to the tomato sauce to replace my broken jars.

Once I finally got home, I recounted every gory detail to Mister Wes. His response, “oooh, that sucks.” Watch it buddy! 🙂

But, he made up for it when he paused between bites of pasta to say, “damn this is good!”

Want a quick, easy pasta dish with a surprisingly creamy sauce (without the cream)? This one will please the whole family for sure!

I came across this recipe while scanning Facebook. The wonderful Kris Carr had posted a video demonstrating her version, “Penne Alla Vodka.” I made some tweaks based on what we had on hand and came up with a quick dinner that will be a staple in our house from now on.

Curious about the secret ingredient? It’s cashews! I had never used cashews to make a creamy sauce before. Wow! Is it delicious! If you have a high speed blender like a Blendtec or Vitamix you shouldn’t have to soak them first.

Pasta with Creamy Tomato Sauce (and a secret ingredient)
4 servings

Ingredients

Brown rice pasta (Tinkyada is a good brand)
1 jar homemade or favorite store bought marinara sauce (make sure it doesn’t have added sugar or crappy oils in it)
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 cup organic frozen peas (or more if you like)
1/2 cup raw, unsalted cashews. Soaked for about an hour
1 cup of water (to blend cashews)
Olive oil (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Bring water to a boil and add a pinch of salt to the water. Add your pasta to the boiling water and follow the package directions for cooking times. It normally takes about 10-12 minutes
  2. To make the sauce simply pour your marinara sauce into a medium pot. Add the garlic and peas and heat over medium heat until the sauce is hot and peas are warmed.
  3. Strain the cashews from the soaking water and place them in a high-speed blender. Add the water and blend until creamy. Add more or less water until you reach your desired consistency. Ideally, you end up with a thick, creamy sauce.
  4. Pour the cashew cream into the sauce and stir. Continue to cook the sauce until hot.
  5. Strain your pasta when it’s done and return it to the cooking pot. Pour the sauce over the pasta, stir and serve. Enjoy! 

Note: A sprinkle of nutritional yeast adds a wonderful cheesy flavor to this dish. Look for nutritional yeast at your local health food store or in the natural foods aisle of your grocery store. Red Start is a common brand.

Recipe adapted from Kris Carr

Comments { 1 } · Posted on February 10, 2015 in Healthy Recipes

Warm Cabbage and Fennel “Salad”

Mister Wes and I always eat dinner at the island in our kitchen. Yes, we have a small dining room table just steps away but for whatever reason the island has become our spot. It’s our table/island for two.

When dinner is ready I take the pots, pans, dishes…whatever dinner is made in, do a 180 degree turn from the stove and plop them directly on the island. I grab some serving utensils, plates and silverware and dinner is served. Voila! And, clean up is a breeze. My leftover containers are in the kitchen island and the dishwasher is pretty much within arms reach of where Mister Wes sits. I clean up leftovers and he puts away the dishes. We make one hell of a team!

If you’ve been following me for a while or have attended a class you know that I LOVE salad. I’m not saying that to be the annoying health nut, nutrition coach over here. Seriously, salad is so damn good….if you can make a good salad that is. I’ve got to tell you, I can make a pretty kick ass salad. I had a cooking class student a while back tell me….

“your salad is better than movie theater popcorn.”

I almost choked on a piece of arugula.

Ok, I’m done bragging about my salad-making abilities. But, now that you have an idea of how much I love salad. Here’s the problem. I don’t love salad so much in the winter. When it’s cold and dreary outside I’m yearning for something warm and comforting. As much as I love salad, eating it in December feels kind of like getting a hug from Frosty the Snowman. Brrrr….

After enjoying some amazing dishes at Thanksgiving, come Monday my body was aching for something green. I’d had it with meat and gravy. I wanted green, crunchy vegetables NOW! When it came time to make dinner I looked in the fridge and the veggies were lacking a bit. But, in the far reaches there were a few things that I could do something with.

Cabbage, fennel, half a red onion, and parsley. Without too much of a plan I sautéed them together and then added some white beans I had sitting in the fridge. I served my creation alongside some delicious shredded pork shoulder that had been bubbling the oven for a few ours (recipe coming soon!). Mister Wes looked at his plate, looked at me and asked, “what’s this?” pointing at my veggie creation. My reply…

“Hmmmm…..how about a hot salad?” Mister Wes, “whatever it is, it’s good!”

Sure, officially it should probably be called a saute but “hot salad” sounds WAY more interesting. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

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Warm Cabbage and Fennel “Salad”

Ingredients

1/2 tablespoon olive oil, butter or ghee (I used avocado oil which I’ve been experimenting with and really love it!)
1 small or 1/2 medium onion, sliced
1/4 head of cabbage, sliced into thumb thick ribbons
1 medium fennel bulb, sliced into pinky thick ribbons
handful of parsley, roughly chopped
1 can (about 1 cup) white beans
salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a large saute pan or wide pot heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion with a pinch of salt and saute, stirring frequently until it starts to soften, about 3-4 minutes.
  2. Add the cabbage and fennel, another pinch of salt and stir until everything is well combine. Cover with a lid, lower heat just a tinge (especially if you have a hot stovetop) and let cook for 3-5 minutes. Check on it, give it a stir and cook another 3-5 minutes. Letting it sit without lots of stirring will let the bits on the bottom brown up a bit which is lovely.
  3. Taste your cabbage and fennel to check for doneness. You want it cooked but still retaining some crunch. Add the beans and cook a few minutes more until they are warmed through. Before serving stir in the parsley and add salt and pepper to taste.

Note: If you do dairy you could add some freshly grated parmesan on top. This dish can be served as a side with dinner or topped with a fried egg for breakfast!

Comments { 2 } · Posted on December 9, 2014 in Healthy Recipes