Jan 192014
 

We’re all hearing about the benefits of superfruits ~ in this post I’ll review the Mangosteen and share a delicious recipe for Superfruit Mangosteen Dressing!

It’s all over Dr Oz, the internet, health blogs – you name it – superfruits are hot. It is hard not to buy into the hype so I always do some research.  I rarely discuss supplements because I’m here to promote food first.  Human nature is to say shoot, I can eat whatever I want and then just take these supplements and I’ll be fine.

Baloney. First and foremost we need to eat a balanced and nutrient dense diet of mostly plants, and then add any supplementation on top of that. (And remember – always be sure to read the ingredients!) My daily regimen includes eating Mila every day, taking a liquid coral calcium & liquid daily vitamin, sub-lingual complex b-vitamin and I’m trying a few of these superfruits to see what I think.

Mangosteen

Mangosteen

Source

The Mangosteen is a tropical evergreen tree that primarily grows in Southeast Asia. The fruit is sweet, tangy and juicy ~ but it is the purple “pericarp”, or rind, that is high in tannins and contains an organic material called xanthones. The astringent rind of the fruit has been used in a variety of ways ~ to treat pain, inflammation, allergies, various infections, eczema and wounds, dysentery and urinary tract infections, and is also said to be an immune booster.

Superfruit Mangosteen Dressing

Superfruit Mangosteen Dressing

From doing my research please keep in mind that yes, the rind has a high nutrient content; however, it should not be used to cure any ailments, so please do not believe false claims.

Any food or nutrient can only help build your very own body’s defenses against various ailments. Our bodies are amazing symphonies of biochemistry ~ but it is up to us to treat it right. If we ingest fast food drive from the through every day and then drink mangosteen juice, we cannot expect our body to be able to defend itself against ailments.  It is much better to cleanse our bodies of toxins by eating healthfully, balance our bodies through exercise and eating a variety of colorful, organic foods and build our bodies’ defenses through nutrient dense foods ~ such as mangosteen.

Variety of organic and nutrient dense foods is one of main reasons to consider the mangosteen. This is the same reason you may want to consider joining an organic CSA/farm share ~ it enables you to obtain a variety of high quality vegetables you may not normally find at your grocer. Conventional soils are depleted in the US ~ to think that we can lay down some man made fertilizer and believe we are adding everything to the soil that it needs is ridiculous, nature is infinitely more complex, so by choosing organics you are also choosing healthy soil. This is not to say that all organics are without shortcuts and are perfect by any means; however, it is a step in the right direction.

If you ARE looking for a high quality mangosteen product ~ I have a great one in my wholesale membership club with Genesis Pure  and I do feel comfortable supporting and recommending it like I do Mila. I checked out a variety that are available out there and this one is really good. If I found anything in it I didn’t agree with, I wouldn’t talk about it ~ even though it is a product supplied by my own company. It is wild harvested and has no added preservatives or sugars.

I do suggest that you compare other products and do your own research first, any time you are looking to try something out.  Google “mangosteen juice products” and see what comes up.

Other than drinking it, making a light dressing is a great way to use it ~ especially over the organically grown veggies at KyV Farm or Native Sun. It is gently sweet and really pleasing ~ no need to add additional sweeteners!

Superfruit Mangosteen Dressing

Superfruit Mangosteen Dressing

Fresh Salad with Superfruit Mangosteen Dressing

Serves 4
Printable Recipe
Vegan, Gluten Free

Ingredients

4 cups fresh chopped lettuces and greens such as kale or bok choy
1 large fresh tomato, chopped
1/4 red onion, chopped
1 cup sliced cucumber
Salt & pepper, to taste

Dressing
1/4 cup mangosteen juice
2 Tbsp roasted garlic extra virgin olive oil (plain will be fine too)
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp honey

Directions

1. Divide lettuce, tomato and onion evenly over four plates.

2. Whisk dressing ingredients in a small bowl; pour 2 Tbsp dressing over each salad; season with salt and pepper.

Here is Dr Duncan talking about what the mangosteen is good for.

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 64.1
Total Fat 2.4 g
Saturated Fat 0.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.7 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 44.2 mg
Potassium 195.7 mg
Total Carbohydrate 10.5 g
Dietary Fiber 1.2 g
S
ugars 8.0 g
Protein 1.1 g 

Vitamin A 29.7 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 2.2 %
Vitamin C 24.3 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 2.8 %
Calcium 2.3 %
Copper 1.7 %
Folate 19.7 %
Iron 4.0 %
Magnesium 1.5 %
Manganese 19.4 %
Niacin 1.7 %
Pantothenic Acid 1.2 %
Phosphorus 3.0 %
Riboflavin 3.7 %
Selenium 0.3 %
Thiamin 4.2 %
Zinc 1.2 % 

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Jan 132014
 

Move over eggs ~ there’s a new perfect protein for breakfast. My Avocado and Sea Salt Toast has a healthy, balanced blend of fat, FIBER and protein with zero cholesterol.

What’s not to love?

If you are an avocado lover, like me, you may not have thought of using it in place of butter for a simple, creamy and satisfying breakfast for your busy mornings.

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Every day you get up with purpose. You get out of bed, shower, hurriedly get dressed in the dark ~ and manage to get out the door with a black shoe on your left and a brown shoe on your right. True story from my past life.  I remember it only too well.  For all of my hard working friends in Corporate America – I dedicate this post to you.

Who has time for breakfast?

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

You do! Just before grabbing your keys and leaving, toast some sesame Ezekiel bread and grab an avocado, an onion and your knife.

I’ll tell you the reason for the onion in a second.

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Take your knife and cut around the avocado, the long way; twist. For now, leave the pit in the one side because it will cut down on the oxidation (browning).


Source
 ~ The Amazing Avocado

Next, cut your slices while the avocado is still in the skin. (Technically, you don’t have to do this step ~ it just looks prettier.)

Slice Avocado
Source
 ~ Thank you to the Practical Cook

Scoop out half of the slices on one side for your toast and place the remaining avocado in a reusable airtight container. Cut an onion and half and place it in there right along with the avocado. The vapors from the onion will reduce further oxidation.

If the avocado is ripe enough you should easily be able to spread it like butter. In fact, I will be so bold as to say wherever there is butter, avocado should replace it.

Let’s look at butter and avocado nutrition facts in a head to head comparison for a two tablespoon serving.

Avocado vs. Butter

Avocado vs. Butter

Shhh….don’t tell the dairy farmers.

Avocado can even be subbed in baking! According to 3 Fat Chicks on a Diet:

“Avocado is almost like a butter, and just like butter it has a soft and creamy texture. You may have to do some experimenting, but in general you can simply substitute 1 cup of avocado for 1 cup of butter. You may have to increase other liquids as the avocado does not melt like butter.

When substituting avocado for eggs in your baking, start by substituting 2 tbsp. to 1/4 cup mashed avocado for each egg.

Avocado will make your cakes rise up higher in the center, and in some occasions may even cave. It also browns quicker, and therefore your cake may look well done on the outside, but the inside may still be doughy. To avoid these things from happening, reduce your oven temperature by about 25 percent and increase your baking time.”

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

One bite and you will be subbing avocado left and right for everything – ESPECIALLY when there is coarse sea salt involved. There is something about that tiny, salty crunch on top of creamy, satisfying avocado and nutty sesame.

Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Creamy Avocado and Sea Salt Toast

Inspired my a request from my 5 year old daughter ~ she loves it!
Serves 1
Vegan, Gluten Free Option*
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

1 slice sesame Ezekiel Bread (or gluten free bread)
1/4 ripe avocado, sliced
Sprinkle of coarse sea salt

Directions

1. Toast the Ezekiel Bread; spread avocado over bread evenly; sprinkle sea salt.

Nutrition Facts
1 Serving
Amount Per Serving

Calories 152.2
Total Fat 7.2 g
Saturated Fat 0.9 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.8 g
Monounsaturated Fat 4.2 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 83.4 mg
Potassium 299.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate 18.7 g
Dietary Fiber 5.9 g
Sugars 1.1 g
Protein 4.8 g

Vitamin A 1.3 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 10.2 %
Vitamin C 6.3 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 2.9 %
Calcium 0.6 %
Copper 3.7 %
Folate 9.6 %
Iron 5.5 %
Magnesium 9.1 %
Manganese 3.2 %
Niacin 10.1 %
Pantothenic Acid 6.3 %
Phosphorus 10.3 %
Riboflavin 3.6 %
Selenium 0.2 %
Thiamin 10.2 %
Zinc 6.0 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Jan 072014
 

This cheesy chia seed soup is simple, filling and comforting, and will help you lose weight naturally with the perfect blend of fiber, good fats and protein.

Conquer your New Years Resolution!

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

I have completely fallen in love with this soup. Warm, flavorful organic broth, hearty chia seeds with their good fats, fiber and micronutrients, and nutritional yeast with it’s signature cheesy flavor, packed with b-vitamins is a satisfying breakfast, quick lunch or warm, light dinner. This is an AWESOME recipe to take on the go. Pack some warm broth in a Thermos and bring a snack size cup with the chia seed and nutritional yeast – just stir in when you are ready to eat!

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

The chia I use is called Mila – and this blend happened to be blonde.  Any varietal/color can be used and it will be delicious.  Mila is microsliced so that the seeds are opened and have more surface area without damaging the cotents. It is a blend of chia seed grown at various farms along the equator in volcanic soil. For four more reasons I choose this blend visit this Mila bar recipe.

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

Cheesy Chia Seed Soup

1 Serving
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

1 cup vegetable broth
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
2 Tbsp chia, ground (any varietal)

Directions

1. Heat vegetable broth in a small stock pot over medium high heat; stir in nutritional yeast and chia. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
1 Serving
Amount Per Serving

Calories 195.0
Total Fat 6.8 g
Saturated Fat 0.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 575.1 mg
Potassium 440.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 20.2 g
Dietary Fiber 13.9 g
Sugars 3.0 g
Protein 14.3 g

Vitamin A 2.0 %
Vitamin B-12 133.0 %
Vitamin B-6 480.0 %
Vitamin C 0.0 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 0.0 %
Calcium 17.0 %
Copper 6.0 %
Folate 60.0 %
Iron 18.0 %
Magnesium 25.0 %
Manganese 5.0 %
Niacin 280.0 %
Pantothenic Acid 10.0 %
Phosphorus 17.0 %
Riboflavin 565.0 %
Selenium 32.0 %
Thiamin 640.0 %
Zinc 21.0 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Dec 192013
 

Serve these Ultra Gooey Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes straight from the oven and delight the guests at your next dinner party.

(Shh don’t tell them these are from a box and are vegan!)

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

It has been said that the fastest way to win a girl’s heart is through peppermint and chocolate.

(Or maybe it was I that said that.)

Think molten lava cake.

Gooey. Oozing with warm chocolate-y goodness and a hint of peppermint for Christmas cheer.

Be warned however; these should be eaten while warm. Once they cool overnight the magic “molteniness” will be gone.

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Did I mention how simple this recipe is? The reason is that there is no mixing of flour and sugar etc. is because it is all in the box!
But wait! Before I lose you, this isn’t your average box o’ brownie mix with genetically modified ingredients, hydrogenated oils and cocoa processed with alkali….
See the difference for yourself!

Pillsbury brand:
SUGAR, ENRICHED FLOUR BLEACHED (WHEAT FLOUR, NIACIN, IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), COCOA PROCESSED WITH ALKALI AND COCOA, PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED SOYBEAN OIL, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: CORN STARCH, SALT, NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, BAKING SODA

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Madhava Blend:
Madhava Sweetener Blend (organic cane sugar, organic coconut sugar), organic wheat flour, organic cocoa powder, Ancient Grains Flour (organic spelt, organic KAMUT®, organic farro), organic vanilla, salt

Which one would we rather put into our kid’s bodies?

__________________________________________________________

Tell us, what is your favorite dessert to make for the holidays?

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Ultra Gooey Peppermint Brownie Cupcakes

Serves 12
Vegan
Printable Recipe
*On sale at Native Sun Natural Food Market Dec 7, 2013-Jan 6, 2014

Ingredients

1 box Madhava Ooey Gooey Brownie Mix*
1 Tbsp ground chia + 4 Tbsp water
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup water
2 peppermint candy canes, crushed*
2 drops peppermint extract

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 325F. Mix the chia and water and set aside. Mix the brownie mix and melted coconut oil until blended; add the water and mix again; stir in crushed candy canes and peppermint extract; spoon into 12 muffin tins lined with baking cups.

2. Bake 35-40 minutes or until edges begin to firm.

Estimated Nutrition Info – (Madhava brand was not available)
12 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 225.6
Total Fat 13.2 g
Saturated Fat 8.8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.9 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.7 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 87.6 mg
Potassium 5.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 25.9 g
Dietary Fiber 0.4 g
Sugars 16.9 g
Protein 1.8 g

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Dec 162013
 
Cranberry Walnut Stuffed Acorn Squash

This Sweet and Tangy Walnut Cranberry Acorn Squash recipe is full of holiday cheer and is the perfect side dish! 

Acorn Squash

Acorn Squash – Source

This recipe was born from the boat load of fabulous, organic acorn squash I got with my CSA at KyV Farm. Though they do make a superb Christmas-y centerpiece, I decided to use a few of them to create an easy and delicious holiday meal side dish.

Walnut Cranberry Acorn Squash

Walnut Cranberry Acorn Squash

Upon the first taste and I knew what my contribution to the Christmas dinner will be this year! The walnuts become caramelized under the sweet maple syrup and rich coconut oil to give this dish almost a dessert-like flair. For anyone with a nut allergy, like my daughter, simply leave the nuts out, spoon the cranberry mixture into the reserved squash halves and mix the nuts in afterwards.

Note: This recipe was taste tested by both me and my mom so there you have it. The EXPERT opinion that yes, indeed this recipe is holiday table ready!

Walnut Cranberry Acorn Squash

Walnut Cranberry Acorn Squash

Walnut Cranberry Acorn Squash

Inspired by the baking blog
Serves 6 (1/2 squash each)
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

3 small acorn squash, cut in half, seeds removed (from KyV Farm)
1 can whole bean cranberry sauce
3 Tbsp maple syrup
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp chopped nuts (I used mostly walnuts and some pecans)
6 tsp coconut oil

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375F; mix cranberry sauce, syrup, salt and nuts in a small bowl. Spoon evenly between six acorn squash halves; top with 1 tsp each of coconut oil. Bake 1 hour or until squash is fork tender.

Nutrition Facts
6 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 285.8
Total Fat 7.3 g
Saturated Fat 4.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.7 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 114.3 mg
Potassium 784.1 mg
Total Carbohydrate 56.7 g
Dietary Fiber 4.5 g
Sugars 28.0 g
Protein 2.3 g

Vitamin A 14.7 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 17.6 %
Vitamin C 39.6 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 0.5 %
Calcium 8.1 %
Copper 10.2 %
Folate 10.0 %
Iron 9.6 %
Magnesium 19.0 %
Manganese 40.6 %
Niacin 7.9 %
Pantothenic Acid 8.9 %
Phosphorus 9.0 %
Riboflavin 1.6 %
Selenium 1.9 %
Thiamin 21.0 %
Zinc 5.4 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Dec 032013
 

You will love this light and buttery Sugar Cookie Recipe made without butter! They just so happen to be super simple to make, vegan & gluten free.

Buttery Delicious Vegan and Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

Buttery Delicious Vegan and Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

They are cute, yes?

 It is the holidays and we all want to spend time with family and want our comfort foods.  After talking with my mother in law about her yearly cookie ritual and the amount of butter involved I thought, self, you know how many people want to be healthier so why not start now by converting a few cookie recipes so we can still have our comfort foods and feel good about eating them too! Rich coconut oil replaces butter to add a light, flakiness.  This is a perfect recipe for kids that want to help but have food allergies to dairy and wheat.  My five year old daughter cut all these  snowmen out herself and then dressed them with little candies (not shown here).

Plus, coconut oil has been shown to fight viruses and bacteria that cause illness, so therefore we can assume that instead of taking cold medicine we can just eat these cookies.  I think that is a reasonable assumption – don’t you agree?

I can see it now. Food blogger comes up with the cure for the common cold. Sugar cookies.

All joking aside, if I know many of my friends/blog followers, you will question as to whether we can leave the sugar out on this one and use agave or another sweetener. You are smart cookies. (No pun intended.) We may be able to try substituting with raw coconut sugar and I will try that myself next time.  It would be slightly lower on the glycemic index, but not by much, and the texture and sweetness could be a tad off but it would be an interesting experiment.  My goal with this recipe was to give a simple and delicious animal free alternative to those that want a holiday splurge cookie. Done and done.

What is your favorite holiday cookie or indulgence?

Buttery Delicious Vegan and Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

Buttery Delicious Vegan and Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

Sugar Cookies

Makes about 18 cookies
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe
* On sale now at Native Sun Natural Food Market, Nov 7 through Dec 6, 2013

Ingredients

1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup organic cane sugar (plus more for dusting, optional)*
2 Tbsp nut milk or water
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cup gluten free baking flour such as Bob’s Red Mill
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350F; prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix coconut oil in a stand mixer until smooth; add cane sugar and mix until evenly distributed through coconut oil; add nut milk or water and vanilla.

2. In a separate bowl mix baking flour, baking soda and salt; spoon dry mixture into wet in 1/2 cup portions, mixing in between until dry is completely mixed into wet ingredients.  Remove mixture from stand mixer and knead into a ball.

3. Place dough on sheet of parchment paper. Press into 1/4 inch thickness with hands or rolling pin. Cut out shapes with cookie cutter and place on prepared baking sheets. Roll remaining dough in same fashion and repeat step three until all dough is used. Refrigerate cookies for about 5 minutes; bake 10- 12 minutes or until just browned on the bottom; let cool at least 5 minutes.

**This is the perfect place for Ziggy Marley’s Orange Almond Organic Coconut oil to make an delicious variation of this cookie! 

Nutrition Facts
18 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 112.3
Total Fat 6.4 g
Saturated Fat 5.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.4 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 26.1 mg
Potassium 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 14.1 g
Dietary Fiber 1.2 g
Sugars 5.9 g
Protein 1.2 g

Dec 012013
 

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing is a hearty, yet easy to make salad that is sure to satisfy even the biggest appetite! 

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

“Call me, I need to share some recipes that I have been doing ….”

Last week I got a text from Vivian at KyV Farm that she came up with a few easy and delicious recipes to utilize the staples we have on hand – such as greens and beans.  Of course I called her right away so I could hear all about them because I’m always looking for new ideas aside from my go-to staple of “if in doubt, make soup”. They sounded so tasty that I had to go home and whip this one up immediately with some of the beans, quinoa and hummus I already had on hand.

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Here were some of her suggestions:

  • Utilize any greens you have – a whole mixture of bok choy, lettuce, collards, kale – whatever! Wash and dry them and use them as a base for your salads. Top with cooked beans, cooked quinoa and avocado. Now here is the kicker. Instead of using salad dressing try hummus!
  • Chickpea tacos – mix equal parts chickpea flour and water, salt and pepper. Cook them in a lightly oiled pan like a crepe. Stuff with beans and vegggies.
  • Mix greens into fresh salsa right along with any herbs.  Use this in a base for pasta sauce and no one will even notice the extra veggies.
  • Soak some beans overnight and throw them in the pressure cooker with salt-free broth, onions, garlic and sofrito. Bring the pressure up to a simmer and cook 30 minutes then remove from heat.
  • Mix some poblano peppers in with the cooked chickpeas to make a spicy hummus. (I like to throw some greens in there too.)

Upon one taste of this salad I knew Vivian had hit the jackpot! What a way to get your greens in! I love the hummus as a creamy dressing and with 12 grams of fiber and almost 12 grams of protein this is a sure-to-fill-you-up meal.

Do you have any easy and favorite ways to use what you usually have on hand?

Greens Salad with Avocado and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado and Hummus Dressing

Greens Salad with Avocado, Chickpeas, Quinoa and Hummus Dressing

Vegan, Gluten Free
Serves 1
Printable Recipe
**Ingredient from KyV Farm

Ingredients

2 cups mixed greens, chopped**
1/4 cup cooked quinoa
1/4 cup cooked chickpeas
1/4 cup raw broccoli florets, chopped**
1/4 Florida avocado, chopped
2 Tbsp hummus
Salt and pepper

Directions

1. Top greens with quinoa, chickpeas, broccoli, avocado and hummus; season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Facts
1 Serving
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 313.6
Total Fat 12.3 g
Saturated Fat 2.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2.6 g
Monounsaturated Fat 5.5 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 304.0 mg
Potassium 505.3 mg
Total Carbohydrate 41.7 g
Dietary Fiber 12.1 g
Sugars 2.5 g
Protein 11.7 g

Vitamin A 69.4 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 21.7 %
Vitamin C 73.3 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 1.8 %
Calcium 7.1 %
Copper 24.9 %
Folate 26.4 %
Iron 17.8 %
Magnesium 15.3 %
Manganese 35.1 %
Niacin 4.5 %
Pantothenic Acid 10.4 %
Phosphorus 14.8 %
Riboflavin 6.1 %
Selenium 4.4 %
Thiamin 6.5 %
Zinc 10.3 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Nov 062013
 

This “Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch” is tangy, creamy and super easy to throw together. Your kids will love you (and their veggies) for it!

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

I’m “the Garden Mom”.

This means that when volunteer requests came around at school I put my hand up to help fill the garden beds at my daughter’s school that were established by her teacher Sarah. Sarah’s passion for teaching kids about veggies and where they come from is inspirational and I hope that more teachers follow her lead in growing healthy minds AND bodies!

To fill the garden I called my friends at KyV farm and guess what they did…..

They donated TONS of organic seedlings and one of the owners, Vivian, came over to help me and the kids plant them. Vivian is just as passionate about teaching kids about farming and where veggies are grown. She patiently helped each child dig a small hole in the soil and gently place their delicate seedling. Each child left with a deeper connection to the earth and where food comes from. I can only hope that this experience will ignite a passion for conservation, local and sustainable farming and the importance of consuming lots of plants.

Many thanks to KyV Farm!

School Garden

School Garden

Here is a recent photo of the fruits of our labor. Gorgeous!

School Garden

School Garden

So far we have created “Monster Smoothies” at Halloween and the kids enjoyed delicious veggie and fruit smoothies made with several kale varieties and Swiss chard.

Today some of the kohlrabi and a few more of the greens were harvested to be eaten raw. What better way to eat raw veggies than with ranch dressing right? Except….my daughter is allergic to dairy and frankly, I’m not that excited about the idea of her having dairy anyway. So just this morning I created this recipe.

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

I was SO happy with the results that I simply had to share.  Three ingredients almost doesn’t seem like a recipe at all, but it is a great way to get skeptical kids to eat a whole variety of veggies. I can’t wait to use this for all the veggies we will get next week from our first KyV Farm Share installment!

Proof that kids will eat raw vegetables….

**Please keep in mind that this is meant to be used sparingly. You’ll definitely want to stick to 1-2 tablespoons because it is fairly calorie dense.  Use this as a treat to help kids dip their toe into trying new veggies or as a fun party dip.

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

Three Ingredient Vegan Ranch

Serves 4 Generous 1-Tbsp
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe
*Ingredients on sale at Native Sun, October 7-November 7, 2013

Ingredients

1/4 cups Pesto Vegenaise
1 Tbsp plain non-dairy milk (I used rice milk)
1 tsp coarse ground prepared mustard

Directions

1. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl or dish. Use as dip, dressing or spread!

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 93.1
Total Fat 9.0 g
Saturated Fat 0.5 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 116.4 mg
Potassium 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 0.4 g
Dietary Fiber 0.0
Sugars 0.0 g
Protein 0.0 g
Vitamin E 0.1 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

 Posted by at 11:28 am
Sep 092013
 
EASY Vegan Eggplant "Parm"

EASY Vegan Eggplant “Parm”

 Wednesday is a big day.

Easy Vegan and Gluten Free Eggplant Parm

Easy Vegan and Gluten Free Eggplant Parm

I’m goin’ back to school!

What will I be taking?

Classes towards my certificate in plant based nutrition with Cornell!

Here is the info on it….

“A powerful science-based approach to nutrition that can dramatically reduce your risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity and improve your quality of life.”

“”You are what you eat.” We’re all familiar with this oft-quoted adage. Today, thanks to an emerging body of research on plant-based nutrition, we’re better able than ever to understand how diet affects both the development and treatment of disease. This powerful, research-based approach is shifting the healthcare paradigm.

This certification program consists of three two-week courses that provide you with a holistic view of proper nutrition and its relationship with health and disease. Learn the basis for dietary causes of chronic degenerative diseases, and clinical solutions for reducing risk. Uncover practical applications of a whole-food, plant-based diet and the positive effect it could have on our health care systems and society. All nutrition courses in this program are based on the breakthrough work that Cornell Professor Emeritus T. Colin Campbell has developed during his 40+ years experience in experimental research and 20 years in public policy. This work was popularized in the best-selling book, The China Study.”

I am SO excited and plan to do a review of my experience and sharing the info with you all – my dear readers.

Hot Rocks Seasoning

Hot Rocks Seasoning

I don’t expect there to be many changes to my recipe choices or style – but I do hope that the information will enrich the content of this blog and I plan to include what I learn in my cooking classes and the programs I want to start with kids.

Garlic Joy Marinara

Garlic Joy Marinara

This recipe is a creation inspired by my upcoming classes.  Rich with eggplant and tomato – I can’t seem to get enough tomato sauce or marinara lately! But after my return from my week long camping trip in the Keys last week I just didn’t have it in me to make up a pot of my own sauce – so for this recipe I broke out my most treasured jarred sauce – Garlic Joy Marinara!

My daughter and I made this recipe together and we sheepishly polished off a serving and a half and she ate the rest for lunch the next day.  It was that good.  The eggplant came out so delicious that we could have just eaten this seasoned breadcrumb crusted delicacy without the sauce but we were sure glad we waited!

EASY Vegan and Gluten Free Eggplant "Parm"

EASY Vegan and Gluten Free Eggplant “Parm”

Out-Of-This-World Easy Eggplant “Parm”

Serves 4
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe

Ingredients

3 Japanese Eggplant
1 cup gluten free breadcrumb (or regular if GF not needed)
Olive Oil spray
1 tsp seasoning mixture such as “Hot Rocks” (mixture of salt, pepper, herbs and crushed red pepper)
2 cups good quality marinara
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella non-dairy cheese

Directions

1. Preheat broiler to high; slice eggplant into 1/4 inch strips; spray olive oil on both sides of each pieces; dredge both sides in breadcrumb; season eggplant with 1 tsp seasoning mixture; broil 5-7 minutes per side or until crispy.

2. Preheat oven to 375F;. In a 8×8 baking dish (or I used a small round baking dish) layer 1/4 cup marinara; 1/2 the eggplant, 3/4 cup marinara, 1/2 the eggplant and the final cup of marinara; top with cheese; bake 25 minutes or until heated through.

ESTIMATED Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 216.7
Total Fat 9.5 g
Saturated Fat 1.9 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat 2.1 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 735.5 mg
Potassium 299.9 mg
Total Carbohydrate 30.1 g
Dietary Fiber 4.5 g
Sugars 11.8 g
Protein 4.4 g

Vitamin A 32.5 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 6.0 %
Vitamin C 4.0 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 1.6 %
Calcium 5.3 %
Copper 3.9 %
Folate 6.6 %
Iron 13.8 %
Magnesium 5.0 %
Manganese 10.2 %
Niacin 4.2 %
Pantothenic Acid 3.5 %
Phosphorus 3.1 %
Riboflavin 2.8 %
Selenium 0.6 %
Thiamin 4.8 %
Zinc 1.4 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Aug 212013
 
Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla "Frosting"

Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla “Frosting”

 I thought I was SOOOO smart.

At my daughter’s daycare I had created tons of vegan and gluten free lunch and snack ideas that she loved and were easy to prepare.  With all her food allergies to wheat, dairy, eggs, nuts and dyes (like red 40) it was just easier to send our own food in.

But the catch was that most of them could be heated on site by the resident chef.

Upon talking with the food manager at her new school there is no heating of lunches for kids with food allergies.

Ug! Back to the drawing board for cold friendly items.

For those of you with kids – what do you pack for their school lunches? Or do they buy food at the school?

Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla "Frosting"

Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla “Frosting”

I have found that the key with children is to keep things simple and fun.  Lately her favorite breakfast is toast with sunbutter, three raisins for the eyes and nose, unhulled sesame seeds for the hair.

These skewers fit the bill perfectly. She loves to dip so this is a fun way to help her get a serving of fruit.
Upon tasting the yogurt mixture she promptly announced that it tasted like frosting. Score! We loved the sweet jeweled look of the skewers and the lemony burst in the vanilla yogurt is sure to please kids and grownups of all ages.

Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla "Frosting"

Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla “Frosting”

Grape Skewers with Lemon Vanilla “Frosting”

Serves 2-4 (1/2 cup fruit with generous 3 Tbsp frosting.)
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe
**Ingredients on Sale at Native Sun Natural Foods Market August 7, 2013-September 6, 2013

Ingredients

1 cup grapes
1 cup blueberries
1 60z vanilla yogurt (I used non-dairy almond yogurt)
1 Tbsp agave (or local honey)
1 pinch coarse sea salt
1 tsp lemon zest

Directions

1. Skewer two blueberries and one grape on toothpicks.

2. Mix yogurt, agave, sea salt and lemon zest in a small bowl.

3. Dip grape skewers into yogurt mixture and enjoy!

**Tip: the grape skewers are delicious frozen too! 

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 98.6
Total Fat 1.8 g
Saturated Fat 0.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 43.8 mg
Potassium 80.9 mg
Total Carbohydrate 20.6 g
Dietary Fiber 1.6 g
Sugars 17.1 g
Protein 1.0 g

Vitamin A 1.3 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 2.9 %
Vitamin C 15.1 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 3.2 %
Calcium 0.7 %
Copper 3.0 %
Folate 1.0 %
Iron 1.1 %
Magnesium 1.1 %
Manganese 6.5 %
Niacin 1.3 %
Pantothenic Acid 0.5 %
Phosphorus 0.9 %
Riboflavin 2.5 %
Selenium 0.5 %
Thiamin 3.6 %
Zinc 0.5 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.