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Category Archives: Well Being

Chilled Broccoli Soup

Chilled Broccoli Soup

Chilled Broccoli Soup

I don’t usually like gazpacho, but this chilled soup is pretty delish and refreshing if I do say so.

The inspiration came from a Instagram post that I never found again, so I improvised as I usually do. A little leftovers and some fresh organic produce in season, voila a new creation is born! That’s my favorite way to cook. Here’s the recipe–

INGREDIENTS:

2 bunches of broccoli (washed and cut into med-small pieces, don’t discard the stems – steamed)

2 handfuls of baby spinach

homemade vegan pesto* – about 2-3 Tbs

white beans (canned ok, 1 can)

extra virgin olive oil

turmeric (1/4 tsp)

sea salt & black pepper

vidalia onion (1/8 of medium onion Рsautéed)

coconut milk (in carton for drinking, not canned – 2 c)

filtered water (1 c)

coconut milk yogurt (plain, unsweetened – garnish on top with a scoop, to taste)

*Vegan Pesto

3-4 small cloves of garlic

small handful of fresh basil leaves, (I didn’t have enough for it to be officially pesto, but it was still excellent on gf pasta, and in this recipe. You can also add in parsley if you have available.)

1/2 cup pine nuts

1/4-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (as needed)

1/4 c Daiya mozzarella “cheeze” (optional)

sea salt to taste (if you use the Daiya, you won’t need to salt much)

Blend in a food processor or blender, pulsed into a coarse meal first and then slowly add the EVOO and puree until like a spreadable paste.

DIRECTIONS FOR SOUP

Cut up the broccoli, including peeling the 2/3 of the two stalks (from florets down towards base) with a peeler and then slicing those into chunks. No need to waste these. Do discard the bottom 1/3 of the base, it’s more woody.

Slice up your vidalia onion, I like thin semi circles.

Steam the broccoli, and while it’s steaming, rinse the white beans until water runs clear. You don’t want to use straight from the can, they’ll be really gas producing, trust me. ūüėČ

Start the sauté pan with a little EVOO (1-2 tbs), onions, pesto mixture, and add in your turmeric with a grind or two of black pepper to activate. Give a few stirs to spread it evenly and when the onions and become translucent and fragrant add in the white beans. Stir it all with a spatula. No need to cook this long, 3 mins beans until are nicely coated and warm.

By now the broccoli will be done as well, rinse under cool water for a brief moment to “shock” and stop the cooking, this keeps it nice and green. Put broccoli into your blender with the bean pesto mixture and pulse to blend a bit.

Add coconut milk, blend more.

Add handfuls of baby spinach last with water, and blend thoroughly.

S&P to taste, and top with coconut milk yogurt.

Bon appetite!

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Summer Salad

Summer Salad

Summer Salad

This salad has just a little tang that gives the al dente veggies really nice flavor. I got inspired and this is what I created.

INGREDIENTS:

mesclun salad greens (or any combination of your favorite delicate lettuce greens, think spring mix)

baby zucchini (or 1/2 a medium zucchini) – chopped

baby yellow squash (or 1/2 a medium yellow squash) – chopped

vidalia onion – sliced very thinly in semi circles (1/3 cup)

sweet red bell pepper (3/4 of a medium pepper) – sliced and then cut into 1″ strips¬†

1 garlic clove Рsliced very thinly 

oregano (dried is ok) – generous sprinkle (maybe a 1/4 tsp)

tumeric – generous sprinkle “

beefsteak tomato – rough chopped

roast chicken breast (I had left over that had been roasted with fresh rosemary, tumeric, s&p, and EVOO), you can estimate 1 small breast per person, or split 1 for 2 people if larger. – chopped into cubes

sea salt and black pepper – generous grind or 2

EVOO 

good balsamic vinegar – generous sprinkle

coconut oil – 1 tsp

chili powder – generous sprinkle

Balsamic vinegrette – 2:1 ratio EVOO to balsamic, a small dallop of dijon mustard, S&P, a pinch of oregano, and splash or 2 of apple cider vinegar (or red wine vinegar).

DIRECTIONS:

Start your saute pan on medium heat and add 2 TB of EVOO.  Toss in oregano and onions and garlic.

When they start to become translucent and fragrant, add in the zucchini, yellow squash and red pepper, and while stirring sprinkle with balsamic vinegar. 

Season with S&P, tumeric, chili powder. ¬†Give a good stir to mix all the seasonings into veggies for a couple minutes. Pretend you’re doing an asian stir fry. ¬†Then add your roasted chicken pieces and tsp of coconut oil and stir to combine a bit more. ¬†Maybe another 3-5 minutes, until veggies are al dente – to nicely softened, and chicken is heated through.¬†

Remove from the heat and add mixture on top of your salad greens.

Add the tomato and your balsamic vinegrette, toss and serve.

Bon appetite! 

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My boyfriend loves doing the food shopping and so I do my best to be patient and loving that he’s so generous. ¬†At times he’ll forget what we have in the house or buy things that aren’t exactly ideal for my “clean” lifestyle. ¬† This time though, he purchased portobello mushrooms and with a big grin said, “what can you do with these?”

Thankfully I was able to do some research and adapt a gluten free, dairy free recipe with chicken instead of pork sausage so all parties would be satisfied. ¬†It came out quite well, so we’re sharing this one for Healthy Eating Always a Real Treat and anyone else who wants to have a tasty hearty healthy meal.

Portobello mushroom caps (2)
olive oil
chicken or veggie broth (1 cup)
chicken apple sausage (Applegate Farms) (3 links)
fennel (medium) chop the white part of the bulb
yellow onion (1/2 medium) chopped
celery (2 stalks) chopped
garlic (3 cloves) minced
GF bread (2 slices) toasted and cubed
1 large egg
Daiya mozzerella cheese (1/2 c + a little more for topping)
rosemary (1/2 tablespoon) – I used dried, chopped
oregano (generous sprinkle)
tumeric (generous sprinkle)
cayenne (tiny sprinkle)
sea salt and black pepper (generous sprinkle)

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees F.
Wipe off your mushrooms with a paper towel to remove dirt, and gently scrape out the gills with a spoon.

Drizzle some EVOO on the bottom of your baking dish or tray and on top of the mushrooms, set aside.

Saute your sausage, if you are using the Applegate Chicken sausage, you’ll brown it a bit first and then take off heat and chop it up so it’s all in small pieces. I actually broke it up with a knife and fork and then further into smaller pieces with my hands. Place back in the pan with a drizzle of olive oil.

Add chopped onion, fennel, garlic, and spices, continue to saute until tender. (5-10 minutes)

Add broth (can also use white wine), to deglaze the pan and cook for another 5 minutes. Meanwhile toast your bread – I used Canyon Bakehouse gluten free bread. Once toasted, slice into small cubes.

Stir in the bread cubes and cheese (I use vegan, gf, Daiya cheese). The bread should soak up the broth.

Lightly beat your egg and remove from the heat and stir in the egg to the mixture. Scoop into the mushroom caps to make generous mounds, and top with another bit of cheese.

Bake in the 450 degree oven for 30 minutes, until the mushrooms are tender and the stuffing has browned. (Check after 15-20 to make sure nothing is burning).

Bon Appetite!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veggie Saute

veggiesauteSauteed veggies are a common dish for me to prepare with whatever tasty vegtables are available and seasonal at the time.

Brown rice 1 cup

Italian Tuscan Kale 2 leaves

3 cherry tomatoes

2 button mushrooms

2 cloves of garlic

1/8 of an onion

sprinkle of tamari (GF)

1/4 tsp of turmeric

1/4 tsp of ginger

I always start the saute the same way, with some olive oil and thinly sliced garlic or onions. ¬†Once they start to become fragrant and translucent I’ll add in some spices – like turmeric, oregano and cayenne. ¬†[Note: It’s best to use turmeric with black pepper also because it amplifies the effectiveness of it’s active anti-inflammatory nature by 1000-2000%!] ¬†Shortly, I’ll add the next batch of veggies – in this case it was button mushrooms and cherry tomatoes roughly chopped (could be also with zucchini, bell peppers). I like to let these cook for a short while, a few minutes stirring occasionally so they get soft and the flavors start to marry with each other. ¬†You can add any type of grain you like next (quinoa is also nice), here I’ve got some cooked brown rice, which I added about a cup to the pan with a little extra olive oil (about a TB). Stir the rice to coat and allow it to absorb the flavors already in the pan. ¬†I chopped up some ginger super finely, about a 1/2 tsp and add to the pan, with a sprinkle of tamari (gluten free) stirring as I add. ¬†And finally, in a few more minutes, add your leaves – whatever green leafies you like best – here I’ve added 2 leaves of dino kale (Italian Tuscan kale). Here I’ve omitted the stalks, as I didn’t blanch it or steam it first and the stalks are a bit tough. I always add the leaves last – it could be spinach, arugula, or swiss chard easily as well. ¬†Voila! Super healthy snack or meal.

Who Is A Bottom Feeder Anyway?

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I recently heard someone I thought I respected call someone else a “bottom feeder.” I felt myself cringe. Usually my respect and admiration is greater for those who are less judgmental and don’t need to name call. Labels can dis-able. Somehow this time the opinionated statement sent my mind spiraling into a series of questions. ¬†What constitutes someone being deemed a “bottom feeder?” What’s wrong with feeding on the bottom if you are on the bottom? And am I a bottom feeder because I recently hit a bottom myself?

Taking big risks means sometimes I find myself falling down hard, but I pride myself on my bounce-ability. I like to go for big dreams, and pursue whatever I desire with gusto. Yet, occasionally, I’ll misjudge or misstep, and arguably even those experiences are meant to be my lessons of contrast. So I pick myself up, dust off, and continue gladly along my path.

Bottom feeding. Feeding on the bottom. What is one to be, do, have if one doesn’t take advantage of the resources closest at hand to move through experiences and gather strength to move onward and upward? Even the notion of onward or upward can be debatable, we really have nowhere to “get to.”

Yet, life feels like I am on a journey of self-improvement, growth and learning through my creation of multi-faceted experiences. I like to squeeze every drop out of life I can, saying yes until the cost is too high along my way.

If I’m a wild child feeding on the marrow of life. It may seem from one’s narrow point of view to be feeding on the bottom, to me it may be am elevated perch from where I was previously resting, and I will quench my thirst and sate my hunger.

ImageThere are times that even when we try try try nothing seems to work. ¬†It’s easy to get frustrated and annoyed at the world, it appears that everything else spirals in the opposite direction of what we want in such short order. ¬†Lines at the store or bank take forever, all the traffic lights are red and stop and go, we just miss our connection at a bus or train station and must wait. In fact, I’ve always ix-nayed the word “try,” as in when we are “trying too hard” we’re totally in our heads, a space of duality.¬†Times like this it’s best to slow down and pay attention to whatever we are thinking being in opposition with any semblance of The Flow. ¬†Where is that special point of flowing-ness? ¬†How can we re-align ourselves with ease, joy and glory where life just is effortless and enjoyable again?

My first cue to take a pause is my moodiness. ¬†When I’m in a space of being out of sorts, I’ll just stop and focus on nature for awhile. ¬†Or focus on nature and meditate. ¬†I’m grateful for being here and just breathe into the softness and gentleness of my soul. ¬†Checking in, yes, I’m still here whatever, however, wherever “here” may be.

Now I’ve learned some supportive grounding breath work tools: squeeze muhla banda (Sanskrit for root or base, beginning or foundation, which means basically do kiegels), then squeeze your heart, place your attention on your crown at the top of your head and breathe from above in the heavens into the top of your head and down through your¬†heart and¬†center of yourself out of your root chakra into the earth, and then back up again pulling from the earth upwards. ¬†This is a great start to clearing gunk out of your system to regain grounded-ness and clarity, which allows for creativity and wisdom, as well as power and energy, love and communication, vision and intuition, and magnetic vibration! ¬†We are the abundance we seek. There is nothing we are not!

Happy clearing.