Tag Archives: Delicious

recipes you must try!

Hi!

With all the running hobbling around I’ve been doing, I haven’t been getting creative in the kitchen, but that doesn’t mean I haven’ been cooking up a storm! I have made many recipes from blogs and the internet lately – some have been bland, some have been decent, and some have been superb. Here are my favorites, all of which I recommend that you try!

creamy cucumber walnut salad

this was ser i ous ly awesome! my favorite of all. 

recipe: serves 1

adapted from the healthy foodie

  • 1 medium cucumber
  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 tbsp black walnuts, chopped
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil (or walnut oil!)
  • 1 tbsp za’atar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups mache or other leafy greens

Directions – Dice the cucumber into bite size pieces and add to a large bowl. Add the greek yogurt and mix. Add the walnuts, za’atar, olive oil, salt, and pepper and mix. Add the mache or greens and mix. Enjoy! Serve with additional protein source, like chicken or hard boiled eggs.

If you like walnuts, you must try this salad. Up next is a paleo recipe that I made for dinner one night. The caramelized mushrooms and onions were incredible, I wish I had tripled that part of the recipe!

Paleo Mushroom Chicken Fricasse

Recipe: Serves 1 – Paleo, Low Carb, Gluten Free, Dairy Free

adapted from tgipaleo

  • 1 slice bacon, nitrate free
  • 1/2 cup sweet onion, diced
  • 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a shake of basil, oregano, and thyme
  • 1/2 tbsp tamari sauce
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp spicy mustard
  • 2 skin on chicken thighs

Directions – Add a pat of butter to a pan and place on the stove on medium high heat. Add the slice of bacon and cook until extremely crispy, then remove the bacon and set aside. Add the onions and let cook for a minute before adding the mushrooms. Once the mushrooms have softened, lay the chicken thighs in the pan. After 3-4 minutes, flip the chicken on the other side. Let cook for a couple minutes. Add the coconut milk, tamari, mustard, spices, and stir. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and let everything simmer until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the lid and once the sauce has thickened to your liking, serve and enjoy.

 

My most hardcore paleo-eating friend taught me that you can eat the ends of chicken bones, since they are the softest. They are loaded with calcium and important proteins for healing. I think eating the soft portions of bones and making bone broths is speeding my fracture recovery! That red stuff you see in the photo above is bone marrow.

This next recipe is originally from the magazine Clean Eating, but I found it via the blog The Candid RD. I didnt make the spinach portion of the recipe. Instead, I opted to use my abundance of zucchini and simply sauteed it in a pan with a bit of butter, dijon mustard, and maple syrup.

Maple Dijon Cod

 

Call me cray but I think this photo is so pretty. Look at how the sun reflects of the mustard seeds!

I hadn’ t eaten white fish in so long. This hit the spot.

And finally, a gluten free cookie recipe for dessert!

Honey-Vanilla Tahini Cookies

Recipe: Makes 12 cookies – Gluten Free

adapted from everybody likes sandwiches

  • 1 1/4 cup oat flour (you can just grind gluten free, rolled oats in a blender)
  • 1 tbsp flax
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup well stirred tahini
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla

Directions – Preheat the oven to 350. In a medium sized bowl, mix together the flour, flax, and baking powder. In another large bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, tahini, vanilla, and honey. Slowly add and mix in the flour mixture to the wet mixture. Refrigerate the dough until cool. Spoon dough into 12 cookie balls on a nonstick baking sheet. Bake for ~15 minutes. 

Anyone who appreciates tahini, will definitely love these cookies!

 

Success!

 

 

 

and life begins

Grr. WordPress and I aren’t getting along. I just noticed that my last post got converted to an earlier draft that basically didn’t have any content. So if you were one of the people that saw that version and thought I was exceptionally lame, feel free to go back and check it out.

Anyway, recipe time!

In my week of strict paleo, I came up with a few simple recipes that I have been itching to share. As I looked down at my plate meal after meal, I realized how differently I eat now compared to just 3 years ago. Once I got it through my head that saturated fats are not the devil, I began eating more protein, but the big changes didn’t really happen until a year ago. Reading more studies and opinions widened the range of meat that I would try. Now, I love roasted chicken with the skin, fattier cuts of beef, bacon, duck, pate, egg yolks, and sausage. But it wasn’t until I started flirting with paleo that things like liver and bone marrow began to cross my lips ;). Don’t worry, this recipe isn’t for liver. Baby steps.

Also. I am toying with the idea of getting my personal training license. I think it would be something I would enjoy doing on the side as I try to figure things out.  Does anyone have any thoughts, opinions, or experiences they would like to share?

roasted lemon rosemary chicken with chard & paleo pesto

RECIPE: MAKES 3 SERVINGS

Roasted Lemon Rosemary Chicken
1 pasture raised chicken breast, with skin & bone
1 tsp butter or olive oil
juice from 1/2 lemon
a few sprigs of fresh rosemary, de-stemmed
4+ cloves of garlic
salt, to taste
Directions – Preheat the oven to 425. Place the chicken on a baking sheet. Rub the butter or olive oil over the chicken. Squeeze the lemon juice over the chicken and let pool on the bottom of the pan. De-stem the rosemary and sprinkle over the chicken. Peel as many garlic cloves as desired and place on the chicken. Keep some whole and dice the others. Sprinkle on salt. Roast for 1 hour. Serve with sauteed chard massaged with basil pecan pesto (recipe below). Enjoyy.

Basil Pecan Pesto (paleo)

Recipe: Makes 3-5 servings

1 cup basil, packed
1/2 cup mostly roasted pecans, some cashews (for creaminess)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp nutritional yeast (secret ingredient)
a few shakes of salt
1/2 tsp honey
1/2 tsp lemon juice
Directions – Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Store in a tight container in the fridge. Can also be frozen! (It will brown but it tastes the same.)

Benefits

Basil * Has anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants called flavonoids. Flavonoids protect your cells from damage (and thus, in the long run, cancer).

Nutritional Yeast * is one the very few non-meat sources of B vitamins! It also contains folic acid, biotin, and some protein and fiber.

Pecans * contains vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, protein and fiber! The fat in pecans is 90% monounsaturated and 70% monounsaturated (the good kind). Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant. Studies have shown that pecans can lower cholesterol and thus are heart healthy! They also have been linked to reduced risk of breast cancer and weight loss.

Chicken * an excellent source of lean, complete protein as well as B vitamins.

an amazing lunch

So, I started a Pinterest account.

Not because I want followers, not because I want to follow, but because I needed to do something about the sick amount of recipes I have bookmarked on my browser and starred in my Google Reader. It was getting ridiculous – and they weren’t even useful because the mass quantity of unorganized information was daunting. Plus, there were no pictures with the titles, only boring text – which is not inspiring in the least. (I realize this is something I need to fix with my own blog.)

Since this Pinning has started, my recipe-following has skyrocketed! One thing I have learned though, is that just beacuse something is published in print or online does not mean that it is actually going to taste good. Some recipes have bombed, some have been decent, and a couple have blown my mind.

This one is my favorite thus far and will certainly become a staple ’round hurr…

Chicken, Green Bean, Corn, and Farro Salad with Goat Cheese

Recipe: Makes 4 servings

slightly adapted from epicurious

  • 1 cup cooked farro (I used a quinoa mix!)
  • 2 large chicken breasts, cooked and diced
  • 4 cups green beans, cut and steamed
  • 2 cups cooked corn kernels
  • 1-2 green onions, sliced thinly
  • 2 tbsp minced marjoram [Yes, you must go out and find this. I bought dried but the original calls for fresh.]
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp minced shallot
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 4 oz. goat cheese

Directions – Mix farro, chicken, and green beans in a bowl. Add corn and green onions. To make the dressing, combine the oil, marjoram, and salt. Press with a spoon to release flavor. Whisk in vinegar, shallot, and mustard. Pour over salad and toss. Crumble in goat cheese and toss again. Season with salt and pepper.

Benefits

Corn * gets its yellow color from its antioxidant content, carotenoids! Also has a high fiber content, particularly insoluble, which aids in regularity!

Green beans * are full of carotenoids, flavonoids, vitamin C, and beta carotene, all of which have antioxidant activity and thus reduce oxidative damage. One study showed green beans to have potent anti-inflammatory action.

Marjoram * is rich in vitamin C, A, and antioxidants. It is also one of the richest herbal sources of vitamin K, which is very important for bone health!

Quinoa *  This super food has more protein, fiber, and nutrients than rice, oats, and almost every other grain.

Nom!

Also, just so y’all know, I have added a workout tab to the blog! It made me realize I haven’t posted my most recent lifting routine. I am actually just about to get my 90% hangover-recovered self to the gym to do it…(First and last Thursday night outing of the quarter – don’t judge!)

Full Body Lifting Workout

This takes me about 50-55 minutes, starting with a half mile warm up jog on the treadmill. Follow with a delicious whey protein shake!

Back squats – 145 lbs – 5 sets of 6 reps (always take a break if your form begins to slip! Remember: Duck ass!)

Pull ups – 3 sets of as many as possible

Dead lifts – 120 lbs – 3 sets of 8

Kickback machine – 190 lbs – 3 sets of 6 for each leg cheek

Lat pull down – 75 lbs – 3 sets of 8

Leg curl machine (hamstrings) – 75 lbs – 3 sets of 8

Tricep dips – bodyweight – 3 sets of 8 (or failure)

One legged lunges (with other leg on bench) with barbell over upper back – 50 lbs – 3 sets of 8 per leg

Hanging leg raises – 3 sets of 15+

Other ab work/pushups if you’ve got the energy!

a remedy for the hard days

Health is such a fickle thing. You can feel strong and so good for so long that you start to think that you will never get sick again. That you are just above getting sick. Then, midterms come around, you stay out late a couple times, you work out because you miss it, and BAM – you transform into a walking zombie. My symptoms include…
 an aversion to vegetables
 ice cream dependence
 pain with deep inhalation
 an old man’s weeze
 a sore throat upon waking that only lasts an hour
 constantly tired
 crabby pattys.
My cure?

Chocolate Chip Banana Walnut Bread

this photo does not do the bread justice, I waited until there was only one slice left to photograph it… ;) 

This bread is undeniably delicious and perfect for breakfast, a snack, or even as a warm dessert with a scoop of  vanilla ice cream. It isn’t too sweet to have in the morning, but you can reduce the flour and increase the sugar if you want it to be extremely sweet and dessert-like.

Wet ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp almond butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar or NuNaturals Baking Blend
  • 1 tbsp molasses
Dry ingredients
  • 1  1/4 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cups wheat bran (you can just use more flour or ground flax, the purpose is increased fiber)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup chocolate chips (depends on your taste, I wanted less)
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup walnuts (depends on your taste, I wanted tons)
Preheat the oven to 350. Combine all the wet ingredients and mix well. In another bowl, combine all the dry ingredients (except the choco chips and walnuts) and mix well. Pour the wet over the dry and mix well with a spatula. Fold in the walnuts and chocolate chips. Bake for 60 minutes or until the top is lightly browned and it passes the knife test.

Benefits:

Flax * high in B vitamins, magnesium, and f-f-f-fiber! It has more omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants than any grain!

Whole wheat flour * when you choose white flour over whole wheat flour, you are losing over half of the B vitamins, fiber, folic acid, calcium, zinc, phosphorous, copper, and iron. Whole grains reduce your risk for diabetes and have also been linked to weight loss and maintaining a lower BMI.

Wheat bran * contains TONS of iron, B vitamins, magnesium, phosphorous and antioxidants! 1 cup has 25 grams of fiber and 9 grams of protein!

Bananas * High in potassium which helps the body eliminate excess salt and water (good for bloating)! Also help prevent muscular cramps and improve blood circulation. Bananas are high in zinc, which is key for healthy hair. They have also been linked to the prevention of stomach ulcers because they protect the stomach mucous layer. They are high in vitamins C and A, and phosphorus (which helps improve memory).

Cinnamon * High in antioxidants. Also aids in controlling blood sugar levels. Why does blood sugar matter? Spikes in blood sugar are bad for your health because they cause your body to increase insulin production. Insulin, among many other things, tells your body to store fat. Therefore, eating a sugary/high-in-simple-carbohydrate meal = blood sugar spike = insulin spike = store fat. Even worse, years of insulin spikes can lead to insulin resistance, which can then lead to diabetes.

Walnuts * contain the healthy monounsaturated fats!

[to die for] Lemon Basil & Honey Egg Salad

Good afternoon! I am blogging right now from school because we still don’t have interwebz in our new house. I took my Calculus final on Friday, which went really well! Afterwards, I met up with a new friend and went rock climbing for the first time. It was the perfect de-stressor and a surprisingly good workout! Two hours flew by. I didn’t feel exhausted until I tried to climb up the inverted wall. It is tilted towards you so it is much harder than a vertical wall, or a wall that is tilted away. My arms literally gave out as I struggled to cling to the little rocks. And I had only made it up a few feet… You really have to trust whoever you are attached to! I was mildly hesitant to let go of the wall off at 30 or 40 feet high, but I did and I alive to blog about it. Afterwards, I went home and packed for the big move. Saturday morning, Chelsea, her parents, Kristi, and I spent all  day packing up and moving to our new house. It is just down the street, but that doesn’t make it any less work! We cleaned the crap out of our old house. I seriously spent three hours on just my bathroom. I hadn’t cleaned it the entire year. At least, not really. I was down on my hands and knees scrubbing the grout and I practically had to sandblast the soap scum off my shower. Sorry. I now understand why some housewives get off to hardcore cleaning products. Works in 60 seconds never sounded so good.

All the hard work paid off though, and Zabace is forking over the entire deposit! Pretty sure we deserve a medal of some sort.  If you are a hardcore reader, you may remember that I painted my wall 6 months ago a royal blue. Since that is technically really not okay, I scrambled to paint it back to cream earlier in the week. During the final walk through, the landlord walked into my room and got a puzzled look on her face. She said “Oh…. I thought this wall was blue. I apologize. You must have thought I was crazy.” I guess she had heard from a repairman or gardener that I had painted my wall blue and was planning on nailing me for it. Not a trace of evidence remained, suckaz!

Since then, I have celebrated, organized my room, started Genetics, and made dinner with my dear friend Dina. She finally came home from Palestine after being gone for over a month. We had a precious date that included dinner, wine, and a trip to my favorite ice cream shop. Dinner was an Italian stir fry, which I have never done before. We sautéed zucchini, onions, snap peas, and chicken with olive oil, garlic, fresh basil, salt and pepper and added fresh mozzarella balls to the mix at the end so it was just melted. On the side we had basil-tomato-marinated mozzarella salad, Chilean red wine, and a slice of her mothers jam cake!

Okay. Down to the recipe that got me through one hell of a weekend. IT IS THE BEST EGG SALAD I HAVE EVER HAD IN MY ENTIRE LIFE. I have eaten this sandwich for 2 of my 3 meals 2 days in a row and then some. It is that good. Don’t question the ingredients, just make it and love it.

Lemon Basil & Honey Egg Salad

Recipe: Makes 2 servings

6  hard-boiled eggs (using 2 or 3 of the 6 yolks)

2 tbsp mayo

fresh basil, shredded

1 tbsp honey

squeeze of fresh lemon juice

dash cinnamon

dash dill

dash salt

whole wheat bread

tomato, sliced

Directions -

To prepare the eggs: Place eggs in a medium pot and cover with 1 inch (above) of cold water. Bring to boil on the stove. Once at a solid boil, remove from heat and cover. Let sit for 12 minutes. Immediately transfer eggs to bowl of ice water and let cool for at least 10 minutes. Peel.

Combine eggs with basil, honey, lemon, mayo, dill, and cinnamon (the two spice are optional but add if you have them!). Toast whole grain bread and top with tomato slices and half of the egg salad. Save leftovers in the fridge!

Make this. Change your life.

My all time favorite go to snack..

I’ve been bad. I’ve been keeping a secret from you.

Or more, withholding one of my favorite recipes of all time.

The recipe is for nut bars that are out of this world delicious and incredibly nutritious.

They are high (healthy) fat, high fiber, gluten free, low carb, suga free, and the portion size is awesome.

The inspiration came from my obsession with Kind Bars. Unfortunately, my wallet is not so obsessed with them. The tanned hide actually cringes as I remove a 10 dollar bill for a measly 5 bars.

My favorite flavor is the Almond Walnut Macadamia protein plus bar. It has hints of vanilla and extra protein. May I present…

Positively Nutty Bars!

Recipe: Makes ~5 bars

1/4 cup cashews, roasted

1/4 cup peanuts, roasted

3 tbsp almond flour

1 tbsp pecans, chopped

3 tbsp puffed kamut

2 tbsp ground flax

1 tbsp shredded coconut

1 tsp sunflower seeds

1 tsp wheat germ (sub flax to keep them gluten free)

dash salt

Wet ingredients – 

2 egg whites

1 tbsp tahini

30 drops NuNaturals vanilla stevia, or to taste

optional: 1/8 tsp vanilla bean scrapings

About substitutions: Obviously there are a lot of ingredients, but that is because I wanted them to have a bit of everything, not out of necessity. Feel free to sub in and out different types of nuts for endless flavor combinations. If you don’t have stevia, you can use a bit of honey or maple syrup and a few drops of vanilla extract. If you don’t have almond flour, you can make it in the blender or food processor, or just use whole or chopped almonds. Substitutions should be okay as long as when you add the wet ingredients it can all be held together and is not too dry and not too wet. You want to be able to spread it in a baking sheet.

Directions: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. Combine the wet ingredients in another bowl and mix until homogenous. Pour the wet into the dry and mix until combined. Spread into a greased baking sheet (that has walls) so that the batter is about as thick as your finger nail. Bake for  7-8 minutes. Let cool and slice and enjoy! Store in the fridge or freezer.

look at the chunks of nuts, all weaved into a blanket of protein and fiber ;)

Benefits:

Pecans * contains vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, protein and fiber! The fat in pecans is 90% monounsaturated and 70% monounsaturated (the good kind). Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant. Studies have shown that pecans can lower cholesterol and thus are heart healthy! They also have been linked to reduced risk of breast cancer and weight loss.

Peanuts * a great source of manganese, Vitamin E, tryptophan (calming!), niacin, folate, and copper! Peanuts also contain lots of healthy monounsaturated fats and antioxidants! They have been linked to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and have been shown to significantly lower your chances of getting colorectal cancer.

Almond flour * by subbing almond flour for regular flour, you are getting more healthy fats and less carbs in your bars. These are monounsaturated fats, which raise HDL (good cholesterol) levels and lower LDL (bad cholesterol) levels! Almonds also have fiber, manganese, vitamin E (another antioxidant), tryptophan, copper, B2 and phosphorous!

Cashews * may help prevent gall stones and are a prime source of copper, tryptophan, magnesium, and phosphorous. Low copper intake can lead to anemia, osteoporosis, elevated LDL cholesterol (bad), and join problems. Inadequate magnesium can lead to muscle cramps (the kind that wake you up at night in agony), headaches, high blood pressure, and fatigue. While obviously high in fat, most of it is monounsaturated and may help lower triglyceride levels and reduce risk of cardiovascular disease.

Coconut * coconut gets a bad rap because of its saturated fat content, but its fatty acids are mainly medium-chain triglycerides, not long-chain. The long-chain triglycerides are bad for our cholesterol levels, but coconut has been shown to improve cholesterol levels. Animal studies suggest that medium-chain triglycerides can increase metabolism.

Kamut puffs * a gluten free grain that has calcium, riboflavin, thiamin, niacin and iron!

In summary, make these bars!

Finals: Survival Mode

First of all, I just want to thank you all for the sweet comments on my last post. Y’all are truly the best.

*

You know that biochemistry lab I have been bitching about for the last 9 weeks? Well, it is finally over. Completely. No more labs. No more lab reports. No more mid-protein-assay break downs. No more quizzes. And no more final.

I had so much anxiety about the final that it caused me to stress eat. Stress eating is something that I think is very common amongst women (especially school-aged), and is even more prevalent around midterms and finals. However, I usually don’t have much of a problem with it. I’ve found that if you fill up on mostly balanced and nutritious foods during the day, you don’t really have all that much room to cram in froyo, cookies, and brownie bars. But this lab final bypassed all that logic and sensibility and had me scouring our kitchen for anything with a 6 carbon chain and a hydroxyl group on the end. (AKA sugaaaaaa.) After a day or two of that, enough was enough. I decided to make something that was sweet, but actually satisfying and healthy to boot. And thus, the personal blueberry pie was born.

Comfort food at its best

This little pie is sugar free, made from whole grains, and packs a punch of antioxidants. Sweet and delicious. Best of all, it can be made in under 5 minutes flat, if you want. The blubes burst in the microwave (or oven) and soak the granola and coconut in sweet blueberry juice. [Since it is sugar free, all you bloggers who are doing Alex's sugar free challenge can feel free to imbibe in this lil' beauty!]

5 ingredients – say whattt?!

Personal Vanilla Blueberry Pie

suga free and supa easy.

Recipe: Serves 1

3/4 cup blueberries (I am obsessed with Rhythm and Blueberries, if you’re local!)

2 tbsp plain greek yogurt

4-5 drops vanilla NuNaturals stevia (or regular stevia + a few drops vanilla extract)

2 tbsp Love Grown Granola + 2 tbsp high fiber cereal (I used Fiber One Honey Clusters)

1-2 tbsp unsweetened coconut shreds

pinch salt

Directions – In a bowl, combine the blueberries, greek yogurt, stevia, and salt. Mix well. Scrape into a small ramekin. Top with granola, cereal, and coconut. To cook, either microwave for 1 minute (or until the blueberries have burst) or bake at 350 for about 8-10 minutes. Enjoy with a dollop of whipped cream!

my precious… 

Benefits:

Blueberries * have one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants of all fruits and veggies. Their anthocyanidins counteract free radicals, which damage cells and tissues. One study demonstrated that blueberries improve memory and learning capacity in aging animals. They also protect against all forms of cancer, especially colon and ovarian cancer.

Oats * A prime source of soluble fiber which has been proven to help lower total cholesterol levels. They also contain a unique antioxidant called avenanthramides which prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol. This is good because the oxidation of LDL cholesterol is part of the atherosclerosis process. Basically, oats help prevent heart disease. They also contain selenium, potassium, phosphorous, pantothenic acid, and magnesium.

[source]

I have been meaning to do a review of Love Grown Food’s granola for ages now. They kindly sent me two flavors: Raisin Almond Crunch and Sweet Cranberry Pecan. Honestly, both were so good that this was the only recipe I was able to make with them before my housemates polished it all off! I am not usually a big granola fan, but Love Grown’s texture is really different – in a great way. It is very crunchy and light. And they don’t skimp on the goods, which is both rare and awesome. There are giant coconut flakes in every bite and each flavor had plenty of cranberries, raisins, and nuts. To top it all off, they don’t add any artificial flavors, HFCS or hydrogenated fats (blech) to their products. Definitely a fabulous granola.