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Nourish

3 Creative Ways to Eat More Quinoa

5/6/2016

Quinoa, a pseudo grain, (it’s actually a seed) is a nutrient rich food that can be transformed into many different recipes.  One of the most beneficial components of quinoa is its adequate amino acid profile, making it a complete protein source.  The high protein and fiber content of quinoa also makes it a low glycemic food that will actually help stabilize your blood sugar.  Of course the best quality of quinoa is the ability to transform the flavor depending on what your taste buds desire!

 

Below are 3 creative ways to incorporate quinoa + it’s many benefits into your daily diet:

  • Add ½ c of cooked quinoa to a bed of arugula, cherry tomatoes, sliced bell pepper & eggs (pictured)
  • Replace your morning cereal or oatmeal with ½ -1 c of quinoa and top with walnuts, cinnamon & dried or fresh fruit
  • Saute any combination of vegetables and add in ½ -1 c of cooked quinoa for a complete protein source & top with goat cheese  

Quinoa is most cost effective when purchased from the bulk section of your local grocery store or at Costco.  Whether you are on a budget or not, the nutrient density vs. cost of quinoa is hard to beat, proving that eating healthy is very affordable!

Cheers!

B.

 

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Archived Articles

Nourish

3 Creative Ways to Eat More Quinoa

5/6/2016

Quinoa, a pseudo grain, (it’s actually a seed) is a nutrient rich food that can be transformed into many different recipes.  One of the most beneficial components of quinoa is its adequate amino acid profile, making it a complete protein source.  The high protein and fiber content of quinoa also makes it a low glycemic food that will actually help stabilize your blood sugar.  Of course the best quality of quinoa is the ability to transform the flavor depending on what your taste buds desire!

 

Below are 3 creative ways to incorporate quinoa + it’s many benefits into your daily diet:

  • Add ½ c of cooked quinoa to a bed of arugula, cherry tomatoes, sliced bell pepper & eggs (pictured)
  • Replace your morning cereal or oatmeal with ½ -1 c of quinoa and top with walnuts, cinnamon & dried or fresh fruit
  • Saute any combination of vegetables and add in ½ -1 c of cooked quinoa for a complete protein source & top with goat cheese  

Quinoa is most cost effective when purchased from the bulk section of your local grocery store or at Costco.  Whether you are on a budget or not, the nutrient density vs. cost of quinoa is hard to beat, proving that eating healthy is very affordable!

Cheers!

B.

 

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Nutty Granola w/ Dried Tart Cherries

4/3/2016

Granola has received a bad rap and most store bought options are really a not so healthy, health food.  Over the weekend, I had a craving for something crunchy with a bit of sweetness and set out on a mission to make my own version of granola.

This recipe is free of added sugar, wheat and gluten* and is packed full of healthy fats and flavor!

In less than 30 minutes you can make a tasty, nutrient dense granola perfect for breakfast or a snack on the go!

Ingredients:

1 c raw almonds

1 c raw walnuts

1 c raw pecans

1 c raw cashews

1 c dried tart cherries (or other dried fruit of your choice)

½ c raw sunflower seeds

¼ c chia seeds

¼ c honey

½ c unrefined, cold pressed coconut oil

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

½ tsp cumin

Dash of sea salt

Instructions:

Pre-heat oven to 325 and line baking sheet with parchment paper or tinfoil.  Place almonds, walnuts, pecans and cashews in food processor and pulse 8-10 times to break up the nuts.  Add sunflower seeds, chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, cumin and sea salt to the mixture and transfer to a large bowl.  Warm coconut oil and honey to form a liquid and mix together.  Pour over granola mixture and stir until all ingredients are coated evenly.  Spread evenly on the baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven, add dried tart cherries, stir and bake for another 7-10 minutes or until the granola starts to turn a golden brown.  Remove from oven, stir one more time and let sit until the granola has cooled.

Enjoy over yogurt, ice cream, mix in with oatmeal or a smoothie or eat a handful for a quick grab n’ go snack!

B.

*please note I do not promote a gluten free, wheat free or any specific type of eating.  I believe that every person and body is different and food choices should personal and not based on a generalized recommendation.

 

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Energizing Smoothie

3/2/2016

Spring time is upon us and the warmer weather is making me smoothie hungry! 

A few weeks ago I had posted a foodie tip on my facebook page for how to improve the texture of smoothies that include greens. I used the same technique in this smoothie, which allowed me to pack in 3 handfuls of spinach! I personally love the taste and texture of raw spinach in smoothies or as a salad, however, I know many of you don't. Blending greens individually with water before adding in everything else helps improve the texture, making them seem almost non-existent.

Over the weekend I was ready to break my normal oatmeal for breakfast routine and got the itch to create a new smoothie with some of the ingredients I already had in my kitchen. Smoothies are perfect for packing in fruits and veggies on the go.  This recipe provides layers of healthy fats, protein, antioxidants and of course flavor.  It is perfect for breakfast, lunch or mid-day snack providing your body with energy, especially if you are on the go.  The color of this smoothie is eye catching and the flavor is even better, so don't be surprised if it doesn't last long in your smoothie glass ;)

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 handfuls of spinach
  • 3 fresh basil leaves
  • ½ c fresh blueberries (or frozen with no sugar added)
  • 1 serving of whey or hemp protein powder (I prefer chocolate for this recipe)
  • 1 tbsp of natural almond butter
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 6 - 8 oz water
  • 6 ice cubes
  • dash of both cinnamon & nutmeg

 

Instructions:

Place spinach, basil and water in blender and blend until smooth.  Add in remaining ingredients and blend until all are mixed well and smooth.  If you prefer a different consistency, add more water.  Pour into your favorite smoothie glass and enjoy!

 

B.

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Thyme Roasted Beets w/ Lemon & Orange Zest

11/30/2015

BEETS!  You either love them or you don’t.  If you fall into the don’t category, I encourage you to give this a try!

This is the perfect recipe to add to your collection and if not, you may find a new found love for them if you give this recipe a shot.  Beets can provide the body with a wide variety of vitamins and minerals.  Specifically, dietary nitrates contained in beets have been shown to improve the efficiency of muscles during exercise.

This recipe was originally inspired from here.  {My version has a few added ingredients and omits over ½ the amount of sugar}.

Ingredients:

  • 6 large beets, washed and peeled
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary
  • ½ c balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste

Instructions:

Pre-heat oven to 400 F and line a baking sheet with tin foil.  Wash and peel beets and place on baking sheet, top with olive oil, thyme, rosemary and salt and pepper to taste.  Cover the beets with another sheet of tin foil, creating a seal and bake for 1 hour.  After 1 hour, stir beets around and test with a fork.  If the fork easily goes into the beet, they are done.  If not, continue to bake checking every 15 minutes until done.  Remove from oven and let beets cool completely.  

Meanwhile heat balsamic and sugar over high heat until it forms a syrup like consistency and remove from heat.

Once beets are cool, cut into small cubes place in serving dish.  Drizzle balsamic glaze over the beets and top with orange and lemon zest.  Serve and enjoy!

 

B.

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Winter Spinach Salad

11/30/2015

It was Small Business Saturday and after a full day of shopping and a glass of wine, I had a craving for a big ass salad. I had been experimenting with this dijon dressing for a few weeks and really wanted to try it out with a crowd, so my mom and Marcus were test subjects and they approved! Leftover turkey along side this salad made for one great meal.
This recipe is so easy to create and so good for you.  The superfood powerhouses spinach, extra virgin olive oil and walnuts give this salad credibility, while the green apple and goat cheese really bring the flavor.  If you don’t plan to eat the salad right away or want to save half for later, mix the dressing in a separate container and store in the fridge.  The dressing will last up to a week in the refrigerator in a sealed container.

Serve alongside grilled steak, chicken, salmon or serve over quinoa or eat alone as a snack!

Ingredients:

Salad:

4 c spinach

1 green apple, sliced thin

2 tbsp goat cheese

black pepper to taste


Dressing:

½ c extra virgin olive oil

¼ c rice vinegar

2 tsp dijon mustard

1 tsp grated parmesan

black pepper to taste

Instructions:

Place spinach in a large bowl.  In a small bowl combine olive oil, rice vinegar, mustard, parmesan and black pepper until ingredients are mixed well.  Pour dressing over spinach and toss until coated evenly.  Top with sliced apple, walnuts and goat cheese.

Enjoy!

B.

 

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Are You Stuck in a Salad Rut??

6/28/2015

Happy 4th of July week!  I love this time of year, longer days packed with sunshine and all things summer.  Whatever your plans are, I hope you take time to enjoy this upcoming holiday weekend with friends and family!

I've felt stuck in my typical summer salad/grilled veggie rut lately so this recipe was a fun undertaking to both create and eat!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 heads of romaine lettuce

1 c whole wheat bread crumbs

2 cloves garlic, minced

¼ c extra virgin olive oil (split between the breadcrumb mix and coating the romaine, you may have some left over)

½ tsp basil

½ tsp thyme

½ tsp oregano

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

salt & pepper to taste

Instructions:

Pre-heat grill to medium heat.  On the stovetop, sauté minced garlic in 1 tbsp olive oil until soft.  Add in breadcrumbs and herbs and another tbsp of olive oil, stir together and continue to cook over medium heat until the mix is golden brown and crisp.  Meanwhile, cut romaine heads in half lengthwise making sure to leave the stem intact.  Brush cut side of romaine with olive oil and place cut side down on the grill.  Each grill cooks different, so closely watch the romaine and remove once the cut side gets a nice crisp.

Place romaine cut side up on a plate.  Top with breadcrumb mix, season with salt and pepper if desired and drizzle balsamic vinegar over each.

Enjoy!

B

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Garlic Brussels Sprouts with Pecans & Figs

11/23/2014
Hello healthy Thanksgiving side dish, (or anytime side dish for that matter)!  This recipe was created, tasted and A+ approved in my test kitchen a few weeks ago.  Brussels sprouts are part of the cruciferous category of vegetables right along side broccoli and cabbage.  This group of vegetables are packed with antioxidants, fiber, folate, potassium and many other essential vitamins.  Brussels sprouts also contain isothiocyanates, which decrease the risk of cancer and heart attacks by eliminating carcinogens from the body.  Enough of the science talk, let's get to the point - this recipe is OUTSTANDING!  The combination of sweet and savory ingredients in this recipe are sure to be a crowd pleaser!


Ingredients:


2 lbs brussels sprouts, cut in half lengthwise
1 head of garlic, finely chopped
1/4 c pecans, chopped
10-15 dried figs, quartered lengthwise
2 tbsp organic, unrefined, coconut oil
sea salt and pepper to taste


Instructions:


Heat olive oil to medium low heat in a large skillet, meanwhile chop a full head of garlic.  Add garlic to pan and saute until it is soft and starting to brown.  Add brussels sprouts and saute for 20 minutes until medium soft.  Add in chopped pecans and figs and cook for 5-10 more minutes.  Season with sea salt and pepper to taste.

So easy, so good.  Enjoy!

B.
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Fresh Tomato Soup

11/9/2014

Temperatures have dropped and we are well into hot, comfort food season!  The change in seasons, however is no excuse to kick healthy food out the door.  The best thing about unhealthy comfort food is you can transform it into healthy by making only a few tweaks.  This is exactly what I did [no more butter or heavy cream!] with this recipe.


Ingredients:


1 tbsp olive oil
5 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 white onion, chopped
2 lbs tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 bay leaf
1/2 - 1 cup low sodium chicken stock
1 small yellow chili, diced (optional, this will add tons of heat)
2 tbsp thyme
goat cheese
sea salt and pepper to taste

 

Instructions:


Heat olive oil in sauce pan over medium heat.  Add garlic, onion and chili and saute until soft.  Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaf, thyme and chicken stock.  Simmer uncovered 20-30 minutes or until tomatoes seem soft.

Remove bay leaf and blend or process soup until smooth and simmer for another 20 minutes.  

Garnish with a dollop of goat cheese and fresh basil.

Eat up and enjoy!

B.
 
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Cucumber Herb Salsa

8/5/2014
Tired of the same old tomato salsa that is processed and comes from a jar?  It's time to take advantage of summer produce at your local farmers market and spice things up a bit!  This recipe make over will leave your taste buds feeling cool and refreshed!  The addition of cucumber, basil, parsley and mint make this a perfect option on a hot day when you don’t feel like heating up your stove.

 

What You Need:

½ cucumber, chopped
¼ red onion, chopped
4 orange cherry tomatoes, chopped
4 red cherry tomatoes, chopped
Fresh basil, parsley, mint and cilantro (a few sections of each), finely chopped
1-2 tbsp fresh lime juice
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

 

What You Do:

Chop onions and place in bowl, squeeze lime juice over onions and let sit while you chop the remaining ingredients.  I prefer to chop ingredients in bigger chunks, but if that's not for you, chop them smaller!  Place all ingredients in a bowl, mix well and season with sea salt and black pepper to taste.  Serve as a snack along side sliced peppers, avocado and tortilla chips, or as a meal along side grilled fish or chicken.

 

Enjoy!

B
 
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Who Says Waffles Can't Be Healthy?!?

5/25/2014
I have been on an experimenting kick with pancakes and waffles lately and I must say I have come up with a few fun and tasty recipes!  This one trumps the list by far and is way too good not to share with the world, (and it's even gluten free)! 


What You Need:

1 egg
1 tsp each of chia, sunflower, hemp and pumpkin seeds
3 tbsp plain, unsweetened almond milk
1 scoop of Vanilla Whey protein powder (I used Elite Whey, which is a very clean, low carb option)
1 tsp coconut oil, heated to liquid form
A few dashes of cinnamon

*This recipe makes enough for 1 waffle, so if you are cooking for more, double, triple or even quadruple as needed.


What You Do:

Pre-heat waffle iron and spray with olive oil cooking spray.  Mix egg, seeds, almond milk, whey protein and coconut oil in bowl until it makes a batter.  Add more almond milk as needed to adjust thickness.  Pour mixture into waffle iron and cook through.  Remove and top with almond butter, coconut butter, homemade jam, honey or any other topping you desire.  (I personally love a mix of coconut oil, almond butter and honey drizzled over the top).  Sprinkle with a few pumpkin and hemp seeds and serve with a side of fruit.

Enjoy!
B
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