After years of resistance, I’ve finally jumped on board the smoothie trend. In my ongoing attempt to eat healthier, I’ve found that smoothies are a sneaky way to have vegetables for breakfast and love them. Skeptical? So was I, but when you blend them with fruit or other flavorings, you really can barely taste the vegetables. (Notice I said “barely.” If you don’t want to taste them at all, you’re going to have to use added sweeteners, which I’m not down with, so “barely” is a good enough compromise for me.)
This beet-berry smoothie is an absolutely gorgeous color, thanks to the anthocyanins that lend both hue and health (preventing inflammation, cancer, heart disease, and diabetes). Beets also contain nitrate, which not only helps with heart disease but has been found to improve running performance. Veggies that make me a faster runner? Yes, please! Continue reading
Even though there’s a good three weeks before the official start of fall, summer’s been winding down for a while now, and for most people, this weekend marks the end of the summer grilling season. If you’re hosting or attending one last cookout this weekend and looking for an extra side dish, have I got a salad for you. Continue reading
Yesterday, my husband and I started a dietary cleanse for the New Year. After more than a month of less-than-healthy holiday eating, it seemed like a great idea. But then we chose to base ours off the concept of the Daniel Diet, an extremely restrictive cleanse that allows no meat, dairy, refined carbs, leavened breads, sugars of any kind (even the healthy ones, like honey and molasses), caffeine, and alcohol. Instead, you eat legumes, whole grains, vegetables, and fruits. You’re supposed to do it for three weeks, which I thought would be easy-peasy. I used to nearly eat that way before as a flexitarian, and anything could be done for three weeks, right? Plus I love a good challenge, and new diets and recipes are always good blog fodder.
Today, I quit the cleanse. Continue reading
I’ve had baked oatmeal on my “to try” list ever since I saw a tweet about it last fall. Baked oatmeal? I’d never heard of such a thing. Usually food novelties pique my interest to the point of obsession, and this was no exception. After quickly Googling the term—and pausing to drool over some pretty gorgeous photos—I realized that this was something I’d simply have to make. Continue reading
If you haven’t noticed, I’ve been trying to take advantage of healthier foods lately, and what better way than to cut back on meat? By now, you may have heard of Meatless Mondays, a movement encouraging Americans to cut out meat one day a week. If Mario Batali can do it, why not the rest of us?
Two meatless superfoods that have recently become popular are quinoa and kale. Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is a complex carbohydrate that looks like a grain but is actually a seed. Aside from the usual health rewards of whole-grain carbs (high in antioxidants, minerals, and fiber), quinoa has the added benefit of being a rare, excellent source of plant-based complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids. And I’ve already hopefully sold you on the benefits of kale when I used it in my lentil soup. Continue reading
Everyone should have a quick, easy, basic tomato sauce recipe in their cooking repertoire, and this is mine. Seriously, stop buying jarred, premade tomato sauce. You don’t have to when making tomato sauce is this easy. Keep a batch of this recipe on hand in the freezer, and you’ll always be ready to turn it into a meal: spaghetti and meatballs, pizza, lasagna, and more. Continue reading
Many cultures have various traditions and superstitions when it comes to the foods served in the first hours or day of the New Year. The best and luckiest of foods to eat, they say, will help you to live long and prosper in the coming year.
Most of the traditions surround foods that symbolize money in the hopes that the New Year will bring promises of new wealth. Greens are popular because of their similarity to stacks of green paper money. Flat beans, like lentils, symbolize the rich wealth of coins. That traditional pork and sauerkraut you’ve served every January 1 in memory? The cabbage (sauerkraut) represents money, clearly, but the pork also has significance: pigs are not only robust, sturdy creatures (and the wealthiest of folks in history were also fairly robust), but when they root in the ground with their snouts, it is always in a forward direction, symbolizing a year of progress and moving forward.
And so today, I bring you a recipe that should theoretically offer you riches in the coming year, based on tradition: lentil soup. Continue reading