Friday, February 28, 2014

Foodie Friday #1

Spicy Tuna Roll at The Yardhouse in Pasadena, CA

Cali Wrap at Eat Real Cafe in Valencia, CA

Tropical Smoothie at Grassroots Natural Market in South Pasadena, CA

Avocado Tartine at Le Pain Quotidien in Glendale, CA

Lentil & Barley Soup made by me!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Lentil & Barley Soup

A hearty bowl of homemade soup sure does have a special way of warming the soul. There's nothing more comforting than sitting on the couch in your pj's chowing down on lentil soup while watching your favorite shows. And, that's exactly what I did today! So, I'd like to share my new recipe for a lentil & barley soup so you, too, can relax and unwind.

Lentil & Barley Soup 
This recipe is easy to prepare and easy to please. It is nutrient-dense so you can be rest assured you're serving up one wholesome meal. 


1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1 medium onion
32 oz low-sodium vegetable broth
2 cup lentils, dry
1 cup barley, dry
2 cups spinach, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp salt


1. Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add the garlic and onion and cook until brown.
2. Pour the vegetable broth into the pot and let cook for 10 minutes.
3. Add the lentils, barley, and vegetables. Let cook until soft. Add water as needed.
4. Season with salt, pepper, and turmeric.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

{Recipe Redux} PB + Banana + Chia Seed Smoothie

Beverages Are Hot.

This was the February 2014 Recipe Redux theme. And, it's true! A variety of beverage recipes are popping up everywhere on social media from smoothies to teas to drinks with an alcoholic punch. 

PB + Banana + Chia Seed Smoothie 

My recipe for a peanut butter, banana, and chia seed smoothie is perfect as a filling snack or nutritious breakfast. It is packed with protein to help you refuel after a challenging workout  and keep you satisfied all day long. 


3/4 cup greek yogurt
1 cup skim milk
1 large frozen banana
2 tbsp peanut butter
3 tbsp chia seeds
1 tsp honey


Combine bananas, yogurt, milk, peanut butter, and chia seeds in a blender. Blend until smooth and add ice as needed. Top off with a drizzle of honey. Serve!

Serves 2

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Whole Grain Crepes: Banana & Chocolate


Crepes bring back a lot of childhood memories for me. It all started at a small cafe in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware on a family vacation. The menu consisted of nothing but crepes. I chose one stuffed with strawberries and dripping with chocolate. I loved watching the chef swirl the batter onto the skillet and create a perfectly flat pancake. It was...Good. No. Delicious. No. Outstanding! Compliments to the chef! Every family vacation since has featured a stop (at least one) to a quaint crepe cafe.

The best part about crepes is that they can be savory or sweet. You can fill them with just about anything giving you the delightful option of having them for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Stuff em' with veggies, eggs, cheese, or fruit and you've got yourself one heck of a pancake.

In this recipe I used whole grain brown rice flour, but you can use any type of whole grain flour you like best. The bananas can be substituted with any fruit as well! Either way, they're sure to be delicious!


For the batter:
3/4 cup whole grain flour
1 cup skim milk
1 egg (beaten) + 1 eggwhite
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt

For the filling:
1 large banana, sliced
2 tbsp raw walnuts, halved
2 tbsp dark chocolate chips

1. Heat olive oil in large skilled over medium heat.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, milk, and beaten eggs.
3. Add cinnamon and salt and stir until smooth.
4. Pour batter onto a large skillet and swirl until batter covers the bottom.
5. Cook until the underside is just golden brown. Add the filling and fold the crepe then cut it in half.

Serve with maple syrup and fresh fruit!

Serves 2

Saturday, February 8, 2014

{Pistachio Pairings} Popcorn, Chocolate Chips, and Iced Mint Tea

In-shell Pistachios + food A + food B + drink c = mmmmmmmm

This was the guide for this month's Recipe Redux sponsored contest - Pairing Pistachios. In-shell pistachios are a necessity in my house. My entire family is obsessed and can be frequently seen laying in bed with a heaping bowl of pistachios. Multiple trips to the grocery store each week have been made solely on the basis of stocking up on pistachios. My dad is notorious for hiding his own stash downstairs so the rest of us don't eat them all. Not to mention the shells are my cats favorite toy by far.

A recent study found that people who consumed in-shell pistachios ate 41 percent fewer calories than those who consumed pistachios without shells. This suggests that empty shells may be a helpful visual cue as to how much has been eaten – thereby potentially encouraging reduced calorie consumption.

In-shell pistachios are the greatest snack in my book. They're healthy, convenient, and can be paired with just about anything. And I mean anything. For example, here is my skinny nut/reduced calorie pistachio pairing:

“By posting this pairing I am entering a contest sponsored by Pistachio Health Institute and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

In-shell Pistachios + Popcorn + Chocolate Chips + Iced Mint Tea = mmmmmmm

{In this pairing, I used air-popped popcorn, dark chocolate chips, and an unsweetened mint iced tea.}


Thursday, February 6, 2014

Coconut Oil: The Real Deal

It has been commonly believed that the consumption of foods containing saturated fats are dangerous to one’s health. In past years, the media has demonized saturated fats for their negative health consequences. Foods containing high amounts of saturated fat have been linked to an increase in cholesterol levels and have contributed to the development of obesity and heart disease. However, recent studies propose some specific types of saturated fats may not be damaging to health at all, such as those found in coconut oil.

Coconut oil has provided therapeutic uses for thousands of years in the tropical regions of Asia. These populations who have diets high in coconut oil have been found to have a lower incidence of diseases than populations of the West.  Coconut oil is comprised of lauric acid, a medium chain fatty acid which differentiates coconut oil from other foods containing saturated fat, such as meat poultry, and eggs. The majority of these products consist of long chain fatty acids which are more difficult for the body to digest and absorb. Research has shown these medium chain fatty acids are metabolized differently than long chain fatty acids and may provide health benefits rather than detriments.

Virgin and extra-virgin coconut oils seem to be the safest choices among coconut oil products. These products are unrefined and extracted directly from the fresh coconut. I love to use coconut oil in my pancakes, cookies, and other baked goods. Nothing tastes better than memories of laying under the sun!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Bite Size Peanut Butter & Dark Chocolate Cookies

Peanut Butter + Chocolate = Perfection

It's a simple equation.

I remember when peanut butter companies first started mixing chocolate into the jar. The next thing I knew I had taken one too many spoonfuls. Since then it's been difficult to have one without the other. The best part is you never have to worry about having just the peanut butter, or just the chocolate ever again. This cookie dough combination is packed with protein and antioxidants making one sweet cookie.

This cookie dough uses brown rice flour which is great for those of you following a gluten-free diet. Everyone can take a bite out of this delicious treat!

1 1/4 cup brown rice flour (or any whole grain flour)
1/2 cup vanilla soymilk
4 tablespoons peanut butter, unsalted
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter, unsalted
1 egg
1 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
3. Add in the egg, milk, butter and sugar. Stir well.
4. Add the remaining ingredients to the dough and mix thoroughly.
5. Spoon small balls of dough onto a nonstick baking pan. Let cookies bake for approximately 25-30 minutes.

Serve warm with a glass of cold milk!

Makes 15 bite-size cookies
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...