Archive for April, 2010

You’re Pregnant- Now What?

April 30, 2010

Come one come all to Citibabes Prenatal Event next Saturday, May 8th.  Join me as I jump in and spew my genius during a nutrition panel along with GiGi Chan of Plum Organics and Latham Thomas of Tender Shoots Wellness.

The detes are here http://bit.ly/b1le5T

See you there

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Everything is better on a stick

April 29, 2010

The weather is getting warmer and you know what that means…well, yes, it means inappropriate belly shirts and sweaty subway rides, but more importantly, it means popsicles!

I have such great memories of summers at the Jersey Shore (before the Snookie and Situation invasion) on the beach, my face and hands stained blue from all of the color dyes and artificial flavorings crammed into my all time favorite Rocket Pops.

So now that we know how bad all those ingredients are for us, what to do? Simple, you make your own pops and you make them not only nutritious but fun to eat too. All you need are some BPA free molds and an imagination. I’m assuming you’ve got the latter. The molds can be found at http://tovolo.com/. You can choose from shooting stars, rocket pops, groovy pops, dual layer pops and even freezer gems. So cool.

Let your imagination soar as you put together nutritious and delicious combinations that your kids and all their friends will dig (yep, this will put you firmly in contention for coolest mom of the year).

Check out http://icypops.com/ for some more inspiration and grab a copy of Pops! Icy Treats For Everyone by Krystina Castella, a great selection of healthy pop recipes at http://amzn.to/a5kKTX.

To get you started, here’s her recipe for Honeydew Melon Pops:

4 cups diced ripe honeydew melon

1/3 cup plain yogurt(organic please)

Juice of 3 limes

Grated zest of 1 lime

3 tsp of honey

1. Put 2 cups of melon, the yogurt and lime juice and zest in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.

2. Add the honey and blend again.

3. Stir in the remaining 2 cups of melon

4. Fill the pop molds with the mixture and freeze for at least 6 hours

5. Remove from the freezer. Let stand for 5 minutes before removing the pops from the mold.

Serve and enjoy!

Finally, a global movement that involves waffles.

April 28, 2010

I just discovered a new movement whose mission is to promote  friendlier healthier, and more sustainable living. Through waffles.

The Global Vegan Waffle Party was born in 2008. They’re a great resource for vegan waffle recipes (yep, they exist and they’re good – just look at my husband asleep at the breakfast table, drooling like an eight month old). There are a whole bunch of local waffle party events around the country and you’re more than welcome to host your own, or you can join in the Third Annual Global Vegan Waffle Party on May 29th.

You can get a boatload of recipes here, http://bit.ly/cNOKnG, and to get you started, here’s their recipe for Naked Vegan Waffles (*ahem* the waffles are naked, not the Vegan)

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 cups soymilk
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar

Sift or whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Mix the soymilk, canola oil, and brown sugar in a medium bowl. Pour the soymilk mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until blended. Cook on a waffle iron for 3 to 5 minutes, generously spraying both grills with oil before each waffle. Makes 4 (7-inch) round Belgian waffles.

The Petit Appetit is a big hit

April 27, 2010

So, I have a new favorite cookbook, The Petit Appetit cookbook – easy Organic Recipes to Nurture Your Baby and Toddler by Lisa Barnes.  The book concentrates on kids 4 months to 4 years, and is full of delicious, nutritious recipes for kids of all ages.

What I really like about The Petit Appetit is her emphasis on fresh, organic food and making mealtimes and cooking not only fun but educational.  There is also valuable information on food storage, food safety and pantry must-have items. And you’ll find egg-free, gluten-free, wheat-free, vegetarian and vegan recipes that will not disappoint.

Lisa splits up the sections by age starting with “The Beginners” (4-6 months) and then moves on the “The Explorers” (6-9 months) and ends with “The Connoisseurs” (3-4 years).  I just made her Cereal Batons and my husband ate them like “The Animals.”

Get your copy here… http://amzn.to/cogYhi

It’s Meatless Monday! What’s for breakfast?

April 26, 2010

My family is pretty lucky. Every morning I arise earlier than I really have to just to make them a delicious homemade nutritious breakfast.  Now, I’m sure they appreciate my tireless pursuit of sainthood, but to be honest I am sick and tired of the clean-up.  They’re usually off to work and school before me, so guess who gets stuck with the dishes? (ahem) Yep, me.

So, I have been racking my brain to come up with breakfast ideas that require little or no clean-up. Which is why I got so excited when I found this delish recipe for Chocolate Chip Banana Bread in Living Vegan for Dummies, from one of my favorite vegans, Alexandra Jamieson (http://bit.ly/di1mUx)

Great for breakfast, snack time or anytime, all you have to do is just slice and go.

BTW, Living Vegan for Dummies is a mmmmmmust have book for anyone interested in becoming vegan or for vegans who want to create a healthy and balanced diet, collect invaluable tips for eating out and traveling as well as expand their cooking repertoire with some kick ass vegan recipes.

Yeah, I said it. Kick ass.

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

2 large overripe bananas

6 tablespoons soy, rice or hemp milk

2/3 cup agave syrup

1/3 cup canola oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

¾ teaspoon salt

½ cup vegan chocolate chips

1 cup whole wheat or spelt flour

1 cup unbleached white, whole wheat, or spelt flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350.  Lightly oil a 9-inch loaf pan.  In a medium mixing bowl, mash together the bananas, milk, agave, oil, vanilla, and salt.  Stir in the chocolate chips.

In a large mixing bowl, sift the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Pour the banana and chocolate chip mixture into the flour mixture and stir with a spatula until just blended.  Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 40-45 m inutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Cool for 15 minutes before removing from the pan and serving.

Buckets for the Cure?

April 23, 2010

Susan G. Komen foundation has lent it’s support to the cause of increasing obesity, heart disease and animal cruelty in America by funding the KFC “Buckets for the Cure” program. KFC will be selling pink buckets of chicken and pledging fifty cents to Komen for every pink bucket ordered by restaurant operators during the promotion period.

Now, this makes as much sense as asking Paula Abdul for help with your math homework.

Don’t get me wrong, the foundation has done tons of great work. They’ve raised millions and millions of dollars in their fight to cure breast cancer. They fund research projects and experiment with new treatments. They tirelessly counsel those diagnosed, bringing them one of the most precious things for someone stricken – hope. I can’t say enough good things about all of their accomplishments. And the cause is near and dear to my heart. I watched my mother courageously battle this insidious disease for 10 hard years. That said, let me just dramatically raise my eyebrows and ask a few painfully obvious questions…

Really? There’s no other way to get the word out? It’s got be through, factory-farmed, antibiotic and steroid laden, fried chicken? (FYI, fried foods have been linked to all sorts of wonderful cancers like kidney and ovarian. So the partnership makes total sense. No, wait…)

The underlying message of the campaign is eat some cancer causing foods so we can find a cure for cancer and cure the cancer you got from trying to help us cure cancer.

Uh huh. I think I’ll stick with Komen’s Race for a Cure, thanks.

I heart sticks and twigs. And so will you.

April 22, 2010

So the biscotti are done and I’ve moved on to a new favorite treat.  What if I told you there was an organic, kosher, non-gmo, whole grain, vegan, dairy/wheat/hydrogenated oil/gluten-free pretzely thing made with organic brown rice, quinoa, flax seeds, sesame seeds, amaranth, and millet .  Would you also believe it is delicious?

Introducing my latest love – Stick and Twigs from Mary’s Gone Crackers. Delish and good for you. Now you know.

Oh, and make sure you look out for my next blog , “I’m off  to Mary’s Gone Crackers” rehab.

And now for some self-promotion

April 21, 2010

Do you ever want to try and change the world but just don’t have the energy? A march can be too taxing. Writing your congressman – who has the time? Isn’t it enough that I wash my foil before I recycle it?

No. But that doesn’t mean you have to actually leave the house to make a difference.

Take a stand without getting out of your Snuggie by going to MMMunchmerch.com. Yep, we’ve got merch. Sexy t-shirts and adorable onesies. They’re your chance to tell the world that you believe in grassfed beef, organic food, eating locally and super cute babies. Who could be against super cute babies? That would be like Oprah being against ratings. Or Kate Gosselin being against publicity. It just doesn’t make sense.

All MMMunch Merch is 100% organic for that smooth, smug feel and scientists have proven they make you look ten years younger. Except the onesies. They’re just super cute.

Come on, do your part. And tell your friends.

MMMunchMerch.com

Attention! I have something very important to disc- What’s that, there’s biscotti? Hold, please.

April 20, 2010

I was all set to write about the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act today. It’s an important piece of legislation that affects each and every one of us. And it merits a serious and thoughtful discussion.

But just can’t get the biscotti I made last night out of my mind.

Oh well. So, let’s talk about polenta biscotti.  Yep, po-len-ta. Doesn’t really sound that great, but truth be told, it’s fantastic.  Not too sweet but definitely sweet enough, just the right amount of crunch and not half bad for you.  Funny, you could say the exact same thing about my husband.

The recipe is below. Don’t be put off by what looks like a lot of steps.  They are super easy to make. Enjoy polenta biscotti in the morning, for a midday treat or for a little snacky-poo after school. And another perk – kids love them.

FYI, polenta biscotti are pretty low in calories, if you can eat just a few. My “few” happened to be the entire batch.  I can’t stop noshing on them.  As I write this I am wiping away the crumbs still left on my computer.

p.s. Did you know biscotti is plural?  The singular is biscotto. But who eats biscotto? Not me.

Polenta Biscotti

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat)

1 cup sugar

½ cup fine cornmeal, or polenta

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

3 large eggs

2 tablespoons of canola oil or mild flavored olive oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preparation

  1. Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of oven, preheat to 325 and coat two large baking sheets with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk flour, sugar, cornmeal (or polenta), baking powder and salt in a large bowl.  Whisk eggs, oil and vanilla in another bowl until frothy and well combined.  Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir with a spoon until a soft dough forms.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured work surface.  Divide it in half and shape each half into a log 12 inches long by 2 inches wide. (I had my daughter measure)  Brush off excess flour and place the logs on one baking sheet.
  4. Bake the logs on the upper rack until almost firm when pressed on top 20 to 25 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan for 20 minutes; reduce the oven temperature to 300.
  5. Place the logs on a cutting board and slice diagonally into ½ inch thick slices using a serrated knife.  Divide the biscotti between the two baking sheets, standing them up about 1 inch apart.
  6. Return the biscotti to the oven and bake until lightly colored and dry 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool(the biscotti will crisp as they cool)

Recipe from EatingWell.com

It’s Meatless Monday! And we’ve got lasagna.

April 19, 2010

One of my favorite past times is to go out with friends for Italian and throw back some red wine.  But with bathing suit season looming dangerously close, I try to stay away from heavier dishes and choose lighter fare (although a little organic red wine never hurt anyone). So here’s the great news. I found a delicious, meatless, gluten-free recipe for lasagna – in Martha Stewart Magazine of all places – that won’t go straight to my thighs but still tastes like the real thing. Dig in.

Zucchini-Ribbon Lasagna

For The Sauce ( makes 3 cups)

1 can (28 ounces) whole peeled plum tomatoes, with juice

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 small onion, finely chopped (1 cup)

¼ teaspoon red-pepper flakes

2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano

2 teaspoons coarse salt

For the Lasagna

2 medium zucchini, trimmed

1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese

¼ teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Freshly ground pepper

Garnish: Fresh oregano

  1. Make the sauce: Pulse tomatoes with juice in a food processor until finely chopped.  Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Cook onion and red-pepper flakes, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender, about 8 minutes.  Add tomatoes; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer until thick, about 20 minutes.  Stir in oregano and salt.  Let cool.
  2. Make the lasagna: Preheat oven to 375.  Slice the zucchini lengthwise into thin strips.  Place 5 or 6 zucchini slices, overlapping slightly, in the bottom of an 8-inch square baking dish.  Top with 1 cup sauce.  Dot with ¼ cup ricotta.  Repeat twice with zucchini, remaining sauce, and ½ cup ricotta, alternating direction of zucchini.  Top with remainingzucchini, alternating direction; brush with oil.  Dot with remaining ¼ cup ricotta.  Season with pepper.  Bake, uncovered, until lasagna bubbles and top browns, 50-60 minutes.  Let stand for 10 minutes.  Garnish with oregano.