Monthly Archives: October 2013

Lime Tequila Salmon & Blanched Broccoli w/ Vegan Cheese Sauce

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This salmon recipe is so delicious, you may even be able to trick your kids/husband, or even yourself into believing it tastes like a flavorful piece of chicken. A while back I did a lot of reading on the health benefits of salmon. I decided I needed to try and incorporate more salmon my diet. The problem was, I HATED salmon. I literally was blown away that people actually went to restaurants and ordered that. It smelled awful and I refused to eat it. I knew I had to come up with a delicious recipe to get this fish down. 2 years later I can honestly say that if I go out to eat, especially to seasons 52, I will only order their organic salmon. I make this dish at least 4 times a month. I love it so much! I really hope you will also grow to love salmon. Here are a few reasons why you should: highly concentrated in omega 3 (This is attributed to improving brain function, heart health, and joint health. There are only 2 other foods that contain higher amounts of omega 3 than salmon- flaxseeds and walnuts), heals inflammation in the digestive tract, high in selenium (which heals/prevents inflammation and certain types of cancers), and so much more!

How to choose the best salmon:

You want to always ensure that you are choosing wild, Atlantic salmon. This is proven to have the lowest amounts of mercury. If you cannot find wild, Atlantic salmon, your 2nd best bet is ORGANIC, responsibly farm raised salmon. There are very strict guidelines followed in order to ensure the salmon are not overfed rapidly, which in turns leads to high mercury contents. This is why I DO NOT order salmon at restaurants, unless it is wild, or organic.

Anyways, I think you will like this recipe. Be careful not to over cook it. It can tend to dry out easily, and then the health benefits are not as great. I serve it with a side of blanched broccoli and a vegan/GF cheese sauce over top.

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Here’s What You’ll Need: (for the salmon)

1. 2 limes
2. 2-3 Wild, Atlantic Salmon filets
3. Bill Barron’s Lime Tequila Seafood Seasoning (found at Whole Foods next to the seafood dept.)
4. 1 tspn. avocado oil

Here’s What You’ll Need: (cheese sauce)
1. 1 1/2 cup of flax milk
2. 1 cup of shredded, chedder, Daiya vegan, soy-free cheese
3. 3 tbsp. GF flour
4. 3 tbsp. Earth Balance Soy Free butter
5. A dash of salt and cayenne pepper
6. One pack of organic (fresh) broccoli… not frozen.

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Directions for Salmon:

1. Drizzle 1 tspn of avocado oil all around the salmon filets (inside a baking glass)
2. Before you cut your lime, you are going to shave the lime rind over top of the filets. You should sprinkle just enough to lightly cover the surface, see the pic below.
3.Cut one lime into wedges, and one lime in to thin slices (For a garnish later on)
4. Fork holes into the salmon, and then squeeze 2 limes over each salmon filet.
5. Then, sprinkle one tbsp. of the Lime Tequila seasoning over top of the 3 salmon filets. Do a little less if you are only doing two. Do 1/2 tbsp. for only one salmon filet.
6. Broil the salmon in the oven for aprox. 10-12 minutes. At about 6 minutes, I take it out, and scrape off the skin. I put it back into the oven for the remaining time.

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           Directions for the Cheesy Broccoli :

1. Wash the head of broccoli and cut into desired pieces.
2. Steam cook for 5 minutes.
3. Toss the broccoli directly into the ice bath waiting. This prevents it from cooking longer. (Keep your broccoli crunchy- higher nutrition)
4. After 30 seconds, drain the broccoli and place in a dish until ready to be served.

5. Start preparing your cheese sauce by preparing a double broiler, or a pot on LOW heat.
6. Add all of the ingredients listed above and stir often- with a fork or wisk, until all the lumps are gone.
7. Pour the boiling hot cheese sauce directly over the broccoli. Serve with the salmon. Squeeze a dash more lime juice over top of the salmon and garnish with the pretty lime slice.

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ENJOY!!!

<>< Kaitlin

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Raw Almond Butter Protein Balls

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Vegan, raw, almond butter protein balls that will rock your world!

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I was so excited to make these, I had my good friend Brigitte come and help me. 🙂 These protein balls are so delicious, and good for you! I have adapted this recipe from another paleo website. I hope you will enjoy these. They are rich too! You will be satisfied with just one! 🙂 They are extremely high in protein, raw, vegan, gluten free, have a low glycemic index, and are filled with super nutrients. 🙂 I specifically chose the ingredients in here because they are all low in sugar. Carob chips, coconut nectar, and unsweetened cocoa powder all offer a delicious, nutritious alternative to the junk filled in most protein bars. They’re such a delicious treat and even healthy enough to eat for breakfast! 🙂

Ingredients to serve 20:briNi

1 cup of almond butter
1.5 cups of unsweetened shredded coconut (and another 1/4 cup to garnish later)
2 scoops of chocolate Life’s Basics Plant Protein powder.
10 dried black figs, stems removed
1/2 cup of carob chips (less sugar & fat than chocolate, and higher in vitamins)
1/4 cup of ground flax seed
1 tbsp. chia seeds
2 tbsp. coconut nectar (has a low glycemic index)
2 tbsp. raw honey (or you could use 4 tbps. of honey instead of coconut nectar)
2 tbsp. unsweetened organic cocoa powder
1 tspn. vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
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Directions:

Put the figs, shredded coconut, and almond butter in a food processor first.
Let all the ingredients blend until smooth.
In another bowl, add all of the other dry ingredients.
Then, pour the moist mixture into the bowl with all the dry ingredients.
Mix everything together until smooth.

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Form little circular shapes with the mixture, and then roll in a bowl of shredded coconut.
Lay the protein balls onto a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Refrigerate for one hour.
Then, ENJOY!!!

 

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Enjoy,

<>< Kaitlin

Kabocha Squash Bake

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Kabocha Squash Bake:

I love walking into the grocery store and seeing all of the pumpkins and winter squash on display. I decided to buy a bunch of different squash and create some fun, yummy recipes. While I was there I picked up a carton of this organic, yummy soup. It got my taste buds going to town! If you do not have a local whole foods or health store, I would order this on Amazon. Not only is it a yummy, healthy soup, but it is AMAZING to cook with.

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Here a few reasons why I am super excited about this squash. First, Kabocha Squash tastes like butternut squash, but one cup of kabocha has forty calories compared to butternut squash’s 60; and it has less than half of the carbs of butternut squash (7 grams vs. 16 grams). I also this it tastes better. It contains tons of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and beta carotene. What’s cool is that you can also eat the skin. For this recipe, I peel the skin off.

Here is what you’ll need:

1 Kabocha Squash
2 cups of Pacific Cashew Carrot Ginger Soup
2
organic chicken breasts
2 cups of organic brown rice
2 cups of chopped spinach
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

Directions:
1. Cut the squash in half, remove seeds, and bake face down at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
2. In a separate pan, cook the chicken breasts with a dash of salt and pepper.
3. When the squash is finished, peel the skin off with a sharp knife. Cut the squash into cubes and cover the pan. kob3
4. Next, pour 1 cup of the soup over top of the squash and place back in the oven for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees.

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5. When the chicken is finished, cut into small chunks, add the two cups of cooked brown rice to the pan. Add the other 1 cup of the carrot ginger soup to the chicken and rice mixture. Add the tsp of cayenne pepper.
6. Add the chopped spinach to the chicken and rice mixture. Mix all the ingredients together in the pan.
7. Spread the chicken and rice mixture over top of the squash. Mix all the ingredients together in the pan, and bake for 5 minutes at 350.

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This is such a yummy dish, and I promise it’s easy!! 🙂 It is such an amazing fall dish. It tastes like FALL ON A PLATE!!!! 🙂

ENJOY,

<>< Kaitlin

Moist, Healthy, GF Pumpkin Bread

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Okay, I am not kidding when I say that this bread literally melts in your mouth. I decided to play around with some healthy ingredients, and whip up this healthy pumpkin bread. I usually always bake with Pamela’s GF baking mix. It’s easy and I love following the basic recipes on the back. I am actually blogging while on my way to Jacksonville.  So, I will keep it short. 🙂

Basically,  I’m not going to bake something in the regular, unhealthy version…ever!  My mind immediately starts thinking of how I can make it healthy! With that said, I refuse to cook with regular sugar! Coconut sugar is the most perfect sugar substitute. It has a perfect 1 to 1 equivalency.  Stevia is too bitter to bake with, and sugar is filled with empty calories that causes weight gain, along with many other harmful effects on your body. Coconut sugar contains Inulin. This fiber slows glucose absorption. This is why coconut sugar has a much lower glycemic index. It won’t cause a major blood sugar spike; forcing your body to spit out tons of insulin.

This is why I choose to bake with coconut sugar.

Also, I added a scoop of my vegan protein blend to the mixture. I lile

Here’s what you’ll need to make this scrumptious bread:

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1 cup of Pamela’s GF baking mix

2 eggs

4 tbsp of melted Earth Balance (soy free) butter

16 oz. Organic canned pumpkin

1 cup of coconut sugar

1/3 cup chopped walnuts

1 1/2tbsp pumpkin pie spice

1 tbsp ground flax seeds

1/2 scoop of vegan vanilla protein powder (I like Vega One)

 

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Directions: Mix all ingredients with a hand blender. Pour in to a greased bread pan. Sprinkle 1/2 tspn of coconut sugar over top, and 1 tsp. of cinnamon over top. Sprinkle a few more chopped walnuts over top to make it pretty. 🙂

Bake at 350 for 25 minute, or until golden brown.

Enjoy!!!

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Energizing Greens Smoothie

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green4  I wake up every single morning at 5:30 am. I don’t have to wake up that early, but I choose to because the extra time I get to prepare my meals, shakes, take my vitamins, drink my detoxifying lemon water, etc are all so important. In fact, I know that if I chose to sleep in a little bit later, I would actually be much more tired throughout the day. As a teacher, I get to compare my energy levels with the kids on a daily basis. The days when I take the time to make this shake for myself, I am a completely different person! It blows my mind away!! Do yourself the BIGGEST favor, set your alarm a few minutes early and take the time to make this shake. You will not regret it.  The health and energy this shake provides are so worth it!

So, why do I put these certain ingredients in my shake? I’m glad you asked! 🙂 First of all, I obviously want it to taste yummy. I love my greens first thing in the AM, and it helps when you have a creative way to make it yummy. First and foremost I put kale, and spinach in the shake. Kale is being called the “queen of nutrition” or the “powerhouse of nutrition.” The anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory benefits this little green leaf offer are proof to me that there is a God! 🙂 How can that be an accident? 🙂 Anyways…..It is really high in vitamin k, iron, fiber, magnesium… the list goes on. This little green leaf is known to help with arthritis, Alzheimer’s, asthma, bone health, cholesterol levels,… the list just goes on and on. I change up the type of kale I buy too. Sometimes I buy green kale, sometimes black kale. They all offer amazing benefits. Spinach is like Kale’s sister. 🙂 They both are incredibly high in nutrients.

As stated in a prior blog…Chia Seeds: 1. Prevents blood sugar spikes (natural treatment for type 2 diabetes) 2. Tons of Fiber 3. Great source of omega-3 (important for brain health 4. High in calcium and manganese 5. High in protein 6. Gets rid of belly fat 7. Keeps you full 8. Healthier Heart 9. Reduced blood pressure 10. Hydration

The ENERGIZING part of this shake is the Maca. Man, I could run marathons on the days I take this. PS: I do not notice the same benefits when I take the capsules. When I put a teaspoon in my shakes, I seriously do not need coffee.

Maca Powder: I like to call this amazing stuff, “Miracle Powder.” It naturally provides the body with energy, without caffeine. Aside from the fact that it’s PACKED with minerals and vitamins; Maca powder helps to naturally balance the hormone levels in our body. Girls, this powder is amazing for helping with PMS and menopause. I will warn you though, you only need 1 teaspoon a day, preferably before 4:00 pm. More is not better with Maca.

Next, I put one scoop of vegan, vanilla protein powder in. I do this to help me sustain hunger, keep me full, boost my metabolism, build muscle mass, shed fat, AND the protein powder itself is also packed with nutrients. Check out the Vega One protein powders. I am REALLY loving them!

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Here’s what you’ll need to make this shake:

2 Kale leaves pulled a part into smaller pieces
One handful of spinach
1 teaspoon of Maca Powder
1 Scoop of VegaOne protein powder
1 teaspoon of Chia Seeds
2 cups of water
1 cup of ice
1 orange (peeled)
1/2 banana
3 pineapple chunks

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PS: It makes ALOT: I put the leftovers in a sealed Mason Jar and bring it to work with me. I keep it in the fridge and drink it in the afternoon. 🙂

green1  Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!!! 🙂

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(Dairy Free) Greek Chicken

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I absolutely love Greek, Mediterranean food. I love Greek salads etc. I really try to avoid ALL dairy though. This chicken dish is one of those dishes that you crave, and can’t wait to cook again next week. What I love about this is that it is SUPER EASY to make. I am ALL for easy dishes that require very minimal maintenance. 🙂 Organicville makes a sun-dried tomato and garlic dressing. I use this in my cooking ALL the time. It makes for a yummy dish!!! 🙂photo

You might notice that I pretty much add garlic into every dish I make. According to an article in the Huffington Post,
“Some scientists believe the components in onions and garlic called allyl sulfides and bioflavonoids may be key to the research observations of generally lower incidence of cancer and heart disease in people who consume large amounts of garlic and onions, compared with those who eat less.” Garlic is an incredible detox and is so worth the stinky breath you might endure. 🙂 PS: I switched to Neem toothpaste (you can buy on Amazon) and I never have garlic breath! Neem oil is proven to prevent bad breath and healthy gums. Anyways… on to our yummy dish….

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

2 organic chicken breasts, and some organic dark meat (optional-makes it juicier 😉 (2-3 thighs)
1 1/2 cups of Sundried Tomato & Garlic by Organicville
12 chopped kalamata olives
1/4 tspn of chopped red pepper
2 FRESH garlic cloves chopped or minced
Dash of Salt and Pepper

Serve with butternut squash: you will need one squash.

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Directions: 1. Butterfly your chicken breasts, or cut them right down the middle to make them thinner. 2. Pour the sundried tomato dressing over top of the chicken. 3. Add the chopped garlic and olives. 4. Sprinkle the crushed red pepper over top and a dash of salt and pepper.

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In another pan, I place the butternut squash, face down in the oven. I remove the seeds before I cook. I also sprinkle salt and pepper over top of the squash, and spread a tiny layer of Earth Balance soy free butter over top.

Bake at 400 for 25 minutes.

Voila! Easy Peasy dinner that will melt in your mouth!!

 

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<>< Kaitlin