Blog Archives

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Orange and Lentil Soup

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Ok, guys.  It has been awhile since I’ve posted.  Christmas has come and gone and there is probably a good foot and a half of snow in my backyard…which makes me want to be warm.  What better way to warm up than with a yummy soup.  This recipe I found on Allrecipe.com.  As you know I had to make a couple modifications to make it healthier.  Here is my version:

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons organic cold pressed coconut oil
  • 1 organic onion, diced
  • 2/3 cup red lentils
  • 1/2 cup organic orange juice (about 2 oranges in juicer)
  • 1 organic stalk of celery, chopped
  • 1 organic carrot, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon organic dried thyme
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 cups organic chicken broth, divided
  • 1 Tablespoon of ginger juice (grate root on a medium cheese grater and squeeze the juice out of the grated root)

Directions

  1. In a pot over medium heat, cook onions in oil until softened. Stir in lentils, orange juice , celery, carrot, bay leaf, thyme, ginger juice, pepper and half the chicken broth and simmer 40 minutes, until lentils are tender.
  2. Puree in a blender or food processor. Return to the pot, stir in remaining chicken broth and heat through.

Makes about 4 servings.  I paired it with organic sourdough bread.  Oh My!  It was so yummy!  Sharing it makes me want to go make more.  Hope you all enjoy it as much as I did.

 

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Baked Chicken fajitas

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One of my favorite new things is to find recipes on Pinterest.  I have been wanting to experiment with using herbs.  I love Mexican food.  This recipe called for 4 different herbs.  When I stumbled upon it it appeared to be the perfect fit for my first herb cooking experiment!  I don’t mean to toot my own horn…but…I have never seen my boyfriend look so pleased with my cooking! And I consider myself a really good cook.  I think it was a success! It was really easy to make.

I modified the ingredients a bit from the original recipe to make it fit my eating habits.  I used fresh peppers and tomatoes (original recipe called for canned chilies and tomatoes) from my garden [so sad it is fall and I won’t have 24/7 access to the fresh produce of a summer garden ;( ] an organic onion, 2 organic chicken breasts, coconut oil (instead of vegetable oil) and organic herbs. The only thing that I couldn’t have 100% fresh and organic was the tortillas so I did the best I could with making sure the ingredients on the packaging did not include any enriched or bleached flour or corn.  I was able to find some yellow corn tortillas. That seemed to be the healthiest I would be able to find.  All products not picked from my garden were purchased at Sprouts Farmers Market.  I have found this store to carry high quality local organic produce that doesn’t break the bank.

Baked Chicken Fajitas Recipe:
Makes 8 Fajitas

1 pound boneless, skinless, organic chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 large beefsteak tomato
2 orange chilies
1 medium organic onion, sliced
1 large green bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 large red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
2 T organic coconut oil
2 t. organic chili powder
2 t. organic cumin
1/2 t. organic garlic powder
1/2 t. organic dried oregano
1/4 t. real salt
8 yellow corn tortillas, warmed to serve

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Combine oil and spices in a bowl. Add chicken to mixture. In a 13×9 baking dish mix together chicken, tomatoes, chilies, peppers, and onions.

Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.

Warm tortillas in a dry skillet and enjoy!

Writers note: I mixed all the ingredients in the dish about midday and covered it in the frig then pulled it out when I was ready to cook at night.

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Buying local

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Last weekend I made a trip to my local farmer’s market to get fresh produce for my weekly green smoothie making sesh.

I was so happy to see that peaches are in full season.  I have fond memories of going over to my grandma’s as a kid to pick peaches off of her peach tree.  Not only did we have a plethora of peaches for snacks while they were harvesting but she would can them for us to enjoy all year long.  Peaches played a big role in my life growing up.

Other than peaches I bought nectarines, pears, kale, beets, raspberries (raspberries are HUGE in utah. They are harvested mostly up in Bear Lake where they have a festival to celebrate) and my usually green, kale.  I decided to try something new this week by adding mustard greens, parsley, and amaranth.
To be honest I think I’m going to stick with just kale and spinach in the future.  Maybe a little parsley here and there.  The mustard greens and amaranth added a little spice and completely overwhelmed all the fruit I added.  I couldn’t taste any of the peaches, and I put A LOT of peaches in.

I’m so happy that Salt Lake has such a successful farmer’s market with a large variety of local farmers to choose from.  I wish it would last all year long!  I enjoy contributing to the local economy and participating in something that is so pro community.

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I love green smoothies

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Green smoothies have become a constant staple in my daily diet.  This is by far the best lifestyle add-in I have made to date!  They are jam packed with vitamins and nutrients and work well with my on-the-go busy life style.  I usually spend about a hour or two every week preparing a week long supply of green smoothies that make up all my breakfasts, snacks, and most my lunches.  Although it is best to have a turbo blender, like the blend tec shown here, any blender will do (for now, at least, until you burn through it’s engine.)  I have been lucky enough to have friends who own turbo blenders so it has worked out for me to make little visits to their houses and borrow theirs.  I dream of owning my own someday but for the time being this is what works best for me.

When talking about nutrition with others the subject of green smoothies always comes up.  The number one question I always get asked is what recipes do I use.  I’m sure there could be a lot of money made in making a book of recipes (I even own one) but the truth is, you really don’t need a recipe.  It’s just a matter of finding out what tastes good to you, what is at a good price, and what makes you feel good.  So, I guess you could say that is my recipe.  One thing that I always, always, always use is a dark leafy green.  Spinach, Kale, Chard, or the greens that are on top of root veggies like carrots or beets are some examples.  The picture that is shown above is of items purchased at my last costco visit.  Costco actually has a really good (not excellent) variety of organic fruits and veggies for a great price.  That huge bag of organic baby kale was a steal at $4.  In the middle is a bag of frozen organic berries at a little bit steeper price of $9.  I always throw carrots into the mix or apples (not in this batch) to sweeten the blend up and balance out the bitterness of the greens.  The berries are added in because I know that they work well with my body’s chemistry.  On the left there is a bag of sprouted ground flax (not bought at costco but just on hand in my supplement cabinet at home.)  I love flax because it is rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids, which, studies have shown help worriers like me with anxiety.  I always add flax to my smoothies because it is an easy way to get that nutrient into my body.  A little side note about flax, your body absorbs the nutrients from a whole flax seed very poorly which is why it is best to have it ground, or even better, ground after it has sprouted.  I will make a more in depth post about this at a later date.

This batch of smoothies was made primarily of things bought at costco.  It made about 2 gallons.  I put half in easy to grab water bottles and froze the other half (they usually only last 3-4 days) for later on in the week.  Where I do my shopping for the week is what determines what I put into my smoothies.  I will do a post on smoothies made primarily of local grocery store produce as well at a later date.