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Strawberry Crisp

Happy Friday! Have you entered my Chia Warrior bar giveaway yet?

I’ve got another treat for you today: one of my new favorite healthy desserts. With Mother’s Day coming up, I thought it would be a fun time to share a seasonal dessert recipe. This is generally a very forgiving recipe, and you can use almost any kind of fruit. I made these in individual baking dishes, but you can make in one large dish if preferred.

So, backstory: While at lunch with a friend a few weeks ago, it came to light that I had never tasted strawberry pie. Weird, I know. Obviously, that had to be remedied. So that night, I decided to make an approximation just to get an idea. I officially understand what all the fuss is about.

So yeah, this strawberry crisp happened? Did you know there’s a difference between a crisp and a crumble? I’d always wondered about that—turns out that a crisp contains oats in the topping, whereas a crumble does not. The more you know…

This recipe happens to be fairly healthy. I like to top with plain Greek or Icelandic yogurt, but you can obviously do whipped cream (my mom’s 2-ingredient recipe is my all-time favorite) or vanilla ice cream instead.

strawberry crisp

Ingredients: Read More »

Paleo Snacks

Happy Friday! Today I’ve got some snacky stuff to share.

boiled eggs tomato fetaFeeling hangry on your Whole30 diet? Looking for some new snack ideas? Regardless of whether you’re doing the caveman diet-thing, my recent post on Azumio will satisfy your hunger with this list of healthy, delicious snacks that happen to be Paleo-friendly.

My personal favorite on this list might have to be the steamed sweet potato with nut butter. I eat this at least once a week—it may sound weird, but I promise it’s delicious!

I also love a hard-boiled egg as a snack. Half an avocado is another of my go-to “why don’t I eat this more often” healthy snack on the list.

What are your favorite snacks? 

Larabar Giveaway

A question I get frequently from clients is what sorts of protein and energy bars they should buy. There are so many on the market, it can be overwhelming. The main word I like to emphasize there is “Uncomplicated.” Look for short ingredients lists comprised of things you can actually pronounce and recognize.

I also like that word  because it gives me an excuse to link to an Elvis Costello song by the same name.

Larabars are one of my top picks. I love their minimally processed “food made from food” recipes consisting of just a few simple ingredients: mostly nuts and dried fruit with occasional extras like chocolate, sea salt, and vanilla extract thrown into a few of their products. Their products are non-GMO, vegan, Kosher, soy-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free. They source cocoa and coffee ingredients where possible as well. I also love that the company has teamed up with Feeding America to #ShareRealFood across the U.S.

They have lots of awesome flavors. As a peanut butter lover, of course the peanut butter cookie dough is my favorite. They recently started selling this adorable variety pack on Amazon featuring some of their most popular flavors. The packaging is super-cute. So many pretty colors!

Larabar variety box

One lucky reader will receive a box of their own. To win, just leave a comment below telling me your favorite snack. A randomly selected winner will be announced next Thursday.

 

This post has been part of another Running with Spoons Thinking Out Loud link party, where randomness is the name of the game. Thanks to Amanda for hosting.

 

Easy-as-Pie Blueberry Crisp

Okay, so maybe pie is not that easy (at least not if you’re making your own crust), but this recipe is about as simple as it gets. I made the NYC mistake recently of stopping by a fruit stand while hungry and bought a ton of blueberries. 2 pints for $3-how could I not? Having lived here almost ten years, I should totally know better, but I guess we all have our weak moments. That said, if overbuying out-of-season fruit is the worst of it, I’m probably doing okay.  Read More »

2-Ingredient Dessert Topping

I feel like calling anything 2-Ingredient This or 3-Ingredient That these days is major click-bait, but the simple truth is that this whipped cream is so stupid-easy, even the dessert-challenged (like yours truly) can make it. Calling this a recipe is kind of a joke—consider it more of a how-to.

whipped cream

I’m not sure if it was a health thing or a flavor thing, but growing up, my mom and grandmother always used maple syrup to sweeten whipped cream (that side of the family was sugar-phobic before it was cool). No family holiday was complete without it. It wasn’t until many, many years later that it occurred to me that sugar was the “normal” way to make whipped cream, but I could never switch now. “Normal” is overrated. Aside from being delicious, maple syrup boasts minerals like zinc and manganese plus some antioxidants. Read More »

What I Ate Wednesday #236

Suddenly it’s What I Ate Wednesday. Wow, this week is flying by! Let’s get right into the food-diary fest, shall we? Ugh, I said “fest.” Who am I? Talk t to me after I’m adequately caffeinated. I’ve been working on cutting back a little, and so far so good, but I still don’t think I’d ever go a morning without at least some. What I’m finding works is having that first mug really early, and then waiting until 10 or so to have the next, and then it’s either tea or decaf from there. So far so good.

Anyway, here’s a look at a recent day spent working at the hospital:

Breakfast: Savory oatmeal with avocado on topWIAW 236

Lunch: Salad with chicken and roasted veggies and miso tahini dressing; seltzer and an apple partway through the afternoon

Snack: Greek yogurt with a tablespoon each coconut flour, PB2, and pumpkin puree.I also added some cinnamon, as usual. Sorry the picture is so ugly. After this, I did some cleaning and then went and worked in a coffee shop for a bit. I drank a cup of decaf while I was there.

Greek yogurt with coconut flour and PB2

Dinner: Turkey burger on a sandwich thin with a side of veggies tossed with my new favorite pumpkin miso-tahini sauce (recipe coming soon). Another ugly picture. Sorry—I was in writing-cave mode.

turkey burger and veggies

Snack: A sliced apple (yes, another one) with a piece of Cabot cheddar and a teaspoon of Trader Joe’s fig butter. It’s so simple but feels really fancy. apple and cheddar
Do you have a coffee habit? Any snacks or meals you like that seem fancy but are actually super-simple to make?  

To see more WIAW from other bloggers, check out founder Jenn’s blog Peas & Crayons.

 

Thinking Out Loud: Milan and the World Expo

Wow, Thursday. I can’t believe it’s been a week since I got back from Italy. I feel like I’m still playing catch-up but wanted to share some of the highlights from my visit to the World Expo last week.

This was the main thing that brought me to Milan. This year’s theme was “Feeding the Planet: Energy for Life.” There were over 140 countries participating, and it was so cool to see the different interpretations.

The first stop for most visitors was Pavilion Zero, a more general presentation looking at the evolution of agriculture and human’s relationship to the planet and to food.

EXPO Entry

I wish I could have gotten to all the countries, but that would have taken days. Just walking around, you were exposed to so many different cultures and ideas. There were several clusters of countries doing a lot with coffee, chocolate, grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, etc. Cacao Expo

In Belgium, there were sculptures made of chocolate:Belgium Expo

Bugs as a viable protein source came up in several places. This was Holland:

Bugs in Holland

Speaking of bugs, the Netherlands food trucks drew the hipsters like a moth to a light: Holland food trucks

Another theme that came up a lot was making good use of space. There was a really neat vertical garden where I forgot to take pictures, but it was super-cool.

Some countries, like Spain, went all out and created an almost party-like atmosphere: Expo Spain

I’m going to be honest: I was damn embarrassed of the USA Pavilion. It came off as a bunch of talking heads in suits telling the camera how much they give a s*** about the world. At least Pepsi and Walgreens were well represented. USA expo

Italy made good use of its home-team advantage by showcasing restaurnts from each region of the country in an Eataly installation. I rolled with this gorgeous cold, cured pork with salad, rich balsamic vinegar, and organic bread. Eataly salad

I also loved the Italian Wine Tasting experience. 3 tastings per 10 euro ticket.

Stairway to Vino

Stairway to Vino

My goodness…I wish I had gotten, like, 10 tickets instead of one. Choosing my three wines was tough. I went with one primitivo rose, a delightful amarone, and a gorgeous, dry prosecco.  The wine tasting room was divided into wines from each region of Italy. You would scan your ticket and press the button under the bottle you wanted a taste from. So organized! So impossible to scam!

One of the coolest things at the Expo was the “Supermarket of the Future.” I spent a long, long time wandering around, taking in all the electronic displays and making notes about the layout. I love that you could look up the information about any particular product right then and there instead of having to whip out your phone to try to look up whether something might be a good fit for you. Supermarket of the Future display

I also appreciated, for example, that the bakery was near the end instead of right when you first walk in. Also, there was no “safe” perimeter vs the middle aisle wasteland. Additionally, the open floor plan made it easy to figure out where you needed to go and how to get there. Supermarket of the Future

Token supermarket selfie:

supermarket selfie

I was a sweaty, wavy-haired mess by the end of the day, but it was a great experience that gave me lots of interesting things to think about—and lots of recipe ideas!

What is the food culture like where you live? What would your ideal supermarket be like? What’s your favorite wine? 
This post has been part of another Running with Spoons Thinking Out Loud link party, where randomness is the name of the game. Thanks to Amanda for hosting.

WIAW Guest Post: A Day on an RD’s Plate

Happy What I Ate Wednesday! Today I have a guest post from Tanya Freirich, MS, RD, CDN, another NYC dietitian who I know from grad school and our internship. Since every week you get a glimpse at what I eat, I thought it would be a fun change of pace to show you what another dietitian puts on her plate! Take it away, Tanya.

***

Having a nutritious diet isn’t only something I plan for my clients, I also make it a priority for myself – the ultimate practice-what-you-preach. I love to trial new recipes in the kitchen so I’m usually eating my own creations rather than take-out. I learn more about food and cooking, control the ingredients, and save SO much money!

As you can see from below, I fit in as many vegetables and fruits as possible. The CDC and USDA advise between 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Below I’ve eaten about 8 servings for the day. When I counsel others on how to follow a healthier diet, I focus on replacing the “empty” foods like refined carbohydrates with hearty whole grains and fresh produce.TF produce

Not only will you feel so much better eating “real,” unprocessed foods, they are great sources of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber. The more fiber the better! Fiber can help your digestive tract keep things moving, improve your colon health, and increase your satiety after a meal!

TF Cucumber  

  • Breakfast — apple with peanut butter + coffee with soy milk
  • Snack – peach — I picked it myself!
  • Lunch — vegetarian chili packed with kidney and white beans with a side of roasted sweet potatoes
  • Snack — strips of bell pepper
  • Dinner — riced cauliflower, corn cut off the cob and pan-fried teriyaki salmon
  • Dessert —yellow watermelon

salmon and corn The yellow watermelon was quite the treat recently, but one of my favorite after-dinner snacks year-round is home-made popcorn popped in oil and topped with a bit of honey.

Many people ask in a worried tone, do I have to be vegan or vegetarian to be healthy and lose weight? No, not necessarily. I eat meat as a part of a healthy, balanced diet. High-quality meats play an important part, but consider them as a supporting role, not the lead. Moving more towards a plant-based diet is a recipe for health, but doesn’t mean you must completely omit animal products.

Happy eating!

Follow me on Twitter and Instagram for healthy recipes, nutrition tips and great nutrition articles.

To see more WIAW from other bloggers, check out founder Jenn’s blog Peas & Crayons.

 

Peach Berry Crumble with Crunchy Cereal Topping

Though every season offers beautiful fruits and veggies, summer fruit holds a special place in my heart, especially when it comes to dessert. Growing up, blueberry cobbler was one of my favorite summer treats.

peach berry crumbleNow, I’ve sworn up and down on this blog that I am not a baker, but fruit cobblers and crumbles are forgiving enough that even the pastry-challenged can pull off a winner. This lightened-up version serves one person perfectly, but you can easily multiply if you’re feeding a crowd. The topping gets it crunch from crushed cereal. I used Shredded Wheat here, but you can use whatever you like. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 small peach, sliced and cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup blueberries
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Shredded Wheat cereal, crushed

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Toss fruit with lemon juice and honey. Let sit 10 minutes and then arrange in a single-serving baking dish.
  3. In a small bowl, mix coconut flour, cinnamon, cereal, and coconut oil until it becomes a crunchy, crumble texture.
  4. Press crumble on top of fruit in dish.
  5. Bake 35-40 minutes or until fruit is soft and bubbling and topping is golden brown.
  6. Serve with plain Greek yogurt, whipped cream, or vanilla ice cream if desired.

What’s your favorite summer dessert? 

A Small Collection of Joyous Things

Happy Sunday. How’s your weekend been? Welcome to weekly list of small, good things.

*I really love the light this time of year. Early yesterday morning I took a walk in Central Park—I need to do that more often.

On my way back, I picked up some much-needed groceries, chatted with the fruit-stand guy for a bit, and then came home and made a yogurt mess for breakfast. This morning it was a green smoothie with cereal and a drizzle of coconut oil on top, as I’ve been having almost all week. I usually prefer hot breakfasts, but this time of year, having something cold in the morning is so refreshing. green smoothie with cereal

*A cousin sent me this “guided meditation”  the other day, and it was so funny, I just had to share. If you’re sensitive to language, though, might want to sit this one out.

*Yesterday afternoon, I took advantage of a last-minute ticket deal and went to see Danny Elfman’s Music from the Films of Tim Burton at Lincoln Center. So up my alley. I am not allowed to buy shoes this month, but I am allowed to spend my “fun money” on experiences like concerts and dinners out here and there. Totally worth the $49. At one point, Elfman himself actually came out and sang, like, all of The Nightmare Before Christmas with the orchestra. It was awesome.

*I have a new cocktail recipe coming your way watermelon mimosa

*I briefly mentioned on Wednesday that an old friend of mine passed away recently. It’s been a strange week, but one positive thing has been the music. Thinking about him got me thinking about all the different music we used to listen to riding around in the car or hanging out with friends on summer nights. A few bands I’ve been coming back to a lot this week that I had almost forgotten about are The Olivia Tremor Control, Sufjan Stevens, and Neutral Milk Hotel.

The first song I thought of when I heard he’d died was this one—it was like instant time travel ten years back to the very first time I heard it. I fully admit to crying like a dope in my kitchen as I unstacked the dishwasher. I actually had to sit down and just listen. Music can be very healing, even when we don’t totally understand how.

Sorry about all the feels posts this week. Thanks for reading anyway : )

What are some things that have brought you joy this week? 

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