Golden Milk

“Herbs and spices promote well-being in your entire body, not just in one particular area.” – Dr. Mercola While in Sagaponeck, NY last weekend celebrating Grandma’s 85th birthday, my cousins and I stumbled upon a hidden gem down a small … Continue reading

Crumbled Tempeh Curry Stir-fry

The other night Topher and I both got home late and were more or less starving, we took a quick inventory of what we had around and came up with this concoction — fast, easy, delicious, makes for great leftovers — perfect, right?! I love keeping tempeh and tofu on hand to create fast meals with. I estimated our ingredient amount here (sorry, I didn’t know it’d turn out so good so I didn’t capture it as we made it! ), so please feel free to adjust according to your liking. Really, almost any veggies that you have around would make a great addition to this dish. It’s great as is, or over a grain (we had it with quinoa; basmati or jasmine rice would work well too).
tempehcurrystirfry

Ingredients:
Serves 4

red curry paste, about 2 tablespoons
1 can of coconut milk, about 1 cup
organic unrefined coconut oil, 1 and 1/2 tablespoons
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 of a yellow onion, chopped
1 package of organic tempeh (I like to use the Lifelight flax variety ) , crumbled
1 package of green beans, cut into halves
2 carrots, sliced
1 zucchini, chopped
red pepper flakes
sea salt
fresh cilantro (optional )

The tempeh crumbles very easily; break it apart into bite size pieces and set aside.
Heat the coconut oil on medium high heat. Once it’s melted add in the garlic and onions and cook until the onions become translucent.
Add in the tempeh crumbles and mix well. Add in the zucchini, carrots and green beans.
While the vegetables are cooking,  in a separate bowl mix the coconut milk and curry paste until the paste has dissolved. Take the coconut milk and curry mixture and add it to the pan. Stir thoroughly so that it’s all mixed together well. Add a bit of red pepper and sea salt to taste. It’s nice to leave the vegetables a little crunchy so be careful not to over cook them. Heat through and serve! I like to add a bit of fresh cilantro as a garnish.

with love and healthy-quick-meals,

Jackie

Kelp, the new salt.

Sooo… kelp? Huh?  I get that a lot.

Kelp is a vegetable of the sea (aka a seaweed) that grows in the oceans living off sunlight and absorbing many of the minerals and nutrients that exist in the water around it.  Due to this natural process of absorption, these essential minerals and nutrients are easily assimilated into the body in this natural form (no scientists needed).

There are many reasons to include kelp in your regular eating cycles, but one of the most important reasons is because of its high levels of iodine.  Iodine is an essential mineral and is necessary for proper thyroid function, however most salts are stripped of this natural mineral in the manufacturing process or contain synthetic versions of it, leaving many of us at risk of deficiency.

The thyroid is responsible for many functions in the body, 2 of which are regulating our metabolism and keeping our body temperature in check.  Using kelp in your food is a great way to ensure that you are getting a healthy dose of iodine (as well as calcium, iron, potassium, and some B vitamins) and reducing the risk of improper thyroid function and iodine deficiency. kelp

Luckily, you don’t really have to learn how to incorporate seaweed into your favorite pasta dishes and veggies (although I do encourage it).  Kelp is available in a granulated form and can be sprinkled on top of food just as you would with salt.  Because it is from the sea, it shares a similar seasoning flavor to salt, and you can use kelp flakes instead of salt or right along with it.

So easy, right?  I had a feeling you were gonna like this post…

Find these easy to use kelp granules in a shaker at your local health food store or online.

 

with love and seaweed,

Amanda

The Power of Accountability

The morning is such a beautiful time; we open our eyes to a new day, show gratitude for all that surrounds us, and move forward with love and good intentions (I mean, that’s the ideal plan, right?).  We all know that life can sometimes get in the way of our well being, so it is extremely important to make time for the things that deeply nourish you, making all of the other “stuff” (stress, work, bills, time) more manageable.

For me, I knew that I needed a better spiritual practice in the morning.  I have had the hot lemon water and green smoothie thing down for well over a year, but there was something missing.  I wanted (needed) to take some time in the morning to do things that made me feel fulfilled, happy.

I am a firm believer in “how you live your mornings is how you live your day”, so for the past 7 weeks, I have developed and practiced a morning routine.  I gave myself some options, and I made a promise that I would do my best to practice at least 2 of these things at the start of every day.

You may remember the post I shared when I was just starting this adventure… So here is how my calendar looks now:

calendar completed

I have to say, I am really proud of myself.

Yes, there are a few blank days, and yes, some mornings I only did one of the practices, but why focus on that?  That is why it’s called a practice, right?  Because we are practicing it, working on integrating it into our life.  It’s not always going to look perfect, and it definitely isn’t always going to feel perfect, but we make the time anyway because we know that it is benefitting us on a deeper level.

Over these past 47 days, I have again learned the power of accountability.  Some mornings, it was a real struggle for me to sit and meditate for 10 minutes when all I wanted to do was get on the computer, turn on some music and check my email… But then I would think of today, the day that I would be sharing a picture of my calendar with you, and that was my motivation.  And of course after my 10 minutes of meditation (or whichever practice I decided on that morning) I felt wonderful, and was so grateful that I took the time for myself.

So thank you for keeping me accountable.

Accountability is one of the strongest ingredients in successful health coaching, and I share it with you because I want to motivate you to commit to something you have been thinking about, something that makes your insides sparkle.  Hang a homemade calendar on your wall to keep track of your progress, find a friend that has something he/she wants to commit to as well and do it together, write about it on your blog, share it with someone you love and ask them to check in with you every day about it… Find something that works for you and do it!  And don’t be scared of error, embrace it, learn from it.IMG_4008

Moving forward, I am feeling more confident and stable in my morning routine.  I now know that in order to feel grounded and balanced in my day, I need to take some time in the morning to journal, practice yoga, meditate, read, stretch, or post a inspirational quote.  I may even make another calendar to help.

I would love to hear the ways you have, or are planning to, keep yourself accountable, and what it is that you want to add more of to your life.

with love and gratitude,

Amanda

Spiced Scrambled Tofu

I’ve had scrambled tofu before but never tried to make it myself. After coming home from work the other night, I wanted to throw something together quickly, so decided to experiment with a little scrambled tofu. I was inspired by the chili seasoning that Amanda incorporated into her simple black beans recipe the other day, and had picked some up at the store so I had it on hand. Although scrambled tofu is mostly served for breakfast in place of eggs, I though it’d be nice to spice it up a bit to make it a little more savory and appealing for dinner.

Tofu is a great source of protein and iron. What I love about it is that due to it’s neutral flavor it’s very versatile and can be seasoned in so many different ways.scrambledtofu Since it’s so easy and fast  to cook up it’s a great staple to have in your fridge.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

7-8oz of extra firm organic tofu, crumbled*
1/2 yellow onion (or 1 small), chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of olive oil
2 cups chopped kale
1 1/2 tablespoons of vegetarian chili spice mix
1/4 cup chopped parsley
sea salt, to taste

To crumble the tofu, first drain it and then use a couple of paper towels to squeeze out any excess liquid. Then crumble the tofu into bit sized pieces. Set aside.

Heat olive oil on medium heat in a skillet. Add in onions and garlic and saute for a few minutes until the onions soften and become translucent. Add in chili mix and stir into the onions and garlic. Add the crumbled tofu and stir. Cover for about 4 to 5 minutes until it’s heated throughout. Add in the kale and salt and stir for about a minute until the kale starts to wilt. Taste it, if you feel you’d like some more flavor add in a bit more seasoning and a bit of salt, continue to do this until the flavor has popped to your liking!

I had this with some arugula salad and a delicious piece of spelt bread. As I mentioned, tofu really takes on the flavor of whatever you mix it with so feel free to experiment with flavors (seasoning, herbs, sauces, etc)  you like!

with love and tofu,

jackie

*It’s important that you make sure to buy organic tofu, this ensures that your tofu will not be made from genetically modified soybeans.

Parsnip Carrot Coconut Soup

I had some parsnips in the fridge that I purchased at the farmers market a couple of weeks back and knew I had to use them soon before they went bad …. since it’s about 20 degrees in New York, I figured what better way to use them then to make soup?! I decided to do a little experiment and combine some other ingredients I had on hand to make a tasty little pureed soup. Root vegetables are in season this time of year; parsnips, carrots, turnips, beets, etc…. they are all super healthy and great for roasting and soup making.

Serves 2parsnipsouping
Ingredients:
2 parsnips, peeled and sliced
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 teaspoon of coconut oil
3/4 cup of vegetable broth
1 can of light coconut milk (regular coconut milk is great too)
sea salt and white pepper to taste

In a soup pot, melt the coconut oil over medium-high heat and then add in the chopped onions. Add a bit of salt and pepper and stir.  Saute the onions for a few minutes, stirring frequently until they begin to soften and become translucent. Then add the carrots and parsnips, stir thoroughly so that they are coated with coconut oil. Stir frequently until the parsnips and carrots start to soften a bit,  about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the vegetable broth and coconut broth and bring to a boil. Add in a bit more salt and pepper. Then cover and simmer on low for about 35 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are very soft. Transfer to a blender and blend until pureed.
I garnished it with a bit of parsley, because I had it and it looked pretty 🙂 … chives or spring onions would be great too.

This soup is definitely of the sweeter variety, so if you love soups like butternut squash I think you’ll love this!
ParsnipSoup

with love and soup making,

jackie

Hemp Dijon Salad Dressing

hempdressingingredientsThe salad dressing aisle at supermarkets is a crazy place , there are an insane amount of options and truth be told none of them are as good a choice as making your own at home. Many of them use cheap, unhealthy ingredients (such as cheap oils) and add unnecessary sugars and sweeteners. Making your own can be really simple and take your salad to a whole new level of health (who doesn’t want that?!). I chose to use hemp oil as my base here because of its many benefits (plus it’s a pretty cool green color 🙂 ). You can certainly switch it out with quality olive oil if that’s what’s available to you.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup of hemp oil
1/4 cup of raw apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until thoroughly mixed. Use over salads or mix some in with cooked grains such as quinoa for added flavor.

hempsaladdressing

with love and healthy salad dressing,

Jackie

Magical Maca drink

We love having superfoods in our smoothies but what about when it’s cold and you just want to cozy up to a nice, warm drink? I have just the thing for you! After I made some cashew milk, I was inspired to make some sort of warm Maca drink since I had it on hand,  so I poked around the internet a bit and came up with this Magical Maca hot drink. Although Maca has a pretty unique flavor it has been described as slightly nutty and butterscotch-ish, which I think is accurate. You can purchase Maca Powder at most health food stores and online.

Maca is known as the Superfood of the Andes, as it’s native to the Andean Mountains in Peru and Bolivia. An interesting fact is that it’s one of the only food plants in the world that can thrive at such a high altitude. It’s said to help boost stamina and maintain energy. It’s loaded with health supporting vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and plant sterols. It’s also a good source of plant protein and is rich in fiber.

MagicalMaca

Ingredients:
1 cup of cashew milk (or store bought almond milk, unsweetened)
1 teaspoon Maca Powder
1 teaspoon Maple Syrup

Place ingredients in a blender and blend briefly to mix everything together. Transfer the liquid to a saucepan and heat it on low. It’s ready to drink once it’s warm and starts to bubble. I thought about this after I already drank it but it would be delicious with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top!

with love and magical maca,

Jackie