Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thanksgiving Appetizers That Won't Spoil Your Dinner!

Keeping guests occupied and out of the way is always a task that we pass off with wine and snacks as in spinach dip with bread,chips or cheese but by the time Thanksgiving dinner is ready there are always a few that are pretty stuffed by then,most of the time it's the kids! Here are a few light and simple recipes to keep your guests occupied with eating but not full!

Crispy Curry Roasted Chick Peas:
-2 Cans drained,rinsed and pat dry
-2 tablespoons of olive oil
-2 teaspoons of curry powder
-1 teaspoon of kosher salt

Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit,toss chick peas in oil,curry powder and salt until coated evenly,then spread onto a baking sheet. Bake until crisp and golden,for about 30-40mins

These pair perfectly with a cocktail and or with sweet pickles!

Warm Spiced Olives:
-4 dried bay leaves
-1 cup of olive oil
-1 tablespoon of Aleppo pepper
-6 strips of lemon zest from one lemon or 3 strips at 1/2 inch in width
-1 1/2 pounds of unpitted olives
-1 1/2 teaspoons of fennel seeds

Toast seeds in a large skillet, over medium heat until fragrant,in about 3 mins add lemon zest,olives,bay leaves,pepper and oil into the skillet. Cook for another 3 mins or until warmed,transfer into a bowl and serve warm.

Creamy Cauliflower Dip:
-1 medium head of cauliflower (florets and stem cut into 1 inch pieces)
-1 garlic clove peeled
-1/4 cup of olive oil (divided in half,the rest will be used for serving)
-1 teaspoon of ground cumin
-1 medium onion thinly sliced
-2 teaspoons of kosher salt
-3/4 cup of plain greek yogurt
-1 teaspoon of finely grated lemon zest
-3 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
-chopped parsley for serving
-baby romaine slices for serving

Pour water into a saucepan about 1/4 depth,over high heat add garlic and cauliflower,cover and bring to a boil (10mins)until cauliflower is easily pierced.Drain and set aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet,add onion,cumin and teaspoon of salt. Cook over high heat until onions are golden,stir often.
Add golden onion mixture to a blender,add yogurt,lemon zest,lemon juice and the cauliflower we set aside from earlier. Blend until mixture becomes a puree. While blender is running add 2 tablespoons of olive oil evenly,if the mixture is too thick add 1 tablespoon of water at a time to get the desired consistency. Cool to room temperature,when serving,transfer to bowl and drizzle olive oil over the dip and garnish top with chopped parsley.
Serve with carrots,celery,baby romaine or endive lettuce for dipping.

Try using Cucumbers slices instead of bread or crackers,it will really cut down on the carb intake and they're less expensive than boxed crackers! Same goes for cheese,as delicious as it is,the cost adds up when providing for a large group of people and its very filling!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Canned Food Drive!

This Friday Nov.13th 2015 and next Friday Nov.20th 2015 at Victoria's Farmers Market will have a drop off box at the Farmers Market info booth,for those that would like to donate non-perishable canned food items for Claremont Graduate University-Drucker Net Impact Food Drive!

                                                          ****Please No Glass***

Here is a list most needed items:

-canned meats/tuna
-peanut butter
-canned fruits and vegetables
-soups and stews

                                  Give What You Can,Every Donation Makes A Difference!
               We can make a difference in our community this holiday season,one CAN at a time!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

How to Stay Physically Active During the Winter!

If you love being outdoors to work up a sweat but notice that your activity level decline after day-light savings or you're looking to begin a workout routine before the New Year but just can't imagine running in the cold! Look no further,here a few tips you can begin or continue your daily workout routine during the cold winter days!

-First off,we need to remember that,in any temperature we're not used to,we need to give our body some time to get acclimated to it. So if its been awhile since you've met a cold winter day just try your best to push through it because in time you will become accustomed to the weather change!

-Try doing mild aerobics before leaving the house for a walk or a run! Light aerobics that get your blood flowing and your heart rate up such as jogging in place or jumping jacks before stepping out the door will warm you up nicely and not so shocking to your body.

-Dress accordingly,layer it up as much as you can but still allowing your body to have comfort while exercising. Layers make a great way to stay warm and can easily be peeled off as your workout adrenaline kicks in!

-Gym buddies,this maybe a nice to think about a no contract gym to attend to for those days that can seem unbearable to exercise outdoors. Try calling up all your friends for a gym buddy,things can get hectic during the holidays,so enlisting a buddy system can be a helpful way to keep you on track and focused on your health goals!

-If you're not a fan of the gym,maybe consider investing in a few gym like pieces of equipment for in home use! Resistance bands,weights and yoga matts are low in cost and are extremely convenient/effective! Set aside your "gym time" in your home everyday at a certain time to program your brain to think of exercising at that specific time! Then store away all of your workout equipment in a closet!

There are so many ways to stay active this winter and with help of friends or even the internet,you can constantly switch up your routine before you get bored of it!  Remember some winters last anywhere from 3-5 MONTHS! depending on where you live in the world,that can be quite sometime without exercise in your life,the key is to stay active and excited about different ways to incorporate health and exercise into our daily lives!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Few Good Reasons To Go Organic!

We hear or see the word Organic and immediately associate it with a higher price tag and then of course you'll hear from time to time,how important it is to eat organic food because its healthier but do we really know the reasons why eating organic and locally grown food is beneficial? Well here they are! These are just a few of the important reasons why we should all be eating organic and locally grown food!

-Organic Produce/Meat and Dairy have all been proven to use less energy,about 30 percent less! It is also beneficial to the lands soil,water,air and habitat as well as safer to those farmers that harvest our food!

-Organic Food some creature out of a sci-fi movie! Anytime poor science is involved,as in GMOs (genetically modified organisms) or chemicals,cloned food etc we should take notice! Only eleven years ago genetically modified food was not apart of our food supply! We and our kids and their kids are not and should not be a science experiment!

-Organic farming would eliminate farming pollution! Industrial agriculture doesn't just pollute farmers and the farmland but the surrounding land with odorless and invisible poisons! Synthetic fertilizers drift downstream and eventually end up in the ocean,creating dead zones in our oceans!

-Organic Food,It Just Tastes Better! Its been proven that organic fruit is sweeter and higher in antioxidants! When grown in the environment that is in harmony and not in chaos by forgein chemicals and synthetic soils,all produce will be at maximum taste and nutrients!

-Organic Food,protects us and future generations! Remember when certain industrial and agriculture chemicals are deemed "safe" they are at levels for adults not children! Many studies show that pesticides effect the nervous system and increase the risk of cancer.

Now,organic farming is not the most efficient,its slower,more labor intense and complex but its so worth the idea of a sustainable way of living for us and future loved ones! One small thing like eating organic will have the biggest impact on our lives! With a higher demand by us,the consumers,the more the cost of buying organic food will decrease add that to saving the enviroment and our loved ones future,i'd say purchasing organic food is a lot like being a super hero!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Coconut Persimmon Smoothie!

Persimmon Season is HERE! Eating seasonal and locally grown produce is a nice way to mix up your dishes all year round! It also is a great way to introduce a calendar to young children by showing them what month their favorite fruit or vegetable can be picked! This month Persimmons can be found at your local Farmers Market,they look like mini pumpkins,making them a delicious and festive snack for Fall!

Here is just another way to enjoy your persimmons this season!


2 ripe persimmons,chopped
1 cup of almond milk
1 banana chopped
1/2 cup of ice
1/3 cup of shredded coconut
1/4 cup of honey
1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/8 cup of ground nutmeg

Blend all ingredients until smooth and pour over ice and enjoy or chill in refrigerator! You can also pour smoothie into popsicle trays!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Roasted Pumpkin Seed Recipes!

Tis the season of pumpkin patches and pumpkin carving with the family,check out this Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe before throwing out those pumpkin seeds! They're an easy snack rich in fiber that kids love!


1 1/2 Cup Of Pumpkin Seeds
2 Teaspoons of melted butter or olive oil
Garlic Powder
Cayenne Pepper


Preheat over to 300 degrees F.
Clean off major strings and chunks from seeds
Toss pumpkin seeds in a bowl of melted butter or olive oil,with your choice of seasoning
Spread pumpkin seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet
Bake for 45 minutes and toss occasionally until golden brown

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

In Season,Tomatillos Recipe!

A filling charred corn salad with a creamy tomatillo dressing is the perfect sending off the summer meal! Since it is still warm out,this recipe is quick and simple which means less time in a hot kitchen!

Tomatillo Guacamole:
3/4 cup of chopped cilantro
6 to 8 husked and coarsely chopped tomatillos
2 cloves of garlic,peeled and smashed
1 avocado,peeled,pitted and diced
1/2 chopped jalapeno chopped with seeds (or no seeds for a more mild taste)
1/2 onion chopped
Juice of 1 Lime
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
Combine all into a food processor or blender until creamy!

Charred Corn Salad:
6 fresh shucked,corns
2 tablespoons of canola oil to coat the corn
kosher salt and cracked pepper
juice from 3 limes
1 ripe avocado diced
1 fresno chile pepper,seeded and finely chopped
1/2 small red onion finely diced

Preheat a grill pan on high heat,brush the canola oil over the corn and sprinkle salt and pepper on the corn. Then char for about 3 minutes on each side of the corn. Slice off kernels with a knife and into a bowl. Combine kernels and lime juice,avocado,fresno chile and red onions into the bowl as well.

Combine the corn salad and tomatillo dressing together and squeeze lime juice over the now combined dish. Can garnish salad with cilantro and cojito crumbles! Serve and enjoy!!