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Saturday, May 31, 2014

John Bubbly (or The Thai Champagne)

I know, I know, make up one name for your new drink and stick with it. When I first concocted this drink I definitely molded it after the classic John Daly drink (iced tea, lemonade and vodka) which is a play on an Arnold Palmer (iced tea and lemonade.)

Skipping the lemonade, I mixed iced tea with Champagne- it was that easy. The bubbles give just a little sparkle to a basic tea. To get into the details, I made the drink to go with a this snappy coconut milk cod, which is Thai-like, not to mention somewhat difficult to pair a cocktail with (this one worked great with that dish!) That lead me to iced tea, which lead me to the John Daly which got us to this point.

Because the flavors already rolling around the kitchen involved ginger and lemon grass, I tweaked my tea in that direction by brewing basic tea with a slice of ginger and stem of the lemongrass.

Now, your version doesn't have to be Thai-esque.
You could use a straight black tea or even a fruity tea; skip the lemongrass and add in a cinnamon stick. It all goes and it all depends on your palate.  I don't like anything too sweet, so the plain unsweetened tea actually helped to calm down the sweetness of the champagne for me, but you could add a touch of honey to your tea while it's steeping.

It's a refined John Daley.  It's a simple afternoon sunny sipper. It's a base idea for you to have fun with.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Spicy Lime Coconut Grilled Cod

Memorial Day weekend has become our National Biggest Grilling Weekend,
unofficially. For many, this marks the true start of summer. Most kids are done with school for the summer, families start to head to beachy areas for a little rest and relaxation and grills get lit for the first time since the first snowfall at the start of winter.

Ok, truth be told I've fired up my grill a handful of times already this year, but I'm pretty sure this is the first time I was able to grill without a hat, scarf and mittens on!

The request was for something tasty, Dave had been traveling to locales with very limited options and he just wanted something with flavor. My mind immediately honed in on a fresh dish with spicy notes. Fresh grilled fish and asparagus in a pool of spicy, garlic and gingery coconut milk with a huge squeeze of lime to keep it all bright! The ensuing recipe delivered in taste and meets my health nod.

Kick off your Summer with something a little more interesting than a burger - like the songs says: Put the lime in the coconut and throw the shell away!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Quick and Easy Quinoa Breakfast Porridge

Every Sunday I make a huge batch of grains to use for the week. Usually it's quinoa, sometimes it's brown rice or lentils and often it's a mixture of all three. Whatever it is, it's stored in the fridge and becomes a base for lunches and dinners...and yes, even breakfast!

Think of the quinoa as oatmeal- it's kind of a vessel for the cinnamon, nuts and maple syrup.  And just like oatmeal it's completely versatile- add what you like. Raw honey instead of maple syrup, bananas and almonds in place of the walnuts and goji berries. Just have fun with it!

This is a great breakfast to toss together in a glass jar on your way out of the house and then enjoy when you get to work! Easy healthy fat and happy breakfast, it's the most important meal of the day!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Quick Honey Spiced Pickles

I love vinegar, from balsamic to apple cider to champagne. It's a taste I developed as a child and has stuck with me ever since. So it's no surprise I love anything pickled. Too bad I didn't develop patience too.

This quick pickle recipe is perfect if you are like me. It's quick, about as simple as it can get and (most important) crunchy and tasty! 

Using raw honey is so much healthier than a refined sugar. Refined sugar is a "negative" nutrient, this means it literally does not have any nutritional value and eating it actually makes your body use up stored nutrients to process it. Honey on the other hand has many beneficial nutrients, enzymes, and antioxidants; raw honey is best as typical honey processing (the kind of honey you'll find at your grocery store, often shaped like a bear) destroys many of the enzymes and antioxidants that give the benefits of raw honey. Save a bear, use the raw honey.

Next time you have an extra cucumber or two, slice them into these delicious honey pickles for a super Fat and Happy addition to any meal.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Healthy Fried Brown Rice

It's May 2nd and I'm thinking about turning the heater on. Our brutal Chicago winter is extending into Spring and causing a lot of angst in the process.

This is the time of year where we are naturally supposed to take off a few layers, get moving outdoors again, bask in the crisp sun, get excited about buds on the trees and shed a bit of that weight old man Winter packs on us. Spring's bounty, produce like sprouts and asparagus, is meant for that purpose - to help us cleanse our systems

However, I don't really want a cold salad when the temps are hovering in the 40s. So today's recipe incorporates sprouts with a hot brown rice for healthy fried version. It's warm, comforting with a hint of  Spring freshness.

Warmer weather is just around the corner; until them, try my Healthy Fried Brown Rice to. Oh, is that a little blade of grass I see popping up?


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