Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Thanksgiving Recipes

The best holiday of the year (for our bellies) is finally around the corner!  Here are a few favorite Thanksgiving recipes, tips and tricks shared by our LDW members:

Turkey Tips
-For a juicy turkey:  Wrap it in banana leaves and cook it in the oven at a really low temperature (250) for almost all day long.. (season it as you wish)
-Brine turkey overnight and then roast and turn the bird over a high heat (400 degrees for almost 2 hours).

-Great place to get your bird: gobblegobble.com
Amazeballs Appetizers
-Black Rice with Roasted Acorn Squash

1 1/2 cups black rice (wild or forbidden)
2 Tb. butter (oil for Vegan)
2 shallots, peeled and diced
1 cup pecan pieces
Zest of 1 orange
2 Tb. fresh thyme leaves
2 Tb. vegetable oil
1 acorn squash, peeled seeded and diced
Salt and Pepper

Set a medium sauce pot over medium heat. Add the butter and shallot and saute for 2 minutes. Then add the rice and toss to coat in butter. Add the appropriate amount of water as directed on the rice package (from 3-4 cups depending on the variety of rice.) Add 1 1/2 tsp salt, cover, and bring to a boil.

Once boiling, stir, lower the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until cooked through--follow time directed on rice package.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Toss the peeled and diced acorn squash in oil and spread over a baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Turn and spread the acorn squash again and roast another 10 minutes. In the last 2-3 minutes sprinkle the pecans over the acorn squash so the pieces can toast.

Once the rice and roasted acorn squash are ready, toss together with orange zest and thyme. Then salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm of room temperature!
-Spicy corn:


1. 1 packet of sweet corn
2. 1/2 medium onion (Cut into very thin slices.
3. 1/2 tomato ( cut into very tiny pieces)
4. 1/2 green slim pepper or a slice of bell pepper (Cut into nano pieces)
5. 3/4 teaspoon salt
6. 1/8 teaspoon of red pepper powder
7. 1/4" thick slice of butter from a quarter for buttery flavor
8. 2-3 teaspoon of oil

Add oil in deep bowl or pan, add onion and saute for 2-3 minutes. Add tomato and saute 2 minutes. Add salt and red pepper and mix for 1 minutes. Add 1/2 packet and stir for 2 minutes. Add remaining 1/2corn and stir for 2 minutes. Add 4 small cup of water and stir well and mix.Add green pepper and boil at medium temp for 5 minutes. Cover and Cook at medium for 1 hrs hours. Stiring and looking for water is still there and corn do not stick to the pot. Simmer at low another 1/2 hrs till all water is evaporated. You may open cover for better evaporation. Check and stir as often so corn do not stick to pan. Add butter and stir well and simmer at lowest level for another few minutes.
-Autumn Chopped Salad

*6 to 8 cups chopped romaine lettuce
*2 medium pears, chopped
*1 cup dried cranberries
*1 cup chopped pecans
*8 slices thick-cut bacon, crisp-cooked and crumbled
*4 to 6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
*Poppy seed Salad Dressing (I like T. Marzetti)
*Balsamic Vinaigrette (I like Newman’s Own Light Balsamic Vinaigrette)

*On a large platter, combine the lettuce, pears, cranberries, pecans, bacon and feta cheese. Drizzle generously with poppy seed dressing, followed by some of the balsamic vinaigrette. (I would estimate that I used about a cup of dressing: 70 percent poppy seed dressing and 30 percent balsamic vinaigrette) If you prefer your salad to have more dressing, feel free to experiment with the combination.

-Roast heads of garlic into mashed potatoes.  Can't wait to try this out, oh my.
-Sweet potato balls: Sweet potatoes, packed around a marshmallow, rolled in coconut flakes and sprinkled with brown sugar
Time Saving Tip
To save time, I gather all my recipes, do any prep I can the day before (chopping, laying out ingredients), and make a written plan for the day. The written plan helps me keep the stress under control.
May the Turkey day odds be ever in your favor!


Thursday, October 31, 2013

Soup Roundup!

With Fall in full swing and winter coming (:D) , we asked the LDW ladies for their favorite soup recipes:

Southwestern Soup

Tortilla Soup

2Tbs veg oil
1 med onion chopped
2 cloves garlic sliced
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
1 Tbs chili powder
1 tsp kosher salt
6 C chicken broth
1 C frozen corn kernels
1 ripe tomato chopped
1 C shredded cooked chicken
1/2 C cilantro
juice of 2 limes squeezed
Tortilla chips

Additional lim e wedges for garnish.  Heat the oil in med saucepan over med heat. Sauté onion for a few minutes, then add garlic, chipotle, chili powder, salt. Cook until onion softens, add chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer uncovered for about 10 mins. Turn off heat and stir in tomato, chicken, cilantro, lime juice. Put some chips in a bowl and ladle your soup on top.

Taco Soup

1 can of corn
1 can of hormel chili with beans
1 Can of diced tomato
Taco seasoning
Chicken broth to taste. Garnish with tortilla chips, sour cream and avocados. Love the reference BTW. Me and DrH are reading it together.

Chicken/Cheese Tortilla Soup
Mexican Chicken Soup

Veggie Soup
South-Asian Lentils / Daal

2-3 cups of lentils
1 tsp turmeric
1 onion, chopped
2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
4 cloves garlic, chopped or equivalent of garlic paste
1 tomato
1 small chili sliced down the middle length-wise, but still in tact (will add flavor without adding spice, or omit completely)
Lime juice to taste
Olive oil

Wash lentils and soak in water. Heat oil, add mustard and cumin seeds and cover. When popping noise slows down (think popcorn), remove from heat. Add lentils to huge pot with water (add enough water to cover), + garlic, turmeric, tomato and simmer. Add the mustard/cumin seeds/oil (watch out for splashing). In the same pan, heat a little more oil and fry the onions until brown. Add those to the lentil pot. Simmer until lentils are soft (add water as needed if it starts to dry out, adjust salt accordingly). Add lime juice and top with cilantro.

Butternut Squash Soup

6 Tbsp onion, chopped
4 Tbsp butter
4-5 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed
3 cups chicken broth
¼ tsp ground black pepper
1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 tsp dried marjoram
1 (8 oz) cream cheese, at room temp

In saucepan, sauté onions in butter until tender. Add squash, broth, marjoram, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Bring to boil; cook 20 min or until squash is tender.
Puree squash mixture and cream cheese in blender. Return to saucepan and heat through. Do not allow to boil.

And if you’ve never cut raw squash (and I hadn’t), you cut off two ends with a big knife. Use a veggie peeler to remove outer layer. Slice in half and dig out seeds with spoon. Then cut remainder into cubes. You’ll probably need 2 squash to get 4-5 cups cubed.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Vegetable Bean Soup
Golden Potato Leek Soup with Cheddar Toast
French Onion Soup
Hearty Protein Soups

Shrimp Chowder

8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
1 cup chopped green onions
2 cans Cream of Potato soup
1 can whole kernel corn
1 can cream-style corn
1.5 to 2 cups of milk
1 lb. shrimp thawed
1 tsp. Tony Chachere Creole seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter, add green onions and sautee until soft. Add cream cheese and melt. Add soup and both corns. Simmer 10-15 minutes. Add milk to desired consistency. Add shrimp and heat through.

(I use 3 cans of stock for two people. Otherwise, I really don't measure things, so use your judgment. A wider pan makes it easier to keep the eggs separate.)

Bring chicken stock to a boil, then down to simmer. While waiting, cook a small handful of angel hair pasta for each person.

CAREFULLY drop in one egg for each person, toss in some baby spinach leaves and let it simmer a few minutes. You want the egg to cook through. ONLY move the egg around enough to make sure it doesn't scorch at the bottom. Try not to break up the whites any more than you have to.

Ladle into bowls, including one egg and some spinach in each. Stir in a handful of angel hair pasta.

Sprinkle generously with grated parmesan and fresh ground pepper.ns. Simmer 10-15 minutes. Add milk to desired consistency. Add shrimp and heat through.

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Moroccan Chicken Butternut Squash Soup

Lamb Stew with Plums


Monday, September 23, 2013

Halloween Recipes

Ghoulishly gourmet ideas for Halloween!  The cool thing about these recipes is they can be adapted for gory, Doctor-themed parties as well.

Savory Nibbles

Spider-web 7-layer Dip

1 bag blue corn tortilla chips
Black Beans
Sour Cream
Layer all ingredients and "ice" the sour cream into a web design on top.  Add in a plastic spider for good measure.

Intestinal Pizza Bread
Make a long roll of dough (any puffy pizza dough will work, you can even stuff it with cheese or pepperoni). Line a pan with pizza sauce, place the roll of dough in the pan back and forth, the way intestines would look. Drizzle pizza sauce along the creases. Can also make as a dessert with puff pastry and plum jelly.

Sweet and Spooky

Witch/Zombie Fingers

Sugar cookie dough
Green food coloring
Whole almonds

Add a few drops of food coloring to cookie dough.  Roll dough into the size of a finger.  Use a knife to make small joint indentations.  Add an almond to the finger-tip and bake.  For more interesting special effects, add some red food gel around the nails.  Adapted from this recipe.

Pumpkin Rice Krispy Treats
Mold rice krispy treats in the shape of a pumpkin with a tootsie roll for a stem and some green frosting vines.

Spooky Bananas and Pumpkins, via Pinterest

Zombie Eyeball Meatballs

Deathly Drinks

Glow-in-the-Dark Punch
Tonic Water + your favorite punch recipe
Tonic water with quinine glows under a black light.  You can freeze the tonic water into ice cube trays and add it into your favorite punch, or incorporate the tonic water into the recipe itself.  We used Homer Simpson ice cube trays and added them to a red punch for glow-in-the-dark shrunken head drinks.

Rigor Mortis, Dracula's Kiss, Witch's Brew, Candy Corn, Pumpkin Martini, Angel of Death, via Pinterest

Brain Hemmorage, via Pinterest

And if you still need some more creepy Halloween recipe ideas, check out this site for more ideas!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

On The Go Meals

Let's talk about on-the-go meals. Not just meals that are easy to make, but ones that are super-fast AND portable. There was a conversation in the LDW group recently about breakfast ideas for the DrHs. If your family is anything like mine, they like to grab the first thing they see in the fridge and run out the door.  Here are a few more ideas for grab-and-go meals:

Chipotle Chicken Tacos
1 can diced tomatoes with garlic and onion
1 can chipotle peppers in adobe sauce (cut open and take out most of seeds)
Combine in blender divide in 6 portions; 1 in a large fry pan and 5 in quart size freezer bags.
Use 2- 3 cans of chicken and heat. Serve with black beans, onions sour cream, cheese and white rice.

Kabob Wraps
Pita bread
Kabobs or any other pre-cooked protein (meatballs, chicken, etc)
Yogurt sauce
Roll everything up in tin foil and store in fridge.
*Veggies/sauce can be stored separately and added fresh.

Breakfast Sandwiches
Whole wheat english muffins or  thin bagels
Cook one egg for each
Add meat you want (sometimes we do Canadian bacon) and a slice of cheese
Let everything cool, assemble, wrap them individually in paper towels or wax paper, and stack them in a large tupperware container.

Breakfast Burritos
Whole Wheat wraps
Scrambled eggs
Meat of choice
Shredded cheese
Black bean salsa

Breakfast Muffins

Also just another quick tip: Store pre-boiled eggs in refrigerator, grab and go as needed. 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Summery Fruit Ideas

With summer in full swing, we can all use some quick recipes to beat the heat.   I asked the LDW ladies for their favorite refreshing recipes including summery fruit. Turns out watermelon is of course a favorite:

  • Watermelon with chili, salt, lime
  • Watermelon, Korean style:
    • Cubed or balled watermelon
    • I sometimes add other fruit but not necessary
    • Ice cubes
    • Sprite
    • Splenda/sugar to taste
      • Put watermelon in bowls, add ice to make it super chilly and pour sprite over! Serve in bowls and eat with a spoon! (My kids love this in their "straw cereal bowls"). This is the first thing I ate in Korea my first trip - it's one way they cool off in the hot, humid summers.
  •  Watermelon salad with avacado, mint and feta: http://www.ilanafreddye.com/2012/06/summer-salad.html
  • Cut watermelon into slices and then use a star cookie cutter to cut it out. Put in a bowl with blueberries.
  • Peach cut up swimming in rosé wine w sugar poured in.
  • Grilled Peaches: Preheat the grill. While it heats, cut peaches in half, pit them and scoop out some extra peach. Brush the cut half with oil and place that side down in the grill. Give them 3-4 minutes at least - but you really want to wait  until they're soft. Bring them inside and fill the hollow with vanilla ice cream and drizzle with caramel.
  • Mango puree folded into cool whip. topped with chopped mango = awesomeness.
  • Fruit  infused water yesterday with oranges, strawberries, and basil.
  • Fruit salsa, I use mini vanilla wafers as the "chip" http://www.pamperedchef.com/recipe_search/recipe.jsp?id=9635
  • Cilantro, tomato, avocado black bean salad with corn and lime I throw in sea salt and some green chilli
  • Frozen Grapes
  • Sprinkle fresh pineapple slices with cinnamon and grill. Soak in Coconut Milk before grilling for an extra treat.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Vitamix Recipes

We always see a lot of talk on the LDW group about the Vitamix blender.  This month I asked the ladies to share their favorite Vitamix recipes.   If you're not in the "it gets better" phase yet, no worries!  Several can also be made in any blender, so you can join me in testing these out in whatever blenders you already have.  :)

  • Orange Pear Kale Smoothie: http://www.greenplaterule.com/recipes/orange-pear-kale-smoothie/
  • My dh's favorite breakfast smoothie: a frozen banana, a fresh apple, 1/2c of greek yogurt, big handful of raw oats, big handful of almonds, chia seeds or flax seed, a little almond milk to loosen the mixture, and a couple of shakes of cinnamon. Tastes just like apple cinnamon cookies.
  • My kids' favorites: Frozen banana, peeled fresh orange, frozen pineapple, kefir or yogurt, chia/flax, and a handful of spinach--sweeten with carrot juice if they really like sweet. Or frozen banana, frozen cherries, vanilla yogurt or plain yogurt + vanilla protein powder, big handful of almonds, chia/flax, almond milk.
  • My favorite: frozen banana, 1/4 frozen avocado, half a fresh zucchini, couple big handsful of spinach/kale, a little frozen blueberry or pineapple, chia/flax, kefir & green juice. YUMMO.
  • Green smoothie:
    • 1 orange (take the outer orange peel off)
    • 1/2 of an apple
    • 1/4 of a lime
    • 5 figs (with pit removed)
    • 1 C coconut milk
    • 2 c of Spinach or Kale
    • 1/2 c ice
    • Put in blender in that order, and blend!
    • This recipe is seriously delicious (especially if you like citrus). Enjoy!

  • Eggplant Soup:  Roasted eggplant, salt, pepper, chili powder, some skim milk to consistency, and cumin.
  • Palak Paneer/Spinach + Cheese:
    • For the Paneer:Take 1-2 cups of Ricotta cheese and spread it evenly in a shallow pan (the smaller the pan, the thicker the cheese cubes. I use the pan that came with my toaster oven and it works well). Bake at 350F until you see cracks appear or until the top turns a light golden color. Allow it to cool. Cut into cubes and save for later  The amount of cheese you want to add to the spinach is completely up to you, so you can adjust this to your preference and freeze any remainder.
    • For the Spinach:
      • Ingredients:
      • -2 bags of baby spinach
      • -1 small onion chopped
      • -2 tsp garlic
      • -2 tsp chopped ginger (or more depending on your taste, but start with this)
      • -Chilli powder to taste
      • -1/4-3/4 cup sour cream (you can omit/adjust this to make the dish healthier, but I find that it tastes amazing with more sour cream)
      • -2 tsp oil
      • -2 tsp to 1.5 tbs corriander powder (this is a huge range, but I just add it until it tastes right)
      • -2 tsp Cumin powder (again, you can add more if you deem it necessary)
      • -1 cup water (if using fresh spinach)
      • Optional: 1 tsp butter (just for flavor)
      • Optional: 1 green, serrano, or thai chilli, chopped
      • Optional: Fresh cilantro to garnish
    • Method:
      • 1. Heat the oil and add onions. When caramelized, add cumin, corriander, garlic, ginger, sour cream, chilli powder and 1 cup water.
      • 2. Add Spinach and thai chilli, stir and cover. Cook on a medium to medium-low setting until the spinach changes from a bright green to dark forest green color.
      • 3. Put half the cooked mixture into the blender, blend to desired consistency. You can adjust the proportion blended based on how much texture you prefer in the final dish.
      • 4. Add blended spinach to remainder in the pot. Allow any excess water to cook off. When finished, add cheese cubes and bam, tastiness!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Shortcuts in the Kitchen

When life gets busy (as it usually is), who wants to spend all day in the kitchen?  To help make things a little easier,  we asked the LDW ladies about their favorite shortcuts in the kitchen: 

Prep Early, Be a Kitchen Ninja Later

  • “In most quick meals the protein prep is the longest part. You can pre-cook dried beans, ground beef or turkey, shredded beef or pork, and cubed or shredded chicken, then once cooled, portion into quart bags and freeze the cooked proteins. (I do 2 cups of anything--that's the portion size I find most useful.) Do beans however you prefer, stove top or slow cooker; brown ground meat or cubed chicken on the stove top, and use a slow cooker for shredded beef, pork, or chicken.
  • “During the day (I'm a SAHM) I do bits of all the prep work for dinner for the family so that when it's time to throw it together, only takes me about 30 minutes.
  • “Microwave potatoes before baking them.  Just a few minutes of zapping can cut down the oven time significantly!
  • “I cook a bigger batch of rice and keep it in the fridge (for short term) and the freezer for longer term- then just reheat it when we are having something with rice.

Shortcuts in the Kitchen
  • “Use scissors (clean ones) to chop cilantro, parsley, green onions, etc. instead of a knife.
  • “My favorite tip is for prepping apples for my kids to snack on. I cut the apple in half, then use a melon baller to scoop out the core, then cut each half into quarters, and poof! So much easier and faster than cutting the core out of each section individually.”
  • “After opening coconut milk, tomato paste, etc if you don't use the whole can, pop them into ice cube containers and freeze then transfer to a ziplock. You can just pop one out instead of wasting a whole can every time.
  • “I keep jarred Tikka Masala and Dopiaza sauce on hand. Especially handy if I can use leftover chicken, but I usually just put chicken in the oven and let it cook while the rice cooks in my rice cooker. I can be doing other things while the rice is cooking and the chicken is baking. Cut the chicken into pieces and toss with sauce. Serve over rice (we do veggies too). Even my kiddo likes the Tikka Masala.
  • “I save my plastic grocery bags and use them as 'garbage bowl' as Rachel Ray would say, but it saves multiple trips around the corner to my trash can. When I’m done cooking, tie it closed and into the trash it goes.

Quick Recipes
  • “One quick dessert tip I got from Sandra Lee (I just love SemiHomemade!) is to purchase a pre-made angel food cake, pour a can of fruit pie filling in the center, and frost it with Cool Whip. It's super easy and goes over well. Light for summer time, too.



Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Vegan Recipes

A vegan diet is a wonderful way to not only eat healthy but also save money.  Even if you're not ready to make the full vegan plunge, incorporating a few vegan recipes into your diet would be a great way to liven up your meals with something different.  I asked the LDW ladies for vegan recipe recommendations, and soon found my stomach growling while reading these (I left out names to protect everyone's privacy, but if you'd like me to add it in next to your recipe, let me know and I can update the post):

Quinoa with Pears & Maple Vinaigrette
-1 cup quinoa
-1 large ripe pear, cleaned & diced small
-2T fresh parsley, chopped
-1/2c raw slivered almonds
-1/4c EVOO
-2T rice or apple cider vinegar
-2T real maple syrup
-1/2t Dijon mustard.
---Cook quinoa according to regular methods. In a large salad bowl, add pear, parsley, and almonds to quinoa and mix to combine. Whisk oil, vinegar, syrup & mustard; pour over salad mixture and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt & pepper.

Curried Quinoa
-1c. quinoa
-1 large carrot, chopped
-1T coconut oil
-1 celery stalk, chopped
-1/3c. raisins
-1/2c. cooked garbanzo beans or canned, drained & rinsed
-1.5-2t curry powder
-.5t sea salt
---Cook quinoa according to regular methods. When quinoa is almost finished cooking, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add carrot and cook, stirring, for 3 min. Add celery, raisins, garbanzos, curry & salt; stir & saute for 5 mins. Add cooked quinoa to skillet and combine.

Black Olive Curried Spaghetti
-3 Tbsp butter or olive oil
-7 ounces dry spaghetti
-1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
-2 tsp curry powder (Japanese curry is preferred)
-2 ounces diced pimentos (usually by the olives in the grocery store)
-3-1/2 cups chicken broth
-1 can diced black olives
---Saute onion and curry powder in butter/oil in large pan. Add chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Break spaghetti into thirds and add to boiling liquid. Cover and cook over medium heat for ~10 min. Stir in pimento and black olives. Cook uncovered for ~10 min., stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and rest for 3-5 minutes. Option: may add 1 diced green bell pepper.

Sri-Lankan Style Chickpea Curry (Kadalai Curry)
-1 potato
-1 can chickpeas
1/2 cup water
1" piece fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp. turmeric
2 Tbsp. oil
1/2 chopped onion
1 sprig curry leaves (if you can get find them - usually at an Indian/Pakistani grocery)
1 tsp. curry powder (Jaffna curry is preferred)
1 blanched & diced tomato; salt to taste
1 tsp. garam masala
1 lemon or lemon juice
--1) Peel potato and dice. Boil in salted water for 5 min. 2) Grind 1/4 cup chickpeas, 1/2 cup water. ginger, garlic and turmeric in food processor or blender. 3) Heat oil in pan. Saute onions and curry leaves until onions are translucent. 4) Add curry powder and stir for a minute before adding chickpeas and all other ingredients (except garam masala). Stir well and simmer until mix is thick & creamy. Sprinkle with garam masala and squeeze with lemon juice before serving.

Pasta and Avocado Sauce
-Pasta like usual (I use a spirooli to make zucchini noodles)
-For sauce:
2 Avacados
1/2 bunch cilantro 
1/2 bunch basil (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Handful of soaked almonds 
1/2 can coconut milk 
Chili powder to taste
3-4 cloves garlic 
1/2 lemon

---Blend all in a blender-- adding the soaked nuts last. Pour over pasta and then enjoy!

Crock Pot Beans
-Pintos, picked through. Dump in crockpot, add water to cover. Add 1-4 TBLSP Chili powder, 1-3 Tsp Onion Powder, salt and pepper to taste (after cooked). Set on high and let 'er cook. Add water if it gets low. After it smells so good you can't stand it, check it out and see if they are done. We eat them soupy with chopped avocado, tomato and onion on top drizzled with olive oil.  Add cheese and sour cream if you aren't too Vegan.  These beans are great for burritos if you use a slotted spoon and can be made into refried beans with a little water and some olive oil and elbow grease.

Choffy peanut butter cups 
-1/2 cup organic coconut oil
-1/2 cup raw honey
-Splash of Vanilla
-1/2 cup organic peanut butter
-1 cup used Choffy grounds
---Heat and blend ingredients together.  Pour into high speed blender with 1/2 cup organic peanut butter and 1 cup used Choffy grounds. Blend well and pour into small baking cups. Place in freezer to cool for 5 minutes. Take out and enjoy!

 P.S.--Just for fun: http://i.imgur.com/3cn0G4N.jpg

Friday, April 12, 2013

Flavored water

I saw this picture posted on Facebook.  I tried to find a pin for it, but none of them included the recipes.  Boo.  So here it is with the recipes from Farmacology Organics Facebook page.

"Yes another post about water lol. But if you really want to cleanse then DRINK, DRINK, DRINK. Here are 8 home made vitamin water recipes to help you keep the water flowing!

As a rule, you should try to avoid as much as possible industrial food and beverages

1) The classical : lemon/cucumber:
Mix in a pitcher: 10 cups of water + 1 cucumber and a lemon, thinly sliced + 1/4 cup fresh finely chopped basil leaf + 1/3 of finely chopped fresh mint leaves. Leave in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

2) The granite : Strawberry/Lime or Raspberry/Lime
Mix in a pitcher : 10 cups of water + 6 strawberries / 0r Raspberries and one thinly sliced lime + 12 finely chopped fresh mint leaves. Leave in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

3) The digestive : Fennel/citrus
First: infuse 1 to 3 grams of dried and crushed fennel in 150 ml of boiling water for 5-10 minutes. Allow to cool.
Mix in a pitcher: 10 cups of water + lemon juice (put the leftover lemon in the mix) + a small thinly sliced orange + 12 fresh chopped mint leaves + the infusion of fennel seeds. Leave in refrigerator overnight before serving.

4) The antiOX : Blackberry/Sage
Note that a part from the berries, sage leafs is the herb that has the highest antioxidant content.
Mix in a pitcher : 10 cups of water + 1 cup of blackberries that have been very slightly crushed + 3-4 sage leaves. Leave in refrigerator overnight before serving.

5) WATERmelon : watermelon/Rosemary
Mix in a pitcher : 10 cups of water + 1 cup of watermelon cut into cubes + 2 rosemary stems. Leave in refrigerator overnight before serving.

6) The exotic : Pineapple/Mint
Mix in a pitcher : 10 cups of water + 1 cup of pineapple cut into cubes + 12 fresh mint leaves finely chopped. Leave in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

7) The traditional : Apple/cinnamon
Mix in a pitcher : 10 cups of water + 1 cup of apple cut into cubes + 2 cinnamon sticks + 2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Leave in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

8.) The zingibir : Ginger/tea
In advance: heat 1 teaspoon of ginger in two cups of tea, let it cool down.

Mix in a pitcher: 10 cups of water with two cups of the ginger tea + 4-5 pieces of fresh ginger cut into cubes. Leave in the refrigerator overnight before serving."

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Baked Beans

This is one of my very favorite recipes - ever! It's a perfect side for a BBQ, and it makes so much that it's an easy go-to for potluck dinners.

2 medium cans pork & beans (or 3-4 soup can sized cans)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup ketchup
1 lb. bacon
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 small onion, diced
1/4 cup molasses

Cook bacon and drain off the grease. Chop the pepper and onion, and mix all ingredients. Bake at 350 degrees, covered for 1 hour and then uncovered for 1-1.5 hours. If you are in a time crunch or your dish doesn't have a lid, you can also bake it uncovered for 1.5-2 hours (just watch it so that the beans don't dry out!).