Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!

Wishing all my readers a very healthy, prosperous, creative and abundance 2013. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

My Unique Cookery: Tasty Holiday Crisp

Make this tasty and nutritious recipe a part of your holiday tradition. Freeze the cranberries and make this recipe throughout the year, too!

My Unique Cookery: Tasty Holiday Crisp

Tasty Holiday Crisp

It's that time of year when cranberries add a special delight to a number of tasty recipes. Here is one that is both healthy and delicious. It's a variation on the traditional apple crisp. Enjoy this as a holiday breakfast or dessert and watch the compliments come pouring in.

Apple-Cranberry Crisp
Serves 8

3 c. apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 c. cranberries, fresh and cut in half or chopped
¼ c. sugar
½ c. flour
½ c. walnuts or almonds, chopped
1 t. cinnamon
4 T. butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350.
Combine apples, cranberries, cinnamon and ½ of sugar in mixing bowl until fruit is evenly coated.

Place fruit mixture into ungreased baking dish.

Mix flour, nuts, butter and remaining sugar in medium-sized bowl. Sprinkle mixture over top of fruit combination.

Place baking dish into preheated oven. Bake for 50 minutes, or until you can poke the apples easily with a fork. Mixture will be bubbly and lightly brown when done.

145 calories, 1g protein, 4g sat fat, 4g mono fat, 15mg chol, 2g fiber, 18g carb

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Friday, November 02, 2012

Quick & Tasty Banana Spread

Hi my favorite readers! How many times have you bought bananas, only to find them getting overly ripened before you had a chance to eat them? Instead of tossing them aside, turn them into spread.

You can use the spread on toast, bread, in celery sticks, as a pita chip dip or simply as a side dish for your meal. This makes a great addition to your holiday menu.

Banana Spread
1 banana, peeled

Use a cereal bowl. Place the banana into the bowl and mash thoroughly with a fork. If you want more taste, add cinnamon and/or nutmeg to your taste.

Store leftovers in the fridge.

How quick, tasty and easy was this?

Find interesting? Kindly share with everyone you can think of....

Friday, October 12, 2012

Cheap & Tasty Holiday Brew

Hi my favorite readers! It's that time of year when thoughts of pumpkins, spices and all good nices come to mind. It's also the time when food manufacturers bomboard our marketplace shelves with a variety of tasty goodies. One of those goodies is pumpkin spice coffee and beverages. Instead of spending big bucks on any of these manufactured brews....make your own. It's cheap, easy and tasty.

When preparing your morning coffee brew, or espresso, place a pinch of spices on the top of the coffee. Cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg – these are the traditional holiday spices. Use any variety of spices to please your palate. Make certain to use less amounts of ginger, cloves and nutmeg since they are much more powerful than the cinnamon. I find using more cinnamon always works out best. You may find otherwise.

Simply brew your coffee as usual. The smell of coffee is always appealing. Adding the spices will add an additional pleasant aroma to the surrounding air. Who doesn't like that?

Go for it. Have fun and explore! Not only will your taste buds thank you, your pocketbook will be smiling. :)

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Monday, October 08, 2012

Quick & Easy Veggie Soup

We're all pressed for time. Many times it's too easy to choose a processed meal. Instead, make your own batch of veggie soup. It's quick, easy and oh so cheap...

Cut up your favorite veggies. Include broccoli, carrots, onions, potatoes and a clove or two of fresh garlic. If you don't have fresh garlic, use bottled minced or garlic powder. Mix up all the veggies. Lightly coat with olive oil. Mix thoroughly to coat all veggies.

Place veggies into roasting pan. Lightly sprinkle with Italian seasoning or basil, rosemary, thyme. 

Place container into 350 oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until you can easily poke a fork in to the veggies. Refrigerate leftovers for future the below veggie soup.

Either open a can of prepared veggie broth. Or, use your homemade variety. Add some roasted veggies. VIOLA! There you have a quick, easy and budget-friendly way to enjoy a healthy meal.

Serve with wholegrain crackers, bread or noodles.

Find interesting? Kindly share.. 

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Thursday, October 04, 2012

Pass The Quinoa!!

Quinoa is an old-world grain that has been around for centuries. My students always love seeing how it's used in dishes. It makes for a great side dish, a morning cereal, a main ingredient in stir frys and a variety of other delights. Plus, you can bake with the flour.

Quinoa contains numerous beneficial nutrients. Nutrients include fiber which aids cardiovascular and digestive health. It provides a natural appetite suppressant, to fill you up and cause you to eat less. Who can't use that?

Other nutrients include:

  • Calcium helps maintain bone strength and density.
  • Copper, which helps your body absorb iron.
  • Zinc, which supports a healthy immune system. Do you take zinc supplements when you feel a cold coming on? Or take a hit when you have a cold to lessen symptoms? If not, you're missing out on a treasured nutrient.
  • Iron, to keep your blood healthy and nourished

Quinoa contains rich amounts of potassium, the mineral needed to help regulate heart beats, maintain a healthy blood pressure level, lower anxiety levels, prevent muscle spasms and contractions, protect against stroke – wow. Who knew all this could come out of a grain?

Experiment with quinoa. When cooked, it resembles Saturn. You know, the planet with a ring around it? The texture is pleasant, also.

Go quinoa! Enjoy!

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Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Enough With Organic Hype

Hi my favorite readers! There has been so much hype lately about the pros and cons of eating organic food that I thought it would be wise to provide a first-hand account.

Some claim that the foods "cost too much". It is true that organically grown foods can cost a few dollars more to buy than the nonorganic versions. However, what is the standard of measurement? What are you basing the cost on? What are you comparing it to? What does "too much" mean, anyways? "Too much" compared to what? 

You can buy organically grown produce at your local farmer's markets. The cost is extremely comparable to the nonorganic versions of the same foods found at your local supermarket. Understand that your supermarket - to matter what type of food is sells - has to pay for its shipping, storage, worker salaries, and building overhead and a plethora of other retail-oriented costs. All these expenses are reflected in higher food prices. Take that into consideration. This means that even the cheapest or organic foods can cost higher when purchased at a commercial supermarket.

NOTE: There is something "fishy" about a large supermarket chain getting into organic foods. How do we really know these foods are grown this way? Do we really know the types of fertilizers used? That entire field just does not settle correctly with me. I do not trust big supermarket chains, I don't care how "consumer friendly" they claim to be. Profit is their bottom line, no matter how they try to get around it.

Is a better tasting food worth the so-called extra price? You bet it is. Organically grown food, most notably from farmer's markets, simply tastes better than nonorganic varieties. There is no way someone is going to convince me otherwise. I know this for a fact. Pick a carrot from you or your friend's garden, clean it up and taste it.  Now....peel that store bought, nonorganic carrot and taste it. The non-organic variety will be tasteless. There simply is no comparison.

Getting back to eating true organic foods is really tasting food as originally intended. There are no artificial pesticides, sweeteners, additives or other signs of processing found.

Get your organic items from farmer's markets, food co-ops, local organic gardens or grow your own   for the best deals around. It's easier than you think.

It is sad to hear and read about "experts" claiming that these foods cost too much as a way to justify whatever point they are trying to make. Who are these "experts" anyways? Check your sources.

Find interesting? Kindly share...
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Sunday, September 02, 2012

Tasty & Fiberful French Toast

Hi my favorite readers! Who does not enjoy some delicious French toast every now and then? Did you know that you can add some pizzazz by having some wholegrain fiber? The whole grain not only adds some extra texture, but tastes good. How do you do this, you ask? I'm glad you asked...

Here's one of my newest recipes. It's quick, cheap and easy. Enjoy! I call it....

Oatilicious French Toast
serves 2

You will need:
2 aluminum pie pans
1 mixing utensil
1 frying pan
1 spatula

4-6 pieces of your favorite bread
1-2 eggs, depending upon your taste
¼ cup lowfat or fat-free milk, dairy or soy
¼ cup oat bran

Place the milk, eggs and cinnamon in one pie pan. Beat thoroughly. For extra taste, add in some nutmeg.

Place the oat bran in the other pie pan.

Heat the skillet until a drop of water starts bouncing. Add a little oil, if needed. You don't need the oil if you are using a nonstick skillet.

Dip the bread into the milk mixture.
Then, dip the bread slice into the oat bran. Turn and coat other side of bread.

Place bread into skillet and cook until lightly browned. Flip over when needed.

Remove and serve with fresh fruit, syrup, jam or any other favorite topping.

Leftovers can be kept in fridge for a couple of days.

This recipe is particularly delicious with pumpernickel bread. Experiment with your favorites!

Find interesting and tasty? Kindly share....
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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Healthy, Low-Cal Snow Cones

Hi, my favorite readers! With so much heat around lately, it's always nice to hear about ways to stay cool. That includes drinking cold beverages. Here's a nice, cheap and easy one to enjoy...

You need a food process, chopper or blender for this...

Place a couple handfuls of ice cubes into the pitcher or container.
Blend, or mix, until the ice turns into thin snow.

Remove shaved ice into scoop into a serving cup.

Squeeze either a fresh lemon or orange over the ice.
Viola! A tasty relief to the hot, dog days of summer...Plus, it's fantastic for weight management. Very, very low calories...who doesn't like that?

For variety, try any number of your favorite 100% fruit juices such as pineapple and/or apple. Pureed fruits, complete with juice, offer another alternative. Use your imagination and go for it!

Enjoy! Find interesting? Kindly share...
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Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Making Your Own Energy Bars

It's great to have a high-protein snack or drink to replenish your body after a good workout. With so many energy bars available on the marketplace anymore, it can be confusing about what to buy. Plus, have you read the ingredients on these bars? There is a way for you to take control over what you put into your body while getting away from eating those commercially manufactured bars. Make your own energy bars. It's quicker and easier than you may think.

By making your own energy bars you know exactly what goes into the end product. Homemade versions contain no additives, flavorings, artificial sweeteners or harmful preservatives. Since all recipes contain some sort of fat, as a binding agent, you can adjust which type you use to satisfy your personal taste and health needs. Making your own also allows you to determine how large a portion you want.

Here's a recipe I adapted from a local television station to suit my tastes. You can also adjust ingredients to suit your taste buds.

You will need:
9x13” baking pan
medium saucepan
medium mixing bowl
cookie sheet
large mixing bowl

Dry Ingredients:
2 cups oats
½ cup sliced almonds
½ cup crushed walnuts
¼ cup dried cranberries
¼ cup raisins
¼ cup chopped dates
¼ cup dried apricots, chopped

Wet Ingredients:
¼ cup honey
¼ maple syrup
¼ cup barley malt syrup
1 cup peanut or almond butter, creamy variety
2 T canola or sunflower oil

Preheat oven to 350.
Evenly spread oats and nuts onto ungreased cookie sheet.
Place in oven and bake for 10 minutes, until lightly brown.

Combine wet ingredients in medium saucepan.
Cook over low to medium heat until blended, about 10 minutes.
Stir continuously.

Combine wet and dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Toss until dry mixture is thoroughly coated with wet mixture.

Place mixture into 9x13” baking dish. Firmly press into place until the entire pan is filled.

Refrigerate for 2 hours, or until mixture is firm.

Cut into your desired serving sizes.

Find interesting? Kindly share.... 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Need Quick Energy?

Instead of taking a swig of those highly-caffeinated "energy" drinks, running to your doctor for a prescription or popping one of those over-the-counter "high energy" pills, here's a natural solution for getting more energy...

Eat some broccoli. We all know that broccoli is now labeled as a superfood since it is so high in a wide variety of nutrients. Well, I know it as being a natural medicine for increasing my energy level.

For years, whenever I feel "too pooped to participate", I simply steam up a batch of broccoli and enjoy it. No sauces, cheeses, butter or coating of any kind. Just plain and simple broccoli at its finest. I have found that the organic variety is tastier than mass-manufactured form, but has the same energy effect. 

So, the next time you feel run down and so tired you cannot function properly, try this natural and nutritious solution.

Good luck and enjoy!

Find interesting? Kindly share...

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Baggy or Puffed Eyes? Turn to Your Kitchen..

Pardon my lateness in posting. Google updated Blogger and, well, I finally figured out how to get in... is always fun to learn about natural ways for taking care of health ailments. It saves expenses on prescriptions and/or over-the-counter remedies. Plus, natural remedies in the form of food provide some nutrition.

Have you ever woke up with baggy eyes and needed to go out into public quickly? Try raising your head higher than your body while sleeping to prevent this from happening. Sleeping in this position improves blood circulation. Place a rolled up towel underneath your mattress, directly below where you will be resting your head.

Eat less salt. Salt is a known culprit for retaining water all throughout your body.

Apply cold potato slices over your eyes while lying down. Cold cucumber slices work just as well. 

If you don't have those veggies available, soak a large cotton compress (like the kind you put over a wound) in cold milk. Lie down and place this cold compress over your closed eyes. Keep it on for 10-15 minutes.

So, when you find yourself with puffy or baggy eyes...turn to your kitchen. Not only will your pocketbook thank you, but you won't be supporting those out-of-control pharmaceutical companies. Go natural...

Find interesting? Kindly share....

Monday, April 16, 2012

Quick Grain Cereal

Instead of buying instant commercially-made whole grain cereal, here is an easy and convenient way to make your own heart healthy delight.'s cheaper than the store-bought variety.

Buy some oat bran in your bulk food section of your local supermarket or online whole foods store.

Put 1/2 cup oat bran into your cereal bowl.
To add variety, add some dried cranberries, dates, raisins and cinnamon.

Bring 1 cup water to boil in either the microwave or on your stovetop.

Pour a little of the water onto the cereal. Stir and keep adding water until you reach your desired consistency.

You can add milk, if desired.

Viola! There it is. You have your own healthy version of a quick and instant whole grain cereal within two minutes. And, you didn't have to open any paper envelopes or boxes to do it. :)

When traveling, simply put the dried cereal mixture in a ziploc bag or other portable container. Take out your desired portion and add water. This is great for hikes and outdoor outings, also.

Find interesting? Kindly share...

Thursday, March 08, 2012

An Easy Way to Cut Down on Sugar

With refined sugar being so prevalent in our food supply, it can sometimes seem like an overwhelming task for reduce your consumption. There is an easy way to do it, though.

Start purchasing products that contain zero amounts of refined sugars or other sugar forms. Sugar forms include refined sugars such as white sugar, molasses, brown sugar, powdered sugar, syrups, high fructose corn syrup and turbinado sugar.

Other sugar forms include maltodextrin, sucrose, glucose and honey - to name a few from the top of my head.

Read the labels to be certain. Labels contain a wealth of information about the product's nutritional value.

Instead of buying your traditional style peanut butter, for instance, that contains added sugar, start buying the brands that are labeled as "all natural". "All natural" usually means the product does not contain any additives, preservatives or commercially-added sugars and/or fats. In the case of peanut butter, it means the product contains only peanuts and maybe salt. Better yet, use one of those machines that grinds the peanuts while you watch.

Getting used to foods in their least processed states is the easiest way to make the transition away from the dependence upon sugar.

Good luck!

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Hi everyone,
I need to apologize for the appearance of my last blog post. I don't know why the text came out so large and unappealing. :?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

To all my U.S. readers, Happy Valentine's Day! Remember to share smiles, laughter, conversation and love on this special day.

Everyone deserves decadent treats every now and then. Here are some homemade chocolate covered cherries to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Chocolate Covered Cherries

Cover a cookie sheet with waxed paper.

Melt 2-3 squares of unsweetened chocolate in a double boiler.
Dip the cherries into the chocolate.
Place the cherries onto the cookie sheet.
Put cookie sheet into refrigerator.
Cool until chocolate hardens.

For extra taste and crunchiness, roll the cherries in crushed nuts after dipping in chocolate.


Find interesting? Kindly share...

Monday, January 23, 2012

Are Diet Programs Necessary?

OK, like millions of people, you have made your New Year's resolution to lose weight and get in shape. A multitude of diet programs are bombarding our airwaves claiming to do everything they can to help you achieve your goals. All involve a cost, though. What a surprise.

Why is it that we have convinced ourselves that weight loss involves a group effort? I understand how some may believe they cannot lose weight without the support of a group. Whatever it takes, but why do so many people believe we need to purchase prepared foods from a “weight loss expert”? I find it perplexing. It's a form of brainwashing.

There is no miracle formula for losing weight and eating healthy. You do not have to belong to a diet program and take part in a commercially-prepared food program to succeed.

First of all, remove the word “diet” from your vocabulary. It signifies scarcity and leaves you feeling deprived. Instead, use “meal plan”.

Follow healthy eating rules and you can do it. The takes more work than that needed to succeed in a commercially-operated program. You have to take control over your eating habits...not someone else (who charges a fee).

Fresh fruits and vegetables are low calorie, highly nutritious foods. Eat more of them. They fill you up, causing you to eat less of other foods. It's surprising how many folk do not like veggies and/or fruit. Look at these people and you will probably see someone who is overweight.

Learn to appreciate the true flavors of food instead of having them covered in high-fat sauces and other goop.

Mainly....stop eating so many processed foods. Do you realize how many calories you will save by simply doing this?'ll still get good taste. That is, if you get away from those “healthy” processed foods that are included in many diet programs.

Stay tuned for suggestions on how to take control of and change your eating habits...

Find interesting? Kindly share...

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

No Time for Hot Cereal?

Sometimes we either oversleep and miss the alarm or simply don't want to take the time to eat hot cereal in the morning. Either way, there is a quick and easy solution to fuel yourself for the day ahead.

Take some time the next before to make a couple batches of your hot cereal. Add dried raisins, dates, nuts or sliced fresh apples to your favorite whole grain cereal. A good combination is some oats, quinoa and flaxseeds for your whole grain cereal base.

Cook up your cereal over medium heat until done. Stir constantly to prevent sticking.

Remove from heat and let cool.

Place into airtight containers. Put into the refrigerator.

When you start your next day, simply take out the prepared cereal mixture and scoop your portion into a cereal bowl.

Heat in a microwave for two minutes to warm thoroughly.

Serve with soy or dairy milk and sweetener, if needed. Or, you can skip the milk. Sprinkle with some cinnamon for extra sweetness and nutrition.

How easy and convenient is this?

Find interesting? Kindly share...