Sunday, February 25, 2018

Teriyaki Tofu Fried Rice

If you happen to have a Trader Joe's near you, you should definitely take advantage of the great prices and large selection of great products.  Kristen and I usually make the 45 minute one way trip a couple times per month to stock up the pantry and refrigerator/freezer.  One meal we love to make is Teriyaki Tofu Fried Rice.  You can get everything from Trader Joe's.  It is a simple, delicious meal with minimum ingredients.

Here it is:
*Press 1 package of extra firm organic tofu for 20 minutes.
*Cut into 1/2" cubes and marinate in TJ's Island Soyaki for 30 minutes.
*Bake at 325'F for 45 minutes (flip at 15 & 30 minutes) we used our new Breville Smart Oven Air.
*Stir fry TJ's Vegetable Fried Rice for 5 minutes.
*Add cooked tofu to the rice mixture and serve with Coconut Aminos or Sweet Chili Sauce (both available at Trader Joe's)
I hope you enjoy it!

By shopping at Trader Joe's you are able to save on your grocery bill, while still finding a wide selection of organic foods, produce, breads, frozen fruits and veggies, treats and even wine.

Have a great week.
Be kind.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Don't Get Cheesy!

"Some foods are fattening, others are addictive.  Cheese is both...loaded with calories, high in sodium, packing more cholesterol than steak and sprinkled with hormones.  If cheese were any worse it would be Vaseline." 
Neal Barnard, MD. PCRM

The average American consumes 33 lbs. of cheese per year.  The U.S. produces more cheese and dairy products than any other country in the world.
Most everyone LOVES cheese.  
It is the hardest food to give up when going to a plant-based diet. Cheese and dairy contain casein protein which turns into casomorphin in our stomachs when digested.  These are morphine like compounds that attach to the brain receptors the same way heroin and other narcotics do.  We become addicted to the pleasure our body receives when eating that big slice of cheese pizza.
You can check out an earlier post on "Got Milk"
For an even more interesting and informative listen, check out "Neal Barnard MD." on the Rich Roll podcast. His ground-breaking research on "Breaking The Cheese addiction" is very enlightening.

There are many dairy-free cheese on the market now to help you break the addiction.  Just remember, they can be highly processed with a lot oils, keep them to a minimum.  But they are helpful in removing dairy from your diet. 
 Here are a few brands:
*Daiya: makes great shredded products for homemade pizza, etc.
*Kite Hill: makes a cream cheese that is awesome on a sweet potato, sprout sandwich.
*Follow Your Heart: Everything from cheeses to Mayonnaise.
*Miyoko's Kitchen: Some of the finest plant-based butters and cheeses.

You can also make your own cheese at home. The time investment is well worth the health benefits from lack of dairy in these delicious cheeses.  Recently, Kris and I purchased "This Cheese is Nuts" by Julie Piatt. We invested in a Breville Smart Oven Air which also has a dehydrator, which is needed in producing most "cheeses" in her book. The Breville is a great investment, almost eliminating the kitchen oven.  We've made "air baked" fries, pizza (there is one baking right now!) and its a beautiful kitchen appliance.
We created are first batch of  Ahimsa Goat Cheese out of soaked sprouted almonds.  You have to get the cookbook for the recipe.

Creating and cooking foods together as a family is very rewarding and therapeutic.  If you have young children, get them involved, not only will it produce great foods, but lasting memories and bonds.  It will help them live a self-productive and healthy lifestyle.
I have to go, pizza is done.

Have a great week.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

The Power of Purple

For optimum health we should "eat the rainbow".  Purple veggies and fruits are not very commonly consumed.  Generally, the more colorful the fruit of veggie, the more nutrients it contains.  And also more cancer-fighting properties and antioxidants.  Purple foods contain antioxidant nutrients called anthocyanins, resveratrol and polyphenols which give them their deep color but also protects against cell damage. Antioxidants are substances that help the body fight against damaging, unstable molecules called free radicals.  These molecules are formed during digestion, exercise, stress and exposure to environmental pollution and chemicals.  These must be neutralized quickly, because the cellular level damage lead to disease and premature aging.
Here are 6 benefits from purple fruits and veggies:
*Reduces the risks of Alzheimer's disease. 
*Boosts memory.
*Protects cells from damage.
*Helps fight inflammation.
*Promotes longevity.
*Reduces the risk of cancer and slows the progression of cancer.

Here are several purple foods to add to your diet: 
Purple cabbage
Purple potatoes
Purple cauliflower
Acai berries
Purple carrots 
Red lettuce
Purple grapes

The best way to maximize the benefits of these is to eat a wide variety each day.  Try to get one purple fruit or veggie each day.  Eat a combination of cooked and raw because some nutrients are better absorbed when cooked, while others raw.  Try to consume those that are in season, ex: berries in the summer, while cauliflower and cabbage in fall/winter.. Remember sometimes frozen can be better then fresh.

Have a great week.
Be kind.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Recommended Reading 02/04/18

Since today is Super Bowl Sunday (I prefer to watch Premier League Soccer) I want to begin with an article from GQ:
 The 300lb Vegan; NFL defensive lineman David Carter , you can also hear an interview with him on the Rich Roll podcast.
Then from one extreme to the other:
The Real Life Diet of a bad ass rock climber, Alex Honnold, who lives in a van.  Then check out this video from The North Face, be prepared to get a little anxious watching him climb.  For more awesome climbing, check out Valley Uprising available on Netflix.  Alex accomplishes even more amazing feats.
Here are some great tips(in case you are stuck at home)on doing an exercise workout without going to the gym: NO EXCUSES!
For an easy healthy bread recipe try this vegan, gluten-free Power Bread.
We all know that stepping outside is a simple, refreshing way to be our best.  Especially when we are stressed and under pressure.  Check out: This 5-minute visualization technique can change the world.

Have a great week.
Be kind.