Thursday, April 21, 2011

New Fav: Power Foods

I blogged a few days ago about the cookbook "Power Foods" by Whole Living magazine. I tried the Lemon Chicken with Corn Salsa recipe and we all fell in love. Since then, I've tried a few other recipes and found them to be a success, as well. I am so excited about this book that it's ridiculous. It's making me see food from a natural point of view, as we should. Our crazy/busy lives today made convenience a priority over health. It's a sad thing to realize, but we've taken food for granted and have neglected to give our bodies what they need to function properly. When I was shopping for a few of these recipes and my regular weekly foods, I began to notice that most of my list was in the produce section. I went down a few aisles in the rest of the store but only for natural grains and dairy. There are complete aisles that I didn't even need to pass through, including the snack, soda, and boxed dinners aisles. I never noticed just how much processed food we have become used to consuming. I encourage you to find more natural foods to incorporate in your diet and pencil in your calendars time to plan meals. Natural foods expire. If something has been in your kitchen for over two weeks, it's probably not healthy for you.
I've broadened my breakfast horizons with this cookbook, as well. There is a great recipe for Fresh Muesli with Applies and Greek Yogurt. I tried it out this afternoon and it is delicious! I've never tried greek yogurt, but since there is no sugar, you can add anything you want to it. The oats and almonds were toasted in the oven for a bit and put in a container to store for the week. Another great breakfast option is a slice of toasted whole grain bread (I use Nature's Own 12 Grain) with goat cheese, smashed raspberries, and a drizzle of honey. I also bought some chocolate almond milk and put it in my coffee on some days (less fat, more vitamin E).
Runner's World magazine did a small feature on ginger root a few months back (maybe even last summer) and featured a simple recipe for ginger tea.

Ginger Tea
Set a pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, cut a small chunk off a fresh ginger root. Peel and slice in half. When water is at a boil, drop in ginger. Let boil for 5-7 minutes, until water is infused with the ginger. Put a drizzle of honey into a mug. Pour in tea. Enjoy! With the leftover tea, I like to let it cool, pour it into a water bottle, and refrigerate. When I'm ready to drink it, I add some sugar, shake, and drink! :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

And I Set Fire to the Rain

I CANNOT stop listening to Adele's newest: "21". Yes, she's only 21, but completely amazing. Her second album is better than the first, which is also amazingly stellar. How can she capture such emotion in her lyrics and voice? Get it if you haven't!

I'm on a food kick! (Well, when am I not? haha) I checked out a cookbook from Borders called "Power Foods" by the editors of Whole Living magazine. (An employee benefit is that we are able to check out books for two weeks at a time for free, as long as we return it in sellable condition.) I also decided to by my own recipe book. I'm 27 years old I don't have have one yet. I put one together for my sister for Christmas with family favorites and she can keep adding to it. I decided I wanted my own.

The first recipe I tried from "Power Foods" is Lemon Chicken with Corn Salsa. Theresa loves it and has dubbed it Lemon-Ginger Chicken due to the tasty ginger in the salsa. The ginger pulls it all together. The salsa includes corn, black beans, avocado, red onion, tomato, and jalapeno pepper. It's delicious enough to stand on its own, or be thrown onto any number of dishes. I'm going to use the left overs in a tasty taco later this week! Recipe one was a hit! And it was easy to make. The longest thing was cooking the chicken breasts, which, silly me, I bought the thickest ones I've ever seen. Whoops! Tomorrow I'm going to try a brussels sprouts recipe (I know, WHAT?) that includes pears. I want to start liking things I thought I didn't like before. Healthy stuff!

One good thing about the "Power Foods" cookbook is the sections before and after the recipes. They are full of nutritional information on the healthiest foods out there, including which oils, spices, and onions to use. There is even a glossary of scientific terms in case you were wondering what a polysaccharide is. (A carbohydrate compound made up of groups of saccharides, or "sugars." Common polysaccharides with nutritional importance are glycogen [a storage form of carbohydrates], starches, and dietary fiber.) It's a 25 dollar book, though, but I may end up buying it eventually just for the nutritional information.

Happy eating! :)