Thursday, May 26, 2011

On Target Living Blog: Role of Fruits and Vegetables on Our Health

This book changed my life and way of thinking when it comes to food!  If you are starting to eat healthy or are wanting to start eating healthy, Chris really does a great job of explaining why we should be eating healthy and how our body processes food.  I felt like I was in a health class that was easy to understand and very inspiring.  He is definitely a major nutritionist and eats only the best of everything, but you just have to remember to take it one step at a time, which he encourages anyways.  Very inspiring and motivating!

Here is a link to his blog that is a fun and interesting take on vegetables and fruits!

On Target Living Blog: Role of Fruits and Vegetables on Our Health: "It's been said that God first separated the salt water from the fresh, made dry land, planted a garden, made animals and fish… all before ma..."

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

12 Grain Bread

This is the most fluffy, light, and hearty bread you will ever eat!  We love it so much!! Thanks Michelle :) 

6 c. hot tap water
2 c. 9-grain cracked cereal (uncooked)
1/3 c. millet
1/3 c. sesame seed
1/3 c. flax seed
1 c. raw sunflower seeds
½ c. vital gluten
3 T. yeast

2/3 c. honey or ½ c. Xagave
2/3 c. canola oil
½ c.  powdered lecithin or 2 T. liquid lecithin
2 T. salt
3 T. dough enhancer
Whole wheat flour (approximately 10-12 cups total)

Measure first eight ingredients and 2 cups wheat flour into Bosch bowl.  Mix gently to fold ingredients together.  Let sit ten minutes. 

Mix oil & honey together (and lecithin if using the liquid form).  Add to mixture.  In a small bowl combine 2 more cups of flour, lecithin (powdered), dough enhancer & salt. 

Slowly add those dry ingredients to the dough mixture.  Continue to add whole wheat flour 1 cup at a time until mixture cleans sides of the bowl.  (Approximately 10-12 cups total) Do not add too much flour.  As soon as the side of the bowl looks clean, stop adding flour.  That is the biggest mistake most people make.  The dough is very sticky!  Knead 10 minutes.

Spray counter and hands with canola or olive oil spray to prevent sticking.  Turn dough mixture onto surface and knead to form a ball.  Cut into six pieces and put into 6 loaf pans (or see other combinations below last picture).  Cover loosely with a cloth or put inside grocery bags.  Let rise till about one inch above pans (about 45 min to 1 hr).  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. If tops get too brown during baking, then cover loosely with a piece of aluminum foil.  If baking rolls or baguettes, they will only need around 20 minutes.  Just watch them and take them out when they're light golden brown.

After they come out of the oven, immediately turn them onto a cooling rack so they don’t go soggy.  If you prefer the crusts to be softer, spray them immediately after coming out of the oven with a water bottle all around the loaf.  The water quickly evaporates, but it softens the crust.  

 This is what it looks like when you have your grains soaking during the first step.

After the first step while my grains are soaking, I get my liquids ready (oil, then honey, then liquid lecithin).  I also get all my dry ingredients mixed in with a cup or two of flour (dough enhancer, salt, and lecithin if powder).

This makes a large batch.  I can get six 8-10 inch loaves or five loaves and 1 pan of rolls or four loaves and three baguettes (I do this combo most because we love eating sandwiches on sub style bread).  The pan is available online or at any cooking store.  It has three wells in it with small holes all over the bottom of it. 

P.S. This bread is very light and fluffy if made with white wheat kernels.  I definitely reccommend grinding your own wheat because after a couple of days you loose 70% of your nutrition from the flour.  If you're just starting, you can surely use store bought flour, but to power pack your bread, try grinding your own.  If you have leftovers, place them in your freezer unless you're going to it within a couple of days, then you could store it in your refrigerator.  I prefer to just grind a ton and freeze it in a large Rubbermaid container. 

Bon Appetit

A good friend of mine from my old Gourmet Club in California has so kindly put this post together of me making the bread, so if you would like to see some videos of it being made, click on this link.  Thanks Nanci!!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Tangy Fish Picatta

This has to be my new favorite fish dinners!  My kids love fish and they love lemon sauces, so they gobbled this one up!!  Honestly, they were begging for more.  Even my littlest boy ate it because he thought it was a chicken nugget.  The fish is sliced very thin, so they're really crispy and light.  I tell my boys that the capers are little pickles, so they really go for them!   I hope you enjoy this one as much as my family does.

Fish Picatta
(Serves about 4-6 depending on how much fish you buy)

1- 1 ½ lb. Alaskan salmon or any white fish (Opah, Mahi Mahi, etc..)
½ c. flour
2 eggs
2 c. panko bread crumbs (Japanese bread crumb found on the baking aisle)
¼ c. olive oil
½ c. cooking white wine
¼ c. fresh lemon juice
2 T. shallots, minced
2 t. Dijon mustard
2 T. capers
4 T. cold, unsalted butter, cubed
8 thin lemon slices
1 T. parsley

Slice fish into ¼ inch thin filets.  Place flour in a shallow dish.  Whisk together eggs in another shallow dish.  Place panko crumbs into another small dish.  Lightly salt and pepper the fish.  Dredge fish in the flour on both sides.  Carefully dip the slices into the eggs, then into the panko. 

Place breaded cutlets on a rack set over a baking sheet.  Cover cutlets and chill for 10 minutes.  (I didn’t have time to chill them, so I didn’t do this step and it turned out fine)

Heat ¼ c. olive oil in a large 12 inch non-stick cooking skillet.  Saute cutlets until crisp and golden on both sides, approximately 4 minutes total.  Transfer cutlets to a paper towel lined plate.  (You could always bake them until done for a lighter, healthier version, however, the crispy texture from the olive oil is divine!)

Deglaze skillet with wine and reduce by half, about 3 minutes.  Whisk in lemon juice, shallots, Dijon and capers.  Simmer sauce until reduced about 3 minutes.  Reduce heat to low.  Whisk in butter until melted.  Add lemon slices and parsley.  Season sauce with salt and pepper if needed.  Divide sauce evenly over each serving of salmon.

Serve with any type of rice you would like and a vegetable. 
Bon Appetit

Green Smoothie

This is my new absolute favorite!  I feel so good after drinking it.  If you have been doing smoothies for a while now, you might be ready for a green smoothie!!  This drink will leave you feeling full and full of energy!  I got the basis for it from the Green Smoothie Girl.  She has some amazing recipes and has taught me a lot.  Her website is wonderful if you're interested in more raw, super healthy smoothie recipes.  She is a little extreme for most, but has a lot of good information.

Basic Green Smoothie recipe
(These amounts are for a large Vita-Mix container- you may need to 1/2 the recipe)

3 c. water (you can also substitute 1 c. of juice for 1 c. of the water)
Handfuls of greens (Organic Spinach, Kale, Chard, etc..)
1/4 of a lime or lemon (skin on if you have a Vita-Mix or Blend Tec)
1 c. frozen mixed berries (you can always change it up with pineapple, mango, etc...)
1-2 c. frozen strawberries
1 banana
1-2 T. flax oil or flax seed (great way to get your Omega 3's for the day)
Agave, to taste (about 2-4 T. depending on how much smoothie you're making)
Protein powder (optional) I prefer Hemp or Rice protein powder, vanilla flavored
Greek Yogurt (optional) 

This is what chard looks like.  It is very nutritious and doesn't have a strong flavor.

 Fill your container with the water and lime or lemon.  Then stuff it full of greens.  Mix until well blended.

This is what it looks like after you've blended all your greens.  You can always add more greens if you would like.  It just depends on your taste buds.  The more you drink them, the more greens you'll want to put in them.  To start, just keep it half greens, half fruit. 

Then add your frozen berries, bananas, and the rest of the ingredients.

 Blend until smooth.  It should turn a deep purple color.  If it is not mixing well, add more water to help the ingredients move along.  I find it's easier to drink more when it's not so thick.  You also avoid brain freeze as well. :)  Then just add things according to taste.  If you like creamier smoothies, add more banana and yogurt.  If you like them sweeter, add more berries & agave.  The protein powder is good to add if you're using this as a meal replacement or an after workout drink.  If it ends up being too thick, add more water.  If it's too thin, add more frozen berries.  Just play with it until you find the perfect combination for your family! 

Pour 2-4 cups into a glass or jar and enjoy!!  It is very refreshing and rejuvenating!  I hope you like it as much as I do.  The kids even like this one!  Another good combination is to start with all the greens, then just use blackberries and a lemon instead of a lime and mixed berries.  That is Grandma Steph's favorite!
Green smoothies are only good for two days, so if you have leftovers you can put them in a glass jar and store them in the fridge for two days or freeze them!
Bon Appetit

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Chinese Salad

You'll have to excuse the picture on this one.  It's just the leftovers from my girlfriends coming over for lunch, but they wanted me to blog it, so here you go!  Believe me, it's a beautiful salad with great colors throughout when you present it.  Hope you enjoy it :)

Chinese Salad
Napa Cabbage
Red Cabbage
Romaine lettuce
Yellow & red bell pepper
Brown Rice
Toasted almonds
Sesame seeds

1 ¼ c. Canola oil
½ c. Braggs (or soy sauce)
1 ½ t. Ginger, freshly grated (or bottled)
1 T. Sesame oil
1 t. Tahini (sesame seed paste)
¼ t. Pepper
¼ c. Agave, raw (or sugar-less healthy)
2 T. Water

Blend all ingredients in a blender  for 30 seconds.   Taste it and adjust according to how you like your dressings.   Depending on how big you make your salad, this dressing should last for a week or two in your fridge, if you have leftovers. 
Bon Appetit