Carrot Dill Salad

carrot-dill-salad

This carrot dill salad is based on one of my favorite sides from Yalla in Culver City. It’s the perfect side of freshness to a heavy meat dish, and it’s really simple to make. I prefer to make it ahead of time so the carrots and raisins have time to soak up the dressing and soften a bit. The raisins, carrots, and honey all lend this dish a surprising sweetness, so even the pickiest of eaters will be happy for an extra serving. This can easily be transported to a BBQ or serve it with brunch on Easter morning.

Carrot Dill Salad
 
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Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 10 oz bag of shredded carrots (trader joes)
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 1 cup of golden raisins
  • 3 tbsp raw red wine vinegar (Eden)
  • 3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
  • the juice of one orange
  • 1 tsp of wildflower honey
  • ½ tsp sea salt
Instructions
  1. Shred carrots in food processor if you didn't buy carrots that have already been shredded. Add to large bowl.
  2. Chop fresh dill and add to bowl.
  3. Mix in raisins, red wine vinegar, olive oil, the juice of one orange, honey and sea salt.
  4. Mix through and enjoy.
Notes
Make it ahead so that the carrots and raisins can soak up the dressing.

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Easy Vegan Chai

easy vegan chai

This easy vegan chai, will save you time and money in the morning. I wish I could take credit, but my husband Shameer came up with this recipe. I debated adding this to my website, since I use processed ingredients. However, convenience is king in the morning and both the Vanilla Almond Milk and Chai Mix are dairy free and non-gmo. However, they both contain cane sugar, so if you are being strict about your sugar intake than this recipe won’t be for you.

vegan chai ingredients

Both these ingredients combined in a 1:1 ratio, make the best vegan chai ever. It tastes just a regular chai latte, so your friends and family likely won’t be able to tell the difference.

Easy Vegan Chai
 
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Serves: 1 cup
Ingredients
  • 1 cup of Vanilla Almond Breeze Almond Milk
  • 1 cup of Oregon Chai Mix
Instructions
  1. Combine ingredients 1:1 in a large sauce pan, and heat until desired temperature.
Notes
After trial and error the Vanilla Almond Breeze Almond Milk tastes the best with the Chai mix for the perfect hint of Vanilla and the right about of sweetness. Other milks can be used, but flavor may vary.

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Milk and Eggs Delivery Review

milk and eggs delivery

Make a resolution to cook more in the New Year? I know I did.  Meal Planning using farm fresh healthy ingredients is one of the most important things you can do for you health and for your pocket book. Even though I would love to go to farmer’s markets and I generally don’t mind grocery shopping, sometimes, our schedules can get pretty insane and we need help.

That’s where Milk and Eggs comes in. They are a delivery service in Los Angeles that delivers you fresh milk, eggs, dairy, meats, vegetables, and fruits on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Membership & Delivery are FREE and orders can be changed anytime. All vegetables, fruits, dairy, eggs, and meats will be the freshest available, and locally acquired.

The website was really easy to use. I did my order à la carte. I choose a delivery date, and it was delivered on time before I had to leave for work on Monday morning. Which was awesome, by the way, having a fully stocked fridge in the beginning of the work week. It forced me to cook more, since I didn’t want food going to waste, which saved me money from going out to eat or ordering delivery. Yes, I’m not perfect and don’t always cook or eat healthy food. Life happens, and all you can do is your best, and get help where you can. Did some waste happen? Yes, but that happens when I go grocery shopping normally as well.

Overall, I’m really happy with the service and can definitely see myself using it in the future.  Wishing everyone a Happy New Year!

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookies - Healing and Eating

I’ve been baking chocolate chip cookies like crazy, trying to come up with the perfect paleo friendly chocolate chip cookie recipe. Let me tell you it has not been easy. I still might tweak this recipe a bit, but I’ll update the website if I try something new I like better.

I used to follow the traditional Nestle chocolate chip cookie recipe, before I starting following a healthier diet, and I totally rocked at making chocolate chip cookies. So, my expectations for what it should taste and look like are pretty high. These tasted how I wanted them too, even with the substitutions, but they were very finicky with spreading and over browning.

To reduce spreading I also used a higher temperature and shorter cooking time, and I also chilled it in the freezer for a half hour and then moved the cookie dough to the fridge as I was baking, so the dough would stay nice and firm. I also tried stacking two scoops of cookie dough on top of one another so it created a larger cookie, which I’m happy to say turned out pretty well. Plus, who doesn’t like a larger cookie. My scoops were two tsp each, so when I doubled up the cookie dough it was four tsp total.

I also found that the higher temperature made the edges brown and crispy and left the middle gooey, which is how I like it. I also like my chocolate chip cookies a bit underdone, but you can easily let it cook a bit longer if that is your personal preference.  I plan on continuing my quest for the perfect paleo chocolate chip cookie, but I’m liking my results so far, so I thought I would post my progress, and of course my current recipe.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
 
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Serves: 26
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups of blanched almond flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup of palm oil (vegetable shortening)
  • 1½ cups of coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1½ cups of enjoy life chocolate chips (mini)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Combine almond flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl.
  3. Beat palm oil, coconut sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy, about 30 seconds. (If it fails to get creamy, use your hands to mix, which helps incorporate less air than a mixer)
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Gradually beat in flour mixture.
  6. Stir in chocolate chips.
  7. Use a small cookie dough scoop (that measures 2 tsp) to spoon dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet and freeze indiviudaly for 30 minutes.
  8. Then move chilled dough to refridgerator, and bake 6 at a time at 400 degrees.
  9. For 2 tsp of cookie dough bake 8-10 minutes.
  10. For double the amount of dough (4 tsp) stack chilled cookie dough and bake for 11-13 minutes.
  11. When removing cookies from oven, put the cookie sheet on a cooling rack for 2-3 minutes to set cookies before moving them to the cooling rack. This will prevent them from breaking when you move them.
  12. Let cookies cool on cooling rack, and enjoy.

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Nonni’s Bolognese Sauce

Nonni's Bolognese Sauce - Healing and Eating

Nonni’s Bolognese Sauce is dairy free and paleo friendly if you eat it with some spaghetti squash or zoodles. It was surprisingly easy to make, but the end result was fabulous. I will definitely be repeating this recipe. This recipe does call for a cup of red wine, but if your diet doesn’t include alcohol, you can easily omit it and it will still taste great.

If you make a ton of this, it has a similar thickness to chili, and should freeze just as easily. Not that you are likely to have leftovers, my whole family was going for seconds.

Nonni's Bolognese Sauce
 
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Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 cup of finely diced celery
  • 1 cup of finely diced carrots
  • 1 cup of finely diced red onion
  • ½ cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 lbs ground beef
  • 1 lb of sweet Italian pork sausage
  • 1 cup of red wine (Cabernet or Chianti)
  • 6 oz can of tomato paste
  • stir in one whole sprig of fresh rosemary
  • sea salt to taste (1/4 -1/2 tsp)
  • (optional) flat leaf parsley to garnish
Instructions
  1. Finely dice celery, carrots, and red onion.
  2. In a large pan, simmer veggies in olive oil until soft on low heat.
  3. Remove sausage casing if necessary and when vegggies are soft add meat to pan, and mix and break down ground meat until it all turns brown (becomes cooked). Use medium to medium high heat.
  4. Add red wine and turn heat to high until alcohol is evaporated.
  5. After it has evaporated, add tomato paste and sea salt to taste.
  6. Stir in a fresh sprig of rosemary and turn heat to low to let flavors develop for at least ten minutes.
  7. Serve over pasta, spaghetti squash, and/or zoodles and enjoy.

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Ten Kitchen Essentials for Thanksgiving

Ten Kitchen Essentials for ThanksgivingHere are some of my must-have gadgets and favorite kitchen essentials for entertaining this Thanksgiving.

1. Remote Roasting Thermometer aka Probe Thermometer – Although the name sounds dirty, they are amazing! The first time I made a turkey on my own, I used this to get perfectly done juicy turkey. It beeps and flashes when the meat is done, and you can literally watch the temperature going up without opening the oven.

2. Food Processor – Only two words are necessary – pie crust.

3. Prep Bowls –  If you think you have enough think again. I would also recommend ones that come with lids, and are pretty enough to use to serve people.

4. Blender – I love my Vitamix and I have used it for everything including flour-less gravy and mashed cauliflower. If you don’t want to splurge, you can easily find a budget blender or use an immersion blender to make all that pureed goodness.

5. Wine Cooler and/or Bottle Opener – How did I not know that red wine tastes better at the correct temperature? (Between 60 to 70 degrees) Maybe not an essential, but now that I’m spoiled, well, I think it’s worth it. A  corkscrew and/or bottle opener to get at the wine is definitely an essential. I like ones that have a foil cutter option.

6. Kosher Salt – For a dry salt brine for the turkey. This is my favorite way to prepare and flavor the turkey.

7. Roasting Pan – It will just make things easier. I know they can be pricey, but the cheap aluminum ones at the grocery store can break, and well, you want to break out the nice stuff for the holidays.

8. Gravy Strainer and Boat – If you make traditional gravy, you need a strainer. Plus you need a gravy boat to serve it in. Make sure you get a gravy boat that comes with a matching dish to put it on.

9. Large Sharp Knife or Carving Set – To cut that delicious bird.

10. Trivets Mats – You will have a lot of hot plates that you need to put them under.

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A Health and Wellness Blog