Archive for October, 2018

MAPLE-ROASTED DELICATA SQUASH WITH RED ONION

Delicata squash is my FAVORITE winter squash! It tastes a lot like butternut squash but much easier to prep because of its softer, delicate skin. This recipe is utterly delicious! Make it now while you can find delicata!

ingredients51258430_roasted-delicata-squash_1x1

3 medium Delicata squash (about 3 pounds), halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into ¼-inch thick slices

2 medium red onions, halved lengthwise and cut into ½-inch rings

5 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

4 fresh thyme sprigs

½ teaspoon red-pepper flakes

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons maple syrup

Kosher salt

directions

Arrange the racks in the upper and lower rungs in the oven and preheat the oven to 425°F degrees. Place the squash, red onion, garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and maple syrup, and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper; toss to coat.

Spread vegetables evenly onto two large, rimmed baking sheets. Bake the squash on the upper and lower racks of the oven, tossing, rotating, and switching the pan positions half way through cooking, until tender and browned, 25 to 30 minutes. Taste and season again with more salt and pepper, if desired.

(recipe found on http://www.epicurious.com)

 

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LESSONS FROM GEORGE

The other day, my HVAC serviceman, let’s call him George, came to check my system. George has been with me for several years so I feel comfortable with him. When I opened the door, I couldn’t believe my eyes….George lost A LOT of weight and looked amazing!  I asked him two things: 1. What happened?? (I’m always so curious as to how people get motivated to make a change.) and 2. How did you do it?

George got motivated when he went to the doctor. He was overweight, his liver enzymes were elevated and his triglycerides were high. He was developing  a non-alcoholic fatty liver. George was eating too many carbohydrates. The body breaks down carbs into glucose. Glucose gets utilized as our primary source of energy. The excess gets stored in muscle and fat cells as well as in the liver. If the storage in the liver is full, it will convert the excess sugar into fat called triglycerides. Because this is taxing on the liver, liver enzymes will rise. The doctor was not happy with him. He told George that if he didn’t change his ways, he would drop him as a patient. Ouch!

George’s eating pattern was also unhealthy. He didn’t eat breakfast and went the entire day without food. His stomach rumbled, and he felt hungry but he pushed 238B364000000578-2851604-image-35_1417086258740through it and waited until dinner.  As expected, by the time he sat down for dinner, he was famished. His dinner portions were, of course, gigantic. He could eat 6 pork chops, and 2-3 bowls of pasta. After dinner he went to sleep.

The doctor  wanted George to eat more frequently. George started eating breakfast. He forced himself to stop working sometime in the afternoon to eat. Since he was eating during the day, when it came time for dinner, he was no longer starving. He was, therefore,  able to eat smaller portions. This change made a huge impact and George lost weight. Forty pounds!

Most of us do not eat one meal a day but I know, from my clients, that there seems to be a fear of eating during the day—we somehow want to save up those calories for later. In doing so, so many of us are coming to that dinner table too hungry and we wind up sabotaging the healthy eating that we’ve done for most of the day. To boot, we are eating most of our calories in the evening where, after dinner, there is little to no activity.

My advice? If you are stuck in this habit try an experiment. Pick one day and change your eating pattern by eating more during the day. It WILL feel scary. However, if you get more calories in, during the day,  you will be surprised when it comes to that evening meal—you won’t need or want to eat as much. This change, might make all the difference for you, too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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THE BEST CHICKEN SOUP YOU’LL EVER EAT

Oh boy, did I LOVE this chicken soup!  You can tweak any soup recipe to make it your own. I used chicken with bones because I find that the bones add more flavor. I also cut the couscous in half and there was still plenty! You can make this gluten-free or vegetarian and it will still be delicious!

ingredientschickensoup-2

1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil

6 cloves of garlic, minced

1 yellow onion, diced

2 large carrots, thinly sliced

2 celery stalks, roughly chopped

1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger

1 tablespoon fresh grated turmeric (or 1 teaspoon ground turmeric)

6 cups low sodium chicken broth

1-pound boneless skinless chicken breast

1 teaspoon freshly chopped rosemary

1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme, stems removed

½ teaspoon salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 cup pearl or Israeli couscous

2/3 cup frozen peas

directions

Place a large Dutch oven or pot over medium high heat and add in oil. Once oil is hot, add in garlic, onion, carrots and celery; cook for a few minutes until onion becomes translucent.

Next add in grated ginger and grated turmeric. Sauté for 30 seconds to let the spices cook a bit, then add in chicken broth, chicken breast, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper.

Bring soup to a boil, then stir in couscous. You’ll want the chicken to be covered by the broth so make sure you stir them down to the bottom. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer uncovered for 20-30 minutes or until chicken is fully cooked.

Once chicken is cooked, remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a cutting board to shred with two forks. Add chicken back to pot then stir in frozen peas. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.

NOTES

To make vegetarian or vegan: Use vegetarian broth and sub 1 can of chickpeas for chicken.

To make the soup gluten free: You could use a gluten free couscous if you can find it, or try quinoa! The cook time will remain the same.

(Recipe found on http://www.ambitiouskitchen.com)

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RATATOUILLE WITH CHICKPEAS AND QUINOA

The recipe has everything: optimal nutrition, high in fiber, and utterly delicious! If you are not a fan of quinoa, substitute another grain such as couscous, brown rice or farro! Wonderful vegetarian dish or a great side!

ingredientssquare-1437601226-vscocam-photo-1-2

1 ½ c. quinoa, rinsed and drained

kosher salt

3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 small red onion, diced

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 small eggplant, cubed

2 small zucchini and summer squash, cubed

4 tomatoes, cored and chopped

1, 15-oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 c. freshly chopped basil, plus more for garnish

1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

Freshly ground black pepper

directions

Place quinoa in a medium pot with 3 cups water and a generous pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit, covered, 5 minutes, then fluff. (Season with more salt if desired.)

In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat, then cook onion and garlic until softened, about 5 minutes. Add eggplant and cook 5 minutes more, then add zucchini, summer squash, and tomatoes and cook until softened, 5 minutes. Add chickpeas and cook 5 minutes more.

Stir in basil and balsamic vinegar, and season with salt and pepper. Serve ratatouille over quinoa.

(Recipe found on delish.com)

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