Tag Archives: clean eating

Seaweed Salad

I love going to sushi restaurants and ordering a bowl of seaweed salad as a side.  It’s so fresh and the salty-sweet flavors meld together so perfectly.  So naturally, as I have a habit of spending $7 on a very small bowl of the stuff, I decided to figure out how to make it on my own, at home.

Seaweed is one of the absolute best things for you to be eating.  It’s got Vitamins A, C and Calcium and Iodine in addition to an enormous number of antioxidants that can help to reduce inflammation (which in turn helps to prevent some chronic diseases).  It also contains a high amount of fiber and is very low in calories.  It’s also pretty delicious, so I highly recommend checking it out if you haven’t already had it.  I got my seaweed from an Asian supermarket and it was only about $3 for a pound of it dried (this goes a long way, I promise).  So it’s also really inexpensive.

So now I just need to figure out what to do with the seaweed.  These are a few recipes I found that I’m curious to try, but let me know if I’m missing out on a really good one!

Japanese Seaweed Salad from Food 52

Photo from Food52.com

Sesame Seaweed Salad from Weelicious

Photo from Weelicious.com

Seaweed Salad from Epicurious

Photo from Epicurious.com

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Lust v. Must: Weekend Detox

Tons of bloggers make lists of their “lust” items and their “must” items.  Well this weekend, I have a “must.”  I need to detox, both mentally and physically.  I’ve have an exhausting two weeks (which is probably fairly evident by the lack of posting on here) and I just need to clean out my system.  I don’t really have the luxury of going on a spa retreat, that would be a “lust” so here’s a few things I’m planning on doing this weekend to put my body back on track and get my mind ready for the upcoming week of midterms.

1. Drink lots of water.  With the cold weather, I have a really hard time drinking water and staying hydrated.  I’d so much rather have a hot tea or a coffee to battle the brisk cold, but I’ve been waking up really thirsty, and I feel like my brain and mood is suffering because of it.

Detox Water from Blogilates.com

This water looks delicious and fully of flavor, plus the cucumbers, oranges and lemons all help to eliminate toxins that have built up.  Blogilates explains more here about what each component of this detox water does to help clean out your system  The important thing to remember if you decide to make your own detox water is to buy the organic versions.  Pesticides and other chemicals build up on the peels of these fruits and vegetables and you’re trying to eliminate toxins, not put more in.

I’m planning to start each morning with two glasses of this water, before any coffee or breakfast, and to continue drinking it throughout the day.

2. Warm salads.  It’s cold, so I’ve been really drawn to comfort foods.  Asian stir-frys, although I’m making them at home, they’re still higher in sodium than I’d like and don’t leave me with a good, clean feelings.  Same goes for all of those substituted comfort foods like butternut squash mac and cheese or zucchini lasagna.  I just don’t end up with the same fresh feeling that I do have a beautiful, colorful fresh salad.

The issue I have though, is that it’s cold, so I don’t want salad.  The way I’m going to get around this is by making warm salads.  By using whole grains like quinoa, farro and bulgur as a base, you can throw just about any fruits, vegetables, legumes in that you want and end up with a super healthy, detoxing meal.

This Farro Salad with Winter Fruit Pistachios and Ginger from Foodandwine.com looks right up my alley!

3. Running and yoga.  Last weekend was gorgeous, at least by winter standards.  Sunny, slightly breezy and warm: the perfect conditions for outside exercise.  This week, after some unfortunate shin splints from trying to run in healed boots (high recommend never doing this) and some unfortunate weather (when is the snow going to stop!?) I just couldn’t get to the gym.  I’m planning to go for three four-mile runs this weekend, and do at least two sessions of at-home yoga to get myself back on track.

So, how do you detox when you’re just not feeling right?  I’d love to add more to my weekend detoxing!

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Healthy Brownies

Anyone that knows me knows how much I love cookies, brownies, cakes, and pretty much any other dessert.  Part of my New Year’s Resolution was to cut back on unhealthy things (like cookies, alcohol) and find other ways to satisfy those same cravings.  I know it’s important to not cut anything cold turkey, because they you just end up craving and binging, so I started doing some research on ways to make sweet foods in a healthier way.

Thanks to Jillian Michaels, and my amazing nutrition professor from senior year of college, I read all about baking alternatives for sugar, butter, and oil, the real calorie contributors to desserts.  Sugar can easily be replaced with honey or cane sugar, and butter and oil can be replaced with applesauce and avocado.  Jillian Michaels likes to use olive oil in place of vegetable oil, but I don’t like how that tastes, but you can try it and see what you think.  It’s also pretty easy to sneak in extra veggies to your desserts and to replace any white flour with whole wheat.  So here’s my recipe for a super-healthy brownie chock full of fiber, antioxidants and vitamins.

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Healthy Brownies (adapted from Jillian Michaels)

What you need:

  • olive oil cooking spray
  • 2/3 cup mild honey, such as clover or orange blossom
  • 1/3 cups natural, unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 cups of spinach or bananas, or shredded zucchini or carrots
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

What you do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Prepare an 8-inch pan by spraying it with olive oil.
  2. Place the honey and cocoa in a large glass measuring cup. Microwave until the honey is runny and just bubbling, 45 to 60 seconds.  Whisk together until well combined and let cool.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. .
  4. In a blender, combine the applesauce, oil, and spinach, banana, carrot or zucchini.  Blend until well incorporated.  Pour into a bowl and mix in the egg, and vanilla. Add the honey-cocoa mixture and whisk until smooth. Add the flour mixture to the liquid mixture and stir until well-incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  5. Bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let the brownies cool for about five minutes, then cut into 16 servings.
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