RECIPE: Buckwheat Noodle Salad

SERVES: ~ 10-12

PREP TIME: 10 min

__________________

This is a great salad to take to a gathering or to keep in the fridge and nibble on all week.  It’s gluten-free and flavor-full. And it may be the easiest thing I’ve made in quite a while.

Trader Joe’s sells bags of sun-dried tomatoes, but I have to get the Annie’s dressing and soba noodles (buckwheat noodles) at another grocery store.  So hopefully you have a store that carries all of the ingredients (with no additives, of course!).

photo 1Chop up 1/2 – 1 cup of sun-dried tomatoesphoto 2While you boil 1 package (3 sleeves) of buckwheat noodles (also called soba noodles, found in Asian section of most grocery stores; try to get the ones without added wheat) and 1 package of frozen edamame (anywhere from 8-16 ounce bag is fine) photo 3

In a large bowl combine buckwheat noodles, edemame, an entire jar of Annie’s Asian Sesame dressing, and sea salt and ground pepper to taste.  After noodles cool, add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes and stir.photo 4You now have a gorgeous and delicious dish to share!

 

RANT: Fake Food and Sneaky Ingredients

OK, it’s been a long time since I Ranted.

But This really ticks me off.  When companies sell a “food”, for example sunflower seeds, the consumer should expect that they are in fact buying…..SUNFLOWER SEEDS.  Not some chemicalized version of a sunflower seed.  Just like if you buy Mayonnaise, it shouldn’t have EDTA in it, same with Triscuits, or anything else out there.

I used to pick an item up and look at its fat content.  If it was high I was supposed to avoid it.

Then I was taught to look at the carbohydrate count. If there were too many carbs or sugars, I was taught it would make me fat.

I now know, what really matters, in fact the ONLY thing that matters when you buy a food, is that you look at THE INGREDIENT LIST!

It’s what’s IN the food that matters!

Additives, fillers, preservatives, flavor enhancers are added to almost everything!  And they are known to cause obesity, diabetes, behavioral problems, and cancer.

So what are our stores filled with them?

See the two examples below:

The Trades Joes Sunflower seeds’ ingredients: Sunflower Seeds, Sunflower oil, and Salt (All reasonable)

The Harris Teeter Sunflower seeds’ ingredients: Sunflower Seeds, Salt, CONRNSTARCH, CORN SYRUP SOLIDS , HYDROLIZED SOY PROTEIN (????)

Are these added ingredients necessary?

 

sunflower seedsThe above example isn’t even near the worst.  There are sauces with known carcinogens and crackers with cancer causing agents sprayed in the bag to keep them “fresh”.  How Fresh is Cancer!?!

So please people, LOOK AT THE INGREDIENTS! Know what you are eating! If you don’t recognize it, can’t pronounce it, or it has numbers or all caps letters in the ingredient list (BHT, EDTA, Yellow 5, etc) Don’t Eat it!

 

Pledge to yourself, your health and your family’s health, to EAT ONLY REAL FOOD!

 

RECIPE: Walnut Clusters

I used to hit the McDonalds drive thru for a large McFlurry when I had a hankering for something sweet.  Thankfully now that I actually care about the quality of food I eat, I have a different approach.  Don’t get me wrong, I still have to feed the ole’ sweet tooth, so I’ve gotten in the habit of just whipping up desserts from the healthy, all-natural foods I keep at home.
I whipped these up when we had friends over for a cookout and the girls were emailing me for a recipe.  As usual, I hadn’t measured anything out, I just eyeball these concoctions; so adjust as your see fit!
walnut cluster
In a medium-sized bowl combine:
~1/2 cup almond butter
handful of walnuts
3 shakes of cinnamon
pinch of sea salt and
~1-2 Tbsp honey
Stir up and freeze on wax paper for 15 minutes, or keep ’em in the freezer (if they don’t get eaten!)
I made a 2nd batch dipped in melted dark chocolate, which was an even bigger hit. Oh yeah!!!!

RECIPE: Tomato and Basil Salad

image

I used to tear up Caprese salads, any time I was at an Italian restaurant. I would kick off my carb-laden meal with a tower of thick, creamy buffalo mozzarella slices and tomatoes.  Because the Caprese salad was listed under the “salad” section of the menu, I though I was being super healthy to precede my fat-filled fettuccini alfredo dish (which by the way is not on a single menu in Italy!)  with a”salad” and  being cheese’s biggest fan, this was a “win-win’ for me!

Thankfully, I now know we have a bit of a “portion problem” in America, and no one needs to eat a 1/2 pound of mozzarella in a single sitting, even if it’s flanked with tomatoes and basil leaves….especially if that’s not to be the main course!

So skip the mozzarella, and soak up the high quality olive oil and basalmic vinegar with fresh basil and tomatoes. It is truly delicious sans fromaggio!

That way there’s room for a little gelato 😉

 

Slice one large, ripe, organic, heirloom tomato

atop fresh basil leaves

a dash of sea salt

drizzle with olive oil and basalmic vinegar

Perfecto!

 

This dish is so beautiful, you should strut it around your block parties and BarBQs!

RECIPE: Super Duper Simple Summer Fruit Salad

image

In a large bowl you can leave in your fridge all week combine:

1 cup cut organic strawberries

1 cup organic grapes

1/2 cup organic raspberries

1/2 cup organic blueberries

1 peeled and sliced organic peach, nectarine or cantaloupe (you pick, what’s in season, on sale or in the fruit bowl—I love cantaloupe, but it can be a pain to cut, huh?/)

Having this prepped in your fridge makes it easy to snack healthfully–maybe add real greek yogurt and/or granola and honey. Or throw in a blender and make a smoothie.  Take this dish to backyard BarBQs as a healthy alternative. It’s your go to fruit salad, it’s your summer, so make it delicious!