Picnic Perfect Recipe: Beans have a very long shelf life whether dried or canned. They provide a nice creamy addition to most dishes such as salads or soups. Beans also stay fresh without refrigeration for several hours which is perfect for outdoor picnics or barbeques. For a perfect summertime bean recipe try Corn and Black Bean Salad with Basil-Lime Vinaigrette courtesy of the Food Network. The corn and mango chunks add the perfect sweetness to balance the acidity of the vinaigrette, while the two different types of beans provide all the carbs, protein and fiber you could ever want in a salad. Like always, don't be afraid to customize any recipe to suit your taste.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
The fruits of our labor. Once you understand and embrace carbs there is no need to fear when they pop up unexpectedly in some foods. Just because some fruits have a higher carb content does not mean you shouldn’t eat them. Fruits are a great way to start off your day or provide a boost with an afternoon pick-me-up. A great fruit recipe is a smoothie. You can add any combination of fruits you like, so don’t be afraid to customized and make it your own. My favorite smoothie is raspberry with orange juice. To make it I first add a large handful of raspberries to the blender, followed by about a container of vanilla low-fat yogurt. I blend until smooth then add a few splashes of orange juice to taste. Pulse the blender a few times to mix, pour contents over ice and enjoy.
Friday, May 27, 2011
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Friday, May 20, 2011
Fact: Many appetizers use carbs as a vehicle for other flavors. Crackers, breadsticks and other crispy chips often appear in appetizers that don’t use a skewer. In all cultures, there is some form of carbs that are used to complement dips and toppings. In Mediterranean cuisine we see pitas often paired with hummus or feta cheese. In
, bruschetta provides the perfect amuse-bouche (or single, bite-sized hors d'œuvre) for multiple foods. A staple in Mexican food is tortilla chips and salsa. Basically, there is no need to avoid the crispy vehicles because they are delicious and much more useful than a skewer. Italy
What to avoid: Most people follow diets that tell them to eliminate or limit their carbohydrates, but sometimes the appetizers that lack carbs are the worst for you. For example, bacon wrapped scallops, coconut shrimp and BBQ glazed wings are all full of fat, which is much worse that consuming carbs. Although these are delicious and can be eaten in moderation, sometime pita chips and hummus is a better alternative. It’s important that you are aware of what you are consuming, being careful not to stereotype some appetizers due to their utilization of carbs.
I’m throwing a party... HELP! Being of Italian origin, carbs are a major part of almost every meal, even party appetizers. There is no need to feel overwhelmed by throwing a party and making finger foods. Everyone understands that appetizers are only there to hold you over until the main event, but that doesn’t mean they need to be store bought. I recommend making a bruschetta bar with multiple toppings. For the easy and delicious party appetizer recipe see the instructions below.
Bruschetta: (serves 4)
Purchase a whole wheat loaf of Italian bread.
Turn on the oven to broil.
Cut the bread ¼ inch slices on a diagonal.
Lay the slices on a baking sheet and brush them with olive oil and sprinkle them with garlic powder and kosher salt.
Place them in the oven. (Leave the oven light on and watch the slices because they burn very quickly)
Remove from the oven when they are golden brown and crispy (to make sure they can hold the juicy tomato mixture). Let them cool and place them in a napkin lined basket.
Tomato and Basil Salad (Pomodoro) Topping:
1 pound ripe plum tomatoes
5 leaves fresh basil
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
1/2 cup of olive oil
Cube tomatoes and place in a serving bowl.
Chop garlic and pan sauté until golden.
Add garlic, salt, pepper, red onion, basil, and vinegar to tomatoes. Mix well. Next, add extra virgin olive oil. Toss again. Let sit so all flavors mix well.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Fact: Some desserts can use up to a pound of butter or shortening. These are deadly desserts for any dieter. However, just because we are watching our weight does not mean we can’t treat ourselves every now and again. Dessert makes us feel like we are rewarding ourselves and satisfying our sweet tooth. Besides, who doesn’t get chocolate cravings that you just can’t shake? There is no need to deter the cravings, but instead, learn how to satisfy them in the right way.
Restaurant Guide to Desserts: Eating out is hard enough, but once everyone at the table starts ordering desserts, I’m already planning my gym schedule for the week. We need to be able to take the rules we have established with our other meals and apply them to desserts. There are some important things to remember.
1. Sharing is caring: When you are craving something sweet at the end of a meal, share with your friends and loved ones. It cuts the calories in half, while still allowing you to taste the sweetness.
2. Avoid pastry dough: The dough itself is 90% butter, so you’re turning something that’s already a treat into something even worse.
3. Try getting dessert someplace other than the restaurant: Sometimes you have a craving that will pass if you let yourself forget about it. Try getting dessert at another location, because your craving may subside.
These tips are great way to indulge without being overindulgent. I hope the next time you are out to eat and you find yourself in this situation, you can use these suggestions to make an educated dessert decision.
Can I eat dessert at home too? Dessert doesn’t have to be something you only get on special occasions. Treat yourself often (in a smart way) and you won’t feel like you’re missing a thing. For a great recipe to satisfy your cravings, try Devil’s Food Cupcakes courtesy of the Food Network. To make them even moister, I suggest adding apple sauce. Don’t be afraid to alter recipes to suit your taste!
Friday, May 13, 2011
Fact: Dinner carbs should be half the amount of protein and vegetables you are eating. Many people make the mistake of solely eating carbs during dinner, but it’s proven that a balanced meal provides the most nutrients and energy for consumers. Think about your plate cut in threes. The carb section should be the smallest, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t exist. Even when you are craving pasta, consider that you should be eating it with vegetables and proteins to lessen the amount of carbs per serving.
So what are some good dinner carbs? Brown Rice, Baked Sweet potatoes and whole wheat pastas are all great ways to get your carbs without consuming simple carbs. Simple carbs should be limited because of their excess sugar. They are normally sweeter tasting to tongue receptors and come in many forms like white potatoes and rice. We should be focusing on complex carbs. These are generally found in grains, vegetables and legumes. Surprising, there are many common vegetables that are high in carbohydrates. Some are peas, lentils, carrots, corn and so many more. When choosing your dinner carbs, focus on the complex.
I’m tired of the same boring sides! With summer right around the corner, everyone will be grilling and lounging by the pool, but it’s important to not forget about carbs. Instead of loading up on hamburger buns and potato salad, try making some delicious sides that offer the needed carbs and hold the mayo. A classic recipe in my house for barbeques is Sesame Noodles. The Asian flare pairs beautifully with a soy-ginger glazed grilled flank steak or chicken breast. Enjoy!
List of ingredients:
1 lb thin Whole Wheat Spaghetti
6 Cloves of Garlic
2 Tablespoons crystallized Ginger
2 tablespoons sesame oil
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
6 tablespoons Rice vinegar
6 tablespoon Soy Sauce
1 tablespoon Chinese hot oil
3 tablespoons of Sugar
6 Scallions (diced)
Must make the day before you plan to serve!
Combine oils in a sauce pan. Add garlic and ginger until soft, but do not brown.
Add rice vinegar, soy sauce, hot oil, and sugar and bring them all to a boil.
Once al dente, drain spaghetti and let it cool.
Mix sauce into noodles and refrigerate overnight.
Before serving toss noodles with diced scallions and generously sprinkle with dried cilantro. Serve room temperature.