Sunday, November 25, 2012

Comfort Food for a Cold Day

Sweet kabocha squash, the one that looks like a green pumpkin and is deep orange once you cut into it, is perfectly paired with a little onion and quinoa all boiled together.  A pinch of sea salt to bring out the sweet flavors more fully and a drizzle of flax oil or some earth balance in the bowl when your done.  It's creamy, rich and perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  Make a lot and you can add some flour, an egg, and fry up as pancakes the next day (or next meal), with a little side salad. 

Better for your waistline than ice cream, this is comfort food you can eat a lot of.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Gift Ideas

One thing you will notice with healthy baked goods - They are best the day you make them.  while I loved that a guy I dated enjoyed some lemon squares I baked, I was extremely embarrassed he saved them, and shared them with his best girlfriend.  (Don't worry gals - didn't date him long...I can hear your thoughts from hear about that sentence.) She said how good they were, but I knew they couldn't have possibly been good sitting out or in a fridge for several days.  With no cane sugar (a preservative) and the freshest organic ingredients, cookies can become like cardboard and muffins can get hard. 

While it's fun to give healthy treats as a gift.  (I've done it plenty) Consider who you are giving them too and what might be best.  Here are a few ideas to go with a single easily consumed that day treat.

Homemade candy will not go bad like baked goods so play with chocolate or make up your own mints, brittles and peanut butter cups with healthy recipes.  (yes there are some in my books)

Gift cards and a single cookie. Itunes to Bergdoff's, anyone can appreciate a gift card.
A mug with some beautiful tea.  (There are some terrific ones at Harney & Sons in Soho - have you tried their organic Rooibos?)
Yoga, dance, golf, even shooting ranges can sell you a small package of classes or sessions.  Got a Hunger Games fan? Give her some time using her bow or see if you can get tickets now for the next renaissance faire (you can find your own local faire- here in NY you can purchase for next August... )

If you must bake a pie, cookies, brownies, or pumpkin muffins.  Give some instructions to freeze right away to keep freshness around longer. Be sure to make some extra for yourself too.

Friday, November 23, 2012

BF 30% off Books

DELIRITAS is the code to use.  Get 30% off all books at

My personal favorite is 
The Best Recipes, Stories and Tips from the newsletter archives because you get a cookbooks worth of some terrific recipes as well as inspiring tips and stories.
  We all know how much I love breakfast foods.  Pancakes for dinner anyone?                                                Here are just some of the recipes:
Pumpkin Muffins                                11

Blueberry Banana Crumble                 13

Scones                                                 14
Pancakes Like You Remember!          15
Heart Healthy Waffles                        16
Great Granola                                      17
Fruit Compote                                     18
Cinnamon Raisin Mochi                    
with Tofu “cream cheese”                  19
Breakfast Mochi Melt                         20
Chickpea crêpes with                          
tofu cheese and jam                             21
Blueberry Breakfast Millet loaf          23
Mochi Waffles                                    24
Breakfast Polenta with
Apple Compote                                  25
Overnight Oats                                   26

Toasted Amaranth                              27

Teff Cereal                                          28

Sticky Rice with Aduki Beans            29

Rice Pudding                                       30
Bowl Full of Breakfast                       31
Potato Pancakes                                  32
Tofu Sour Cream                                33
Cauliflower "Sour Cream"                  34       
Scrambled Tofu                                   35

Maybe you just need a useful little journal to track your progress.  You know sometimes that is the easiest and fastest way to creating a new habit.  Track it.  It gets you to do it and rewards you for your effort by marking it down.    Is a simple little journal to do just that.
and use the code 
DELIRITAS to get Your 30% savings!  Have fun, be well and enjoy everyday!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Is There A Whole Lot A Cooking Going On? - Don't Stress

Holidays bring out enough stress.  The recipes I've shared the last few days for Thanksgiving can certainly be used for other holidays or for anytime.  The nice thing is they are all fairly simple to do and can be done ahead of time, reheated or eaten cool, so don't stress. 

Sometimes there is a feeling of trying so hard to do it all, and do it all right.  Get the food perfect, buy gifts or decorations, and still get the laundry done or the work finished.  It can be easy to forget that it's about having fun and sharing something with those you love.  One of my favorite Thanksgivings was with friends when we went out for Thai food and saw movie.  Nothing traditional but no one had to cook and everyone had fun. 

If you are alone and feeling a tad blue about it all.  Maybe make something special.  (Heck, last year I literally ate pumpkin pie all week since that's my favorite part of the November meal, I made one for myself.) Go to a movie, schedule a massage or a facial or take a yoga class, buy yourself a gift... Whatever you do, don't try to ignore your feelings, but do try to give yourself something, and enjoy the day.

Then make great tasting fast and easy recipes every day, so that you look terrific and feel great too.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Stunning Starters

Start Your Holiday meal with a Starter to Set the Stage


Celery Root Soup

1 large celery root with hard outer peel removed and chopped
1 onion, sliced
Toasted sesame oil
White miso paste
Good quality water

If you prefer for Thanksgiving use butternut squash in place of the celery root or add some in along with it.  Celery Root gives a wonderful elegant flavor.  Both are a nice creamy soup.

Add a small amount of the oil to a saucepan over medium heat and sauté the onion for several minutes.  Add the Celery root and then water to cover by at least one inch.
Bring to a boil and then simmer on low heat with a lid on for 15-20 minutes until the vegetables are soft.  Transfer to a blender and blend with miso to taste.  (Approx. 1 tsp. miso paste per cup of soup)  Garnish with fresh parsley.

Butternut Squash Soup
Pick the darkest looking squash you can find so that when you cut into it the color is deep orange.  That is when they are the sweetest.  For even more filling holiday flare - add chestnuts.

1 large red onion, sliced
1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cut into chunks with seeds removed
1 Tablespoon dried basil (optional)
1-3 Tablespoons olive oil
White miso paste
Good water
Nutmeg (optional)

In a good sized pot, sauté the onion for several minutes in the olive oil and add the basil.
Add the squash and enough water to cover the vegetables with approximately 1 tsp. Sea salt.  Simmer for 15 minutes.  Process in a food processor or blender into a smooth creamy soup.
Adjust the salt/miso to taste and garnish with nutmeg

A fun appetizer can be made with your own easy tofu cheese too.  Simple slice veggies, crackers or toasts and top or get fancier by baking zucchini and hollowing out a boat.  Mix the tofu cheese with blanched vegetables like carrots and peas and fill the boats.

Tofu Cheese

1 block tofu any size
light barley miso(or any miso really)

Simply plaster the miso all around the tofu and leave uncovered in the refrigerator for 3 days (sitting on a plate is good idea).  Scrape off the miso and you now have tofu cheese.  Really it works.



Monday, November 19, 2012

Did you want some easy Biscuits and Gravy? Check out these recipes

(for those gluten free folks - please try any flour of your choosing, these recipes are pretty forgiving.  Wheat will get the product like you remember but that doesn't mean don't experiment...)
Simple Sage Gravy

2-3 Tablespoons oil
1/3 C. Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
2 C. water or stock
1-2 Tablespoons Shoyu (soy sauce) (plus 1 teaspoon sea salt instead of on of the Tablespoons Shoyu)
1 – 2 teaspoons sage

Simply heat the oil over med. to low heat and add the flour creating a thick paste.  Add water or stock by small increments stirring constantly.  You may use a wire whisk if that makes it easier for you to avoid lumps.  Stir in the remaining ingredients.  Keep stirring until desired consistency is reached.  Stir in fresh minced parsley if desired towards end. 

Another version is to simply dilute 1/2 Cup sunflower butter with water, stir over medium heat adding the shoyu and sage.



Baking Powder Biscuits

2 cups unbleached white flour (or 1 1/2 C. White and 1/2 C. pastry flour)
4 teaspoons non-aluminum Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. sea salt
6 tablespoons oil (safflower, olive or other)
2/3 cup plain soy milk (about)

Pre-heat oven to 450°
Mix the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
Stir in the oil with a fork.  The dough will be like pebbles.
Add the soymilk to make a soft dough.
Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and knead gently for 30 seconds. Roll out to 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch thickness.
Cut into rounds of desired size and place on greased baking pan
Or cookie sheet with parchment paper on top.
Bake 12-15 minutes.

Don't forget the stuffing and sweet potatoes

Bread Dressing

1 loaf stale cubed bread (Pacific Bakery’s Kamut White is a good one and unyeasted)
1 1/4 Cups Celery Chopped
3/4 Cup Onion Chopped
1 Cup broth (use the “chicken” style broth you can find in natural food stores or your own veggie broth)
1 egg or 1 Tablespoon kudzu dissolved in a small amount of water
Dash of salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350°.
Sauté the Celery and Onion in a Tablespoon or so of oil. Mix all ingredients together and transfer to a baking dish with a lid.  Bake for 20-60 minutes depending on your oven and how dark you like the outside of your dressing.

Baked Yams

I love a simple baked yam especially at Thanksgiving.  Just take a whole yam and use knife to make a slit in the top.  Heat oven to 350°.  You may put them in a baking dish or directly in the oven.  They do ooze some juice so you might want something under them to catch any drips…  Bake until soft.  45 minutes to 1 hour.  Leftover yams can be sliced and fried the next day…

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes - Pumpkin Pie and Cranberry Sauce (sans sugar too)

Pumpkin Pie


3/4 C. unbleached white flour
3/4 C. whole wheat pastry flour
1/8 tsp. Sea salt
1/4 C. safflower oil
1/4 C. brown rice syrup

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Mix the flours and salt in a mixing bowl and then add the oil using a fork to mix until you have beads of dough.  Add the rice syrup and mix using your hand just until mixed.  Please do not over mix the dough.  Gather the dough and form into a ball.  You may refrigerate to make it easier to roll out.   Roll out thin between pieces of wax paper.  Peel off the top layer of wax paper and flip it into a pie plate.  Trim the excess with your hands and save the dough to make cut outs.  Using a fork put a few pricks in the bottom of the crust.  Flute the edges of the crust with your fingers or make tracks with the fork.

Roll the crust trimmings into a ball and then roll out just like the pie crust.  This time use a small heart or star shaped cookie cutter to make small crust cut outs.  Transfer to a baking sheet with a parchment paper on it.  Keep rolling up excess dough to form a ball and then roll out in the same manner to keep making cut-outs until all the dough is used.  You will get about 21 small cutouts. Bake for 15-20 minutes until just golden brown.


2 cups Pumpkin puree or 1 can of organic pumpkin
3/4 lb. Tofu
1 tsp. Salt
1 1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Ginger
1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
3/4 C. Brown Rice Syrup
1/4 plus 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/3 C. light vegetable oil

Blend all filling ingredients in a blender until smooth and creamy.  Pour into unbaked pie shell and bake for 1 hour. (Note: you may need foil so as not to burn the outside crust, just apply to crust about ½ way through cooking or start with foil and take off after 30 minutes.)  Top with the cookie cutouts if desired.  Let cool and chill in refrigerator.  Use Tofu whip topping to decorate.

Tofu “Whip” Topping

1 lb. Tofu
1/2 C. maple syrup
1/8 tsp. Seas salt
1/2 tsp. Vanilla extract
Lemon juice

Put the tofu in a saucepan with a little water and simmer with a lid on for 5-10 minutes.  (This makes the tofu more digestible and I think gives the topping a better flavor)  Take out the tofu and put in the blender with the other ingredients.  I use just a squeeze of lemon and you may wish more or none at all. Blend until smooth.  Chill well.

Cranberry Sauce

1 1/2 lbs. Fresh cranberries, rinsed
1 cup sweetener.  ( use all maple syrup or some maple and some rice syrup)
Pinch of sea salt
Zest of one orange (optional)

Simply stir the cranberries and salt over low heat for approx. 30 minutes.  The cranberries will soften and the liquid will form a syrup.  Add the sweetener and orange zest and keep stirring until desired consistency is achieved.  Cool completely and then chill before serving.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thanksgiving Recipes For All - macrobiotic, gluten free, vegan, vegetarian

I will post a couple of recipes until we get the whole meal covered.  I love these recipes.  Really I should think of them all through the year and not just for Thanksgiving.  Especially this Kale salad and Tempeh recipe...

Tempeh “Turkey”

The gravy in this recipe is so wonderful you can use it with beans or top millet mash… I learned it from a wonderful whole foods cook named Michelle Plum.

1 package Tempeh cut into triangles
1 Cup Safflower oil for frying
1-2 Cups button mushrooms
1 onion diced
2-3 Cups water
2 Tablespoons miso (country barley is a good one)
1 Tablespoon prepared mustard
1/2 tsp. Sage
1/4 tsp. Rosemary
1/2 tsp. Thyme
1/2 tsp. Marjoram
2 Tablespoons Kudzu

Heat the oil in a heavy fry pan and fry the Tempeh until golden brown. Drain on brown paper bags.  Place the fried tempeh, mushrooms and onions in a saucepan.  Mix the other gravy ingredients, except the kudzu, and pour over the Tempeh and veggies.  Bring to a boil and then lower the heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes.  Dissolve the Kudzu in a small amount of cool water and then Stir into the Tempeh mixture until sauce thickens.  Serve hot.

Holiday Salad

This beautiful kale and beet salad can be for anytime.  It just looks like Christmas.

Kale rinsed and chopped
Beets, peeled and boiled

To boil the beets I like to slice them into wedges and then simmer in 1/2 inch of water for about 20 minutes until soft and the water has all simmered away.  I peel them ahead of time or you can simply take the peel off after they are cooked.

Water fry the kale in a small amount of water with a few grains of sea salt in a fry pan for 2-3 minutes.  Stirring to make sure all the kale turns dark bright green.

Assemble the salad by placing some of the cooked kale on a salad plate with several beet wedges on top and then add some Creamy Tofu Dressing.

Creamy Tofu Dressing:

1/2 cake of Trader Joe’s organic firm tofu, boiled or steamed for 5 minutes
(approx. 8oz of tofu)
4 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 tsp. Sea salt
2 tsp. Maple syrup
2 Tbsp. Apple cider vinegar
1 clove garlic pressed or a little granulated garlic
2 tsp. red onion, chopped fine
a little white pepper

Mix all the dressing ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth and creamy.  You might like to add water for a thinner dressing.  Add herbs and spices of your choosing to create different dressings.