Tag Archives: healthy

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Wanted to share something positive today, as it has been somewhat of a somber week. Music is the great uniter, and I know the right tune can make my mood do a quick 180. This playlist was made in Bali, adding as our adventure went along. The vibe is surf-y, mellow, mid tempo songs, with worldwide influence. Please enjoy …and remember to spread the positive vibes ❤

Alina Baraz-Fantasy

Bonobo-Antenna

Shamanic Dub-Ayahuasca

Birdy-Skinny Love

Crayon-Give You Up (Darius Remix)

Prince Lincoln-Bell Rock

Kungs-Don’t You Know

Dune-Blue Window

Fania All Stars-Peanuts

Overjoy-Like a Wave

Stick Figure-Fire On the Horizon

Los Cafres-Barrilete

Listen Here

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Copper French Press here

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Who needs an excuse to make margaritas?! I’ve never had any trouble coming up with one, but if you really need a reason, today is Cinco de Mayo! I started making these a few years back and they were a hit with mis amigas, and are SO easy, so I decided to share the love here. They key is gauging the heat level of when infusing the tequila…I like it HOT, so keep all the seeds, and let it sit for about 24 hrs. The fun part of these is the straining method…a French press! The process of French pressing your coffee is super fun and we decided to apply that to another fun beverage…tequila. Enjoy these responsibly and ¡Salud!

 

Ingredients:

-Silver Tequila (we used Espolon)
-7 Cups Grapefruit Juice
-5 Large Jalapeños
-5 Limes (reserve one for garnish)
-1/3 Cup Honey
-1/3 Cup Filtered Water
-Margarita Salt

*Note: This process takes a couple of days…So plan your party accordingly!

 

Instructions:

To infuse the tequila: Wash and slice jalapeños, place half in French press. Pour half of the tequila over the jalapeños and cover with saran wrap, refrigerate remaining jalapeños. Leave mixture in French press on counter for at least 8 hours per batch…just remember the longer you let it set, the hotter it will get! When you are ready to strain tequila, place lid on French press and press down just like you would with coffee. Pour off tequila and place in freezer while you make the 2nd batch (we just used the original tequila bottle for storage).

To make the margaritas: Heat honey with water in a small sauce pot to create a simple syrup. Let cool. In a pitcher combine grapefruit juice, 2 1/2 cups of the tequila, and the juice of four limes. Stir together. Add in simple syrup and ice. Salt the rims of your favorite glasses and serve immediately.

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These gooey triple chocolate brownie-like cookies are sure to satisfy any chocolate lovers craving! They have sort of a merengue-like consistency outside, and a creamy chocolate center inside. Containing only seven ingredients total, they are super simple to make, and are healthy too (about as healthy as a cookie can get). These are flourless (so gluten-free), and contain cacao nibs which add an extra chocolate crunch when you bite. The recipe is adapted from Bon Appetit, in which I substituted Cacao powder for cocoa, Pink Himalayan Salt for regular, and they came out perfectly. Bake these for your lover for Valentine’s Day and keep them coming back for more…

Ingredients:

-3 cups gluten-free powdered sugar
-¾ cup Cacao Powder
-1 teaspoon Himalayan Pink Salt
-2 large egg whites
-1 large egg
-4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
-3 tablespoons cacao nibs

Instructions
Place racks in lower and upper thirds of oven; preheat to 350°. Whisk powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and salt in a large bowl, then whisk in egg whites and egg; fold in chocolate and cacao nibs. Spoon batter by the tablespoonful onto 2 parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing 2” apart.
Bake, rotating sheets once, until cookies are puffed, cracked, and set just around the edges, 14–16 minutes.
Transfer baking sheets to wire racks and let cookies cool on pan (they’ll firm up).
***Do Ahead:
Cookies can be baked 3 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

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Anti-Allergen Smoothie Bowl

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I got really into eating Acai bowls in college where our favorite smoothie place near campus would blend up healthy combinations and top with hemp granola and honey. They weren’t cheap, usually coming in around $9 each, but I somehow managed to have one almost every day. I still love smoothie bowls, and there are many places in LA that you can find them, but I tend to stick to just making my own now. There are infinite possibilities and combinations, and don’t necessarily have to contain Acai. This bowl doesn’t, and is a basic strawberry/pineapple/mixed berry. I love switching up the toppings as well. Bee pollen is a go-to, and I’ve also been using dark chocolate covered cacao nibs lately too (YUM). The bee pollen is floral in flavor, high in protein, and acts as an amazing anti-allergen superfood. How you ask? Just imagine bees buzzing from flower to flower, collecting pollen that they bring back to the hive to create granules. An allergy happens when your body develops an immune response to an allergen, in turn creating antibodies. Antibodies cause cells to release histamine which is the cause of allergy symptoms. When you ingest these granules of different flowers pollen, they act as an anti-histamine, and a natural anti-allergen! NATURE IS AWESOME. The trick is to buy LOCAL be pollen, where bees have been pollenating your regional flora.

Smoothie Ingredients:

(Frozen)
-Strawberries
-Pineapple
-Mixed Berries

-Coconut Milk
-Bee Pollen
-Hemp Granola
-Honey
-Chocolate Covered Cacao Nibs

Blend 1/2 cup each of frozen fruit, and 1//2 cup coconut milk until smooth. Pour into a bowl, top with topping and serve! Extra portions can be kept in small mason jars and even frozen for easy, ready made smoothies to take on the go.

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Recipe from Plenty More by Yotam Ottolenghi

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This was the first recipe we made from Plenty More, the highly anticipated sequel to Ottolengi’s Plenty. Filled with vibrant vegetable centered dishes that are both simple and healthy, each and every page of the book is inspiring and mouth watering. We had difficulty choosing what would be the first attempt, and slowly paged through the whole book (save for the sweets section at the end) and bookmarked more than a few pages, deciding on this recipe featuring bright grape and cherry tomatoes highlighted by roasted lemon. I was intrigued to say the least, never having roasted lemons except with a whole roasted chicken, but Ottolenghi’s argument made sense, “Seek out the sweetest tomatoes you can find for this salad in order to balance the bitterness of the lemon.” He is the authority on these things, so it was settled. Following the recipe, but adding more mint and parsley than what is originally called for, we sliced, chopped, squeezed our way to an artful salad ripe with sweetness and tang. We brought the salad to our friends Caitlin and Dan’s house and everyone seemed to enjoy it, as we fittingly brunched outside under their lemon tree. After sitting for a bit, the tomatoes became macerated in their own juices, forming almost a chutney that could be paired well with chicken, or added to a grain bowl for color and acidity.

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Juice Cleanse Recap

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 Moon Juice | Moon Milk | Moon Juice Pantry | Zenbunni Chocolate

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Ok so it’s been two days since we finished “the cleanse,” and I’m feeling pretty damn good. I feel LIGHT. I’m energized. I feel like I’ve completed a goal, so if nothing else it’s boosted my self-confidence lol. But really, my body has had five days to reset itself, and it shows, but before we get down to results, I’ll give you the rundown of each day. Day one was well, not amazing. On the first day you’re coming to terms with the fact that you wont be eating for the next five days, so it’s really the most mental day. You’re coming down off the holidays, which is like the heroin of drugs am I right? You have to switch off your brain a little, stop looking in the fridge, and god forbid read the new issue of Bon Appetit. It’s time to be quiet. Read, drink tea, sit in the sun, contemplate, and internalize WHY you are really doing this. It’s going to help your body, it’s going to reset your metabolism, and it’s the mecca of willpower tests. Day two rolls around..Alright! We made it through one day, four more to go. This day isn’t fun. It’s hard. You might have a headache (which is totally normal), you may feel cold, and yes, you’re hungry, but you make it through. Day two and three are definitely the hardest. It’s day three…you are HANGRY. All of your wildest inner fat child cravings emerge. Pasta, pizza, something with a creamy dressing, oh maybe some sugar (remember this cleanse is basically sugar-free), and COFFEE. Give me my coffee. I always crave coffee the most on a cleanse. Let me tell you, if you can make it through three days of any cleanse, you can make it to 10 on the master-cleanse. THE FIRST THREE DAYS SUCK. But you know what? It’s all down hill from there. Day four-alright! You can do this. Feeling pretty good that you’re over the hump. Only today and tomorrow. Headache is gone, and your mind is clearing from the fog. Day five…success! So the results: I feel no bloat. Like I said, I feel lighter, I haven’t weighed myself, but everything feels just a little looser. Under eye circles, where have they gone?? Skin looks preeeeety good! One thing that was new for me on this cleanse was my nails. My nails have no more transparent spots where the white begans. They are white and feel STRONG. This must have been from all the chard and kale we drank. 20 lbs of veggies and nuts a day…that adds up to a total of 100 lbs for the entire cleanse. No wonder I’m feeling like super woman. SO,  now that its over, we’ve been really successful in not gorging ourselves on whatever we were dreaming about mid-cleanse. We made a huge pot of veggie soup, and have lots of things  to snack on around the house (organic peanut butter, nuts, rice cakes, apples). We are continuing the “dry-January” thing as well, so no wine here. I also really advocate for drinking a ton of tea. Green, Kukicha (really savory and satisfying), and Yogi Detox tea are some of my faves. I usually drink them without any added sweetener, but sometimes at night if Im craving dessert, I’ll add honey and coconut creamer. I have to say, I enjoyed Moon Juice’s green cleanse regimen, and I’ve loved Moon Juice since we moved to Venice. They have so many other juices, snacks, and pantry items that keep me coming back for more. I definitely recommend this to anyone, and if you aren’t in LA, then create your own juice cleanse regimen, its the best 5 days you can give your body.

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Juice Cleanse (& a new category!)

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First Day of Our Green Juice Cleanse from Moon Juice

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So we decided to jump on the cleanse bandwagon this January. Why? First, living in LA now, there are literally hundreds of juiceries that do the work for you. It can be daunting to put together a wholesome cleanse program yourself, and after doing my research, I felt that the Juicery I go to most (Moon Juice-Venice location) was right on par with what I had in mind. They serve CCOF certified organic, cold pressed, medicinal juice each day which “keeps your metabolism going, your organs supported, and your brain active so you can be fully fed and functioning.” I’m down with that. Having done both the master cleanse, and 2 day intense liver cleanse a few times before, I knew that I wanted something more hearty this time, a cleanse that would feed my mind, body, soul. The green juice cleanse from Moon Juice is a super clean, sugar free cleanse that you can feel good about drinking. Each day of the Green Cleanse includes:

•4 Goodness Greens-Kale, dandelion, parsley, spinach, and celery
-This juice alkalizes, heals, stimulates, and lifts mood.

•2 Canyon Greens-Collards, rainbow chard, parsley, ginger, celery, and cucumber
-This juice nourishes bones, enhances blood, and boosts energy.

•1 Enzymatic Aloe Tonic-Aloe Vera and E3 Live Digestive Enzymes
-Promotes radiant, glowing beauty and happiness.

• 1 Moon Milk of choice (Hemp & Coconut, Hazelnut, or Pumpkin)
(We chose Hemp & Coconut) Hemp seeds, coconut meat, alkaline, mineralized, and oxygenated water, coconut nectar, vanilla bean, and pink salt
-This milk beautifies, balances the brain, and is high in complete protein and omega-3 fatty acids.

***Each day of the cleanse you flood your system with 20 lbs of certified organic, raw produce and nuts or seeds! Try eating all those veggies…it’s just not possible…enter, juice!

The second reason is that I am a veteran cleanser, and I truly believe that cleansing helps reset your entire body. Moon Juice says “Juice cleansing enables the body to naturally go into detox mode while flooding it with live nutrients and enzymes. We like to think of our Moon Juice Cleanses as a juice feast, a holiday for the body, the ultimate indulgence.” Read their concise, and informative “cleanse basics” here. After cleansing I notice an overall change in my body chemistry. The two things effects that I feel the most are, increased energy, and decreased cravings. With all of the junk I loaded my body with from spending the holidays in Mexico, I knew a cleanse was on the horizon, and I’m glad I took the plunge. We started our five day cleanse yesterday. Today is day two. I have a slight headache, and yes, I feel hungry, but it’s nothing  overpowering and I know I can handle it. The benefits will be worth it! Ill check back in a few days with an update…but for now, go get your cleanse on!

 

 

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Snack Swap

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It’s Monday morning again and the question arises “What snacks do I bring for the work week ahead?” Do your body a favor and skip the soda and candy all together. There are so many yummy options to snack on that are healthier than their calorie filled counterparts. I’ve been loving Kevita’s sparkling probiotic drinks. If you aren’t a fan of kombucha, try this. I’ve found they are much lighter in flavor and have little to no sediment or weird pieces of “mother” (the source of fermentation for kombucha). At only 10 calories a bottle bc they use Stevia, you won’t be drinking your whole days worth of calories either (Im looking at you frappucinno). The coconut lime mojito and lemon cayenne are my two fave flavors. As for chips, try some Red Hot Blues, organic blue corn chips with a light dusting of cayenne, way better than Doritos. Sorry, I said it. Im also a fan of Kind Bars, especially the almond coconut flavor which tastes almost identical to an Almond Joy, and some Pirates Booty, a great option for a snack swap from Cheetos. As regulars at Cafe Gratitude Im surprised we didnt know about the “I am Cool” milkshake. It’s their version of a mint chocolate chip milkshake…and it TASTES BETTER!!! The “shake” is made with cashew coconut ice cream, fresh mint, Vitamineral Green powder, and raw cacao nibs. It’s seriously delicious.

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Herbed Yogurt Dip

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If you’re like me, mayo may scare you a little. And by a little, I mean terrify. Im not talking about the hand-crafted, delicious, garlicy spread better known as “aioli.” I m talking about that heavy, blue-labeled tub, filled with a slightly yellow, gelatinous substance attached to the slogan “Bring out the Hellmans, bring out the best.” I know I may sound like a sandwhich nazi, being the proponent of a mostly gluten-free diet, and mayo slanderer. But, I know there are a few anti-mayo rebels out there reading this who may appreciate what I am about to say. IT IS POSSIBLE TO CREATE RANCH DIP WITHOUT MAYO. There. I said it. Most decadent dip’s main ingredient is mayo, which is why spinach-artichoke, and any type of ranch dip, come with the heavy junk food stigma…pun intended. The recipe that follows is a thick, herby, creamy, dipping sauce worthy of the ranch genre, but conatins no mayo. how do I do this you ask?? One word…yogurt. Yogurt is the perfect substitute for mayo, yielding a tangy, equally as creamy dip, worthy of the football appetizer table. Yogurt has way less fat, and includes naturally occuring probiotics which keep your stomach healthy and happy. Mayo lovers and rebels alike, who are still reading this post, I challenge you to try this recipe. You won’t be dissapointed.

*Also great on baked potatoes
** Thin down with vinegar and oil for a salad dressing
***Add jalapenos & cilantro, blend with an immersion blender for spicy ranch dressing.

Ingredients:

Greek Yogurt-2 cups
Basil-1 1/2 tbs chopped
Dill-1 1/2 tbsp chopped
Chives-1 1/2 tbsp chopped
Garlic-6 toes minced
Shallot-1 tbsp minced
Lemon-1 tbsp juice
Soy-2 tsp
Salt-1 tsp
Pepper-1 tsp

Method:

Wash herbs thoroughly, dry well. Peel and mince both garlic and shallot. Add garlic to a small bowl, and sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of salt. Using the back of a spoon, rub salt into garlic until it forms a paste. In a large container add garlic paste and shallot to yogurt, mix well. Finely chop all herbs and incorporate into mixture. Add remaining salt, pepper lemon juice and soy to the bowl. Mix well and let sit in fridge overnight. Serve with crudites, I like roasted baby potatoes, cucumber, and French radishes.

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We visited Erewhon Natural Foods Market in West Hollywood for some grocery shopping and lunch last week. The only thing I can describe it as being close to, is Peck Market in Milan…and we left obsessed. Erewhon sells only the “purest, ethically and sustainably produced foods, wellness and beauty products, and household items” most of which is packaged in glass jars, and has a pretty hip juice bar as well (you actually sit down and order shots/drinks that are juiced right in fornt of you). We sampled a few of their pre-made items from the deli and loved the cauliflower crunch salad, so we made sure to list the ingredients in order to recreate it at home. Here is our attempt…it’s pretty damn good!

Ingredients:

Cauliflower (1/2 head)
Kale (1/2 head)
Garbanzo Beans (1 cup)

1 cup diced each, of the following:

Yellow Bell Pepper
Orange Bell Pepper
Celery
Cucumber
Sweet Peas
Red Onion
Green Olives

Vinaigrette:

Olive Oil (1/3 cup)
Hemp Oil (1/4 cup)
Lemon Juice (1/3 cup)
Garlic-diced (6 toes)
Dijon Mustard (2 tsp)

 

Directions:

Wash and dice everything except garbanzo beans. Combine together in a large mixing bowl. In the mixing cup attachment of an immersion blender, combine all vinaigrette ingredients. Pulse together, then steadily blend, until creamy and frothy. Pour over vegetables and fold in to mix.

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