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How To Find The Perfect Recipe Online

Do ever find yourself scouring over the internet looking for the perfect recipe?  Maybe you’re looking for vegan meals for earth day, a quick brown bag lunch idea, or a recipe to use up your produce that may go bad, but if you are like me, this process usually is overwhelming.  With so many recipes on sites like Cooks.com, AllRecipes.com, Epicurious it’s difficult to weed out the ones that are good and the ones I believe to actually be wholesome.  What’s an adventurous cook to do?

Recently I discovered a solution, and had to share it with all of you.  I love reading healthy food blogs.  I find the recipes incredibly unique, creative, healthy and ingredient lists are usually short!  I know Google Reader is nothing new, but I have never used it.  Now it’s my new best friend for making dinner.  

Maggie told me about a bunch of blogs she reads, so I started with her list in addition to my old standbys.  I get to stay up to date on all the good reads, but also when it comes time for lunch or dinner, I simply enter in the search bar an ingredient I want to use like a Laughing Cow Wedge and up pops up a bunch of ideas!

You can do it with any dish really.  Now, I can support my fellow bloggers while giving in to my obsessive habit of over researching on the internet.

After looking at the results that came up, I discovered a delicious idea for a vegetarian sandwich from PBFingers.com called Edamamemole.  Julie put 1/2 cup of edamame and 1 Laughing Cow Light Original Swiss Cheese in a food processor to create a delicious vegetarian protein spread for her bagel.  (The picture below is owned by PBFinger.com)

How yummy does that look!  I’m excited to try this recipe today on a slice of Ezekial bread with dijon mustard, tomato, lettuce and avocado! It’s a great inexpensive way to get your protein without using meat in a sandwich.  A half cup of edamame has 13 g of protein and just 120 calories, for a recipe total of 155 calories.  

This recipe would also work as a perfect snack as a dip with carrots and celery or crackers.  

Now, if I never searched my google reader for recipes, I never would have stumbled upon this creative yet oh so simple idea.  Thanks Maggie, Google and Julie!

Do you use google reader already to find new recipes?  Am I laggard on this one, or am I actually showing you something you didn’t already know?  What are some of your favorite food blogs you think I should add to my google reader?

Discalimer: I’ve partnered with The Laughing Cow. Click here for more info and click here to see all my ideas using the Laughing Cow.

How To Take Part In Earth Day

Link: How To Take Part In Earth Day

I posted this on Wednesday but here it is again now that it is actually Earth Day.  

Disclaimer: I just made breakfast and totally forgot it was Earth Day.  Yes, I used eggs and whey protein.  Not exactly vegan but still vegetarian!  Going vegan starting NOW.

Dinner Solution: 2 New Quick Fix Recipes

THIS workout just kicked my butt.  I burned over 400 calories in 45 minutes at home with just a pair of 8 lb dumbbells.  If you have an iPhone, I highly recommend downloading the Nike Women app.  

I’m pushing myself these days because I have a variety of events in May from a wedding, a photoshoot to a mini vacation, I want to look good and feel good while traveling.

When I’m looking to firm up, my go to is cutting carbs at dinner time.  I still have my oatmeal in the morning, don’t worry.  Last night I made steamed/roasted broccoli with Mrs Dash and some chicken with an avocado, red onion, and grape tomato salsa.  The avocado was not quite ripe, but it tasted just fine.  I added some Blue Cheese Dijon Mustard from Stonewall Kitchen as well.  

Earlier in the week I made a delicious pork dish  This here has a few more carbs but I cook for two don’t you know?  This recipe is from Eating Clean Magazine.  

I dipped the pork in egg whites and corn meal, pan fried then glazed with a balsamic vinegar glaze with raisins (2 TBSP Vinegar, 2 TBSP Water, 1/2 cup Raisins, simmer for 10 minutes in same pan as pork).  The glaze made the pork slightly cool to eat but not sure how to avoid it given the recipe.

The slaw was delicious!  To make it yourself, grab a bag of pre-cut cole slaw or confetti mix and add 2 finely chopped stalks of celery.  In a bowl mix together 2 TBSP of Apple Cider Vinegar, 1 TBSP of Olive Oil, 1 packet of NuNaturals or other stevia, 1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes, 1/2 tsp Pepper, Salt to taste.  Mix together and let sit for about 30 minutes before serving!  Roomie added some raisins and toasted almonds to the final product which were a fabulous addition.

Is Yoga The Answer To Finding Your Happy Weight?

In January, I decided that I wanted to do an experiment doing yoga.  Would daily yoga be enough exercise to maintain (or lose) weight by creating a greater sense of self awareness and allow me to tune in to my actual hunger levels?  

Studies have shown that yogis tend to be leaner than non practicers.  But how can this be when on average you burn less than 300 calories per 90 minute session?  The study suggested that it allows your mind to become more aware of how your body feels, like allowing you put down that fork when you are actually full or know the difference between eating out of boredom and eating because you are actually hungry.

I didn’t start my experiment until mid February when I saw a special at a Yoga studio in my neighborhood.  For the first two weeks, I took 10 classes.  I felt great but my tummy was starting to look slightly flabby.  I bought a pack of 10 more which I completed within 40 days.  

Try my Yoga Abs and Butt workout Video!

I decided to wear a heart rate monitor a few times to find out out how many calories I was actually burning.  I didn’t look at it during the class but after I noticed I didn’t even burn 300 calories in 90 minutes.  I was burning around 250 calories which is not exactly a great burn for your time.  I tried Hip Hop Yoga, Core Vinyasa, Forrest (which I do NOT like), Rock Your Asana and a deep stretching Vinyasa.  I love when I can get into a new position!  It’s an amazing accomplishment.

The days that I ran for 30 minutes before class however, showed a higher number even though the difficultly of the class was unchanged.  

I continued my very unscientific study after I returned from my trip to Australia, and found that my eating habits remained unchanged.  I still had the appetite of a runner but was exercising like a yogi.  This imbalance could lead to only one result, weight gain.  

Read my review of Jillian Michaels’ Yoga Melt Down DVD

Yes, it took 5 lbs on my frame to realize that yoga alone was not enough for me.  I continue to do yoga 2x a week for it’s amazing stretches and meditative experience.  I benefit greatly from yoga since I tend to get slightly stressed out rather easily.  I look forward to yoga unlike my strength training.  

My advice for you?  If you love yoga and do not have a hearty appetite, my experiment may yield different results.  Changing your eating habits does not happen overnight.  I’ve been a big runner for the past 5 years, and eat like one too.  I exercise hard so I can enjoy the foods I like.  

Final Tip:  Add yoga to your weekly schedule to prevent injury and listen to what your body needs but do not forget to include strength training and some cardio (or else you might start to get a belly like I did). 

Disclaimer: This study was very unscientific and may yield different results for other people.

Earth Day 2011: The Vegan Challenge

 

This Friday is Earth Day!  For over 40 years, Earth Day—April 22—has inspired and mobilized individuals and organizations worldwide to demonstrate their commitment to environmental protection and sustainability.  

I don’t believe I’ve ever actively participated in Earth Day on my own, so this year I’m taking the initiative and giving all of you my readers a challenge!  If you read my blog, you most likely are also concerned with your own health so here are my top two Earth Day healthy challenges for you to complete. 

 
1. Go vegan or vegetarian for the entire day.  

A less drastic approach would be to eat like a locavore (ie only eat foods that were grown nearby).  If you are already vegan, skip down to #2.  

 A 2006 United Nation report revealed that the “livestock sector” generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all the cars, trucks, trains, ships, and planes in the world combined. The livestock sector is one of the largest sources of carbon dioxide and the single largest source of both methane and nitrous oxide emissions. Nitrous oxide is considerably more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. According to the U.N., the meat, egg, and dairy industries account for a staggering 65 percent of nitrous oxide emissions.”  

To help combat climate change, cut back on the meat you eat.

“If every American skipped one meal of chicken per week and substituted vegetables and grains … the carbon dioxide savings would be the same as taking more than half a million cars off of U.S. roads. … If every American had one meat-free meal per week, it would be the same as taking more than 5 million cars off our roads. Having one meat-free day per week would be the same as taking 8 million cars off American roads.”

2. Plant a home garden in your backyard or even a window box of full of herbs if you live in a city like me.  

Starting your own little garden without pesticides benefits the environment and removes toxins from your own diet.  

Learn how to get started by visiting Learn2Grow.com.  

Having a backyard full of fresh herbs is handy when you’re cooking and saves you money.   You are reducing carbon emissions used to transport your food.  You are also reducing the amount waste that it takes to get the food from the foreign country to your table.  A garden significantly reduces greenhouse gas which promotes climate change, waste and improves your health.

There are many more ways to participate in Earth Day like drinking out of a reusable water bottle, walking or biking instead of driving but these are sorta obvious ones that I feel you can do on a regular basis starting today.  If you aren’t, start thinking about how to give back.  Going vegan even just one day a week takes a bit of research and preparation which is why I’m posting this today!  

If you plan to go vegan, click the “Like” button below or share on Twitter with the hashtag #VeganEarthDay.  I always say I could be a vegan and now I have a moral reason to do so once a week.  I’m helping the environment :)

Here are some vegan recipes to help you get started:

Vegan Breakfast: Baked Oatmeal Banana Bite Muffins

Vegan Lunch: Sesame Maple Baked Tofu Salad

Vegan Dinner: Sweet Potato Edamame Greens Bowl 

I posted my blog on this topic already, but here is my video if you prefer watching to reading!

I posted my blog on this topic already, but here is my video if you prefer watching to reading!

Earth Day 2011 Activities and Vegan Challenge – The Sarah Fit Show (by SarahsFabChannel)