Healthy & Kosher

 

The Lava Lamp Cocktail Link Up

 

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If the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a lava lamp is a visit to Spencer’s at your local mall or a blissed out night during college listening to psychedelic music, you’re probably not alone, but I’m here to tell you there’s a little more to the Lava Lamp than all that.

I was inspired by a friend’s recent story about a Lava Lamp cocktail and I was able to create a fun at home version that you can enjoy with or without alcohol, so it’s a perfect party drink whether you’re having some friends over or stuck at home with the kids.


 

Mustard Greens Recipes

 

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Mustard greens are part of the healthy “dark leafy green” vegetable family.  They are similar in texture to kale and collard greens, but with a bit more body.  And, like the name implies, mustard greens have a tangy, peppery bite reminiscent of mustard.   Mustard greens are wildly nutritious: low in calories, a good source of fiber and high in Vitamins K, A and C.  Additionally, mustard greens store very well in the refrigerator for at least one week.   I love them as a main course any time of day when they are sauteed with garlic and topped with a poached egg.  Try my recipe for Sauteed Garlic Mustard Greens with Sweet Potato and Poached Egg.

shaved mustard greens

Shaved Mustard Green Salad


 

DIY – Make Your Own Flavored Seaweed Snacks

 

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We make sushi at least twice a month in my house and it’s always a big hit.  In addition to the fish, rice and veggies, my kids can’t get enough of the Nori seaweed.  They ask for whole pieces just to snack on while we’re rolling.  I used to think they were crazy, until I started to see toasted seaweed snacks at every market. My kids were onto something.  The only difference between our kitchen table snacks and the latest supermarket fad is that the new products added assorted flavors.

I haven’t been able to find any toasted seaweed snacks with kosher certification so I decided to make my own.  It is really easy and fun to make your own flavored seaweed.  The kids can make it themselves, because I can’t seem to make them fast enough!


 

Using Greek Yogurt In Pesto Sauce

 

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Let’s face it. Most ingredients that promise to taste better than its non-healthy counterpart are usually and sadly not as good. Greek yogurt is one of the sole exceptions. It is an ingredient rich in protein, potassium, vitamin B, and probiotics. While boasting so many nutritious qualities, it is also quite a spectacular ingredient to cook with. Beyond yogurt and granola, there is so much you can do with Greek yogurt.

As the first chalav yisrael Greek yogurt, Norman’s Greek yogurt has revolutionized the kosher market with a high quality, good-for-you product.  Norman’s Greek  yogurt is rich, tangy and can be substituted for cream in many recipes, from sweet to savory.  Pesto in cream sauce is a favorite pasta dish of mine. It is creamy and herbaceous and hits all the right notes. I have been making this dish for years every Shavuot and for family dinners. I experimented with substituting heavy cream for Norman’s plain Greek yogurt and this dish was born. I am always ecstatic when I can say that using a healthier ingredient not only achieves the desired results but actually tastes even better.


 

Super Bowl No Meat Tacos

 

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It’s confession time.  I hate sports.  You would never believe that I grew up in a house where Sundays meant my dad and brother were jumping and screaming in front of the TV rooting for the Miami Dolphins.  My dad can’t understand where I came from and how I could have absolutely no interest in watching any sporting event.  I’d rather watch paint dry.

Well, the joke is on me. My husband enjoys watching football and baseball, but generally let’s me run the show.  But now I’m outnumbered.  Help!


 

Healthy Resolutions You Can Keep

 

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Happy New Year! Welcome to a new year and a new you! January has long been a time for resolutions and plans to improve ourselves in the coming year. The most common resolutions made are losing weight and getting fit. The most common resolutions broken are losing weight and getting fit. However, this doesn’t have to be true for you this year. Making a resolution to become healthier can be as easy as changing your focus and creating a healthy lifestyle.

Now while that may sound intimidating to completely change the way you live, it really doesn’t have to be scary or difficult. All it takes is changing your mindset and setting up your day to minimize temptation and maximize good habits. This can be as simple as throwing out that ashtray, and putting your running shoes where you’ll see them (and use them).


 

Comfort Me With White Bean Stew *Link Up*

 

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Years ago I made a random white bean side dish that I left on the hot plate to stay warm for Shabbat dinner.  When I was ready to serve the dish the liquid had mostly evaporated and I feared a disaster in front of a table full of hungry guests.  Turned out to be the best dish on the table.  I love happy accidents, they lead to the best recipes.

This recipe is  perfect on a cold winter night when all you want is something hot, soothing and full of flavor, this concentrated bean stew totally does the trick.   The secret is the sun-dried tomatoes.  The longer they sit the more they infuse the stew with a salty, umami rich flavor you will want to savor. And let’s face it, we can all use a bit of sun in December.


 

A Hot Winter Drink From The Middle East

 

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The first time I encountered saklep (also known as sachlav, sahlab, sachlab, salep and several more) was about 15 years ago visiting Israel during my school break.  My boyfriend was studying abroad in Jerusalem at Hebrew University and I was visiting for a week.  We spent the entire week eating our way through Israel (not much has changed, I was a foodie even then).  I remember my first kosher Kentucky Fried Chicken and kosher McDonald’s plus hidden gems like The Waffle Lady, who would hand out hot Belgian waffles from a storefront in Jerusalem that was the size of a walk-in closet.  But one of my most interesting food experiences that trip was discovering a hole in the wall in the Old City on a cold February afternoon where I ordered a hot Saklep.  It was a memory I will never forget.  Aromatic and soothing and filling with texture and a rich creaminess that I can still picture 15 years later.


 

Homemade Dried Falafel Mix

 

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Homemade Dried Falafel Mix Posted 12/10/2013 by Melinda Strauss
I love snacking on falafel balls but they are usually such a process to prepare and I never get around to making them. With this easy homemade dried falafel mix, all you have to do is mix together a few ingredients and it's time to nosh! This mix is also great on chicken and fish.

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Whole Grain Farro Recipes

 

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Whole grains have become wildly popular in recent years but I don’t think this is just another “hot” culinary trend. Spelt, farro, wheatberries, quinoa and so many other grains that once seemed so weird or exotic are now everyday staples in our kitchens. Recipes abound.

That’s good news, not only because whole grains are healthy, but because there are so many of them. Each has a different taste and texture, so it’s a certainty you’ll find at least one or two to your liking. They also add amazing variety to our diets, which helps ease the boredom factor when it comes to dinner.


 

Choosing The Right Types of Oil

 

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Chanukah may be the holiday of olive oil, but take a trip down your grocery aisle, and you’ll see as many different oils as there are colours of Chanukah candles. What is the difference between all of them and how is one to choose?

There are two main categories of fats; saturated fat and unsaturated fat.


 

Bean, Corn and Pear Surprise Salad and Link Up

 

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I used to make a delicious and nutritious black bean and corn salad all the time. It is one of those easy, last minute dishes you can almost always make in minutes when you’re worried there won’t be enough food. All you need is a can of red or black beans, a can of corn and fresh chopped peppers, onions and cilantro.

So, when the Kosher Connection decided to have a Chopped-style challenge this month that required us to use a creative combination of canned corn, pears and Mike and Ike candies (at least two out of three) it didn’t take long for me to come up with my recipe.


 

Choose The Best Cereal To Eat For Breakfast

 

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Hear the word “breakfast” and you may conjure up a picture of the archetypal cereal bowl and milk or perhaps you envision a mad morning dash where you’re just lucky to get all the kids out along with their lunches.

Breakfast has long been touted as the most important meal of the day, with very good reason. Besides for providing the needed start up for a long day (we have been fasting for at least 7 hours), it also…


 

Make a Healthier Pot Pie

 

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Hi, I’m Rena! I recently started blogging over at my No Way That’s Healthy! where I give ideas on how to live a healthy lifestyle without sacrificing time and taste. I’m all about easy and delicious foods. We shouldn’t have to deprive ourselves of the foods we once loved. We just need to make healthier versions which can be enjoyed without the guilt. With a husband who is your typical “meat and potatoes” type of guy and kids who we all know can be picky, I need to be sure the food is good. Luckily, they all seem to love what I make and don’t ask for anything else. On my blog I also share tips to making healthy eating easier and ways to make exercise doable for our busy lives.

Today, I decided to share with you a classic American comfort dish, but this recipe comes without any guilt.


 

Surprising Dishes with Pomegranates

 

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Did you know that pomegranate seeds can complement so many dishes? You’ll find it surprising that just 2 spoons of pomegranate seeds will enrich even a simple Israeli salad.

When it comes to Israel, especially at this time of year, New-Year pomegranates flood the markets with their beautiful shapes and colors.  So, before I share some recipes from my ‘Cook in Israel’ cookbook  I’d like to share with you a little more about these wonderful fruits.