Healthy & Kosher

 

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.


 

Break Fast with Cheese

 

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Typical breakfast fare includes bagels, lox, cream cheese, maybe a few quiches and maybe a baked ziti or pasta salad.  Sometimes you want to try something new, but it has to be easy and something you can make ahead.  So I got together with The Cheese Guy and came up with a few new recipes for you.


 

Healthy Holiday Menus Under 600 Calories

 

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We all know the High holidays are filled with reflection, prayer and lots and lots of eating.  This September will essentially be a month of big meals.  There is no hard data on the average Rosh Hashanaha meal, but considering the challah, the honey, the meats, starchy sides and desserts it has got to rival those of Thanksgiving, which according to Caloric Control Council tops 4500 calories and 229 grams of fat.  That is more than double the average persons daily recommended calorie limit.  I know it is the holidays and we should be joyous and not think about fat and calories, but we are not just celebrating for one day, we have 9 of them!!!

So, go ahead and enjoy yourself on the first night and then consider lightening it up a bit for the other 8 holiday days.  If you are careful with serving sizes and plan to eat lots of veggies you can keep the calories down without missing any of the fun.  An average slice of challah will run you between 60 and 100 calories.  Excluding the challah, here are three menus to help you keep it light as we welcome in a new year.


 

The Healthy Apple

 

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Apples are my go to healthy snack all year long.  They are sturdy and and can sit in the bottom of my messy purse without getting too bruised or (more importantly) damaging the rest of my stuff.  Apples fill the need for a perfect anytime snack, and whether you like your fruit sweet, tangy or tart you’ll find an apple that will willingly cooperate. The average apple has less than 100 calories and provides 4 grams of fiber. It will take you from lunch until dinner or keep you from the midnight munchies if you like to snack at night.  When May comes around and bright red strawberries hit the grocery shelves, I leave the apples behind and binge on berries, peaches, nectarines and plums all summer long.   But now that  fall, Rosh Hashanah and apple picking season are approaching, I start to crave the crunch. While apples don’t need anything to make them more appealing (apple-ing?) , I also enjoy cooking with apples and playing with the flavors of the season.  Who can resist an apple dipped in honey on Rosh Hashanah?  What about an apple dipped in date honey and roasted just enough to caramelize to perfection? These roasted apples are really best eaten right off the pan (I just can’t help myself), being careful not to burn your mouth, of course! But if you fancy yourself a bit more civilized, you could serve them atop a vanilla frozen dessert or along side a sponge cake for a delicious holiday treat.

 

Click here to get the recipe for Roasted Apples with Date Honey


 

The Best Olive Oil For Rosh Hashanah *Giveaway*

 

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You all know how much Jamie loves to share Simanim inspired recipes and menus this time of year. It’s a fun challenge to integrate as many Simanim (symbolic) foods as we can over the course of the high holidays and start the New Year right.

So I want to take us beyond tradition.  If someone can suggest that celery and raisins on your Rosh Hashanah table will help you get a “raise in salary” then I’m willing to go so far to suggest that adding more olive to your meals will increase the love in your life (if you unscramble the letters you get “I love”).  For that matter, olives and olive oil are good for your heart, too. So why not use the best tasting olive oil you can find, especially now during this auspicious time of year.


 

Back to the Borscht Belt

 

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Confession time!!!  I’ve never had borscht before. Not fresh. Not homemade. Not hot and not cold. I love beets, but borscht just never did it for me.

So it was funny when I was telling my dad about my assignment to come up with recipes using Gold’s Borscht that he admitted that he had been craving borscht and enjoyed it mixed  with a bit of parve sour cream. Craving for borscht?  Could I really be related to him?


 

The 7 Best Zucchini Recipes – New Ways To...

 

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I will never forget the first Summer I was part of a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).  It was about 10 years ago and I was living in D.C. and they had a drop off location on the way home from work, so it was perfect.  Each week I would go and discover new produce from the farm I supported including many foods I had never seen before.  Some things they had less of and some they had more of, that is the nature of farm business.  We didn’t get any edible corn that year, but we did get an abundance of Summer squash.  Once they started handing out squash, they didn’t stop.  It was the one vegetable that you could take as you wanted and there was still more to go around and oh, I forgot to mention the size of some of these squash, they were enormous.  If only I knew then what I know now, there are so many ways to cook squash and they are all delicious.  Of course there is kugel and muffins and latkes and you can find those and more here when you search for zucchini, but when those get old check out these newbies.

Zucchini Spaghetti Primavera


 

Flavorful Recipes Using BBQ Sauce

 

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In life there are two kinds of people.  Ketchup people and mustard people.  I am a mustard people.  I’ve never been a fan of ketchup, but I actually love BBQ sauce. Okay, I guess that means there are three kinds of people.  The rich, smoky flavor of BBQ sauce is very satisfying and depending on the sweetness or spice can offer a range of flavors that ketchup can’t seem to match. I never really used BBQ sauce on anything but meat or chicken until recently, and I can kick myself for not trying it sooner.

BBQ-Seitan-Pizza


 

Banana Oat Chocolate Muffin Top Cookies Link Up...

 

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I love making muffins. They are quick and easy and a favorite “quick” breakfast. One of my favorite muffin recipes is for Multigrain Blueberry Muffins. I use this recipe as a base and often change the grains based on what I have around the house. It’s hard to mess this one up and it’s a healthy treat my kids love!

For this month’s Kosher Connection link up, we decided to do a blog swap. We were each anonymously assigned a different blogger and asked to make one of their recipes. I laughed when I was assigned to Lil Miss Cakes, a baking blog mostly showcasing my neighbor and friend, Melissa’s gorgeous cakes. As a Dietitian who likes to bake, I stick to cookies and bundt cakes, I knew that I was not going anywhere near those works of art. But when I stumbled on these muffin top cookies I knew I found my perfect recipe.


 

Prefast Meal for Tisha B’av

 

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It is a very strong custom to refrain from eating meat and drinking alcohol during the 9 days leading up to Tisha B’av.  This year, Tisha B’av falls on July 16, 2013.  We have shared quite a few dairy menus and meal ideas for you over the past week and now I want to offer some tips for the fast including my menu suggestion.

To start with I always push hydration.  There is nothing as important during these hot days of Summer than staying hydrated.  During the three days leading up to the fast it is best to focus as much as possible on drinking more fluids, preferably water or herbal iced tea.