Healthy & Kosher

 

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.


 

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.