Flourless Chili Cherry Chocolate Brownies

Christmas may be over. But my fiasco with baking sure is not.

As you can see.

My mother, myself and my sister. All in our lil’ adorable Anthropologie aprons, we haven’t taken these aprons off in 4 days, hence we are snowed in with 30 inches of snow and can barely see our cars.

So, I’m just baking.  And eating.  Hehe..

This delicious gluten-free brownie recipe is perfect enjoyed bite after bite or crumbled atop your Greek yogurt parfait.

Whichever way you choose. I’m sure you’ll be nibblin’ on these brownies throughout the holiday season.

I may even whip them up again for a little New Year’s Eve treat.

And speaking of New Year’s…

Are you setting a resolution?

I’d love to hear what your goals are for 2011.

Here are a few of my New Year’s Tips n’ Thoughts on starting off a healthy New Year.

Be Sure to Make Time for Yourself

This time of the year everyone wants to see you, visit you, make plans with you, invite you to parties, but be sure to take a step back and carve out a bit of time for you. Read a good book, take a warm bath, jump in your car and take a road trip, explore a new town…the options are endless. Just remember to enjoy yourself, don’t put yourself on a schedule and savor each moment of quality alone time.

Ring in the New Year Healthfully

The holidays can be quite overwhelming for those of us with many family obligations, therefore take some time to plan your healthy New Year and the steps you are going to take to get to your goal.  Are you trying to eat ‘cleaner’? Feel better? Be more active and happy? Whatever your goal or goals may be, be sure to jot them down and take some notes about how you feel each morning when you wake up and each evening before bed.  Keeping a journal of your thoughts and feelings will keep you focused on your New Year goals.  Jot down your emotions, regrets, hopes and joys and don’t forget to think about your future. What are you hoping to accomplish this year?  Show yourself what amazing things lie ahead of you in 2011 by journaling your plans and goals for 2011. 

Make New Year’s Eve a Relaxing Event

In need of a little R n’ R?  Take it easy on New Year’s Eve. Invite a few friends over for a laid back dinner party or pot-luck.  You can even invite friends over to bring all the ingredients and you can create your own feast together.  Make your own gourmet pizzas, chili or stew for a fun get-together that’s laid back and delicious.  As for me, I could surely do a gluten-free New Year’s dinner party…

Who’s in?

I’ll bring the hot-coco…

Flourless Vegan Chili n’ Cherry Chocolate Brownies

Makes 16

Ingredients

  • 2 cups black beans, cooked
  • Egg substitute for 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance Vegan Butter Sticks
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1/8 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/8 tsp. all spice
  • Pinch of freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 tsp. almond extract
  • 1/3 cup stevia for baking
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao nibs
  • 1/3 cup dried cherries

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Prepare a baking dish with nonstick baking spray.
  3. In a large bowl, combine beans, eggs, butter, raw cacao, sea salt, pepper, chili powder, all spice, sand stevia in a food processor; process until smooth.
  4. Slowly add in raw cacao nibs and dried cherries; stir to combine.
  5. Transfer mixture to the prepared baking pan.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Remove from oven; set aside to cool before serving.
  8. Cut into squares.
  9. Enjoy!

Healthy Holiday Tips

It’s that time of year, again.

Yeahhhh.

Sleigh bells ring, are ‘ya listenin’?

In the sleigh, snow is glistenin’…

And I could go on and on and on…

But I’ll stop and share a few of my healthy holiday tips since Christmas and New Year’s are right around the corner.

With eggnog on your left and gingerbread on your right, it can be tough to keep yourself in line during the holidays.

But, that’s what the holidays are all about.

Enjoying your life, your year, your happiness, your family and friends.

So, go ahead a sip on that eggnog, take a nibble of your gingerbread cookie, but be sure to keep your mind ‘aware’ of what you are consuming and check in with your stomach and your brain to ensure you’re not overdoin’ it on the ho, ho ho’s, if ya know what I mean.

So, what are some healthy holiday tips for this massive week of food n’ celebration kicking off with eats n’ treats on Christmas Eve, then good ol’ Christmas Day and who can forget the food celebrations on New Year’s Eve along with the comfort food of New Years Day.

Lighten Up the Foods You Enjoy

This can be anything from an appetizer to a dessert.  Try Greek yogurt instead of mayonnaise, avocado instead of butter, cinnamon and nutmeg instead of cinnamon sugar and stevia in lieu of sugar.  You can create delicious homemade holiday meals from lasagna to praline pie without the added fat, sugar and additives.  Get creative and use fresh fruit zest, fresh herbs, fruit and vegetable purees and low-fat unsweetened dairy alternatives such as rice milk and almond milk.

Keep Drinkin’

No, not alcohol as we all know alcohol dehydrates us. And no, not soda or diet soda.  Sip seltzer with a squeeze of fresh lime, a few pinches of freshly chopped mint or basil and a dash of cranberry juice.  Top it off with a few ice cubes and you have a delicious mock-tail to sip throughout your evening.

Taste Each Bite, Enjoy Each Taste

Learn to enjoy your food. Yes, it is the holiday season, but there’s no need to ambush Grandma’s German Chocolate Cake or inhale Aunt Val’s stuffed mushrooms.  Take a bite here and a bite there, if you enjoy it, great… if you don’t then place the food aside, sit with your thoughts and understand that your mind is telling your body and stomach that it’s not enjoying this nibble.  So, move on. Take a sip of that good ol’ seltzer and pace yourself.  Take a deep breath and enjoy your food, one bite at a time.

Add in the Good, Without Avoiding the Bad

Fill your plate with healthy fare such as vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats and whole grains.  Steer clear of the heavy casseroles and instead opt for some mashed sweet potatoes, rice pilaf, lean proteins such as fish, tofu or turkey, vegetables and salad.  Squeeze some fresh lemon juice onto your meal along with a dash of vinegar, and a few slices of avocado for some heart-healthy fats to round out your meal.

Eat Breakfast

Just because the day ahead is going to be filled with lots of food, don’t make the mistake of forgoing your morning meal to save room for the big event.  You’ll simply end up ravenous by the time dinner is served and you’ll devour half the bread basket, cookies n’ biscuits before you can even reach for the healthy fare.

Get Up and Move

Yes, you heard me.  Pop the pie in the oven and go for a walk before your company arrives.  Offer to help wash the dishes after the meal or help the host prepare the food and table settings.  This will keep you busy and engaged in the action without lulling around filling up your belly with appetizers.

Enjoy Your Company and Your Gathering

Remember, this is a holiday. A celebration. A time to gather with loved ones n’ family n’ friends to share fun memories and stories and good times over delicious food.  Be sure to make yourself feel ‘loved’ and give ‘love’ to those who are close to you.  Isn’t it amazing how great it feels to give? It brings about a euphoric feeling…I just love it.  Whether it’s giving my teddy-bear of a daddy a hug or watching him open his Christmas gift from me, I just love giving.  Focus on the Give this year and Give a part of you…. I assure you, you’ll be amazed at how good it makes you feel about yourself… And with those ‘feel good’ vibes, you’ll be all smiles and satisfied with your life and your surroundings without focusing on food.

How do you lighten up your holiday eats?

I’m starting my cookie baking tomorrow… Still debating which recipe to start with…

It’s the Most Wonderful Time Of The Year…

Fa-la-la La-la-la la.

Ho-Ho-Ho!

And here’s a fun lil’ site for you to play with…I’ve just discovered Kitchen PC which let’s you find recipes, plan meals and add recipes to your very own calendar, pantry and cookbook.

Be sure to check out my latest recipe creations for Pizza Packets, which are delicious gluten-free pizza seasoning packets that can be used in any dish from omelets to salad dressings to lasagna.

My ‘POM Wonderful’ Dinner Party

Well, let’s just say it all started with a lil email stating, “You are one of 100 bloggies to host a POM Wonderful Dinner Party“… WOW! Was my first reaction, I sent in my proposal to POM Wonderful with some fun POMMY ideas for foodie fun and I was chosen…

Okay, Thought 1:

I live in Manhattan.

Blank Stare…

Yes, I live in a shoe box.

Well, maybe a pin-hole.

A belly button?

Okay, you get the point.

I am Carrie Bradshaw (heehe, All you Sex n’ the City fans) …

Instead, I write about food…

And I love it.

L-O-V-E, LOVE it.

So, I put on my thinking cap and pondered.

Thought 2: Who shall attend?

Thought 3: What will I cook?  And bake?

Thought 4: Settle down, Amie. You have 2 huge cases of fresh pomegranates at your front door and the FedEx guy thinks you’re nuts!

Thought 4: Stop with the thoughts and Get to Work!

Thought 5: Final Thought….Let’s make it a Gluten-Free POM Party…

‘T’was the night before my POM Party, and all I could think about was the decor, the dishes, the entrees, the desserts and o’ what fun I had developing gluten-free POM recipes using POM Wonderful and the two large crates of pomegranates inside my tiny abode.  There I was…in my ‘lil apt…with the Kitchen Aid mixer buzzin’, the stove heatin’ and my fridge about to burst open with fresh produce and pomegranates!

Then, after a deep breathe, lots of planning and lots of fun…I was ready…

Welcome to my POM Dinner Party.

The dinner was held on November the 12th…a fine Friday evening here in the Upper East side of Manhattan.  My Gluten-Free ‘POM’ dinner party was inspired by a Fall Harvest theme in an intimate setting…

Picture eight Manhattanites, nestled into my cozy Manhattan apartment perched onto eight large maroon colored pillows on hardwood floors with a beautiful display of my homemade POM inspired dinner menu. I cooked and baked everything from scratch using POM Wonderful products in every dish and beverage throughout the evening. My menu consisted of POM infused Pecan Crackers served with POM Conserve for appetizers.  Roasted Turkey, Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Pomegranate Arils, POM n’ Macadamia Stuffed Squash, POM infused Crispy Parsnip n’ Apple Fries with POM infused Sweet Pea n’ Asparagus Guacamole for the main course. And, for dessert, POM Truffles and Gluten Free Red Velvet Pistachio Coconut Muffins, which are both infused with POM.   The beverages for the evening were POM spritzers, hot apple cider infused with POM and hot POM tea in cute little maroon mugs. Each guest was given a bottle of POM Wonderful and a fresh pomegranate in an adorable POM Wonderful gift bag.

The ‘table’ for this meal was Manhattan-style… well, it’s Manhattan-style for me… I laid a beautiful cream linen tablecloth on the floor surrounded by the eight large POM-colored pillows, which were used as seats for my guests, four maroon colored candles burned during the dinner and soft jazz music played in the background.

The POM Dinner Party event started off with each of my guests and I opening a bottle of POM and using it to create every dish and beverage. Each guest was in charge of their own bottle and was instructed to finish it by the end of the evening throughout the cooking and baking in each of their dishes and beverages.  Before we dug into our POM dinner, each guest and myself sat around the table with our own fresh pomegranates in our hands. We went around the ‘table’ and spoke about ways in which we use pomegranates in our everyday lives to add these powerful antioxidants into each meal, snack and beverage! With these unique and fun-filled POM foodie ideas, we elaborated on my ‘Menu’ and by the end of the evening all eight POM Wonderful bottles and all eight pomegranates (plus many more for snackin’ on and tossin’ extra into recipes) were incorporated into our Fall Harvest Feast.

I then broke out my famous ‘How to Open a Pomegranate’ presentation…with a POM Wonderful and a pomegranate in each of our hands…we got to work.  “Okay everyone…aprons on because this is gunna get messy,” I shouted…

Then turned up the jazz music and got to work.

  1. Using a sharp paring knife, gently slice off the crown of the pomegranate.
  2. Place on a flat surface, cut side up and score the skin at each of the sections on the fruit.
  3. Gently open each section and using your fingers, loosen the inside seeds, also known as ‘arils’ into a bowl.  Discard the body of the pomegranate and focus on the arils.
  4. Transfer arils to a mesh strainer and rinse with cool water.
  5. Place onto a paper towel to dry and they’re ready to use in any dish!
  6. Enjoy!

I am honored to share this incredible POM infused evening on The Healthy Apple, where I preach about fresh farm-to-table clean, natural gluten-free food and lifestyles, which is exactly what this dinner party emulated to my guests. This evening was about my effort with eating clean and adding an integral health component with POM infused dishes and beverages.   I am incredibly passionate for the POM Wonderful brand as it truly is a brand that I believe in and love so much. All of the POM products are healthy, clean and delicious, which is what The Healthy Apple encompasses and which is my message to my family, friends, colleagues, readers and the online community.

My energy and passion portrayed POM in a beautiful light and created a unique look on the classic POM beverage…with a Gluten-Free twist, I created a fun, intimate spin on a classic dinner party in Manhattan!

I’m sure you’re all yearnin’ for these delicious POM Gluten-Free recipes mentioned above…so, here is a sneak peak at the POM appetizers that were served.

POM Conserve served with Gluten-Free POM Pecan Crackers

POM Conserve

Ingredients

  • 16 oz. POM Wonderful
  • 4 lbs. fresh pomegranates, roughly chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup crystallized ginger

Directions

  1. In a saucepan, bring POM Wonderful to a boil over medium heat.  Add pomegranates and agave nectar; cook for 20 minutes.  Stir often.  Add ginger, cook for another 20 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat; set aside to cool; mixture will thicken when cooled.
  3. Serve with POM crackers.

Gluten-Free POM Pecan Crackers

Ingredients

  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup pecans, roasted and chopped
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 Tbsp. POM Wonderful
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients; mix until combined.
  3. Prepare a large nonstick baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Place dough in the center of the sheet.  Roll dough with a rolling pin until it is 1/2 inch thick and is covering the baking sheet.
  5. Using a sharp knife, slice the dough into 3 inch rectangles.
  6. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Serve with POM Conserve.
  8. Enjoy!

How do you ‘POM’?

Healthy Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Tips n’ Recipes

Tired of the heavy sides and mundane main dishes at your Thanksgiving table? Well, I’ve got some fun, fresh n’ healthy tips to keep your dining experience as pleasureful and worry-free as possible…

What scares you most about enjoying Thanksgiving gluten-free? Is it the contamination? The stuffing? The lack of taste?

We’ve all got our ‘scaredy pants’ on during the holidays…worries there may be a trace of gluten or soy or dairy in a beverage, dessert, main dish, side or condiment…

No matter what worries you the most, be sure to always check the ingredients on the labels and stick to ‘fresh, clean’ foods made from Mother Earth…

Here are a few tips n’ swaps for you to test out on your Turkey table…

Enjoy!

Steer Clear of Canned Gravy

  • Instead use the drippings from your freshly roasted turkey.  I don’t like to take a chance on ‘processed’ foods, when you can simply get creative and combine your fresh drippings with a dollop of Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of oregano and black pepper.

Swap Out the Pumpkin Pie Filling

  • Who doesn’t love pure, organic canned pumpkin? I know I sure do…use pure pumpkin instead of the pie filling to nix the added sugars.. the real stuff is best when you use it with a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg and all-spice.  You won’t be sacrificing the flavor and you’ll reap the healthy vitamins from the pure pumpkin, too!

Jarred Cranberry Sauce

  • Create your very own chutney using fresh cranberries, apples, pears, stevia and ginger.  The taste will surely beat that of anything inside a jar…so, go ahead turn on that stove top and whip up your very own cranberry sauce or chutney to serve atop your turkey and roasted veggies.  You can even use this chutney to top your desserts, as well.

Heavy Whipped Topping

  • Instead, try whipping a mixture of Greek yogurt with gluten-free vanilla extract, stevia on medium-high speed with a mixer until stiff peeks form.  This will create a beautiful whipped topping without the additives or preservatives in bottles whipped toppings and processed heavy creams.

Boxed Mashed Potatoes

  • Break out the creativity at your farmer’s market or produce stand.  Try mashed beets, parsnips, sweet potatoes, turnips…I could go on forever…these natural root veggies add the perfect touch of sweetness without the starchy additives, sugars and preservatives.  Serve these mashed veggies with the above chutney and whipped topping for a special decadent treat.

And here is an amazing offer to receive an iPad from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, where I received my Nutrition Certification.

Prospective students who enroll in IIN this Friday are eligible to receive an iPad, so tell your friends and family to call IIN at (877) 730-5444 from 10am – 4pm ET on Friday, November 26.  All you have to do is mention my name, Amie Valpone to ensure you receive referral credit when you enroll.  It’s a win-win situation!

Also, I’m offering all of you Free Shipping for any order in my Shop over $50 with code: FREESHIP50

Here are a few Gluten-Free dishes you can easily serve up for your Turkey Table…

Chilled Cranberry Macadamia Crunch

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 3 large pears, cored and chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 12 dates, chopped
  • 3 large Honey crisp apples, cored and chopped
  • 3/4 cup macadamia nuts, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp. stevia
  • 1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tsp. freshly graded lime zest
  • Pinch of all-spice
  • Pinch of chili powder
  • Topping: Greek plain yogurt
  • Topping: Ground flax seeds

Directions

  1. In a food processor, combine cranberries, pears, dried cherries, dried apricots, basil, dates, apples and macadamia nuts; pulse until minced.
  2. Transfer to a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients.  Gently toss to combine.
  3. Place into the refrigerator for 1 hour before serving.
  4. Serve chilled with a dollop of Greek plain yogurt and a sprinkle of ground flax seeds.
  5. Enjoy!

Gluten-Free Golden Stuffin’ Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado, very finely mashed
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, diced
  • 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 12 pieces gluten-free bread, roughly chopped into 1/2 inch cube-like pieces
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup baby portabello mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • Sea salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Prepare a muffin tin with non-stick baking spray.  Set aside.
  3. In a medium sized pot over medium heat, cook avocado, sweet potatoes and vegetable broth; approximately 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine gluten-free bread, raisins, mushrooms, rosemary, egg, vinegar, cinnamon, sea salt and pepper; gently toss to combine.  Add warm avocado mixture and mix well.
  5. Transfer mixture to prepared muffin tins.  Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Remove from oven; set aside to cool before removing.
  7. Serve warm.
  8. Enjoy!

Gluten-Free Cherry Chia Cornbread Pudding

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado, finely mashed
  • 2 cups grilled corn kernels
  • 1 1/2 cups rice milk
  • 1 3/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup fresh cherries, pitted and chopped
  • 1 tsp. sage
  • 1 tsp. lemon peel
  • 1/4 tsp. cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • Optional Topping: Greek plain yogurt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Prepare a baking dish with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.
  3. In a food processor, pulse avocado and grilled corn for 15-20 seconds.  Transfer to a large mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients; mix well to combine.
  4. Transfer mixture into prepared baking dish.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Serve with fresh cranberry sauce and a dollop of Greek plain yogurt.
  7. Enjoy!

Happy Thanksgiving!


Gluten-Free n’ Vegan Tips For Fueling Your Body

Here is a useful guide to help those of you who are Gluten-Free and/or Vegan.  As we all know, I am Gluten-Intolerant, therefore I enjoy consuming all of these foods in my meals and snacks throughout the day.

I hope this guide is helpful for those of you new to the gluten-free world and hope this helps you navigate through your farmers markets and produce aisles of your food store.

Go ahead and dive into these delicious, fresh, ‘clean’ foods knowing that they are safe and good for you and your body…

Carbohydrates- Essential for energy. Reach for complex carbohydrates instead of simple carbs such as sugars, white flours and processed grains that are void of vitamins and minerals.

  • Gluten-Free Pasta (Corn or Gluten-Free Flour Based)
  • Gluten-Free Cereals
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Gluten-Free Oats
  • Gluten-Free Breads
  • Whole Grain Gluten-Free Rice

Fiber- Vital for health: keeps bowels healthy, lowers cholesterol and regulates appetite.

  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains

Fats– Essential for brain and nerve functions.  Look to get Omega 3 fatty acids as often as possible.  Olive oil is best used for cooking.  Be sure to avoid hydrogenated fats and trans fats.  Keep your oils fresh by storing them in a dark, cool place and never re-use oil.

  • Flaxseed oil
  • Hempseed oil
  • Grapeseed oil
  • Olive oil
  • Avocados
  • Nuts (especially hazelnuts and almonds)

Protein-Used for repair of body tissues and growth for enzymes and hormones.  Protein needs are met by a varied, balanced diet so be sure to get proteins from many different sources.

  • Tofu
  • Beansprouts
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Nut/Seed Milk (almond, hemp, etc.)
  • Soy Milk
  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Quinoa, Buckwheat, Brown Rice)
  • Nuts
  • Hummus

Vitamins

Vitamin A– Also known as beta carotene, is a powerful anti-oxidant that supports sight, bone and teeth growth and tissue repair.  Be sure to reach for the brightly colored fruits and veggies!

  • Carrots
  • Red and Yellow Bell Peppers
  • Watercress
  • Spinach
  • Mango
  • Dried Apricots
  • Tomatoes
  • Green Leafy Vegetables

B Vitamins– Important for using fats and protein as well as energy.  Also key for cell grown and your nervous system. This group is made up of B1-Thiamin, B2-Riboflavin, B3-Niacin, B6-Pyridoxin and B-12 (see below)

  • Mushrooms
  • Nuts
  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Quinoa, Buckwheat, Brown or Wild Rice)
  • Avocado
  • Beansprouts
  • Oranges
  • Bananas
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Green Leafy Veggies (I love Kale)

B12-Used in nerve formation and cell production.  Anemia can result in B12 deficiency.

  • Yeast Extract
  • Gluten-Free Fortified Cereals
  • Gluten-Free Fortified Nut Milks

Vitamin C-Fights infections and heals wounds. An important antioxidant in your everyday lifestyle.  It is important to note that Vitamin C is easily destroyed by heat, light and storage.

  • Broccoli
  • Parsley
  • Potatoes
  • Green Leafy Veggies
  • Oranges
  • Orange Juice
  • Blackcurrants
  • Kiwi
  • Mango

Vitamin D- Our Sunshine…Needed for calcium use.  Helps form healthy bones and teeth.  Met through a few minutes of sunshine on your skin. D2 is animal free.

  • Fortified Gluten-Free Cereals
  • Fortified Nut/Seed Milks
  • Soy Milk

Vitamin E-Antioxidant used to protect against disease.  Helps with tissue healing and skin health.

  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Buckwheat, Brown Rice, Wild Rice, Quinoa)
  • Tomatoes
  • Olive Oil
  • Avocados
  • Carrots
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Apples

Vitamin K– Fights infection Used for energy usage.  Helps with blood clotting and healthy bones.

  • Lentils
  • Peas
  • Lettuce
  • Kombu Sea Vegetables
  • Broccoli
  • Green Leafy Vegetables

Minerals

Iron– Used in production of red blood cells and transportation of oxygen.

  • Dates
  • Figs
  • Tofu
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Figs
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Green Leafy Vegetables
  • Cabbage
  • Pumpkin Seeds

Calcium- Supports teeth, bones and muscles.  Also supports hormones and blood clotting.

  • Almonds
  • Soy Milk
  • Tofu
  • Green Leafy Vegetables
  • broccoli
  • Turnips

Zinc-Important for a strong, healthy immune system and wound healing.

  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Buckwheat, Rice, Quinoa)
  • Almonds
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Lentils
  • Tofu
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Green Leafy Vegetables

Iodine-Important for metabolism and healthy functioning of thyroid gland.  iodine in vegetables depends on the soil.  Seaweeds are the best sources of iodine, especially kelp, which is also known as kombu.

  • Kombu/Kelp Sea Vegetables
  • Green Leafy Vegetables
  • Asparagus

Magnesium– Needed for bone strength, nerve and muscle function.

  • Almonds
  • Cashews
  • Apricots
  • Avocados
  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Soya Beans
  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Quinoa, Rice, Buckwheat)
  • Green Leafy Vegetables

Selenium, Potassium and Phosphorous– Selenium is an antioxidant that fights diseases.  Potassium helps with blood pressure and calcium helps with balance.

  • Tomatoes
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Brazil Nuts
  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Rice, Buckwheat, Quinoa)
  • Chick Peas
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • Many other fruits and vegetables

Trace Elements- Fluorine, Copper, Chromium, Molybdenum and Manganese support bones, teeth, skin, hair and red blood cells. Vital for fighting against diseases.

  • Seaweeds
  • Potatoes
  • Almonds
  • Bananas
  • Gluten-Free Whole Grains (Quinoa, Buckwheat, Brown Rice)
  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Green Leafy Vegetables

And, be sure to check out my Shop…I just added many new gluten-free and vegan products as well as fabulous kitchen tools for all your healthy cooking and baking needs.

Enjoy!

BlogHer Food San Fran … and Gluten Free Black Garlic Risotto Cakes

Words cannot describe the fun-filled 4 days in San Fran for BlogHer Food…I am a true foodie and I had an amazing time back in San Fran for this incredible conference filled with great food, talented foodie bloggies and lots of tasty eats!

San Fran in 5 Words…

Inspirational…

Magical…

Fresh…

Sunny…and Delicious…

Thank you, San Fran … I will be back soon … I assure you … I do travel for good, quality food.

In Other ‘Healthy Apple’ News This Week:

I recently won the Applegate Farms Recipe Contest … I’ll be sure to keep you posted when my winning recipe is published!

I’m also excited to announce that I won the Honorable Mention of the 2010 Angela’s Unique Recipes “Give the Oven a Rest”  Recipe Contest at Angela’s amazing and delicious blog, Amrecipes.

My winning recipe was:

Gluten-Free Black Garlic Risotto Cakes

Ingredients

  • 2 bulbs of black garlic, unpeeled
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 parsnips, finely chopped
  • 2 cups risotto
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • Nori flakes, for topping
  • Olive oil for cooking
  • Almond flour
  • Tomato sauce, for topping

Directions

  • Coat garlic with 1 Tbsp. olive oi; puree in a food processor.
  • Heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add parsnips and onion.  Cook until onion is translucent.  Add risotto and cook an additional 5 minutes.  Add wine and let evaporate.
  • When wine has evaporated completely, add vegetable broth slowly, letting each addition evaporate before adding more.
  • When risotto is fully cooked, remove from heat; add in nutritional yeast, garlic puree, balsamic vinegar and basil.  Season with sea salt and pepper.
  • Transfer into a large bowl; set aside to cool.
  • Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
  • Shape risotto into patties; place onto a baking sheet.
  • Cover and place into the fridge for 1 1/2 hours.  Place almond flour in a dish; coat each cake with flour.
  • Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add risotto cakes and cook until golden brown and cooked through; approximately 4 minutes per side.
  • Transfer patties to a plate lined with paper towels to drain.  Repeat with additional risotto cakes.
  • Serve warm with fresh tomato sauce and a sprinkle of nori flakes.
  • Enjoy!

Have a deliciously enjoyable weekend, foodies…

My Top Veggie Picks…and a Giveaway


Here I am at our local Farmer’s Market right in Rockefeller Center at the heart of Manhattan.  This Farmer’s Market runs Monday thru Fridays during the summer and is a great spot to visit during my lunch break.

Veggies are low in calories and loaded with micronutrients, fiber, minerals, vitamins and phytochemicals…so go ahead and eat them until your heart’s content (exceptions: starches such as white potatoes and corn)…I eat a vast array of the rainbow in unlimited veggies each and everyday.  What’s the secret? Keep your veggies exciting by incorporating them into your morning smoothie, afternoon salad, evening soup and snack time crudites.

Start your breakfast, lunch and dinner with a serving of vegetables such as a large salad or crudites to increase nutrient intake and help control your appetite.

Dark Leafy Greens-

Bursting with Vitamins A, K and C, folate, magnesium, manganese, calcium and fiber.  Health Boosts: May promote eye health thanks to carotenoids (a group of pigments found mainly in green leafy veggies, tomatoes and carrots) and fight cancer.

Bok Choy-

Contains Vitamin C, folate, fiber and Calcium.  Health Boost: May help promote bone health and support immunity.

Brussels Sprouts-

Full of Vitamins A, K and C, manganese, folate, fiber, potassium and Vitamin B6.  Health Boost: Linked to reduce cancer risk, especially colon and breast cancers.

Radishes-

Full of folate, fiber and Vitamin C.  Health Boost: Helps with weight control and may help boost the immune system.

Bean Sprouts-

Soaring with Vitamins C and K, folate, potassium and protein.  Healthy Boost: May boost satiety and assist in weight management.

Red Bell Peppers-

Chock full of Vitamins C, A, B6 and K, fiber, folate and manganese.  Health Boost: May promote heart health.  Vitamin C supports immunity; cartenoids may decrease risk of certain types of cancer.

What are your favorite vegetables and how do you incorporate them into your day?

And Now For My Giveaway:

I’m picking 2 lucky readers to win a package from Element Bars, a website that lets you create your very own bar with the ingredients of your choice.

To Enter: Leave me a comment on this post telling me what kind of Element Bar you would create.  I will pick 2 lucky winners on Friday, August the 20th at 5PM EST.

Good Luck!

And, I’ve got an Element Bars Discount for you too…

You can receive a 15% Off Discount at Elementbars.com by entering the code: EB15 from now thru December 31, 2010.

Enjoy!