Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Oatmeal

Oatmeal with blueberries, banana and cinnamon 
Photo Credit: Jenny 

Oatmeal with strawberries, blueberries, chia seeds, cocoa powder and protein powder
Photo Credit: Jenny 

It's important to start your day with breakfast, so why not fuel your day with something filling, nutrition and packed with fiber and some protein? Oatmeal has so many amazing health benefits and is so tasty!

You can add any healthy combinations with oatmeal as well as unhealthy ones. You do not need brown sugar or sweetener to sweeten up your oatmeal. Rather, adding yogurt and fruit sweetens up the oatmeal just enough. A 1/2 cup of dry rolled oats has 150 calories and five grams of protein. Steel-cut oats has 170 calories per 1/4 cup of uncooked oats. Steel-cut oats also take longer to cook.

Overnight oatmeal:

A popular fad called “overnight oatmeal” also makes your oatmeal delicious and savory but is stored overnight in a closed container. Although I prefer a big, juicy, hot breakfast, you add your oatmeal to a jar with water or milk, then add fruit and a healthy fat such as chia seeds, peanut butter or almonds. Then you store it overnight in the fridge. It still tastes great, and looks beautiful especially in a jar.

Hot Oatmeal: Make your breakfast between 250-450 calories

  1. It is important to cook the oatmeal in a pan or in the microwave, so the oatmeal will puff up. If cooking it on the stove, put the oatmeal into small pan on medium heat for five minutes at least with a little more water than the amount of oatmeal you are cooking with.
  2. Mix flavored protein powder or egg whites and a choice of fruit of ½ banana, strawberries, blueberries, apples, peaches or all.
  3. Mix cinnamon or cocoa powder in with your oatmeal (optional). 
  4. Add dairy (optional). Yogurt goes really well with oatmeal. I commonly use non-fat Greek yogurt.
  5. Add peanut butter, almonds, chia seeds, nut butter or almond butter (optional).

Read more about oatmeal at http://nutritionandmindfulness.blogspot.com

Monday, July 28, 2014

Gingersnaps


My favorite recipe by Alice Walker. All of these cookies are so chewy and they are best eaten right out of the oven!

Makes 60 cookies
Each cookies is about 63 calories
Ingredients: 
  • 1/2 lb unsalted butter (2 sticks) at room temp

  • 1 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1 1/2  teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 
1 egg

  • 1/3 cup of molasses

  • 3 cups of flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt

  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon  of  powdered ginger
Directions: 
  • Cream the butter and sugar together in a mixer. 
  • Add the egg and vanilla. 
  • Add the dry ingredients- flour, salt, cinnamon and powdered ginger. 
  • Add the molasses 
  • Roll the dough into parchment paper. Freeze the dough for as long as you want, but in order to serve the cookies, they should be frozen and then sliced thinly and evenly. 
  • Slice the cookies to be about 1/4 inch thick. Since they were frozen they do not spread out on a baking sheet. 
  • Bake at 350 for ten minutes and top the cookies with some granulated sugar after they are finished. 



Sunday, July 27, 2014

Beijing Baked Breads


This recipe comes from the Mastering the Art of Chinese Cooking by Eileen Yin-Fei Lo. We had these buns last summer. They were a little bit crispy on the outside but soft and chewy in the inside. Make sure to top the buns with black sesame seeds for some decoration. These buns go well alongside meat such as beef or lamb.

Ingredients: 
  • 1 package of dry yeast (1/4 ounce) 
  • 1/3 cup of sugar 
  • 1/2 cup of warm water 
  • 2 1/2 cups of flour 
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder 
  • 1 large egg (lightly beaten) 
  • 7 tablespoons of lard or peanut oil 
For the tops of the buns: 
  • 1 large egg with one tablespoon of water for an egg ssh 
  • 1/4 cup of white or black sesame seeds 
  • 3 tablespoons of scallion oil 
Directions: 
  • Mix the yeast and sugar in warm water in order to dissolve them inside a large bowl. Set the mixture in a warm place for 30 minutes to 1 hour. A brownish foam should appear on the surface. The cooler the outdoor temperature the longer the time. 
  • Add the flour, baking powder, egg and large to the mixture. Stir the mixture and then knead in the bowl for about five minutes. A elastic dough should form. Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and set it in a warm place. The dough should rise for 2 to 4 hours and should triple in size. 
  • Cut sixteen 3 inch squares of wax paper and place the squares in a single layer on a baking sheet. Remove the dough from the bowl and sprinkle it with flour. Knead it for about 10 minutes. 
  • Roll the dough into a log (16 inches long) and then cut it into 1-inch pieces. Form each piece into a ball and place each ball on a waxed-paper square. Let the balls rise, uncovered in a warm place for about 1 hour. They should increase in size by about one third. 
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees farenheit. 
  • Spray each ball with a little bit of warm water, then brush with the egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds. 
  • Bake them for about 15 minutes until the breads become browner. About 7.5 minutes in, rotate the baking sheet front to bake to get an evenness in coloring. 
  • When they are finished remove them from the oven. To keep the breads soft, add some faint flavor, brush them with the scallion oil. They cool quickly and their crust will harden.