Posts tagged ‘easy recipes’

March 10, 2014

Make Your Water Sparkle!

The orange and mint water was tasty!

The orange and mint water was tasty!

Hi, there! It’s Brooke here. You know how important water is for your body, so why is it so hard to hydrate yourself? I struggle with getting my daily amount down as well, but I have found a solution for those of you who may prefer a bit more sparkle and flavor in your water.

Recently, I prepared a Gourmet Water Tasting at Juliette Fowler Communities (where I work) in hopes of encouraging our senior residents to drink more water. March 22 is World Water Awareness Day after all, so I was laying the groundwork. 🙂

water bird

I found 5 recipes for fruit- and herb-infused water for my friends to sample. They were delicious! What I hadn’t accounted for was how gorgeous the fruit and herbs looked in the carafes—jewel tones and freshness all over the place. I kept thinking how pretty a pitcher or two of fruit water would be at my next dinner party. And the prep couldn’t have been easier.

Have fun with your water and play around with your favorite fruits and herbs. Thankfully, there are no rules, except not letting the water sit too long. Here are some easy directions and the recipes I shared with my residents. Maybe you’ll enjoy them too!

Laurie, Liz, and Wanda--love these ladies!

Laurie, Liz, and Wanda–love these ladies!

Supplies

  • 2-qt. or 3-qt. carafe or pitcher
  • Long spoon, spatula, or muddler (potato masher also works!)
  • Fresh water
  • 2-3 c. fresh fruit
  • Small handful herbs, torn or bruised
  • Ice (optional)

Directions

  • Chop or slice 2-3 cups of fresh fruit and place in an empty pitcher.
  • If you are using herbs, tear up a small handful and place in the pitcher with the fruit.
  • Optional—fill pitcher ¾ full of ice.
  • Take long spoon or muddler and press the fruit and herbs so that they can release their flavor—but don’t pulverize them. Just a little mashing is good.
  • Fill the pitcher with fresh water, close the lid, and let sit in the refrigerator for several hours before serving.
  • Don’t prepare fruit water more than a day or two ahead of time. Sometimes the fruit will become bitter or pulpy if allowed to sit too long (especially citrus fruit with rind).

Beautiful and healthy

Recipes for Our Gourmet Tasting

Basic Spa Water with Cucumbers

  • Peel cucumber first, then thinly slice ½-¾ of a cucumber, add to pitcher, and fill with water.

Fruit Extravaganza

  • Rinse all fruit with peel. Slice ½ an orange, add a few slices of lime and lemon, a big handful or two of raspberries, 5-6 strawberries (chopped), a small handful of blackberries. Muddle fruit well. Fill with water.

Watermelon Basil

  • Chop 2 cups watermelon and add to pitcher. Tear up about 5-7 leaves of basil and add to pitcher. Fill with water.

Blackberry Mint

  • Slice 2 cups of blackberries and add to pitcher. Tear up 10 mint leaves and add to pitcher. Muddle blackberries and mint well. Fill with water.

Orange Mint

  • Slice 2 oranges and add to pitcher. Tear up 10 mint leaves and add to pitcher. Muddle oranges and mint well. Fill with water.
More friends: Audrey, Judith, and Hazel--what a crowd!

More friends: Audrey, Judith, and Hazel–what a crowd!

Surprise your friends and family with a special water treat that’s not only beautiful but also healthy. Have a lovely and healthy week!

Brooke

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December 16, 2013

Healthy Holiday Snacking

popcorn

Morning, Friends! It’s Brooke here. ‘Tis the season for decadent holiday delights. This time of year is packed full of parties, gift exchanges, and general festive cheer that usually involve treats of the most delicious kind. But let’s be honest—it’s not just the sugar haze that warms our hearts when we give and receive these treats. We show our love and care for people in our lives by the cooking we do and the food we serve them. But we can also serve tasty morsels that bring a healthy heart, trim body, and joyful energy to those we care about.

A Simple Checklist

When you or your family need a boost between meals, think about this simple checklist as you assemble your snack. It’s not rocket science, so have fun with it!

  • Lean protein (whey or vegan protein powder, hummus, (healthy) bean dip, hard-boiled egg, low-fat Greek or plain yogurt, or edamame)—protein will help fill you up and satisfy your hunger
  • Healthy fat (nuts, seeds, avocado, or nut butter)—healthy fats also satisfy your hunger and keep your brain sharp and skin supple
  • Complex or non-starchy carb (whole grains, green veggies, or fruit)—these carbohydrates will boost your mood and give you clean-burning energy

Nutritious Nibbles

Cashew-Apple-Greenie-on-TheShiksa_com-healthy-green-smoothie-recipe-640x480

Green smoothie or juice + nuts or seeds: Prepare 12-16 oz. of your favorite green drink and then grab 10-15 unsalted almonds, 10-15 walnuts halves, or 24 pistachios. You will feel amazing after this snack—so clean!

Apple and cheese plate: Thinly slice ½ organic apple, ½ organic pear, and 1 oz. hard cheese like Cheddar or Swiss. You can even add some slivered almonds or chopped dried cranberries to dress up this dish.

Grown-up popcorn: Prepare 3 c. air-popped popcorn, and then while popcorn is still hot, sprinkle with your favorite spices:

  • Grated parmesan and cayenne pepper
  • Garlic powder and smoked paprika
  • Dill weed and sea salt
  • Cinnamon and stevia

Sesame carrots and hummus or bean dip: Roll some raw baby carrots in toasted sesame seeds and add a pinch of sea salt. For a pretty contrast, you can even roll the carrots in dill weed or lemon pepper (my fave!). Serve with your favorite hummus or bean dip. If you need a bit more substance to this snack, add some whole-grain or gluten free crackers.

Berries and spiced yogurt: Prepare 1 c. of your favorite winter berries or mix blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries for a gorgeous power snack. Take 1 c. low-fat Greek or plain yogurt and mix in 1 tsp. cinnamon, ½ tsp. nutmeg, ¼ tsp. ground cloves, and if desired, stevia (to taste). You can dip your berries into the yogurt dip or throw everything together in one bowl if you want to get really wild 😉

Five Spice Pistachios

Five-Spice Pistachios

For a really elegant and easy snack, try this killer pistachio recipe. It takes 5 minutes to prepare and about 45 minutes for the pistachios to dry after coming out of the oven. Can cooking be any simpler? My mouth is already watering!

Five-Spice Pistachios

  • 6 Tbsp. orange juice
  • 6 Tbsp. Chinese five-spice powder
  • 4 tsp. sea salt
  • 6 c. unsalted pistachios

Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 250°F.

Whisk orange juice, five-spice powder, and salt in a large bowl. Add pistachios; toss to coat. Divide between 2 large rimmed baking sheets; spread in an even layer.

Bake, stirring every 15 minutes, until dry, about 45 minutes. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe shared from Eating Well: http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/five_spice_pistachios.html

Ok, my friends. I hope you enjoy these ideas for ringing in the merry while keeping your belly nice and trim. If you have a favorite healthy snack recipe, please share: Brooke@healthyhousewives.com. I’m always looking for fabulous ideas to share!!

Blessings and joy,

Brooke