Butternut Squash and Fiji Apple Soup

bsquashDuring the winter months I tend to reach for the heavier, richer foods that are more comforting. Now with a 10 week old, time seems to blow by even faster everyday which makes it a little harder to make some of the dishes I so love to make. So I’ve been on a search for something a little more filling but quick and hearty.

So today I threw in some butternut squash and roasted it, in between the laundry, emails, phone calls, and baby feedings. This is what I got! So good! Healthy, hearty, and filling!

Ingredients:

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 2 medium Fiji apples-cored and sliced (save a little for garnish- if ya want)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • sea salt
  • fresh ground pepper
  • Herbs de Provence
  • 1 tsp olive oil

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Peel, core, and seed the squash. In a pan, drizzle olive oil and place squash on top. Cook for about 25 minutes or until it becomes tender
  2. Once it’s tender. Chop squash roughly and add to a high-speed blender. Add sliced apples, coconut milk, salt, pepper, and herbs. Blend well until smooth.
  3. In a dry pan, toast pumpkin seeds on medium heat until they become fragrant and become darker in color. About 2 minutes. Make sure to watch them they will burn quick!
  4. Add soup to a bowl. Top with apples and pumpkin seeds!

Tropical Oatmeal

tropical oatsBrrrr! It’s freezing out! Old man winter is definitely here now! We were spoiled over the past couple months including 70 degree temps on Christmas Eve now it’s 12 degrees without the wind chill and we’ve already had our first snow with more to come this weekend. Usually being only 5 miles from the beach keeps our area a little warmer and the snow away.

Well the one thing we can’t change is the weather so I am offering a tropical getaway with this recipe!!! Escape to the fire-place with your bowl of soaked oats loaded with tropical fruits and it should give you a mini escape to a tropical island! Enjoy!!!

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 C of Raw Oats
  • 2-2.5 C of warmer unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/2 mango-chopped
  • 1/2 C fresh pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 banana-sliced
  • 1/2 pear-sliced
  • 1/2 dragonfruit-sliced
  • 1-2 kiwi-peeled and sliced
  • handful of blueberries
  • 1 Tbsp of unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 Tsp cacao nibs
  • 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon

Directions:

  1. In a bowl add oats and warm coconut milk. Let sit till oats soak up the milk and add a little more if you want it to be a little more creamy and not so dry. Top with cinnamon.
  2. Line the bowl or place in sections all your fruit
  3. In the middle top with coconut flakes and cacao nibs. Dip your spoon in and enjoy!

Protein Packed Superfood Smoothie!

superfoodLooking for a healthier option for dessert for your New Year Resolutions or new diet? How about a pick me up for mid-day or just something protein packed or a little sweeter for breakfast with out all the guilt? Lately the way my days have been going with a busy Pilates studio, a new baby, (now almost 2 months old-where does time go!) 2 other small children, and major to do list, not to mention the unexpected that seems to be popping up on a daily basis! And we actually had our first snow Sunday! I’m not too crazy about it feeling it’s 10 out, but the snow is pretty just this once! ;)

I’ve been craving something mid-day that is satisfying and delicious but won’t leave me feeling guilty and yucky after I eat it. Being a new mom again with a hectic schedule, there’s no time for me at all. If I can brush my teeth alone with out a baby on the hip and someone else trying to take the door off the hinges it’s a good day! So yesterday I started throwing things in the blender that were going to make me feel a little more at ease and a lot more relaxed.

Here’s everything you need for this one and I swear this one will stay in your arsenal for a while! I don’t know if I could get sick of this one! Here’s your yumminess!

Makes about 4 small smoothies

Ingredients:

  • 2.5 cups of unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened sunflower butter
  • 2 Mejool dates-pitted
  • 2 Tbsp Chia seeds
  • 1 Tbsp Caco nibs and a little more for garnish
  • Unsweetened coconut flakes for topping

Directions:

  1. In a high-speed blender add milk, sunflower butter, dates, chia, and cacao nibs and blend until all ingredients are mixed.
  2. Pour into a glass top with nibs and coconut flakes.
  3. Enjoy with you feet up on the couch by the fire! ;)

 

ACAI Bowl- Tropical Fruit with a little Chocolate Punch!

ACAIWell old man winter finally decided to show his face with 19 degrees and flurries on the car this morning. Luckily I’ve got myself hunkered down in the house this morning trying to get something accomplished! Between the remnants of Christmas, a stack of paper work, and a demanding little 6 week old is making it a little harder for this mama to get anything completely accomplished.

So I needed a little pick me up this morning for breakfast! (This will probably be my lunch also as big as I made mine!) Lack of sleep, a busy Pilates studio, and most of the time doing things balancing a baby in one arm and the task in hand in the other is making time management and productivity a little more of a challenge lately.

This recipe great for any time of the day really! Need a mental break, nutritional boost, or a little pick me up to get you going about your day? Grab this recipe! You can change-up the ingredients also for what you already have at home or want to add personally!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 C of ACAI powder or 1 packet of juice
  • 1 1/2 C unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 Kiwi-sliced
  • 1/4 pomegranate seeded
  • 1 Clementine
  • 1/4 Mango- sliced
  • 3 Gooseberries
  • 10 fresh Currants
  • 1 Tbs- hemp seeds
  • 1/2 Tbs- Cacoa nibs
  • Handful cashews
  • Handful macadamia nuts

Directions:

  1. Add ACAI powder or juice and coconut milk to a high-speed blender. Mix Well.
  2. Pour into a shallow bowl
  3. Add pomegranate seeds to middle of the bowl.
  4. Circle the pomegranate with nuts, nibs, and seeds
  5. Fill in and line the bowl with kiwi, mango, clementines, currants, and gooseberries

 

A Holiday “Tini”

holiday tini2Here’s to a New Year!!

Sometimes you just have to celebrate and not worry about every little thing you put in your mouth. This new drink is a little easier on the waistline! So sit back and enjoy, remember the 2015 memories, and look forward to a new year filled with lots of love, light, and laughter. Happy New Year!!

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 oz Top shelf Vodka
  • 1.5 oz Prosecco
  • 1/4 oz Ginger beer
  • splash of gooseberry juice, plus berries for garnish
  • sprig of rosemary
  • 2-3 currants for garnish

Directions:

Using a small martini glass. Pour in vodka, then Prosecco, and ginger beer. Top with rosemary and currants. Add in the splash of gooseberry juice and use the berries for garnish. Sip and enjoy!

New Gardening & Cookbook for Kid’s Released! Plus a Cool Kit to Get Kids in the Kitchen this Holiday Season!

kids gc bookThis one has been on my list for the last year and after a busy summer season with the Pilates and Wellness Studio I have finally found some down time to bang it out and get it done. So I am excited to announce the next book in the Farm Foodie Fitness “Homegrown” series. This is the kids edition!!! Perfect for any age that wants or loves to cook and/or garden!

This book teaches kids to start, maintain, grow a garden, and then harvest what they’ve grown, come back in to the kitchen develop a recipe, prepare, cook and enjoy all their hard work! The book teaches kids to be hands on and aware of where their food comes from, how it’s grown and taken care of, the work that goes into growing food and the importance of eating well. It also teaches them to be able to come into the kitchen and learn how to take those ingredients, prepare and safely cook their harvest, and turn it into a nutritious and healthy meal.

Learning to garden and cook not only teaches a life long skill, it also teaches science, math and measuring, understanding cook and preparation times, the life cycle of a living thing, and how to take care, nurture, and gain responsibility for some thing. As well as learning how to make healthier choices, expand their palates, and become more open-minded to new things and nature.

You can order a copy of my new kids gardening and cookbook at either of these sites! Beach Pilates and Wellness or Farm Foodie Fitness.

Looking for something else fun and hands on to get the kids involved in the kitchen? You have to check out Kidstir!! I love this company! My little guy has gotten a couple kits to try new recipes and fun ways to get involved in the kitchen and they have a great program. You can sign up for a single kit, do one of their monthly plans, or even join for the full year! My little guy gets so excited for his box to come every month and he wants to get in the kitchen more and more every week!! Use this link and save 30% off your new subscription!!! It’s the perfect gift for the holidays!!

 

Brownie Bites!!!!

brownie bites2Chocolate! Chocolate! Kids love it! Even the adults will love them! This recipe will make you feel a little better about giving it to them to the kids, all whole ingredients, no               chemicals or preservatives, and only natural sugar. Super fun to                   make! Double or triple your batch, store them in the freezer for                 later. The kids will love getting their hands sticky and licking their               fingers clean on this one!

 

Makes 18-24 Balls

Ingredients:

  • ½ C macadamia nuts
  • 1 C dates (soaked for 10 minutes)
  • ½ tsp cacao powder (1/2 tsp extra for rolling)
  • Pinch of sea salt (optional)
  • 1 Tsp unsweetened coconut (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a Vitamix or food processor pulse until nuts are still a little chunky, you want mostly powder. Put in a bowl.
  2. Blend soaked dates, add a little of the water they’ve been soaking in if it’s too sticky, should make a paste.
  3. Add cacao and salt, blend again. Scrape into bowl with nuts. Moisten hands with water and roll into balls. Roll into unsweetened cacao and coconut if you’d like!

 

 

Pilates. Why it Should be Apart of Your Workout Routine, No Excuses.

beach picPilates… by now we all know what Pilates is and what it can do for our bodies. Gain coordination, flexibility, balance, core strength, build muscles with resistance and assistance, etc. 10 years ago trying to explain to people what I taught was a huge task, trying to get them to pronounce it correctly was a whole other ball game. :) Flash forward to now, teaching and explaining is definitely a lot easier but occasionally I will get people who have never heard of Pilates or its benefits. Only makes teaching a little more fun and a little more challenging but that’s why instructors teach to see the results they give their clients and students. To watch them grow and develop, to become more confident with their form and bodies, even to become pain-free.

But why should it be apart of everyone’s workout routine? Keep reading to find out! :)

Have you ever watched a baby suck on their toes, or a 5-year-old place their head on their knee effortlessly? How about a ballet dancer or gymnast contort themselves into the most pain-thought provoking positions you’ve ever seen and you still say to yourself I wish I could do that? Or how about an athlete or some one that has a Pilates or even Yoga practice do something as easy as bending from the waist and placing their hands on the flat to the floor without hesitation. (But you think to yourself “yea if I did that I’d rip a hamstring or there is no way that will ever happen! But I still wish I could do it!)  :)

As we age through our life cycle, our bodies continually change from coming down the birth canal to becoming elderly. Each step in our life requires a body fundamental that is continually changing throughout the course of our lives and it goes along with what activities you decide to do from age 5 to age 95.

So lets start from the beginning as a baby and a child you naturally have the flexibility and pretty good balance because you haven’t developed any bad habits yet and your center of gravity is closer to the ground. Go to a child in 4th grade, now for the past 4-5 years you’ve been sitting at a school desk for a good 6 hours a day/ 5 days a week. The muscles that used to be in continual movement have now become stagnant and the muscles begin to shorten and tighten. Next look at a child in high school, now puberty has begun so you’ve added more years of sitting, growth spurts, hormone changes, maybe they’re not as active anymore with sports or activities and sitting more in front of the TV or playing video games. 20’s-40’s most people are driving cars with a lot of travel involved, sitting behind a desk 5-6 days a week, even sitting with computers 15-18 hours a day. The posture has now completely changed, causing us to have tighter hamstrings, low back pain, rounded shoulders, forward head, maybe an injury has caused a complete muscle imbalance throughout the whole body. See the pattern here…

Getting into middle age, we have wear and tear on the joints and muscles, making it more prone to injury, joint replacements, and surgery, menopause for women cause complete body changes from excess body fat and weight gain to muscle and  bone loss, even multiple pregnancies can alter the bodies form as well. As we get older and even more elderly we face the every day challenge of losing our balance, lack of coordination, agility and flexibility go quickly, muscles and bones lose a lot of strength, and then injuries and falls often happen when these things start to fade.

So how does Pilates help from childhood till the day your body just says it’s done? By incorporating Pilates into your weekly routine you can reverse muscle imbalances, poor posture, develop core strength to increase balance and coordination. A strong core keeps you upright and center of gravity level so that you’re less likely to fall. Pilates is low-impact great for people with weakening bone density or osteoporosis because it’s weight-baring (You just have to know your limitations when it comes to having health concerns like osteoporosis. That’s why you always want to have a certified instructor before you jump into a class or sign up for any kind of workout)

Pilates can rehabilitate an injury, prevent injury, and it develops body awareness. Not everyone is built the same or have the same fitness levels. Pilates allows for a range of any limitation, injury, disease, or illness. It was designed for men but women tend to embrace it more. But men can achieve huge goals and levels through out their practice just as easily as women. Pilates can change and improve your abilities of any desired sports, activity, and every day functional movement.

Remember it is a practice, it takes time to reverse imbalances, injuries, improper muscle development. Muscles do have memory, they will go back to where they should but with Pilates it becomes a lifestyle something you have to continue to do, there is no quick fix, but there is change that you can see with in the first 5-10 sessions or classes you begin to take. So ponder the next time you’re the gym thinking about the Pilates class you’ve always wanted to take, or passing the window of the new studio right down the street from your house, don’t worry about the most flexible person in the class and if you’ll ever get to the point of putting your head to your knee again. Focus on feeling better, what goals you want to accomplish, living pain and injury free, as an active healthy person living a long life!

 

 

Watercress, Baby Fennel, Citrus and Apple Salad

fall watercress saladEating well doesn’t have to taste like tree bark or dirt. It’s just a matter of putting together different flavor profiles and experimenting and somethings things will blow you out of the water and then some will leave you tossing your whole plate into the trash or tweaking it a little more to get the perfect dish for you.

I am a “Fall Sunday Chef.” By breakfast I have the Food Network on in the background and then as soon as the clock hits 1:00 pm it’s all about the NFL in the background. I usually go through the kitchen see what I have in there to play with or what I have harvested from the garden for the week that I can cook up and try with new recipes. This helps with not having to cook for the week also. Usually I can get through at least Wednesday night with dinners covered if I plan well on Sundays.

Here is one of my recipes for this week, part from the garden and part I already had in the refrigerator. It’s the perfect way to eat healthy and hearty for the cooler fall months.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups organic watercress
  • 6 bulbs baby fennel chopped in small pieces (I harvested this from the school garden, you can use regular fennel, use the inside pieces for more tender and not so pungent taste)
  • 2 small oranges
  • 2 small apples
  • 12-15 dehydrated cranberries- you can also use dried cranberries try to get ones that haven’t had added sugar to make them sweeter. (use 1/4 cup)
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Dressing:

  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • pinch sea salt
  • pinch fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tbsp fresh orange juice

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl add watercress and baby fennel.
  2. Peel and slice oranges into pieces.
  3. Slice apples add to salad
  4. Top with cranberries
  5. In a dry pan on medium heat, toast pine nuts until slightly brown and fragrant.
  6. Add to top of salad and mix well.

Dressing Directions:

  1. In a  mason jar or old glass container. Add oil, vinegar, orange juice, salt and pepper.
  2. Shake well, pour on top of salad
  3. Toss well and serve!

 

Chocolate Coconut Banana Smoothie

choc coco banI needed a little pick me up mid-day, 3 weeks to go till baby girl shows up and I’ve been tackling the giant to do list like a mad woman, guess it’s the good and bad thing about “the nesting period” of pregnancy. So I threw this little ditty together to give myself a boost to get through more clients and class last evening. Quick and easy this one could be a staple if you need a healthy smoothie mid day.

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 2 Tbsp raw cacao powder
  • 1 tsp organic vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut for garnish
  • 4-5 ice cubes

Directions:

  1. In a Vitmaix or immersion blender, add all ingredients except for shredded coconut.
  2. Blend well. Pour into glass, top with shredded coconut
  3. Enjoy!