Blog Posts & Recipes

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October 17, 2019

Last week Brittany Jaroudi gave a wonderful cooking demonstration (and tasting!) on pumpkin recipes. See Plant-Based Pittsburgh recipe page to upload her delicious yet easy recipes for Pumpkin bread, soup, granola, pasta sauce, and mini-pies.

I started to make The Blue Zones Pumpkin & Tahini Soup. However, I opened a can of sweet potato instead of pumpkin and ended up with the following recipe. It's now a staple in my cooking repertoire--very easy and yummy!

PUMPKIN & SWEET POTATO BISQUE (4 Servings)

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves, minced garlic

  • 1 15-oz. can pumpkin puree

  • 1 15-oz. can sweet potato puree

  • ¼ cup tahini

  • 2 cups water (more for thinner soup)

  • 2 tsp. curry powder

  • juice from ½ lime

  • pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Mix all ingredients in pot, stirring until smooth and warm.

  2. Top with wilted kale, micro-greens, or peas.

Look at the lid for Libby's pumpkin--a measure of progress in the plant-based world!

p.s. If you're in the Pittsburgh area and are...

January 11, 2019

Transitioning to a plant-centered diet? Here are 8 steps to make your change less overwhelming and substantially more successful:

  1. Know Your Purpose. Have a clear vision of why you want to make changes. Remind yourself of your purpose for change--you'll be much more likely to follow through with establishing new habits. (My purpose was I really, really didn’t want cancer to return!)

  2. Collaborate. Do you have a family member or friend to shop with, experiment with recipes, bounce ideas off each other, and provide mutual support? A like-minded partner will help you follow through with intentions and make your food journey more enjoyable. And this person will be valuable when you feel uncertainty, want to vent frustrations, or laugh at absurdities.

  3. Start Small. Do not expect to master the full scope of plant-based eating immediately. Begin with a concrete step that you can put into action now. Focus on something that’s practical and meaningful for you. For exam...

September 24, 2018

We know that it's generally healthier and safer to EAT your vitamins and minerals via a multi-colored array of whole plant foods. As John McDougall, MD notes: flooding the body with isolated, concentrated nutrients creates imbalances, increasing the "risk of disease and death." Thus, for years I've been taking only two supplements: B12 and D3.  But, a post by Dr. Michael Greger gave me pause: 

Vitamin B12: The RDA is only 2.4 mcg/day; I've been taking 1,000 mcg, twice weekly, of sublingual methylcobalamin [a natural source of B12]. I was surprised that Greger recommended "at least 2,500 mcg of cyanocobalamin," a synthetic derivative of B12. However, Matt Lederman, MD (who did the "supplements" lecture for my plant-based certification) and Dr. McDougall both recommend methylcobalamin B12. I'm sticking with this form. But, as Greger recommends, I now take B12 every other day and on an empty stomach.

Food sources for B12 include fortified cereals...

May 5, 2018

And, the winner is ...

Marguerite Ednie received a copy of The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who've Lived the Longest for her sweet potato recipe-- so simple yet so satisfying:

EASY SWEET POTATOES

Scrub/wash sweet potatoes. Prick with a fork. 
Bake at 350/375 degrees, 45-60 minutes 'til tender.
Split in half. Mash insides with fork; drizzle with tahini, fresh lemon juice and cracked black pepper

Did you know?

Sweet Potatoes are high in fiber, vitamins A + C, potassium, & folic acid. They're a staple of the traditional Okinawan diet (a Blue Zone). Before World War II (and the onslaught of western diets), Okinawans got a whopping 70% of daily calories from sweet potatoes!

Dan Buettner reports: Okinawans eat purple sweet potatoes, including the leaves--eaten as greens in miso soup. Like other sweet potatoes, they contain anti-oxidants, called sporamin, which possess a variety of potent anti-aging properties.

~ SWEET POTATO DESSERT...

April 5, 2018

I write this on a very blustery "spring" day. In the last 72 hours, we've had snow, rain, sun, hail, wind, cold, wet, & so on. While I wait for some sustained warmth & sun, I share various articles, books, recipes, and news with you.  

First, a wonderful article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Plant-based diet can reverse chronic diseases like diabetes, some cancers, mounting evidence shows. The filling that Judi and I were cooking is actually White Veggie Lasagna filling in Kim Campbell's PlantPure Nation Cookbook, p. 241. We used Engine 2 Sprouted Ancient Grains Tortillas. Before eating, Judi put the assembled wraps in her air fryer -- they were so delicious!! (My husband, who rarely cooks, now wants to buy an air fryer!)

Kim Campbell's White Veggie Lasagna filling:

  • 2 T. minced garlic

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 1/2 c. veggie stock

  • 3 c. fresh spinach

  • 1 c. shredded carrots

  • 1 c. broccoli florets

  • 1 c. chopped fresh toma...

March 13, 2018

Last month's 10-day trip on the Holistic Holiday at Sea was exhilarating, inspiring, and somewhat exhausting! The best part was meeting the many knowledgeable and like-minded people--it was an expansive community of health! Here are my notes from some of the lectures.

Michael Klaper, M.D. His website has free videos on a range of subjects. 

HEALTHY BONES

Osteoporosis:

  • NOT a calcium deficiency, NOT a nutritional disease. Instead, largely a lifestyle disease of atrophy of bones brought on by lack of weight-bearing movement

  • Standard Western diet generates acids and lacks essential nutrients, accelerating bone weakening (i.e. salt, carbonated drinks, stress, animal foods, alcohol, cigarettes, acid-blockers, excessive steroids or thyroid hormones).

  • Can be reversed. Bones are alive; have blood vessels. Osteoblasts create new bone. “Using your bones against gravity stimulates osteoblasts and makes bones stronger.” More use = bigger, stronger...

March 5, 2018

From appetizer to dessert, recipes for a green St. Paddy's meal. Enjoy!

Lucky Leprechaun Dip  by Kathy Patalsky

  • 1 can white cannellini beans (1.5 cups), drain/rinse in hot water

  • 1 c kale (fresh or frozen)

  • 2 T apple cider vinegar

  • 2 tsp lemon juice + pinch lemon zest

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

  • 3 dashes cayenne

  • 1/4 c raw cashews (no need to soak if use high-speed blender)

  • 1 1/2 T Tahini

  • 1/4+ c warm water

  • 1/4 c chopped parsley, flat leaf

  • optional: garlic powder or roasted garlic

In high-speed blender, blend all ingredients from low to high, until silky & smooth. If needed, add a few splashes of water to blend smooth. (It will firm up in the fridge.)

Pour in serving dish; chill in fridge for 1 hour or overnight. Decorate with parsley.

Irish White Bean and Cabbage Stew by FatFree Vegan Kitchen

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 3 ribs celery, chopped

  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/2 head cabbage, chopped

  • 4 ca...

February 1, 2018

In time for Valentine's Day ...

RAW CHOCO BITES(from Naked Food Magazine, p. 93 of my book)  

  • 1 carrot

  • 3 figs + 3 dates or 6 dates

  • 1 banana

  • ½ c rolled oats

  • 2 tsp raw cacao

  • shredded coconut (optional)

Chop carrot in large pieces. In blender or food processor, mix carrots and dates/figs for 10-15 seconds, until minced. Set aside. In large bowl, add banana & oats; mash with fork or bare hands. Add carrot mixture & raw cacao. Blend until mixture is uniform. Shape into 1" round bites. Pour coconut in small bowl; roll each bite until covered.

From Linda Jones

EASY COOKIES

  • 3 bananas

  • 1 c dates

  • 2 c oats

  • ⅓ c applesauce

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Combine banana & dates in food processor. Add other ingredients. Let sit 15 min. Drop by tbsp's on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 15-20 min. @ 350.  Options: replace dates with raisins or apricots; add peanut butter, chocolate chips, or nuts.

CHOCOLATE CHIA P...

January 8, 2018

This past week has been bitterly cold, which leads me to warm, comforting soups--as well as something sweet and chocolaty. 

Chunky Veggie Soup by Arlene Holtz (p. 84 of my book).

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • ½” fresh ginger, peeled/minced

  • 1 tbsp cumin

  • 1 tsp turmeric

  • ½ tsp coriander

  • salt/pepper to taste

  • 3 large carrots, chopped

  • 3 celery ribs, chopped

  • ½ head red cabbage, cut in chunks

  • 3-4 potatoes, diced

  • 6 c vegetable broth

In large saucepan, sauté onions, garlic, ginger in water or broth until partially cooked. Add cumin, turmeric, coriander. Add salt/pepper. Add carrots, celery, cabbage; sauté briefly. Add potatoes and broth. Bring to boil; simmer on low until vegetables are cooked (about 30 min.). Adjust spices to taste. 

Curried Squash and Apple Soup from Forks Over Knives: The Cookbook, p. 98. This is my new "favorite soup." I made it chunky and thick. For me, it has just the right amount of sp...

December 7, 2017

Hanukkah starts Dec. 12, with Christmas 12 days later! Here are some recipes to get you in the mood -- from soup to dessert. Enjoy!!

This is my type of recipe--easy yet so good!

Pumpkin Bisque (serves 4-6) by Chad Sarno

  • 1 1/2 c. diced white onions

  • 2 T. broth or water

  • 2 c. canned pumpkin

  • 5 cloves roasted garlic

  • 3 c. vegetable stock

  • 1 1/2 T. maple syrup

  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne

  • 1/4 c. sherry wine

  • ground black pepper, to taste

  • 1/4 c. toasted pumpkin seeds (optional)

In broth/water, sauté onions on medium heat until translucent. Blend pumpkin, garlic, onions, + next 7 ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth. Transfer to pot over low-medium heat. Serve warm with garnish of toasted pumpkin seeds.

Naked Food Magazine has delicious-looking and delicious-tasting recipes. Here's a simple but elegant salad from April 2013:

Quinoa Pear Pecan Salad

  • 1 c. quinoa, rinsed

  • 1 pear, sliced thin

  • 1 c. spinach, washed

  • ½...

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Pittsburgh, PA

USA

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