by ninaeliseh | Oct 19, 2015 | Blog, Meals, Recipes, Sides & Misc
Ever since I got back from Europe, I have been wanting to re-create a recipe for a soup that I had while in Chamonix, France: Beet Soup. It sounds gross, but it wasn’t ALL beets – it was potatoes, and shallots, and red wine vinegar… and it was sweet and salty and just amazing. So, I decided to make the recipe tonight – anddddd it didn’t exactly turn out the way that I wanted it to… BUT. It was still amazing! My beet soup recipe ended up turning more into a root veggie soup – with only a hint of beets. Also, the color should have been straight up the color of beets, but it turned out orange. I will definitely be tweaking this and trying again another time (less potatoes, more beets). So for the time being – enjoy my not-as-planned soup below for a perfect fall meal!
Sweet & Creamy Root Vegetable Soup
- 1 Potato, chopped into cubes
- 1 Sweet Potato (chopped into cubes)
- 2 carrot stalks (chopped)
- 4 cooked beets (I cheated and bought pre-cooked ones from Trader Joes)
- 1 shallot
- butter (or ghee)
- 1 can coconut milk (full or light)
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 baby leaf
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 cups broth (I used vegetable, you could use chicken)
- garlic powder to taste
- sugar to taste (optional – I used coconut sugar, you could also use dates)
Cook shallots & garlic in butter until they start to brown (I cooked in a large cast-iron skillet). Add in broth, potatoes & carrots. Place a lid on top of skillet & let cook until vegetables/potatoes are soft. Remove the bay leaf. Transfer entire mixture into a blender/processor, adding the rest of the ingredients. *I recommend adding the spices at the very end, a little at the time, to find the perfect blend
Mix for a few seconds at a time – or fully mix – depending on how you want your soup, creamy or with a few veggie chunks.
Serve with a side (I was roasting chopped brussel sprouts and carrots while making this, so just topped my soup with them!) or some bread. Enjoy!
by ninaeliseh | Sep 1, 2015 | Blog, fitness, Health & Fitness, life, Lifestyle, Recipes, Snacks
To prep for my upcoming trip to Europe, I’ve been stashing up on snacks and protein bars to bring with me. For the days that I will be walking around a lot, working out, unable to find food right away, I need snacks on hand to tide me over. Insert: Exo Protein Bars! For those of you who are a little more adventurous, these bars are made out of cricket protein powder. Yep, you read that right. Crickets.
Now before you stop reading and swear on your dead body that you would NEVER eat a bug, let me drop a little knowledge on you about the greatness of these bars:
- the percentage of protein used in these bars is almost 2-6 times more than any other protein source
- crickets are a complete protein source
- crickets produce 100x less greenhouse gases than cows
- raising crickets is dramatically less harmful than raising traditional livestock – see the info chart below!
So are you sold on trying them yet? If not, below is my own personal review – and let me tell you, I was a bit freaked out at first to eat bugs 😉
Exo sent me 4 bars to try:
Peanut Butter & Jelly
I originally thought blueberry would be my favorite – however, the Peanut Butter & Jelly and the Cocoa nut ended up being my favorite! The blueberry & Apple cinnamon bars tasted a little earthy – I liked that the other 2 bars had a more prominent flavor. When I first tried these bars, I was definitely thinking a few things: OMG. I am eating crickets. Are these going to be crunchy? OMG this is gross.
After taking a few bites, I realized that it wasn’t so bad. The crickets are washed, dried to remove the moisture, then milled into fine flour. The result is slightly nutty-tasting flour that is high in protein and micronutrients (source). I think the only issue with these bars is the mental hurdle – the fact that you are eating bugs. If someone handed me this bar without telling me it was made with crickets, I would have thought it was just a tasty protein bar. And – if you need any more convincing – a few of my girlfriends tried these bars with me, and they gave a thumbs up!
So – after reading my reviews, I know you all are just itching to try these bars… especially you adventurous, paleo, backpacking, planet-saving people of the earth! Exo has 1 box of PB&J bars to give away to one lucky winner. All you have to do is 1) 1) Follow my blog and 2) tell me why you want to try these bars! Enter at the link below, and leave your response in the comments below. Rafflecop will randomly choose a winner by the end of Monday, 9/7 @ 11:59 pm ET. I can’t wait to read everyone’s response!
**This contest is now closed… The winner is Linda R! Congrats!
Click here to be entered into the EXO Protein Bar Giveaway!
**The product provided for the review was free of charge from the company. The product offered for the giveaway is free of charge, no purchase necessary. My opinions are my own and were not influenced by any form of compensation.
by ninaeliseh | Aug 30, 2015 | Blog, Meals, Recipes, Sides & Misc
Do you ever go into a a grocery store (or any store) and end up filling your cart with shit you didn’t go in for? Well, that happened to me today. I ended up filling my cart at Giant Eagle, then headed for the checkout lane before I realized I had nothing in my cart that I had walked in the store to buy. You see, I walked in and saw the fresh produce section, and a recipe began to materialize into my brain. So, naturally I started running around, talking to myself (it’s an embarrassing habit I’m trying to break – but really, I can’t be the only one who does this??) and figuring out what ingredients would work best for this amazing new recipe I was going to create. And guess what – it was. I ended up making the best meal of my life. Not trying to toot my horn or anything, but I made the world’s best salad & burger (burger recipe inspired/adapted by popular paleo) to go with it. I kept finding random ingredients at the store to add to this recipe, so really, you can thank my ADHD for kicking in to create this awesomeness!
Oh – and this meal is completely Paleo/whole30 approved – minus the bun (I used UDI’s gluten free buns, if you are into that kinda stuff) & cheese, both of which are very optional. So… eat this with a very clear conscience. You are welcome.
Hickory Smoked Sea Salt Mocha Burgers (makes 4-6 burgers)
recipe adapted from Popular Paleo
- 1-1.5 lbs ground beef
- 1/2 tsp hickory liquid smoke (popular paleo uses ancho cile powder)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp chopped garlic
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3/4 cup cold brew coffee (i used trader joes, but you could just use leftover coffee)
- 1 tbsp oil (I used olive)
- 1 tsp cocoa/cacao powder
- Optional: Mayo (I used kensington Mayo)
- Optional: hamburger buns or lettuce
- Optional: Gouda Cheese
Combine liquid smoke with salt, garlic, 2 tbsp olive oil & ground beef (**Olive oil is optional – I add this to make the burgers extra soft so they don’t get chewy when cooked.. it’s like biting into butter, trust me on this). Form into patties – I had about 1.11 lbs of ground beef and made 5 patties. Pour cold coffee brew over patties – let them soak for 10-30 minutes on one side, then flip and let soak for 10-30 minutes on the other side (I was preparing my salad and ended up letting the meat marinate in the coffee for about an hour).
That time I walked into the Grocery store for baby wipes & potatoes and came out with 100$ + more groceries….
While the meat is marinating, combine the cacao powder and olive oil & mix until there are no more clumps. Dump in the cold brew that was marinating your burgers and mix all together. Place your burgers in a skillet (or pan, or grill, however you want to cook them), pouring the marinade over top. Cook the burgers to your liking (I like medium rare!) and remove from pan when finished. Cook Bacon in left over coffee/cacao sauce. Place burger on bun or bed of lettuce. Top with gouda cheese, bacon & mayo. Enjoy!
Patties cooking in the marinade
Optional: Kensington Mayo
Fresh Kale & Chard Salad
Ingredients for salad:
- 1 bunch of rainbow chard
- 1/2 bunch kale
- 1/2 rutabaga, peeled
- 1 beet
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 avocado
- optional: grated cheese (I used manchego)
Ingredients for dressing:
- juice of 1 lemon
- juice of 1/4 grapefruit
- 1/2 tsp garlic
- 3 tbsp oil (i used olive)
- 2 tbsp balsamic (or white balsamic) vinegar
- 2 tbsp white wine (optional)
- salt & pepper to taste
- Chop all salad ingredients up and place into a bowl. Mix all dressing ingredients together, and toss with salad. Serve topped with shaved cheese (optional).
Plate all ingredients and enjoy! Please note that the potatoes were a bit of an afterthought – i just roasted in a skillet with butter until cooked and topped with salt. Totally optional!
by ninaeliseh | May 26, 2015 | fitness, Health & Fitness, life, Recipes, Snacks
I apologize for the delay… Catching up from being out of the country last week!
The winner of the RX Bar giveaway is… Jordan D! You are the winner of an RX bar sample 10 pack of all 5 flavors! Congrats! RX bar will be contacting you via email to gather your information. Enjoy your bars!
To everyone else who entered the giveaway – THANK YOU!! I love hearing from my readers and connecting with others who share a love of eating yummy food! Also – its pretty cool that it’s not just my mom that reads my blog 😉 (love you mom!)
Thanks again for participating in my first every giveaway… more to come in the next few months!
by ninaeliseh | May 14, 2015 | Adventures, Blog, fitness, Health & Fitness, Travel Tips, Yoga
Hi all! With my trip quickly approaching, I have been packing and planning like a madwoman. I decided to check in 1 small bag + bring 1 carry on, trying to keep my packing as light as possible. One of the worst things about traveling is having to minimize the crap that you bring, but also good practice for learning to survive on a few essential items.
With that being said, I created a list of items that any yogi needs while traveling – whether it be for a trip to the arctic or while sitting on a sunny beach in the Caribbean 🙂
Lavender & Peppermint Oil
- Lavender oil is like the swiss army knife of nature. It helps with sunburns, bug bites, cuts, anything skin related, sleep problems… etc. It is my go-to for relaxing, especially for long flights & helping to fall asleep in new places.
- Peppermint oil is a stomach lifesaver – nausea, indigestion, stomach aches… And not only that, I use this for headaches & my sinuses (have you ever tried smelling peppermint with a stuffy nose? Opens up those airways within seconds!)l. I carry this in my purse at all times – my friends always end up using it when they aren’t feeling well!
Protein Bars & Snacks I am the worlds worst eater – I snack. A LOT. Because of my snacking “problem,” I have tried pretty much every single on-the-go food ever to be created by man. Since my schedule is usually packed from 6 in the morning until 11 at night every day, I always need to have something on hand when I am on the go. You can find any snack with protein, chocolate, or peanut butter in it stashed away in my car, my purse, or my desk at work at all times! A few of my favorite snacks are RX Bars, Kind Strong! Bars, Picky Bars (amazing for post-workout), and chocolate cacao nibs from trader joes.
Electrolyte Drink Mix When I travel, I find its hard to drink a lot of water. Not just because I forget, but also because who doesn’t like to get the occasional airport drink?! It’s easy to get dehydrated – airport travel fatigue is no joke! I’ve tried Nuun Tablets in the past, but my all-time favorite is Mestrength Electrolyte Drink Mix. It doesn’t have any extra ingredients in it + uses stevia as a sweetener. It also has creatine in it, which is amazing for drinking pre- and post-workout. I am banking on these to keep me hydrated doing 2 Yoga classes a day in the Belize heat!
Baby Wipes These are essential for ANY traveler – the perfect all-purpose body cleaner for those on the go! I use these to clean my face, wipe down my body (hello – no access to a shower while traveling all day=uncomfortably sitting in your own sweat/grime/dirt), cleaning hands, unexpected spills… total lifesaver. Any brand will work – I normally just grab some from my local CVS or meijer. Aquaphor I first found out about aquaphor when I got my first tattoo. Fast forward 9 years, 2 more tattoos, dry skin, and some seriously chapped lips and I am still using this stuff. All you need is a tiny travel-sized bottle – it lasts forever! I carry one with me at all times.
Yoga Mat* Every Yogi needs a mat to bring with them on their travels! Unfortunately, most mats are super bulky and difficult to carry around. Insert: Yoga mat created specifically for the traveling Yogi! B Yoga has designed the PERFECT mat to travel with… It’s super thin, non-slip, and light enough to carry around without being too heavy. I am planning on taking this on the plane with me so that I can do some pop-up yoga in the airports 🙂
There are a lot more things I pack, but these items are what I take with me on my carry-on. What does everyone else take as a travel essential? I’d love to hear what you take on your trips!
*B Yoga provided me with a travellers mat to use while traveling to my teacher training in Belize.