E: My sweet parents visited a few weeks ago. My mom made this side salad which also has jicama and cucumber in it. You’ll see from the picture of my mother that we had the jicama,cucumber next to the salad bowl. We didn’t mix it in because my husband doesn’t like jicama or cucumber. Weirdo. But let me tell you, the jicama was crunchy and sweet. The tomatoes, cilantro and avocado were perfect for the tacos we were eating too. Enjoy.
Ceviche de Mahi Mahi
E: I love having ceviche on hot summer days. All you need are some healthy crackers, and some hot sauce like tapatio and you are good to go. Yum! Aside from the wonderful taste of ceviche, I like making it because it is a meal I can make ahead of time and can be made without dirtying up the stove or pans. It’s a one-pot meal so to speak. The only caveat is that the fish cooks by way of acidity from the lemon so it needs time for the cells to be denatured. The smaller you cut the fish, the quicker it will cook. However, I’m a big fan of ahi-tuna and sushi so I don’t mind the big chunks of fish, and don’t mind if they are slightly undercooked.
E: I highly recommend this smoothie. The burst of tropical fruit early in the morning really wakes you up and encourages you to start your day. Plus, it’s fully loaded with fiber, minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, etc. You will not be disappointed.
Research has shown that mango has antioxidant compounds which have been found to protect against colon, breast, leukemia and prostate cancers. Pineapple is good because it has a lot of fiber. A diet high in fiber helps reduce risk of constipation, heart disease, and possibly cancer. Plus the fiber keeps you full and can help you lose weight. Bananas have high potassium content and they are an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function.
E: It’s Labor Day Weekend! I hope you had the chance to do absolutely nothing. Sam and I went furniture shopping and we picked up a few things for our Kauai trip. I got a cool hat. I did not run or lift weights, and I feel very guilty about it. But at the same time, I don’t remember the last time that I slept in until 10:30 am. I actually woke up after Sam, which rarely happens. Usually I’m back from my run, and have gotten started on breakfast by the time he gets up. Anyways, I’m glad I was able to escape from my work-life and relax on this extended holiday weekend.
I made this frittata in about 15 minutes. I start it off on the stovetop then finish it off in the broiler. It is savory and sweet from the cheese and warm juicy cherry tomatoes. Enjoy it with some coffee and your favorite toast.
Huevos Rancheros – Lite
E: Everyone loves huevos rancheros. I eat a healthier and simpler version though. I substitute sour cream for greek yogurt, leave out the re-fried beans and mexican-rice, use organic eggs, organic corn tortillas, avocado oil, leave out the cheese and top with whatever leftover homemade salsa I have on hand, without preservatives. However, I’ve included the optional add-ons I’ve excluded for the authentic mexican recipe.
Just thinking about it makes me want to go and eat this right now. I just love a perfectly cooked egg with the salsa and guac. So good.
A note on the optional beans: I rarely have time to make beans the correct way: soaking them overnight then boiling them at low temperature with onion, garlic and salt. When I do make beans, I use beans from my parent’s farm in mexico called “flor de mayo.” It’s a light pale and smaller bean. They are also organic and taste great. When I do have freshly boiled beans, they are without a doubt, added to my dish. Except I either don’t fry them, or if I use either avocado oil or coconut-oil, a trick I learned from my sister Sandra. On days when I don’t have freshly boiled beans I use canned organic beans. I usually have canned black or cannellini beans, in stock. Depending on what I’m feeling that day, I’ll just rinse them blend them with water, and heat them up in the microwave with some salt, pepper and cumin.
Broccoli Salad with Sesame Dressing
E: One way to get back on track with your health goals is to make this salad. Broccoli is a superfood. It fights cancer, maintains your metabolism, serves as a detoxifier, is filled with fiber, lowers cholesterol, protects your eyes, it is extremely high in vitamin C, has calcium, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B-6, magnesium, folate, and many more. Studies show eating broccoli decreases obesity, diabetes, heart disease, promotes healthier complexion and hair, increase energy and weight loss. It’s great steamed, roasted, in a soup, raw with yogurt dip.
My mother-in-law gave me this recipe. She made it for a get together once and I fell in love. I love the crunch of the peanuts/ pumpkin seeds and raw broccoli; and the acid from the rice vinegar. I like eating broccoli in a form different than typical steamed with salt and pepper. It’s Sam’s favorite vegetable, specially when I make it with beef- ha!
M: Hi guys! Last weekend Drew and I went over to my parent’s place to discuss our upcoming trip to Mexico, which we are super excited about. Drew and I will get to see what the lifestyle is like in such a small rural farm town. Drew is mostly excited about the food and I’m excited to see my dad’s land.
Anyway, while we were there we ate some of my mom’s tacos and home made salsa. They hit the spot that night and Drew loved the salsa. So this weekend I called mom to ask how she made it. She said it was super simple and that she had only made it with chile Serrano, garlic and guacamole. She said she made it again but added extra ingredients like onion and cilantro but that it turned brown very quickly so she suggested I only use garlic and seasoning.
Skinny Margarita with Mint and Cucumber on the Rocks
Yields: 1 serving
E: Margaritas are the “it” drink at our house. Sam and I went on our first date to Margaritaville in Capitola near Santa Cruz. It might be surprising to say that Sam likes Margaritas more than anyone else I’ve ever met. I read that Margaritas are most popular in the United States, over Mexico. About three years ago Sam and I went to Puerto Vallarta, we went on a tequila tasting tour and got to see how tequila is made. A byproduct of the tequila making process is Mezcal. I’ve seen it become more popular in the past few years. My dad gave Sam a bottle of Mezcal a few years ago because he said it’s an underrated alcohol. For now, I’ll stick to tequila.
Crispy Chicken Fingers
Yields: 6 servings
1 serving: 3-4 pieces
Time: 15 minute marinade: 12 minute cook-time
E: Today is Saturday, and we are having a low-key day. Sam made margaritas last night, and we rented a movie. So we slept-in this morning. I read, did my nails, and went on a light 2 mile-run. When I got back from my run Sam was running errands at the local hardware store. We are currently trying to install a shed. Sam text me that his cousin Mike, who lives around the corner from our place, was going to stop-by. Mike was nearby because he was at the park by our house playing with his daughter. His wife was not with him, she was celebrating an early mother’s day by going antique-shopping with her mom. (That is so cute, by the way.) Mike and lil Gracie couldn’t stay for dinner. It was a shame because Sam has been smoking a leg of lamb since we woke-up. We are having it for dinner. Anyways, I was starving and I figured we could all use some finger food for the short visit. I remembered I had chicken breast thawing in my fridge, so I decided to make these bad boys. I served the chicken fingers with a sriracha-mayo-ketchup mix and a side of ketchup for my picky eater. These are so easy. They are healthier because they are baked, rather tan deep fried. The panko gives it a nice crunchy taste.
Chinese Chicken Salad
yields: 4 generous servings
E: Kudos to me for running on the treadmill today and eating this healthy salad for dinner. I’m trying to be healthier about by physical activity and my eating. Today I even woke up early to make myself a green juice smoothie, and do a 15-minute workout from Women’s Health Magazine. My sister Maggie and I are constantly sending each other our meals throughout the day, and pictures of ourselves at the gym to motivate each other. The same goes for my sister Sandra. Today, naturally, I sent them a picture of this salad. Ha ha. What do you do to ensure you reach your health goals? Perhaps make this salad for dinner tonight? You can’t go wrong.