Vegan Vanilla Biscotti

February 27, 2013

Vegan Vanilla Biscotti

This biscotti is what I like to think of as a Hole in One recipe. I know, golf jargon. There’s a valid justification for this though. You see, sometimes it takes several tries to come up with the recipe you’d hope for. But with these vegan vanilla biscotti? I got exactly what I wanted on the very first try. That’s why the use of the “Hole in One” expression seems appropriate. Golf jargon is justified.
Other times I’ve perfected a recipe only after so many attempts that I would have to define it as Batting Cage kind of recipe. You try, and try, and try and just when you're about to give up, something good comes out.

Vegan Vanilla Biscotti

Greek Style Quinoa Patties With Tzatziki Sauce

February 24, 2013

Greek Style Quinoa Patties With Tzatziki Sauce
I was waiting for the right time to experiment a new version of my “award-winning” quinoa patties. The NBA All-Star game provided the right excuse. I invited some of my friends over Sunday night to watch it and served these Greek style quinoa patties as finger-food. By the time the dunk-contest was on, there were none left.
If you think that game night is all about chicken wings, ribs and pizza you might want to think again.
The patties were epic. The tzatziki sauce the perfect companion.
Solid entertainment and good food is always a recipe for success.

Cauliflower Crust Pizza Marinara

February 19, 2013

Paleo Pizza Marinara

There are many things I love about President’s Day. First of all, it is perhaps arguably the only Federal holiday free of convention. It arrives without any tradition attached to it: no fireworks, no barbecue, no parade, no turkey. There’s no pressure whatsoever to spend the day in a certain predetermined or, worst, prepackaged fashion.
Some may argue that this is the reason why it’s confusing: no ritual to follow, no fun.
Are you kidding me? Seriously, are you freaking kidding me?
You got 24 hours of free time that you can devote to yourself, and instead you’re rumbling in discontent about it?
Let me tell some of the things you can do with your free time.
First off, you can revise some facts about American history. It’s President day after all so let’s put it to good use. There are many fun anecdotes about Pres. Washington or Lincoln never mentioned during your high school history class but worth knowing.
You can also workout. Always a wise thing to do.
Finally, you can cook something healthy and delicious.
As for myself I did all of these three things. I studied, trained and cooked.
The most relevant activity was the latter. I baked my first ever paleo pizza. Now, that was quite something.
I wasn’t sure at all at the beginning but I have to admit that what came out of the oven was a straight passport to pizza-heaven. So surprisingly good.

Paleo Pizza Marinana

One Simple Eating Rule

February 18, 2013

This is rule #19 in Michael Pollan’s book “
Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual”. One of my favorites.
It stresses out the importance of eating real food, not creations of the food-industrial complex. Real food doesn’t have a long ingredient list, isn’t advertised on national television, and doesn’t contain stuff you can’t even pronounce the name.
Part of being healthy means consciously choosing wisely what you put in your mouth. So do eat food that comes from plants not that is made in plants!

Coconut Oil: Good Or Bad?

Some readers have expressed concern over the use of coconut oil as fat component in few of the vegan recipes I’ve posted on the blog.
I was not surprised by these reactions, as coconut oil still pays the price of decades of unsubstantiated misinformation that has led to the popular belief that it’s one of the unhealthiest oils around. Jam-packed with “evil” saturated fats, causing artery-clogging, cholesterol-raising, and heart-attacks; almost poisonous for the human body.
Truth of the matter, coconut oil is not the Lex Luthor of fats portrayed. Recent studies point in the opposite direction; backtracking on the worst accusation against it and claiming that, after all, it might belong with the good guys.
Vegans, excited of this new found evidence, have made coconut oil a staple food in their diet. Relying on it as a sweet vegetable fat that is solid at room temperature and that - just like butter - can create sumptuous batters, flaky pie crusts and chewy cookies.
Even if coconut oil is enjoying a sparkly new makeover, the doubt still remain: coconut oil, friend or foe?

Virgin Coconut Oil

Suggested Reading: Folks, This Ain't Normal

February 13, 2013

I was drawn to this this book by its cover, which is so not how you should pick books, but there you have it.
I liked the image of the hen next to the big egg wrapping the quote “Folks This Ain’t Normal”, followed by the claim “A Farmer's Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World
A hen, an egg, a farmer, happier people and a better world? I was totally sold.
The author’s name - Joel Salatin - didn’t ring a bell, but It didn’t matter.
After a matter of minutes, I was already flipping to the first page during my subway ride home.
The thing that surprised me as I was reading it, is that the cover is the least awesome thing about this book. I literally devoured the pages in a couple of days.

Vegan Pumpkin Cinnamon Snails

February 9, 2013

Vegan Pumpkin Cinnamon Snails
If someone were to lend me a time machine and ask me to do whatever I want with it; the coordinates I’d start with would be 17th century Sweden.
There I would search for the baker who invented cinnamon rolls. Just to give him a very big hug and thank him for creating one of the most delicious things ever. Ha! What an odd encounter that would be.
Wait, I know what you’re thinking. With all the things you can do with a time machine, you would do that?
First of all, it’s well settled that I’m a tri-weirdo. Secondly, with your time machine you can do whatever you want. Personally, I would embark into the awesome cinnamon roll quest.
If by any chance we would meet afterwards and compare time machine stories; I’m fairly certain that my story would beat up your story.

Pumpkin in all its beauty

Tomato and Fava Soup

February 7, 2013

Tomato and Fava Soup
This is my sis all-time favorite soup. So when I invited her over for lunch last week to celebrate her birthday I already knew what I had to cook.
Don’t change a winning plan. That’s the rule, right?
Plus I know for a fact that she’s never going to cook it for herself. Partly because her cooking skills are on the scanty side. Partly because she’s a slacker when there’s a stove involved. Partly because she doesn’t have the time (you know, kids + work). Mostly because she knows that every now and then I will cook it for her.
That’s the kind of awesome brother I am. Cooking for the sis. I think I deserve a medal.

Let's Talk About Intermittent Fasting

February 6, 2013

Intermittent fasting (IF) is a topic that I find fascinating. The more I read about it, the more I want to know.
Chances are that you have already heard about IF. The hype has been booming recently. But don’t think of it as a new "it" thing; in fact the first study on IF dates back to 1943.
The growing interest is due to new found evidence suggesting that IF can bring many health benefits, including a potential increase in human lifespan.
Intermittent Fasting

Green Quinoa Salad

February 4, 2013

Green Quinoa Salad

This is a very loose interpretation of a salad I had a while ago at Siggy’s Good Food restaurant in Brooklyn. It’s called quinoa Greek Style Quinoa & Avocado Salad. It's packed with Kalamata olives, cucumber, avocado and served with a Greek yogurt dressing.
I wanted to make it at home the other day but didn’t had some (well, almost all) of the necessary ingredients. Thus I had no other option but to create my own version.
Green Quinoa Salad

The Virtuous Cycle

February 1, 2013

Healthy Living

Wellness is the choice of assuming responsibility for the quality of your life. It starts with the conscious decision to shape a healthy living and to keep at it. Being healthy is a continuum. You’re either healthy or you’re not.
The good news is that once you start being healthy it’s very unlikely that you’re going back.
Leading a healthy lifestyle is a virtuous cycle.
Make the first step, and you’ll generate a success leading to another success which will generate still more successes in a chain of events that reinforces itself through a positive feedback loop.
So start, don’t give up, and most importantly do not let any slips get you down!