• Self-care begins with gratitude

    When Annette brought up writing an article on self-care, my mind immediately went to the word gratitude. In my eyes, one of the best forms of self-love and care is to take a moment out of your day to give thanks for what you already have. It is a practice that reminds you to think about the positive things in your life. I find that it also helps to give me a sense of purpose. Having daily gratitude practices can significantly improve one’s mental health. And that is what self-care is all about!             I popped on to PubMed and decided to search the word “gratitude” because I was curious…

  • Z is for Zucchini

    We made it!  Food Fun from A to Z!  Zucchini has been in the spotlight lately. We’ve seen everything from zucchini noodles to zucchini fries to zucchini chips. This green veggie is a good source of fiber and vitamin C. Zucchini is a versatile vegetable with a mild flavor that can play a part in a variety of dishes. You can:  -Add chopped zucchini to soups or stews -Include chopped zucchini to your spaghetti sauce along with peppers and onions. -Add shredded zucchini to your burgers and meatloaf Of course, you can always keep it simple with a side dish of sautéed zucchini.

  • Y is for Yogurt

    Yogurt is a fermented dairy product and a great source of probiotics, protein, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and B vitamins. Yogurt is a very ancient product, so it is unknown when it was first made. However, it is believed that milk products as a whole were incorporated into the human diet as early as 10,000 BC, when milk producing animals started to be domesticated. A fun fact about yogurt is that the word “yogurt” comes from the Turkish word “yoğurmak” which means to thicken, coagulate or curdle. Yogurt used to be used to cure a variety of symptoms and illnesses such as, diarrhea or cramps. I love yogurt because it tastes…

  • X is for Xigua

    Let’s be real. Foods that begin with the letter X are few. We were forced to broaden our search beyond the English language.  Xigua, pronounced She-gwah, is Mandarin for watermelon. Below is a yummy watermelon salsa recipe. Watermelon and salsa are not two foods you would normally put together, but that is why this series is all about “food fun”. Try it. You will not regret it.

  • W is for Waffles

    The National Museum of American History’s Domestic Life collection houses waffle irons from the early 18th century through the mid-20th century. Waffle making started in America with the Dutch colonists in the 1620s. However, the first waffle at The National Museum of American History’s Domestic Life is from the 18th century and is formed by two hinged plates at the end of long handles. The collection also features a waffle iron from the 1920s that was offered in a set of kitchenware. During this time, waffle irons were used at the kitchen table and offered with most kitchen sets. International Waffle Day is August 24th. This day is significant because…

  • V is for Vanilla

    It is hard to believe such great flavor comes from these tiny little vanilla beans.  Watch this video to learn the long journey of the vanilla bean from plant to plate.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQl-oHeII6w As we are approaching the end of the alphabet, we thought everyone would want to enjoy a nice cup of coffee after all these yummy foods from A to V (so far).  Below is a recipe from Taste of Home for homemade vanilla coffee creamer.

  • U is for Udon

    Udon is a thick noodle made from wheat flour.  You will often find it on the menu at Japanese restaurants. Udon noodles are a flexible stable. They can be quick and simple served in a yummy broth with some leftover chicken and veggies. If you are feeling fancy, you can check out some of the Udon recipes from Allrecipes.com here. http://dish.allrecipes.com/quick-weeknight-meals-starring-udon-noodles/ Our favorite is the Kimchi Udon Noodle Stir-Fry below. You can use store bought kimchi or make your own. Check out K is for Kimchi for the recipe.

  • T is for Tofu

    Trying Tofu for the First Time: A Food Adventure One of the best aspects, though sometimes difficult, of getting married is finally having to cook for oneself and one’s partner. I joyfully took on this task almost four years ago. Now, one of my favorite hobbies is searching for new recipes. Over time, I have become increasingly adventurous in the types of new foods I am willing to try. I had wanted to cook with tofu for a very long time. There are many reasons why, but the primary one has been to increase the sustainability of my diet. Even one meatless day a week can help reduce your carbon…

  • S is for Salmon

    Did you know salmon is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids? Omega 3 fats are considered essential meaning your body cannot make them so they must come from the foods you eat. The Omega 3 fatty acids EPA and DHA have been linked with several health benefits including decreasing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, improving the function of cells that line your arteries and lowering the risk of heart arrhythmias. Fresh salmon has a very short shelf life. When picking out fresh fish it is important to get it as fresh as possible. If the fish is already filleted, the fish should be a bright shade of red-coral…

  • R is for Raspberries

    Although they are small, raspberries contain a ton of vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C is one of the most abundant vitamins in raspberries. Vitamin C is an essential dietary component and needs to be consumed through diet. Vitamin C plays an important role in a number of functions including protein metabolism, production of collagen and many more things. Raspberries also contain folate, vitamin B1, potassium and many other nutrients.  Ever notice that your raspberries spoil quickly? Next time you buy raspberries hold off on washing them. Washing raspberries makes them more prone to spoiling. Also place the raspberries in the fridge to help slow down the spoiling process.   With a…