Food Time – A Many Mushroom Risotto

I don’t know if you knew this about me but I LOVE mushrooms. I think they are one of the greatest things out there, cooked, raw, mashed into a paste anyway you can think it up I want to eat them. So a couple of weeks ago during a meal prep day I decided to make some delicious Many Mushroom Risotto, and it was so tasty!   Just for the fun of it I made this one vegan and trust you don’t lose any of the delicious creaminess or flavour you would get had I used butter and cheese, plus it cuts the fat/calorie content so it ends up being a super healthy meal.

Enough talk, I am sure you are all salivating so here is the recipe, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

Many Mushroom Risotto:

Serves 8-10 as a main meal

mushroom risotto1.5 cups Arborio rice
2 tbsp oil (I used grape seed oil it’s better for frying)
4 cups Vegetable stock (I use homemade, but if you need to get store bough get organic)
1 small Yellow Onion, diced
3 cloves Garlic, finely chopped
3 Leeks, white and light green parts chopped
1 Tbsp fresh Lemon Juice
4 sprigs of Thyme, finely chopped
1 Portobello Mushroom, diced
*4oz (250g) Cremini Mushrooms, diced
*4oz (250g) Oyster Mushrooms, diced
Salt and Pepper to taste

1. Prepare all ingredients so that you can easily toss them in, a lot of stirring is involved and you don’t want to let your risotto burn because something wasn’t already chopped up.

2. Heat half the oil in a large skillet or stew pot.  Once oil heats up add in all of your mushrooms, cook them down until they are soft 5-7 minutes.  Once cooked remove and set aside.

3. Add other half of oil to pan and heat, once heated add in leeks, onions and garlic cook for 2-5 minutes until the onions become soft and translucent.

4. Add in arborio rice stir in dry rice for about a minute to coat with all the juices that are going on in the pan.  Add in 1 tbsp of lemon juice, stir until evaporated.

5. Add 1/2 cup of broth to the rice mixture and stir until completely absorbed, then add in another 1/2 cup of broth.  Continue this until all of the broth is gone, stirring constantly. This should take 20-25 minutes and is a great arm workout, for one arm at least.

6. Once all broth is added into the mixture add the cooked mushrooms, fresh thyme and salt and pepper to taste. Stir until well combined and serve immediately.

*these sizes are just one prepackaged container of mushrooms, also if you want to add more go for it, it will be super delicious!

Let me know what you think of this recipe.   I hope to be back blogging on a regular basis shortly.  School is starting to calm down (not really but I keep telling myself this) and my work and life schedule is starting to actually find a nice balance.  I hope to bring you more updates, workouts, yoga routines and recipes soon.

Happy Thursday everyone!

Gingersneezes Turns 3

Turns out today is Gingersneezes Birthday!   She is turning 3 years old today, and although over the past 8ish months the site has gone a little dead I do still check in and am always sure to post on our Facebook Page, Twitter and the Instagram account. So if you are going through kitten withdrawals or missing delicious food posts or motivational quotes head on over to one of those three spaces to stay connected.

originalIn the mean time have some fun traveling down memory lane with some delicious posts:

Salmon Risotto – an all time favorite of mine!
PB&J Cups – who could resist these tasty treats!

Pineapple Surprise – if juicing it is more your style try out this super tasty juice, it is great as a breakfast.

And after you have snacked on the above maybe testing out some good old workouts if you have yet to have the chance:

Try this killer ab workout to build strength to your core, or perhaps firming up your legs is more your style. If so try this awesome leg circuit out, it will have your legs feeling like jelly in no time.

 

Back Again – Recap

I have been dormant for a while and for that I apologize but I am back and trying to get back into the swing of blogging. The school year had been coming to a close which meant lots of reading and writing and studying. Now after a week of recovery and relaxation I am back to give you all a fun recap of the past little while.

20140716-080301-28981438.jpgBack in March I started school again, heading back with the goal of becoming a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, since finishing my university degree years ago, heading back to school has been an interesting experience. I forgot just how exhausting using your brain on a regular basis could be, the program I am enrolled in is also a one year intensive so it is exactly that, intense.  But enough about school. I don’t have to think about that for another 10 weeks or so.

What have I been up to.  Well quite honestly school has taken up about 80% of my time, but in the mist of all that craziness I have managed to complete the 101 day Digestive Detox I started in the spring and I just wrapped up a 30 day yoga challenge with my yoga studio, so I thought figure I would do a little recap, and then I am hoping to start bringing you delicious recipes and fun workouts again really soon.

So the 101 days of clean eating is over and thank goodness.  It was great to know that I was able to remain 100% committed for the majority of the experiment, however it is even more fantastic to know that it is over!  I have discovered that I have a pretty good 80/20 balance and I am keen on committing to that.  I found that the full on 100% clean eating, no drinking etc. was a little too extreme and made me dig my heels in at some points.  But it is always great to push your boundaries to get to places that make you feel a little uncomfortable.  Now it is over and I am back to a nice balanced diet of healthy, live, fresh foods with the occasional glass of wine while sitting on my patio.

20140716-080301-28981108.jpgThe clean eating challenge wasn’t the only thing I was challenging myself with this spring, I also signed up for a 30 day detox yoga challenge.   Now this was an incredible experience.  After returning from my yoga teacher training in Costa Rica and enrolling in school I was finding it challenging to attend more than one or two yoga classes a week.  I realized that I wasn’t committing to myself, my personal development and my practice.   The 30 day challenge really helped me to refocus and to make my practice a priority.

20140716-080300-28980516.jpgMaking my own yoga practice a priority allowed me to be more creative with the classes I was creating for others and helped me to find a little clarity in the midst of school, training, half marathon training, my part-time jobs, family and friends.   This challenge also provided me a way to start becoming a part of the yoga community.   The studio I frequent here in Ottawa has a great yoga community but I always felt like I was in a rush so I never took the time to say hello and speak with others.  This challenge showed me that I have the time to say hello and make new friends.  I strongly recommend if your local yoga studio does a challenge like this you make the commitment to yourself and try it out.

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Now that all of the challenges are over I am settling back into my regular gym, running and yoga routine and enjoying the outdoors as much as possible.   I have also started teaching my first outdoor fitness class and it has to date been a complete blast!

All in all I am happy to say it is officially summer for me. I get some time to relax and rest before school starts up again in September, I get to do some yoga outside on Parliament hill and in my yoga studio and I have a half marathon to look forward to in August.  In the mean time I am going to be spending time catching up on my personal reading and spending time in the sun.

20140716-080301-28981809.jpgHappy Humpday everyone!

Question:  What types of recipes and workouts would you like to see in the future?

Food Friday – Freezer Meals

I have talked a load about meal prep in the past so I don’t want to get into that today. I do however want to give some food making time saving ideas.

Recently I have gone back to school and started teaching yoga, all while keeping my day job and yup meal prep can often feel like the last thing I want to do but I know in the long run it will save me some time. So after speaking with a good friend we settled on a great way to do meal prep and keep some variety in our lives.

Starting with just the two of us writing emails back and forth figuring out our guidelines we formed a little two person freezer meal group.

What’s a freezer meal group? It is a group where people with common interests in food get together and bulk make some meals for sharing. When we stared our group we agreed on a couple things:

1. We would make healthy clean meals
2. We would give the other members of the group the power to say no to certain ingredients or meals as a whole. For dietary restriction reasons and taste, no one wants to get stuck with something they can’t or won’t eat.
3. Portion would have to be enough for a meal and left overs for a second meal. We also got specific on the size of dish for casseroles and such, we picked something that would be easy to make and still provide enough food.
4. We would exchange food stuffs once a month.

Pretty simple right! It has also been fun to challenge myself to keep finding tasty healthy meals that will do well in the freezer and it has saved me am infinite amount of time.

Now this idea isn’t a new one and it isn’t something I came up with off the top of my head. I have seen multiple blog posts about it but to be honest it always looked like more trouble than it was worth. Perhaps it was because those groups always had a minimum of 4 people and they always seemed to cook together.

Either way we have found something that works for us and I am sure happy we did. On nights where I have my own gym session, am teaching a yoga class and still have to come home and study meals that can just be popped into the oven have saved my life. Also knowing that the meals are clean and healthy makes me feel even more excited about their convince.

Just another example about how clean eating doesn’t have to be hard and complicated.

Have you ever tried something like this? Would you be interested in hearing more about this or what types of meals we make? I would love to hear back from you.

Happy Friday!

Sugar Cravings are the Worst

Putting all things in perspective sugar cravings probably aren’t the “worst” but they can get pretty brutal at times. Between the headache that seems like it will never go away, the intense compulsion to eat any baked goods in your vicinity or the extreme irritability that comes with withdrawals it is hard to pick which is worse.

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Now I am someone that generally eats fairly healthy. I always do my best to eat loads of fruit and vegetable, whole grains, complex carbohydrates,and lean proteins but that isn’t to say I don’t indulge every once in a while. Unfortunately, as I have stated in the past my last “indulgence” has lasted for months so as a special treat I am currently going through delayed sugar withdrawal.

I have done cleanses and clean eating challenges in the past and I would have to say with the exception of my first cleanse ever (10 years ago) this will be ranking as one of my worst sugar withdrawals of life.

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I find myself sitting here picturing floating Easter chocolate, licorice and red velvet cake hoping that my berry smoothie with satisfy my need for sweets knowing it won’t because there is no refined sugar in it. I think the worst part of it (besides knowing this would happen when I was eating all the food mentioned above) is knowing that besides doing a handful of things (like putting cinnamon in everything) there isn’t much I can do but wait it out and just waiting is a terrible feeling. But alas I have done this to myself so no complaining.

Have you ever experience this from sugar, wheat or dairy (they are my big three)? Or any other food that you find yourself craving intensely after cutting it out or reducing it from your regular diet? Let me know I would love to hear it.

Happy Thursday everyone!

Weekend Round Up – more Birthdays

This weekend was my first weekend in the new studio for Rock n’ Roll yoga. It is funny how something as small as a change in venue can have your nerves firing off as though you are teaching your first class.

Nerves aside the class was great. The space at Studio X was amazing, bright, cozy and clean. All the wonderful students who came to the first class were impressed and pleased with the new digs, so before class even started we were all starting off on the right foot.

After class Saturday afternoon it was back home to get ready for the final stages of a friend’s birthday surprise. We had informed her that we would hang out but she had no idea we would be surprising her.

Her fiancé did an amazing job of being sneaky and getting her out of the house for an hour so we would have enough time to decorate and prepare a bunch of her favorite foods

20140303-095350.jpgWhen she came in she totally didn’t suspect a thing. But once she saw us she was completely surprised! After attempting to run away from the surprise it all sunk in and she was excited to be hanging out with a small group of friends while snacking on some of her favour it foods.20140303-095402.jpgAfter a great night Saturday I was up early Sunday morning to tidy up a little and then had a nice relaxing day filled with my right now fav TV show Burn Notice and lots of snuggling with my kittens.

Now it is Monday and my first day of school. I am definitely excited to start learning and relearning how to take notes and pay attention for more than an hour at a time.

20140303-100233.jpgI hope everyone had a happy Monday.

Food Friday – Fish Tacos

So earlier this week I posted a beautiful picture of some tacos.  After being asked several times for the recipe I decided to postpone what I had planned for this Friday’s food Friday and to share the fish taco recipe instead.

These tacos were a bit of an experiment and I was so excited with how they turned out.  They definitely have a little kick to them, so if you are heat sensitive you might want to reduce the chili powder in fish rub as there is a bit more chili powder in the taco sauce.

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Serves 4 – serving size 2 tacos

6 small Tilapia fillets
1 tbsp cumin
2 tbsp chipotle chili powder
1 tsp sea salt
Squirt of lime

1 cup low fat Greek yogurt
1-3 tsp chipotle chili powder (to taste)
2.5 tsp lime juice

2 cups shredded cabbage
4 diced scallions
1/2 cup shredded cucumber
1 diced orange or red pepper

8 soft taco shells

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. In a small bowl mix together cumin, chili powder and salt. Set aside.
3. Spray a cookie sheet with olive oil. Place filets on the cookie sheet and rum with spiced. Place in preheated ovens for 10-15minutes.
4. Chop, slice and grate veggies and get them ready for taco assembly.
5. In a small bowl mix together Greek yogurt, like fresh squeezed juice and chipotle pepper.
6. Prepare taco shells according to their directions. For fish tacos I prefer getting nice quality soft tacos so you can warm them up in a pan and get them a little crispy.
7. Stack all the delicious veggies, top with fish and Greek yogurt sauce and ENJOY!

I hope you all enjoy this recipe my husband and I definitely did.

Happy Friday Everyone!