Welcome a Healthy 2019!
This time of year we focus on our daily habits and vow to change. Living a healthier way is usually at the top of the list.
Finding a new recipe for the table—or for life—is a great beginning.
Reducing waste, making more time for ourselves, eating better and living with a bit more kindness can serve all of us better.
Here I share with you a few recipes for life that you can explore and perhaps incorporate into your life this upcoming year:
The average American produces five pounds of waste per day! Hopefully, you are not the average American. But we can all look for ways to reduce plastics in our lives.
Every year, eight million metric tons of plastic end up in our oceans. Consider ways to eliminate plastic in your life. If you can only find one plastic product in your daily life to drop, you are one step closer to a solution. Consider replacing plastic wrap with wet kitchen towels or these handy Bees Wrap wrappers, or Mason jars with lids for storage containers.
Anything you do this year that reduces waste will benefit all of us.
Reuse and and Repurpose
Visit the thrift shops and second hand shops when you need something, before going shopping for new. It’s amazing what these treasure troves offer in once-used goodies.
And while you visit a thrift store, browse the wardrobe section and see if you can’t find a treasure that you can wear—something that may replace a future purchase of a garment that was manufactured in a factory sweatshop or with products that are bad for the environment.
Herbs and Remedies
Consider teas for remedies and warmth. The best protection against cold and flus is not a flu shot—it is keeping your own immune system strong and healthy.
Get outside in the sun every day!
Get plenty of rest and drink lots of teas that promote health and rest. Herbalists are creating super tasty teas that are great for our well-being during these cold seasons. My dear friend Caitlin at Mermaid Farm on Martha’s Vineyard often shares a glass jar of some recently concocted herbal blend she assures me will relieve symptoms. I find these gifts to be the best medicine I can take to stay healthy.
I like to explore with herbs in remedies and here is one recipe that you could create:
1 cup linden flowers
1 cup elderberries
4 tablespoons dried sage
4 tablespoons dried elderflowers
4 tablespoons dried thyme
Mix together and place in a clean jar with a tight lid. Date and label and it will keep well up to a year.
For tea: Use 1 tablespoon in 2 cups of boiling water and allow to steep for 10 minutes.
For bath: Use 2 cups in 4 cups of water and allow to steep 60 minutes. Pour into hot bath and give yourself a good soak.
Look for organic. The flowers are super flavorful for teas and the leaves taste more like grass, but the effects are great from either leaves or flowers.
Sage, elderberry and thyme are all great in herbal remedies that when taken together work to sooth the affects of colds and promote immune systems during the cold and flue season.Look for Elderberry Syrup for coughs or for dried elderberries in bulk through Frontier.
Here is a super tasty gluten free, dairy free dish that can stand alone or as a side dish for lunch or dinner. It is great served for leftovers on top of a lightly dressed salad.
Recipe: Sweet Potato, Spinach, Onions and Tahini
4 pounds sweet potatoes, washed well (skin on) and cut into 1″ cubes
2 medium onions, sliced in half moons
1 Tbsp. fresh sage
3 Tbsp. fresh thyme
6 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. raz al hanout (this is a great mix of cumin, ginger, allspice, cinnamon, rose and nutmeg)
1 bunch spinach or chard
Preheat the oven to 350˚.
5 Tbsp. light tahini paste
Juice of 1 lemon
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/8 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
2 Tbsp. coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley (arugula is a great substitute)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Combine the sweet potatoes, sage, thyme, 3 Tbsp. olive oil and raz al hanout, in a bowl and toss well so that the squash is evenly coated. Spread the butternut squash and onions on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 20 minutes, until cooked through. Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes.
While the squash is cooking, heat a skillet with 3 Tbsp. olive oil and the onion, and sauté the greens until wilted. As soon as the greens are wilted, remove from the heat and place in a serving bowl that will hold the greens and the butternut squash mixture.
Make the dressing by blending the tahini, lemon juice and garlic until you have a smooth consistency. You can add water if necessary.
Add the cooked butternut squash to the wilted greens and drizzle with the the tahini sauce.
Sprinkle with the pine nuts, parsley or arugula and salt and pepper.
Who knows where this 2019 year will take us? Predictions are fun, but intentions and passions are important guides for a well-lived life. Follow some of my recipes or create your own: The importance is in making a commitment to a better way of life. Step in, dive in, or test the waters, but whatever you do, take time to live a healthier life.
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