FREEKEH Foods Review and Recipe

Over the past few weeks, I have had the chance to review (meaning cook and eat!!!!) the fabulous Freekeh Foods.

Curious as to what Freekeh really is? I’m glad you asked :) Read on for this info straight from the source:

What is Freekeh?

So glad you asked! Freekeh is a process which means “to rub” in Arabic. Freekeh was created by accident nearly 2,000 years ago when a Middle Eastern village was attacked and their crop of young green wheat was set ablaze. Most folks would sulk over their misfortune, but the crafty villagers rubbed off the chaff, cooked it up and “Eureka!” Freekeh was created. We’re proud to offer you this tasty, nutritious ancient grain with a funny name.

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So what do you do with Freekeh?

The question should be… what can’t you do with it? We love it in soups, pilafs, salads, you name it! There really is no wrong way to Freekeh! So go ahead — unleash your imagination and make it your own. Adopt it, fall in love with it.

 

Freekeh truly is one of the most versatile grains I have worked with AND the texture is amazing. I tried two different types (regular and rosemary sage) and was able to find LOADS of recipes on their site.

The family favorite was the Freekeh Jambalaya. We had this after returning from a trip to New Orleans, where we tasted the real deal. The Freekeh Jambalaya was a winner and hit the spot :)

Freekeh is a nutritionist approved way to add more healthy grains to your diet and reap the benefits from fiber, carbs and all natural goodness.

 

It’s National Nutrition Month!

Welcome to National Nutrition Month (and a Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to you as well!).

This month I will be highlighting what I love most: FOOD!

I’ll be working to get you back into the kitchen with easy recipes and meal prep, as well as chats about proper nutrition and all the nutrition tricks needed to get the most health out of your body. I’ll focus on education and fun as well. Food shouldn’t be boring, even if you’re trying to lose weight! You’ll get the insider track on eliminating digestive disorders and meal prepping like a pro so dinner can be on the table in less time than it takes hitting a drive through.

Remember, it’s NUTRITION, not exercise, that can make or break your health and wellness goals.

Be on the lookout for more and sign up over to the RIGHT ==========> to make sure you’re in on all the goods (even some freebies and sales THIS MONTH ONLY).

See you tomorrow!

Michelle

michelle3

 

4th of July Recipes!

Hello and Happy 4th!

This time of year brings loads of family and friend time along with all the fixings (i.e. food!) so here are a few easy recipes for your 4th as well as some tips on staying healthy :)

Do it yourself marinade:

Most bottled marinades contain high fructose corn syrup and loads of preservatives. You can whip up an easy marinade with the simplest of ingredients. Here are 2 of my favorites.

Soak meat in yogurt overnight. I know that sounds really weir BUT the yogurt will tenderize the meat and make it soak up more of your marinade. No yogurt? You can simply use milk with a small squeeze of lemon, about 1/4 wedge.

Marinade 1:

Best for pork/chicken

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

8 chopped rosemary sprigs

6 chopped basil leaves

juice of 1/2 lemon

pinch of salt

pepper

Mix together in bag, thrown in meat and let sit for 4+ hours (can sit overnight)

Marinade 2:

Best for fish

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons dill

juice of 1/2 lemon

juice of 1/2 lime

pinch of salt

pepper

Place fillets in shallow dish, cover with marinade, seal with plastic wrap, let sit for no more than 2 hours

Both of these are super easy marinades. I prefer dry rubs for red meats. You can use a variety of spices including:

  • rosemary
  • thyme
  • cayenne
  • red pepper flakes
  • chili power
  • cocoa power
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • sea salt
  • pepper

Be creative and see what you can come up with for your party.

Tasty Sides:

I know the old standbys are potato salad and coleslaw, but you can save time and calories by thinking outside of the box.

Try serving crudities (small bites of veggies) with a variety of dips. Any mayonnaise based dip can have a healthy twist by switching the mayo for greek yogurt.

Instead of slaw, try a shredded salad. Take romaine, red cabbage, green cabbage, baby spinach, and maybe a spicier green such as arugula. PLace in large bowl and pour a sweet ginger dressing over it.

Ginger Dressing:

1/2 ginger root, peeled and sliced

2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon mustard

Place ginger in food processor and pulse until soft, add honey and mustard and blend until creamy.

The Sweets:

It can be so tempting to break out the pies and cookies I know, but have you thought about playing with fruit? Try offering up some fruit skewers this 4th. Simple pile on different in season fruits as though you were making a kabob (by the way, pineapple and peach skewers can be grilled and are delicious at the end of a meal). Kids love these and you can offer up some yogurt based dips to sweeten the deal. If skewers aren’t your thing, try a large fruit salad. Always squeeze a small amount of lemon/lime on your fruit to keep it from browning. You can also mix any fruit into fun popsicles or frozen yogurt for a cooling treat in the middle of Summer.

Staying Safe:

Sun safety is a big concern during these outdoor gatherings, as is bug safety here in the South! Make sure that you and your loved ones are protected by applying sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher every 4 hours, more often if swimming is involved. Most of the spray formulas are easy to use and don’t feel extra greasy. If you cannot tolerate the spray, try a good rub on like Burt’s Bees, which helps with both the sun and the bugs :)

You can get some sun protection from your foods. Try adding in lots of berries, leafy greens and sweet potatoes as these foods have been shown to increase the skins natural sun protection.

For the Adults in the room:

When partaking of the alcoholic beverages, have you ever stopped to think about how much good it could actually be doing you? Well, if you are a beer drinker, try a darker brew. The darker the brew, the higher the antioxidants. Recent studies show that dark brews actually offer several health benefits including boosting antioxidant consumption. If you love the mixed drinks, try to forgo the heavy syrups. Not only do they add calories, but it is in fact the sugar that causes the hangover. Stick with lighter spritzes (white wine and club soda, red wine and cranberry juice, vodka and sparkling water) if you are spending time outside. This will help cool the body. Be aware that alcohol, as well as caffeine, dehydrate. So make sure you are taking it in moderation and chasing it down with water.

However you celebrate and wherever you may be, I hope that you take the time to give thanks for our freedoms this 4th of July.

Stay healthy!

Michelle

Thirsty Thursday!

Welcome to your very first Thirsty Thursday!

Today is a real treat as I am going to post 4 recipes to satisfy cravings, bring more vitality to the body, brighten the skin, strengthen the hair and nails, and just make you feel great all over!

Avocado Smoothie

This smoothie has recently been added to my diet and I am in love with it. It is VERY rich and decadent, not for those seeking a lot of weight loss. If you are trying to drop weight, just use 1/2 the avocado for the benefits of healthy fats, but 1/2 the added fat and calories to your diet.

Ingredients:

1 ripe avocado, pitted and halved

1/2 cup organic low-fat vanilla yogurt

1 cup almond milk

3 tablespoons local honey

1 teaspoon milled flax

handful of ice

Throw into blender and puree. The avocado is tasteless but lends a wonderful, lush richness to this smoothie PLUS it helps with hair, skin and nail health :)

Recipe from Sadie Nardini, www.sadienardini.com

Tropical Shakeology Mojito

This is one of my favorite ways to get my motor running on a blah day :)

Ingredients:

4 oz plain coconut water

6 oz water

several mint sprigs (to your taste)

1 frozen banana

1 scoop Tropical strawberry Shakeology

handful of ice

Blend until smooth, garnish with extra mint is desired :)

Super Quick Hydrating Tropical Wonder

I am a HUGE fan of coconut water! It hydrates the body’s cells faster than regular water and more efficiently (without all the toxins left behind) than sports drinks.

Ingredients:

1 Shakeology Shaker Cup (or ANY shaker cup of choice, as you will not be using a blender)

8 oz O.N.E. mango and peach coconut water (they have other flavors, this just happens to be my fave)

1 scoop Tropical Strawberry Shakeology

Put liquid in the Shako. Mix thoroughly until smooth :)

Get up and GLOW Juice

This requires an actual juicer. If you have one, awesome. If you’re thinking of investing in a juicer I really enjoy it and the health benefits are outstanding! I do suggest you do your research and get the best bang for your buck. I drink this to help keep my system in and alkaline state, healthy and strong.

Ingredients:

2 tart apples

1/2 head of romaine lettuce

4 carrots

1 cup swiss chard

1 cup spinach

1 cup kale

1 oz fresh ginger

4 celery stalks

1 cup fresh parsley

few mint sprigs

1 lemon

Rough cut all the ingredients and send them through the juicer. Pour over ice and enjoy! This makes about 28 oz, which you can drink total for breakfast or split into 2 servings. :)

Enjoy the Fit Life today!

Michelle

www.livingbytheblood.com

 

 

Stuffed Chicken Breasts

OK, so I made these yesterday as part of my food prep day (we’ll get to that in a later post) and they are delish! My kids loved them and they make for a great meal, paired with brown rice and some steamed veg. Plus, it’s one of those things that looks like you slaved over it, when you really didn’t :)

STUFFED CHICKEN BREASTS

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 onion

1-2 cups spinach

1/2 cup fresh parsley

1 tablespoon EVOO

1/4 cup feta cheese crumbles (I used the tomato/basil flavor, YUM!)

Tenderizing mallet

Plastic wrap

Food processor (if you do not own one, you can chop it all, but it takes forever! The processor makes it super quick)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Place chicken breasts between plastic wrap and get some anger out by pounding them with a mallet until they are even all around. Don’t go too thin.

Throw spinach, parsley, feta, EVOO, and onion and the food processor and zap it until it looks like a paste. This is where you can add a little salt/pepper if desired.

Place about 1 and 1/2 spoon fulls of mixture into chicken breasts and roll (you shouldn’t need anything to hold it).

Place in baking pan sprayed lightly with cooking spray.

Bake in oven for about 20-22 minutes or until chicken springs back when you touch it (totally how you can tell if it’s done).

Let sit for a couple of minutes, then slice and serve warm with brown rice and your choice of veggies or salad.

These are also great to pack in your lunch kit for on the go eating.

1 serving is less than 150 cals and only about 2 grams of fat, PLUS you get loads of nutrients from the spinach, liver cleansing from the parsley, and lean, muscle-building protein from the chicken. It’s a knockout!

From my table to yours, ENJOY!

Michelle