Blueberry Scones

July 4, 2010

Blueberry Scones

A long holiday weekend either means several days packed with travel and exciting activities, or an opportunity to stay around the house and catch up on much needed rest. This 4th of July weekend, I chose the later. Intentionally staying at home (which takes a lot of intention for me) and chilling out in front of the TV and with a good book also gave me the chance to work on some recipes I had swirling around in my mind.

First up, blueberry scones made with whole-grain pastry flour. Last summer, I shared a recipe for whole-grain blueberry muffins using seasonal, locally grown blueberries. Well, it’s blueberry season again, so take advantage!

Image 1: Blueberry scones dough in a stainless steel bowl; Image 2: Blueberry scones dough patted out on a wooden cutting board and cut into wedges

Blueberries are packed with good nutrition – anti-oxidants (vitamin A and vitamin C), fiber, and only 84 calories per cup. I mostly prefer to eat blueberries straight from the container rather than cooking with them because, like most fruit, they taste delicious all on their own and it’s healthier to eat them raw. However, every now and then, I do like them in a breakfast or tea-time pastry such as muffins or scones.

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Filed Under Breakfast/Brunch, Vegetarian/Conversions | 5 Comments | Print This Post

An Interview with Tracye McQuirter, Author of By Any Greens Necessary

June 7, 2010

By Any Greens NecessaryIn our seemingly never-ending quest to lose weight and eat more healthfully, Black women have a new motivating resource and guide in Tracye McQuirter and her recently released book, By Any Greens Necessary: A Revolutionary Guide for Black Women Who Want to Eat Great, Get Healthy, Lose Weight, and Look Phat.

A nutritionist and 20-year vegan with a master’s of public health nutrition from New York University, Tracye is co-founder of BlackVegetarians.org and the Black Vegetarian Society of New York. She shares the message in her new book that a plant-based diet without meat, dairy or eggs, is the best for Black women’s health.

If you’re already thinking, “Forget it! I’ve got to have my meat, ice cream, butter, or cheese!” read on. Tracye has a message that everyone can benefit from. She busts the nutritional myths about protein and dairy, and will definitely have you thinking twice about your food choices. The fact is, our health is at stake and we may need to consider revolutionary changes to reclaim wellness … by any greens necessary.

Why do you think the vegan diet is the best choice for people, especially black women?

A vegan diet can help you live longer. It can help you prevent and even reverse chronic diseases. The world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals agrees that a plant-based diet is the healthiest. The information is not disputed; it’s just not widely promoted. A vegan diet is not just about living longer and disease free – it can also improve your quality of life, and it can help protect the planet.

Black women, we’re fabulous, but we have the worst health [among other demographics of women]. We’re in a crisis situation, so we can’t tip toe around this issue. Eighty percent of us are overweight and 50 percent of us are obese. We’re the heaviest group in the nation and we have the diabetes and other chronic diseases that come with that.

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Allen’s Juicy Turkey Burgers

May 27, 2010

Allen's Turkey Burger on a square white plate

Who’s the best cook in the family out of my large group of cousins on my dad’s side? This was the question supposedly answered by my cousin Allen who claimed he held the crown and title. I don’t know about that, but he did come up with a good combination of herbs and seasonings for a delicious, juicy turkey burger.

Image 1: Raw ground turkey with seasons sprinkled on top in a stainless steel bowl; Image 2: Raw ground turkey with breadcrumbs and a whole egg out of the shell on the meat all sitting in a white bowl

If you’re looking for a good recipe to help kick-off the grilling and barbeque season, I definitely recommend Allen’s juicy turkey burgers. As long as you use ground turkey thighs or ground turkey breast no leaner than 97/3, you should have a tasty burger.

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Cooking with the Washington Youth Garden: Fresh Asparagus, Spinach and Mint Tea

May 18, 2010

Washington Youth Garden

I’m sure the parents of the 3rd and 4th graders from two D.C. area public charter schools would be amazed by their children’s enjoyment of asparagus and cherry tomatoes, sautéed spinach, and fresh mint tea. Being that I only started enjoying asparagus last year, I was definitely impressed, but that just goes to show the power of fresh picked vegetables straight from the garden.

Last week and the week before, I had the pleasure of giving a cooking demo to students in the Washington Youth Garden’s Garden Science program. Located in the beautiful National Arboretum, the Washington Youth Garden provides environmental science and food education programs for D.C. youth and their families. These programs include teaching gardening and how food gets from farm to plate, how to start a school garden, how to be good stewards of the environment, and how to prepare fresh nutritious food.

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Filed Under Beverages, Must Reads, Quick & Easy, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian/Conversions | 3 Comments | Print This Post

Chocolate Rum Brownies

April 27, 2010

Image 1: Rum brownie batter in an 8x8 stainless steel pan in the oven; Image 2: Two baked chocolate rum brownies on a square white plate

Tempting co-workers with afternoon sweets, especially when few people can say no to chocolaty goodness, is not the most helpful thing to do for a group of health conscious folks, however, many still appreciate an afternoon pick-me up so I didn’t feel too bad about bringing in brownies twice last week. Thanks to my co-workers’ willingness to be my brownie taste-testers, I have a delicious chocolate rum brownie recipe to share that’s received multiple approvals.

Have you made brownies from scratch lately? They’re incredibly easy to make, so if you haven’t, put the box aside and give it a try. You don’t even need an electric mixer.

Image 1: Ingredients - 4 oz. chocolate bar, butter, two eggs, baking powder, and a bottle of dark rum all sitting on a cutting board; Image 2: Melted chocolate in a stainless steel bowl with a bottle of dark rum

There are a large variety of brownie recipes out there, but your basic chocolate brownie recipe usually consists of ½ cup flour, ½ cup butter or oil, 1 cup sugar, 2 eggs, and cocoa powder or melted chocolate along with a few other ingredients for an 8” x 8” pan. Of course some recipes include nuts and some don’t.

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