Chocolate Giveaway: With Love from Me to You

Happy Valentines Day!!

I got you a little present.

It’s really cliche, but I couldn’t resist.

Look how pretty!

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Everyone needs a little chocolate, and this is my favorite kind.

I’ve tried almost every flavor and they all have their perks. Some are spicy, some minty, some are strong, some more mild, some fruity, some nutty.

So I chose six flavors and they’re all yours.

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I wanted to share some love on this Valentines Day because you have all been so good to me over the past year. It’s because of your support for this blog that I now have my own business and am doing something I love. It’s because of you that I have this outlet to share my thoughts and experiences, and it’s because of your openness that I have the opportunity to try to help some of you in making positive changes in your lives.

I think I owe you a few more chocolate bars for that.

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I hope that you take some time today to not only show your love for everyone around you, but to also take some time to love on yourself. Do something just for you today. Because loving yourself should be your number one priority. It is only when you really love yourself and fill up your own bucket that you can show everyone else how much you truly love them.

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And now I’m rambling about love, so I’ll stop and just cut to the chocolate chase.

To enter in the giveaway for these Chocolove Chocolate bars, just leave a comment on this post telling me one way you’re going to love yourself today. It could be anything… from eating something you love to listening to your favorite music while driving home. Whatever it is that fills up your bucket. Share it with me!

AND if you’d like to tweet about it, you get an extra entry. Just tweet something about the giveaway and add my twitter handle in there (@studioeats14) and the link to this post so that I know you’ve tweeted.

I’ll keep this giveaway open for 4 or 5 days and will announce the winner mid-week next week.

YAY for chocolate and for this day of love and especially for you.

And if you haven’t signed up for my 21 Day March Intuitive Eating Challenge, but are interested, go on and sign up! We are getting an amazing group going and I can’t wait for it to kick off.

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Healthy Cookie Recipe Roundup

Have you entered my cereal GiveAway yet? Just leave a comment to enter to win 4 boxes of my favorite Gluten Free, super healthy, delicious cereal! 

Cookies are everywhere. So many cookie recipes flying around the Internetz, cookies being made for the holidays, cookie swaps being held, cookie making parties being attended, so many cookies!

So I thought I’d do a little roundup of some of the healthy yet delicious cookie recipes I’ve come up with. It’s nice to bring a healthy cookie to a party for a change. I’m telling you– more people will appreciate it than you think!

1. Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies: no sugar, oil, or butter. Whole Wheat.

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2. Oatmeal Honey Chocolate Chip Cookies: honey is used instead of sugar, no oil or butter. Whole Wheat.

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3. Pumpkin Cookies with Raisinets: half the sugar of a normal pumpkin cookie, Whole Wheat flour.

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4. Compost Cookies-  Zucchini, Carrot, Chocolate Chip: ummm, they have VEGGIES in them. What?

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These were all tested by my friends and family and although they are quite healthy, they repeatedly got stamps of approval. Enjoy!

Do you have any healthy cookie recipes that are fit for the holidays? Link up your recipe in the comment section! 

WIAW {12.12.2012} My Friends Feed Me Well

Yesterday was a good day. And a GREAT food day. Added bonus– my friends cooked me 90% of my food, which makes it that much better. I am one lucky girl.

I ate some really really delicious stuff, so let’s get right to it. If you follow me on Instagram or my Facebook Page, you’ve already seen most of this, but here we go anyway.  Thanks, Jenn for some more WIAW love.

Starting off on the right foot, I headed to Amanda’s for brunch. She knows exactly what I like and served me my favorite breakfast in the entire world. Toast, soft poached eggs, smoked salmon, fruit, and french press coffee. I mean, what else do you need?

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We chatted for a few hours while slowly eating and drinking a couple cups of coffee.

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My situation:

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I then headed to my first class. At around 4:00, I had some time to kill before my second class so I stopped in to a cafe to get something decadent. Mmmm hmmm, decadent. I was in the mood for some tea and a dessert, so I went for it.

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This is the house cheesecake from Cafe Angelique. Holy guacamole.

As I was debating with the waiter about what I should order, the lady sitting next to me was like “you should really order that cheesecake. It is SO good. And it’s pretty light.” Oh really? It’s light? Perfect.

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After the first half a bite, I knew that this cheesecake was not light, no it was not light at all. But it was one of the better things I have eaten in a while and I enjoyed every second of it. Along with Ginger tea. On my way out I asked the waiter, “do you guys ALWAYS have that cheesecake here?”. Thankfully, they do. I shall return.

After my second class, I got home at around 7:45 and headed to Katie’s where Nana’s Mac & Cheese awaited me. My friends rock.

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She even fed me vegetables. Thank god, because If I go a day without vegetables, I slightly freak out.

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I ate this times three. You don’t mess around with Nana’s mac & cheese:

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This is Katie’s grandmother’s famous Mac and Cheese, hence the name “Nana’s mac”. it is the one thing Katie knows how to cook and man, she does it well. She said she would leave the recipe in the comments section below so you guys all have it. It’s made with pure, simple ingredients and hits the spot every single time. I grew up going to Katie’s for Nana’s mac all the time during middle school and high school. This dish has been around forever, and never lets us down.

I ended the night with a couple squares of peppermint dark chocolate.

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The day was decadent, delicious and I feel so grateful to have friends who cook for me. Although I love cooking, it’s the best feeling to sit back and just enjoy something someone else made for you.

And now it’s Wednesday! Time to kick off the day. Have a good one 🙂

WIAW {12.5.2012} and some Excitement

Morning! Before I get to my What I Ate Wednesday (WIAW) eats, I have some really exciting news. Last night, I finally hit publish and launched the Health Coaching page on my blog. Check it out! I will have more information about this coming in the next week or so, but in a nutshell, I’ve decided that I want to put my Health Coaching degree to full use and start coaching people on attaining a healthier relationship with food, their own bodies, and their weight. I talked about my entire Health Journey here, and my struggle with weight and emotional eating, and now want to help others free themselves of the burden this can have on their life. More to come on this! Much more.

ANYWAY, on to things equally as important… Breakfast! Thanks again to Jenn for hosting WIAW.

Rye toast, egg whites, melted American cheese. An orange, and coffee.

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Must I remind you about how much I love my egg and cheeses? 😉

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Lots of work was done in the morning, then a stroll through Central Park for about 45 minutes, and then Lunch.

Spinach base, chopped up cucumbers, carrots and red pepper. About a third of an avocado, 2 Black Bean Lentil Veggie Burgers, and roasted sweet potatoes. Drizzle of balsamic vinegar, truffle olive oil, and salt.


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Sooo, because of the 2 hours of prep I did on Sunday, this whole salad took me literally 3 minutes to throw together! The veggies were already chopped, the burgers and the ‘taters were already cooked…this was so nice and easy! The prep really does pay off- I never would have had the patience to put this salad together if it took more than a few minutes.

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So colorful 🙂

In between two of my classes, I had a little bit of a break so I found a coffee shop, VBar, down by NYU and stopped in to get a few things done. I hardly ever have a second cup of coffee, but I needed it yesterday.

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Then it was off to my second class at Columbia. How pretty are the lights around their entrance gate??

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Right before my 5:00 class started, I had a snack to hold me over.

A juicy pear and cheddar cheese slices.

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Dinner was eaten on the late side and was also really quick and easy.

Chopped up Grilled Chicken, Whole Wheat Couscous, Sautéed Mushrooms, Slivered Almonds. Again, all things I made on Sunday during my massive prep session.

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And finally, a cookie (recipe coming soon) and almond butter to finish off the night.

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And that’s a wrap! Have a great Wednesday.

Apple Gingerbread Loaf

Yesterday, this happened:

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A hot loaf of gingerbread filled with warm, soft apples came out of my oven.

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A couple of pieces were immediately cut while the loaf was still hot, exactly what you are not supposed to do. Impatience wins.

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Thin slices of real butter were spread on top, and a fork was brought out to try to eat this in a civilized fashion.

Divine.

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Apple Gingerbread Loaf

(makes 10 servings)

Adapted from this recipe, but with several adjustments to make it **healthier** (win!)

  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 4 T butter
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used almond milk)
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1.5 cups white flour
  • 1.5 t baking soda
  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 2 t ground ginger
  • 1 t ground cloves
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 large apple or 2 small apples, chopped into bite sized pieces

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Melt butter in microwave. Beat it together with sugar. Add milk and molasses. Stir it all together.

3. In a large bowl, stir together all dry ingredients (flour through salt). Add in the butter/sugar/molasses/milk mixture. Add in hot water. Stir all together.

4. Add in chopped apples.

5. Spread out in a greased 9 in loaf pan (I just sprayed mine with cooking spray).

6. Cook in oven for about 45 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.

This is great for a snack, dessert, or even breakfast. Because I reduced the sugar quite a bit, it’s not too sweet. I suggest slicing up any leftovers and freezing the slices in individual bags. Perfect for an anytime treat.

Lightened Up Pumpkin Pie

As we all know, this has been a tough week on the East Coast, and NYC has been hit hard. Living on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, I got lucky and fortunately kept power and had no damage, but my heart goes out to everyone who has suffered a tremendous amount of loss.

It’s been incredible to watch people helping each other out in the city. Everyone is trying to pitch in in one way or another and give what they have to people who are without anything.

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Since my classes were cancelled all week, I stuck around my apartment and did what I could from here. Throughout the week I had friends and family come in and out charging their phones and laptops, getting work done, connecting to their friends and family, taking hot showers, and sleeping in an apartment with power. I was happy to be able to help out in such a small way.

I didn’t want to stray too far from my apartment since people kept getting in touch with me to come over, plus getting anywhere in the city all week was nearly impossible, and certainly not anything I wanted to do if it wasn’t necessary. So I stayed home, tried to take care of people, watched more news than I ever have in my life, served my refugees pancakes and hot coffee, and baked my first ever pie.

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I never used to understand when people said that cooking is a way for them to de-stress, but during a tough week last week, methodically measuring out ingredients and slowly creating something sounded so appealing.

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In fact, this pie inspired me to invite a bunch of people over for dinner on Friday night in an attempt to bring people together after a really rough week to just be together, de-stress and have a good time.

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It’s hard to know what to do in these types of situations. It’s hard to find your place and figure out how to help, what to do, what to say. I’m still trying to take it all in, figure it all out and think about how to help each day, as I know we all are.

Cooking for people is one way that I try to take care of them. It’s something that I can offer, and so during this crazy week when I didn’t know what else to do to help, it’s what I turned to.

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Lightened Up Pumpkin Pie

(adapted from this recipe from Cooking Light)

Crust:

  • 1/2 package refrigerated pie dough

Filling:

  • 3/4 C packed brown sugar
  • 12 oz can evaporated low fat milk
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 15 oz can pumpkin (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t nutmeg
  • 1/2 t allspice
  • 1/4 t salt

1. Preheat oven to 425 and position oven rack to lowest position

2. For filling: combing all ingredients in a bowl, stirring with a whisk.

3. For crust: roll dough into 11 inch circle; fit into a 9 inch pie plate coated with butter or cooking spray.

4. Pour filling intro crust. Place pie plate on baking sheet, and place baking sheet in oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce oven to 350 (keep pie in oven), made for additional hour or until almost set. Allow to cool.

Three Pumpkin Recipes

Hello there! As I was laying in bed last night, I started feeling guilty. Guilty because I had leftovers from THREE delicious pumpkin recipes sitting in my fridge and I hadn’t shared a single one with you yet. How selfish of me!

So I knew I had to get these out this morning. Like many of you, I have been hit by the Pumpkin Bug. I finally bought a couple of cans of pumpkin at the store last week and have been coming up with recipes to use it ever since.

I am giving you the abridged version of these recipes because I have a big test tonight and hours of studying ahead of me, but hopefully these give you an idea of how to recreate. Just use them as inspiration, if anything!

First up… Pumpkin Pancakes:

I used this recipe (I love Emily’s recipes. They are some of my favorite. Vegetarian — sometimes vegan– but really hearty and wholesome) and made a few changes.

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Instead of flax, I used a real egg, I left out the apple cider vinegar and halved the entire recipe. I also used wheat germ instead of flour for 25% of the flour it called for (so half the recipe called for 1 cup WW flour. I used 3/4 cup flour and 1/4 cup wheat germ for a nutritional kick). It made 6 pancakes, and I saved half of them in my freezer for another day (probably today 😉 ). Also, I added chopped Walnuts for some healthy fats. I sprinkled them onto the pancakes while they were cooking. Delicious!

Next up… Baked Pumpkin Pasta with Roasted Veggies

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This has been great because I made a big batch of it and have had it all week. Rough recipe:

1) Roast Veggies. I used Eggplant, Brussels Sprouts, and a head of Cauliflower. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar, EVOO, S&P. Roast in 450 oven for about 30 minutes.

2) Cook pasta according to directions

3) Make the Sauce: I used about a half cup of tomato sauce, plus about half a can of pumpkin. I added a couple tablespoons of butter and about a spoonful of ricotta. You can get creative here.

4) Combine everything once the veggies/sauce/pasta are done into one large baking pan. Add some grated parmesan (handful) and bake at 350 for about 10 minutes. I used about 3 cups of roasted veggies, a cup of sauce, and a whole package of pasta. This made about 6 or 7 servings… good for the whole week.

This turned out better than I had expected and was super easy. I love how the pumpkin really helps create a pretty healthy but creamy sauce.

And finally… obbvviouusslly Pumpkin Cookies with Raisinets


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I randomly bought Raisinets the other day and needed to do something with them. What else other than a Pumpkin cookie!? I used Whole Wheat Pastry Flour instead of flour, which made these super light and fluffy. They really came out well!

I followed this recipe but halved it (I do not need 60 cookies sitting in my kitchen!). I also cut the sugar in half, so only used 1/2 cup instead of 1 cup for half the recipe. Like I said, I used WW pastry flour instead of flour, and of course Raisinets instead of Chocolate Chips.

I hope these recipes inspire you to add some fall flavored pumpkin to your meals. It’s a fun vegetable with a lot of health benefits (low calorie, tons of Vitamin A which is good for your eyes and your immune system, loaded with fiber), and is very very versatile. Go crazy!

Whole Wheat Orange-Cranberry Muffins

Hi guys!

I hope you had a great weekend. Mine was spent in Cape Cod with my brother’s fiancé and her friends Leah and Tara. Here we all are on the beach:

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Doing some cartwheels:

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And attempting some yoga:

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We did a lot of exploring and wandering. We went to antique shops, outdoor markets, and of course ate at some really good restaurants. On Sunday we visited a Cranberry bog where they harvest tons and tons of cranberries every season. I took some home and got to work yesterday on a fall inspired healthy cranberry muffin.

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When I bake, I like to make things pretty healthy. I figure that if I want something more indulgent, there are like 10 places I can get a more unhealthy muffin within a two block radius from where I live. So when I keep things in the house, or make things for friends, I like to make them on the healthier side.

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Enter whole wheat flour, wheat germ, no butter, and less sugar.

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These muffins are pretty delicious and only have about 115 calories per muffin.

They are great as an on the go breakfast, as a snack in the afternoon, or as an addition to lunch. The cranberries are naturally sour but when baked in the oven and mixed with some sugar, they retain their strong flavor but lose most of their bitterness.

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Did you know that cranberries are really really good for you? They pack a ton of antioxidants, have components within them that help to prevent bacteria from attaching to both the urinary and stomach lining, and in recent years have shown to have strong anti-cancer benefits. Research also shows that eating cranberries whole, rather than in juice form, can give you the maximum benefits and can help with cardiovascular and liver health. So yeah, cranberries are definitely a superfood of the Fall!

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Whole Wheat Orange Cranberry Muffins

makes 12 muffins

(adapted from this recipe)

  • 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
  • .5 cups wheat germ
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1/3 t salt
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cranberries
  • 2/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 small container of applesauce (or about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 t grated orange rind
  • 1/2 t vanilla
  • 1 large egg
  • cooking spray

1. Combine flour, wheat germ, baking powder, salt in a bowl

2. Add chopped cranberries.

3. Combine milk, applesauce, egg, orange, vanilla in a small bowl. Beat together.

4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix well until combined.

5. Coat muffin tin with cooking spray. Spoon in muffin mixture.

6. Bake in 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes.