Monthly Archives: July 2013

My NYC Fire Escape Garden

Growing your own food is easy, responsible, and super tasty. Plus, you don’t need that much space. Just utilize your imagination!

Reasons why growing your own food rocks:

  1. Lessen your carbon footprint by growing some things yourself. (Remember… those tomatoes at PathMart didn’t grow there. They grew hundreds of miles away. They hitched a ride on a huge truck across the country.)
  2. It’s cheaper to grow your own herbs than to keep buying those small packets. Plus, you only use about half of it before it goes off and you have to throw the thing away.
  3. Wanna be healthier? If you’ve grown it… you’ll eat it. Anything that makes us eat more fruits and veggies is a good thing.
  4. It forces you to be outdoors. Or, kind of outdoors. Anyway, you’ll probably get a little vitamin D from this activity.
  5. Monsanto can’t get you if you know where your food is coming from. (Make sure your seeds and seedlings are not genetically altered or modified.)
  6. You’ll reduce food waste. If you’ve waited for something to ripen on a vine that you take care of… you’re less likely to let it spoil and throw it out. That’s not really the case with that stupid banana that has gross brown spots you paid 50 cents for, right? That guy is going to spoil and get thrown out.
  7. It doesn’t take up that much time. I’d equate it to caring for fish in a tank.
  8. I sound like a hippie, but it’s fun. It turned fun. I don’t know how. Just kinda snuck up on me.

I can hear you say, “Well, I don’t have a backyard with room for a garden. I have no space!”

Dude. I live in New York City. I don’t have access to a yard… but I do use every inch of outdoorsey-type space I’ve got!

My First Fire Escape Garden:

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Chilis, mint, tomatoes, basil, lettuce. YUM!

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The tomatoes had a lovely view!

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Instant Oatmeal: Surprise! It’s not boring!

When we think about oatmeal, we think about mush. Then, we think about that scene from Oliver.


Not so appetizing. Right?

Let’s make this meal of oats into something that’s a bit more exciting, shall we?

Breakfast Idea:

If you’re in a rush, here’s an easy way to not skip breakfast. (Skipping breakfast will make you gain weight.)

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  1. Get some instant oatmeal (Ain’t nobody got time for the other stuff.)
  2. Shake some into a bowl and add just a little sea salt.
  3. Add boiling water to oatmeal to activate it, and mix with spoon.
  4. While the oatmeal is soaking, chop some strawberries or get out whatever other berries you want to add. (Chef B’friend’s fabulous mother suggests adding fresh ground black peppercorn to strawberries to make the flavor pop.)
  5. Add berries.
  6. Pour on a little soy or almond milk.
  7. Add honey to naturally sweeten it.
  8. Eat it!

Quick and easy. Delicious and will keep you from skipping breakfast. Or eating some horrid breakfast bar that has so many ingredients that you get bored whilst reading the label.

Dessert Idea: 

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This recipe was inspired by Chef B’friend’s mother’s recipe.

Everyone has an overripe banana or two hanging around the kitchen. Now, you don’t have to throw them away!

  1. Peel and mash bananas in bowl
  2. Add about 1 cup oatmeal (you can use instant) per banana in and mix. (Remember, you can stop right here for the no-bake option. Just form the cookies and throw them in the freezer to enjoy later!)
  3. Add any fillers you want: blueberries, chocolate, cinnamon, nuts, etc.
  4. Form the cookies
  5. Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray or line it with parchment paper or a silpat.
  6. Put them in the preheated (350 degrees) for 15 minutes
  7. Take them out. Let them cool. Look how cute they are. Eat them!

Do YOU have any bright ideas for using oatmeal? Leave a comment! 

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Clean Hand-Mashed Potatoes: Yes, you can eat them.

When we think about diets, we think about substituting “healthy” food for “guilty” food. What a totally messed up way to think about what fuels our body. If it’s natural… there’s a clean and delicious way to consume it. Potatoes get a bad rap. Let’s strip them down and allow ourselves to think about mashed potatoes in a whole new way.

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Yes, I like using sweet potatoes sometimes. Yes, there is a really good recipe that uses cauliflower instead of potatoes. That’s all fine and dandy, but my point is that we don’t have to “diet.” We have to de-brainwash ourselves into thinking that this vegetable is “bad” for us.

Now, adding lots of dairy and cheese will turn mashed potatoes into mashed thighs, but adding lots of dairy and cheese to ANYTHING will do that.

Here’s my recipe for clean hand-mashed potatoes. It’s a derivation of the version Chef B’friend taught me a while back:

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Ziplock Bag Citrus “Chicken” and Salad

Super healthy AND super tasty AND super easy? Heck yes! All you need to make this dish is a ziplock bag and a few simple ingredients.

This is one of the first recipes Chef B’friend taught me when I started to learn about food. It can be done with regular chicken, but I’d suggest you make sure that chicken had a healthy, happy life and could walk. (Know where your meat comes from!)

I use Quorn faux chicken… and you treat it just like it was meat. Quorn is one of the best vegetarian meatless options out there because it’s made from mushrooms rather than soy. (Too much soy in your diet can lead to an estrogen imbalance.)

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Here’s how to make this tasty dish!

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Union Square Farmers Market: Hell yeah!

Man, it’s hot out there! Too hot. I knew it was going to be a very tough task to take the subway from Harlem down and across to Union Square for the farmers market, but I took my man-pill and did it. And, boy, did it pay off.

The farmers market was so boss today. There was an abundance of everything, and I didn’t even get there early for the morning rush. It should have been leftovers-town by the time I made it there, but there was still SO much to choose from. It blew my mind.

Why go to the farmers market? Isn’t it a bunch of farming hippies who will try to make you read Kerouac and sing Hare Krishna? (Actually, there are hippies that dance around and sing Hare Krishna, but they’re off to the side.) I digress!

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Red, White, and Blue Cheese Burgers!

This is what I had for breakfast today:

This is Amurika, and it’s the 4th of July. Hell yeah, I had a burger at 8:30 am.

Now, since I’m not on a diet, there is no such thing as breaking the rules. There is no “cheat day.” Every day, I live my life and try make the best choices I can (while not being a total downer about it.) The boyfriend and I, rather than using “self-control” and feeling deprived, get creative and excited about how to make awesome food that is packed with the best nutritional value possible.

Here’s how Chef B’Friend made our Guilt-Free Red, White, and Blue Cheese Veggie Burgers:

Ingredients:

  • Dr. Praeger’s Meatless All American Burger (I usually like to make my own veggie-burger patties out of nuts, but it’s a holiday! Let’s live a little!)
  • Sprouted Whole Grain Burger Buns by Food for Life. Or just find something that has some kind of seed (sesame) and no high-fructose corn syrup.
  • Lettuce (I’m telling you, grow it or get it from the farmers market. It’s SO good.)
  • Tomato (Farmers market, organic, and/or heirloom… there is nothing worse than a flavorless tomato from PathMart.)
  • Onion
  • Avocado
  • Vegenaise (Don’t use regular Mayo. I swear you won’t even miss it!)
  • Organic Ketchup (no high-fructose corn syrup)
  • Mustard
  • Home-made Cole Slaw (red cabbage, green cabbage, carrots, olive oil, lemon, white wine vinegar, capers, and Vegenaise.)
  • Blue Cheese (Only a little… the flavor is intense!)
  • Pickle Chips (Optional. Try to get a natural pickle without that horrible “Yellow 5” ingredient.)

How to cook it:

  1. Whack the patties on the pan (Olive Oil the pan beforehand with heat.) IMG_0143
  2. Chop the veggies.IMG_0145
  3. Prepare the bottom bun with Vegenaise, ketchup, mustard, onions, and pickles.
  4. Once patties are browning on both sides, pop some blue cheese on them for a few minutes.
  5. Take patties out of the pan and place them on the bun party you’ve created. IMG_0144
  6. Add avocado, lettuce, and the rest of the fillers in-between the patty and the top bun.
  7. Plate and garnish with a simple salad and some potato wedges.
  8. Sing “God Bless America” and eat.

Happy Independence Day! Let’s all be healthy and safe while we watch fireworks explode into the atmosphere.

(follow Chef B’Friend’s Instagram to see all the amazing things he makes/I eat.)

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Tweet-a-deetle-deet!

Whoop, whoop! We got the Twitter! Click the bird to visit us!
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We’ve got Instagram! We’ve got Facebook! We’re Socially Acceptable!

Hey, kids! We’re growing up!

Come play with me on Instagram! I’ll share inspirational pictures you can feel free to share and pin, and I’ll also post healthy homemade (by my boyfriend, mostly) food that looks so good, you’ll want to lick your screen.

Click below to…

Instagram

Like Death to Dieting on Facebook, where I’ll post exclusive content and get to interact with anyone who has questions or comments.

Death To Dieting

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