Monthly Archives: November 2014

Apple Pie Protein Smoothie


Apple pie protein smoothie

Are you needing a little post holiday detox?

I’m committed to maintaining or losing weight between Halloween and New Years.  I have had great success in the past by substituting one meal a day with a protein drink. Here’s a tasty apple pie shake with no added sugar. Enjoy and take the pledge to Maintain,  Not Gain!


Apple Pie Protein Smoothie

  • Servings: 1 generous
  • Time: 2 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

• 2 scoops vanilla protein powder, DESIGNER WHEY 100% Premium Whey Protein Powder, French Vanilla, 32 Ounce Container

1/2 frozen banana
1/2 apple
1 cup almond milk or any milk
1 cup water
Cinnamon and nutmeg to taste

Combine all ingredients in a powerful mixer.
I love my Vitamix Vitamix 5200 Series Blender, Black

I also like the Ninja Ninja Mega Kitchen System (BL771)

Turkeys, Turkeys and more Turkeys

I hope you enjoy these beautiful turkey photos. Even my vegetarians friends can appreciate these live turkeys for Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Enjoy. Thanks Judi for sharing your turkeys.

A tradition in my family has always been centered around the turkey we have on Thanksgiving.  As a matter of fact we are very traditional!  There is always turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing, homemade rolls, and even green bean casserole.  The pumpkin pies always shine at our holiday table along with many different kinds of cookies.  We gradually started to add new dishes – still having the usual but adding different pies and sides in addition to the regular. Sausage stuffing and creamed corn casserole has been popular or adding pecan and apple pies to the dessert table.

I have to admit I did try a wild turkey once, and only once.  I did not care for it as there was an occasional buckshot in the meat!  My son-in-law is an avid hunter and so is his Dad.  I think his Dad contributed the wild…

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Vegetarian Barley and Feta Stuffed Peppers

Vegetarian Barley and Feta Stuffed Peppers

Vegetarian stuffed peppers
There must be a million different recipes for stuffed peppers and everyone has their favorite ingredients. Barley is a whole grain and it tastes wonderful in any vegetarian meal. Peppers make perfect little containers to hold meat, veggies, cheeses, and grains. The red peppers are pretty on a plate and impart a delicious roasted pepper taste to the stuffing. You can sneak it any additional vegetables that you like to make these peppers your own.
This may be a nice vegetarian addition to the Thanksgiving meal. Make them a day in advance and then just reheat before dinner since the oven is prime real estate on Thanksgiving. Stuffed peppers are an easy weeknight meal, too. Serve with a salad and fresh fruit for a complete meal. Want more protein? Add cannelli beans or walnuts. Want meat? Replace some of the barley with ground turkey or beef. If you can’t find quick cooking barley then use regular barley but cook it before baking otherwise you will have crunchy little barley stones in your peppers. Vegans you know what to do: Substitute cheese with vegan cheese or skip it entirely.

Vegetarian Barley and Feta Stuffed Peppers

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 40 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

2 red bell peppers
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 carrot chopped finely
1 cup quick cook barley, I used Trader Joe’s brand.
1/2 cup fresh spinach chopped
1 cup low sodium canned diced tomatoes with juice
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning or combine oregano, marjoram, basil, thyme
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
1/2 cup reduced fat feta cheese

1. Pre-heat oven to 375 F
2. Slice peppers in half through the stem and remove seeds.
3. Sauté onions and carrots in olive oil until crisp tender about 10 minutes, add remaining ingredients except the feta and bring to a boil.
4. Fill peppers with barley and sauce. Top with feta.
5. Bake in greased and covered baking dish until soft and golden.

Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Wings : Found Treasures

Check out these cauliflower buffalo wings. A spicy low carb and vegetarian snack. You know you want some. I think you’ll like Bubbles and Booyah too.

Bubbles and booyah

photo 3 (2) Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Wings. My mouth is watering, I want to lick my computer screen. So. Damn. Good.

There is an extremely short list of foods I “miss” as a vegetarian.

  1. Buffalo Wings
  2. Italian Deli Meats (pepperoni, salami, capicola)

There really is no replacement for the deli meats, but that’s okay – I have to Let It Goooo (now you’ll have that Frozen song stuck in your head for the rest of the day – you’re welcome). Buffalo “wings”, however, as a Western New Yorker, I refuse to let go of. Nope – ain’t happenin’. First there were the MorningStar Farms Buffalo Wings that made me want to cry tears of joy when I first saw them in Wegmans when I was in high school – they are good, but not “saucy” enough (and the texture left something to be desired). Then there were the Vegetarian Buffalo Wings (consisting of…

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Putting Your Emergency Contact and Allergies on Your Lock Screen

Please share if you think anyone you love could benefit from making their emergency medical information accessible.

I have some significant allergies and I probably should wear a medical alert bracelet, but I don’t, because I always have my iPhone with me so my medical information is in my phone – which is locked. Duh! How exactly are the cute paramedics going to find that important information? I’m sure that I’m the first person to ever have this brilliant idea and I’m willing to share my light bulb moment with you. Continue reading

Vegetarian Bolognese and Zucchini Noodles, Fiesta Friday

Vegetarian Bolognese

Cutting carbs? Try this delicious vegetarian, low carbohydrate Bolognese over zucchini noodles. The mushrooms lend a nice meaty texture, the sauce is loaded with vegetables and the mascarpone cheese gives it a decadent creamy finish. Zucchini noodles are low in calories and carbohydrates with a pasta mouth feel. I use this Paderno World Cuisine A4982799 Tri-Blade Plastic Spiral Vegetable Slicer spirilizer from Amazon*. This meal can be enjoyed with a fresh Italian salad. You can make it vegan and paleo by substituting a vegan cashew cream. I’m taking this dish to Fiesta Friday hosted by Angie at TheNoviceGardener.

Vegetarian Bolognese

Vegetarian Bolognese

Vegetarian Bolognese

Vegetarian Bolognese

Vegetarian Bolognese

Vegetable Bolognese and Zucchini Noodles

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 60-90 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


Vegetarian Bolognese:
2 medium carrots, coarsely chopped
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 fennel bulb, coarsely chopped
1 stalk celery
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cups chopped assorted mushrooms, such as shiitake, cremini and/or button, stemmed and chopped
1/2 cup dry red wine, such as merlot or cabernet sauvignon
14 oz can diced, no salt tomatoes
1/2 cup mascarpone cheese

2 medium zucchini spirals

Clean and chop all vegetables.
Sauté garlic and onions in olive oil until translucent. Add remaining vegetables and cook until soft about 10 minutes. Add herbs, tomatoes and wine. Simmer 30-60 minutes. I prefer a longer simmer to meld the flavors. Just before ready to serve, add mascarpone cheese and stir until melted and combined. Add zucchini noodles to sauce and simmer 5 minutes to warm noodles but keep crisp tender. Serve with shaved parmesan if desired.

Adapted from





* Affiliate link. I receive a few cents if you make a  purchase.

A Chance To Cut, A Letter To My Son


This is the third in the series of letters to my son the medical student who grew into a surgeon. The letters have helped me renew my commitment to compassionate healthcare and medical education. It is too easy to lose your way as a physician when faced with the daily stress of real medicine. Spending time with the next generation of physicians gives me faith that we will always have a few doctors who stand out as not just competent, but caring healers.

My son is currently a surgical intern. The intern’s life is far from the glamorous stylized Grey’s Anatomy experience. It’s grueling and exhausting. I struggle as I watch him endure his chosen path. As a physician, I know exactly how he feels and I know that he will survive. As a mother, I want to smother him with love, make him sleep more and fix his schedule so that he can have two days off in a row to come home for Christmas. My husband reminds me when I hang up the phone in tears, “Keep the faith. He will be fine. You did it too and you survived.” I know in my heart that he will not only survive residency training but he will thrive. I hope you enjoy my letter and stay tuned for the next letter. “That Which Doesn’t Kill Us Makes Us Stronger or … Leaves Us Bitter and Broken. A Letter to My Son the Intern.”
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