Category Archives: Healthy Living

Meal Plan April 10-16

Writing a meal plan for the week will help you eat healthier foods, save money by eating at home and use the fresh foods that you bought before everything goes to waste (you know you do this, right?) Besides who doesn’t love to be organized even on the laid back Baja?

Some days I can’t even find two flip flops that match, much less think up a fast nutritious meal. Believe me, at 4 pm, I need a plan.

La Gringa Cooks

Snacks and sides:
Roasted beets
Beet greens and Swiss chard
Deviled Easter eggs
Mesclun salad and goat cheese
Almonds
Apple and peanut butter

Roasted Red Pepper Salsa and Pico de Gallo recipes @Salsa Sunday

Recipes coming soon to Whatsfordinnerdoc.com
Loaded cauliflower bake
Taco zucchini boats
Roasted tomatoes, basil pasta
Vegan mushroom tostadas
Seared Yellow tail with mango and ginger

Make a plan to eat real food for your health and happiness.
If you must eat out here are some tips for staying healthy and maintaining your nutrition goals when aren’t at home. Healthy Eating.

La Gringa Cooks: Flips & Flops, Grilled Sweet Potatoes and Peppers

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FLIPS & FLOPS

I’m sure you noticed the new header on What’s for dinner, Doc? Who can resist a pelican? My new series La Grinda Cooks became La Gringa Cooks: Flips & Flops from Baja, Mexico. The title speaks for itself but the idea for the flips & flops came while standing in my kitchen dressed in my kitchen uniform, shorts and you guessed it, flip-flops. Dreaming and waiting for my fresh pepper cheese to form lovely curds and whey, I caught a glimpse of the Sea of Cortez. Ok, to be fair it’s a sliver of blue ocean, if I stand on tip toes and tilt my head at a 45 degree angle south 😎. Anyway I waited and waited and waited. No beautiful curds, no clear whey, just a mess of salted acidic milk.

A Major FLOP. I have had other flops while trying to adapt my culinary skills to the climate, ingredients and flair of Mexican cuisine. So travel with me, summer attire optional, as I explore the best of the flips (hits) and flops (mishaps) in my Baja kitchen.

Now that I’ve peaked your interest and whet your appetite for acidic, salted milky cheese here’s the flop.

When milk does not becomes cheese:

Making quéso fresco is easy and I’ve succeeded many times in the U.S. You can find the recipe here. I purchased readily available pasteurized whole cow’s milk (leche de vaca entera) and white vinegar (vinagre blanco). I finely chopped jalapeño and red bell pepper in anticipation of making Quéso Fresco con Pimientos. The local goat ranchers make a fresh fabulous quéso and I was sure that I could recreate one with cow milk. I followed the directions exactly. The milk partially separated but the curds were minuscule and there was never a clear whey layer. The problem it seems was the milk. Mexican milk has less protein than U.S. milk and that can affect curd yield. The lower protein content makes it difficult to froth the milk for a cappuccino also. The most likely reason for cheese to fail is old milk which is too acidic or the milk has been ultra-pasteurized. The milk didn’t say ultra-pasteurized but who knows, it could have been. When in doubt, blame the milk. Next time I will use fresh goat milk from a local rancher. Stay tuned. I salvaged the thickened milky cheese layer from the sack cloth, added diced jalapeño pepper and red bell pepper and a sauce was born. I turned that flop into a flip with a slight of hand.

 
Finally the Recipe

Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Poblano and Red Bell Pepper

Ingredients:
2 medium to large sweet potatoes (yams)
1 red onion
1 sweet red pepper
1 poblano pepper
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:
Scrub vegetables and sweet potatoes, I leave the peel for more fiber and nutrition. Dice into 1 inch pieces, mix with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Microwave for 5 minutes to soft the potatoes. Grill in a grill basket over medium heat, 350-375F, until soft and slightly charred. Serve plain or drizzle with plain yogurt, la crema, or failed quéso fresco. Eat as a side dish with grilled meat or as a vegetarian entrée by adding legumes, nuts or more dairy to increase the protein content.

Savor every bite and enjoy the journey.
I’m taking this easy side dish to Fiesta Friday where you can find delicious recipes from around the globe.

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December Fitness Tips – Revisited

Holiday challenge:Dance is if no one is watching

Holiday Challenge: Dance as if no one is watching.

Having trouble keeping your Maintain Don’t Gain promise? Maybe these strategies will help.

1) Crank up the holiday music and dance as if no one is watching. Close the drapes just in case. If you need dance ideas then watch RuPaul’s Drag Race, those queens have to “Lip sync and dance for their lives”.

2) Put cat food in your jello salad; a calorie bargain. No, I don’t have the recipe but watch “Christmas Vacation” and Aunt Bethany will show you how’s it’s done.

3) Organize a neighborhood “Griswald Christmas 5K” unless your exterior illumination is subpar then jog by yourself and make snide comments about the neighbors’ electrical bills.

4) Bake cookies in a bikini. It keeps others out of the kitchen while you create and it might limit the number of cookies you eat before they go into the oven. Or it could lead to an interesting extra curricular activity that burns calories too. 😉

5) Eat raw cookie dough. The salmonella infection will result in temporary weight loss if you don’t die. (It’s a joke people, don’t send me hate mail and don’t eat raw eggs because Salmonella is not really funny.)

6) Buy the Zombie Run app for your smart phone and RUN FOR YOUR LIFE! Best done at night because fear burns more calories. (You read it here first)

7) Watch “Four Christmases” and then practice your cage fighting moves on your sister.

8) Aerobic gift wrapping. Drink 3 espressos and get’r done. You know that you aren’t even close to finished. Just do it.

9) Take a vow to only eat food that you have harvested or killed with your bare hands. Also known as a Paleo Diet.

10) Learn to ice skate, the outfits are cute. Hello! The Ice Capades are calling!

 

 

 

 

 

Black Friday Fitness Tips

Black Friday Fitness Tips – Revisited from last year’s Holiday Challenge

Those of you brave enough to tackle the shopping mall on Black Friday will find ample opportunity to improve your fitness level.

Shopping Tips

Here’s a few suggestions.

1) Find a parking spot located farthest from the food court. If it makes your kids scream, “Can we get a cab from here Mom?”, then you know that you’ve found the perfect spot.

2) Seek out the hidden stairs and climb them unless they smell like urine and the lights bulbs are missing, then don’t. You don’t want to be forced to run for your life. Be reasonable, shopping is supposed to be fun. Right?

3) Practice your football moves on the kiosks barkers. “Hey unsuspecting mall shopper, got a minute?” If you hear them coming, begin evasive moves, stat. You don’t need another cell phone case with sequined skull and crossbones or hair extensions that look like rodents. You just don’t!

And what’s with the Dead Sea Anti-aging, Anti-oxidant, Anti-wrinkle Face Regenerating Serum being sold by the gum chewing 12 year old? “But ma’am it’s from the Dead Sea, get it?” Block and pivot. “LADY, YOU SERIOUSLY NEED THIS!” Keep moving and avoid desperate urge to tackle. Continue reading

What’s For Dinner? : Let’s Be Honest

Friends and family often ask, “What do you really eat?” I guess they think that I’m fabricating when I say, “I eat real food, mostly plants, some chicken and lots of fish.” I don’t eat bread, pasta, processed foods or much sugar. (Yes, you can live without simple carbohydrates.) Those of you who know me, know that I’m not perfect. 🙂 I do love a glass or two of wine.

I save my carbohydrate calories for an amazing piece of dessert to share or a square of dark chocolate. If I eat bread it better be spectacular sour dough right out of the oven or to me it isn’t worth eating.

Every day is a reason to celebrate with fresh healthy food, not an excuse to feast on the average American diet of processed foods and sugar.

If you want to feel better then start with eating right.

It works, I promise.

Let’s play a game of What’s for Dinner?

This is actually how I create meals for my family. I buy the freshest, seasonal ingredients so my refrigerator is stocked with vegetables, fruits, lean meats and fish. The secret of course is to actual eat the produce that you buy. 😉

Here’s what’s in the house

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Tomatoes
Italian squash
Eggplant
Red and orange peppers
Basil
Chicken breast or tofu
Olive oil
Any herbs or spices you like

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This is how I play the dinner game.

Pick a cuisine

Italian, Mexican, Indian, American, Fusion

Now add your spices
Italian – basil, oregano, garlic
Indian – ginger, turmeric, curry blends
Mexican – jalapeños, chili powder, cumin
Fusion- Any herb or spice will do. It’s your palette, mix any flavors that appeal to you.

Bake it, sauté it, braise it, or grill it

What will you make for dinner?
Stay tuned and I’ll show you what I made for dinner in my next post.

 

Pimp Your Veg part 2: spices are your friend! 

More veggie magic from Elaine @FoodBod. Its all about the spice, ’bout the spice.

foodbod

If you have ever read any of my blog then you know that I love spices; these beautifully coloured aromatic powders have the power to not only nourish and heal our bodies, but to completely change any meal.

Just a teaspoon of the right spice can take a dish from bland to grand!

When it comes to embracing vegetables and learning to add more of them to your meals, I think spices are your secret weapon. You can bring all the flavours you love to your plate via your vegetables and make them sing.

Likewise you can use dried herbs, but for me, it’s all about spices, that’s where I would begin…and again, I know that lots of you use spices regularly and know far more than me about them, so please pass this onto to anyone you think might find it useful 🙂

Please keep in mind, this is…

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Share a Coke With “Obesity”

The medical community is unhappy with Coke for funding bogus research to prove that Coke is good for your health. The folks at Center for Science of the Public Interest produced a YouTube video showing how Coke refuses to #ShareHonesty about their products.

Please go to the ShareACoke.com website and submit your honest label for Coke.

Share a Coke with
Obesity, Childhood Obesity, Diabetes, Heart Diseases, Tooth Decay