Foraged Summer Feast

mushroom harvestWe’re into August already, but this weekend was the first one that really felt like summer. Our good friends Jill and Joe came up for a visit, and reminded us of the pure joy that can only be found in a full day with absolutely nothing to do.

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We took a long nature walk, talked about our dreams for the future, and ate really, really good food.
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During our walk in the woods, they showed us how to look for coral and oyster mushrooms. We harvested them and added them to our CSA chanterelles and black trumpets. We then paired them with our new favorite pasta recipe, good Pecorino Romano, fresh heirloom tomatoes and basil.

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Oh, and big goblets of Wild Sumac Margaritas!

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This dinner was the perfect nod to summer’s bounty. I insist you find some good mushrooms, good friends, good tequila, and make this immediately before summer starts to disappear.

 

Foraged Summer Feast

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Farmers Market Smoothie

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We got back from our whirlwind adventure in Sri Lanka and Vietnam a little over a week ago. It was spectacular. We climbed 5th century AD kingdoms, saw ALL the buddhas (and brought one home!) and ate the most amazing, other-worldly good food.

And while some of the food we ate was fresh and green and full of nutrients…

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…many other things we ate were fried, or ice cream, or filled with additives (protip: NEVER eat the airplane food, especially the meat. Bring your own snacks.)

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Spice up your Thanksgiving Game

Don’t get me wrong- I’m all about the classics. What would Thanksgiving be without the turkey (or tofurkey), the creamy mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing, green beans with the crispy fried onions on top, and ALL the pie? (Answer: regular weeknight dinner.) But every year, it’s fun to bring one new dish to the table to see if it’s a hit.

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This is Trevor and my first Thanksgiving as hosts. We’re cooking our very first turkey (thank you Uncle Sandy for the patient step-by-step brining instructions!), dealing with our first Thanksgiving time table (thank you Bon Appétit!) and cleaning the house like mad people. Our table is small with just one guest, but we’re still loading it up with tons of traditional fare plus this new favorite recipe.Read More »

Four Ways to Fight the Flu

I’ve been sick as a dog this past week!

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Not that dog- she’s pretty happy and healthy.

It’s November 10th and we’re in the thick of flu season. Coworkers are falling like flies around us- myself included.

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Make sure you’ve got your best defenses up with these natural remedies:

Get your Z’s! 

You’ve heard it before- here’s why it’s important. When you sleep, your immune system lets out cytokines, or certain proteins. You need more cytokines when you’re sick to help fight infection, so you need to up your sleep. Even just a 20 minute nap during the day can give your body a protein boost.

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Amp up your veggie game

You’re looking to get vitamins A, C, and zinc into your diet. Reach for sweet potatoes, pumpkin, carrots, spinach, citrus fruits, bell peppers, cauliflower, beans, chickpeas, kale, cashews, and almonds.

Fight stress

Stress can wreak havoc on our physical and mental wellness. Sleep loss, upset stomach, headaches, nausea, depression, muscle pains, and over/under eating can all be symptoms of stress. This is a great time of year to take up yoga or meditation, learn a breathing exercise, work on your fitness routine, or schedule more time to hang out with friends -even if they’re just the furry kind.

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Try not to fight stress with other crutches- alcohol, junk food, TV. These may provide temporary relief but only add to your stress in the long run.

Lay off the sugar

I know you don’t want to hear it- the holidays are just around the corner! Hot cocoa, candy canes, cakes, pie, truffles, COOKIES.

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I don’t want to hear it either. Anyone who knows me knows I have a pretty big sweet tooth. But sugar can cause serious wreckage to your immune system. Here’s why:

“Sugar has been shown to inhibit the immune system by preventing movement of white blood cells, your immune cells, to the area of infection. Sugar also prevents a particular type of white blood cell from eating up viruses and other bugs to manage infection.” -Today Integrative Health + Wellenss.

Limit your sweets- they should really be an occasional treat, not an every day guarantee. Keeping a food journal or using an app like Lift is a great way to keep tabs on your cravings. Many recipes can be modified to use half the sugar recommended and still be delicious, or you can try subbing in natural sweeteners like bananas, raw honey, or berries.

What are your go-to tricks for staying healthy during the colder months? Leave a comment below.