GymBoss giveaway over at Mom to Marathon!

I've been wanting--no--NEEDING one of these. I usually have to resort to my phone's stopwatch feature which is very aggravating.
Enter the giveaway for a GymBoss here: http://lisasepiphany.blogspot.com/2011/09/high-intensity-interval-training-hiit.html#more


Antioxidantly sweet salad: beets 'n berries!

I had no idea beets and (blue)berries went so well together. Tossed with some sweet sungold cherry tomatoes and lacinato kale, drizzled with some balsamic and BAM! It's a flavorful, sweet explosion on your mouth! This is definitely a new thing for me. I loathed beets growing up until I tried a raw beet salad at a restaurant in Brevard, North Carolina last month when I was visiting my family. The beets tasted....awesome. I was surprised. So I picked up some local lacinato kale (I needed a change from curly), sungold 'maters and beets for myself at the Olympia Farmer's Market.

Next time I'm going to throw in some fresh blackberries. I certainly have enough of those right now.


Cilantro lime quinoa

Same food, a different taste. You'll see a pattern here at my blog. My personal favorite super foods: quinoa, kale, avocado, tomatoes, garlic and so on. There are so many variations available with fresh, whole foods. You may remember Quinoa fresh-Mex medley (a salad, a wrap filler or chip dip!). I've tried a new variation with mostly the same ingredients except the dressing. This time it's cilantro lime vinaigrette! I'm going to play with it some more to get it just to my liking, but it's very close. I wasn't totally sold on it the first day, but after the dish marinaded overnight, it was awesome!

1 C dry quinoa (red or white)
2 1/2 C water
1 can black or kidney beans
a few large leaves kale, chopped
1/2 large granny smith apple, diced
tomato, diced
1 large carrot, shredded
1 avocado, diced
green or red onion, chopped
opt: red bell pepper, diced

Simmer quinoa in 2 C water for 20 minutes or until fully cooked (you'll see the tiny spirals everywhere!). Meanwhile, blanch kale in 1/2 C water in a large wok. It literally takes only seconds till kale is deep green, then remove. Squeeze remaining water out of the kale and add kale and all prepped veggies in a bowl and set aside.

Cilantro lime vinaigrette

Juice of 2 limes
1T white vinegar
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
1T maple syrup
1 clove garlic
1/4 t salt
3/4 t whole grain dijon mustard
1/2 C olive oil

Add all ingredients in a food processor and let it run till smooth and even in texture. Pour over quinoa and vegetables, toss and let sit overnight. The avocados will stay fresh because of the lime, so no browning avocado worries! Enjoy!

Simple and filling: avocado mango smoothie

My 16 month old little man loathes avocado. He's complete opposite of his sister, who loved avocado (it was her first food at 13 months old) and still loves it. I've had to resort to trickery to get this healthy fat into my boy. I made him an avocado mango smoothie that he promptly devoured and looked oh-so-cute devouring it. For any of you mamas having a hard time getting certain good foods down their kiddo's gullet, the blender is your friend.

Creamy avocado mango smoothie
1 fresh ripe mango
1/2 banana
1 avocado
enough milk (or water) to blend it all up
optional healthy additives: greens (kale or spinach), chia seed

Blend it all up and serve. The texture is divinely smooth. I didn't add the "healthy additives" in this one since my main goal was to get the avocado in little man's belly. Simple yet filling. Sometimes simplicity is a nice change.


Chocolate avocado wild blackberry no bake pie

I made this today and WOW! This is just too good not to try. The crust itself is to die for! The fact that it's a no bake pie is awesome! It's easy to do as long as you have a food processor! The original recipe came from Vegweb.com. However, I changed the recipe slightly. No time to lose; check it out!

Chocolate avocado wild blackberry (almost raw) no bake pie


2 cups pecans, divided
5 soft dates, pitted
3 TB chia seeds, soaked in 2 TB warm water
1 TB maple syrup
2 TB cocoa powder (made by blending a small handful of carob chips)
1 TB cinnamon
2 tsp ground fresh nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract, optional
pinch sun dried sea salt

2-3 ripe avocados
2-3 C fresh or wild picked frozen blackberries
2 TB lemon juice (this keeps the avocados from browning)
1 tsp vanilla extract
Approximately 4 C dark chocolate chips
Optional: fresh strawberries, cherries or blackberries to top


1. For crust, soak 1 cup pecans in 2 cups fresh water for 20 minutes (if you can allow for 2-4 hours, that would be better, but 20 minutes works for on-the-fly!). Drain and rinse. In a food processor, chop 1 cup dry pecans into a fine meal. Set aside. Chop soaked pecans into a fine meal.

2. Cut or break the dates into pieces. If the dates are very dry or firm, soak them in 1/2 cup fresh water for 5 minutes to soften. Add the date pieces, chia seeds, maple syrup, carob, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, and sea salt to the ground soaked pecans and chop until well mixed.

3. Add the ground dry pecans and chop until well mixed. The dough should be crumbly but sticky enough to hold shape when pressed. Press the dough evenly into a pie plate; it is easiest to press the dough first to the sides of the plate and then press into the bottom for an even depth.

4. For filling, in a blender, cream together avocados, lemon juice, and vanilla. In a double broiler, melt chocolate chips; let chocolate cool slightly. I cooled it quickly by adding in the frozen blackberries that I had picked the previous day.

5. Add melted chocolate/blackberry mix to the avocado mixture and blend until smooth. Top with fruit berries of choice. Pour into prepared crust and chill in fridge for approximately 30-60 minutes to let solidify before serving.


Sauteed tempeh quinoa wrap

Today's lunch was so rockin', I just had to post a couple pictures and the recipe, which is so easy peasy and quick, it's ridiculous! Even my carnivorous father liked it!

The ingredients:
A couple of whole grain tortilla wraps (I use Ezekiel 4:9 sprouted grain wraps)
Hummus of your likin' (enough to slather on the wrap; not much)
Cooked quinoa (only enough to stick on top of the hummus, so not much is needed--I had some leftover from last night's beans 'n quinoa; I left it cold for this.)
Tempeh, sliced
1/3 C sliced yellow onion
1 C packed chopped kale
1/2 avocado, sliced
sesame oil for sauteing
splash of soy sauce (or Nama Shoyu, Bragg's Liquid Aminos; I did not have these as options since I'm out of town.)
1-2 TB minced garlic
handful mushrooms
sliced red and/or green bell pepper

In a medium skillet using medium heat, saute the tempeh in the sesame oil and soy sauce. Saute until slightly crunchy and done on both sides. Set aside. Saute onion in the same thing (less oil and sauce will be needed, so don't overdo it) until almost translucent. Add in the kale and continue to saute until the kale is bright green and still holds it's shape, being sure not to overdo it (it wilts quickly). Remove from heat. Slather the hummus and quinoa onto your wrap, then pile on the avo, tempeh, and grilled goodies. Voila! So good! I didn't have any fresh minced garlic at my disposal, but I highly recommend adding that in too! I chased this down with a shot of coconut water/mango/lemon/chia gel!


Homemade energy gel

I know, I know. It looks like...poo. But it doesn't taste like it looks, I promise!

Carob Energy Gel


  • 2 large dates, pitted
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup or honey
  • 1 Tbsp ground chia seeds
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp carob chips
  • Sea salt, to taste


Blend all ingredients together to the consistency of gel.

So I saw this recipe and just had to try it! It turned out really good, except for it was far too sweet for my taste buds. I did make some changes to the original recipe as you can see, as I do for most recipes I try. I substituted cocoa nibs for carob chips and agave nectar for maple syrup. (The verdict is still out on agave and it's similarities to high fructose corn syrup, so I ditched agave over a year ago and have stuck with maple syrup and honey as my go-to sweeteners.) However, the flavor is really, really tasty. The lemon adds a perfect zing to the other flavors. I can't wait to try this again and change it up even more. This would be a great pick-me-up during the sluggish time of day or before a run/workout!