Nourish yourself this year!

Start off the year right. You owe it to yourself to nourish your body with fresh delicious food and your mind with the satisfaction that you can make the choice to be the best YOU this year. Make the right choices now, or else January will pass by to quickly. Then in February… well no one feels like starting anything new in February. Then March comes and you tell yourself you may as well wait until the spring or summer to start eating right or getting in shape or going on a cleanse. Well I am telling you that if you start right now, by the summertime you will already be looking and feeling great!

So the key is to get yourself motivated today. Start up a new exercise program and fill your kitchen full of healthy choices. You may even want to take a COOKING CLASS (see side column for details) or two, get yourself loaded with health supportive and tasty recipes to get you on your way – just email me if that is your plan!
I am also offering a WHOLE FOOD MAKEOVER WORKSHOP series starting next week that should definitely get you on your path to good health and well being. Sometimes you just need a little push in the right direction to get you on your way.
But if you are the type that just wants to do it yourself, then let me at least give you a few tips to get 2009 to YOUR best and most nourishing year ever!

1. Choose fresh and whole foods everyday
2. Choose organic and bio-dynamic foods as often as possible
3. Choose food that is fresh, local and seasonal
4. Choose foods that are colourful, vibrant and that vary in texture, flavour and shapes (this is great for kids too!)
5. Experiment cooking with different grains, legumes, vegetables and spices for variety
6. Limit your consumption of fried, processed, packaged and sugar laden foods
7. Limit your consumption of commercial meat and dairy (instead select naturally raised or organic whenever possible)
8. Start up a new exercise program, even if that means taking a walk around your block!
9. Find alternative methods for relaxation, healing and rejuvenation (massage therapy, aroma therapy, acupuncture, tai chi, yoga and pilates).
10. Have Fun!

Quinoa with Porcini Mushrooms and Dried Cranberries

Ingredients:

1-cup quinoa
2 cups water or vegetable broth
Salt
1 ounce (3/4 cup) dried porcini mushrooms
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ cup minced red onion
1 garlic clove
1 stalk celery
1 cup chopped fresh spinach
1 cup dried cranberries or currents
½ toasted pinenuts or pecans
Freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley or thyme

Procedure:

1. Rinse quinoa and place in large pot and dry toast on a low heat for a few minutes. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil with salt. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
2. Combine 1 cup of water with porcini mushrooms in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and let the mushrooms soak for 20 minutes. Then drain the mushrooms, reserving the mushrooms and the liquid separately. Roughly chop the mushrooms.
3. Warm the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and celery and cook until the vegetables are soft, about 7 minutes. At the last minute add the spinach.
4. Add the reserved mushrooms, the garlic, and the cranberries and sauté until the cranberries are heated through about 2 minutes.
5. Add the pinenuts, quinoa, salt and black pepper to taste, and the mushroom soaking liquid. Cook until the liquid has been absorbed, about 2 minutes. Stir in the chopped parsley and serve hot.