Black Bean Brownies: FOX News Cooking Segments

Beans: the often overlooked “Super-Food”


BEANS are THE highest fiber food in our “whole food” repertoire (natural and not man-made like Fiber one bars). They are high in protein, 16g per cup. They are a very, very slowly digested source of energy yielding carbohydrates; perfect for people with blood sugar issues such as Diabetics.
Beans lower cholesterol, naturally, not because man added something to them. They are high in antioxidants that protect the body from cancer. They aid in weight loss on so many levels, from increasing satiety to lowering leptin levels. 1 ¼ cups of cooked beans provides as much protein as 3 ounces chicken for 1/4th the cost and 2 ½ times more volume. That volume and the super-antioxidant content, plus half of your daily fiber needs, are what makes beans a “Super-Food.” Add to that the fact that beans promote weight loss while allowing you to eat more calories. In a study comparing bean eaters to non-bean eaters, the bean eaters lost 7 pounds more and ate 200 calories more than the non-bean eaters.
The protein in beans is not complete but when you eat whole grains, or other complete proteins throughout the day, your body has what it needs to make complete proteins. In the brownie recipe, we have eggs to make a complete protein. In the shake we have the milk and in the black bean and quinoa mango salad, we have the quinoa to help complete the protein for your body.

When using beans as protein source in the shake, you get the protein you would get from a protein powder but you get so much more, such as Manganese, Magnesium, Copper, Iron, Zinc, All of your B vitamins except B12 plus extra Calcium, Potassium and Omega-3 fats. You don’t get any of that from protein powder and you save $0.37 per serving. The protein shake with beans costs only $0.70 for a 15oz serving.

Black Bean Brownies
Makes 20 servings – Ready in 1 hour

2 cans black beans, drained
6 eggs
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup cocoa
1 cup chocolate chips
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

9×12 inch baking pan

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Oil baking pan.
Puree all ingredients, except the chocolate chips, in a food processor until you reach a smooth consistency.
Pour batter into baking pan. Disperse the chips evenly over top of the batter.
Bake for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
Best if refrigerated overnight.
Cut into 20 squares

Cost per serving: $0.51
Nutrients per serving (1 piece, 53g):  Calories: 141, Total Fats: 5 g, Total Carbohydrates: 19 g, Dietary Fiber: 4 g, Protein: 5 g 

% Daily Value
17% manganese
14% copper
12% magnesium
10% phosphorus
  9% iron
  8% selenium
  8% folate
  6% riboflavin, niacin & potassium
  5% zinc

Mango Bean Smoothie
Makes 1 serving – Ready in 5 minutes

1/2 cup white beans (such as navy or pinto)
1/2 mango, rough chopped
1 cup lowfat milk (any type)
2 Tbsp coconut, shredded, unsweetened 
6 mint leaves
4-6 ice cubes, add gradually

Throw everything in a blender and blend. Add ice gradually until your reach a desired consistency.

Cost per serving: $0.70
Nutrients per serving (1 shake/ 2 cups):  Calories: 350, Total Fats: 6 g, Omega-3 fats: 110 mg, Sodium: 140 mg, Total Carbohydrates: 55g, Dietary Fiber: 9 g, Sugars: 27g, Protein: 19g 

% Daily Value (DV)
Manganese:     36%
Calcium:          35%
Potassium:      28%
Vitamin D:       25%
Vitamin A:       20%
Vitamin C:      13%
Copper:           11%
Iron:                18%
Selenium:          4%
Magnesium:    17%
Phosphorus:    17%
Vitamin-E:         2%
Niacin:             10%
B-6:                    7%
Riboflavin:         4%
Zinc:                   8%
Folate:               31%
Thiamin-B1:    18%
B-12:                  0%

Black Bean, Quinoa & Mango Salad
Makes 1 serving – Ready in 10 minutes

1/2 cup black beans
1/2 cup cooked quinoa
1/2 mango, diced
1/2 red pepper, diced
1 Tbsp chopped cilantro
Juice of 1/2 lime
1 tsp flax oil
Sea salt & pepper to taste

Per serving: 314 calories, 54g carbs, 11g protein, 6g fat, 245% DV vitamin C, 76% vitamin A, 11-45% for all vitamins and minerals except vitamin D, B12 and calcium.


Kicking the Craving Habit

We have all been plagued by food cravings at some point in our lives. We can’t help it, we’re born to crave. It’s part of survival. At birth we crave sweet because mother’s milk is sweet, and high in fat, so when we taste sweet, we associate sweetness with energy, both immediate and stored fuel. But even when we are old enough to make more cognizant choices, often times those inherent tendencies kick in, especially during times of stress. If we are stressed, either because of a deadline, because we skipped a meal or because we exercised and didn’t eat enough, our survival mechanisms will kick in and we reach for quick-fix sugar sources to feed our brain, and high fat foods to provide long-term storage. We also grab for fatty foods because their texture offers a soothing mouthfeel that is learned. High fat foods are high on the hedonic, “pleasure seeking” food scale.

Statics show that 97% of women & 68% of men experience food cravings, 40% of women and 15% of men crave chocolate. Low levels of serotonin, a “feel good” hormone, has been associated with food cravings. Some experts also believe that cravings are your body’s way of trying to take in lacking nutrients, aside from sugar and fat, your body also uses a lot of vitamins and minerals during times of stress or during strenuous activity. Some of the nutrients our body seeks during times of stress include the B vitamins, prevalent in carbohydrate rich foods, but not in highly processed carb sources. Magnesium is another “nutrient” we crave during stress. Many experts speculate that we crave chocolate because it is a good source of magnesium. But spinach, is even higher when you compare ounce for ounce. And one cup of cooked spinach (about 8 cups raw) is only 53 calories whereas one cup of chocolate is 863 calories. If magnesium is what you are truly craving, then you’d better learn to head the signs and load up on spinach or you’ll be buying new clothes every season and not necessarily because you are so fashion conscious.

Other high magnesium foods include all leafy greens, beans, nuts (especially brazil nuts, cashews, almonds and pumpkin seeds) as well as brown rice, barley, quinoa and dates.

To help you overcome your cravings, keep nutrient dense snack options on hands at all times. Fresh fruit, especially crunchy apples and sweet berries can easily offset your desire for less nutritious options, plus they add disease fighting antioxidants and fiber. Cut up veggies such as cucumbers, carrots and celery and creamy dip made with Greek yogurt will please your palate for creamy, fatty foods, while adding calcium, protein and fiber rich, water rich, low calorie crunch that beats the butt of any potato chip; baked, whole grain or whatever marketing tactic comes along. If nature made it, it’s made to eat, if man made it, RETREAT!

If you really have a chocolate craving, some experts recommend small pieces of dark chocolate, but when you’re truly hungry, your body wants volume and one little 1/2 inch square will not suffice. Instead, try my Aphrodisiac salad that incorporates spicy arugula with sweet berries, zinc rich pine nuts, sweet balsamic vinaigrette dressing, and rich, dark chocolate shaved over top. It’s an unusual combination that satisfies so many senses and can even sublimate for “something” missing, which is another reason we often “crave,” as a substitute for “affection.”

As a final offering, I also recommend simple frozen grapes and an ounce of mixed nuts. Use a portion-friendly container for calorie dense snacks such as nuts. A one cup serving of frozen grapes and a one ounce serving of mixed nuts has 150 fewer calories than a cup of ice cream plus at least 10-20% of all of your essential minerals and most of your vitamins. Ice cream has little to offer besides your daily allotment of saturated fat.

Crispy Kale Chips
Makes 1 serving – Ready in 20 minutes

One bunch kale, dinosaur or curly
2 tsp canola or other high heat oil
Dash of sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash and dry the kale with paper towels. Use kitchen shears or a knife to remove ribs and cut kale into 2 inch pieces. Toss in a bowl with oil and sea salt. Place on 2 large baking trays lined with parchment paper. Bake 10-15 minutes or until edges are slightly browned.

2. Remove the kale chips from the oven. Enjoy!

Nutrients per serving (1 bunch):  Calories: 194, Total Fats: 10 g, Total Carbohydrates: 20 g, Dietary Fiber: 4 g, Protein: 6 g
Daily Value: 400% vitamin C, 180% vitamin A, 10-30% for every other vitamin & mineral except B12, vitamin D, Selenium & Zinc

Savory Greek yogurt dip
Makes 1 serving – Ready in 5 minutes

1/2 cup Greek yogurt, plain, fat-free
Juice & zest of 1/2 lemon
1 Tbsp fresh chopped dill
1/8 tsp (dash) garlic powder

Mix everything together in a small bowl. Serve with your favorite sliced vegetables such as carrots, celery, peppers and cucumbers.

Per serving: 68 calories, 7g carbs, 10g protein, 0g fat, 25% DV for vitamin C, 13% DV for calcium

Aphrodisiac Salad
Makes 1 serving – Ready in 10 minutes

2 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp flax oil
2 tsp honey
2 cups arugula (arugula’s peppery flavor complements the sweetness of the berries, much like the perfect couple—sweet & spicy)
1/2 cup blackberries
1/2 cup raspberries
1 Tbsp pine nuts
1/4 oz dark chocolate

In a large single serving salad bowl, pour in equal portions of apple cider vinegar, olive oil and honey. Mix with a fork. Add two big handfuls of arugula. Toss with dressing. Add 1/2 cup each of Blackberries and Raspberries. Squeeze some lemon juice onto the salad, just enough to sprinkle with flavor and extra antioxidants. The lemon helps to pull together flavors similar to salt but acts as a diuretic, unlike salt. Sprinkle with pine nuts and shaved dark chocolate. Cut slivers using a sharp knife or a microplane. Apply just enough chocolate to decorate the salad. A little goes a long way to perfectly compliment the flavors of the sweet berries and spicy greens.
Per serving: 290 calories, 16g heart healthy fats, 36g carbs, 9g fiber, 5g protein.

Other winning nutrients include 73% of your Daily Value for Vitamin C– perfect for protecting the immune system of both you and your loved on, 25% of the Daily Value for Vitamin A- obtained from those ever loving, visual protectors known as carotenoids. 15% of the Daily Value for that essential, oxygen transporting nutrient known as Iron (typically found in highest concentrations in animal products). Plus 11 % of the Daily Value for Bone Building Calcium and even more if you add a touch of creamy goat cheese. This salad contains a significant amount of every Vitamin & Mineral (10% or more) except for Vitamin D & B12 – you may want to eat it while standing in the sun for 15 minutes a day to get your D & perhaps accompanied by some poached chicken or fish for some B12 & extra protein. Best of all, this salad contains a variety of tastes, textures and colors all indicating a wide range of disease fighting, antioxidant nutrients.

Although one might think an Aphrodisiac Salad should be savored only in pairs, this salad can be eaten and enjoyed absolutely anytime your heart desires. To protect your heart & increase your energy, you also get 2,660mg of ALA omega-3 fatty acids from the flax oil. Omega-3 fats make every part of your body work better. You and your loved one will thank me forever.

The Kitchen Vixen Interview on Talk Jog Run


Interview on www.WalkJogRun.net

TalkJogRun by WalkJogRun : 
Interview with The Kitchen Vixen, WalkJogRun’s recipe blogger
Caitlin Seick: TalkJogRun Host
Intro—Welcome to TalkJogRun! My name is Caitlin of WalkJogRun.net.  Today we’re here with Elizabeth Brown, the one and only, Kitchen Vixen.  You may know Elizabeth from the delicious recipes she provides for WalkJogRun members.  She has a high list of qualifications, and is a registered dietician. 
1.      Hi Elizabeth! Thanks for being on the show with us today! How are you? Hi Caitlin, I’m great thank you. And Thank you for having me on your show.
2.      It’s great to have you! Tell us what made you decide to go to school for nutrition? My first year out of high school I worked as a trainer at a local gym. I’d gotten into fitness when my French teacher, who was also the powerlifting coach, convinced me to join the powerlifting team. That was in 1986. When I worked at the gym, I heard all of the trainers giving different advice and I just didn’t believe any of them because they couldn’t explain the rational for their advice. I decided to go to school for nutrition so I could learn the science and educate the public. 
3.      You didn’t stop with just your dietician license.  Why did you see it necessary to get your diabetes educator certificate, and weight management certificate? To become a Registered Dietitian, or RD, you first get your Bachelor of Science or Master of Science in Nutrition. I have both. After you get your Bachelor’s degree in Nutrition, then you apply for a clinical internship to earn the hours to study and sit for your RD exam. So it’s typically a 5 year process. I got my Master’s degree while working fulltime and then I did my master’s thesis which made it 3 years total. When I became a Certified Diabetes Educator, I had to accumulate 2000 counseling hours working with Diabetic patients and I had to take at least 2 years to accumulate those hours. I actually had all of my hours in one year but I couldn’t take the exam until after the second year. Now it’s 1000 hours in 1 year. I worked at a Diabetes Center for 5 years and spent about half my time counseling patients with diabetes and the other half counseling patients for weight management and other chronic diseases.  But to be a Certified Weight Management Specialist, you only had to study for and take the certification exam. To get any of these credentials though, you must be a Registered Dietitian and not a Nutritionist. Anyone can call themselves a nutritionist with little to no formal education. RD’s have at least a Bachelor’s or a Master’s degree in Nutrition.
4.      When did you start blogging at TheKitchenVixen.com?  Actually, the name came about in 1998 when I did a Men’s Health interview with Greg Gutfeld. He came up with the it. In 2006 I started writing for the Santa Monica Daily Press Newspaper as The Kitchen Vixen. That’s when I started posting my articles on my website. 
5.      Where does the inspiration for your recipes come from? Many of my creations have come out of necessity, to fuel my body and to use whatever fresh foods I have on hand. I always try to create recipes that are as nutrient dense as possible. I’m not a big supplement person and I do believe you can meet most of your nutrient needs with food if you eat foods that are nutrient dense and leave out foods that have little to offer besides calories. I have learned that I am severely gluten intolerant so the recipes I create nowadays are gluten free. 
6.      Your recipes contain a lot of organic ingredients.  In your opinion, is it necessary to buy the organic food and produce?  Why or why not? I read one study that said that if you tell people to only eat organic foods and they either don’t have access to organic foods or don’t have to money to spend on these foods, then they feel overwhelmed and are unlikely to make any healthful choices. So, with that being said, I would tell people to buy organic produce if it is local, accessible and affordable and if not, to simply choose as much fresh produce as possible and limit processed foods. If given a choice, choose local produce over produce from far away. If fresh isn’t an option, frozen is completely acceptable. If choosing processed foods, choose the option with the shortest ingredient list and with the list of recognizable, whole food ingredients. 
7.      What’s the best nutrition fact that you learned in school? That you need vitamin C to help you absorb iron. But if the iron is from red meat or dark meat chicken, for example, you can absorb it as is because it’s in the same form it will be in in the body. But overall, I’d say, just learning the science of nutrition which helps me to discern and disseminate the nutrition information that some people just spew out without thinking. With my understanding I have the tools to explain the science of nutrition to the general public.
8.      What are some of the best items that busy people can make that don’t have too much time to cook? I think soup is one of the best categories of foods that everyone should learn how to prepare. You only need a few hours once a week to shop for and prepare a delicious homemade soup that you can enjoy throughout the week or even freeze for future weeks. Also, juices and smoothies. Everyone should have a good blender. Because you can really bolster your nutrition and make quick meal replacement drinks by just literally throwing some things in a blender. At the very least, everyone should know how to make eggs, bake fish, prepare brown rice, quinoa or sweet potatoes and steam fresh vegetables.
9.      You’re a weight management specialist-and there’s so many people who are trying to manage their weight. Including myself, I’m not overweight or anything but I think weight management is sometimes hard to do for anyone.  What are some of the best tips you have for weight management-where does a person start? Start where you are. Know your weight right now. Don’t worry about losing weight, start by learning to maintain the weight you carry at this moment. Then start by looking at what you eat right now. Don’t make any changes until you have an understanding of your present habits. This is the hardest thing for people to do. I don’t do as much private counseling as I used to because I find that no one wants to write down their current eating habits and allow me to analyze them. They just want to be told what to do. But I have to understand where they are coming from and so should they. It’s much more realistic to gradually change current habits than to give them a whole new set of habits that may not coincide with what they are doing right now. Also look at your current activity schedule. Once you have this information about yourself, then start making gradual changes. Start replacing processed carbs with more vegetables and a few whole food carbs such as brown rice, quinoa or sweet potatoes, for example. If you drink soda. Just stop that completely. Cut out sweets and replace with fresh fruit or with herbal tea. Too many of us have a preference for sweetness that we really need to quell. The preference for sweets is a survival mechanism learned at birth. Mother’s milk is sweet so the baby will drink it. The milk is also high in fat so they will get the calorie density they need for their rapid growth. As we get older, we are supposed to crave sweets as a survival mechanism. Our bodies know that sugar is a quick energy source which is essential during high energy demands but most of us don’t have those same “physical” demands. We have emotional demands. That extra sugar is just doing our bodies a disservice by feeding the stress and growing our waistlines. So, in a nutshell, start where you are, learn your habits, cut out sugar and processed carbs, and eat more vegetables, as many you want!
10.   When someone is at the grocery store trying to buy healthy food-what food items should they be sure to steer-clear of? O-M-G…really? How about: Steer clear of the center isles completely. When I used to do supermarket tours, we would refer to the “isles” as the prison of the store. Once you start pursuing the isles your trapped and you begin to buy all sorts of “junk” you don’t need. Shop the perimeter of the store. That’s where you will find the bulk of the foods that will fill your cart. Load up!! And I do mean “LOAD UP!!” on fresh vegetables and fruits. And if you buy more than you think you will use in a week then learn to make juices, smoothies and soups. You can even freeze your juiced greens in ice cube trays to use later. If the “healthy food” in question has a label on it, then it’s really not healthy. God made all the healthy foods we need. Man messed them up when he processed them. It takes so much more fuel to produce manufactured foods. If we want to save the world, literally, then eat more fresh, local foods and stop eating packaged foods.
11.  Are their any chemicals that we should be sure to steer clear of that are common in foods? Why? Again, really? There are soooo many. To be honest, not every 12 letter word on a package is poison. And here again, there are many people who will simply spew out all of those words and tell everyone how bad they are and make it sound like they have a degree in biochemistry so they know of what they speak. Some of these long words on food products are stabilizers. Polysorbate 60 or any derivative there of, is used in baked goods to keep them from going stale or in coffee whiteners to help them dissolve in coffee or in artificial whipped cream to keep the oil from separating out of the artificial whipped cream. The CSPI has an iphone app called Chemical Cuisine which allows you to look up such information and to see if the food additive is safe or not. They have different rating from “safe” to “cut back” to “avoid” to “caution” and “certain people should avoid.” CSPI deems Polysorbate 60 as safe. However, with that being said, the foods that use Polysorbate are not unsafe, but they also don’t contribute good nutrition to a society that is gearing towards being overweight and undernourished. So, again, if the food even has a label, steer clear. If it’s something you must have, do so on occasion, choose the item with the shortest ingredient list and if in doubt, download CSPI’s chemical cuisine and do some investigative shopping yourself. 
12.  If you could list 5-10 items that should be bought on every shopping trip, what would they be? Leafy Greens, Leafy Greens, Leafy Greens, wild Fish, some sort of citrus, nuts, at least one WHOLE grain or colorful starchy carb such as sweet potatoes or carrots. 


3 3.  Is there anything else you’d like to share with the audience today? Nutrition can be a daunting field. I have been studying and applying the science of nutrition to my life since 1988 and I’m still learning.
Don’t get frustrated when nutrition advice changes and don’t blame the RD. Not all of us jump on the current research bandwagon. When the advice came out to cut out eggs because of cholesterol, I thought about it and looked at eggs as whole. First of all, they are the beginning of life for a chicken. Everything a chicken needs to develop and grow is in this one little egg. How can that be bad?
In the end, God gave us the fuel to help us get through our days and achieve our life’s goals. Man came along and fouled it up. Dietitian’s are here to help clean up the mess and educate the public but we can’t know everything.  Be an educated consumer and simply use your intuition. If it is as nature intended then it is intended to optimally fuel your body.
Conclusion—Thanks for listening to TalkJogRun.  For more information, to read our blog and to start tracking your training, please visit www.walkjogrun.net.  We’ll see you next week!

Lose 10 pounds for $10 and all the food you can eat!

I bought a rainbow at the 99 cent store…
I know I’ve touted this 99 cent store on many occasions but I just had to do it again. I am just so grateful for such a place. No matter what happens in life, you always have to take care of yourself to the best of your abilities, and being able to stock a fridge for around $20 is just unheard of in this day and age. And to be able to stock it with a rainbow of colors and nutrition is even more of an anomaly.
So here is just an example of what we here in Santa Monica, well, Venice, CA, to be exact, can buy at our local 99 cent store.
3 yellow squash $1
1 pound of organic mixed salad greens $1
1/2 pound of organic spinach $1
1 pint of grape tomatoes $1
1 ½ pound bag of cocktail cucumber $1
(I never had these before but if you like cucumbers, you will LOVE these!)
1 ½ pound bag of Braeburn apples $1
1 ½ pound bag of navel oranges $1
1 pound bag of kiwis $1
1/2 pint of blackberries $1
1 bunch of celery $1
2 pound bag of carrots $1
1 pound bag of white onions $1
5 bulbs of garlic $1
1 pound bag of limes $1
3 lemons $1
1/2 gallon of aseptically packaged, shelf stable soy milk $1
12 oz package of extra firm Mori-Nu tofu $1
3 pound bag of red potatoes $1
1 pound bag of lentils $1
1 pound bag of brown rice $1
3 cans tuna $2.70
1 pound bag flax seeds $1
1 pound jar of organic salsa $1
That’s over 27 pounds of food for just under $25.
You can literally make a week’s worth of food using all of these ingredients for an average of 1,557 calories with 78g of protein, 237g of carbs, 73g of fiber & 33g of fat with 12,470mg coming from Omega-3 fats & a ratio of 0.5:1 of Omega-6 to Omega-3 fats. The desired ratio is < 4:1. Plus this diet provides 450% of the DV for vitamin A, vitamin C & manganese, more than100% for all other vitamins and minerals except 70% for Zinc, 55% for calcium, 40% for vitamin E, and 30% for vitamin D & B12.
So you see, with just a few foods and few dollars, and some motivation, you can eat extremely well, have lots of energy and still lose weight; at least 1 pound per week depending on your activity.
That same $1 spent at any one of those fast food traps will yield well into the 600 calorie range, extrapolate that to $25 spent over an entire week and we’re talking about at least 15,000 calories or more than a 4 pound weight gain in a week. Hey, it can happen. So spend your money and your time…wisely!

Superfoods Diet for a Super You!!!

Listen to internet radio with Real Riches on Blog Talk Radio

A 3-Day “Superfoods” Diet for a Super You!

Someone was handing out a 3-Day Diet that contained such “non-super” foods as saltine crackers, hot dogs and vanilla ice cream. I was appalled that so many women were clamoring to receive their copy of the “diet,” that I looked at it in disgust stating, “That is not a diet. That is horrible. There is no nutrition there. Let me put together a nutritious 3-Day Diet to help you lose weight sensibly.” So I did. As it turns out, this diet is so chock full of superfoods and good habits,  that I’ve decided to use it to coincide with a radio broadcast I’m doing tonight on the subject of “Superfoods.” The show should be at the top of this post. Simply click on the volume button and wait a few minutes for the show to begin.  (In case you have trouble finding the radio broadcast, the questions and answers from the show can be found at the end of this post)
As I was preparing for the show hosted by Tanna Corona, I listened to one of her past guests, an organizer expert named Danielle Lescure who has a website: http://www.straightenupandfileright.com/
I love organizing, not that I would do it for a living and not that I’m perfect at it, but as someone who has moved nearly every year for the past ten years, I find that organizing helps me settle into my new environment each time I relocate. Hmm, sounds like I’m in the witness protection program, but I’m not.
Danielle was a very eloquent speaker on Tanna’s show. I only hope I come across as well. She actually gave many organizational tips which I find quite applicable to helping someone on the road to better eating habits. This one in particular is the perfect jumping off point…
“Start where you are”: when it comes to making a change, whether getting more organized or improving your diet, it’s best to just look at what is right in front of you and move forward from there.
1.  If you eat cereal for breakfast, begin by adding blueberries to your cereal. Blueberries are a “superfood” for sure. Their blue color indicates that they are rich in a powerful antioxidant called anthocyanin, which offers much protection and great taste to any meal or snack.
2.  If you eat a sandwich for lunch, add Romaine lettuce or spinach to your sandwich. Leafy greens are rich in vitamin C and carotenoids (the plant version of vitamin A), both of which offer protective benefits, filling fiber, water and even protein, all from a little green plant. Although leafy greens are low in fat overall, the fat they do contain is mainly that coveted omega-3 type
3.  If you eat chicken for dinner, switch to wild caught fish 2 times per week. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that wild caught sea food is rich in omega-3’s particularly EPA & DHA which are associated with reducing inflammation and with optimizing brain health. Canned fish is fine too but choose Wild Planet brand since they use a canning process that preserves the omega-3’s while also eliminating harmful BPA’s found in other canning methods. BPA’s have been associated with increasing the risk of hormone related cancers such as breast and ovarian cancer. Fish canned in BPA lined cans is not so “super” after all. Choose BPA free Wild Planet brand!!!
In general, choose whole, colorful foods that make you feel GOOD!!! I love to snack on frozen blueberries because they are cold like ice cream, slightly sweet and they turn my tongue blue which makes me laugh!
Here is a very general list of “Superfoods” and some ways to incorporate them using the 3-Day “Superfoods” Diet below.
1.     Salmon, wild caught
2.     Flax seeds
3.     Berries
4.     Spinach, Kale, Broccoli, All leafy greens!!
5.     Beans or Lentila (all kinds)
6.     Nuts
7.     Eggs from pasture raised chickens
8.     Sweet potatoes
9.     Quinoa, Brown rice, or Wild Rice
10.   Greek yogurt
11.   Tea (green or black)
But before you learn to incorporate the list, first incorporate these useful tips!
1)      Drink 8 ounces of water upon waking & every 2 hours after.
2)      Eat within one hour of waking.
3)      Eat every 3 hours.
4)      Eat something green at every meal.
5)      Eat some protein at every meal.
6)      Eat unprocessed complex carbs from whole food sources.
7)      Eat good fats from nuts, olives, avocados or flax seeds & flax oil at every meal.
8)      Exercise or move your body at least 30 minutes a day.
9)      Sleep 6-8 hours a night.
10)  Do something that makes you happy every day!
*Note the nutrient density of these meals. No supplements required!!!
DAY 1:
Upon rising: 8 ounces of water plus the juice of one whole lemon
(By adding lemon to water, you instantly get 94% of your Daily Value for Vitamin C)
Meal 1:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
1/3 cup oatmeal, dry (2/3 cup cooked)
2 whole pasture raised eggs, scrambled
2 cups fresh spinach, steamed
Meal 2:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup white beans
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1/4 avocado, chopped
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Drink the water with lemon. Combine the rest of the ingredients for a tasty, protective salad. Place on a bed of greens if you like for added protection.
Meal 3:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
3 oz fresh or canned salmon (1/2 can)
1/2 cup cooked brown rice or quinoa (1/2 coffee cup)
2 cups steamed collard greens (1/2 of a bunch)
Steam sauté some onions with the collard greens for extra flavor
Meal 4:
8 oz water
1/2 cup white beans (1/2 coffee cup)
1 Tbsp vanilla whey protein powder
1 cup mixed salad greens (a good handful)
1 cup berries (any type)
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp flax oil
1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast Flakes (Optional: a significant source of B12)
Combine water, beans, greens, berries, cinnamon & nutritional yeast flakes in a blender.
Add 6-8 ice cubes to reach desired consistency.
Take this drink to work in a stainless steel water bottle, thermos or even a large mason jar.
Meal 5:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
4 oz pan grilled chicken (size of the palm of your hand) (make 4 oz extra for lunch tomorrow)
2 cups broccoli (size of 2 light bulbs)
Juice of 1/2 lemon, drizzle on broccoli
3 oz sweet potato (size of your fist)
1 tsp flax oil, drizzle on sweet potato (Do Not heat flax oil. Add AFTER heating food.)
Cost for the entire Day: $8.62
Nutrients for the entire Day:  Calories: 1,557, Protein: 122g, Carbs: 184g, Fiber: 42g,
Fat: 37g, Sugar: 61g, Sodium: 1,053mg, Omega-3 fats: 6,900mg, Omega-6 fats: 5,280mg,
Omega-6:Omega-3 Ratio: 0.7:1 (Goal < 4:1),
% Daily Value (DV)
Vitamin A: 424% • Vitamin C: 789% (473mg)
Thiamine-B1: 391% • Riboflavin-B2: 395%
Niacin: 250% • Vitamin B6: 348%
Vitamin B12: 87% • Vitamin D: 58%
Vitamin E: 79% • Folate: 202%
Pantothenic Acid: 107%
Calcium: 81% • Magnesium: 108%
Iron: 97% • Selenium: 191%
Copper: 80% • Zinc: 56% (8.35mg) (Goal: 12mg Women, 15mg Men)
Manganese: 271% • Potassium: 133%
Phosphorus: 123%
DAY 2:
Upon rising: 8 ounces of water plus the juice of one whole lemon
(By adding lemon to water, you instantly get 94% of your Daily Value for Vitamin C)
Meal 1:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
1 slice 100% whole wheat or sprouted bread or 1/2 cup quinoa or brown rice
2 poached eggs
2 cups collard greens, steamed (the other half of the bunch, add onion if desired)
Meal 2:
8 oz water
1/3 cup oatmeal, dry
1 cup berries
1 cup mixed salad greens
1 Tbsp ground flax seeds or 1 tsp flax oil
1 Tbsp vanilla whey protein powder
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
Blend everything in a blender. Add ice to reach desired consistency.
Meal 3:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
4 oz pan grilled chicken
3 oz sweet potato
4 cups mixed salad greens
1 tsp flax oil
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
Make a big salad out of these foods
Meal 4:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
1 hard boiled egg
1 carrot, cut into sticks
1 stalk celery, cut into sticks
Meal 5:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
4 oz steamed fish such as cod, haddock or salmon
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables such as peas, carrots & green beans
2 cups Romain lettuce
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp flax oil, to drizzle on salad
DAY 3:
Upon rising: 8 ounces of water plus the juice of one whole lemon
(By adding lemon to water, you instantly get 94% of your Daily Value for Vitamin C)
Meal 1:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup black beans
4 egg whites plus 1 whole egg, scrambled
2 Tbsp salsa
1/4 avocado
2 cups fresh spinach, steamed
Meal 2:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup brown rice
1/4 avocado, diced
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
Drink the water with lemon. Toss everything together
Meal 3:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
3 oz canned salmon
1 cup mixed vegetables
2 cups broccoli (size of 2 light bulbs)
4 cups Romaine lettuce, chopped
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp flax oil
Drink the water with lemon. Toss everything else together to make a salad
Meal 4:
8 oz water
1/4 cup vanilla whey protein powder
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
1 cup berries
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp ground flax seeds or 1 tsp flax oil
1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast Flakes (optional)
Blend everything in a blender with 6-8 ice cubes to reach desired consistency
Meal 5:
8 oz water with the juice of 1/2 lemon
4 oz extra lean beef (90-95% lean), pan grilled
2 cups kale, steamed
3 oz sweet potato, baked
1 tsp flax oil for sweet potato
Juice of 1/2 lemon for kale

What makes certain foods superfoods?  Superfoods, like Super Heros, can save your life. They are foods that fulfill more than one purpose in your diet by providing more than one type of disease fighting nutrient, nutrients such as antioxidants & fiber and nutrients that may even change how some of your genes express themselves or not. For example, a newly classified superfood is rice which contains a type of RNA that has been shown to change the expression of your genes that make cholesterol. But Superfoods are only effective if you eat them. So they must be accessible, affordable, tasty and simple to include in everyday meals. They should be filling without being excessively high in calories. What good is a superfood if you can’t find it or it’s difficult to prepare or if you simply don’t enjoy it?

How do they accelerate your health? I like the idea that superfoods, or any food, for that matter can “accelerate health.” But what most superfoods are “known” for, is that they prevent disease. Some lower cholesterol, while others prevent cancer, some have antibacterial properties, blood thinning properties, anti-inflammatory properties, and protect against osteoporosis; but the idea of accelerating health is a much more positive aspect. If you find superfoods that you enjoy and you eat them in place of non-superfoods, then you are likely to enjoy more energy, optimal digestion, improved sleep and an overall good mood all day long. Those residual effects of superfoods will definitely accelerate your health and well being.

How can we use them to bring even more power to them?  [juicing, maybe?] Here again it depends on one’s access to a juicer, whether or not they even like juices, and the overall cost. Remember that superfoods should be filling without providing excess calories. Sometimes juicing, particularly when you juice fruits, will result in an abundance of calories, especially when you buy bottled juices that are often enhanced with fruit purees. When you juice you do incorporate more nutrients but this will make the end result more costly. If you buy a bunch of kale, spinach and an apple, for example, your juice will cost around $6. If you eat an organic apple it might cost you $1 and you also get that filling fiber that was left out by juicing. With that in mind, I love juicing, but sometimes it’s just not enough. It’s rarely filling and you completely lose the textural pleasures of eating. 
To bring “more power” to your superfoods, try to incorporate a “variety” of them in every meal and snack. Every time it’s time to eat, look at your food choices and ask yourself, “Am I about to eat any superfoods? Or are all of my choices non-super?”
You should eat 5-6 small meals per day. Eat something, or drink a juice, within one hour of rising and then every 3 hours thereafter. That’s a lot of opportunity to ingest superfoods. To help everyone do this, I’ve put together a 3-Day Superfoods Diet and all of my recipes on my website include superfoods throughout.

What if you don’t like the taste of these foods? That’s the beauty of food, there are many, many choices. And every superfood has a counterpart, so to speak. For example, if you don’t like kale, try another big leafy green vegetable such as Swiss chard, collard greens or bok choi. Although Kale is really off the charts for  Vitamin C, and for vitamin A precursors (aka carotenoids), they are not the ONLY food in our dietary choices which provide these nutrients. Also, try a superfood in more than one way. When you cook kale, it gives off a relatively strong odor but when you eat it raw with a little lemon juice and flax oil, the flavor is much more mild, AND by adding the lemon juice and flax oil, you’ve just enhanced the overall “superness” of this “superfood.” You can include kale in a fresh juice along with an apple and some celery which will also provide vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, while helping to mask the stronger flavor of the kale.
We know that overcooking, the canning process, etc., can compromise the nutrients in foods that are otherwise good for you.  Is there any way we should look out for that would do this to superfoods?  First, a caveat on canning. Canned beans are convenient and beans are definitely a superfood since they are protein  and carbohydrate rich, although not a complete protein. They are extremely high in fiber, simply THE highest fiber food you can eat. They are also very rich in minerals and much more versatile than most people realize. But the time it takes to cook them is a turn off for most people. However, canned beans are about five times more costly than dried beans, although we’re really only talking $1.29 vs $0.29 for the same volume. But if someone is willing to incorporate beans, I will advise them to buy beans that come in BPA free cans. So far, the only companies which I know for sure use BPA free canning processes are Eden organics and Amy’s organics.
Tomatoes are often canned and the canning process actually enhances the bioavailability of Lycopene, one of their very unique antioxidants which has been shown to reduce the incidence of cancer, heart disease and macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness amongst older Americans. However, some people can’t eat a lot of tomatoes or other nightshade vegetables for that matter because of a component called solanine. When you do some research you will find that most people classify solanine as a toxin produced by green potatoes but solanine is actually a naturally occurring antioxidant found in many plants including tomatoes, peppers and eggplant, all of the nightshade family, as well as blueberries, apples, cherries, beets, huckleberries, okra and artichokes. Upon further research, I found that solanine is an antioxidant that has anticancer benefits. But for some people, it also causes an inflammatory response in the joints. Solanine, for the plant, acts as a feeding deterrent against predetorial insects. It interferes with digestion and nutrient absorption and causes production of potentially dangerous oxygen radicals or pro-oxidants. But pro-oxidants, the opposite of anti-oxidants do have a purpose in the body. They help kill off invading viruses and bacteria. Keep in mind that these solanine rich plant foods have a growing season and for that reason, it might be best to eat these foods during their peak season and NOT all year round. They have a season for a reason.
Overcooking can sometimes leach out some nutrients, particularly Vitamin C and the B vitamins, but some of the other antioxidants are more resilient and will still be there even through the cooking process. In general, it’s never a good idea to overcook anything, but sometimes cooking can enhance flavors, can make foods easier to digest and can even enhance the absorption of certain nutrients. Quinoa, for example, a popular supergrain, has some nutrient blockers that are released during the cooking process. These nutrient blockers are actually “antioxidants” developed by the plant to protect it from predators. Animals that eat these plants will learn that if they overconsume the plant, they may suffer from a nutrient deficiency which may even lead to death. This just goes to show that you CAN eat too much of  a good thing. In quinoa, for example, there is an antioxidant called a saponin, which is part of the plant’s immune system, it protects the plant from microbes and fungus. To humans, this saponin causes the grain to have a slightly soapy taste and to inhibit the absorption of some of the minerals which are often hard to come by in plant foods. However, because saponins are an antioxidant for the plant, they also provide us antioxidant protection when we eat quinoa. Although some research shows that saponins, when mixed with red blood cells, cause the cells to lyse, or rupture, which may seem detrimental to humans, this reaction is actually protective. You see, saponins are not absorbed in the human gut, so they don’t have the opportunity to cause harm inside the body, which I doubt they would anyway. But while these saponins are traveling through the gut, they latch on to potentially harmful bacteria, form a complex with the bacteria’s cholesterol which makes up cell structures, and causes the cholesterol, and therefore the cell membrane to rupture in essence, they kill the bacteria. So like in the plant itself, the saponin exerts antibacterial properties in humans too. The other thing to note about quinoa and most superfoods, is where they live, Quinoa thrives in cold, dry climates in high altitudes. It’s tenacity to flourish under such conditions exemplifies the power it can provide in our diets. Flax seeds, blueberries, strawberries and leafy greens such as collards, kale and purslane, for example are other examples of plants which thrive under less than optimal conditions. Purslane is a weed that grows in the sidewalk cracks. You can buy it at some farmer’s markets here in southern California. But it has an odd texture and flavor that may be a bit off-putting to some. However, it’s extremely high in omega-3 fats so I would toss it in a mixed green salad or throw it in a smoothie.
Are there any superfoods you feel are overrated? Goji berries, pomegranates and acai. Pomegranates are so difficult to work with that it’s a deterrent. Although pomegranate juice abounds, to me, a superfood can be bought and easily consumed in the package nature provided. Goji berries are from the other side of the globe and personally, I don’t enjoy their taste. Plus they are always found in the dried form, not necessarily processed but not as they appear in nature. Same for Acai. You can’t consume it in it’s pure and natural state unless you go to Brazil. But if you look around our country, our own backyards provide a plethora of superfood options. As a kid growing up in PA, I would simply go for  walk in the country and pick mulberries, aka blackberries, along the way. I used to walk out to my parent’s garage and suck on the honeysuckles that grew on the wall or I’d walk to the backyard garden and grab a fresh tomato in the summer. But in the winter, I simply didn’t eat tomatoes. If you want the BEST superfoods for you, get to know what’s in season in your community. Plants develop their antioxidant defense system as a way to protect themselves and help them grow and thrive according to their environment. If we eat the plants that grow in our environment, then we will get some of the same benefits.
Any help kick cravings?  Most cravings result from your body looking for nutrients.At the most basic level, when you don’t eat enough calories, your body may crave carbs or fat, rarely does it crave protein but often times, eating some protein whenever you are hungry, may keep you from overeating. Because protein foods are digested more slowly than carbs and don’t cause an insulin spike as we sometimes experience from a higher carb meal. An insulin spike will cause an influx of blood sugar to enter the cells rapidly which causes the blood sugar levels to drop suddenly, not necessarily to drop to a clinically low level of under 70, but perhaps just a drop from say 140 to 100 in a short period of time. If that happens, you may experience a sudden feeling of lightheadedness, perhaps a feeling of hunger which causes you to eat again even though your body has just been fed. In the end, if you team up your carbs with a fairly equal portion of protein, then you may offset some cravings.
Aside from the cravings we experience from a purely macronutrient sense, your body may tend to “crave” minerals. When we are stressed or very physically active, we tend to burn through more magnesium. It’s a common theory that chocolate cravings stem from your body’s search for a magnesium source. You eat the chocolate and you get “some” magnesium, but you also get sugar and fat and chemicals such as threobromine which increases blood pressure and heart rate, basically acting as a “stimulant,” the way caffeine does. Chocolate also contains phenylethylamine which may stimulate the release of endorphin, that feel good hormone. Running can have the same effect for some people. Chocolate, because of its mouthfeel, is one of those foods that most people just love. But if it’s a food that you know you will easily over-consume, then try eliminating it from the diet and focus on more nutrient dense foods which may give you the minerals your body is craving in the first place. Good sources of magnesium include whole grains, leafy greens, beans and nuts; four superfoods that will accelerate your health while helping you kick cravings, especially cravings for chocolate. I also believe that chocolate as a superfood is overrated. And as a result, everyone under the sun is marketing some sort of “pure” cacoa type chocolate. If chocolate is a trigger food for you, as it is for me, then use the old adage, “Out of sight, out of mind.”I don’t crave chocolate until I eat it.

Cooking show audition number…? I lost count….Maybe I should do a reality show

How do all these people get these ridiculous reality shows that show nothing, but……nope, they show nothing. Nothing I’m interested in viewing, but yet, there are millions of people who are interested. So maybe I need to stop doing what I’ve been doing and jump on the “Reality TV” bandwagon.
Frankly, if it was just me, my reality show would be really boring…Elizabeth wakes up a the ungodly hour of 3AM, eats some fruit (watermelon or cherries right now ’cause they’re in season) drinks organic instant coffee (Mount Hagen, which I developed a taste for while working as a private chef for Peter Koral of 7 Jeans) with organic milk and cinnamon, puts her hair in pigtails with multicolored hairbands to keep the hair from getting tangled, (see Rudy’s Gluten Free video for example), while listening to 94.7 the Wave and watching either The Golden Girls, ’cause I love Betty White, or I Love Lucy, ’cause, well, I just love Lucy. I love Lucy because I’ve been watching her my whole life. I Love Lucy is the only show to never go off the air. What is her secret? I can’t even get a show to go “on the air” and yet, like Lucy, I love to shop and I’m always trying to “get on the show.” I guess I need to up my antics and find a cohort like Ethel to help me each day.
I also love 94.7 because I love songs like All This Love, by El Debarge and Bobby Caldwell, What you won’t do for love. Plus I love the energy of the morning DJ’s, Pat & Kim, they work so well together and always tell wonderful news and personal stories. Because of them, I was able to approach Julia Roberts and tell her something about herself that she didn’t know; that there is a man in Mexico with 82 tatoos of her face on his body. She couldn’t believe it when I told her while standing in line at coffee. When she left she said “Have a good day” and I added “By the way, I’m a big fan. I love all of your movies” to which she replied, “Thank you, but please don’t get any tatoos of me.” We both laughed and laughed and… no, we both just laughed once. But I had just heard that story on 94.7 the morning before I saw Julia and I told myself that I would only talk to her if I had something unique to say. I even told her that I heard it on 94.7 The Wave. I guess I was plugging my favorite radio station.
Around 4:30 or 5, I put on my camel back hydration system, run to Gold’s Gym in  Venice and workout for about  45 minutes. Sometimes I see Harvey Levin there, from TMZ fame. Then I run home and sometimes extend my run past the Santa Monica Pier although lately I haven’t been running as far ’cause the bathrooms along the path have been locked even after 6:30 AM and it is not fun to run when you have to pee because you drank coffee and about 40 ounces of water from a camel back while working out.
After my workout, I take my hair out of my multicolored pony tail holders and I jump in the shower. Then I get dressed and drive down the coast (Pacific Coast Highway) to meet my boyfriend, Maurice Travis, for our morning coffee ritual at the Coffee Bean in the Palisades.
There is a group of men who always gather there. I’m usually the only female. Maurice, is typically outfitted in an interesting ensemble of Muay Thai shorts under colorful warm up pants, cargo pants or jeans . He wears Muay Thai shorts under everything, probably because he’s the only American to ever fight on the actual Muay Thai team. He is energetic and entertaining even before his morning cup of coffee, a large Red Eye, in case you ever want to buy him a cup of coffee. Maurice is just so fun to be around and although he blatantly google-eyes every pretty woman that walks by, he really only has eyes for me…and hands and lips… and the rest is x-rated so I can’t say but lets just say that we have a LOT of fun together!!
Maurice & I met while I was working as a private chef for Peter Koral in November/December 2007. I will never forget the feeling I had when he walked into the kitchen one night. Peter was out and I was cleaning up after dinner. I was thinking that although I liked the experience, I wished I was cooking for my own loved ones. Then…Maurice walked in. He was like no one I had ever seen before. He has these amazing, bright, ice blue eyes and this crazy blonde hair. He’s 6’3″, around 200 pounds and has a butt you can bounce a quarter off of. I never thought he would like me. On our first date I took him to a lingerie party. We had instant chemistry. But soon after we met, I broke my foot when I fell over one of Peter’s dogs in the kitchen. Maurice was going through some personal stuff so we stopped seeing each other. A few months later, frustrated with my life, I moved to Houston, Texas for a year. But I missed Santa Monica everyday. So I came back.
Maurice and I reunited last February, right around Valentine’s day, and my life has been a lot more fun ever since!!!!
I used to go to a day job after coffee but at the time of this article, I was writing off & on for Oxygen, a women’s fitness magazine and Clean Eating magazine. Needless to say, I have some free time for once in my life and I love it. Maurice bought me some golf clubs at a thrift store. We love thrift store shopping. He also got me a wet suit. So our new activities are going to be golfing and surfing. Since both activities are new to me, it will be more like, chip-n-putting, and laying on the surfboard trying not to freak out thinking about all the little creatures beneath me’ing….
But I’m really excited about my new life. If it weren’t for Maurice, my reality show would be… Elizabeth comes home from the gym, watches Frasier, stresses about why she doesn’t have a cooking show. Making random phone calls and sending out random emails to people that have shows and production companies that produce cooking shows and ending with Elizabeth sitting at her desk on her ergonomically designed chair, one hand under her chin, the other, fingers tapping on her desk, brows furrowed, creating worry lines, wait ingfor responses that never seem to arrive in my “in box.” Who wants to watch that?!!! Not me and that could have been my life, ugh!
Thanks to Maurice, I not only have new, more fun, yet productive hobbies, but I also get to meet interesting people each and everyday. Maurice knows everyone. We went to Taverna Tony’s, an amazing Greek restaurant in Malibu and as soon as we walked in, the owner, Tony, hugged Maurice and treated us like royalty. We even got better treatment than Vince Vaughn and his wife and new baby. Although Tony was chatting with Vince as we left.
I was gonna tell Vince that we met while filming The Wedding Crashers. (I’m in the scene were Vince & Owen arrive at the outdoor reception. I had long red hair like Isla Fisher. I’m also in the scene right after Vince sleeps with Isla on the beach). It was me, Vince and Owen Wilson on set one day. Owen kept asking me for a hug. Everyone on set said that he would probably talk to me because he had already made his rounds to most of the single women on set and I was one of them. But after the filming, which took place in Saint Michaels Maryland (I lived in Ocean City, MD, at the time) I was  moving to  San Francisco where I was supposed to co-host a cooking show with the chef who worked with famed cardiologist Dean Ornish.


So although Owen was a big star who wanted a hug from me, I kept saying “No.” And he kept saying, “It’s just a hug.” Vince was laughing at the whole scene and said it reminded him of a Joe Namath interview where Joe was drunk and kept trying to get a kiss from the female interviewer. Anyway, I stood my ground and never did give Owen a hug, but I did let him walk me to lunch the next day.
Vince was trying to remember the lyrics to “Save the best for last” by Vanessa Williams so I chimed in, I love to sing and he said I had a great voice.
So as Maurice and I were leaving Taverna Tony’s, we walked right by Vince’s table, said goodbye to Tony, but I didn’t say anything to Vince. That was far too long of a story to recount and not look like a dork or stalker or something.
OK, so the whole point here was to share the recipe that I did not get to completely spit out in my umteenth cooking show audition video. Here it is….finally…I love a good story, don’t you?

Greek Chicken Burgers & Greek Slaw

1 lb ground chicken breast meat
1/2 cup feta cheese
1 egg
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
4 whole wheat pitas, cut off 1/3 of each pita and chop into crumbs. Reserve the rest of the pitas for the final product.
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, minced (3/4 cup total mint leaves, see below)
4 cups romaine lettuce
1 large heirloom tomato
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, minced
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
Beat egg in a large mixing bowl. Add chicken, feta, sea salt, pepper, pita crumbs and mint. Mix everything thorough with clean hands. Shape into small, about 2/3 cup portions. Place on a heated skillet sprayed with cooking spray. Cook on each side about 5 minutes until no longer pink inside.
While burgers cook, mix Greek yogurt and mint in a small bowl.
Serve two burgers inside each pita with 2 lettuce leaves, 2-3 slices of tomato & 2 Tbsp Greek yogurt sauce. Eat with 1 cup Greek slaw and enjoy feeling very full and satisfied!!
$3.50 per serving: 2 burger, 1 pita, 2 lettuce leaves, 3 slices tomato, 2 Tbsp Greek yogurt sauce
460 calories, 38g protein, 45g carbs, 7g fiber, 17g fat. 50% Daily Value for Zinc, Selenium, B12, Iron, Vitamin C, Niacin & Riboflavin. At least 30% for every other nutrient.


Greek Slaw

1/2 head cabbage, finely chopped
1 carrot, grated
1 cucumber, quartered and chopped into 1/8 inch slices
1/2 yellow onion, finely sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
8 grape tomatoes, chopped
8 kalamata olives, minced
1 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Dressing

1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
Juice of one lime (2 Tbsp)
1/2 tsp ground oregano
1 clove garlic, minced
Combine dressing in a small bowl and slaw ingredients in a large bowl. Toss slaw with dressing and serve with burgers or eat 1 cup servings of slaw as a filling midday snack!
$0.60 per serving, 1 cup: 80 calories, 2g protein, 6g carbs, 2g fiber, 6g fat, 50% DV vitamin C, 20% vitamin A.