Friday, November 21, 2014

Recipe Redux: Giving Thanks for Food Memories

This Recipe Redux theme was ridiculously hard for me. Not because I wasn't inspired. Not because food combinations and recipes couldn't come to me. But because how could I choose just one food memory that I am thankful for to write about??

Growing up food was love and I have infinite memories of cooking and eating with my mom, dad, sister and grandparents. Cinnamon rolls (rested overnight of course) for Christmas and Dad's birthday. The most decadent three-layer brthday cake served for every birthday (and even better as breakfast the next day). Deep dish spinach stuffed pizza, crockpot stews, that one time mom snuck tongue into our soup and we thought it was tasty until she spilled the beans. Puffy pancakes, buckwheat pancakes, plain ol' pancakes. Garlic and Parmesan popcorn while watching a classic movie.

Then there was when I first started to be vegetarian around age 13 and discovered the goodness of hummus sandwiches. How amazing brownie mix--heck all food--tastes while on a month-long backpacking trip as a 14 year old. Moving to Thailand and honing my enviable tolerance of spicy food. The best Pad Thai of my life whipped up in 5 minutes flat from a cart on the side of the road. Infinite dishes of Som Tom. a surprise birthday party at hot pot where I felt loved in a place outside my comfort zone.

Then falling out of love with food and using it as a way to control my feeling about my body and it's size. And losing countless memories I can never regain of my life (food included). A time of sugar-free jello, fat-free PB and Ensure, every calorie counted.

The disordered eating and diet food consumption sadly continued into my freshman year of college until one day I got sick of sugar-free, fat-free CoolWhip and went back to eating real food to fuel my newfound (and short lived) crew pastime.

I started to reading more about nutrition, and eating plant-based as I switched from a Neurobiology/Genetics major into the Nutrition program. I wanted to learn how to fuel athletes and help others heal their relationship with food. I discovered Boston's food scene, got tight with Slow Food, local food and good food. I started exploring new cities mouth first, through words/reviews/critiques of close friends and anonymous critics. I began to talk to real clients about food, their relationship with food and their own food memories. I started writing more about food and nutrition and conjuring up nostalgia, while creating my own new food memories. At meals shared by great friends, and great chefs. And I give thanks for them all.

But I don't have many food memories I have created myself. Or should I say exceptional food memories of food I've created myself (I still have nightmares about some vegan baking I've attempted). So I'm taking a professional culinary course to learn/refresh my kitchen skills in an attempt to begin to create and share more food memories that start in MY kitchen. 

Until that happens, I'll share a comforting recipe from someone much wiser (and better at cooking) that I. My Mom's Split Pea Soup. A soup made for cold November and December days. 

What is your favorite food memory?

PS: The winner of my EZ Tofu Press Giveaway is.... Jane Dough. Follow her on instagram for drool-worthy baked goods! 

Monday, November 17, 2014

EZ Tofu Press Giveaway

You know you're a vegetarian have used textbooks to press water out of tofu... #vegproblems. But seriously...

The makers of EZ Tofu Press contacted me a couple years ago to see if I wanted to try out their handy-dandy water extractor and of course I said yes. And when they emailed me last month to see how it was holding up and if I wanted to do a giveaway I said Yes Please! This little device is a kitchen staple for me. It's held up for two years and I use it weekly. Because no one wants soggy tofu. Without excess moisture tofu fries and bakes better. It crisps up and is overall more appealing--to even non-vegetarians. It takes under 15 minutes to press water out of firm or extra firm tofu, so you can chop veggies and get your marinade ready while the EZ Tofu Press is working away. It's also dishwasher safe!

While it looks like a tofu torture device I assure you nothing was harmed in the making of this meal.

Ready to torture your tofu? Make more delicious meals? Save on paper towels? Limit damage to textbooks? Razzle dazzle your holiday guests?

Comment below on your favorite tofu dish to make and one lucky commenter will receive their very own EZ Tofu Press!
  • Giveaway open to US Residents only
  • Giveaway runs from Monday 11/17 8AM MT to 11/21 5PM MT
  • For one extra entry, tweet or post to Facebook: "Enter to win @ElizabethEats EZ Tofu Press #giveaway!"

Just can't wait? Check out EZ Tofu Press on Amazon. 
Disclosure: I was not compensated for my time or this post. I was given an EZ Tofu Press for free two years ago. Have a question, ask!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Nutrition Musts: Research Digest

With nutrition the constant hot topic, and everyone (and their mom) proclaiming themselves a "nutrition expert/guru/savant/messiah" it's hard to know who to trust and what to believe. Is meat bad for you? Will artificial flavors,dyes and preservatives kill me? I want the Omega-3s in salmon, but what's a sustainable fishing method? and do I have to worry about mercury? WHAT THE HELL SHOULD I EAT??
Research comes out, media hype ensues, truth gets lost. Wash, rinse, repeat.
As a nutrition nerd I love reading full length peer-reviewed studies and picking apart the research methodologies. But it's not quick, it's not easy and it definitely isn't for everyone.

That's why I am every so thankful for This powerhouse team of PhDs compiles the latest research on nutrition and fitness and gives you an unbiased answer to whether or not you should take/eat/enjoy a multitude of foods, supplements and fitness routines.

Just when I thought their product (which is almost all available online for FREE) could get any better, they outdid themselves. The Research Digest - ERD is a game changer in the best sense of the word.

What is ERD exactly? It's a monthly digest which helps you easily digest new and relevant research. Each month ERD scours over 8 recent nutrition and supplement studies, breaks them down and delivers them to you in an easy to follow format

DOES IT GET BETTER? YES IT DOES! For the next few days, membership to ERD will be available at a special 20% off introductory sale. By subscribing to ERD you get:.
  • 8 in-depth reviews on the latest nutrition research
  • An op-ed (a fantastic piece of Dr. Yoni Freedhoff for the first issue)
  • A monthly Q&A with a nutrition or fitness researcher

So if you love nutrition, fitness and/or research, care about facts, and are short on time (or just want to hear another opinion) ERD is a must. Check it out and let me know in the comments what you think!

**note: I was not paid by and don't receive any kickback if you sign up. I'm just obsessed with it.