Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Martha G.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Southwest Soup

Southwest Soup

Southwest Soup
This makes about 8 servings

1 med onion finely chopped
3 garlic cloves finely chopped
1/2 lb of lean ground beef (or turkey, or tofu)
2 cups cooked black beans drained
2 cups frozen corn
1 can tomato sauce
1 can diced no-salt added tomatoes
1 7oz package of uncooked vermicelli (a.k.a. fideo)
5 cups oragnic low sodium chicken stock
2 cups water
2 tsp smoked chipotle powder (I use McCormick's)
1 tsp ancho chile powder (I use McCormick's)
1 tsp New Mexico Chile powder
1 tbsp cumin
1/2 tsp Wurshitishire sauce
Olive Oil
1/2 a lime

In a medium pot sautee onion until it's translucent
Add garlic and sautee until fragrant
Add ground meat to brown--drain out fat once, it's cooked
Stir in spices (chipotel, ancho and NM chile powders and cumin)
Pour tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, water, chichen stock and Wurstishire sauce. Stir to combine.
Once liquid is boiling stir in vermicelli.
Cook about 10-13 mins on medium high heat until vermicelli is cooked.
Stir in corn and beans, cook until corn and beans have heated through.
Squeeze half a lime (about 1/2 tsp)onto soup & stir to combine just before serving (it will brighten up flavors).

I love to serve this recipe with home-made tortilla chips (just bake quartered corn tortillas that have been sprayed with olive oil until crispy) and a refreshing salad with avocado.

Do you have a special request or a recipe that you love and would like to get it made over into a heart healthy version? CLICK HERE and I will try help you!

My Pioneering Friends

As always I love to boast about great women doing great things and I'm so lucky to know so many great women :). Well recently I received an email from one of my friends up in Canada. Carolyn, who I've written about many times is still blazing trails! She has recently received a prestigious award for all her efforts in educating women about heart disease here's the email they sent her

Dear Carolyn,

We are delighted to let you know that you have been selected as one of 20 'Our Bodies Ourselves' Women's Health Heroes for 2009. Your work has inspired us all.

OBOS named 20 inductees from seven countries for our inaugural 2009 awards as we sought to find a way to celebrate women's health activism in communities around the world.

With our best wishes & congratulations --

Wendy Brovold
Christine Cupaiuolo
Judy Norsigian
Kiki Zeldes
...for the 'Our Bodies Ourselves' Board of Trustees and staff

'Our Bodies Ourselves' (OBOS), also known as the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective (BWHBC), is a nonprofit, public interest women’s health education, advocacy, and consulting organization. Beginning in 1970 with the publication of the landmark book, 'Our Bodies, Ourselves', OBOS has inspired and championed the women’s health activism movement.

I'm so proud of her! And wanted to share her great news with you all :)

Here's to more women like Carolyn blazing trails and educating people about the importance of women's heart health!
Congrats Carolyn!

Grilled Teriaki Chicken w/ Jasmine Rice & Garlic Ginger Veggies

Teriaki Chicken

Teriaki Chicken

1/2 cup Mrs. Dash Spicy Teriaki Merinade
1 tbs orange juice
1/8 tsp of liquid smoke (if broiled only)
4 Chicken Cutlets*
Toasted Sesame Seeds for garnish

* I recommend chicken cutlets because then you end up eating 1/2 a chicken breast (the recommended portion) but it looks like you are eating an entire chicken breast and my first rule is "you eat with your eyes FIRST!" To make your own chicken cutlets: half a chicken breast length wise, then pound the cutlet to about an 1/8 of an inch thickness, you'll end up with a large "steak". (I'll make a video ASAP b/c it's hard to explain :D )

To make the sauce simply mix the marinade with the orange juice and liquid smoke if you are broiling the chicken, if you are grilling then leave it out in a small bowl and set aside.
To broil:
Broil the chicken cutlets about 5-7 minutes on each side (depends on how far the chicken is from the broiler), you want to cook it until it's starting to char but doesn't char completely. Once the chicken is begining to char on the second side brush on the sauce on each side and cook for another 2 minutes (just long enough for the sauce to heat up).
If grilling:
Grill the chicken about 3-4 minutes on each side, just so you get the grill marks (b/c the chicken is so thin it will cook quickly so keep a close eye on it!) Brush on the sauce as it's done cooking and heat through.

Sprinkle some sesame seeds on top for garnish and serve with Jasmine rice (cooked to package directions) and Garlic Ginger Veggies (recipe follows)

Garlic Ginger Veggies

1 tsp finely chopped garlic
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
3 tbsp Smart Balance (or your favorite buttery spread)
4 cups broccoli florets
3 cups baby carrots
Pepper to taste

In a small bowl combine butter spread, garlic and ginger and microwave for about 30-45 seconds (long enough for the butter to melt) and let it sit.
Meanwhile steam broccoli and carrots, I do it in the microwave in a glass container.
When the broccoli and carrots are steamed (I like to do it so that my broccoli just turns bright green this leaves all the veggies crisp, toss with the butter mixture and as much pepper as you like.
It's an easy an flavorfull recipe that will go with any Asian inspired dish :).

Do you have a special request or a recipe that you love and would like to get it made over into a heart healthy version? CLICK HERE and I will try help you!

Bring on the veggies!

As some of you may know I am getting ready to try to have another baby! Well, I have to take more precautionary steps than most. First I needed to get off my heart meds...check! Now I need to get off my cholesterol meds...O-Oh!
It's widely known that pregnancy increases your cholesterol. And why shouldn't it right? I mean cholesterol is an essential part of developing the brain and who doesn't want to have a baby with a healthy brain? However, it can become an issue when you are blessed with genes that assist in naturally producing a ridiculous amount of cholesterol like myself. So what can one do to help prevent dangerous amounts of cholesterol during pregnancy? Eat more veggies!
At least that's my theory. I figured that if I can have a more vegetable based diet while reducing the amount of animal based protein I will be more successful at controling my cholesterol without meds. Who knows maybe after this adventure I won't need cholesterol meds! That would be great :).
So why blog about it? Well, for one I've decided to do more personal blogging, but also because this will affect the recipes I add to the site. You can expect more veggie based recipes as well as even leaner recipes and tips on reducing the amount of animal protein you are intaking.

Here's to a healthier YOU!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Oh No, My links!

So in all my re-decorating I've lost all my links :( bare with me while I restore everything I had there if you have some good links for me leave me a comment or EMAIL ME!

Great Food Articles

I get a newsletter from and they often have some great articles! This time I thought I would share some of them....

Cocunut Oil: Good or Bad?
With the great demise of trans fats in the fast food industry the rise of coconut and palm oil has gone back up---that's right back up...they used to be the oils du'jour in the 80's (or so I'm told :) ). So the big question coconut oil good or bad? Well, this article does a great job at displaying both sides of the argument. Bottom line? Well cocunut (and palm for that matter) oil is one of the very few plant based products that is a natural source of saturated fat and like the article explains "there’s strong evidence that suggests the various fatty acids found in coconut oil, including lauric, palmitic and myristic acid (all medium-chained triglycerides), raise both LDL (bad) and HDL (good) cholesterol and total cholesterol." That's right, it means that coconut oil is considered a medium-chained triglyceride...that's one of the feared words by those of us that suffer of high cholesterol. So that means that for those of us with heart issues, high cholesterol, or just have a healthy respect for high fat, high cholesterol foods coconut oil is a no-no.
What's that? You say that you like to eat out once in a while? Well then there's no avoiding high fat, high cholesterol, high sodium, high everything you shouldn't be eating foods but like my Dr. always says, there's no harm done in doing things you're not supposed to do in moderation...moderation, now THAT'S the challenge! ;D

Top 5 Herbs for Healthy Cooking

Top 5 Spices for Healthy Cooking

Herbs and Spices are the lifeline of a heart-conscious foodie! So naturally I was curious as to what Heatlhy Eats considered their top 5. And these articles certainly did not disapoint! They not only give an excellent explanation of the herbs and spices but also links to great recipes! So definitely take a look!

My favorite herbs and spice? Well, it's funny you they are!

1. Cilandro (hey I'm Mexican, what do expect ;D )
2. Italian Parsley
3. Dill
4. Basil
5. Chives

Sure my fav aren't all necessarily practical for every kitchen but I use them like they are going out of style!

1. Paprika
2. Cinnamon (my oatmeal would not be the same without it!)
3. Cumin
4. New Mexico Chile
5. Nutmeg

So what's your top herbs and spices? Leave me a comment!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Blog Changes

I'm doing a little update on my blog to make it more user friendly and make my recipes more easily accesible, so I'm going to be working on a little sidebar where I will post links to each of my recipes by name (vs. month posted as it is now) but since I have to work on the html code for it, it's going to take a while.

Meanwhile you can look forward to some new recipes coming like Southwest Soup, Low Sodium Pickles, and yes I'm still planning on working on the breakfast sausage and italian sausage but just haven't had time to nail those down yet...pickles are harder to perfect than expected! Oh! And I'm planning on testing out some how-to videos on tougher we'll see how that goes! As always I'm just an email away if you have any questions or comments :)

To Your Health!

Monday, April 13, 2009

The Perfect Pickle Pursuit

I miss pickles! My burgers aren't the same, my movie watching isn't the same...I never realized how big of a part of my life they were until I couldn't have them anymore. And so I did what I always do when it comes to food...I hit the internet and searched for pickle recipes for inspiration.

My first recipe involved apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, water, sugar, alum, pickling spice and dill (and cucumbers of course). However it ended up tasting too much like cloves and even though I like cloves (in small amounts) I wanted a more dill-y pickle. So I simplified my recipe by just using pickling cucumbers, white vinegar, water, sugar, alum and dill. It improved greatly, but it's still missing something. I think I'm going to try adding lemons for some sourness. And so my journey continues. If you have ideas leave me a comment!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Spicy Beef & Veggie Stir Fry

Who misses Chinese food? I DO!!!! Well I came across a great product a while ago and even though it's meant to be a marinade I immediately though "stir fry!" So I came up with this recipe, it's easy and very quick. Enjoy!!


(click to enlarge)

1/2 lb. Lean beef thinly sliced & choppend into bite size pieces
12 oz bag of stir fry medley veggies
1/2 cup Mrs. Dash Spicy Teriaki Marinade
1 Orange (just the juice and zest)
2 tsp minced garlic (if you want a mild taste just do 1 tsp)
2 tsp minced ginger
1/2 large onion sliced thin
1 cup sliced mushrooms
pinch of dried red pepper flakes (optional)
3 green onions chopped (for garnish)
olive oil
I also highly recommend a wok

Preheat large pan (medium high heat) or wok (medium heat). Pour enouogh olive oil to lightly coat the bottom (b/c you are using olive oil you want to wait until the wok is completely hot and immediately add ingredients or the oil will burn)

Stir fry onions for about 1 minute stirring constantly only until they begin to look translucent.

Add garlic & ginger and continue stirring for about another minute to give the garlic and ginger a chance to begin cooking.

Stir in meat & mushrooms. Once everything is well incorporated cover and cook for 3-5 minutes stirring occasionally. If you are using a regular pan you might need to add 1-2 tbsp of water so that the meat has some liquid to steam in.

Take the lid off and stir until almost all the liquid is gone (about 1 minute)

Stir in the rest of the veggies, orange zest and orange juice and stir to combine.

Once everything is well combined and the veggies have begun to cook, pour Mrs. Dash marinade.

Stir to combine and cover for another 2-4 minutes, stirring occassionally until veggies are almost completely cooked (if you like them crunchy; their colors would have brighted and the brocoli will begin to wilt but not quite) or completely cooked (if you like the veggies soft; the brocoli will be wilted and soft).

Serve over steamed rice and topped with chopped green onions.

Do you have a special request or a recipe that you love and would like to get it made over into a heart healthy version? CLICK HERE and I will try help you!

New Article!

OK, so as a member of Women's Heart I get a newsletter with all sorts of articles in it. This month There were two that stood out to me....

"Consuming A Little Less Salt Could Mean Fewer Deaths"
It's a very interesting article About how in the American Heart Association's 49th Annual conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention researchers discussed that "for every gram of salt that Americans reduce in their diets daily, a quarter of a million fewer new heart disease cases and over 200,000 fewer deaths would occur over a decade"...a quarter of a million fewere new heart disease cases for just one gram of salt less!!!! Let's do the math shall we?

2.5 grams of salt = 1 gram of sodium
1/4 tsp of table salt = 590 mg of sodium
So that puts 1 gram of salt at less than 1/4 tsp!
If American's reduce their salt consumption by 1/4 of a teaspoon of salt a day there could be more than 250,000 less cases of heart disease and over 200,000 fewer deaths related to heart disease over the next decade! That would mean over 200,000 fewer families that wouldn't have to suffer the loss of a loved one, and a quarter of a million less people that would not have to change their entire lives, wouldn't have to loose their independance, wouldn't have to feel less whole as a human being; wouldn't have to feel "weak" or "broken." It's amazin to me how 1/4 of a teaspoon can make such a big difference!

Furthermore, the article talks about how "currently, americans eat 9-12 grams of salt per day (or 3600-4800 mg of sodium). This amount is far in excess than recommended by most health organizations (5-6 grams/day of salt or 2000-24000 mg sodium)." Not to mention that what we SHOULD be intaking is actually considered by most people the diet that only heart patients have!!!

This article certainly opened my eyes to the fact that although I began this blog as an attempt to make heart patients' lives easier by aiding with the reality that salt does not necessarily equal taste and that yes you can survive a low sodium, low fat, low cholesterol diet, it's become so much more to me. If I can help people become more aware of what they are putting into their bodies and help them become aware that heart disease has become the number one killer in America for both men and women. Then perhaps we as a whole can help future generations cure this epidemic. Perhaps, by teaching mothers to cook "heart healthy" children will think twice about what they are eating and how much exercise they are getting for reasons other than those based on vanity. That is my hope, my goal, my dream.

For the full article CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Garlic Spaghetti Squash

Speghetti Squash is a great way to make your italian pasta inspired dishes low carb and so much more healthy!

Roasting Speghetti Squash
You can do this in many different ways but I preffer the easy way :D

Preheat oven to 450 degrees
Wash your squash, poke holes throughout the squash and then place it on a cookie sheet or baking dish (lightly spray the baking dish so the squash won't stick). Bake for 40-60 minutes until the squash is fork tender.

Let squash cool for about 15 minutes.
Then slice the squash length wise, scoop out the seeds and run a fork through the squash "meat" to loosen up the "noodles" that the spaghetti squash becomes.

For the Garlic Spahetti Squash...

(click to enlarge)

2 tbs olive oil
1 small onion chopped
2-3 garlic cloves finely chopped
a pinch red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp italian seasonings

While you are roasting the squash, sautee onion and galic in a tablespoon and a half of the olive oil. Once the onion is beginning to caramelize include pepper flakes and italian seasoning and shut heat off.
Once you have the noodles ready, toss them with the onion and galic mixture and add the other half tablespoon of oil (in needed) so that the noodles are completely coated.

Serve with grilled or breaded chicken and your favorite veggetables!

Do you have a special request or a recipe that you love and would like to get it made over into a heart healthy version? CLICK HERE and I will try help you!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Italian Sausage (alike) Spicy Spaghetti

OK, so one of my friends makes a kickin' italian sausage spaghetti sauce the problem is italian sausage houses a lot of sodium and fat that are not heart healthy. Then one of my internet buddies asked me to work on finding out how to make italian sausage. Sooo I decided to make my own version with all the flavors of italian sausage minus the salt and fat! This one's for you Marie! Enjoy...

1 med onion (finely chopped)
4 large garlic cloves (finely chopped)
1 lb. lean ground turkey
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp parsley
1 tsp crushed red pepper
2 1/2 tsp Italian Seasoning (salt-free)
2 8oz. no salt added tomato sauce
1 14.5oz no salt added diced tomato
1 tbs red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 lb whole grain spaghetti
Fresh parsley for garnish.

In a large pot cook spaghetti as directed in the package omitting the salt.

Drizzle olive oil in a medium saucepan and caramalize onions and garlic (in other words, sautee them until they are nice and golden to intensify their flavors)over medium heat

Once the onions and garlic are just about done, toss in the ground turkey to cook.

When the turkey is completely opaque, sprinkle all the spices onto the meat, mix and let it cook for 2 minutes.

Pour the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, worcestershire sauce and vinegar into the meat mixture and simmer for 10 minutes stirring occassionally.

Toss with the pasta for even coverage garnish with some fresh parsley and enjoy!

Do you have a special request or a recipe that you love and would like to get it made over into a heart healthy version? CLICK HERE and I will try help you!