June..."Dads and Grads". Last weekend my nephew Erik graduated from High School. My Brother Steve and his wife Sara put on a wonderful party to celebrate the event. Lots of friends and family...Steve smoked six turkeys, 500 buns were sliced, my Mom made her famous potato salad (secret recipe) but I'm sure she would share it with you, David and I made tons of asian pasta salad, buttermilk coleslaw (I have to give him credit for all of the chopping) and two luscious cakes that were gone in a flash. Sara did an incredible job orchestrating the event for over 200 people. Lots of love went into every detail. I think many people went home with tupperware containers of food...it was like the "loaves and the fishes". It's times like these that we remember what is most important to us: family, friends and everyone coming together celebrate and honor each other. This weekend we will have the chance to say "thank you" to our Dads for the love and care they've given us. So...get together, it doesn't have to be elaborate...simple can be best.
Simple whole foods and top quality Shaklee nutrition is best for you, as well. Everyday we are making choices that affect our health. Choose wisely and it will pay off in your health and well being. A simple addition to a good diet is a balanced mulit-vitamin like Shaklee's wonderful Vita-Lea. The best of Shaklee science in one of the most comprehensive and balanced supplements you can buy, Vita-Lea® is specially formulated to provide you with 23 essential vitamins and minerals to promote overall health and vitality. Taken daily, Vita-Lea supports long-term colon, heart, and eye health, promotes strong bones and a healthy immune system, and provides protection against free radical damage. A superior formulation compared to other leading multivitamins.
• 2 times the calcium to support bone building and maintenance
of bone density
• 2 times the vitamin D to support calcium absorption and
healthy bones and teeth
• 2 times the beta carotene, the natural, plant-based form of
vitamin An E to promote immune, heart, and
• 2 times the magnesium to help maintain heart rhythm, as
well as muscle and nerve function
• 3 times the vitamin K to support bone metabolism and
• 6 times the boron to aid in the metabolism of vitamin D and
support bone development production
How about a grain that also packs a strong punch? We enjoyed this healthy salad made from quinoa...you can get it in most grocery stores...just ask if you can't find it. It cooks up in minutes. I usually make extra because it makes a good cereal...add some cinnamon, nuts, or berries and you have a protein rich breakfast.
Pronounced “KEEN-wah,” the ancient Incas called it the Mother Grain and they were definitely on to something good. Quinoa is close to one of the most complete foods in nature because it contains amino acids, enzymes, vitamins and mineral, fiber, antioxidants and phytonutrients. It contains all 9 essential amino acids that are required by the body as building blocks for muscles.
Quinoa Salad with Asparagus, Lemon & Feta
Excuse my over cooked asparagus...it tasted really good anyway :) Loved the combo...creamy, crunchy and tangy. "A winner" - the Abes
Serves 2 to 4
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more (to taste) for seasoning the salad
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon shredded parmigiano-reggiano
fresh cracked black pepper
1 large garlic clove, peeled and left whole
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds, toasted
1/4 cup crumbled feta
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Combine the quinoa, water and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium size pot, bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook (covered) for about 20 minutes, until the water is absorbed. Set aside.
While the quinoa cooks, spread the asparagus on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Drizzle 1 tablespoon oil, the shredded parmigiano, salt and pepper over the asparagus; toss to coat the spears evenly and spread the spears into one even layer. Place the garlic clove on top of the spears and roast for 10 to 15 minutes, until the asparagus is blistered in spots, but retains a bite. Allow the spears to cool slightly and slice into one-inch pieces. Mince the garlic.
While the asparagus roasts, whisk together the mustard and lemon juice in the bottom of a large bowl. Whisk in the remaining oil. Season with salt and pepper.
In the large bowl holding the vinaigrette, add the cooked quinoa, sliced asparagus, minced garlic and toasted almonds. Toss to distribute the vinaigrette throughout the quinoa. Taste for seasoning and add salt and/or pepper as needed. Transfer to a serving platter and top with the crumbled feta.
Serve warm, at room temperature or chilled.
Here are a few pictures of simplicity. I've been preaching about how easy this bread is to make (see my Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day post) Be "in charge" of what goes into your bread...three simple ingredients. No additives.
"Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; and good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts."
— James Beard
Want something special to make for Dad? This is so versatile...you can use whatever fruit is in season. We made this combo last weekend and loved it!!
Rhubarb Toasted Walnut Clafoutis ( what I used...but you can use almost any stone fruit or berry) Sounds fancy, but it's not. You can "jazz" it up with some whipped cream (try adding some honey or cinnamon to it) or a good vanilla ice cream.
(Adapted from Smitten Kitchen.com)
Serves at least six
Butter as needed
1/2 cup flour, more for dusting pan
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup heavy cream (I used milk)
3/4 cup milk
Dash of flavoring, such as almond or vanilla extract, a liqueur or brandy (optional)
About 3 cups of fruit (sliced pears or apples or any kind of berry or pitted cherry)
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a gratin dish, about 9 by 5 by 2 inches, or a 10-inch round deep pie plate or porcelain dish, by smearing it with butter, just a teaspoon or so. Dust it with flour, rotating pan so flour sticks to all the butter; invert dish to get rid of excess.
2. In a large bowl, whisk eggs until frothy. Add 1/2 cup flour, and whisk until smooth. Add granulated sugar and salt and whisk until combined. Add cream and milk and whisk until smooth.
3. Layer fruit over bottom of the dish. Pour batter over fruit to as close to top of dish as you dare; you may have a little leftover batter, depending on size of your dish. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until clafoutis is nicely browned on top and a knife inserted into it comes out clean. Sift some powdered sugar over it and serve warm or at room temperature. Clafoutis does not keep (not sure I agree with this); serve within a couple of hours of making it.