December 13

Favorite Things: Food List

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I used to watch the Oprah show every day and one of the things I miss most this time of the year is watching her “Favorite Things” episodes in which she’d gift her audience with dozens of her favorite items, from the  most decadent chocolate treats to cashmere scarves. Whether I’m looking for a new move to try in the gym, a savvy nutrition tip or where that stranger got her gorgeous lipstick, I love asking people about the things that work best for them. I thought, why not share some of mine? For the next few days, i’ll post a list of tips/tricks/items I adore in categories from food to fitness to beauty products.  To take a cue from The Sound of Music, these are a few of my favorite things…

1. CALIFIA FARMS ALMOND MILK HOLIDAY NOG: I just discovered this by accident while perusing Whole Foods this week and it was so holiday-tastic, I had to put it on the list! If you love eggnog, you’ll love this! I’ll admit, its not as thick as regular eggnog because its an almond milk, but it packs all of the yuletide flavor of the real stuff! Oh, and its 50 calories per serving with only 8g of sugar. You’re welcome.

2. ZHENA’S GYPSY TEA – CARAMEL CHAI: It never fails – when evening falls and I’m on the couch watching TV, my sweet tooth beckons. When I’m trying to watch my sugar and late night carb intake, I opt for a dessert-like tea to satiate my cravings. This tea, brewed with a splash of almond milk and stevia, tastes like spicy, caramel heaven. I also love this brand’s coconut chai, chocolate chai and hazelnut chai. All organic and fair trade too.

3. BRUSSELS SPROUTS: I’m not exactly sure why these gems often get such a bad rap for being unpalatable because I find them to be absolutely delicious! I eat them at least once a week and always get excited to make them. Try sauteing them lightly in olive oil with  balsamic vinegar (see link for recipe). I also like to add either fresh grated Parmesan cheese or a light drizzle of grade B maple syrup. Eat a big bowl full (don’t worry – they are low cal) and you’ll soak up tons of fiber, vitamin C, D, and K.

4.FLAVORED BALSAMIC VINEGAR: We all know salad dressings are an evil trap of high calorie and high fat content so how can one enjoy a big salad without skimping on flavor? My favorite trick is artisan flavored balsamic vinegar. I buy mine from the Florida Olive Oil Co. and my favorite is the Key West Citrus or the Fig balsamic vinegar. They are thicker and richer than what you normally would see in a plain balsamic so they adhere well to greens in salad. So delicious!

5. GREEK YOGURT DESSERT: When late night tea isn’t enough to calm my dessert-loving demons, I turn to my favorite treat: Greek Yogurt. I mix 6 oz nonfat Greek yogurt (the size of the pre-portioned ones you can buy at the store) with 1 packet of stevia and whatever flavor I am craving: dark cocoa powder, peanut butter, vanilla extract, cinnamon, etc. Add in a half scoop of protein powder and I swear, it tastes like a bowl of frosting. Serve chilled and its like a pudding or pop it in the freezer for 10min to get a more ice cream like treat.

Tomorrow’s favorite things: Beauty Products!

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