Autism affects tens of millions of people. One out of every 88 babies is born with autism. A new child is diagnosed every 20 minutes. Those are some pretty staggering numbers. And, its highly likely that someone you know and love needs your support to shine a bright light on this growing global health concern.
- Give a Like | Become a fan of World Autism Awareness Day on Facebook.
- Wear Blue | Find some inspiration for stylish blue threads & accessories on my Pinterest board.
- Eat & Shop Blue | Dine at your favorite neighborhood restaurants and shop at your local haunts supporting the cause.
- Light it up Blue | Purchase blue light bulbs from The Home Depot.
Although research has yet to prove it, there are a ton of ways to help combat symptoms of autism including communication and social discomfort through good food choices. It is believed that there may be a link between autism and food allergies. Gluten-free, casein-free diets may help improve speech, social and cognitive behaviors. Some delicious options for weekdays or weekends include:
- Morning Sunshine Probiotic Smoothie (gluten-free & 99% dairy free)
- Health Nut Smoothie
- PB & J Smooth Move (gluten-free & 99% dairy-free)
- Have a Heart Smoothie
- Baked Kale Chips
- Spiced Party Nuts
- Spicy Sweet Potato Fries
- Sunday Salad with Carrot Basil Vinaigrette
- Strawberry & Asparagus Quinoa Salad
- Black Bean Patties with Mole Glaze
- Flash-Roasted Green Beans
Get in the mood to wear your blue. Do your part for World Autism Awareness Day this Monday, April 2, 2012.
While it’s no secret, some of you may not know that I’ve been a blushing bride-in-training since December (my apologies for not disclosing any earlier). My handsome and handy fiance, Kris Kaufman, and I set the date and venue, and are spending most of our free time carving out all the details. Planning a wedding is so much fun–especially because I’ve come to find that being a bride-to-be comes with TONS of perks!
What I truly can’t wait for is the most chic Beverly Hills bridal event of the season UNVEILED: Bridal Style Revealed at the Beverly Canon Garden on Sunday, April 1. Why? Because trendsetting event planner, Tarin Wilson, of Plan A Events is producing the event. And, with Tarin’s sense of style at the helm, it’s the fanciest wedding event I’ve attended, complete with knowledgeable vendors, a 2012 Vera Wang bridal collection runway show and a cake and champagne tasting room. Let me say that again…CAKE & CHAMPAGNE TASTING ROOM. Not to mention a few more fantastic plans:
- Dozens of vendors and experts sharing their talents and tips in our beautiful garden of exhibitors
- The State of the Union panel hosted by Darcy Miller, Editorial Director for Martha Stewart Weddings and some of her favorite wedding experts
- Sweet and savory nibbles from some of the best local caterers
- Outdoor lounges for hanging out, enjoying the day and relaxing with friends
- The most talented wedding photographer and artist, Chris Arslain, capturing all the fun for the day
So, now that I’ve got you hooked, what if I also said you can get $10 off your ticket to Unveiled? Join me and my beautiful mom, Gerry, next Sunday, April 1, by registering online at http://www.unveiledevent.com. Just use AMB12 for a discount admission–you’ll only pay $20 per ticket.
And that’s why I love cake tasting. xoxo
This past weekend was superb. Because I had the chance to share my love of good-for-you food at the Mar Vista Farmers’ Market on Sunday! I couldn’t have asked for a better community to celebrate my inaugural public appearance. And, it gets better! I will be conducting food demos once per month at MVFM, starting Sunday, May 20, 2012!
WHO: Me and my fabulous and beautiful sidekicks, Cara (amazing sister) & Allie (childhood BFF & post-college roomie).
WHAT: We prepared Strawberry & Asparagus Quinoa Salad for patrons to enjoy. Some stopped by for a quick taste while others got cozy and watched us blanch asparagus (boil, drain & shock) and reduce balsamic vinegar down into a richer, oh-so-divine version of itself. View more photos on the Food, I Love You! Facebook page.
WHEN: Sunday, March 11, 2012
WHERE: Mar Vista Farmers’ Market
WHY: To encourage people to make healthy food choices and enjoy the food that loves them back. I also needed to get over my nerves and take care of business already!
PRINTER-FRIENDLY RECIPE: Strawberry & Asparagus Quinoa Salad
A special thanks to:
- Helen, Diana and Karen from the market. Your ability to organize the market and inspire those you meet is such a special gift. I am truly looking forward to the months ahead!
- MilkMan Cheese | That goat gouda was to-die-for. Thank you, and I.O.U. a vat of quinoa salad that’s for sure!
- J.R. Organics | Your organic strawberries are SUPER sweet right now! Yum!
- Atkins Produce | You have the juiciest navel oranges!
- Sun Coast Farms | I’ve never seen such beautiful asparagus! The tips were a gorgeous green/purple. PERFECTION!
- Mar Vista Mom for the shout out!
You and chocolate. It’s more than puppy love—it’s passion. You know, like when a buxom female cartoon character passes by the boys club and suddenly one guy’s eyes pop out of his sockets and the “Awooga” horn blows. That’s love at first sight right there. And it’s just like you’ll feel when you bake Hubba Hubba Brownies and taste these smooth, rich, silky hunks of peanut and chocolate love.
½ C. dates, pitted
1 C. water
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
¾ C. sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/3 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
½ C. whole wheat flour
¼ tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. baking powder
1 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 C. raw peanuts
Soak pitted dates in 1 cup water for four hours. Drain water.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9” x 13” baking dish with butter, oil or non-stick spray.
Combine dry ingredients into a small mixing bowl. Sift together lightly as the air will help to give the brownies a fluffy texture. Set aside.
Place soaked and drained dates into food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Transfer dates to a mixing bowl. On medium speed, beat in butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla. Slowly beat in dry mixture until fully combined. Add chocolate and ½ C. peanuts.
Pour brownie mix into baking dish. Sprinkle remaining ½ C. peanuts on top. Bake on middle rack for 30-35 minutes. Allow to cool before cutting and serving.
FOOD THAT LOVES YOU, TOO: A moderate amount of at least 70% cocoa a day is good for your heart. In fact, studies conducted by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition show that chocolate helped to improve blood flow through the arteries and improved insulin’s efficiency. Unsweetened cocoa powder contains almost no fat and is high in fiber, too! Between the cocoa and dates in this recipe, you’re good to go in the digestion department!
Printer-friendly file: Hubba_Hubba_Brownies
The juice craze has turned you into a closet smoothie snob. If it doesn’t taste like grass, dirt or chlorophyll, you snub your nose at it. Who are you kidding!? You’ve resorted to the old “Plug and Chug” method to drink it down without having to suffer through the taste of it. Drop the act and try the Have a Heart Smoothie, bursting with antioxidants and heart-healthy fruits and veggies to protect that love machine of yours. You can still have your juice and actually love to drink it, too.
¾ C. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
¼ C. beet juice
1 Tbsp. Nutella
¼ C. organic cherries, frozen
Place all ingredients into a blender in the order listed. Blend until smooth. For a great post-workout shake, add 2 Tbsp. unflavored whey or soy protein powder.
FOOD THAT LOVES YOU, TOO: Beets, bananas and cherries protect your heart, lower blood pressure, boost your immune system and strengthen your bones. Now that’s a trio of goodness!
Printer-friendly file: Have_a_Heart_Smoothie
You’re stressing because you’re throwing a Super Bowl Party for the friends and fam but you don’t know what to make. Well, you’re in luck because of this delicious, All-American, Super Bowl-worthy recipe list. Now all you have to do is sit back, relax and enjoy the people around you! Oh–and don’t forget to cook!
Set the Scene:
Do you have a favorite team? Consider a Red, White & Blue theme (since the teams are pretty much representing the SAME exact colors anyway). No offense to die-hard fans. You’ll probably be able to borrow decor from 4th of July! Easy!
You won’t disappoint if you stock up on beer for the Super Bowl. But put some thought into it…make it special by serving local beers, beers from Boston or New York, or an organic selection that pairs well with what you’re serving.
Cranberry Goat Cheese & Herb “Hot Pockets.” Like grown-up pizza rolls. They’ll disappear in a flash!
Baked Kale Chips. There’s nothing fried about ‘em. For a big crew, buy a few heads and bake away. You’ll be amazed how quickly they’ll go. Even the kids will love!
Spiced Party Nuts. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. No party is a party without party nuts. And your guests will certainly go nuts over these sassy little numbers!
Super Bowl Sunday Salad. Flavorful and colorful. Just what you want in a salad. A real crowd pleaser!
Flash Roasted Green Beans. These green machines go faster than it takes to cook ‘em!
Spicy Sweet Potato Fries. Because what’s better with an All-American meal than fries?
Not Your Grandma’s Potato Salad. Leave the mayo in the fridge and try this slightly refined potato salad on for size. Ol’ Grammie might not like the idea of it, but once she tastes, she’ll never go back!
Baked Rosemary Chicken Strips. Kids will love ‘em and parents will feel like kids again!
Pulled Pork Sliders. Might be the easiest part of the entire meal…thanks to the crock pot!
Black Bean Patties with Mole Glaze. Add instant chic to your football party by throwing in a little vegetarian fare. Plus, your friends with food restrictions will love you for it.
Garlic Ginger Chicken Wings. View this step-by-step YouTube tutorial on how to create Foodwishes.com Garlic Ginger Chicken Wings.
Ice Cream Social Network. What’s more all-American than an ice cream social?
Oats, Orange & Hazelnut Cookies. Perfect for a standing-room-only dessert line.
Healthy Tasty Chow’s Nutella Puppy Chow. Such a great dessert for a Super Bowl soiree! Don’t you just want to dig in already?
Oh How She Glow’s Itty Bitty Carrot Cake Cookies. You wouldn’t know these were vegan…or a healthy cookie! YUM!
Phew! Now, get to work STAT. Super Bowl starts in 24 hours!
Have a favorite Super Bowl recipe that you want to share? Leave a comment below.