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Find out the latest health and organic news from our resident dietitian, Rebecca, along with recipes, tips and more!

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The content posted here is for general informational purposes only and is not medical advice. Health information changes frequently as research evolves. You should not rely on any information here as a substitute for consultation with medical professionals.

Citrus Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry sauce doesn’t just have to be for Thanksgiving day. A fresh cranberry mix can be a unique topping for a variety of recipes.

1 (12oz) package fresh cranberries
1 orange
1 lemon
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Sugar
2 Tablespoons water

Place fresh cranberries into a 1.5 quart sauce pot. Then cut the orange and lemon in half. Squeeze juice from the fruit utilizing a reamer. Juice the lemon and orange over a bowl then discard any seeds. Pour juice over the cranberries. Cut several small slices of orange and lemon rind. Place rind into the pot with berries. Add sugar and water then bring pot to a boil. Mix contents and keep at a low boil for about 5 minutes. Cranberries may begin to pop so place a lid over the top, yet allow some air to escape. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes then let contents cool completely.

Here are 5 ways to utilize this citrus cranberry sauce:
1. Add the mixture to plain Greek yogurt
2. Use it as jam on toast
3. Mix it into muffins or sweet bread
4. Use as a topping for baked brie
5. Make a glaze for chicken or pork

 

Citrus Cranberry Sauce
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Seasonal Foods for December

We often think of eating fresh seasonal foods during the summer months. However, December offers a wide variety of flavorful ripe produce. Holiday meals can be more colorful and nutritious with beets, brussels sprouts and butternut squash. All of these vegetables are at their peak of freshness in December. Cauliflower, fennel and mushrooms are also seasonal delights late in the year.

When it comes to fruit, oranges, kiwi and grapefruit are just right during the winter months. Pomegranates, pears and persimmons are also excellent choices in December. All of these fruits make delightful additions to any meal or snack. Next time you’re at the store pick up some of your favorite seasonal produce.

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Making Healthy Choices During The Holidays

Striking the right balance with food, family time, fun and relaxation around the holidays is not easy. Even if we have good intentions to eat healthier and exercise during the Christmas season we usually lose sight of that goal the minute the first cookie platter shows up. Here are a few simple tips to help you stay motivated during the busy holiday season.

  1. Plan ahead. As you put more holiday events in your schedule be sure to also put your workout time in your calendar. Picking a day and time for exercise makes it far more likely to happen. Planning ahead also means keeping your kitchen well stocked with fresh vegetables and lean protein. Pre-chopping veggies or cooking meals in advance helps most people consume a more portion controlled balanced diet.
  2. Try something new. Allow the change in your daily routine to bring change to your exercise regimen. Try a new class at the gym, sample some new YouTube workout videos or hire a personal trainer for the month.
  3. Stay moving. Even if you can’t get in a structured workout you can always do a few sit ups, push ups or squats. Start your days with a quick heart rate jump by doing 30 squats, jumping jacks and some leg lifts.
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Sweet Potato with Roasted Chick Peas and Tahini Sauce

3 sweet potatoes, baked
2 cups spinach, chopped
1 can Clearly Organic Chick Peas, drained and rinsed
1 Tablespoon Clearly Organic Olive Oil
2 teaspoons Clearly Organic Cumin
1/2 cup tahini sauce (see Clearly Organic blog for recipe)

Wash 3 medium sized sweet potatoes. Poke several holes in potatoes with a knife, then cover in foil. Bake at 375 degrees for 1.5 hours. Remove from oven and let cool on the counter for 30 minutes.

For the roasted chick peas: drain and rinse 1 can of chick peas throughly with water. Place in a sauté pan. Add olive oil and cumin. Stir to combine. Heat chick peas over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Peas will begin to pop so place lid over beans allowing some heat to escape. Cook beans for 6-8 minutes or until they begin to brown and become evenly roasted.

Cut open baked sweet potatoes. Place desired amount of chopped spinach inside. Place 1/4 cup of roasted chick peas inside each potato. Then top potato with desired amount of tahini sauce.

 

Sweet Potato with Roasted Chick Peas and Tahini Sauce

 

Sweet Potato with Roasted Chick Peas and Tahini Sauce

 

Sweet Potato with Roasted Chick Peas and Tahini Sauce

 

Sweet Potato with Roasted Chick Peas and Tahini Sauce
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Everyday Tahini Sauce

This light and savory sauce makes a great salad dressing and dip. It also provides a flavor boost for sandwich’s, wraps or roasted veggies.

1/2 cup tahini
Juice from one lemon
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon Clearly Organic Garlic Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Clearly Organic Ground Pepper

Place tahini, lemon juice and water in a mason jar. Whisk together with a fork. Add garlic powder, salt and pepper. Secure a lid on the jar. Then shake until contents are combined. Add additional water if you desire a thinner more pourable sauce.

 

Everyday Tahini Sauce

 

Everyday Tahini Sauce

 

Everyday Tahini Sauce

 

Everyday Tahini Sauce

 

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Cooking with Tahini

Tahini is ground up toasted sesame seeds. This, now widely used, ingredient originates from Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. It’s also the latest trendy food that’s being drizzled on top of a variety of dishes. You might have recognized tahini from its regular appearance in hummus. However it’s the perfect addition to salad dressing, sauces, cookies, cakes and soup. Tahini offers a rich and nutty flavor with a smooth texture that pairs well with ancient grains and just about any vegetable.

Cooking with tahini is fun and easy. A simple yet versatile tahini sauce can be a goto dip, dressing or even something unique to swirl into a brownie mix for a rich nutty flavor. Watch the Clearly Organic blog for lots of recipes featuring tahini.

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Turmeric Chicken

This simple and delicious chicken recipe goes great with sautéed mushrooms and onions. Add a side of brown rice and leafy greens and you have yourself a wholesome balanced meal.

4 boneless chicken thighs
1/3 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons Clearly Organic Turmeric
2 teaspoons Clearly Organic Paprika
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Olive Oil

Place flour, turmeric and paprika in a bowl. Stir to combine. Dredge chicken thighs in flour mixture. Place olive oil in a sauté pan. Heat oil on medium heat for 1 minute. Place chicken in sauté pan and cook on medium high for 4-6 minutes on each side, depending on thickness. Cook until each thigh is browned on the edges and cooked through.

 

Turmeric Chicken

 

Turmeric Chicken

 

Turmeric Chicken

 

Turmeric Chicken
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Organic Chili

1 lb organic grass fed lean beef
1 organic yellow onion, diced
1 pkg Clearly Organic Chili Seasoning
1 can (15oz) Clearly Organic Tomato Sauce
1 can (28oz) Clearly Organic Diced Tomatoes
1 can (15oz) Clearly Organic Corn
1 can (15oz) Clearly Organic Black Beans, rinsed
1 can (15oz) Clearly Organic Kidney Beans, rinsed

In a medium size stock pot place1 lb of beef, crumbled, and diced onion. Heat pot to medium high heat stirring contents occasionally. Cook until meat is evenly browned about 7-9 minutes. Add chili seasoning packet. Stir seasoning into meat and onion mix. Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, corn and rinsed beans. Stir ingredients then let soup come to a boil. Turn heat down to a simmer. Let chili simmer for at least an hour, stirring occasionally, so flavors can blend. Serve warm with your favorite organic garnishes such as corn chips, cheese, scallions, sour cream or avocado.

 

Organic Chili

 

Organic Chili

 

Organic Chili

 

Organic Chili

 

Organic Chili
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Making Organic Soup

A great way to embrace the coming winter months is by making a hearty soup loaded with seasonal favorites. It’s also comforting to know you can make your next batch of soup or stew completely organic. A wide variety of organic tomatoes sauces, diced tomatoes, corn and other canned goods are now readily available.

To make organic soup simply look for your favorite veggies in the organic variety. Then, if you’re wanting meat in your soup, buy organic grass fed beef or free range chicken. Lastly, seek out organic canned tomatoes, beans, broth and corn. Watching for low sodium and no salt added canned goods is also wise. Lowering the sodium in a can of beans is easy if you place the contents of the can in a colander then throughly rinse the beans. Check out the Clearly Organic blog for an organic chili recipe!

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Cooking with Turmeric

The root spice turmeric has long been a steady force in Caribbean and Indian cuisine. Now that Americans are becoming more health conscience, consumers are looking for foods with anti-inflammatory properties and active ingredients that offer beneficial nutrients. Turmeric is actually a root, much like ginger, that has a deep golden color. Ground turmeric can be found in the spice section of most grocery stores. Here are five ways to implement turmeric to your meal plan.

  1. Add 1 teaspoon to your favorite smoothie for added flavor and nutrients.
  2. Sauté vegetables with coconut oil and turmeric. Studies show that combining turmeric with black pepper and a fat source like olive oil or coconut oil can improve the absorption of turmerics nutrients. Thus enhancing its ability to fight cancer, Crohn’s disease and irritable bowel syndrome.
  3. Add color and nutrition to rice with turmeric. Place 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon in the water when cooking your favorite rice variety.
  4. Sprinkle turmeric over the top of hummus for added flavor.
  5. Add extra nutrients to boxed mac and cheese by adding turmeric to the cheese sauce.

 

 

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