Health Benefits of Pineapple

PBC Blog General 2 (15)Pineapples are on sale!  This sweet refreshing fruit is probably on sale at your local grocery store and if not it will probably be on sale soon.  So it is a great time to learn about the health benefits of this festive fruit, but there are some things you want to be aware of.

Benefits

Pineapples are a low-calorie fruit but they pack a hard punch with Vitamin C.  In fact, pineapple has about 79 mg of vitamin C per cup – which is more than orange.  Vitamin C is well known for being a safe and super helpful nutrient.  It will not cure your cold but it can protect you against other things.  According to WebMD , their team of doctor and researchers, benefits include:

Protection against immune system deficiencies cardiovascular disease, prenatal health problems, eye disease, and even skin wrinkling.

Buyer Beware

There are some risks to consuming too much pineapple.  Yes, there can be too much of a good thing – like… nausea, heartburn, diarrhea… you know the tune.  And this can have you reaching for that pink bottle.  Live Science does a great job of sharing risks, and even more health information on pineapple.

Picking a Pineapple

So what is the best way to pick a pineapple?  I feel like pineapples, cantaloupes, watermelons, honeydew, and other similar fruits with thick skins/rinds are difficult to select.  However, Organic Facts has taken some of the guesswork out.

The ripeness and freshness of a pineapple can be determined by the smell if its base (no matter how green the crown is). Pick a pineapple, the base of which smells sweet, just like pineapple juice. A fragrance-free pineapple is either harvested too early or is not sweet as it should be.

Recipes

For a fresh take on pineapple check out these unique plant-based pineapple recipes.

Also, Mr. Macka B wrote a song, or rather rap, about it. Want to hear it?

 

Photo by Carlota Trillo on Unsplash

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Best Vegan Frozen Dessert

I tried vegan frozen desserts years ago and was not impressed.  However, vegan frozen desserts have come a LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG way!  Since starting a plant-based diet I have been on the search for what I would call the best vegan frozen dessert.  As I try new flavors I will update the list.   There are tons of flavors out there!  And it seems like mainstream creameries I jumping on the vegan bandwagon.

Let me know what to try next!

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Top Vegan Frozen Desserts

  1. So Delicious Very Vanilla (Cashew Milk Based)
  2. Ben and Jerry’s P.B. & Cookies (Almond Milk Based)
  3. So Delicious Salted Caramel Cluster (Cashew Milk Based)
  4. So Delicious Bananas Foster(Cashew Milk Based)
  5. So Delicious Peachy Maple Pecan (Cashew Milk Based)
  6. Breyers Non-Dairy Cookies and Cream (Almond Milk Based)
  7. Breyers Non-Dairy Peanut Butter (Almond Milk Based)
  8. So Delicious Dark Chocolate Truffle (Cashew Milk Based)
  9. Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Chocolate Fudge Brownie (Almond Milk Based)
  10. Halo Top Non-Dairy Pancakes & Waffles (Coconut Milk Based)
  11. Halo Top Chocolate Almond Crunch (Coconut Milk Based)

 

Slow Cooker Overnight Steel Cut Oats

My current addiction includes eating steel cut oats with berries and walnuts for breakfast. The quick cooking steel cut oats are ok but expensive.  The regular steel cut oats taste better and are way cheaper.  You can buy them from the bulk bin at your local health foods store or co-op.  But let’s be real, being a full-time mom, employee, caregiver, and wife.  I honestly don’t have time every morning to make steel cut oats on the stove.

Ain’t nobody got time for that!!

And my pocketbook can’t afford me to stop by Whole Food every morning for a cup of steel cut oats from the hot bar.

So I began the search for a recipe but I had a hard time finding one that was made completely with water.  So after much trial an error I have discovered one that works.  If you try it let me know in the comments below.

 

Slow Cooker Overnight Steel Cut Oats

  • Servings: 4
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Steel Cut Oats
  • 6 cups water
  • 4 pinches of salt
  • 4 pint size jars

Directions

  1. Place 1/4 cup of the steel cut oats into each mason jar.
  2. Then pour 1 1/2 cups of water and one pinch of salt into each.
  3. Place the jars into the slow cooker/crockpot and add water to the crockpot until the outside of the jars are covered about 3/4 from the top.
  4. Cover and cook on high for 3 hours.
  5. Turn down slow cooker/crockpot to warm and allow oats to remain in the pot overnight.
  6. In the morning, give each jar a stir. If you would like to store them to eat later in the week, allow then the cool completely. Then cover each jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Oats then can be reheated in the microwave and desired toppings added.  Also, these oats won’t go all weird on you once cooled.  Unlike rolled oats, steel cut oats will become a bit creamer each day.

5 Favorite Strawberry Recipes

Strawberry season will soon be here and I almost can’t wait!  Strawberries are red, small, sweet, and shaped like hearts.  How cute are they… I mean really?  When I was a kid we would go strawberry picking once during the season and come back with buckets of berries, red rings around our mouths, and full tummies.

Then arriving home we would wash them and transfer them into large bowls.  We kept some of them fresh but I remember helping with the prep work for soooo many recipes.  So here are five of my favorite strawberry recipes from Pinterest.  My family and I have tried them all and I have provided some additional insight to them.

Macerated Strawberries

This is recipe is super easy and the most dynamic of them all.  If you want to macerate strawberries without instructions or a recipe you can!  Just slice strawberries, add sugar, stir and let stand.  If you just added the sugar or orange juice as shown in the recipe you can freeze them.  Then you can top anything you want with the strawberries once thawed.  Put them on top of cereal, ice cream, oatmeal, cake… the list can go on.  But my all-time favorite way is to top them on My Grandma’s Old Fashioned Pound Cake with a dollop of whip cream.

Strawberry & Cream Pie

I first tasted this pie in the 80’s when my mother made after we went strawberry picking. I felt like a unicorn princess whenever I ate this.  It was that good!  If you buy a graham cracker crust instead of making your own, as mentioned in the recipe, you can still have that unicorn princess feeling that I had, just the same.

Strawberry Overnight Oats

I tried this in the fall of 2017 when I during my overnight oats craze,  of which I am still on.  I tried it just as the recipe directed.  However, the frozen strawberries we ok. Some of them were still kind of frozen.  But if you use fresh strawberries you are better off.  More of the strawberry flavor comes through and you are free from needing the chew frozen bits of strawberry.

Strawberry Mango Salsa

I first tried this recipe with grilled chicken years ago and it was DIVINE.  If you want to make it a full meal with the chicken just add rice.  And for my vegan friends, this is great with fried plantains, and rice in a burrito!

No Churn Strawberry Ice Cream

No ice cream maker means no problem!  Kids can really help towards the end.  However, forwarning, they may not be able to wait for it to freeze.

If you try any of them let me know!

My Grandma’s Old Fashioned Pound Cake

Many memories of my grandmother revolve around food.  Her fried chicken, vegetable beef soup, mustard greens, pecan pie, and especially her pound cake.  I have to say that her pound cake is like none other. It has the perfect crumb with a slightly textured crust.

The featured image is my grandmother’s actual recipe in her handwriting with a few edits. I also added some clarity to the recipe below that she forgot to note in the recipe.

I know this recipe does not fit into my normal plant-based vegan and vegan recipes, but I wanted to share this recipe with the world in her memory.

Old Fashioned Pound Cake

  • Servings: 1 bundt cake
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 3 cups sugar (My grandmother always used Domino Granulated Sugar.)
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 6 eggs, separated and at room temperature
  • 2 tsp lemon extract
  • 3 cups sifted flour (My grandmother always use Swans Cake Flour.)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, blend sugar and shortening until light and fluffy.
  2. Add egg yolks one at a time and beat well after each.
  3. Add lemon extract.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift dry ingredients together (flour, salt, and baking soda).
  5. Alternate mixing dry ingredients and the buttermilk into the larger bowl with blended sugar and shortening. Begin mixing by starting with the dry ingredients and be sure to end with the dry ingredients as well.
  6. In another bowl, beat egg whites until stiff.
  7. Carefully fold egg whites into batter.
  8. Pour batter into a well greased and floured 10-inch tube/bundt pan.
  9. Place cake in a cold oven on the bottom rack.  The over should NOT have been preheated.
  10. Turn oven on at 350 degrees and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes.
  11. Once done cooking remove from oven and allow to cool.  To remove from pan take a knife around the inner and outer circle edges. Place plate or serving dish on top of the pan, then turn pan over quickly.

Tasty Peanut Noodle Pasta Salad Recipe Review

Oh, my freaking tasty goodness! I think this salad changed my life.  Tasty’s Peanut Noodle Pasta Salad was simple yet had a complex flavor.  I did make some minor changes to the recipe for my liking but certainly didn’t stray too far.

 

I first saw this recipe on my Facebook feed.  I was a bit cautious because in the past I was not a bit fan of peanut butter mixed with sauces let alone pasta.  But the video kind of got me going.

The recipe certainly was flavorful.  It only had a little bit of heat from the siracha but not enough to even tingle your tongue.  As mentioned, I have made variations, however, I do find that the cucumbers do play a key roll in making sure the salad remains moist.  Without those, you may need to add a bit more water to help make sure the sauce is not too sticky after it has sat for an hour.  Other adjustments I have made:

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Replaced Raw Ginger with 1/4 tsp of Ginger Powder – The fresh raw ginger does have present a strong crisp peppery flavor.  With the ginger powder, the taste was a bit more subdued.

Replaced Linguine Noodles with Fettuccine – First, the linguine noodles taste better on the palate than the fettuccine noodles.  If the mouthy density of the noodles doesn’t make a difference to you then as the recipe states, any noodle will work.

86 the Cilantro – I have made this salad several times and sometimes I do and don’t have cilantro.  Either way, the salad still turns out great.  Knowing some people have a real aversion to cilantro having it on the side is a great option too.  But to other lovers of cilantro like myself, it brings the flavor that only cilantro can offer.

No Peanuts, No Problem – I like the crunch that the peanut offers in contracts to the soft noodles.  However, the fresh peppers also provide a crunch but it does not pack a punch.  So no peanuts no problem…you will still have a great salad.

Tasty has done it again! Try the recipe for yourself!

This is NOT a sponsored or an affiliate post.  I have NOT been compensated for these statements. All opinions remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the companies.  Also, the links in this post are not maintained.

The Spruce Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe Review

I have been searching high and low; all over Pinterest and the internet to find a decent vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe with practical ingredients.  Because you never know when a chocolate chip cookie craving is going to hit!  In my search, came across The Spruce Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie in my search and I am so glad I did!

 

I had all of the ingredients in my pantry with the exception of the Ener-G-Egg Replacer.  So for the two eggs that it called for I added what I like to call the Baking Powder Egg Replacer.

PBC Blog Recipe ReviewsTo make the baking soda egg replacer all you need to do is mix 2 TBSP, 1 TBSP and 2 TSP Baking Soda in a small bowl.  Then add it to the appropriate step in your recipe.  This mixture will be the equivalent of one egg.  So for The Spruces Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe, you will need to double the mixture for the replacement of two eggs.

I follow the recipe in detail. In addition, I also made sure to use vegan chocolate chips stirring them in with a wooden spoon at the end.

Using a small ice cream scooper I placed them on a baking sheet.  However, I think you could readily roll these into perfectly shaped circles with your hands.  I popped them into the oven for the allotted time.  With my first batch, they were soft and chewy in the middle but also did have that nice brown color – they were kind of light.  So for the following batches, I left them in the oven for about two minutes longer.  This made them nearly perfect with crisp edges and a soft center.

Over the next couple of days, my kids, husband and my mother munched on them.  In fact, as I type this post I am eating one now and they are still so soft; not a dry crumb or brittle cookie in sight.  To The Spruce, thank you so much for sharing the recipe!

This is NOT a sponsored or an affiliate post.  I have NOT been compensated for these statements. All opinions remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the companies.  Also, the links in this post are not maintained.

 

This Is Me: Why I Became Vegan

2017 was a year that changed me in ways to this day I still don’t even know. One change was my path from Paleo, to vegetarian and finally to plant-based vegan. So what pushed me to make this change? The answer is my husband and mom.

PBC ERIn early 2017, my mother had a major stroke that impacted her cognition and caused her to lose sight on the right half of both of her eyes.  And within the same month, she was diagnosed with a highly aggressive cancer.  Today she is a cancer survivor and is doing well given all of what 2017 threw her way.  Nonetheless, the first six months of 2017 shook me to my core and led me to a lifestyle change.

Moreover, during the summer, my husband experienced a cardiac event that led to the ambulance rushing him away from home to the hospital in the dark and early hours of the morning.  Long story short there he is ok but he had to make changes to his diet as well – doctors orders.  I was surprised that I didn’t have a heart attack myself considering all of what I had encountered – but my husband was the last stray.  I had to make a change that would increase my chances of living a longer and healthier life.

In years past, I had sprints of pescatarianism and lacto-ovo-vegetarianism.  In 2016, I completed a Whole 30  which led to a paleo diet that I followed until my mother had a stroke in January 2017.  Over the next few months, traveling between home, work, kid’s school, radiation treatments, doctor offices and hospitals my eating habits when into the “trash”.  I ate whatever was easy and convenient.  Lot’s of pizza, fast-foods, ice cream, burgers and chicken nuggets.  To be honest I was in survival mode and food was comforting me instead of nourishing my body.

So on July 12, 2017, I became a vegetarian…”cold turkey”.  Then 90 days later, I completely transitioned to a plant-based vegan diet.  My skin has never looked clearer, my “numbers” are what they were 10 years ago and the boost of energy is REAL!  However, the energy element didn’t really kick in until about 6-8 weeks into me being vegan.

Now as a wife, mother, daughter, caregiver, full-time employee, blogger, and a crafter who is also vegan I still get tired – but who wouldn’t.  But I feel better about my food choices and in greater control of my health.  Overall, I became vegan because I wanted to increase my chances of living a longer and healthier life for not only myself but my family.  Though I must say I am beginning to develop personal feelings and convictions towards the treatment of animals in our food industry…but that is a blog post for another day!

5 Favorite Avocado Recipes

Over this year I have made a lot of changes to my diet.  However, one item that certainly has been a consistent member of my menu is AVOCADOS!  Yes, the fruit that is a berry a.k.a the “alligator pear”.   I have had it on toast, grits, salads,  and smoothies just to name a few.  Today I want to share my love for avocados with you too.  So here are five of my favorite avocado recipes from Pinterest.  All have been tried and truly are delicious.  If you try any of them let me know below!