Tag Archives: healthy

Popcorn: The Ultimate Snack?

Popcorn. This simple snack may not be on some people’s radar these days when we are swimming in a sea of ultra-processed snack foods in almost any flavor one can imagine. However, popcorn is probably one of the best snack foods one can consume.

It can be made in minutes and with basic kitchen equipment. One can easily control the amount of added salt and fat, as well as flavor it with almost anything you can think of (Everything Bagel seasoning is a great one to try).

Have the urge to snack for dinner? Popcorn is a top contender for the healthiest snack to eat this way. So, go for it. No need to wait for a special occasion or movie night.

Homemade popcorn is an unprocessed whole grain. The core of starch stored inside the fiber based husk is what makes it pop. It is high in fiber at almost 4 grams per in a 4 cup serving. It also has a high amount of polyphenols that aid digestion and help lower blood sugar.

Popcorn is a filling snack due in part simply to the volume it takes up in the stomach. This is a boon that keeps popcorn eaters from over doing it while snacking. You’ll feel fuller after eating popcorn than chips or other processed/fried snacks.



A Zesty Take on Baked Cod

Pistachio Crusted Lemon Cod


What You’ll Need

3 TBS extra virgin olive oil

1 lemon, finely grate the zest, fruit should be cut into wedges

1 TSP Italian seasoning

1/4th TSP fine ground sea salt

Fresh ground black pepper

1 LB cod (or pollock) fillet, cut it into four equal-ish pieces

1/3 CUP roasted, salted, shelled, pistachios, chop finely


How to Cook It

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a backing sheet with parchment paper (silicone baking mat).

Combine olive oil, lemon zest, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper in small bowl.

Put cod on prepped baking sheet. Spoon seasoned oil on top of cod pieces. Press tops of fillets into pistachios to form a crust. Place back on baking sheet.

Bake about 15 minutes. Fish should be sizzling at the edges, opaque with a firm middle.

Serve with lemon wedges.

Optional Tatar Sauce: mayonnaise, chopped dill pickles, lemon juice, Cajun seasoning, Dijon mustard, salt and pepper. Play with ingredients to taste.



Tomatoes: The Perfect Summer Food

While many may already consider the tomato a perfect summer food, during a heatwave which was struck the much of the US over the past few weeks the tomato proves its worth as being more than worthy for summer eating.

Tomatoes are already great for you. A raw tomato is a good source of lycopene, an important antioxidant as well as containing vitamin C, potassium and folate. And all you have to do is bite into one!

While cooking tomatoes does boos the lycopene content there is still plenty in an uncooked tomato to benefit you. If you want to boost your antioxidant intake eat them with a little olive oil. The little bit of fat will help increase lycopene absorption.

Additionally, tomatoes are a water heavy food which will help keep you hydrated.

It only takes a little effort with a knife and you can turn tomatoes into the “meat” of a meal by using them on sandwich or salad or just enjoying them all by themselves. Something like a bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich takes little effort.

Tomatoes provide all of this without the discomfort of hot kitchen!

Hot Cross Buns

Since Easter is coming up in just over a week, it’s about that time where you see hot cross buns in the grocery stores. Traditionally in England they are eaten on Good Friday. Growing up, we had them on Palm Sunday (which is a few days away this year.)

But are they healthy? If you read a few labels for some you can purchase you might see a whole lot of ingredients that don’t really need to be present. Why not try to make your own? This year, I will try to make them more healthy – perhaps some whole wheat flour instead of just all white flour. Or even whole grain pastry flour for a lighter texture. Perhaps we can substitute some honey for the sugar. To make them with even sugar, skip the sugar cross and make indents instead. Maybe just shake a little bit of sifted confectioner’s sugar on top.

Here are some links to healthier hot cross buns (they are mostly from England so you may need to do some conversions):

12WBT (12 week body transformation)
The Healthy Chef

The Victor crew

What’s in Season?

The Victor crew found a great website if you are looking to eat fresh. You can put in your state and time of year and get a list of what produce in general is in season at that time in your area. Not only will it show the list of produce that are in season, but a link to a recipe for that item. They also have a “Learn More” link you can click to see its history, some facts, cultivation information, the environmental impact, what to look for when buying, nutrition, how to store, how to cook, and another recipe. On the bottom you can also click on the link to find Farmer’s Markets in your state.

Eat Local