Were you one of the many, many people that scooped up an Instant Pot during last year’s Prime Day Sale? Or Black Friday Sale? Or Cyber Monday Sale?
If you were then congrats!!! Instant Pots are awesome.
Bring on 2015 and a fresh start!
I love the new year. It’s a chance to start over. To resolve to better yourself. And if you don’t like to make resolutions then just enjoy that you are just getting closer and closer to warmer weather, which is what I live for.
This year I’ve resolved to eat ‘smarter’. I am on a mission to be more conscious about what I eat and how much. I’ve lost a lot of weight over the last year and I would like to loose another 15 or pounds before our wedding in June. But even aside from that I want to be more careful about what I put into my body and be more considerate regarding how it could potentially negatively effect how my body feels.
We’re about 2 weeks into the new year and so far so good. I have my moments when I eat a cookie but then I try to balance the sweet out with more paleo meals or salads. I’m just hoping to keep this up and settle in on something that feels good and is good for me.
Lately, I’ve noticed that I keep seeing an old New York Times article getting shared and shared over and over again on Facebook. I think it has to do with the New Year as people are looking for some insight to a better life in the new year.
The article talks of how the people on these Greek island live significantly longer than most people, it’s known as “The Island Where People Forget to Die”. People are reaching their 80’s, 90’s and even to 100 at a greater rate than the rest of the world. They are not immune to cancer and other illnesses exactly, but if the are living longer than other cultures before getting ill.
They live their lives at a different pace than the rest of the world. They enjoy slower days that are filled with friends and families while they tend to their gardens and livestock. The food that they harvest is the focal point of the meals. Fruits, vegetables, and beans are diet staples, as well as goat and fish. Rich olive oils and red wine are, of course, enjoyed as well.
But if you don’t live on Ikaria and want you experience some of their cooking yourself then get the Ikaria: Lessons on Food, Life, and Longevity from the Greek Island Where People Forget to Die cookbook by Diane Kochilas. Kochila divides her time between New York and Irakia, her family’s ancestral island. She has first hand experience cooking the foods native to the famous Greek island. She has foraged for mushrooms, dried vegetables, and made cheese, which she has made into incredible meals.
This cookbook shares the foods of the people living on Ikaria in a creative way by mixing in story telling with the recipes. And photos too!! The recipes are focused on Mezedes, which are small plates that are perfect for snacking while catching up with a friend, salads, soups, beans and legumes, meats, and fish. There are some sweet treats in there too. (I swear that one day I’ll make Loukoumades!)
There were so many recipes that I tagged to make but the one that first jumped out to me was the Mushroom Stew as I wanted something comforting for the cold weather. It was a perfect pick!
The stew is easy to prep, I think it took me just a few minutes to cut up the onions and while they were cooking I sliced kale into very thin ribbons. And as that was cooking I sliced the mushrooms. Super simple.
The recipe calls for red wine but if you don’t want to use it or have it on hand then feel free to substitute in beef broth. Skip the wine and it will be a great Whole 30 meal. Yum!
The Mushroom Stew is healthy and hearty. It’s rich tasting but not rich for you. The flavors are earthy and it has great texture. It’s great served with mashed potatoes, rice, freekeh, or crusty bread. Just be sure to have something to absorb the flavorful broth.
Embrace the ingredients, recipes, and lifestyle of the people Ikaria and you’ll live a long and happy life. Oh, so you can’t take midday naps? Well, at least make this amazing Mushroom Stew! Enjoy!
Makes 4 generous servings
While I received this complimentary cookbook for review, all opinions are my own.
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I know kids are supposed to ‘only eat’ mac and cheese, pizza, plain pasta, and hot dogs… but Autumn is a bit more adventurous than that. And I love it!
I have not been the mood to do anything lately. Well, that is not true. I want to scrapbook all day, every day. I just don’t feel right not being able to be creative. Thinking about how far behind I am working on Project Life makes me want to break out in hives. I left off at week 12… it is now week 26. kill me. And no, I don’t have to continue, but I want to. When I work at it I feel good, I really enjoy it. So I just need to get set up for it, and find some time, and I’ll feel like myself again.
Being so disinterested in cooking I have been gravitating towards quick fix dinners. Salads have been gracing our table a lot lately but this Pasta with Veggies and Cream Sauce dish was a big winner. I had just restocked the fridge and pantry from moving so I didn’t have to run out last minute to grab something. I love when that happens. I also love Philadelphia Cooking Cream. We use a lot of this to add to pasta dishes, casseroles, or on eggs. It adds a lot of flavor to dishes easily. I’m not singing their praises because they are sponsoring me, I just really like the cooking creams. Man I would love to be sponsored by them, that would be so cool since we go through so much of this stuff. Ha!
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