The Perfect Holiday Gift!

SOUPS!

This handmade gift is not only delicious but also adorable!! I made these soups as a gift for my mom and they came out great. They are fun and simple to make! I highly recommend these for a holiday gift or just to decorate your kitchen.

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Top to bottom: 5 Bean, Spicy Black Bean, Split Pea, Italian Barley, Chicken Noodle, Coconut Curry

5 BEAN SOUP

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 cup pinto Beans
  • 1/3 cup green peas
  • 1/3 cup black beans
  • 1/3 cup great northern beans
  • 1/3 cup kidney beans
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoons onions
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • 1 veggie bouillon cubes

INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE JAR:

  1. Layer all ingredients in a clean glass jar (pint size) in the order listed. Close lid, add tag, and gift.

TO MAKE SOUP:

  1. Remove wrapper from bouillon cube and add it, plus all remaining ingredients, plus five cups of water and one 14 ounce can of diced tomatoes to a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the beans are tender and the soup is thick, about 90 minutes, adding more water as necessary to soften the beans. Remove and discard bay leaf before serving. Season to taste.

SPICY BLACK BEAN SOUP

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 cup black beans
  • 1 tablespoon dried onion
  • 1 tablespoon dried garlic
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 veggie bouillon cube
  • 1 chile pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE JAR:

  1. Layer all ingredients in a clean glass jar (pint size) in the order listed. Close lid, add tag, and gift.

TO MAKE SOUP:

  1. Remove wrapper from bouillon cube, add it, plus all remaining ingredients, plus six cups of water into a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the beans are tender and the soup is thick, about 90 minutes, adding more water as necessary to soften the beans Remove and discard the chile pepper and bay leaves before serving. Season to taste.

 

SPLIT PEA SOUP

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups split green peas
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 tablespoons dried chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon dried minced garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube

INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE JAR:

  1. Layer all ingredients in a clean glass jar (pint size) in the order listed. Close lid, add tag, and gift.

TO MAKE SOUP:

  1. Remove wrapper from bouillon cube and add it, plus all remaining ingredients, plus four cups of water to a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the peas are tender, about 30 minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaf. Stir in one cup of chopped ham before serving. Season to taste.

 

ITALIAN BARLEY SOUP

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup pearled barley
  • ½ cup sundried tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon dried chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon dried minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1 veggie bouillon cube

 INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE JAR:

  1. Layer all ingredients in a clean glass jar (pint size) in the order listed. Close lid, add tag, and gift.

TO MAKE SOUP:

  1. Remove wrapper from bouillon cube and add it, plus all remaining ingredients, plus four cups of water and one 14-ounce can of diced tomatoes to a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the barley is tender, about 20 minutes. Serve topped with grated Parmesan. Season to taste.

 

CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tablespoons dried chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon dried minced garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube
  • 2 cups wide egg noodles

INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE JAR:

  1. Layer all ingredients in a clean glass jar (pint size) in the order listed. Close lid, add tag, and gift.

TO MAKE SOUP:

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté one diced carrot and one diced stalk of celery until just tender, about 5 minutes. Unwrap the bouillon cube from the soup mix, and then add it, plus all remaining ingredients to the saucepan. Add in 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until the noodles are cooked through, about 10 minutes. Stir in 2 cups chopped cooked chicken before serving. Season to taste.

 

COCONUT CURRY SOUP

INGREDIENTS

  • 2/3 cup orange lentils
  • 2/3 cup green lentils
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoons dried chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon dried minced garlic
  • 2 veggie bouillon cubes
  • 1 chile pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE JAR:

  1. Layer all ingredients in a clean glass jar (pint size) in the order listed. Close lid, add tag, and gift.

TO MAKE SOUP:

  1. Remove wrapper from bouillon cubes and add them, plus all remaining ingredients, plus four cups of water and one 14-ounce can of full fat coconut milk to a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 20 minutes. Remove and discard the chile pepper before serving. Season to taste.
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Kate’s Kitchen – Salmon and Pesto Salad

For this recipe you will need:

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Salmon fillets

Sweet potatoes

Arugula

Olive Oil

Pesto

Shredded Parmesan

Lemon

Garlic Salt

 

Begin by cutting sweet potatoes into desired size pieces and add to skillet with olive oil. Brown as desired. (Cook on high for approx 10 minutes, cover and lower heat for approx 10 minutes)

Cut salmon into desired size portions and place in separate skillet (face down) with olive oil. Cook on high for 3-5 minutes, cover and cook on low for 10-12 minutes depending on size of fillet.

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In a bowl, mix arugula, shredded parmesan and pesto for salad.

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Serve salmon on arugula and pesto salad. Season salmon with garlic salt and lemon. Potatoes served on side.

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Introducing Kate’s Kitchen!

Hello fitness friends!

Due to an overwhelming amount of people responding “YES!” to wanting Kate’s Kitchen to be a thing, it’s going to be a thing! I’ll be posting live videos one to two times each week of me cooking or meal prepping. The ingredients list, step by step instructions and final product photo will be included.

I’m so excited to share some of my recipes and hopefully encourage more people to cook at home! Not only is it usually a healthier option but it is much less expensive to buy groceries than to eat out.

Disclaimer: If the meal does not come out good, you did something wrong. All of my food is delicious.

See you in Kate’s Kitchen!!

Low Calorie Spicy Margarita

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Sometimes a hectic week just calls for an evening spicy marg while you sit on the couch and catch up on Master Chef. Or maybe it’s just me. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Here is my Spicy ‘Master Chef’ Marg without all the sugary mixers!

SPICY MARG

1 SHOT OF TEQUILA (CAZADORES)

1/2 SHOT OF MEZCAL (VIDA)

1/2 SHOT OF SPICY JALAPENO LIQUOR OR ORANGE LIQUEUR (GRAND MARNIER)

FRESH LIME JUICE

AGAVE

GINGER KOMBUCHA

SERVE OVER ICE WITH MINT LEAVES

 

Taco Tuesday Two Ways!

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TACO SALAD

COOK/BROWN KOSHER GROUND TURKEY & TRADER JOE’S HOT TACO SEASONING MIX IN SKILLET

SAUTÉE ORGANIC SWEET CORN, ORGANIC ORANGE & YELLOW BELL PEPPERS & SHISHITO PEPPERS IN SKILLET TOGETHER WITH OLIVE OIL

BAKE BROCCOLI DRIZZLED WITH OLIVE OIL IN OVEN AT 350 DEGREES FOR 10-12 MINUTES

HEAT BLACK BEANS FOR 3-5 MINUTES

MIX TOGETHER OVER ORGANIC SPINACH, SEASON WITH FRESH BLACK PEPPER & CHOPPED CILANTRO TO GARNISH

 

Lettuce Wrapped Tacos

LETTUCE WRAPPED TACOS

PREPARE SPANISH RICE, APPROX 10-15 MINUTES

COOK/BROWN KOSHER GROUND TURKEY & TRADER JOE’S HOT TACO SEASONING MIX IN SKILLET

HEAT BLACK BEANS FOR 3-5 MINUTES

TO MAKE GUACAMOLE: MASH 1 AVOCADO, ADD LEMON JUICE, BLACK PEPPER, GARLIC SALT & YELLOW ONION – MIX

USE LIVING LETTUCE FOR TACO “SHELL”. ADD GROUND TURKEY, SALSA, GUACAMOLE, CHOPPED CILANTRO. SERVE WITH RICE & BEANS.

Juice Cleanse + Elimination Diet

If you’re into health and fitness you are probably familiar with ‘juicing’. I recently finished a 3-day Pressed Juicery cleanse followed by an elimination diet and received a lot of questions so I would like to provide some feedback.

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Why Do A Cleanse?

There are a number of reasons why someone might choose to start a juice cleanse. There are also varied durations for how long you would like to do a cleanse. My reasoning? I was feeling boated every day, though I was eating the same healthy foods (fish, white meat, fruit, vegetables, etc.). I felt like I was retaining water, though my hydration and salt consumption levels stayed the same. My energy levels were low and I did not feel good on the inside. I felt uncomfortable in my skin and like my midsection was going to burst.

Note: Feeling bloated is not the same thing and feeling full or gaining weight. It is an abnormal swelling or increase in diameter of the abdominal area.

I decided I would like to do a combination of an elimination diet and a juice cleanse. The elimination diet is a short-term eating plan that eliminates certain foods that might be causing allergies or other digestive reactions – then reintroduces the foods one at a time in order to determine which foods are, and are not, well-tolerated.

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Step One: The Cleanse

I began with a 3-day Pressed Juicery cleanse. I ate an apple on the first day (to help eliminate wastes that were backed up), I ate an avocado on day two (since I did not take any days off work during my cleanse and needed energy), and ate two hard-boiled eggs on day three (to test my body’s reaction to eggs with nothing else in my system).

The beauty of doing juice cleanse is you can make it what you want! Based on the outcome I was trying to achieve – regular elimination of wastes, decrease bloating, and discover foods I have developed an intolerance to – this is how I wanted to carry out my cleanse. I am happy to report I achieved the outcome I was hoping for. I noticed a significant decrease in bloating immediately, affirmed hard-boiled eggs were not the issue for me bloating wise, and had SO much more energy.

Step Two: The Elimination Diet

After I complete my 3-day cleanse I began a modified elimination diet. I am lactose intolerant so I was able to skip Phase 1 since I already know what comes of consuming dairy – NOTHING GOOD.

I moved through Phases 2-4 and took notes of what caused and did not cause bloating.

If you deal with boating on a regular basis you might consider taking an enzyme to help with digestion. I take Enzymedica Digest Gold. It is best taken WITH food vs. taking it before or after you eat. I would highly recommend it.

Step Three: Look And Feel Better

After completing my juice cleanse and modified elimination diet I can definitely say I feel like I am back to my normal self. Energy restored, feeling good in my skin and flat in my abdomen.

If you have questions about stubborn bloating, juicing, the elimination diet or anything else please do not hesitate to ask! Email: BodiesByKate@gmail.com

The Mind-Body Connection

Background Music (and therefore) My Current Mindset –
Artist: The Cinematic Orchestra
Album: Every Day

Intentional Exercise & Neural Pathways

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Have you ever heard the expression “Just going through the motions”? When you are exercising, do you find yourself just going through the motions or are you moving with intent and purpose?

When I work with my clients I place emphasis on moving with purpose; to feel the exercise, to match their breathing to the movements, to relax certain muscles, and engage others. Moving with intent and purpose means you are stimulating a connection to grow between the brain/spinal cord and the rest of your body.

Thought – wish – desire – intention – neural signal – signal transfer by nerves – completion of intended action. 

This is the neural process simplified. The job of the spinal cord is to convey the electrical impulses from the brain to the many nerves in the body which attach to the muscles, which carry out the desired action. Exercising and moving with intent strengthens this connection.

Let’s take performing a squat, for example. When you perform a squat, what is your thought process, if any? Do you perform the movement quickly and consider that to be complete and successful? Or is there a mental checklist you go through during the phases of the squat (starting posture, core engaged, where your weight is being held, breathing, muscles to relax, muscles to contract, finishing posture)? If having some sort of mental checklist describes your thought process, you are moving with intent. You are building a deeper connection between your nervous system (brain & spinal cord) and your muscular system.

We know that a strong connection between the nervous and muscular systems leads to greater muscle hypertrophy (growth) after multiple exercise sessions. If you are not seeing progress or change in your body, ask yourself, have you been just going through the motions? 

Mental Stress & The Physical Body

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Chronic stress has been called “the silent killer.” It compromises our immune system and it’s a major contributor to some of the most persistent and chronic diseases of our time, like heart disease, cancer, obesity, Alzheimer’s, depression, and more.

It’s also a fact that it’s increasingly harder to avoid excess and constant stress. Too many of us live our lives in a constant white-knuckled, jaw-clenched state with our adrenal glands working overtime—all of which results in stored toxins and blocked energy (or chi). We become physically, mentally, and emotionally stagnated, and our systems slow down.

It’s important to understand that stress is a reaction—we can choose how to react to stressful situations. Lugging emotions, trauma, guilt, resentment, and memories with us can compound day-to-day stress, to further age us, wreak havoc on our bodies and health, and result in serious long-term consequences, such as excess weight, anxiety, and even physical pain and poor posture.

5 Areas Where You Might Be Carrying Stress

Stress can get stuck in multiple places in our body, causing it to get congested and intensify. In these areas stress is literally contained within the body. We all have the ability to build awareness around how we react or respond to stress, and we can all take steps to eliminate stress that’s being stored in these “containers” within the body. The five areas are the jaw/neck/face, the shoulders/heart, the diaphragm/lungs, the stomach/gut, and the pelvic floor/hips.

Releasing Stress From The Body (Activity!)

Jaw, Neck, Face

Tension in jaw indicates blockage of emotional and verbal communication, fear of expression. Thoughts and emotions come together in the neck, stiffness is due to withheld statements. The face expresses the various “masks” of our personality, shows how we face the world. 

  1. Masseter Massage: Place two fingers on either side of your jaw. Clench your teeth to feel the masseter muscle contract. Once you have found the muscle, apply light pressure, open and close your mouth 10 times, slowly. Next, massage your masseter muscle by applying light pressure with your fingers and move them in small circles. Do this for one minute.
  2. Neck Stretching: Sit up tall (on sits bones), clasp hands behind your back. Lean head from right to left 10 times, slowly. Next, make circles with your head, tucking your chin to your chest, back over the right shoulder, stretching back, forward over the left shoulder and back down to the chest, 10 times each direction.

Shoulders, Heart

Shoulders are where we carry the weight of the world and fear of responsibility. Tension in shoulders and heart relates to forgiveness.

  1. Shoulder Shrugs: Take a deep inhale, shrugging your shoulders up to your ears, feeling what it feels like to hold stress and tension in your shoulders – exhale and let your shoulders fall down, relaxed. 10 times.
  2. Snow Angels on Foam Roller: Lay with foam roller aligned vertically down your spine, hands starting by your side, palms facing the ceiling, raise your hands slowly until they are extended above your head, trying to keep you finger tips in contact with the floor throughout (as if to make an angel in the snow). Perform for 2 minutes.

Diaphragm, Lungs

The diaphragm is your power and wisdom center. Tension here relates to power issues and emotional control issues. 

  1. Rib Breathing: Place your hands around your ribcage with your thumbs behind you. On the inhale let your hands feel your lungs and ribcage pushing out against them. On the exhale, lightly squeeze your ribs together with your hands as if to assist in squeezing the stress out of your body.
  2. Thoracic Spine Foam Rolling

Stomach, Gut

Holding tension here can be a result of being too instinctual and over analyzing things. Not allowing yourself to speak your truth, feel empowered.

  1. Belly Breathing: Practice breathing deeper than your lungs, filling your entire diaphragm and belly with air. Challenges yourself to inhale and exhale slowly, for 6 seconds each.

Hips, Pelvic Floor

The hips are the seat of Kundalini energy, the root of basic survival needs and action. Holding tension in the hips relates to old memories, anger, loss, resentment, the need to control the past or present.

  1. Sumo Squat: Hold the sumo squat/deep squat position with hands in prayer hands position, taking deep breaths, exhaling negative energy, allowing the hips to open and deepen the stretch. Hold for 20 seconds, repeat 10 times.

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I hope I have inspired you to deepen your mind-body connection and challenge you to move with purpose and intent in your next exercise session. If you are holding on to unnecessary stress, or have chronic body aches and pains, I believe the above mentioned activities are right for you. (Honestly, I believe it is right for everyone!) And always remember…

“When the mind and the body work as one, anything is possible.”