Tag: Gadgets

Simple Beauty-Boosting Salad with Pesto Dressing

One of my favorite parts of my job is spending time with employees and showing them how delicious and doable it is to eat well. I love the look of surprise on their faces and the comments they make when they try something they assumed wouldn’t taste good.

(Like this chocolate avocado mousse!)

For a recent cooking demonstration with a client in DC, we focused on beauty-boosting foods – food packed with colors, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other anti-aging nutrients and benefits.

We started with this Tropical Breeze Smoothie and then made the salad below for our main course, followed by my 5-minute chocolate avocado mousse topped with blackberries for dessert. Everyone had a great time and raved about the recipes.

To be totally honest, I came up with this salad the day before the class when I was in DC and eating my lunch from Chop’t, a salad place at the train station. I was admiring their seasonal Greenmarket Grain Bowl made with radishes, cucumbers, a mix of lettuces and a lemon basil vinaigrette.

Since the focus of the demo I was teaching the next day was about anti-aging, beauty-boosting foods, I knew that was the inspiration I needed to come up with this recipe. The good news is that you don’t HAVE to use these exact ingredients – just use a variety of vegetables that are in season and serve them with a yummy dressing, like the pesto one we made.

This particular recipe would be the perfect pairing for an ionic foot detox. Want to learn more about the potential health-boosting benefits of this unique detox treatment? Take a look at this guide to foods to help detox with ion cleanse. As with any health-related matter, always do your research before embarking on any detox plan.

Here are the health benefits of some of the ingredients we used according to nutritionist, Kimberly Snyder, in her book, The Beauty Detox Foods.


Cucumbers: This is one of the top beauty-boosting foods we can eat. Cukes are packed with enzyme-charged water, B-vitamins and electrolytes to help us flush out the kidneys, reduce bloating and build radiant skin from within.

Radishes: Help cut and dissolve mucus in the digestive tract, so nutrients can flow freely throughout the body. They are in the mustard family and act as cleansers and detoxifiers in our body.

Scallions: Onions contain compounds that stimulate the production of the most important antioxidants the liver uses for detoxification (glutathione). They also contain quercetin, an antioxidant that counters the effects of premature aging.

Zucchini: Rich in antioxidants and other anti-inflammatory compound, vitamins and minerals, this summer squash is not only good for our bodies but it’s also fun to prepare when you use a spiralizer.

To make things a little more exciting than usual, we spiralized the zucchini and diced and sliced everything else. (This is the spiralizer I have). We topped it off with a pesto sauce that I usually serve with pasta or as a topping for cucumber slices as an appetizer. You can thin it out a bit by adding a little more oil or water and use it as a dressing. We just took it straight from the food processor and mixed it in.

The finishing touch was a sprinkling of Tomato Basil Chickpeatos (my FAVE roasted chickpeas). The bag was gone in a matter of minutes. I use them instead of croutons, and the rest of the crew is on board with that idea now, too, which is awesome to see!



1/2 pound mixed greens
2 zucchini, spiralized (or cut into thin strips)
1 bunch scallions, chopped
2 cucumbers, chopped
1 bunch radishes, thinly sliced
1 package of sprouted beans (we used lentil sprouts from MOMs)
1 cup Tomato Basil Chickpeatos
1/2 cup basil walnut pesto


  1. Mix all salad ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Add dressing and toss to combine.
  3. Top with Chickpeatos and enjoy!

Zucchini Pasta with Cauli-fredo Sauce!


The past two weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind.

I haven’t felt quite like myself because I’ve been stretching myself too thin.

All of the projects I’ve been working on have been amazing opportunities, but when I said, “yes” to them separately about 2-3 months ago, I didn’t realize they would ALL end up happening within the same week in November.

I have SO much I want to write about and a ton of new recipes to share, but a few wise friends and family members have suggested that I s-l-o-w d-o-w-n a bit and take a moment to breathe amidst this craziness.

That’s why you may notice fewer blog posts until things calm down and my schedule gets back to normal in the next 2 weeks or so.

One of the things I’m working on is a series of posts about “My Favorite Things,” where I’ll share my favorite gadgets, stocking stuffers and cookbooks, just in time for holiday shopping 🙂

I’m also working with a web designer to do some pretty cool things to this blog over the next few months, and I’m really excited to see what happens with that!

I can’t write this post without mentioning that my husband has been nothing short of a saint over the past few weeks in particular, and I’m so incredibly grateful for his support, encouragement and patience. I am very, very blessed.


Although I’ve felt stretched and stressed lately, I’ve gotten to do some really fun and exciting things…many of which were milestones that I couldn’t have imagined happening a year ago!

  • I trained the staff of a local restaurant to understand the differences among some current dietary trends and types (like paleo, vegetarian, gluten-free, vegan)
  • I facilitated a documentary movie night at my church where a group of about 20 of us watched Food, Inc. and enjoyed some healthy snacks, including my favorite caramel apple dip and this kickin’ buffalo hummus
  • I taught my FIRST full cooking class in my friend’s kitchen for a party at her house. I showed the group how to make my favorite kale salad, caulifredo zucchini noodles (recipe below!) and hazelnut truffles.


The process of planning out and prepping for a cooking demo is intense, and I have a new appreciation for anyone who has their own cooking show and what goes into making that happen.

Phew! It’s definitely a lot of work…but I LOVED having the opportunity to teach the group through hands on cooking.

The most rewarding part of the whole experience was hearing people say things like, “Oh my gosh, this is amazing!” and “I’m shocked by how good that tastes.” 

It’s so fun to see people get excited about eating nourishing food!

We got to play with my NEW favorite kitchen toy (a Paderno Spiralizer) during the demo as we made our own zucchini noodles in seconds. I’ve included a video below for how to use it.

Zucchini noodles are a great alternative to pasta because they don’t spike our blood sugar or contain gluten like most pasta. You’ll be AMAZED at how similar the texture is to pasta…you can still twirl it on your fork, too! The spiralizer is something you’ll want to add to your wish list.

We topped the zucchini noodles with this creamy cauliflower alfredo sauce. It’s a variation of a recipe I shared earlier this year, but I made some tweaks to improve it! I think you’ll love it.





  • 4 zucchini, spiralized using this awesome gadget! (You could also sub in your favorite gluten-free pasta of choice – we like the Tinkyada brown rice pasta)
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil

Caulifredo Sauce

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil, ghee/clarified butter or grass-fed butter
  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into florets (here’s how to break apart a head of cauliflower in seconds!)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 generous pinch of pepper, to taste
  • juice from 1/2 lemon (about 1.5 tablespoons)


  1. Sauté the minced garlic in coconut oil or butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Allow to cook for a few minutes, until the garlic is tender and fragrant but not browned.
  2. Add the 1 cup of water to the saucepan, along with the cauliflower florets, and bring the water to a boil. (The water will not cover the cauliflower, but that’s okay.) Once the water is boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and cover the pot for 12-15 minutes or until the cauliflower is fork-tender and very soft.
  3. Transfer the entire contents of the saucepan into a blender or food processor, and season with salt and pepper. Add in lemon juice and onion powder. Process until very smooth and creamy, with a texture similar to traditional cream sauce. (Always be careful when blending hot liquids– the steam pressure can blow the lid off your blender!).
  4. Season with additional salt and pepper, if desired, and serve hot. If it seems thick, add more water. If it seems dry, add a liberal drizzle of olive oil.
  5. Place spiralized zucchini in a medium-sized frying pan greased with coconut oil, and stir for 3-4 minutes or until zucchini takes on a cooked pasta texture, sort of wilted and soft. Be careful not to overcook.
  6. Transfer zucchini noodles (AKA “zoodles”) to a plate or bowl and pour sauce on top. Sprinkle this 3-ingredient paleo parmesan cheeze on top and start eating!

Make Your Own Zucchini Pasta…In 5 Minutes or Less!

Growing up, I LOVED pasta, especially angel hair pasta. I ate it multiple times a week with butter, garlic powder and heaps of parmesan cheese. It was my go to meal, even in college.

Since removing gluten from my diet a few years ago, I’ve tried alternatives like lentil and brown rice pasta (that are delish!), but sometimes I want something even lighter.

If you’re looking for some creative alternatives to pasta that are packed with nutrients, won’t weight you down and are perfect for warmer weather, you have to try…zucchini noodles.

AKA Zoodles!



Meet, the spiralizer. This gadget will open a whole new world of food possibilities for you. You can use it with zucchini, carrots, beets, cabbage, and a range of other fruits and veggies. Better yet, if you have kids and you’re trying to introduce them to certain veggies, let them use this gadget and I bet they will be a little more tempted to try what they spiralize!

I’ve included a video below for how to use it.

Zucchini noodles are a great alternative to pasta because they don’t spike our blood sugar or contain gluten like most pasta. You’ll be AMAZED at how similar the texture is to pasta…you can still twirl it on your fork, too!

Zucchini Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper Pesto



  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 roasted red pepper
  • 1/3 cup walnuts
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • dash of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • paleo parmesan cheeze


  1. Here’s the fun part…spiralize the zucchini! Watch the video below to learn how. (Then, cut the the strands in chunks with scissors, otherwise you will end up with one very long strand of pasta!)
  2. To make the pesto, put the red pepper, walnuts, garlic, and sea salt in a food processor (we used a mini one), and pulse until blended but still a bit chunky.
  3. Top the zucchini pasta with one or two spoonfuls of pesto and some paleo parmesan cheeze and enjoy!

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