. . . fields of indulgence . . .

A blog about healthy living and the simple induglences in life!

Spicy Cilantro Lime Salad Dressing (No Vinegar) April 4, 2011

Filed under: Recipes — fieldsofindulgence @ 8:23 pm

Most of you know that I was recently diagnosed with several food allergies, one of which is causing some itchy rashes on my legs and arms. To really know which food is the issue, I have to quit all foods on the list for 3 months, and then re-introduce one by one to see how my body is adjusting.


One of those ‘foods’ is brewer’s yeast, which means no beer or wine and subsequently no vinegar! We eat a salad for lunch every single day of the week, so this was devastating news. It was very informative to watch my reactions to these new “restrictions.” The best part about restraints is the freedoms that arise within them!


So, I needed a salad dressing that tastes good without vinegar (very hard!). This creation, after some tweaks, is my new favorite dressing and I do not miss vinegar :). I will continue to play with variations with different herbs and will post soon.


Spicy Cilantro Lime Salad Dressing
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger root
1/4 cup lime juice
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
a pinch of chipotle powder/cayenne pepper (optional)


I usually coarse chop all non-liquid ingredients first. I used a food processor to continue chopping adding the liquids one by one. If you don’t have a food processor, just shaking a bottle or a jar should be sufficient. Happy salad eating!

 

Liquid Peanut Butter and Jelly February 17, 2011

Filed under: Recipes — fieldsofindulgence @ 9:12 am

Are you one of those people that simply doesn’t have time for breakfast? Lately, with our busy lives, and the need to make up extra work hours that are spent in the yoga studio, most of my breakfasts are to go!


The easiest and fastest breakfasts we make are smoothies! I love them and they are never the same with the switch of a couple of ingredients. They are packed with nutrients, antioxidants, and even fiber. Most of these ingredients are optional, so you can start with a simple version and add to it as you continue to experiment with it.


Liquid Peanut Butter and Jelly
2 cups almond/soy milk (unsweetened)
2 tablespoons ground flax meal
1 cup of frozen berries
1 frozen banana (optional)
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1 tablespoon green Phytofoods (optional)
1 tablespoon protein powder (optional)


This makes about two 16 oz cups; I pour mine into a plastic Fun Drink glass from our cruise and just drink it on the way to work!


You can’t tell that the flax meal or phytofoods are in there at all, and this way you can get some nice fiber and a concentrated dose of nutrients to start your morning! 🙂 You can switch the kinds of berries you use to get a different flavor! You can also use almond butter, hazelnut butter or any other nut butter to change the flavor up.

 

Tadasana Asian Salad Dressing Recipe January 31, 2011

Filed under: Recipes — fieldsofindulgence @ 7:12 pm

I love making my own salad dressings! Salad dressings in the store are usually loaded with sugar and preservatives, which are both things I try to avoid. Plus, having a freshly made salad dressing on a fresh salad is just indulgent! 🙂


My latest creation was inspired by the Asian flavors I love like ginger, rice vinegar, soy souce. And as the yoga teacher training is progressing, yoga poses and lingo has become an everyday language in the Fields household. This is where the name of the dressing comes from. For those of you who do not practice yoga, tadasana is one of the most grounding and basic yet really involved poses. It is translated as mountain pose and is where you stand straight up and feel grounded through the earth (see below for more details on the pose).


Tadasana Asian Salad Dressing Recipe
2 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 – 3 cloves of garlic (you can adjust this based on your love for garlic)
1 tablespoon soy sauce or Bragg’s Amino Acids
2 – 3 tablespoons rice vinegar (you can also adjust this based on your love for vinegar)
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (see note below on toasting these)
1/4 cup olive oil


I found that salad dressings mix best in a food processor, but you can also just shake it up in a bottle. A nice tip that I have learned a long the way is to prep your ginger when you buy it, so you always have it on hand. Just peel it and stick it in the freezer – you will have fresh ginger available anytime. It is great for digestion!


Toasted Sesame Seeds and Tadasana

The easiest and most effective way is to toast the sesame seeds in a pan at low to medium heat forabout 4 – 5 minutes. Sesame seeds are very gentle, so you have to continually keep stirring them so they do not burn. This is where tadasana comes in :), and a great opportunity to spend a few minutes slowing your mind down.


Focus on the feeling of your feet down on the earth, particularly the 4 ball points of the botton of your foot. Pull all toes up to engage your legs and work on balance. Think about your tailbone and make sure that it is not too tucked or too flared and suck in your belly and hold it tight (this will help with your beach belly!). Lift your shoulders up to your ears and roll them back to help with your posture. Now, enjoy tadasana as you stir the sesame seeds for the next 5 minutes!

 

Natural Hair Conditioning January 19, 2011

Filed under: Hair and Scalp Care — fieldsofindulgence @ 11:41 pm
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I have found that as I get older, my hair and skin are changing surely due to the hormonal changes in my body. I spent a long time worrying about it and being disappointed with these changes, but that didn’t get me anywhere! So, I am on a quest to find ways to nourish these changes and embrace them.


My new favorite indulgence is scalp massage with warm oil! This is spa treatment at home with the most simple ingredients that you can find right in your grocery store. Depending on hair type, you will use a different kind of oil, and you can also infuse these with some essential oils that will accentuate the experience.


I used about 2 Tablespoons of coconut oil with a dash of rosemary essential oil. The oil should be warmed up (over a hot water bath) just enough but not too much as the scalp is very sensitive to temperature changes. Then, you spend a good 10 minutes rubbing the oil in the scalp and through the strands of the hair. It is most beneficial to stay in this for about 30 min to an hour, so that the hair and scalp have a chance to absorb this delightful creation.


Massaging the scalp brings more circulation to it, which is thought to invigorate hair growth. The oils provide essential nutrients to the scalp and hair that are usually stripped away with the harsh chemicals used for hair care these days. Another benefit is that the oils lubricate the scalp preventing flakes and dry scalp naturally.


I have to say that my hair feels wonderful after this treatment, and I really felt like I was in a spa :)! How indulgent!


Here are some tips on oils that can be used based on hair type:
Base Oils:
Coconut or Sesame – this is a cooling oil that is good for thinning or prematurely graying hair.
Olive – good for thick and oily hair due to its purifying properties and ability to keep pores open.
Sesame or Almond – these oils are good for thin, dry, and frizzy hair.


You can also play with combining any of these. I love the smell of coconut oil and my hair is actually a combination of the above – it is more on the oily side but also pretty thin. Coconut oil is known to have thickening properties for the hair as well.


Essential Oils:
Rosemary – itchy scalp, dandruff and dry hair
Jojoba – very nourishing and very beneficial to brittly hair
Basil – stimulates circulation and good for growh
Peppermint – also stimulating…I have had several hair dressers use this on me and always feels good. It maybe a little tingly.
Lavender – balancing and all-around great herb for hair and skin
You can also add a natural scent to your hair by adding a couple of drops of essential oil to your hair brush and brush your hair well.