Cran-Apple Cider

As I mentioned the other day, I came down with a nasty cold and a slight fever this week.  Now that I’m feeling better, I wanted to share with you all one strategy I have for those days you’re feeling under the weather: cran-apple cider.

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This started off very simple, and the recipe has developed since then to form a (quite spectacular) rejuvenating drink for when you have a cold.  So, here is the recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cran-apple juice
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 1 chunk of fresh ginger
  • A tad bit of water
  • Tea bag of your choice

Directions

  1. In a medium sized saucepan, heat up the cran-apple juice.  Add the cinnamon, the teabag, and the ginger and boil for 15 minutes.
  2. Let cool and remove ginger and cinnamon.  Add a bit of water (optional- however much you need to weaken it to drinkability).
  3. Voilà! Serve, enjoy, and feel better.

One note about the tea: the type really depends on your needs.  I like to use green tea in the morning for a healthy burst of energy, and at night, I go with an herbal “sleepy-time” tea.  Not a tea person?  You can barely taste it, but you can omit the tea if you really want to.

Basically everything in this is designed to make you feel better: cranberry juice is good, although the reason escapes me at the moment; apple juice is helpful for colds; cinnamon will reduce any inflammation in your throat for a soothing effect; the ginger kills germs in your throat (you may feel it burn a bit- normal!); the tea can give you energy or calm you down; and the heat, of course, soothes your throat.

Remember this next time you aren’t feeling well, and god luck!  What do you think; do you have any home-remedies?

Easy Spring Rolls

ImageBefore I begin: I understand that this is not exactly an attractive picture.  Sorry, guys.  I can assure you that it tasted much better than it looks.  I promise.  Anyway, here’s the recipe- hope you like it.

4 sheets rice paper
Water sufficient to dampen the rice paper
2-3 torn lettuce leaves
Small bunch of Thai basil
1 cup bean sprouts
Bunch of cilantro
1 cucumber, sliced into 8 2 x 1/2-inch pieces
2 spring onions, sliced into 8 2-inch pieces
1 carrot, sliced into 8 2-inch strips
1 cup boiled rice noodles
Vietnamese Spicy Red Sauce

• Dampen the rice paper in the water, then pat dry with a kitchen towel.
• Place small amounts of the torn lettuce, basil, sprouts, and cilantro approximately 1 inch from the end of a sheet of rice paper. Add 2 pieces of the cucumber, 2 pieces of the spring onion, 2 carrot slices, and a small amount of the rice noodles. Fold the end and sides of the paper over the filling and roll tightly into a cylinder shape.
• Repeat with the remaining ingredients.
• Slice each roll into 2 to 3 pieces and serve with the Vietnamese Spicy Red Sauce.

You can also try frying them in a few tablespoons of vegetable oil.  They’re relatively easy, require little experience, they’re healthy, and they taste great!

P.S. Happy Valentines Day to you all!

Fun With Super Bowl Snacks

Today I’ll be sharing my plans for the Super Bowl with you all.  First: dessert.  Obviously, that’s the priority here :)

We’re having oreo truffles, which sounds much more complicated than it is.  You’ll need: 16 oz. cream cheese, 72 oreos, and 4 or 5 bars of dark chocolate.  Crush the oreos and put them in the food processor with the cream cheese until it is smooth and dough-like.  Form them into balls and let it sit overnight.  The next day, melt the dark chocolate, and dip the oreo balls in.  Put them in the fridge so they can cool, et voila!  Oreo truffles.

Let me tell you, they are so good.  I really can’t stress this enough.  They’re amazing.

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Honestly, they don’t look as good as they taste, but some sprinkles could easily fix that, haha.

Our second plan is… sushi!  We’re going to have one regular platter (for my family) and one vegetarian platter (for me and our vegetarian friends).  I’m excited; sushi is the best.  Thing.  Ever.  (Besides the oreo truffles.)

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This picture is of the sushi platter (from New Year’s Eve), but I have no idea what the vegetarian one will look like.

Well, I hope you enjoy your Super Bowl as much as I will!  xoxo