Fresh Pesto Sauce (dairy-free)

In our house, we love putting pesto sauce on roasted chicken and pasta for a great dinner or snack. Fresh pesto truly makes average things taste amazing. Traditional pesto sauces include a good handful of parmesan cheese. Although parmesan does truly make the most insanely delicious pesto, you can have a delicious pesto even without the parmesan. Here is what I came with, which Sarah enjoys on things like roasted chicken breast, sliced cucumber, and rice pasta.

This is so good when served fresh but I think it acquires an even better flavor after sitting in the fridge over a night or two. It keeps well in the fridge and it is handy for throwing together quick dinners. Try adding some walnuts or hazelnuts and experiment to make this even more delicious on your own.

Pine nuts are healthy and they contain heart healthy monounsaturated fat, are high in vitamin C, are great source of iron. Pine nuts may even suppress your appetite which we all need help with at times… Pine nuts contain Pinolenic acid which causes the triggering of hunger suppressants (cholecystokinin and glucagon-like peptide-1). These are just to name a few of the many healthy attributes of pine nuts.

 

Jake’s Approach:

Put all of the following ingredients into a blender or vitamix and blend until smooth and evenly colored. Now add it to your choice of meats, vegetables or pasta!

Bon appetit!

 

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 cup fresh basil (packed and most stems removed)

3/4 cup pine nuts

3 cloves garlic

1/4-1/2 tsp of salt (adjust as you like)

juice squeezed from 1/4 of a lemon

(Do not squeeze lemon directly over mixture… Accidental lemon seeds in the pesto can make it taste bitter)

*Want dairy? Add 1/2 cup parmesan

My Mom’s Lemon Herb Chicken

For me, one of my keys to feeling healthy and balanced is prep cooking. I make sure that I have great tasting protein, cooked and ready to eat in glass tupperware in my refrigerator at all times. I also have a container full of cooked rice and a few bags of greens. I love to keep a high quality salt and balsamic vinegar on hand to add to the greens as well.  With these few simple things I can throw together a meal in minutes. Here is one of my favorite, super easy, preparations of chicken. Let me know when you try it!
 

My Mom’s Lemon Herb Chicken

4 Chicken Breasts
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic minced
1 Tbsp oregano
1 Tbsp parsley
1 Tbsp basil
Preparation:
1. Take a fork and poke lots of holes in the chicken breasts to better soak up the marinade.
2. Combine the rest of the ingredients in a large glass bowl to create the marinade.
3. Marinate chicken breasts for 2 hours in refrigerator, turning the breasts over half way through.
4. BBQ for 6 minutes per side or until the juices run clear.
5. Boil the remaining marinade for 3 mins over stove top.
6. Pour boiled marinade over chicken breasts and serve, or store!
Enjoy!
-Sarah

Sarah’s Healthy Cocktail Recipe

Something I look forward to everyday: My health cocktail.

Each of us has a few key things that we do each day that help us to feel strong, and maintain balance during what can often feel like an imbalanced routine. For me, one of these things is having a simple way to ignite my system. I make a very easy-to-prepare health cocktail, one that combines ingredients to help detoxify tissues and invigorate blood flow. To me, it’s a break, it’s a treat, and it energizes me and simply makes me happy. It’s part of my daily ritual, a moment I take for myself to fill my cup, and it keeps me feeling strong for my day. 

It’s also incredibly simple:

1 tablespoon honey (for best results, add honey first with a little hot water and stir) 

Handful of ice 

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (I prefer Braggs brand) 

1/2 a lemon squeezed (I like Meyers lemons)

2 heathy dashes of cayenne pepper (omit if you have acid reflux/heartburn)

All of this can be varied to taste. 

For more information about the benefits of apple cider vinegar, click here.

Enjoy!
-Sarah