Food-Filled Fridays: Health and the Unhealthy


Happy Food-Filled Friday to all of you.  I sit here in my comfy slippers next to my heater, watching the snow fall outside. My dishes are done (That side-note is for you, Aaron), and a new-to-me recipe sits cooling on my counters.  Any guesses? :) (More to come…)

I have so much on my mind this Friday, as the Lord continues to direct my life in numerous ways that I never would have planned on my own but am loving.  For instance, last night I signed up to join the Chenango Fire Company.  I know a bunch of you are wondering how I’ll fit in the time to be a fireman, but let me explain. I’m not going to be fighting fires but doing scene-support, which means assisting the firemen by keeping them hydrated and supplied on scene, helping care for children on-scene, taking pictures, and organizing post-emergency call meals.  This is really exciting to be able to go on-scene and support my husband and brother-in-law as they volunteer and help save lives.

On to the food-filled topic of the day:

JUICING.

Thanks to Craigslist, I was able to procure a brand new juicer! I’m very excited, as this will enable me to get the nutrients of the fruits and veggies my body doesn’t seem to process with ulcerative colitis by juicing them! Plus, the benefits to Adam as well to have fresh juice with zero sugar and preservatives added is incredible!

I just did my first bit of juicing, combining some frozen pineapple, two carrots, a banana.

frozen pineapple, raw carrot, and a banana

The results: heaven in a glass.  What a wonderful, soft, fresh juice that gives me the nutrients of those same vegetables and fruits that I can’t otherwise enjoy (specifically, the pineapple and raw carrots). It’s super-easy too, and despite what people say in regards to a long, messy clean-up, clean up right away and it takes about 60 seconds flat!  Well-worth it!

Here’s a little research I’ve done on the benefits of juicing:

  • It creatively increases your intake of fruits and vegetables.
  • The body absorbs nutrients faster in liquid form.
  • It increases your metabolism
  • It offers a high concentration of anti-oxidants and therefore, boosts the immune system and fights disease
  • Juicing actually releases some of the nutrients caught up in the fiber, allowing your body to absorb more of it.
  • It helps detox and balance the acids in your body.
  • It helps fight aging.

Amazingly fresh and smooth!

Those are just a few of the wonderful benefits!  It’s well-worth any effort to juice, and I’m sure I’ll be doing it more and more. I can’t wait for Adam to try!

So, that’s the health-related discussion of the day!

As I mentioned before, just because I’m definitely becoming more and more health-conscious does not mean I’m keep Adam from what he loves most: sweets.

Today, I made…..drumroll…. for the very first time …. no-bake cookies. Okay, laugh all you want, but when I think of baking and cooking, I don’t think of making a cookie I don’t first put in the oven before eating.  That seems foreign to me.  However, yesterday,  a friend of mine Meg made these peanut butter no-bakes that changed my mind on the whole subject: I had to try them!  They have peanut-butter in them after all!

So, this morning I set about to make my first (and definitely not last) batch of no-bake cookies.  They were super-easy to make, and they taste amazingly. Of course, no offense to Meg, I didn’t follow her recipe directly, using honey and some Splenda to replace the 2 cups of granulated sugar the recipe called for.  Even then, I think I’d reduce the Splenda and still with about 3/4 c. honey instead.  The cookies are pretty sweet.

My new love in making food is versatility, and these cookies are just that. I could totally add other ingredients, swap out the peanut butter (who would want to do that?!), and even top them with an M&M as Meg suggested!  I love that about these cookies.  In fact, I think next time, I’ll try adding some banana or pumpkin.

Give them a try, and let me know what you think!

Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies

Makes approximately 2 dozen

1 cups Splenda and 1/2 c. honey (I think I’d cut out the Splenda next time)
1/2 cup butter

yum yum

1/2 cup milk
3 cups quick oats
5 tablespoons peanut butter
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Boil sugar, butter, and milk for one minute, stirring constantly. Add oats, peanut butter, and vanilla and mix quickly. Drop by teaspoonfuls on wax paper. Let stand until firm.

On a side note, I know I called this the “unhealthy” section of this post, but in actuality, check out the nutrition facts for a cookie.  Not too shabby.  Nutrition Facts

So, what about you? What have you made this Food-Filled Friday??

—-Don’t forget! I’m still accepting topic ideas in the Talk about It Tuesday new topic contest!!  The contest closes on Monday night, and the new topic discussion begins this Tuesday!  Get your votes in for your chance to win!

—-

Sources for information on juicing:
1. http://www.bestofjuicing.com/
2. http://www.living-foods.com/articles/benefits.html
3. http://www.energiseforlife.com/juicing.php
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7 Responses to Food-Filled Fridays: Health and the Unhealthy

  1. Grace says:

    I have a question, what is the difference between a juicer and a blender?

    • Ashley says:

      If I were to use a blender to cut up/liquify carrots, the result would be super-pulpy and thick like a shake. With a juicer, the machine actually shreds the fruit/veggie into as fine strips as orange juice pulp and extracts the juice from it, so the result is a smooth fruit/veggie juice like I could buy from a store.
      Does that make sense?

      • Grace says:

        yep! I actually kinda of like the consistency of a shake, but I’ve never tried anything from a juicer, so I’m not able to compare the two.

        I sure do like the idea of a 60 second clean up!

  2. Trenchmommy says:

    So, its Mom’s vitamix a blender or a juicer? And would you help me find a juicer to buy? I don’t do it because I don’t really know what to look for!

    • Ashley says:

      Hey! I’d love to help you find one!
      I don’t know what really makes Mom’s Vitamix so special. Adam’s not convinced it’s any better than a really great blender. The juicer is really good, and I’m looking forward to using it a lot this year!

  3. So, is there pulp left in the juicer that could be made into a smoothie?

    • Ashley says:

      Yes! It’s wonderful! I juiced carrots recently and had pulp left over that would have been perfect (if I’d been thinking…) to make a carrot cake with! It’s super-fine, so it wouldn’t be chunky at all! It’s about the consistency of the most-fine shredding option on your grater or possibly finer.
      Considering getting a juicer? My sister-in-law is getting one today!

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