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Comfort Food with a Twist: Shepherd’s Pie Caribbean

By Marie Oser, Managing Editor
November 11, 2010
File under: Healthy Eating, Vegan

 Shepherds Pie Caribbean
Photo: Juan Carlo

Comfort foods are typically homestyle meals with cultural or nostalgic significance that can actually perk up your mood. The aroma of a particular dish can transport us back to a time when life seemed less complicated and a hearty family meal was a frequent source of comfort. Comfort foods are most often simple or homey meals that become family favorites and are the hallmark of home cooking.

Shepherd’s Pie is a family style dish that came about as an economical way to make use of leftovers. The traditional English or Irish meat pie is usually made with ground or diced mutton with a few vegetables and rich gravy, topped with mashed potatoes and baked until the potato crust browns. Shepherd’s Pie Caribbean is a delightful fusion of International homestyle classics made with heart-healthy alternatives.

In Shepherd’s Pie Caribbean, our filling has a Latin accent based on the popular Caribbean dish, Picadillo (pick-a-de-o) A favorite in many Spanish speaking countries, Picadillo is usually made with ground beef, pork, or veal with tomatoes and spices that reflect the region. In Cuba it is served with rice and beans and in Mexico Picadillo is used as a stuffing in various dishes. …read more of Comfort Food with a Twist: Shepherd’s Pie Caribbean here

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Luscious Chocolate Pudding: Dairy-Free and Sugar-Free!

By Marie Oser, Managing Editor
October 25, 2010
File under: Dairy Free, Healthy Eating, Natural Alternatives, Vegan

chocolate pudding

Photo: Joseph A. Garcia

Creamy pudding is an easy make-ahead dessert and a favorite among comfort foods, however traditional pudding typically contains lots of calories and fat.

Milk, cream and eggs are common ingredients in the making of rich puddings, custards and cream pie fillings and it is these dairy products that contribute excessive fat, saturated fat, calories and cholesterol.

Can rich desserts like these be made light and healthy? The proof is in this delectable pudding. …read more of Luscious Chocolate Pudding: Dairy-Free and Sugar-Free! here

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Great Pumpkin Soup

By Marie Oser, Managing Editor
October 17, 2010
File under: Dairy Free, Entertaining, Healthy Eating, Vegan

pumpkin soup resized
Photo: Joseph A. Garcia

Great Pumpkin Soup is a colorful and rich-tasting soup that is as filling as it is flavorful. A perfect addition to a Halloween party buffet, this lively soup has a majestic pumpkin hue and is hearty enough to serve as an entrée with a salad and crusty baguette.

This easy recipe uses convenient canned pumpkin puree and the grated fresh gingerroot and Mexican stewed tomatoes add an interesting depth of flavor. This is a velvet-textured soup that has such a rich-tasting mouth feel that you may find it hard to believe that it contains no cream or dairy of any kind. Buttery Yukon Gold potatoes are pureed with colorful vegetables to help create a hearty soup with a character somewhat like bisque.

I like to finish my soups with an enriching miso paste, choosing light and flavorful varieties like Mellow White or Mellow Barley. This adds flavor and character to the soup as well as valuable health supporting enzymes thought to be an aid to digestion. …read more of Great Pumpkin Soup here

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Heart Healthy Zesty Fajitas

By Marie Oser, Managing Editor
October 11, 2010
File under: Healthy Eating, Meal Planning, Vegan

Photo Credit: Juan Carlo

Southwest Cookery is a zesty blend of Native American, Mexican and Spanish culinary styles with complex flavors that have been evolving for centuries. Often referred to as “Tex Mex” this home-style cuisine is evolving still to accommodate a more health conscious eater.

Fajitas originated on the Texas trails as a cowboy snack of grilled meat and vegetables wrapped in a flour tortilla.

Fajitas are a popular innovation for what is essentially a “make it yourself burrito” and our Fajitas have been enlightened for the health conscious cook.

These Zesty Fajitas are made hearty and healthy with chunks of seitan and potatoes Portobello mushrooms and fresh vegetables. …read more of Heart Healthy Zesty Fajitas here

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5 Strategies to Combat Snack Attacks

By Marie Oser, Managing Editor
September 25, 2010
File under: Healthy Eating, Vegan, Weight Control


Living a healthy lifestyle is not an accident.  There are strategies, alternatives and options that can help you to regain control of your life.  The simple, concise and compelling reality is that you are what you eat and that losing weight only happens when you burn more calories than you consume.

So, if it is all that simple, why are so many of us struggling with maintaining a healthy weight? A combination of factors, not the least of which is what we choose to eat, will often make it more difficult to achieve results. And when we don’t see the desired result soon enough, we tend to lose interest and often give up.

When a “snack attack” strikes, we are likely to reach for whatever is close at hand, so it is a good idea to stock up on convenient items that are satisfying without lots of calories and fat. …read more of 5 Strategies to Combat Snack Attacks here

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An alternative approach to health, wellness and disease prevention. Marie Oser and her team of bloggers bring you creative natural solutions to issues affecting our health and wellbeing.

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