31 October 2007

Pineapple Salsa


20 ounces pineapple chunks in juice
2 teaspoons oil
1 tablespoon cilantro
juice from 1/2 a lime
1/4 of a jalapeno, or to taste
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon sugar

Combine all the ingredients, except the salt and Splenda, in a blender or food processor. Pulse twice or until the salsa is chunky. Season to taste with salt and with sugar if the pineapple needs additional sweetness. Serve with chips.

24 October 2007

Food for Thought

Colourful condiments for nutrition

A new study has shown that we also eat with our eyes, by revealing that choosing colourful condiments actually enhance the nutritional value of routine food.

Some know, some don't know. Incorporating all the colors of the food groups ensure that we are getting what we need in the way of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, proteins, fiber, etc.

Taste the rainbow:

Natural plant pigments called lycopene or anthocyanins color red fruits and vegetables.

Lycopene in tomatoes, watermelon and pink grapefruit, for example, may help reduce risk of several types of cancer, especially prostate cancer. Lycopene in foods containing cooked tomatoes, such as spaghetti sauce, and a small amount of fat are absorbed better than lycopene from raw tomatoes.

Anthocyanins in strawberries, raspberries, red grapes and other fruits and vegetables act as powerful antioxidants that protect cells from damage. Antioxidants are linked with keeping our hearts healthy, too.

Examples of the red group:

• Red apples
• Beets
• Red cabbage
• Cherries
• Cranberries
• Pink grapefruit
• Red grapes
• Red peppers
• Pomegranates
• Red potatoes
• Radishes
• Raspberries
• Rhubarb
• Strawberries
• Tomatoes
• Watermelon

Natural plant pigments called carotenoids usually color orange/yellow fruits and vegetables.

Beta-carotene in sweet potatoes, pumpkins and carrots is converted to vitamin A, which helps maintain healthy mucous membranes and healthy eyes. Scientists have also reported that carotenoid-rich foods can help reduce risk of cancer, heart disease and can improve immune system function.

One study found that people who ate a diet high in carotenoid-rich vegetables were 43 percent less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration, an eye disorder common among the elderly, which can lead to blindness.

Carotenoids also may be good for your heart. One study found that men with high cholesterol who ate plenty of vegetables high in carotenoids had a 36 percent lower chance of heart attack and death than their counterparts who shunned vegetables.
Citrus fruits like oranges are not a good source of vitamin A. They are an excellent source of vitamin C and folate, a B vitamin that helps reduce risk of birth defects and helps keep our hearts healthy.

Examples of the orange/yellow group include:

• Yellow apples
• Apricots
• Butternut squash
• Cantaloupe
• Carrots
• Grapefruit
• Lemons
• Mangoes
• Nectarines
• Oranges
• Papayas
• Peaches
• Pears
• Yellow peppers
• Persimmons
• Pineapple
• Pumpkin
• Rutabagas
• Yellow summer or winter squash
• Sweet corn
• Sweet potatoes
• Tangerines
• Yellow tomatoes
• Yellow watermelon

Green fruits and vegetables are colored by natural plant pigment called chlorophyll.

Some members of the green group, including spinach and other dark leafy greens, green peppers, peas, cucumber and celery, contain lutein. Lutein works with another chemical, zeaxanthin, found in corn, red peppers, oranges, grapes, and egg yolks to help keep eyes healthy. Together, these chemicals may help reduce risk of cataracts and age-related macular degeneration, which can lead to blindness if untreated.

The indoles in broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and other cruciferous vegetables may help protect against some types of cancer. Leafy greens like spinach and broccoli are also excellent sources of folate, a B vitamin that helps reduce risk of birth defects and helps keep our hearts healthy.

Examples of the green group include:

• Green apples
• Artichokes
• Asparagus
• Avocados
• Green beans
• Broccoli
• Brussels sprouts
• Green cabbage
• Cucumbers
• Green grapes
• Honeydew melon
• Kiwi
• Lettuce
• Limes
• Green onions
• Peas
• Green pepper
• Spinach
• Zucchini

Natural plant pigments called anthocyanins color blue/purple fruits and vegetables. Anthocyanins in blueberries, grapes, and raisins act as powerful antioxidants that protect cells from damage. They may help reduce risk of cancer, stroke, and heart disease. Other studies have shown that eating more blueberries is linked with improved memory function and healthy aging.

Examples of the blue/purple group:

• Blackberries
• Blueberries
• Eggplant
• Figs
• Plums
• Prunes
• Purple grapes
• Raisins

Pigments called anthoxanthins color white fruits and vegetables. They may contain health-promoting chemicals such as allicin, which may help lower cholesterol and blood pressure and may help reduce risk of stomach cancer and heart disease. Some members of the white group, like bananas and potatoes, are good sources of the mineral potassium, too.

Examples of the white group include:

• Bananas
• Cauliflower
• Garlic
• Ginger
• Jicama
• Mushrooms
• Onions
• Parsnips
• Potatoes
• Turnips

What the hell is wrong with people

Flamingos Decapitated in Frankfurt Zoo

A grisly murder case has shocked staff at Frankfurt Zoo. Keepers found the bodies of four murdered flamingos in their pen on Tuesday morning. Three of the birds were decapitated while a fourth was strangled to death, police said Tuesday. The four birds were all over 30 years old.

What in the hell is getting into people. What could these birds have possibly done to anyone. How sick an individual must you be to commit such an absolutely senseless act of violence such as this. Whomever did this is in some serious need of psychiatric intervention. Humans can be such disgusting, vile creatures at times.

07 October 2007

Simple Paella

3 ounces(85 grams) Olive Oil
1 Chicken cut into 8 pieces
12 ounces(340 grams) Pork cut into 1" (2.54cm) cubes
Flour as needed
8 ounces(227 grams) Shrimp peeled and deveined
6 ounces(170 grams) Onion diced
2 cloves Garlic chopped
2 cups(454 grams) Arborio Rice
5 cups(1134 grams) Chicken Stock prepared
1 pinch Saffron
4 ounces(113 grams) Red Bell Pepper 1" (2.54 cm) diced
4 ounces(113 grams) Green Peas

1. Heat a large sauté pan on a moderate flame; add the olive oil and heat.

2. Season the chicken pieces, dip in flour, shake off the excess and sauté until golden brown forapproximately 10 minutes, remove and set aside.

3. Season the pork cubes, dip in flour, shake off the excess and sauté until golden brown forapproximately 5 minutes, remove and set aside.

4. Sauté the shrimps quickly and set aside.

5. Still in the same pan and fat (if you did not burn it), add the onion, garlic and sweat them.

6. Add the rice and stir to coat the rice with fat, then add the chicken stock, saffron and season with salt and pepper to taste.

7. Bring to a simmer and stir well, then add the chicken, pork, shrimp, red peppers and green peasrandomly over the rice.

8. Place uncovered into a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) for about 5 minutes.

9. Serve immediately when done.

06 October 2007

Looky, looky, two in one day

Taking Life Easy in Urban Italy

This area is so beautiful and historical, it's no wonder that they wish to live this way. Central Italy, anywhere in Umbria to get closer, and to be exact, more like Perugia, Assisi, Spoletto, Deruta, or Bettona would be heaven to reside in.

With breathtaking views like this:



Umbria (no specific city though)

and Assisi

I could not imagine polluting such beauty with cars, chain restaurants, or grocery stores. Locally owned, locally produced, locally harvested - the only way to go.
I will live there some day.


I don't know. I keep thinking that I'm gonna be able to get back here at least every other day and then some crazy ass thing happens.

School started back up this past Monday. This week is complete which means it is 9 weeks and counting till graduation.

I really detest online classes. I'm going to a private uni, so you can imagine the cost. I'm taking an online accounting class. I didn't want to mind you, but in the past 18 months, the class has not been offered on ground. If I wanna graduate, I had to take the online version. So, I'm paying a fairly large sum of money to teach myself. I could have gone out and bought a damned Intro to Accounting book and taught myself this shit for a lot less money. Now, it is called Intro to Accounting, but should be called Intro to Financial Math. I've already had a financial math class and this class is more intro than that class was. WTF. I so wish these people would pull their heads out of their respective asses and get this program together. Independent study classes, online classes. The student is teaching themselves. Should that not warrant a reduced price? But noooooooooo, instead, these types of classes cost $100 more each. Another WTF.

It matters not now. I'm too close. I'm tired of school. I'm tired of homework. It's been nice pretending to be 18-22 again, but I think I'm ready to be the 40 something I am. KWIM?

Sure, it's kept me feeling younger. I mean, how can you NOT feel younger when surrounded by youth, but at the same time, it's had me scratching my head. I know, not all 20 somethings are complete morons or airheads. I'm friends with many 20 somethings that have a whole lot on the ball and going for them, but for that handful of 'like-yaknow-OMG', well, it just makes my skin crawl and my nerves shot. Especially that first day back from a break (now, our breaks are only a week long since we do quarters, not semesters) and a couple of immature girls see each other for the first time in a whole week and you get the squeals of excitement and the shrill 'OMG I've missed you, I haven't seen you in so long, catch me up' Good grief. Everytime I see your dumb ass you have a cell phone plastered to the side of your head. Can you not call one another during that long drawn out week off so that the rest of the world does not have to listen to the squeals. Nails-chalkboard?

Ok, so who knew I was going to end up ranting. I didn't till I started typing. Guess I was more typeative than I thought