Monday, March 27, 2006

Spinach 101 or more about spinach then you would ever want to know

Spinach 101

We use the energy it makes for electricity . It sounds bizarre, but it's true: researchers are using phytonutrients found in spinach plants to create fascinating new "green" solar panels that covert sunlight into electricity. The idea stems from the realization that spinach plants turn sunlight into energy. That would be the process of photosynthsis.
There is a Sustainable House of Spinach- This incredible single family dwelling runs on a photosynthetic and phototroic skin made of spinach protein that produces so much energy it shares with its neighbors!!

We use it to cure blindness. A truly extraordinary cure for some forms of blindness is being proposed. The idea is to add light-absorbing pigments from spinach to nerve cells in the retina, to make the nerve cells fire when struck by light

We are speculating as to its use to power a computer. We have crossed the first hurdle of successfully integrating a photosynthetic protein molecular complex found in spinach with a solid-state electronic device,


Why Eat It
It is exceptionally rich in carotenoids, including beta-carotene and lutein, and also contains quercetin, a phytochemical with antioxidant properties. Spinach is rich in vitamins and minerals, particularly folate (folic acid), vitamin K, magnesium, and manganese; it also contains more protein than most vegetables.
Raw spinach is a healthy addition to salads, but to get the full benefit from this leafy green, eat it cooked at least some of the time. Cooking makes the antioxidant carotenoids responsible for much of spinach's nutritional potency easier for the body to absorb.

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Spinach and Apple Salad with Warm Cider Dressing

Serves 4

½ pound baby spinach, washed and spun dry2 of your favorite apples, for this I like the Fuji variety. Peeled, cored and sliced into thin wedges6 ounces fresh goat cheese½ cup pecan halves toasted½ cup dried cranberries
Cider Dressing1 tablespoon olive oil¼ cup minced shallots1 apple, peeled, cored and chopped½ cup fresh apple juice 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar1 cup olive oilsalt and pepper to taste
1. To make the dressing: In a non-reactive sauce pan on medium cook the shallots and apples with the tablespoon of oil, stirring constantly until lightly caramelized. 2. Add the juice and reduce to almost dry. 3. Place mixture in a blender, add vinegar and oil and puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 4. Return to pan and keep just warm. Or, you can re-heat the next day if you want to make this ahead.5. To assemble the salad: In a large mixing bowl place the spinach, apples, pecans, cranberries and toss with just enough of the warm dressing to coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 6. Distribute among 4 plates garnish with pieces of goat cheese.

Friday, March 24, 2006

California Wheat Free Pancakes


California Wheat Free Pancakes

3 cups of brown rice flour (buying it would be better then grinding it yourself) (you can adjust the quanity of ingredients if just for yourself)
3 eggs
1 tea. baking soda
2 tea. baking powder
2 tablespoons honey + or -
2 tea. vanilla + or -
2 tablespoons olive oil
Soy milk to moisten- here ,start with a little to check the consistancy- with the first batch I made it was quite thin, but it still cooked well.
you can add ground nuts if you wish

Sunday, March 19, 2006

A Place to find food websites that begin with A

Home-grown apple from my own backyard
Sunnyvale, California

American Culinary Federation New Orleans www.ACFNO.org
Arm and Hammer Baking Soda www.armhammer.com

Monday, March 13, 2006

Lemon-Ginger Buttermilk Scones

Lemon -Ginger Buttermilk Scones
7 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/3 cup sugar
2 teas. baking soda
5 teas. baking powder
1 cup cyrstalized ginger, diced
The zest of 2 lemons (you can never put too much of this in!)
2 2/3 cup buttermilk
1 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
Place first 6 ingredients in mixing bowl. Add buttermilk and butter. Mix until just moist.
Scoop out with large ice cream scoop.
Bake on greased baking sheet at 400 degres for 20 minutes
Cool on wire raks.
Makes 15 large scones

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Apricot Nut Bread


Apricot Nut Bread

1 cup snipped Olson’s dried apricots (http://www.cjolsoncherries.com/)
1 cup sugar
2 Tab. Butter
1 egg
3/4cup orange juice + 1/8 cup (I like Odwalla or use a concentrate with less water then called for)
1 teas. vanilla
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teas baking powder
¼ teas soda
1 teas salt
¾ cup chopped walnuts
¾ cup raisins
In a mixing bowl cream the butter, sugar, and add egg. Stir in orange juice. Add rest of ingredients.
Mix until moist. Bake 350 degrees in a greased loaf pan for 55 minutes. Let cool in pan.
Eats best the second day.

Apricot Ginger Scones

Apricot -Ginger Scones

3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
½ teas. Each salt and baking soda
¾ cup unsalted butter cut in small pieces
¾ cup chopped dried apricots (http://www.cjolsoncherries.com/)
1/3 cup diced crystallized ginger
1 teaspoon grated lemon
1 cup buttermilk
In a food processor , whirl together flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, and salt.
Add butter, whirl until course crumbs form. Add apricots, ginger and peel. Pulse until just blended.
Add buttermilk and pulse until just moistened.
Scrape dough on to a floured board and knead about 6 turns until holds together. On a 12 x 15 inch lightly greased baking sheet, pat dough into an oval about 7 x 12 inches. With a floured sharp knife, cut diagonal lines through the dough forming 8 or 9 triangles.
Bake 400 degrees until golden brown, about 25 minutes
Break along scores to serve

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Fountain of Youth?

DALLAS - By just lifting weights twice a week for an hour, women can battle the buildup of
tummy fat that often takes hold with aging, a new study suggests. And they didn't even diet.

The study focused on intra-abdominal fat, the deep fat that wraps itself around organs and is the most unhealthy because it's linked with heart disease.
"One of the most common complaints in women, especially as we continue to age, especially as we go through menopause, the No. 1 complaint is abdominal growth," said Dr. Tracy Stevens, a cardiologist who directs the women's heart center at St. Luke's Hospital in Kansas City.

"It's the apple-shaped person I'm most worried about," said Stevens, who was not involved in the study. "The more central the fat, the more it's laid down in the arteries."
In it, 164 overweight and obese Minnesota women ages 24 to 44 were divided evenly into two groups. One group participated in a two-year weight-training program and the other was simply given a brochure recommending exercise of 30 minutes to an hour most days of the week. Both groups were told not to change their diets in a way that might lead to weight changes.
Women who did the weight-training for two years had only a 7 percent increase in intra-abdominal fat, compared to a 21 percent increase in the group given exercise advice.

The strength-training group also decreased body fat percentage by almost 4 percent, while the group just given advice remained the same.

"I think we need to provide people with multiple possibilities, multiple roads to the same end. If this is what you're willing to do, I'll tell you what you can get out of it," said the lead author of the study, Kathryn Schmitz, an epidemiologist at the school of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
Researchers reported only marginal effects from the training on total fat mass and the fat you can pinch under the skin
.
Using both free weights and machines, the women in the strength-training group worked out for about an hour and were encouraged to gradually increase the weights they lifted.

"This is not a program you could do in your home, unless you can afford to have a full gym in your basement," Schmitz said.
The women, who completed 70 percent of the advised exercise throughout the study, were in supervised strengthening classes for 16 weeks.

Schmitz said the focus was on chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps, lower back, buttocks and thighs. She noted that adding muscle mass can help overweight women move faster so they burn more calories.

Dr. Rita F. Redberg, a cardiologist at the University of California San Francisco, pointed out that since muscle burns more calories than fat, increasing muscle mass means losing more calories.

"Certainly, any kind of exercise is better than not doing anything," Redberg said. But for "maximal benefit, cardio with weight training will get a lot more bang for your buck."
"I think exercise is the fountain of youth," she said. "If it was a pill, everyone would be taking it."
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