Friday, May 13, 2011

Fitness Friday: Workout 1

I've mentioned the fabulous Joan Dandeneau several times before (like when I posted this totally delicious Hummus recipe). She is a crazy busy mom of three who teaches the most amazing workout class ever, Stroller Strength. If you live anywhere near Jacksonville, FL or Winston-Salem, NC you should totally check the class out. She looks great, feels great, and has tons of energy because of eating clean and working out. Plus she's setting an excellent example for her 3 little girls and motivating countless women to make healthy changes in their lives too.

Here is a great little workout she wrote for me that you can do right in your own home. The only equipment you'll need are some dumbbells (I used big cans of crushed tomatoes in bags at my Mom's b/c I didn't have dumbbells!) or resistance tubing

Workout 1
  • 2 x 15 step ups each leg (use a stable chair or bench)
  • 2 x 20 full range sit ups with a jab cross to either side
  • 2 x 15 push-ups (try to perform these on your toes and palms, but if you have to, drop to your knees)
  • 2 x 20 pop squats (start with feet together, jump out and squat down, jump together and repeat)
  • 2 x 10 each leg mountain climbers (in plank position, alternate pulling knees into chest, as you progress, speed up the legs)
  • 2 x 15 bicep curl overhead shoulder press (standing, hold tubing, do a bicep curl, rotate palms and press overhead, repeat) This may be too tight, if so, stand on tubing with only one leg and alternate arms if needed (if you don't have tubing, use dumbbells)
  • 2 x 25 body weight squats fast, stand on tubing and separate feet to create some resistance, hold handles at shoulders and squat (or hold dumbbells on your shoulders)
  • 2 x 20 each side seated oblique twists holding something heavy like a medicine ball, dumbbell, bag of flour, (or baby!)
  • 2 x 15 dips off chair or bench
Optional: Sprint in place for 1 minute in between sets for a little extra cardio

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Basic hand-kneaded Whole Wheat Bread

Makes 2 loaves, 16 slices each
Briony has been trying to get me to buy a second-hand bread maker for years, and I just haven't. Seriously, I like making bread by hand! I like feeling the dough and kneading it to perfection, and I guess it makes me feel connected with my grandmothers to do something I know they also did for their families. My favorite basic recipe is derived from the book that my Kitchen Aid Mixer came with. I altered the method a little (since I like to proof my dough) and add in a little Vital Wheat Gluten, which helps whole wheat loaves be more light and airy.

  • 1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp sugar, divided (with sugar it is not "clean", you can use honey or sucanat instead)
  • 2 cups warm water (105 to 115 degrees F)
  • 4 1/2 tsp (or 2 packages) active dry yeast
  • 5 to 6 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup dry milk powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup oil
ONE: "Proofing" yeast means to activate before adding it to the flour. So, add the 1 Tbsp of sugar to hot water and stir to dissolve. Whisk in the yeast and let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes.

The yeast mixture before and after. Note how much it has puffed up.

TWO: Measure 4 cups of flour into the bowl of your stand mixer (such as a Kitchen Aid). Add the powdered milk and salt. Use the dough hook and turn your machine on to mix the dry ingredients together. Slowly add the yeast mixture while the dough hook is spinning and make certain you get all the bubbles that cling to the side. Add the oil.

THREE: Allow the mixer to bring the dough together until all the flour has been incorporated. You may have to scrape the bowl a time or two and you may have to increase the speed a bit if the motor sounds like it's struggling. Add the remaining 2 cups of flour half a cup at a time. The dough should start to form a ball and the sides of the bowl should be relatively clean.

FOUR: Finish the kneading by hand. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead it for 6 to 8 minutes. If the dough is sticking to your work surface, add another tablespoon or so of flour. Be careful to not add too much flour as this can dry out your dough. Remember that it is okay if the dough is sticky, you just don't want it to stick!

On the left is the dough just as I tipped it out of the bowl, and the right is
after I kneaded it for 8 minutes. Note how there isn't any flour
on my work surface after I kneaded.

FIVE: Let the dough rest while you wash your bowl, dry it well and grease it. Place the dough in the prepared bowl and cover it with a clean towel. Let it rise in a warm spot (the top of your running clothes dryer is a great location!). Let the dough rise for 1 hour.
The dough before and after the 60 minute rise.

SIX: During the last few minutes that the dough is rising and prepare your loaf pans by greasing them well. (Don't tell Briony but I started using shortening a while ago and I haven't had a loaf stick since. For me, it works better than olive oil spray, butter, parchment paper or any other thing I've tried. Briony would use coconut oil.)

SEVEN: Turn the dough out of the bowl and flatten it a bit to push out some of the air bubbles. Knead it for about 30 seconds and then shape it into a loaf. Drop the dough into your prepared loaf pan and let it sit for a few minutes. This short rest will allow the dough to relax so you can manipulate better. Push the dough down so it is flat and the edges touch the edges of the pan. Let the dough rise again for 45 minutes (or up to an hour if you need). During the last few minutes of rising, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

On the left is the shaped dough, and on the right you can see
I flattened it and pushed it towards the edges of the pan.

After the second rise

EIGHT: Bake the loaves for 30 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick and have it come out without any dough bits on it. Let the loaves rest in the pan for a few minutes and then remove them from the pans and let them finish cooling on a wire rack.

Posted by Barb! :)


Per slice - 126 Calories (23 Calories from Fat), 2.5g Fat, 1mg Cholesterol, 172 mg Sodium, 21.5g Total Carbohydrates, 1g Dietary Fiber, 5g Sugars, 4g Protein, 0% DV Vitamin A, 0% DV Vitamin C, 6% DV Calcium, 6% DV Iron


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Clean Eating Asian Style Peanut Butter Slaw

Makes 8 Servings
When I was living by myself I used to live on this slaw. I think I must have made it a dozen times over a six month period; so often I memorized the ingredient list! The dressing keeps well in the fridge for a few days and you can simply pour it over the cabbage as you wish (Storing the slaw "dressed" is not recommended. The cabbage loses its wonderful crunch.) When I took these pictures I was out of green onions and cilantro, so they couldn't be included. And, I promise you, it tastes better than it looks. :-)

  • 1 small head Napa cabbage (the crinkly green kind)
  • 1/3 cup green onions, sliced
  • 6 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 5 Tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 4 tsp reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 6 Tbsp evaporated cane juice with 1/8 tsp molasses OR 6 Tbsp sucanat
  • 4 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • fresh cilantro for garnish
ONE: Slice the head of cabbage in half and carefully cut out the core. Thinly slice the cabbage into strips.

TWO: Combine the ingredients for the dressing in a small mixing bowl. Whisk (slowly at first) until combined and creamy.

THREE: Divide out the portion of cabbage you want to eat with today's meal and add some of the green onions. Pour on a bit of the dressing and toss to combine. Garnish with the cilantro.

Posted by Barb! :)


Per Serving with about 2 1/2 Tbsp dressing - 119 Calories (68 Calories from Fat), 7.5g Fat, 1g Saturated Fat, 0mg Cholesterol, 306mg Sodium, 8g Total Carbohydrates, 2g Dietary Fiber, 5g Sugars, 5g Protein, 95% DV Vitamin A, 80% DV Vitamin C, 11% DV Calcium, 7% DV Iron