Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Top Ten of Green and Lean '12

"And so happy Christmas, I hope you had fun.  
Another year over, and a new one just begun."  
- John Lennon

I started this blog four years ago.  At that time, I had recently turned 30 and decided I needed to overhaul my lifestyle habits to include more physical activity and healthy balanced nutritious eating.  I wasn’t willing to go the "diet" rice cake and cayenne water route, however, so I spent many hours in my kitchen cleaning, chopping, preparing, and cooking a lot of vegetables.  

Since I needed a place to record all the great healthy food I was cooking and eating, I started this Green and Lean blog.  It kept me accountable, it kept me entertained, and it kept me busy.  I have loved every minute of this blog.

Green and Lean has MORE than served its intended purpose in my life.  Throughout these four years, I’ve maintained a significant weight loss, I’ve discovered new foods, I’ve become more confident in the kitchen, and I’ve really enjoyed my readers and commenters.

And, as often happens in life, things grow and change.  I have grown and changed.  I no longer want to spend one or two nights a week taking photographs (I was terrible at that part anyways) and trying to think of something interesting to say about me or my food.  I am finding myself more often re-making a good recipe from the archive, rather than trying to dream up something new.  And, I'm finding a majority of my time now needs to be spent outside of the kitchen with people I care about.

So, it's time to say goodbye to this space I've called my little slice of the Internet for the last four years.  

Please know I will continue to live as much as possible according to the food philosophy I preach here.  I will continue to eat as much homemade food as I can: mostly fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, some fish, seafood, and poultry, excellent quality cheese, lots and lots of red, white, pink, and sparkling wines, and occasional homemade, all-natural sweet indulgences.  It makes sense for me, and seems to be working.  My health has never been better.

Thank you so much for reading, commenting, talking to me or listening to me talk about food, or sharing this blog with others.  I would have NEVER kept it up for this long without your awesome feedback.  I am so blessed to be surrounded by such supportive people, both in person and virtually. 

May your 2013 and beyond be filled with amazing meals, shared with wonderful people.  And, if you see me around, PLEASE tell me all about it!

Here are my favorite recipes of 2012:

10.  Strawberry Icebox Cake – A dead simple and beautiful summer dessert.  I know lots of you have made it, because you’ve told me about it!  I’m glad you like it.

9.  Dragon Bowl – One giant bowl of nutrition, so similar to Hippie Chow.  Use the Carrot Ginger dressing to switch it up if you get sick of the Tahini dressing!

8.  Okonomiyaki – Just because I love saying it and I had a lot of fun writing that post.  Sometimes I think I’m very hilarious.  This was one of those times.

7.  Almond Milk – So simple!  So cheap!  So devoid of fillers, additives, chemicals, sweeteners, and preservatives! It’s just plain silly to buy it in a carton when you can make it at home.

6.  Rosettes and Fattigmand – I only ate two tiny pieces of fattigmand on Christmas Eve, but we were all happy to have it on the sweets tray.  It’s our heritage!

5.  Honey Mustard Roasted Chicken – Everyone needs a “go-to” chicken recipe.  This is mine.  Perfect for entertaining and a guaranteed crowd pleaser.

4.  Grilled Zucchini Enchiladas – Mexican food is probably what I crave most.  This is a slightly healthier take on it.  Plus it uses all that zucchini we have in the summer!

3.  Yoatmeal – Nearly every weekday morning since this post I’ve eaten combined oats and yogurt for my breakfast.  I like it with any combination of peanut butter, fruit, coconut, nuts, or whatever I can scrounge from the fridge or pantry.  So filling, and a great start to every day.

2.  Vegetable Stock – I use it all the time, and if I'm running low in the freezer, I panic.  I use it for soups, risotto, cooking beans or grains, making gravy, etc.  It’s FREE and takes only an hour.  Plus you get second life out of your vegetable scraps.  It’s the ultimate in recycling!

1.  Colin’s Garlic Citrus Shrimp – I can’t not mention him, I miss him terribly.  He and Johanna have been a huge inspiration to me and motivation for getting and staying healthy.  Knowing these two amazing individuals has cured me from ever again taking my health or the health of my loved ones for granted.  If there is any silver lining in the awful diagnoses these two have faced, it's that they have both helped me change my life for the better, and for that I will be always grateful.

THREE YEARS AGO:  Top Ten of Green and Lean '09

3 comments:

  1. Great ending to a great blog. I will miss it but am excited to move on to this next chapter of life with you! And don't worry I will still be open to all of your cooking!

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  2. WOW! I am little teary eyed right now! SO SO much has happened in those four years and thoughts of those years will be forever sprinkled throughout these recipes! I will treasure them always! AND I know we will make many many more to come and find ways to share our lives, hearts, stories, recipes and quite a few cocktails along the way no matter where each of us are. Thanks for helping SO many of us get through/grow/change/lose and gain these last four years. YOU are a saint. ALL MY LOVE! Cassandra

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  3. I haven't looked at your recipes but the pictures and ideas are fantastic.

    I have been making black bean in a pressure-cooker for sometime now:
    * 3 cups black beans (soaked)
    * 1/2 onion chopped
    * 1 garlic clove chopped
    * 2 teaspoons salt
    * 1/4 teaspoon salt

    In the pressure cooker, the above is done in 30 minutes!

    I think most people would say this recipe is bland -- and perhaps it is but I still love it. However, I came upon your blog/site because I was looking for a ratio for cumin/coriander/cayenne powders to add to the above. Any ideas?


    .Experiments(Jan 20, 2013)
    To the above, I added the following ingredients.
    * 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
    * 1/2 teaspoon corriander powder
    * 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder

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