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Omelet with Fresh Spinach, Sauteed Red Peppers & Onions, and Freshly-Grated Parmesan Cheese

     Eggs are so versatile. Pair them with herbs, vegetables, or the ever popular bacon. Make them into a quiche or frittata, scramble them, fry them, or do what I do, and make omelets out of them. 
     Some people add milk to their eggs, thinking this makes them fluffier. Honestly, I don't see a difference. I set my heat to medium (about a "5" on the dial), and I lubricate the pan with butter or coconut oil. 
     Then I pour the scrambled eggs (usually 3 of them) into the pan and immediately put the lid over the top. This way, the top cooks a little while the bottom cooks. When the edges come away from the pan, I get my spatula and flip the omelet to let the top cook the rest of the way, only about 10 seconds longer. Transfer to a plate and add shredded cheese, or whatever you want as a filling. Some people prefer to add things to the eggs themselves, but I find it easier to add other ingredients after the eggs are cooked. The only reason I would veer from this is if I wanted to add herbs. The heat brings out their flavor.
     Ever wonder if brown eggs are better than white ones? There's no difference whatsoever. The reason some eggs are brown simply lies with which chicken laid them. Some chickens lay white eggs, some lay brown ones, and some lay green ones! I own chickens that give us all three colors! Very cool.

     My egg-buying advice: get your eggs from a local producer who can tell you what living conditions are like for their chickens. Mine are relatively free range. That means they're allowed out of their cage/roost to feed on insects. When they stay in, like in bad weather, they eat regular chicken feed. So not completely organic, but as close as you can get.
     
Otherwise, I suggest organic free-range eggs. But what's the difference between that and "cage free"? "Cage free" just means that the chickens were not kept in battery cages. 

"Free range", by USDA definition, only means that the chickens have access to the outside, not that they are ‘grown’ outside.
Straight from the horse's mouth, the USDA trade guidelines for the free range designation (section 10.5, page 13) say: " The birds are raised in heated and air-cooled growing houses with access to the outdoors…"

Wow. According to this, my chickens are going over and beyond their guidelines. Anybody want some eggs?

Until then, you have some educated decisions to make!
  
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Omelet with Sauteed Onions and Garlic, and a Spinach, Basil & Cashew Pesto
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Omelet with Goat Cheese, Capers, Tzatziki Sauce, and Diced Tomatoes
 
 
     Before today, I had never sampled a blood orange. I carefully pulled back the peel so as to not let any of the juice escape before I had my first taste. Somehow I knew this would be special. I pushed my finger into the center to separate the sections, and pulled the orange apart into its two halves. Wow. It looked like it was infused with wine, it was such a rosy red inside. Then, I bit into a section and let the juice burst onto my tongue. I let it swim in my mouth, savoring its richness... Ahhh...!
     Such was my first taste of the blood orange. No wonder people have been going crazy over this thing! I immediately thought of all the things I could make with this common delicacy: salad dressing. Dessert. Margaritas! 
     Well, it was lunchtime, so, salad dressing it is! Online, there are countless dressings, but none that are creamy. So I devised my own. Next time, (which will be very soon!) I'll make a larger amount and add more yogurt. Maybe even make it Greek yogurt.
     Enjoy this one, guys! DEEEE-licious!
---Jenny

SPINACH, CHARD & PAN-SEARED CHICKEN SALAD WITH CREAMY BLOOD ORANGE DRESSING

2 cups chard, stemmed and torn in bite-sized pieces
2 cups baby spinach
1/2 cup sliced cucumber
1/4 cup tablespoons diced onion
1/2 cup diced red pepper
8-10 ounces pan-seared chicken tenderloin
(2 tbsp olive oil in frying pan -- approx. 4-5 minutes per side)

Dressing:
juice of two blood oranges, about 2/3 cup
1/4 cup yogurt, Preferably Greek yogurt
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/4 cup olive oil

In a food processor, blend oranges, yogurt, garlic and cilantro. Stream in olive oil as processor runs to acheive desired consistency.
 
 
     Here we go! While you can still count on me to post things on the See Our Latest page, I have dedicated space here to post great "diet" recipes, the first of which is Baked Eggplant Chips. As is the case with most of my inventions, I was disappointed to discover that this was not my invention. Shoot! Oh, well, they're pretty tasty anyway. They can be accompanied by a low-fat dip, maybe yogurt-based, and I think I'll try that next time. But this one includes a pesto of spinach, cilantro (great for detoxing) and cashew. I actually felt like I was cheating, this was so good!
     One suggestion, I used a regular eggplant, so some pieces were really big. For a more uniform size, I would suggest a Japanese eggplant, and you can even use this recipe for zucchini!

Baked Eggplant Chips

1-2 eggplants, preferably Japanese variety
olive oil
sea salt

Slice eggplant, with a mandoline or other slicer, into 1/4" thick slices. Brush lightly both sides of each slice with olive oil. Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet, and place slices on sheet. Bake at 400 for about twenty minutes. About ten minutes in, flip slices over and continue to bake until browned.

Pesto (pictured above): 
2 cups fresh spinach 
1 cup fresh cilantro 
1/2 cup cashews 
1-2 cloves garlic 
olive oil

Process spinach, cilantro, cashews and garlic in a food processor. Stream olive oil until desired consistency.
 
 
     I began my WEIGHT-LOSS WAR ten days ago, and I've only lost four pounds. I cheated yesterday and gained a pound! Arrrgh! That'll teach me to eat a Mexican sope. And chips and salsa. And a piece of cornbread... Sheesh.
     I usually have one day where I absolutely lose my self-control and just carb out. Unfortunately for me, that's what my body loves the most. It's more of a love to hate. Or hate to love. Whatever. All I know is I have 50 pounds to lose, and it looks like it's going to be a slow row to hoe. 
   So here we go. I will limit my dairy and meat, and try, TRY, to cut out carbs altogether. I will allow myself the occasional brown rice, and if I happen to make sweets, I get two bites and the rest will be given away!

     As for supplements and the like, here will be my regimen:  
          --- Oil Pulling - something I recently discovered that helps me wake up and detox. And I received a compliment, after doing 
             it only four times, that my teeth were whiter and prettier!
          --- Acidophilus, the potent stuff. Because everybody needs a healthy colon.
          --- A daily dose of powdered greens, including alfalfa and kelp. It looks like pond scum, but it doesn't taste bad, and it's   
               great for energy and as a raw food source.
          --- Kombucha: a fermented drink that contains a great source of probiotics. The more, the better. I make my own at home, 
             so cost is soooo affordable!
          --- A drink of fresh vegetable juices, namely, carrot, celery, green apple or pear, lime and a bit of ginger, because I like    
            things SPICY! :D

Aside from that, I get vegetables and meat. It's a good thing I'm creative, because that could get pretty boring PRETTY fast. 
Ugh. Now I'm bored. 
     Anywho, the purpose of this page is to document my story. I think it'll keep me motivated. Here goes!
 

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