Peaches and Cream

I feel like I’ve been talking a lot about the importance of being prepared lately. It’s probably because that has been the name of the game for me lately. Right now, in “Big Fish” land, we are in what we call tech rehearsal. These rehearsals are when all of the elements of the show come together. Light, sound, costumes, sets, wigs and special effects all begin to introduce themselves to the show, thus creating the big and final picture. It is incredibly exciting to see all of these gorgeous aspects come to life, but there is a down side. It is really time-consuming. We are at the theatre for 10 out hours out of a 12 hour work day- Monday through Saturday. I’m not complaining… I have an AMAZING job and I feel soooo lucky, but it’s a lot.

My regime as of late has been:

Wake up by 7:45. Take an early work out class. Run any errands that need to be run. Head to the theatre!

I don’t have a ton of time to myself, and therefore, I try to make my food ahead of time!

I am in love with Overnight Oats. I love chewy and sweet they taste. I love that I can eat them out of a mason jar. Mostly, I love that they are sitting in my fridge, just waiting for me to grab and eat them!!!!

I wanted to share one of my favorite overnight oat recipes. It is ridiculously yummy 🙂

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Peaches and Cream Overnight Oats

  • 1/2 cup Instant rolled oats (I use gluten-free)
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 TBS greek yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp chia seeds
  • 2 packets stevia
  • 1 whole peach chopped
  • 1/2 banana sliced
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • dash of cinnamon

In a bowl, combine oats, milk, water, chia seeds, stevia, vanilla and cinnamon. Microwave for about 2 minutes (keep an eye out that it doesn’t spill over!!)** Transfer the mixture to a mason jar. Add peach, banana, and greek yogurt. Make sure that everything is mixed together. Put it in the fridge over night and THERE YOU GO!!!

**In order to prevent the oatmeal from spilling over the bowl: Simply open the microwave door every 10 seconds (about). If you watch the oatmeal cook, you will see it rising. Whenever it looks like it is getting close to the top, open the door!!!! Repeat this until the oatmeal is cooked 🙂

I like to enjoy my overnight oats cold, but you can definitely reheat them when you are ready to eat.

Happy Friday!

xoxoSYN

Experiments with oatmeal!

First, I want to start this post with a shout out to spin class.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am a workout nut. I love the feeling of getting a good sweat on, especially in the morning. Today, I took a kick ass Soul Cycle Class with the instructor Rique. If you live in the NY area and haven’t taken his class PLEASE DO. In my opinion, Soul Cycle is always an amazing experience, but this guy is life changing. It is nearly impossible to get into his class, but if you can, go for it. YOU WILL NOT BE disappointed!

Anyway, after I returned from my cycle sesh, I was starving. Oatmeal is always my go to breakfast. It is a fantastic source of slow release carbs. This means the glycemic load of oatmeal doesn’t force your blood sugar to SKY ROCKET like a white refined carb would. It keeps you full and satisfied for a long time. Also, it is a surprisingly good source of protein. With 6 grams in one cup of cooked oatmeal, you can’t go wrong. 6 grams may not sound like a lot, but it is definitely going to add to your protein count for the day.

My favorite oatmeal is Chocolate Oatmeal. I enjoy it nearly every morning. I mean common, who doesn’t love chocolate?! For some reason, I wanted something different. As I thought of about a creative oatmeal idea, I made some coffee. Yummm Coffee…

….Coffee Oatmeal?

yup

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Mocha Oatmeal

  • 1/2 cup dry rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 1 TBS cocoa powder
  • 2 packets stevia
  • 1/2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp instant coffee (I use trader Joes brand)**
  • fruit of choice (Berries are my fave)

Mix all ingredients **EXCEPT Coffee and cocoa powder** in a large bowl and microwave for a minute and a half. Stir and microwave for another minute. Keep a close eye on it.. make sure it doesn’t spill over while microwaving!!! Stir in cocoa and coffee, Top with berries and ENJOY!

**If you don’t have instant coffee, try omitting water and subbing 1/2 cup fresh brewed coffee and 1/2 cup milk of choice. I can’t vouch for the results, but it may work 🙂

I was pleasantly surprised by how good this was! Just goes to show that experimenting in the kitchen can lead to new favorites!!!

xoxoSYN

Experiments with oatmeal!

First, I want to start this post with a shout out to spin class.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am a workout nut. I love the feeling of getting a good sweat on, especially in the morning. Today, I took a kick ass Soul Cycle Class with the instructor Rique. If you live in the NY area and haven’t taken his class PLEASE DO. In my opinion, Soul Cycle is always an amazing experience, but this guy is life changing. It is nearly impossible to get into his class, but if you can, go for it. YOU WILL NOT BE disappointed!

Anyway, after I returned from my cycle sesh, I was starving. Oatmeal is always my go to breakfast. It is a fantastic source of slow release carbs. This means the glycemic load of oatmeal doesn’t force your blood sugar to SKY ROCKET like a white refined carb would. It keeps you full and satisfied for a long time. Also, it is a surprisingly good source of protein. With 6 grams in one cup of cooked oatmeal, you can’t go wrong. 6 grams may not sound like a lot, but it is definitely going to add to your protein count for the day.

My favorite oatmeal is Chocolate Oatmeal. I enjoy it nearly every morning. I mean common, who doesn’t love chocolate?! For some reason, I wanted something different. As I thought of about a creative oatmeal idea, I made some coffee. Yummm Coffee…

….Coffee Oatmeal?

yup

photo-35

Mocha Oatmeal

  • 1/2 cup dry rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 1 TBS cocoa powder
  • 2 packets stevia
  • 1/2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp instant coffee (I use trader Joes brand)**
  • fruit of choice (Berries are my fave)

Mix all ingredients **EXCEPT Coffee and cocoa powder** in a large bowl and microwave for a minute and a half. Stir and microwave for another minute. Keep a close eye on it.. make sure it doesn’t spill over while microwaving!!! Stir in cocoa and coffee, Top with berries and ENJOY!

**If you don’t have instant coffee, try omitting water and subbing 1/2 cup fresh brewed coffee and 1/2 cup milk of choice. I can’t vouch for the results, but it may work 🙂

I was pleasantly surprised by how good this was! Just goes to show that experimenting in the kitchen can lead to new favorites!!!

xoxoSYN

Fast and Easy

People say that they don’t cook because they don’t have time. It is much easier to pick up the phone and order, or to get in the car and drive through. Eating out doesn’t have to equate to unhealthy food. Sometimes, there are considerably healthy options when you are ordering from an establishment. In my opinion, it is absolutely alright to order out once in a while, but it is crucial that we cook our own food the majority of the time.

For one thing, eating out is EXPENSIVE. It is really east to spend $15.00 on a single meal. A home cooked meal will more than likely cost you half that amount.

When we cook our own food, we have complete control. We know exactly how much of each ingredient we are putting in. We can add extra greens, omit excess salt, and make sure that the dish has JUST enough spice 🙂

If time is of the essence, make sure you are prepared! Here are a few suggestions on how to make home cooking easy and fast :

  1. Frozen vegetables: Open the bag, spray a pan, cook…Voala! Veggies cooked in under 5 minutes
  2. Pre-cook grains: Whenever I cook quinoa or brown rice, I make enough to last me for the week. Put it in a Tupperware and store it in the fridge. It re-heats really quickly, and you don’t have to waste your time making and remaking the same thing.—-(Use About 3 cups of water to 1.5 cups of grain when cooking)
  3. Easy Proteins: When I’m in a rush, my go to proteins are: eggs, black beans, and frozen shrimp. Eggs can be cooked in a mug (spray with cooking spray, pour 1/2 cup egg whites and microwave for 1 and a half minutes). Beans can be thrown on anything, and frozen shrimp cook in about 5 minutes.

Here is my favorite quick meal. It is satisfying, fast, and extremely cost-effective 🙂

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Vegetable “fried” Quinoa

  • 1/2 cup liquid egg whites (or 3 whole egg whites)
  • 1/2 bag of frozen veggies (I used asian blend)
  • 1/4 cup quinoa
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1-2 cloves of chopped garlic
  • 2-3 tbs soy sauce
  • 3 tbs water
  • optional: fresh chopped ginger, sriracha sauce

Spray a pan with Non-stick spray. Cook veggies and garlic with 3 tbs of water (cover for about 3 minutes). While veggies are cooking, spray a coffee mug with non-stick spray, and microwave eggs for about 1 1/2 minutes.  Chop the egg whites into small pieces and add along with  soy sauce and quinoa to pan and stir. (Add optional sriracha).

Transfer to a bowl, stir in sesame oil, use chopsticks (because they are fun) and ENJOY!!!

Food cooked at home always tastes better 🙂

xoxoSYN

Hey Dairy!

I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but most of my recipes don’t contain any dairy products. For the past month and a half, I have been experimenting with a dairy free diet. I did this for a number of reasons.

  1. Dairy is an incredibly controversial food source. Many health nuts preach the negative effects of a diet that includes dairy. They say that the body can’t properly digest it.
  2. I wanted to try to live by a diet that included limited grains and natural fats, and unlimited plant food.
  3. A dermatologist told me that dairy is often the cause of skin problems. I suffer from break-outs and wanted to see if cutting dairy out would clear up my situation.

After more than a month of going dairy free, here is what I found:

  • I didn’t miss dairy a ton, but I CRAVED fat. All I wanted was avocado, nuts and Sunbutter
  • I had trouble with digestion (use your imagination, things weren’t moving)
  • I felt like I needed more protein
  • My skin didn’t show any real change

My Conclusion: I process dairy just fine. I really enjoy it in limited portions. I feel satisfied, my body feels good, and I don’t have serious cravings. So, with that said, I’ve decided to reintroduce it into my diet.

Some people may think this is a bad idea, but I am a firm believer in “Bio-individuality”. This is the idea that everyone’s body is different. Everyone needs different sources of fuel to function and feel GOOD.

Tonight after rehearsal I enjoyed this fast, simple, and filling treat. If you are a dairy eater, try it out 🙂

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Greek Yogurt PBQ Bowl

  • 1/2 cup 0%fat greek yogurt
  • 1/2 frozen banana sliced
  • 1/3 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1-2 TBS quinoa
  • 1/2 TBS Sunbutter (or nut butter of choice)
  • 2 packets stevia

Combine yogurt, sunbutter and stevia in a bowl. Mix well. Add fruit and quinoa. Mix again. Enjoy!!

xoxoSYN

Sunday Morning Pancakes

One of my fondest memories is pancake breakfasts on Sunday mornings. My mom would always make my favorite: Loaded chocolate chip pancakes. Of course these were topped with a whipped cream smily face, and topped with powdered sugar and more chocolate chips. This was my 10-year-old self’s dream breakfast.

…and perhaps it still is…

::Sigh:: to be a kid again.

Well, today is Sunday, which also happens to be my day off. This morning, for some reason, I was craving pancakes and my god did I have pancakes! I have been eyeing a couple of recipes and decided to alter/combine/customize a few to make the recipe my own. I was not disappointed.

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Blueberry Pie Pancakes 

topped with Strawberry banana “Syrup”

  • 1/3 cup Flour (I used gluten-free brown rice flour, but any flour will do)
  • 2 TBS rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 2 TBS egg whites
  • 3 packets stevia (more or less depending on how sweet you want)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2/3 tsp baking POWDER
  • 1/2 sliced banana

For the syrup

  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 3 frozen strawberries

(I think fresh would work too)

To make Pancakes, combine all ingredients and mix well. Pour batter into a pan sprayed with cooking spray. Flip each pancake once.  You should make about 3 pancakes.

Next, blend frozen banana and strawberries until smooth. Transfer to a microwave safe container and microwave for about 30 seconds.  Pour on top of your pancakes and Enjoy!!!

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image-101 I’m not the greatest photographer, but I promise these tasted devine

I topped mine with even MORE berries…

YUMMM 🙂

Happy Sunday!!!

xoxoSYN

Run down

The past ten days have been incredibly intense for me. We learned an entire broadway show in just TEN days!!! That is ridiculously fast.

I haven’t mentioned my role in the show. I am what we call a “swing”. My job is to know every female track in the show, and be able to go on at any moment. I go on if someone is sick, injured, has a personal day, is on vacation, etc. Our show has 9 female ensemble members and I am responsible for them all! It truly is the most difficult job I have ever had. It is also really stressful.

I think everything is catching up to me, because when I came home from work today I felt really run down. The instant I start to feel a tickle in my throat I turn to this smoothie. It sounds a little funny to some people, but I promise it tastes delicious. It will help to boost your immune system and kick that cold before it even has a chance to take over your body!!

Before I share the recipe, I need to introduce you to my number one immune booster:

UnknownSpirulina is awesome. It is a blue-green algae and is considered a “super food”. This stuff is OVERFLOWING with nutrients, and is so incredibly good for you. It is also a serious source of vegeterian protein, and will also help to boost your energy!

More Details About Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica

As one of the most nutritious, concentrated whole foods known to humankind, one 3 gram serving of Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica provides:
• 60% protein and an excellent source of Vitamins A, K1, K2, B12 and Iron, Manganese, and Chromium*
• Rich source of health-giving phytonutrients such as carotenoids, GLA, SOD, and phycocyanin*

The Nutritional Benefits
• Strengthens the immune system*
• Boosts energy levels*
• Supports cellular health*
• Supports cardiovascular, eye and brain health*

You can buy it in any health food store, but if you can’t find it, here is a link

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Immune Boost Super Smoothie

  • 1 banana (frozen or fresh)
  • Frozen strawberries (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 cup kale
  • 1 tsp Spirulina
  • 3 packets stevia (more or less depending on how sweet you want it)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbs cacao Powder ***(or regular cocoa powder)
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • 4 ice cubes
  • 1 tbs cooked quinoa (optional. add if you have some already made!)

***Cacao powder is also a super food. It is the powdered form of raw chocolate 🙂

Blend all ingredients and enjoy!!!

I know that the idea of spinach and kale in a smoothie can be intimidating. I also know that the green color freaks some people out. I promise you can’t taste it, and it is a great way to get an added dose of greens!

TRY IT!!!

xoxoSYN