Stone Cut Bodies

Live healthy, live vibrant, and fall in love with your body.


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Beet Crack

Recently my father gifted me with an immersion blender. (If you don’t have one, stop what you are doing immediately, run out to Costco, and buy one.) My head swarmed with ideas for the plethora of soups I could make. I could barely contain myself. (I excite easily.) It’s been unseasonably chilly in Los Angeles so the prospect of new soup ideas was thrilling. I decided on something with beets (I knocked back a few too many Maker’s Marks on the rocks this weekend, and beets help to detoxify the liver). Unfortunately, the day I decided to make this new creation was the one day it was about 102 degrees in L.A. I didn’t care. Heat be damned! And good thing, because this soup was delicious. So delicious, in fact, I am calling it “beet crack.” And because of the heat, I also discovered it’s tasty chilled. In addition to being super yummy, beets are high in the antioxidant betacyanin, which give them their bright red color, as well as potassium, fiber and folate. Happy Health!

* My culinary posts are meant to be guidelines, not recipes. They are different from what you would usually find in a cookbook, because I think cooking should be inspired and new every time you do it. If you like heat, add a sh**load of cayenne or jalapenos to one of my recipes. If my guideline calls for cilantro but cilantro tastes like soap to you, leave it out. When I cook, I get a buzz from the thrill of creation. The same can happen to you.

Creamy Beet and Goat Cheese Soup

Beet Crack

about 4 medium beets, washed, peeled and chopped into bite sized chunks

4-6 oz chevre goat cheese

1/4-1/2 cup hemp seeds (or quinoa could be tasty)

1/2 cup or so chicken or vegetable broth

1/2 cup or so almond milk (or any kind of milk you like)

1 1/2 shallots, chopped

10-16 cloves of garlic, chopped (less if you’re not hunting vampires)

lemon zest from 1/2 lemon

handful chopped fresh parsley to garnish

splash white wine (red might be interesting too)

2ish tbsp olive oil

Saute garlic and shallot in olive oil in a medium pot over medium heat until slightly golden (about 5 minutes). Add a splash of the wine or a little water if they begin to stick to the bottom. Add beets and wine and a little of the broth, and steam until soft (15-20 minutes). Stir in remaining broth, almond milk and goat cheese, stirring until the goat cheese is melted and combined. I scooped out about 1/4 of the beet chunks before blending, because I wanted a slightly chunky soup, but you could leave them in if you prefer a smooth consistency. If you have an immersion blender, use it to blend the soup. If not, a food processor or regular blender will work just fine. Once the soup is blended, transfer back to the pot and add lemon zest and hemp seeds. Reheat if necessary. Garnish with parsley and enjoy!

 

 


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Favorite Soup

When I was growing up, my little sister would go nuts for something  she called “favorite soup,” which was, unfortunately, Top Ramen. (I still can’t believe our parents let us eat this. They were very particular about healthy eating habits, but somehow this slipped by their radar…) Like most commercial soups, it’s laden with preservatives, MSG, and corn syrup, to name a few unsavory characters. Most soups can be made at home in just a little more time than it takes to pop open a can or throw noodles in water with an aluminum bag full of chemicals. As an adult, I have my own Favorite Soup – Asian Egg-Drop Chicken Soup (or Asian Egg-Drop Tofu Soup if you’re veggie). I make it often and in large quantities so I can just reheat for a few days. It’s full of healthy veggies and lean protein and it’s hearty enough to fill you up but light enough to keep you healthy. I’ll take that over “chicken flavored” soup any day. Happy Health!

* My culinary posts are meant to be guidelines, not recipes. They are different from what you would usually find in a cookbook, because I think cooking should be inspired and new every time you do it. If you like heat, add a sh**load of cayenne or jalapenos to one of my recipes. If my guideline calls for cilantro but cilantro tastes like soap to you, leave it out. When I cook, I get a buzz from the thrill of creation. The same can happen to you.

Favorite Soup (or Asian Egg-Drop Chicken Soup)

Favorite Soup

four cups or so chicken or veggie broth

four or five chicken breasts, (or 1 package of tofu if you’re veggie) chopped into bite size chunks

several bunches of bok choy, washed and chopped

head or so broccoli, washed and chopped

one small onion, chopped

10-16 cloves of garlic, chopped (less if you’re not warding off vampires)

two egg whites

juice from 1/2 medium lemon

small bunch cilantro, washed and chopped

2-4 scallions, chopped

1 or 2 tbsp grapeseed or rice bran oil

2 tsp sesame seed oil

dash tamari

 

Heat the grapeseed or rice bran oil in a large pot over medium heat with garlic and onion until slightly browned. Add broth, chicken and chopped veggies and turn heat to high. As soon as the soup begins to  boil turn the burner off and drop egg whites in, stirring with a fork. Add lemon juice, sesame oil, tamari, scallions and cilantro. Easy peasy soup in minutes!

 


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Creamy Cauliflower Truffle Oil Soup

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I love soup. I also love cauliflower. And I love truffle oil so much I think it should be a beverage. Since temperatures in Los Angeles have been plummeting into the low 50s, I thought why not throw these things I love together to make a hearty hot soup? It was a good thought, because it turned out to be G.d. delish. Happy Health!

* My culinary posts are meant to be guidelines, not recipes. They are different from what you would usually find in a cookbook, because I think cooking should be inspired and new every time you do it. If you like heat, add a sh**load of cayenne or jalapenos to one of my recipes. If my guideline calls for cilantro but cilantro tastes like soap to you, leave it out. When I cook, I get a buzz from the thrill of creation. The same can happen to you.

Creamy Cauliflower Truffle Oil Soup

Cauliflower Truffle Soup

1 head cauliflower, chopped into medium florets

1 or 2 cups water

1/4 cup-ish chopped onion

1 shallot, chopped (optional – I just happened to have one on hand so I chopped it up and threw it in)

1/2 cup-ish chicken broth (veggie if you’re veggie)

1/4 cup almond or regular milk

1 tbsp butter

1/2 tbsp olive oil

1-2 tbsp truffle oil (depending on how much you love the stuff)

10 cloves garlic (less if you want anyone to ever love you again)

salt to taste

chives, chopped for garnish

Steam cauliflower in a pot with water over medium heat for 20-30 minutes until cauliflower is soft. Drain water, puree cauliflower in a food processor, adding olive oil and almond milk.

In a medium pot, saute onions, garlic and shallot in butter until browned over medium heat, adding chicken or veggie stock if they stick to the pot. Add pureed cauliflower along with chicken stock and truffle oil. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Puree soup in food processor to remove garlic and onion lumps. Top with chives and try not to eat the whole pot!

 

 

 


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Cooking with Hemp! (AND Booze!)

So I am currently studying to become a Holistic Nutritionist, and for an assignment this week I was instructed to find a healthy food I have never cooked before and make it into something magical. Uh…. I was in a bit of a bind. I’ve cooked almost everything at least once. So I set off for Whole Foods in search of a bright, new health food. It was difficult. Kohlrabi? Been there. Celeriac? Done that. Nutritional yeast? Yes, even nut yeast. I was about to give up. And then I saw them. Hemp seeds! A ha! I have never even tasted hemp seeds let alone cook with them. So I filled a bag from the bulk section and brought them home. Now what the heck to do with them? I took a little taste to see what I was working with. Their flavor was like a cross between walnuts and quinoa to me – nutty but grain-like at the same time. It’s been a little chilly in L.A. recently (I think it got down to 50 degrees a few days ago!) and I have been wanting to try my hand at homemade tomato soup, so I decided to make tomato soup with hemp seeds. Lucky for me it worked out great and tasted delicious! And I discovered hemp is quite the nutritional powerhouse, loaded with vitamins, minerals, protein, and Omega 3 fatty acids. All that in a bag of hemp! Happy Health!

* My culinary posts are meant to be guidelines, not recipes. They are different from what you would usually find in a cookbook, because I think cooking should be inspired and new every time you do it. If you like heat, add a sh**load of cayenne or jalapenos to one of my recipes. If my guideline calls for cilantro but cilantro tastes like soap to you, leave it out. When I cook I get a buzz from the thrill of creation. The same can happen to you.

 

Creamy Tomato Soup with Hemp Seeds

Creamy Tomato Soup with Hemp

five or six medium tomatoes, chopped

ten to fourteen cloves of garlic, chopped (you should maybe use less, I like a LOT of garlic)

1/4-1/2 cup red wine

1/2 cup or so tomato juice (optional)

1/2-1 cup chicken or veggie broth

1/2-3/4 cup almond milk (or whatever sort of milk-like liquid you have on hand)

1/2 cup or so hemp seeds

tsp or so chopped fresh basil (you can use dried if you don’t have fresh)

1 tbsp butter

1 tbsp olive oil

sprinkle of paprika

Parmesan cheese (optional)

 

Put garlic in a medium to large pot with olive oil and butter. Cook on medium heat until garlic starts to brown. Add a splash of red wine if it starts to stick to the pan. Add tomatoes, broth, tomato juice and paprika. Keep everything to a low boil until the tomatoes become very soft and the ingredients become stew-like. Add wine and boil five or so additional minutes. Add basil, turn off heat. Add almond milk and let cool slightly. Blend in a food processor or blender until you have the consistency you’d like. Return to pot and add hemp seeds. Heat and serve! Garnish with Parmesan if that seems like a good idea to you.

 

 

 

 


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Soup for (The End of) Summer

For the last few days it has been about a gazillion degrees in Los Angeles, and that may be an understatement. I still love to cook and I still need to eat and I always love soup so gazpacho is the perfect no-cook meal and it’s loaded with vegetables. Plus I can make a bunch of it and just pull this chilled soup out of the fridge whenever hunger strikes. As an added bonus it is healthy and light, full of vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, magnesium and fiber to name just a few of the nutrients in all those veggies. You can add chicken, shrimp, tofu or any kind of protein you like to round out this soup and give it a little oomf. Cheers to the dog days of the end of summer!

 * My culinary posts are meant to be guidelines, not recipes. They are different from what you would usually find in a cookbook, because I think cooking should be inspired and new every time you do it. If you like heat, add a sh**load of cayenne or jalapenos to one of my recipes. If my guideline calls for cilantro but cilantro tastes like soap to you, leave it out. When I cook I get a buzz from the thrill of creation. The same can happen to you.

Gazpacho

I made three versions, I love them all in their own special way.

Basic Gazpacho:

Basic Gazpacho

3 or 4 medium tomatoes, any kind you like

1 medium cucumber

1 medium green pepper

1 small jalapeno

1/2 small onion

2 cloves garlic

1 small bunch cliantro

1 tbsp-ish balsmic vinegar (you can use any type of vinegar you like, but I prefer balsamic for this soup because it adds a complexity beyond just tanginess)

juice of half a lime

1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

dash salt

Chop all the veggies into chunks and chop the cilantro. Through it all in a food processor and pulse until you have a consistency you like.

 

Avocado Gazpacho:

Avocado Gazpacho

I added one medium avocado chopped into chunks to the basic recipe and pulsed in the food processor. It adds a richness and heart-healthy fat to the soup. This was delicious, but looked a bit like baby vomit so….

 

Kefir Gazpacho:

Kefir Gazpacho

I had never made this before today, but I was looking for something to make the soup creamy and happened to have kefir (cultured dairy with a consistency between milk and yogurt) in my fridge.  I thought, “What the heck? I’ll dump this in there…” And I’ll be darned, it was freakin gooooood! And kefir adds protein and tummy-healthy probiotics! I added about 3/4 of a cup to the basic recipe guideline. Add more or less to attain the creaminess you want.

They were all so tasty, I actually licked the bowl. Happy Health!


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Croutons That Are Good For You!

Salads rock.  And soups rock.  But both are better with croutons.  Unfortunately croutons are nutritionally vacant, and loaded with fat and calories along with preservatives and hydrogenated oils.  So here is a recipe guideline for healthy chickpea croutons you can make easily and quickly at home, and use to garnish your soups and salads with a healthy crunch!  Chickpeas are high in soluble fiber, which is good for your digestive system, and also helps lower bad cholesterol.  They are also a good source of protein.  Woot!

 * My culinary posts are meant to be guidelines, not recipes. They are different from what you would usually find in a cookbook, because I think cooking should be inspired and new every time you do it. If you like heat, add a sh**load of cayenne or jalapenos to one of my recipes. If my guideline calls for cilantro but cilantro tastes like soap to you, leave it out. When I cook I get a buzz from the thrill of creation. The same can happen to you.

Chickpea Croutons

Chickpea Croutons

1 can chickpeas, drained (or about 2 cups)

1 tbs olive oil

1/2 tsp ish garlic powder

1/2 tsp ish onion powder

1/2 tsp paprika

dash salt

dash pepper

whatever other seasoning your little heart desires

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.  Place chickpeas on parchment paper on a cookie sheet greased with olive oil and bake at 300-325 for about an hour, or until chickpeas have dried and become airy and crunchy.  Happy Health!