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Monday, May 25, 2015

Healthy Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins - perfect bite-sized picnic desserts!






















We are absolute yoghurt addicts at our house.  We eat it for breakfast, for dessert, and substitute it into recipes all the time with deliciously creamy results!

While living in Europe, I found myself preferring tubs of plain, unsweetened yoghurt.  This way I could decide just how much I want, and how I want to use.  As a savory substitute for sour cream, as the base for an improvised veggie dip, or sweetened with fresh fruit or homemade jam for dessert. 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Friday, May 15, 2015

Organics on the Go!





























I've got a little one at home, and having her eat plenty of healthy fruits and vegetables like the rest of the family is a huge priority.  And since her little body is so small and absorbing so much, we're extra careful about the quality of ingredients we use.  Little One eats organic as often as possible - homemade and without preservatives, dyes, or additives. 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Strawberry Coconut Milkshake

Strawberry Coconut Milkshake - AMAZING!  Gluten free

Something about warm mornings makes me crave a creamy smoothie filled with fresh fruits and veggies.  Its the perfect tasty start to a day, and with all the nutrients packed into one yummy glass - a day that starts with a smoothie is bound to be a good one!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Water Patio Plants Less Often with this Surprising Tip!

Water Patio Plants Less Often with this Surprising Tip!

This spring while planting the garden, I wanted to try out new ways to help keep my container flowers blooming throughout the heat of the summer.  That is, without me standing over them and watering them every day!

A high school chemistry teacher waaay back in the day had beakers of gel around the classroom with flowers growing out of them.  She explained to us that it was the same water-retaining material found in diapers...and period pads.  That little bit of trivia stayed with me and this spring it's found its way into my coir-lined hanging planters.  Here's more on this unexpected repurposing...feminine pads in the garden!

Monday, May 4, 2015

My New Roots

Seasonal, healthy eating and recipes
























Every once and awhile, you're cruising along in life and then the wind blows...a new view enters.  

That is what just happened to me with My New Roots - it shook up my world, in a good way.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Weeknight Chicken with Spinach

Healthy Weeknight Chicken with Spinach

A perfect weeknight meal for two!

This recipe is so, so simple, is inexpensive, and has the flavor of a much more elaborate dish.  Its a perfect healthy weeknight meal, and goes great served with rice.

Monday, April 20, 2015

5 Ideas for Gardening with Kids!

It is such a treat to grow up learning about and playing nature. 

Here are 5 fun ideas to get kids excited about the garden - and tricks to win yourself, busy Mom, a few minutes in the dirt!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Garden Tour: Studio City, California

What a gorgeous spring day, perfect for a walk around Studio City, California!

Charming white picket fence lined with climbing roses

This LA suburb is home to a cute cafe street, charming neighborhoods, CBS Studios, and if rumors are correct...the Big Brother House the exterior of the Brady Bunch house, Miley Cirus, Zac Effron, Bruno Mars, Eddie Van Halen, Alex Trebec, Sophia Vergara, William Shatner, Seth McFarlane and Ryan Gosling all call it home.

Monday, April 6, 2015

10 FRESH Springtime Garden Tips


There is nothing better this time of year than digging your fingers into the soil and watching as life sprouts out of it!

Here a collection of fresh gardening tips to help ring in the season:


    Thursday, April 2, 2015

    Asian Zucchini Slaw


    Refreshing, Simple BBQ Side!  Asian Zucchini Slaw
    The garden is filled with baby zucchini plants and I'm anxiously getting ready for summer zucchini season!  

    Monday, March 30, 2015

    The Healthy Mind Cookbook

    The Healthy Mind Cookbook - review by Lavende&Lemonade

    Did you know that eating broccoli can help boost verbal recall?  Or that avocado may keep depression at bay? 

    Thursday, March 26, 2015

    Why I'm NOT buying plants from Home Depot or Lowes

    This weekend I stopped at Home Depot to pick up a few supplies for our latest DIY adventure.  I wandered to the garden center with hopes of picking up a new lemon tree and maybe a few new flowers for the garden. 

    I was puzzled by a plastic label popping out of each of the plants.  "This plant is protected from problematic Aphids, White flies, Beetles, Mealy Bugs and other unwanted pests by Neonicotinoids."

    That name sounded familiar...and why did their choice of wording sound like such a hard-sell?  Like the waiter who comes asking 8 times if I'm really sure I don't want dessert.




    Monday, March 23, 2015

    Moroccan Chickpea and Vegetable Soup

    Healthy, simple, delicious all-year round! Moroccan Chickpea and Vegetable Soup

    Soups are great all year round, and this Moroccan Chickpea and Vegetable Soup is the perfect example of a soup that is crave-worthy in all the seasons.

    Monday, March 16, 2015

    Where Does Argan Oil Come From?

    Do you know where does Argan Oil come from? So interesting!
    Photo Source: (C) Direction du patrimoine culturel via UNESCO
    http://www.unesco.org/culture/ich/RL/00955

    Shopping with a friend a few months ago (I rarely venture into the cosmetics department...) I was surprised to see Argan Oil in nearly everything. At that time I'd not heard of this so-called "liquid gold" and my interest was peaked.



    Monday, March 9, 2015

    Whole Grain Apple Oatmeal Muffins



    You would never guess these muffins are so healthy!  
    The freshly shredded apple makes them incredibly moist and gives a gentle, sweet flavor that is perfect for breakfast, brunch, or a mid-day snack.  Plus, serving them in cupcake liners makes them feel like dessert!

    Monday, March 2, 2015

    French Almond Yogurt Cake with Pears

    French Almond Yogurt Cake with Pears - Recipe and Tutorial from Lavende & Lemonade



    It seems like every French home I've visited has some version of this quick, tasty recipe taped to the inside of a cupboard door.  This is a simple dessert that is perfect for making together with the kids because the measuring is so wonderfully simple.

    This version is topped with fresh pears, which adds a luxurious flavor and appearance to the cake.


    Monday, February 23, 2015

    Roasted Eggplant "Hummus" Dip

    Roasted Eggplant "Hummus" Dip

    Eggplant is such a versatile vegetable that often gets overlooked.  When it is baked, it gets a wonderfully creamy flavor.  

    This recipe for Roasted Eggplant "Hummus" is a variation on Baba Ganoush - a Middle Eastern eggplant dip.  It is delicious served with slices of crusty bread, Pita Chips, as a sandwich spread, or even mixed together with rice and vegetables.  


    Monday, February 16, 2015

    How to Dry Herbs - the simple way!


    The bright flavor of basil, the woody undertone of rosemary, the sophisticated zing of thyme - these are all part of the joys and benefits of growing an herb garden!

    Monday, February 9, 2015

    Its A Good Food Day!

    Its always a great day for good food, and that is exactly the concept behind Marco Canora's A Good Food Day!

    Its A Good Food Day!

    Wednesday, February 4, 2015

    Dark Berry Chia Smoothie


    Chia seeds are everywhere these days, which is fantastic news for our health!  They're a natural source of Omega-3 Fatty Acids which have amazing health benefits like improving arthritis symptoms, helping with depression, and aiding in the development of childrens' brain development.  They're also full of vegan protein, amino acids, fiber, calcium and plenty of other great vitamins.


    Dark Berry Chia Smoothie - a refreshing burst of antioxidants!

    Monday, January 19, 2015

    In Her Kitchen: Stories and Recipes from Grandmas Around the World

    In Her Kitchen: Stories and Recipes from Grandmas Around the World

    There is something so appealing about taking a glimpse inside people's lives and homes.  It must be larger than my own inner Peeking Tom, or else how could we explain the guilty pleasure of the Real Housewives and other 'reality' shows?  

    In Her Kitchen, Stories and Recipes from Grandmas Around the World is a lovely book that gives us an exciting peek into homes and kitchens of all types.  The author, the sweet and humble Italian Gabriele Calimberti takes us on a couch-surfing world tour and documents the whole culinary trip for her own grandmother.  The result is this wonderfully quirky collection of photos and recipes.

    Monday, January 12, 2015

    Hearty Vegetarian Chili



    The best chili recipe - and its meatless!  Recipe and Tutorial on Lavende & Lemonade


    This delicious Fall chili is so hearty that nobody even notices that it is meatless!  Perfect for football season, crisp fall days, or a warm meal after a long afternoon of playing in the leaves.


    Tuesday, December 30, 2014

    Sunday Suppers


    Sunday Suppers is the type of book that you keep on your coffee table or kitchen counter just to make the room feel cozy - and a source for spontaneous inspiration.  It’s linen cover is charmingly quaint and inviting, and surprisingly decorative for a cookbook!

    Monday, December 22, 2014

    Cut your Water Bill with this Simple Trick


    Water comes so easily out of the faucet that it’s easy to take it for granted!  Just think of how much more careful we’d be with each drop if we had to walk to the nearest well or river to collect it.

    There is a lot of water that goes down our kitchen drains that is barely even touched, if at all.  Think about the water used while we’re washing vegetables.  Or when we rinse something sticky of our fingers.  If we catch that water, it is perfect for the garden!  

    Tuesday, December 16, 2014

    Chewy Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

    The most amazingly addictive Chewy Chocolate - Chocolate Chip Cookies.



    We love our fruits and vegetables at our house, but that doesn't mean that we don't enjoy a nice chocolate indulgence from time to time!  These chewy, fudgey cookies are the perfect chocolate fix.  They're perfect for cookie exchanges, as homemade gifts for Valentines day and Christmas, and of course for dessert!  

    Monday, December 15, 2014

    Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream





    We became absolutely addicted to Green Tea Ice Cream while living in Asia, and I'm thrilled to share with you this recipe to make it at home!

    Making green tea ice cream at home couldn't be simpler!  It is so delicious - the perfect ending to a heavy meal - and is filled with all the great health benefits of Matcha Green Tea like:

    Thursday, December 11, 2014

    How to Plant An Organic Lawn - The Series Begins



    Planting an Organic Lawn - Series Begins - Lavende&Lemonade


    So this picture might not look like much...but I literally jumped for joy right before I took it.  After a year of having the worst yard in the neighborhood, we've now been skyrocketed into the top tier!  The "event" in this photo was a major turning point, one that was months in the making!

    Now that I'm confident in the results - I'd hate to steer anyone in the wrong direction - I'll be writing about the steps we took to get here and the lessons we learned along the way.

    Monday, December 8, 2014

    Holiday Roasted Olive & Tomato Chicken



    Growing up, decorating the Christmas tree was always a VERY big deal in our family.  Each year at the beginning of December we'd spend hours wandering through the fields at our local Christmas Tree farm searching for the Perfect Tree.  It had to be just the right shape, evenly leaved without brown patches, and most importantly...GIANT.  At least in our little eyes.


    Tuesday, December 2, 2014

    Cheesy French Dill Omelette




    The Holiday season is filled with occasions to come together, for long weekends and vacations with friends and family.  We were excited to host a French friend who came to stay with us this past weekend, and each morning we all came together at the table to share breakfast and start the day.

    Monday, December 1, 2014

    A Christmas Carol: The Ghost of our Planet's Future

    We all remember the part in A Christmas Carol when Scrooge is taken by The Ghost of Christmas Future.  Scrooge is taken into the future and catches a glimpse of the grim life that will come to be if he does not change his attitude and behavior today.

    I’ve just taken a trip with the Ghost of the Future and I am ready to shout from the rooftops that we must, without question, take action to avoid that fate.
    Beautiful afternoon for a picnic!  The future of air quality
    Lovely afternoon for a picnic...

    Monday, November 17, 2014

    The New American Herbal: Braised Chicken with Tarragon

    Braised Chicken with Tarragon, from The New American Herbal

    I'm almost embarrassed to admit it, given how many magazines these days are featuring tarragon...I've never tasted it!  When did Tarragon become the little black dress of the culinary world and how did I miss it?

    Monday, November 10, 2014

    Make Organic Fertilizer at Home Using Whey




    When making cheese at home, the curds go to the cheese itself and the whey is leftover.  But as it is so full of nutrients that it is a shame to lose it down the drain.

    This organic homemade fertilizer is a great use for the whey, which helps nourish the garden as a natural, DIY organic plant food.

    Monday, November 3, 2014

    French Farmhouse Soup



    Farmhouse Soup is a classic French blended soup that is overflowing with clean-eating goodness and healthy nutrients.  It is a warm, cozy bowl of satisfying vegetables.  

    How to make homemade Almond Milk


    Almond milk has always intrigued me.  How do these dry little nuts turn into a creamy drink? It is simple, actually!  Turning a handful of almonds into a bottle of healthy milky goodness takes just a few minutes with this recipe.

    Thursday, October 30, 2014

    the kitchn: short on vowels, big on kitchen goodness

    the ktchn: short on vowels, big on kitchen goodness!


    The kitchn is charmingly missing vowels in its title, but is filled with fantastic content for the home & food crowd!


    This reference is a combination of kitchen remodeling inspiration, recipes, and introduction to cooking techniques. There is something about spending a few minutes in someone's kitchen that builds a connection - even if it is only on the page - and the kitchn does just that by giving a personal introduction to its contributors and their kitchens. This gives the book a very personal, intimate feel that is very pleasant!  

    Monday, October 27, 2014

    French Financier Almond Pastries

    Amazingly Delicious! French Financier Almond Cakes by Lavende & Lemonade


    These light, airy French Financier pastries are a delight.  Financiers are traditional French bite-sized cookies that have a texture reminiscent of sponge cake but with a hint of almond.  The name is said to come from the fact that they look like adorably delicious little bars of French pastry gold when they come out of the oven.

    Financiers are the perfect afternoon tea snack, or really...the perfect anytime snack because they're so good!  I like to eat them on weekend mornings, dunked into a warm Cafe Latte.



    Monday, October 20, 2014

    Spirulina Broccolini: Recipe for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

    Spirulina Broccolini: Recipe for Breast Cancer Awareness & Prevention Month

    When it comes to Breast Cancer prevention, every step we can take is worthwhile!

    Research is being done on hundreds of fronts about what might help to prevent or cure breast cancer, and one that is showing definite promise is the addition of sea vegetables to our diets.  

    Tuesday, October 14, 2014

    Herbs, Herbs, Herbs



    The New American Herbal is a beautiful reference for beginning kitchen gardeners, or for established gardeners looking to learn more about what could be growing.  As an amateur herb gardener and full-fledged foodie, this guide made me a very happy reader!

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