Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Fruit 101: A Brief Guide to the Fruit Food Group

May 27, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

You know the common ones: apples, bananas, oranges, and a few others. But what else qualifies as a fruit? There are a few things about the fruit group that might surprise you! Here are a few interesting facts about fruit from the USDA's Choose My Plate site:

All forms of fruit count as a serving.
While fresh fruits are the most beneficial, dried fruits, fruit purees, 100% fruit juices, frozen fruits, and canned fruits also count toward your recommended daily intake.

The amount you need per day varies from person to person.
Though you might have learned that you need a certain amount of fruits per day, that number is actually different for everyone. Children up to age eight only need 1 to 1 1/2 cups of fruit, while adults need somewhere between 1 1/2 to 2 cups.

In-season fruits may be less expensive.
While buying fresh produce can get expensive, there are a few tips and tricks to help you save money at the grocery store. For example, when fruits are in-season, they are usually less expensive (and more flavorful!).

Different fruits offer different health benefits.
Though eating an apple every day is good for you, it’s better to switch things up in order to get the full benefits that each fruit has to offer.

What Foods are in the Fruit Group? [USDA]

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Make Quiche at Home with These Recipe Websites

April 22, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Enjoy eating quiche but not in the habit of making it in your kitchen at home at Hatfield Village Apartments? Here are two informative websites that can show you how to make a tasty quiche even if you aren’t a professional chef.

AllRecipes
The AllRecipes.com breakfast quiche section has recipes including both sweet and savory options, and just about all of them look delightful. The Tomato and Basil Quiche might add a bit of Italian cuisine flavor to your next brunch. It pairs perfectly with a mixed green salad. The Ham and Cheese Breakfast Quiche is a more kid-friendly version, perfect for serving with fresh fruit and a glass of juice.

MarthaStewart.com
For more unique quiche recipes perfect for weekend brunch gatherings, Martha Stewart’s beautiful website is a great place to look. The site's Broccoli Cheddar Quiche boasts cheesy flavors, while the Shallot Mushroom Quiche uses Fontina cheese and caramelized shallots for a sophisticated taste. Though these may seem like gourmet creations, the recipes include detailed, simple-to-follow instructions.

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Bake Bread at Home With these Recipe Sites

March 25, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

There’s something so satisfying about bread, whether it’s a crispy piece of toast with jam, a light, fluffy roll dipped in your favorite soup, or a crunchy crostini with goat cheese spread. If you want to make gourmet-quality breads from the comfort of your own kitchen, these step-by-step recipe websites will help you do just that.

Cooking Light
The Cooking Light website aims to make eating bread a bit more healthier, but just as delicious. Its Healthy Baking Guide features a list of the 30 Best Quick Bread Recipes, perfect for the busy home cook or the amateur chef. These breads are leavened with baking powder or baking soda instead of yeast, which makes their cooking times shorter and more manageable. From flaky buttermilk biscuits to zucchini-pineapple quick bread, you’ll find an abundance of fast and easy bread recipes on this unique list.

Better Homes and Gardens
Better Homes and Gardens magazine has published a lot of bread recipes over the years, but this is a list of their very favorite loaves. From Semolina and Rosemary Boule to Two-Tone Banana Bread to Whole Grain Sunflower Bread, these not-so-average breads are all delicious in their own unique ways.

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Improve Your Health in Five Minutes

February 25, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Running a mile or cooking a nutritious meal require a chunk of time, but there are a number of other things you can do to improve your health that take fewer than five minutes. These simple tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can help you feel safer and healthier:

  • Wash your hands, and not just before meals. It only takes 20 seconds!
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator – it only takes about 2 minutes per flight.
  • Schedule a doctor’s appointment, whether it’s for a check up or to look into that pesky pain. You can call them on the phone in 2 minutes without even leaving the house.
  • Put on a helmet any time you ride a bike! This quick tip can help save your life in the case of a fall.

You can find more of these tips at the CDC's website!

Five Minutes for Health [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention]

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Create Something Great with These DIY Blogs

February 25, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

DIY-ers know that there’s no shortage of online instructional videos and websites showing you how to make everything from a bed made of wood palettes to your own beaded jewelry. If you’re a crafty girl or guy who loves to build things from scratch, these two creative websites are full of ideas to get your gears turning.

Pretty Handy Girl
Though the name implies that it’s a site for females, Pretty Handy Girl is full of ideas that all types of people will love. From complex home renovation projects to simple arts and crafts ideas, this site will help you make your house look as chic and stylish as a page in a magazine. It also features a peek inside the blogger's toolbox, helping beginning DIY enthusiasts learn which tools are necessary for just about any project.

Makezine
Makezine is a complete online resource for all things DIY, from project instructions and tutorials to meet-ups with other makers in your area. The main page offers interesting articles about incredible projects that other people have made, as well as the latest news from the DIY world. There’s also a database full of how-to guides, video tutorials, and even categories dividing projects by various subjects. Whether you’re a recreational DIY-er or an amateur inventor, Makezine has something for everyone. 

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Happy Presidents’ Day

February 17, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Remembering the courage and vision of past and present leaders, we honor and share the spirit of Presidents' Day together as a nation.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

February 14, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Wishing everyone a day filled with fun and happy memories!

Breakfast Grilled Cheese

February 11, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Ingredients:
1/3 cup whipped cream cheese
1/4 cup small-curd cottage cheese
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, plus more for topping
4 frozen waffles (untoasted)
1 to 2 tablespoons jam (any flavor)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, plus more if needed
Ground cinnamon, for topping

Directions:
-Mix the cream cheese, cottage cheese and confectioners' sugar in a medium bowl. Spread 2 waffles with the jam, then top with the cream cheese mixture; cover with the remaining 2 waffles.

-Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sandwiches and cook until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes per side, adding more butter to the pan if needed. (Adjust the heat if the waffles are browning too quickly.)

-Let the sandwiches rest 1 minute before serving. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar and cinnamon.

www.pinterest.com
www.ziplist.com

Skinny Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

February 8, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Ingredients:
2 Tbsp honey
1/4 cup agave nectar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large bananas, mashed
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
6 oz Vanilla Greek Yogurt
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate morsels

Instructions:
In a large mixing bowl, beat honey, agave nectar, egg, vanilla, and banana until blended. Add flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and yogurt. Beat for 1-2 minutes until fully combined. Fold in chocolate morsels.

Grease cupcake tin with nonstick baking spray. Spoon batter into each tin (about 1/4 cup). Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 18-20 minutes. For mini muffins, bake 11-13 minutes. Remove and cool on wire rack. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for later use. ENJOY.
**For mini muffins, recipe makes about 36 muffins.

www.pinterest.com
www.sugarysweets.com

Strawberry Avocado Kale Salad with Bacon Poppyseed Dressing

February 7, 2014 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Yield: 2 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:
-6 cups of baby kale (pre-washed kind)
-2 cups sliced strawberries
-1 ripe avocado, sliced

Dressing:
-4 slices bacon
-1/2 cup mayonnaise
-2 tablespoons sugar
-2 tablespoons white vinegar
-1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds
-salt & pepper, to taste

Directions:
Place kale, strawberries, and avocado into a large bowl and set aside.

For the dressing, cook bacon until crisp. Remove from pan and drain bacon on paper towels. Crumble into small pieces and whisk together with remaining ingredients. Drizzle over salad and serve.

www.pinterest.com
www.laurenslatest.com

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