Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Wordless Wednesday- Sesame Place

Sesame Place is located in Bucks County , Pennsylvania 
about 1/2 hour from Philadelphia and 2 hours from NYC
The fall flowers and decorations are beautiful..

Monday, September 25, 2017

Lentil, Leek, and Potato Soup

Lentils, leeks, and potatoes are the key players in this tasty autumn soup
which is both naturally gluten free and vegan.

Vegan Lentil Soup

Although the warm weather is refusing to leave, it is the end of September, and it is officially fall!

With s few of the evenings feeling a tad nippy,  I've started to dream about soup!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Waldorf Kale Salad with an Apple and Honey Citrus Dressing

This beautiful kale Waldorf super salad brings together apples and honey just in time for Rosh Hashanah- the Jewish New Year!

Kale is still plentiful and local apples are just beginning to show their faces in the farmer's markets ( I live in Pennsylvania) .

On Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year which begins Wednesday evening through Friday evening, it is traditional to dip apples in honey to welcome in a sweet new year. In addition, we keep our menus on the sweet side serving sweet kugels, sweet potato tzimmis, apple cakes, etc.

This year I decided to serve a salad recipe for our celebration dinner that incorporates our holiday theme. I've added chopped apples, walnuts, sunflower seeds, raisins, dried cranberries, grated carrots, and celery to curly fall kale and dressed it with my slightly sweet apple and honey citrus dressing.

salad dressing, vegan, gluten-free, Rosh Hashanah
                                        sweet apple and honey citrus dressing.

Holiday recipes are notorious for depending on rich heavy ingredients that although tasty, are caloric and not so healthy. My super salad is delicious, festive, and brings a balance of tradition and nutrition to the holiday table.

Kale is rich in nutrients, helps the body detoxify, and gives the salad a base.
The carrots, celery, and apple add flavor and crunch, while the nuts and seeds add some protein and healthy fat.

This is a holiday recipe you can enjoy and still feel good serving it at Rosh Hashanah or any


2 cups of chopped kale ( de ribbed) 
2 cups of grated carrot
1/2 cup of chopped celery
1 cup of chopped organic apple ( with skin)
1/2 cup of organic raisins or dried cranberries or both
1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
1/4 cup of raw sunflower seeds


In a large bowl mix all ingredients and toss well in  honey citrus dressing.

Shared on Beth Fish Reads Weekend Cooking where anyone can share a food related post. 

and also on Deb's Souper Sunday where anyone can share a soup, salad, or sammie recipe

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Apple and Honey Citrus Dressing for Rosh Hashanah

How sweet it is to dip apples into honey in celebration of Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year). 

This year I expanded the traditional custom by also making a special apple and honey salad dressing to dress our salad at our Rosh Hashanah holiday dinner. 

After a few interesting attempts, I was delighted with the outcome of this oil-free, gluten-free, vegetarian dressing.  The dressing is sweet, yet tangy and tastes amazing on my fabulous (link to recipes) Israeli dried apricot and carrot salad  , mango coleslaw, Kohlrabi and carrot slaw, shredded carrot salad, Waldorf salad or even a fruit salad. 

It looks creamy and delicious with just a hint of red specks from the apple. 
Since I use organic apples, I leave on the skin and even use the seeds ( which are good for you) . 

Why Apples Must Be Organic
Apples are one of the fruits on the dirty dozen list published each year from EWG which lists fruits and vegetables that contain the highest concentration of pesticides. 

Since apples are one of the fruits that contain the highest amount of pesticides, I always buy organic. I can usually pick up a 3 pound bag that runs about $1.99 pound- or a bag at Trader Joes which is usually  even more reasonable. 

I will be serving this dressing tonight for our Rosh Hashanah holiday meal on my delicious Kale Super Salad. 

If you are looking for vegan or vegetarian and gluten free Jewish holiday ideas see my previous Rosh Hashanah round ups! 

I've converted some traditional foods such as (link) vegan chopped liver, vegetarian gluten free matzo balls, vegetarian 1 hour gluten free challah, and vegan un-chicken soup. 

This Incredible Salad Dressing Recipe


Juice of one large organic lime or lemon
1 large organic apple, cored and diced 
1 heaping tablespoon of raw honey (vegans substitute maple syrup)1 organic red apple, sliced
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
optional: 1/2 teaspoon of zest from an organic lime


Using a Vitamix or other very strong blender, whiz all ingredients together until well mixed and perfectly smooth. Serve on carrot salad, fruit salad, or as the dressing on a Waldorf salad.

My Notes: 
This dressing will last in the refrigerator for 5 days and still taste great!!

Monday, September 18, 2017

More Ways To Reduce Your Risk of Cancer

"The scientific evidence today demonstrates that cell phones cause cancer — namely, glioblastoma or acoustic neuroma brain tumor and a host of other biological effects." taken from The Cell Phone Radiation Lawyers website- 

photos  from Wikimedia Commons

Cancer study of cell phone use and radio-frequency energy effect on human body (Brain). © Wikimedia Commons

More and more studies are indicating that cell phone, Wifi, and cordless phone do increase the risk factor when it comes to cancer. 

Don't Be Casual About Cell Phone and Cordless Phone Use

Because we are not being warned on a continuous basis and the affects are long term, we treat cell phone use casually when we should be concerned about their use.

Meanwhile the use of cell phones and exposure to WIFI just keeps increasing in both adults and children. Do we need to wait for more and more research to catch up to inform us of the indicated dangers like we did with cigarettes? 

It's best to reduce your exposure to any kind of radiation now. 

Consumer Reports are suggesting these simple things you can do to reduce your exposure: 

Suggestions from Consumer Reports:

1. Do not keep phone near head and body. Distance makes a difference.

2. When phone signals are weak , phone may need to increase their power to adjust- this puts the consumer at higher risk- This can happen in moving vehicles when you are moving closer and farther from towers like in a moving car or train. 

3. Text instead of talking whenever possible

4. Use speaker phone or hands free headset

5. Do not store the phone in pants, shirt or bra- better to keep it in a bag or off your body.  

Chris Wark from Chris Beat Cancer suggests: 

1. Turn off your Wifi when you sleep at night otherwise it is in continuous interaction with the towers and so are you!

2. Do not keep your cell phone near your head when you sleep ( nightstand) 

3. Put your electronics on airplane mode when on your body or purse during the day and at night when you sleep.

Know any good articles, have comments or suggestions? 
Post them in the comments!

Friday, September 15, 2017

Vegetarian Stuffed Mushrooms with Spinach and Parmesan Cheese

Are you looking for an easy appetizer that is sure to dazzle your guests? Vegetarian stuffed mushrooms taste delicious and look spectacular.
Yet, they are very easy to make and are the perfect finger food for any occasion.

With so many allergy concerns in the general population, it is sometimes difficult to find an appetizer that all guests can eat. 

These special treats are gluten free, egg free, nut free, and can be made dairy free if you use vegan cheese which is available in most natural food markets.

Make this tasty recipe in four easy steps. 
  1. First, wash and pat dry your mushrooms
  2. Second, remove stems and lightly scoop out with a spoon
  3. Third, stuff the cavity with the gluten free stuffing.
  4. Sautee the large mushroom in butter or olive oil to soften slightly


stuffing for stuffed mushrooms

The stuffing recipe calls for only three vegetables -

  • spinach
  • mushrooms
  • onions
plus some grated parmesan/ Romano cheese. I use BelGioioso ( supermarket) from Wisconsin  because it is made from the milk of cows that are free of rbst, is labeled gluten free, is  reasonably priced,  and I think tastes the best of any I've tasted.

Since the vegetables are quickly sauteed prior to stuffing the mushrooms,  there is no need to do anything but heat the mushrooms before serving.

If you like raw mushrooms like I do , you can even serve the mushroom shell raw.- your choice whether to heat them or not! If you do sautee them or heat them , they will cook in 5 minutes.
Heat just before serving. However, leftovers will serve up well too. 

Author: Judee Algazi @gluten Free A-Z Blog

12 medium or large whole mushrooms, wiped clean
1 and half cups of chopped frozen spinach, thaw and squeeze out liquid
1 cup of diced onion
1 cup of chopped mushrooms ( I used the scaped stems and scooping from the mushrooms)
1/2 cup of grated (not powdered) parmesan cheese

Spray a large skillet with olive oil spray. Saute the onions and mushroom pieces until onions are translucent. Add the squeezed out chopped spinach spray with more olive oil spray and continue to saute to heat the mixture . Remove from skillet and stuff the mushrooms with the mixture . Top each mushroom with the grated cheese.

Serve the mushrooms raw or sautee in the skillet in olive oil or butter for one minute covered. If using butter be careful not to burn it.

My Notes: 

  1. I will be serving these gluten free beauties at my vegetarian luncheon the 1st day of the Rosh Hashanah holiday.( Jewish holidays always begin at sundown the night before. So, I will have a dinner the first night and a lunch the next day which is the first day! The 2nd night we are invited to relatives for dinner.
  2. Buy whole medium or large mushrooms 
  3. If you use the large mushrooms, you can cut them in half when serving

These flowers are from my garden! 

white hydrangeas in a crystal vase

Friday, September 15, 2017

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Corn , Cilantro, and Cucumber Salad with Creamy Lime Dressing

The farmer's markets are overflowing with fresh corn, and it is time to make my delicious triple C salad.

 I cut the kernels off the cob ( uncooked) and eat them raw.  The tender milky kernels are sweet, crunchy and delicious making them a welcome addition to salads.

In the past, I've made flavorful salads using ripe Jersey summer tomatoes, fresh corn, and summer basil. This time I wanted to mix it up and try some other salad fixings.

I found that crisp Kirby cucumbers,  cilantro, and seasonal corn taste delightful tossed in a creamy citrus dressing. This salad takes only minutes to make and goes well with most entrees.

** Please note: Some people do not like the taste of cilantro- if that is the case substitute parsley.

Although the key ingredients in this salad all start with the letter "C"  ( corn, cilantro, and cucumber),  I did break up the pattern by adding some sweet red onion and some lovely black olives.

The combination of ingredients makes a beautiful presentation, and I love the contrast of the colors and tastes. Like all my recipes, my salad is naturally gluten free and this one is vegan.

So if you are looking for something for additional ways to enjoy summer corn, this light vegan salad might be just what you are looking for. You can eat your corn without heating up the house.

                              I made a video demonstrating the making of the salad

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Wordless Wednesday-Wild Mushrooms

I was taking a walk and saw these huge wild mushrooms.. 
I've never seen any so large . They were just in someone's garden!!

This is another batch of musrooms

               Since I was tuned into mushrooms, I decided to pair this post with a mushroom soup!

                This is one of our favorite mushroom soups

                                Mushroom Bisque

Shared on Wordless Wednesday at Beth Fish Reads Wordless Wednesday blog carnivals:
  Wordless Wed on Tuesdays wordless on tuesday http://thesimpleyear.com/, image in ing, ClaireJustine linky  and Saturday snapshot hosted by West Metro Mommy  Create with Joy bethere2day nanahood

Friday, September 8, 2017

Stone Soup Is An Old Family Favorite

Do you remember the children's story, Stone Soup

It was one of my favorite stories when I was a kid. 

It is about some hungry travelers who come to a village with only a soup pot and some stones. 

They fill the pot with water and the stones and make a fire. 

As passer byers looked into the pot, they ask the travelers what they are making. 

The travelers entic the villagers with tales of an extraordinarily delicious stone soup that they would be willing to share if only they had the right ingredient. 

The travelers tell the first person that the soup would be perfect if only he had some carrots. 

And then they repeat the story to the next passer byers saying if only he had some celery, and then to the next neighbor if only he had some parsley , and to the next neighbor if only he had a potato or an onion.

Each person gives the clever travelers the "one ingredient" that is missing to make this mysterious stone soup. The characters continue collecting ingredients from all the neighbors until they have enough to make a flavorful big pot of stone soup to eat.

The travelers only contribution to this soup was the pot and the stones.

Although I didn't use any stones, this recipe reminds me of the stone soup story.

I did not go shopping for any ingredients, and I did not have a recipe to follow. I simply used what vegetables I could find lurking in my fridge.

Easy, Frugal, and Healthy

 I found one potato, a large carrot, some fresh green flat parsley, some red peppers, some cabbage, onions, zucchini, garlic and fresh sage to make this vegan and naturally gluten free soup. To give it a little more depth, I added a can of cooked beans.

Since I only used whatever I had, I was surprised that the soup was very tasty. It turned out be an pleasing vegetable soup that was quick and easy.

Don't Forget to Add This
My favorite addition to the soup was a half uneaten jar of sauerkraut that was lingering in the fridge. I remembered that my mother used to make a sweet and sour soup using sauerkraut. Sounds a little strange, but it added some interesting flavor. If you like sauerkraut, make sure to add it to your bowl. If not, add fresh lemon juice.

It's Now Officially Soup Weather 
As far as I'm concerned once the temperatures get into the fifties like it is today, it is now officially soup weather!

Have you begun to make soup yet? Do you make soup in the summer? What are you making? 

Author: Judee Algazi
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Serves: 8 

1 or 2 medium potatoes
2 carrots, sliced
1 cup of parsley, chopped
1 red pepper, diced
1 medium to large zucchini diced
5 leaves of sage
3 cups of cabbage, chopped ( green or purple)
1 onion, sliced
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and halved
8 cups of water
4 cups of vegetable broth
1 and half cups of cooked beans ( white or kidney)
Himalayan salt and pepper to taste
Sauerkraut to add to each bowl ( 1/4 cup for each bowl)
or a squeeze of lemon juice in each bowl
2 teaspoons of olive oil or olive oil spray


Sautee the onion and garlic in some olive oil spray or a little olive oil. When translucent, add the carrots, red pepper, red cabbage, potato, and zucchini. Mix well and then add the water and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil for 5 minutes and then simmer about 30 minutes covered until vegetables are soft. Add a drop of lemon juice to each bowl.

My Notes: 
1. If you have leftover soup and the liquid is absorbed the next day, add more broth and reheat.

This recipe will be shared Sunday on Souper Sunday at Kahakai Kitchen where you can link up soup, salad, or sammie recipes...

Also will be shared on Friday on Weekend Cooking open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Wordless Wednesday Sculpture Garden

Wordless Wednesday- Grounds for Sculpture 
in Hamilton, New Jersey

Grounds For Sculpture is a 42-acre sculpture park and museum located in Hamilton, NJ, United States, on the former site of the New Jersey State Fairgrounds. Wikipedia

The grounds are beautiful with lots of landscaping and water. 
There is also a place to eat called Ratz ( a little pricy) I like their happy hours.

My husband fraternizing with the sculptures

Marilyn Monroe

Forever Marilyn 
In 2014 The Grounds for Sculpture held a retrospective exhibit that honored  Seward Johnson.
The statue ,"Forever Marilyn," was brought from Palm Springs California to the Grounds for Sculpture
where this magnificent sculpture remained for 1 year. 

 UntappedCities.com described Grounds for Sculpture as 
an "Impressionist Oasis in New Jersey", 

check out this Full Slide Show of Photos
Shared on Wordless Wednesday at Beth Fish Reads Wordless Wednesday blog carnivals:
  Wordless Wed on Tuesdays wordless on tuesday http://thesimpleyear.com/, image in ing, ClaireJustine linky  and Saturday snapshot hosted by West Metro Mommy  Create with Joy bethere2day nanahood