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Dangerously Delicious Thursdays

So it's Thursday, and around here that means we are already looking forward to the weekend. And inevitably my kids asking if we will be doing anything. Well when you have 6 kids "something" is inevitable. And given the time of year, it's football and soccer. Although this weekend marks the end of both, with the fall in temperatures that ending makes me a bit happy, but a bit nostalgic knowing how time marches on and another season in life has passed. The days are long, but the years are quick. My oldest is the football player, except he got a concussion the 3rd week of the season and hasn't played another game. But there is a chance he may play in the final game Saturday (JV) if he passed his impact test last night. That would certainly bring a bit more joy back into all the time spent running him back and forth to the games!

A huge part of our weekends is the amount of food consumed by all the children. It's like all they think about. From the hour of waking till after midnight. And my kids are eaters, like they could each eat their weight in food daily, kind of eaters. Or just finished dinner and "What else can we eat now?" kind of eaters.

So maybe it's the same at your house, which led me to bringing you some new foods to incorporate into your weekend for ya know, in between all of the snacking.

I have 2 recipes for you today, the first wasn't planned but I just couldn't keep it from you as I am sitting here sipping away. You might be inclined to think of a warm frothy drink, but nope, it's a smoothie. A Purple Passion Smoothie by name, but mine leans towards green with my veggie obsession. (To clarify, I do like vegetables, but being a sweet tooth gal by nature I am always thrilled when I can blend them into something that is more sweet than savory.) It took time, but I have developed a taste for savory, quite a feat for a girl who did not like vegetables at all and considered cereal the best meal ever. Now I work very hard to keep balance, mostly because I have seen what a huge difference vegetables and greens make in my health, and the detrimental impact of cereal. Alright, on to the smoothie recipe!

This week grapes were on super sale at my local grocer Giant Eagle, with organic red grapes being only $1.25 a pound. Their normal price is $5.99 a pound so you can see what a great deal it was. They looked good so I bought 3 packs...yesterday. One was gone by nightfall (grapes are my older daughter's favorite fruit) and school lunches this morning along with a snack for the 2 year old started to deplete the 2nd container so I figured I better get my smoothie on this morning or miss out. This recipe is from the book Clean Skin from Within, by Dr. Trevor Cates where there are quite a few recipes in the back of the book to help jump start your journey to clearer skin. You can get the book here. This smoothie is packed with antioxidants, great for keeping the immune system powered up this time of year. Also antioxidants are fabulous for their skin anti-aging properties and ability to help stop hyperpigmentation or age spots on skin.

Purple Passion Smoothie

1 cup unsweetened rice, almond, or coconut milk (I use Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk)

1/2 cup frozen organic strawberries

1/2 cup frozen organic blueberries

1/2 cup organic spinach, fresh or frozen

1/4 cup seedless red or purple grapes organic if possible

1 scoop of protein powder of your choice.

Simply combine all the ingredients and blend until smooth.

I like to add a 1/2 teaspoon of both spirulina and chlorella along with a 1/2 scoop of my favorite Supergreens powder found here to power up even more Spirulina and chlorella are superfoods that are nutrient powerhouses, plus they work synergistically to detox the body, and aid in eliminating candida in the gut. Fabulous for skin and body. Thus the reason mine is more green.

So, now that you too can enjoy a tall glass of awesomeness, let's move on the comfort food, since this time of year here in PA most of us are still spending plenty of time outdoors but love to come inside to a dish that warms us from the inside out. This particular recipe features another fall favorite, spaghetti squash. I just tried this squash maybe 2 or 3 years ago, and boy, was I missing out! It's interior really is like strands of spaghetti, fun!, and for gluten free folks makes a pretty good healthy noodle substitute, because, let's be real, gf noodles, well...if you must. Spaghetti squash is high in Vitamins A and C plus fiber. Vitamin A helps keep the skin firm and tight, and Vitamin C is essential for collagen to do its job keeping the skin smooth and wrinkle free. This recipe is also featured in the Clean Skin From Within book available here.

Pesto Spaghetti Squash

yields 2 to 4 servings depending on size of squash

For Squash

1 medium to large spaghetti squash

2 tablespoons of oil, avocado or refined coconut


1/4 cup water

Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, drizzle with oil (avocado oil withstands heat well) and then throw it in the oven at 375F for 30 - 40 minutes, or until soft and the strands easily separate. Or toss the halves into an instant pot with a 1/4 cup of water for 15 minutes. When cool enough to handle, scrape sides of squash with fork to remove strands then place into a large bowl.

For Pesto

2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves

1/2 cup pine nuts

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 clove of garlic (or more to taste)

1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt or Celtic sea salt (or more to taste)

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process into a smooth paste. Season with salt.

Toss squash with pesto and serve.

This recipe makes a nice light lunch and can be embellished with toasted pine nuts, almond slivers or sprouted sunflower seeds, even non-GMO uncured bacon, fully cooked and chopped into pieces.

If you try them this weekend comment below with what you thought.

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