Monthly Archives: May 2014

Hearty Homemade Vegan Pizza Slices

Honestly, when doesn’t pizza sound good?? I love making pizza at home because it can actually be quite healthy and just as satisfying! This past weekend I made a vegan pizza that is SO packed with flavor you don’t even have to be a health nut to enjoy it šŸ˜‰

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I started by making a whole wheat crust. I was out of honey so I proofed the yeast with 100% pure maple syrup-which ended up imparting the most amazing maple flavor in the crust. If you aren’t familiar with the bread making process, proofing the yeast just means mixing a packet of active dry yeast (found in the baking aisle of your local grocery store) with about 1/2 C warm water and some type of sugar to activate the yeast and allow it to expand. I usually use about 1 tablespoon of honey, but this time I substituted maple syrup. I whisk everything togetherĀ in a small bowl using a fork. Tip: Sometimes it helps to use 2 packets of yeast when working with 100% whole wheat flour. This will make your bread fluffier, as wheat products canĀ be very dense and heavy.

In a separate, large mixing bowl I mixed 1 C whole wheat flour with 2 tablespoons ground flax, 1/4 C oats, and 1 tsp salt. Next I poured in about 3/4 C warm water then gradually stirred in an additional cup of wheat flour. If the dough is sticky you may need to keep adding flour, if it is dry then use less flour. I kneaded the dough, then flattened it out on a stone baking pan and let it rise for about an hour covered with a clean kitchen towel.

Bake the crust for about 15 minutes @ 400 degrees F. You may also prefer to pre-roast some of your veggie toppings. Once the crust was cooked, I let it cool on the counter for about an hour before spreading the top with Mediterranean herb hummus, sliced red and orange heirloom tomatoes, yellow squash, zucchini, diced garlic, fresh cilantro, a squeeze of lemon juice, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Pop the pizza back in the oven at 325 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Let cool, slice, and enjoy!

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Let’s Talk About Pasta

IMG_2375For many people watching their weight, carb-ridden pasta is a taboo menu item. But the good news is a nice bowl of spaghetti doesn’t have to be the villain. As I said in my most recent post, one of my goals this summer is to plan meals ahead of time so that I have something healthy to grab in a hurry. This week I boiled some whole wheat pasta (took a mere 7 minutes!!) and froze individual portion sizes in tupperware containers.

The problem with pasta and the reason it can cause some people to gain weight is that peopleIMG_2381 often unknowingly consume 3-5 times the serving size in one sitting! A serving of pasta is 1/2 cup cooked. Do you know how much that is? Go get a measuring cup from your kitchen right now! See? It’s tiny! How are you supposed to be satisfied with such a small portion? The trick is to pump up the volume (and nutritional value) without the excessive carbs and calories. Mix in unlimited chopped veggies- some of my favorites are zucchini, yellow squash, tomato (try orange or yellow for something different!), any color bell pepper, mushrooms, olives, or spinach.

Here I mixed 2 tablespoons of pesto into about 1/3 of the box of spaghetti after boiling and draining the noodles. Instead of parmesan cheese I mixed in nutritional yeast, which has a similar cheesy flavor, but without the fat and sodium. It is also a great source of protein, as it contains many essential amino acids, and B-vitamins, including B12.

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Yes, that is a glass mixing bowl…. I am a college student.

Back in Business

Hello All!

It’s hard to believe that Happygreenrunner launched a little over a year ago already! I know posts were sparse (if nonexistent ;)) during the school year, but now that classes are done for the year, posts will be back in full swing. I have officially finished all of my undergrad dietetics coursework! My last year of college will be devoted exclusively to my minor in entrepreneurship. All the talk about innovation and new ideas in my first class for the minor this spring has inspired me to expand the scope of my blog. I will now be posting regularly on instagram (happygreenrunner) and twitter (@happygreenrunnr). Please follow me! Both of these outlets will be updated daily, while you can expect blog posts about twice a week.

The goal of the blog last summer was just trying new recipes and increasing my knowledge/experience with food, cooking, gardening, and related topics. This will be a continued objective, but I am adding a few more goals this summer as well. For many people, theĀ most significant obstacles to eating a healthy, balanced diet is lack of knowledge about food and cooking (last summer’s objective), cost of food, and being too busy. This summer I will focus on tracking grocery spending, ways to eat healthy on a budget, and how to prep for the week ahead of time to ensure a week full of deliciousness and vitality-no matter how hectic things get. Whether you are an athlete trying to take your performance to the next level, trying to shed a few pounds, or simply interested in giving your body the TLC it deserves, the nutrition information, recipes, and lifestyle strategies I share on my blog will help get you there. Here’s to a great summer of health, energy, and happiness ahead! : )