January 12, 2012

Really Natural Cookbooks: Vegan Pie in the Sky

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Who doesn't love pie? Pies are actually quite easy to make vegan, although a flaky crust can be a challenge without the butter. Have no fear vegan pie lovers, Vegan Pie in the Sky: 75 Out-of-This-World Recipes for Pies, Tarts, Cobblers, and More will never leave you wondering where they dairy products went!

Holidays? Check. Birthdays? Check. Tuesdays? Check! Our research says life is 100% better any day pie is involved. There's nothing like a rich, gooey slice of apple pie straight from the oven, baked in a perfectly flaky crust and topped with cinnamon-sugar. And now it can be yours, along with dozens more mouthwatering varieties, vegan at last and better than ever.

Vegan Pie in the Sky is the latest force in Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero's baking revolution. You'll find delicious and adorable pies, tarts, cobblers, cheesecakes and more--all made without dairy, eggs, or animal products. From fruity to chocolaty, nutty to creamy, Vegan Pie in the Sky has the classic flavors you crave. And the recipes are as easy as, well, you know. Serve up some:

  • Maple-Kissed Blueberry Pie

  • She's My Cherry Pie

  • Chocolate-Peanut Butter Tartlets

  • Salted Pecan Caramel Pie

  • Pumpkin Cheesecake


Learn how to rock (and roll) the perfect pastry crust, whether butter, graham cracker, chocolate cookie, or gluten-free almond. Luscious toppings transform your pie into a showstopper. And you'll even find handheld treats, to make getting your recommended daily allowance of pie more convenient! With gorgeous color photos and Isa and Terry's irreverent commentary throughout, Vegan Pie in the Sky is the modern baker's bible for pie that's out of this world.

I make pies, but I rarely make a tart! Oooh, my mouth is watering looking at these recipes. Should I start with the stawberry & cream tart or maybe the chocolate raspberry tart? I have these fruits frozen from the garden. We will be eating well this weekend!

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 30, 2011

Really Natural Eating: Wildly Affordable Organic

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Wildly Affordable Organic: Eat Fabulous Food, Get Healthy, and Save the Planet--All on $5 a Day or Less by Linda Watson debunks all myths that healthy and organic eating is expensive compared to processed food. With 100 recipes and sample menus, Linda shows you simple, cheap, and delicious it can be.

Linda Watson, the founder of CookforGood.com, created her wildly affordable cooking plans after being inspired by a national challenge to eat on a food-stamp budget. She credits her background in project management helping her to not just survive but thrive on just a dollar a meal per person...

If you've wanted to eat like it matters but felt you couldn't afford it, Wildly Affordable Organic is for you. It's easy to think that "organic" is a code word for "expensive," but it doesn't have to be. With these ingenious cooking plans and healthy, satisfying recipes, Linda Watson reveals the incredible secret of how you can eat well every day--from blueberry pancakes for breakfast to peach pie for dessert--averaging less than two dollars a meal.

Get ready for wild savings! You'll discover how to:

• Ease your family into a greener lifestyle with the 20-minute starter plan

• Go organic on just $5 a day--or go thrifty and spend even less

• Take advantage of your freezer and freeze your costs

• Find the best deals at your local farmers' market or grocery store

• Cook easy, scrumptious, seasonal dishes from scratch


I like how Linda arranges her menus based on seasons, as it only makes sense that seasonal food will be cheaper than out of season food that has been shipped from different climates. It is also fresher and better for your health and the planet.

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 29, 2011

Really Natural Books: The Joy of Cheesemaking

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I have never made cheese, but I have friends who do. Homemade cheese is so delicious, and someday, I plan to try. Thanks to Jody M. Farnham and Marc Druart's book The Joy of Cheesemaking, I think I can!

Review
"Starred Review. Brush up on Chemistry 101 and be prepared to master all kinds of new techniques...In between the scientific lingo and the critical procedures of learning about the art of cheesemaking come some great color photographs, a few dozen recipes (e.g., Texas cheese soufflé, fromage flatbread), and introductions to "rock star" cheesemakers around the country that include personal histories, a cheese-featured dish or two, and contact information. And lest we lose sight of the end results, enjoying le fromage has its day in two chapters covering the how-tos of building a cheese board and pairings with wine or beer. The authors--one American, the other French--are affiliated with the Vermont Institute of Artisan Cheese, one of a handful of similar accredited educational institutions in the U.S." (Booklist )

The pictures make me salivate, and the instructions are simple enough I think I could do it! Now, maybe I just need to get a cow for constant cheesemaking supply!

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 28, 2011

GMO-Free: SunRidge Farms Organic and All Natural Snacks Perfect for Holiday Travel

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Holiday travel can be a drag with winter weather and crowds. You don't need to add the feeling of being "hangry" to the mix. SunRidge Farms has many organic and/or all natural snacks to stave off those feelings and keep you in a positive mood.

Sunridge Farms Organic Cranberry Harvest

Ingredients
Organic Chocolate Chips (Chocolate Chips (Organic Dehydrated Cane Juice, Organic Unsweetened Chocolate, Organic Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin, Organic Vanilla), Organic Peanuts, Organic Almonds, Organic Pumpkin Seeds, Organic Cranberries (Organic Cranberries, Organic Sugar, Organic Sunflower or Organic Canola Oil), Organic Sunflower Seeds, Organic Raisins, Organic Apples.

Sunridge Farms Thai Curry Cashews
Ingredients
Roasted Cashews, Curry Seasoning (salt, maltodextrin, spices, torula yeast, onion, garlic, turmeric, extractives of spice, natural flavor), Expeller Pressed Canola Oil and/or Expeller Pressed Sunflower Oil

SunRidge Farms All Natural Dark Chocolate Almonds
Crunchy and sweet. Skillfully crafted in the time-tested European confectionery traditions Small Batch Roasted Almonds. Freshly roasted in house, then drenched in SunRidge Farms All Natural Dark Chocolate Dark chocolate is recognized for its antioxidant properties Luscious Dark Chocolate and Fresh Roasted Almonds. Irresistible.

SunRidge Farms is committed to eco-friendly business:

From our beginnings to today, SunRidge Farms™ has been committed to green living. Our green commitment goes beyond our organic and all natural products, reaching through our business and beyond to make the world a better place for our customers, employees, and the planet. From offering sustainably produced products, to supporting charitable causes, to incorporating greener business practices throughout our offices and warehouse, our commitment to make a difference in the world will never wane. Here are just a few ways that we live green:
  • Our warehouse is equipped with a 99kW solar panel system
  • Seventeen delivery trucks have been converted to renewable biodiesel fuel
  • Low-flow water-saving devices have been incorporated into our offices and manufacturing plant
  • Recycling programs include corrugated cardboard box, ink-jet cartridges, office paper, plastics, and shrink wrap
  • Our state-of-the-art purification and ventilation system has imporoved air quality throughout our operations
Of course, the dark chocolate almonds are my favorite! Once again, SunRidge Farms does not disappoint, other than I wish all of their products were 100% organic.

 

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 27, 2011

Teas'Tea Pure Green Tea and Mango Oolong

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If you are looking for a refreshing tea beverage, Tea's Tea has some low calorie drinks that may quench your thirst.
Teas' Tea Pure Green Unsweetened Tea:


  • Distinct clarity and natural taste of green tea--brewed and bottled using ITO EN?s natural clear bottling technology

  • Pack of twelve 16.9 fl oz bottles

  • Unsweetened tea with no calories, 60 mg of caffeine per 16.9 fl oz, more than 100% RDA of vitamin C, high in tea antioxidants

  • Drink for yourself to taste the distinction of a beverage alternative that is healthy and designed for an active lifestyle

  • ITO EN's knowledge, expertise, and experience help them in making an extraordinary ready-to-drink tea


Teas' Tea Mango Oolong Tea:

  • Has the full taste of oolong tea paired with the bright taste of mango--enjoy the pure refreshment of this invigorating blend

  • Pack of twelve 16.9 fl oz bottles

  • Naturally sweetened with a touch of cane sugar-- only 40 calories per serving, all-natural tea with no colors, powders, or concentrates

  • Good source of natural "catechin" tea antioxidants

  • Drink for yourself to taste the distinction of a beverage alternative that designed for an active lifestyle

  • ITO EN's knowledge, expertise, and experience help them in making an extraordinary ready-to-drink tea


These products are not organic, and I felt the need to sweeten the unsweetened green tea. If you have the time, better to just make your own cup of tea, but in a pinch, grabbing a cold Teas' Tea is definitely better than a soft drink.

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 23, 2011

ally Natural, Gluten-Free Candy: Yummy Earth Sour Beans

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My daughter loves Yummy Earth's Sour Beans!
Have you ever had a Sour Jelly Bean? Neither had we! My little boys love the look of colorful jelly beans so they asked me to make jelly beans "our way"...and "can we
make them sour, too, Daddy"? Sergio and I tested and tasted and formulated and created YumEarth Naturals Sour Jelly Beans (not too sour) that will make your mouth dance!!! No artificial colors or artificial flavors, no gluten, no nuts or tree nuts and no dairy or soy!!! Vegan as well, though we forgot to print "vegan" on the bag.

They have the perfect sour bite and are really popular in my home.

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 21, 2011

Innobaby Stacking Bento: BPA -Free

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Are you looking for a convenient way to store those holiday leftovers? Innobaby has a unique solution with their stacking bento, part of the packin smart line.

Create fun meals and snacks for on-the-go. Divided compartments are perfect for packing sandwiches, pastas, veggies, fruits, snacks and more.

STACK filled compartments using the slim dividing tray.

LOCK containers to preserve mealtime creations & snacks.

NEST empty containers for easy travel and compact storage.

  • see through top lid with locking side panels
  • removable silicone seal for divided compartment
  • slim dividing tray for separating main compartment to divided compartment
  • main compartment = 12 oz
  • divided compartment = 8 oz (4 oz each side).
  • Dishwasher safe.
  • bpa-,phthalates-, pvc-, lead FREE.
This product is made of plastic in Vietnam. I do prefer glass or stainless steel food containers over plastic, even when it is BPA-free.

 

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 19, 2011

Organic Ancient Grains: Jovial Einkhorn Pasta

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I am really into ancient grains, as studies have shown modern wheat has been bred to be contain high protein causing more allergies and sensitivities. Jovial products are made from einkhorn:

Einkorn is very different from all other varieties of wheat. It was the first species of wheat grown by man more than 12,000 years ago. Now considered a relic crop, it has practically been forgotten because its yield is low in the fields and its type of gluten makes bread-baking a challenge...

Einkorn is genetically pure, exceptionally nutritious and surprisingly delicious. It is the healthiest form of wheat because it has never been hybridized.


I love Jovial's enkhorn cookies. Now I have tried the pasta:

Jovial Whole Grain Einkorn Pasta is a delicious foundation to a nutritious and enjoyable meal. Although Whole Grain Einkorn is a healthy source of dietary fiber, it does not have a grainy or gritty texture. Packed with protein, B vitamins and minerals, it will leave you feeling very satisfied. Our pasta is masterly crafted in Italy by expert pasta artisans, who only enhance the inherent goodness of this most ancient grain. We care about our products from the seed all the way to the package. Jovial Whole Grain Einkorn is packaged in a carton made from 80 percent recycled cardboard and is 100 percent recyclable. The window is certified 100 percent compostable, made from FSC certified wood pulp.

When I traveled to Italy last summer, I actually had Jovial enkhorn cookies in my carry-on for snacking. I never saw this product on the shelves in Italy, but I sure enjoyed eating them in their homeland.

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 16, 2011

Low Glycemic NuNaturals Stevia Products: Add Fiber, Not Sugar

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Stevia is quite the health food rage, especially for those that can't eat sugar because they are diabetic or are dieting. Although I am not a huge fan of it myself, I appreciate that an all-natural alternative to sugar exists, especially for those suffering from health problems.

NuNaturals is a leading supplier of quality stevia. They sent us the following products to try:
NuStevia White Stevia Powder Packets

White SteviaTM Extract Powder contains the flowing agent maltodextrin, a food grade carbohydrate derived from grain. Tasteless, maltodextrin is the perfect medium to use with the extract, making it easier to measure. This form is perfect for sprinkling on cereal, yogurt as well as mixing in beverages. One quarter to three quarters of a teaspoon is the recommended serving. White Stevia Powder contains 60% more Stevia extract than most other brands on the market. The cost to get the same sweet taste of other brands can be up to 2 1/2 times more expensive compared to NuNaturals. NuNaturals White Stevia Powder will save you money.

NuNaturals Morefiber Stevia Baking Blend Powder
As a dietary supplement use MoreFiber™ in your favorite recipe. MoreFiber makes it easy to reduce or take sugar out of your conventional recipes while adding high quality fibers.

NuNaturals Sweet Health Erythritol Crystals Powder
Sweet Health, Erythritol Crystals is a naturally-occurring sweetener found in many fruits and vegetables. It is as three fourths as sweet as sucrose, has no after-taste and is safe for diabetics.

NuNaturals Cocoa Bean Extract Liquid
The average 40 gram bar of dark chocolate contains 250 calories and 14 grams of fat! If the chocolate bar uses Dutch processs cocoa, some of the polyphenols will be destroyed. NuNaturals Cocoa Extract contains 15% of the polyphenols and 10% theobromines in Cocoa. Ten milliliters of our Cocoa Extract would contain the same amount of polyphenols and theobromines in a chocolate bar at about the same cost, but without the fat and calories!

NuNaturals Alcohol Free Stevia Liquid
NuNaturals Alcohol Free Stevia Pure Liquid is for individuals that are sensitive to alcohol here is a product especially for you. For everyone else the unique sweet taste that the glycerine imparts makes this a favorite of many NuNaturals Stevia Pure Liquid.

NuNaturals Vanilla Alcohol Free Stevia Liquid

  • A true vanilla extract made from premium bean that produces a product with incomparable taste.

  • NuNaturals has combined singing dog vanilla with our delicious Stevia.


NuNaturals Nustevia Nocarbs Blend

  • NuStevia white stevia nocarbs uses erythritol, a natural filler that is produced from corn.

  • Erythritol enhances the taste of stevia.

  • No effect on blood sugar levels and is safe for both type I and II diabetics.


NuNaturals Pure Liquid Clear Stevia
NuNaturals has developed this easy to use liquid that allows the most accurate measurement of Stevia Extract. This liquid is so concentrated, that only 5-10 drops are needed.

NuNaturals Nustevia White Stevia Quick Dissolve Tablets
Quick Dissolve Tabs contain our NuStevia White Stevia Extract and fiber. These marvelous tabs are a pre-measured serving. The tabs are very easy to break into halves or even fourths so that you can use as much as you want or as little as you want. NuStevia Quick Dissolve Tablets contains absolutely no calories or carbohydrates.

NuNaturals Nustevia Pure White Stevia Extract
Our NuStevia White Stevia Extract is our most concentrated form, and only a tiny amount is needed. This is a powder extact. This form is excellent for mixing up large batches of beverages or for recipes. The 1 oz bottle contains only the NuStevia extract and natural flavors. NuNaturals Pure NuStevia Extract contains absolutely no calories.

I prefer the liquid stevias to the powders. I think they have a better flavor. I like adding them to tea.

There are a ton of recipes on the NuNaturals website. https://nunaturals.com

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 2, 2011

Holiday Travel: Gluten-Free, Vegan, All-Natural Ready-to-Eat Meals by gopicnic

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If you are planning any holiday travel, whether by plane, train, or automobile, gopicnic makes it easy to eat well, both naturally and gluten-free. These ready-to-eat meals are all about convenience.  They range in calories from about 400 to 500 calories, at least for the samples were sent.

gopicnic hummus + crackers:

A balanced meal featuring Wild Garden Hummus Dip, Crunchmaster Multi-Seed Crackers, Seapoint Farms Dry Roasted Edamame, Sweet Perry Orchards Baja Blend Fruit & Nut Mix and an Endangered Species Dark Chocolate Square. All-Natural, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Kosher. 400 calories, 12g fiber, 25g protein. The food in GoPicnic meals contains no trans fats, no high fructose corn syrup, no added MSG, and no artificial colors or flavors. Each item inside is individually packaged with full allergen and manufacturing warnings. No refrigeration, heating, or preparation required. Just open and enjoy.

gopicnic sunbutter + crackers:
A balanced meal featuring Sunbutter Sunflowerseed Spread, Crunchmaster Multi-Grain Crackers, Enjoy Life Seed & Fruit Trail Mix, Niagara Naturals Tropical Fruit Bites and an Enjoy Life Double Chocolate Cookie. All-Natural, Gluten-Free, Vegan, and Free of 7 Common Allergens including wheat, dairy, fish, shellfish, peanuts, tree nuts, and egg. Also made without sulfites and casein. Contains no soy ingredients, but SunButter is made on equipment that also processes soy (a shared roaster that is cleaned thoroughly between processing products). 490 calories, 9g fiber, 12g protein. The food in GoPicnic meals contains no trans fats, no high fructose corn syrup, no added MSG, and no artificial colors or flavors. Each item inside is individually packaged with full allergen and manufacturing warnings. No refrigeration, heating, or preparation required. Just open and enjoy!

I recognize the convenience of these products, but the problem with snack size packaging is it not very eco-friendly. Fortunately, the outer packaging that contains the snacks is made from 100% recycled fiber content (35% post-consumer material). I appreciate these products are natural, but they would be even better if organic.


Disclosure:  The products described above were sent to us as free samples.  Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given.  No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews.  The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

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