Chocolate Fudge Cupcakes with Avocados and Applesauce!

It’s birthday time at our house and I have been searching for a healthier alternative to traditional cupcakes! Would you believe that these chocolate fudge cupcakes are made with Avocados and Applesauce? And no sugar or oil?
Check out paleospirit.com for the frosting which uses 3 ingredients: avocado, cocoa powder and maple syrup (although I substituted agave)! For the cupcakes themselves I used the recipe from chow.com -basic vegan chocolate cupcake- and substituted applesauce for the oil and Norbu monk fruit sweetener instead of sugar. I am currently exploring other options instead of sugar. What are your favorite substitutions?
Stepsinstilettos.com's photo.
Stepsinstilettos.com's photo.

A Healthy Ceasar Salad!

I normally don’t eat caesar salad because I find the dressing too powerful and it’s not very healthy.  Lots of fat in the cream and cheese used to make the dressing and topping, not to mention the croutons….  It’s not the healthiest of salads.  However, each time I am pregnant I, for some reason, crave a caesar salad!  I was determined to find another option and here it is!  For all of you caesar salad fans out there trying to eat a healthier and low fat diet, try this instead!

Dressing (serves 2-4):

1/2 cup roasted cauliflower (roast for 15 minutes in oven on 400)

2-3 2 inch sheets of Kombu (a sea vegetable you can find in the Asian section)

1 tablespoon ground flax seed

1/4 cup cold water

1 lemon squeezed

1/2 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire Sauce

1 garlic clove

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dijon or german mustard

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients in a food processor or Vitamix until creamy.

Topping (Serves 2-4):

1 cup raw cauliflower

1 tablespoon sesame seeds

2 tablespoons hulled hemp seeds

1 clove garlic

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Salad:

For this salad, instead of using croutons for crunch,  I prefer chopped cucumber, carrots and 1 jar of roasted chickpeas (roast in oven for 25 minutes on 400).  I also think a 1/2 jar or marinated artichokes taste amazing with this salad!  Use romaine lettuce as your base and it tastes salty, creamy, crunchy and delicious!  Plus, this contains only a fraction of the fat in a regular caesar salad and we added lots of extra vegetables so the nutrient and fiber content is much higher!  Great for your waistline!

 

 

Eco-Friendly Night Out look + Interview with Viva Creatures!

Happy #fashionfriday! We are currently working with eco-friendly designers to showcase how beautiful these fashions have become! Our featured item is the Victor Bag by www.vivacreatures.com retailing for $305 and large enough to bring everything you need while still looking chic!  Complete the outfit with pics by #vivacreatures #cridecoeur #eileenfisher #amourvert and #piperlime - all materials are either organic, cruelty-free, or eco-friendly! It’s easy to Be kind!
Still chilly outside but looking to spring! #vegan #cruelty-free
Check out our interview with Nora, creator of Viva Creatures!  (The Victor Bag is featured above!  To look at more of the collection go to www.vivacreatures.com)
  • How did you get started in the vegan fashion world?

-       I have always loved fashion and creating things, two passions that were not satisfied in my first profession as an attorney. I wanted my career to reflect these interests, so I set out to design something beautiful, lasting, and impactful. I had what you could call my “aha!” moment one day when I was coveting a gorgeous bag made of calf skin and realized that what it took to make that bag was anything but gorgeous. I began to question the status quo. Why is leather considered luxurious anyway?  Shouldn’t every element of a piece be beautiful for the end result to be beautiful? I concluded: A beautiful bag is a beautiful bag, but the notion that its material is immaterial is outdated. Viva Creatures! was born.

  • Why and when did you become vegan?
    • I have always flirted with vegetarianism, but I became a firm vegetarian after reading Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals. The book opened the doors not only to the untold suffering farm animals experience, but also told of how beautiful, clever, and loving these animals can be. This was always on my mind as I began designing handbags. Why couldn’t accessories be gorgeous and save animals? Viva Creatures! proves that they can.
  • How would you describe your line of handbags?

-       Our aesthetic is clean, modern, and structured.

  • What is your go-to vegan handbag?

-       Oh, I love them all! I carry my Severine tote (which debuts in the spring!) when I travel.  However, my Valkyrie crossbody is definitely my go-to.  I love the round design – it goes with everything from morning errands to date night – and the double-bag is the perfect size for all my essentials.

  • What is the biggest obstacle you face?
    • Great question. Some women want ethical luxury. Others just want luxury. We meet the needs of both, but we may not fulfill the “fast fashion” trend.  We are the opposite of fast fashion.  We aim to provide accessories that serve our customers long-term by designing clean, classic pieces. Our materials are gorgeous and more durable than leather. The USA-made craftsmanship is impeccable.  We hope that our pieces will become our customer’s favorites and part of her story, not a bag she’ll toss out the following season.
  • What can we expect next?
    • Our new spring pieces! Keep an eye out for additional styles available in the early spring. The colors are stunning– very fresh and natural. The look remains consistent with the clean lines and structured feel of the opening “V” collection, but the new pieces can take you from a breakfast meeting to happy hour with girlfriends, effortlessly.

Please Sign and Share this petition for healthier food policies regarding children!

Would you like President Barack Obama to lay out a vision in his State of the Union Address on Jan. 20 for improving America’s health and combating childhood obesity?

Click the link below and sign our petition respectfully urging the President to make our nation’s wellness a priority in his upcoming address! The online petition available at http://wh.gov/i4Yrx

For more information: PCRM.org/…/state-of-the-union-must-address-americas-alarming

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine—a national organization of more than 12,000 doctors—respectfully requests that in your State of the Union…
PETITIONS.WHITEHOUSE.GOV
State of the Union Must Address America’s Alarming Health Says National Doctors GroupWhite House Petition Calls for Bold Plan to Solve Health Disparities, Childhood Obesity 

State of the Union Must Address America’s Alarming Health Says National Doctors Group

WASHINGTON—The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine—a national organization of more than 12,000 doctors—is urging people living in America to sign a petition that respectfully asks President Barack Obama to lay out a bold vision in his State of the Union Address on Jan. 20 for improving America’s health and combating childhood obesity

The online petition available at http://wh.gov/i4Yrx is an excerpt of a more extensive letter Physicians Committee president Neal Barnard, M.D., sent to President Obama on Jan. 13, which states that his leadership is essential in the following areas

“(1) the poor state of health of many Americans, (2) the glaring health disparities between people who are economically challenged and those of means, and (3) continuing poor diet habits in children and the lack of progress in preventing childhood obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other chronic health conditions directly linked to poor diets.

Scientific evidence is unequivocal on healthful eating. Most recently, the final meeting of Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) placed priority on moving toward a healthier and more sustainable diet rich in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains and lower in red and processed meat—stating that a dietary pattern higher in plant-based foods and lower in animal-based foods is “more health promoting and is associated with lesser environmental impact than is the current average U.S. diet.”

“Given the lack of progress on childhood obesity and continuing health disparities, we hope the State of the Union Address will offer new leadership, starting with changing food policies in major ways,” says nutrition researcher Neal Barnard, M.D. “Failing that, this petition will give the White House another opportunity to tell the country how it will tackle nutritional problems that touch every single person in America.”

The petition needs 100,000 signatures within 30 days for the White House to provide a response.

Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.