Archive for June, 2012

What’s For Dinner?

June 30, 2012

I’ve been out and about, from the greenmarket to the fish market, taking lots of photos. Can you guess what might make the cut for dinner?

Fresh seafood from Chelsea Market perhaps?

Gorgeous radishes?

Ripe red tomatoes?

Lush leafy basil?

Stay tuned… I’ll show you later!

photos: indigo jones

 

 

Green Day

June 30, 2012

What a beautiful day to visit the Farmer’s Market. The Union Square Greenmarket is filled with fresh produce in every shade of the rainbow!


What are you having for dinner tonight?

Unrecipe of the Week

June 29, 2012

I am always looking for new and interesting salads. This blend of frisee and endive is enhanced with fresh oranges,tossed in a honey shallot vinaigrette, and  finished with a dusting of crushed hazelnuts.

Endive and Frisee Salad with Oranges and Hazelnuts

For the salad:

Belgium Endive, sliced thin

Frisee leaves, torn into small pieces

Orange sections, cut in half

For Dressing:

Whisk together  1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, 1 or 2 tablespoons of chopped shallots, 1 tablespoon of honey  and !/3 cup olive oil.

Season with salt and black pepper to taste.

For the topping:

Roast hazelnuts in a hot oven for about 7-10 minutes, until they are browned. Allow to cool slightly.

Rub the nuts between your hands to remove the skin. Chop in the food processor or place in a bag and roll over then with a rolling pin until well crushed.

To assemble:
Toss the lettuce with the dressing, and pile on individual plates. Place orange slices around the edge of the salad decoratively.

Sprinkle with toasted and chopped hazelnuts, and enjoy!

photo: Glasshouse Images

Follow us on Twitter: indigojonesnyc and “like” us on Facebook!

Sites We Love: The Cools

June 28, 2012

The Cools, a new website that launched yesterday, is the brainchild of Olivier van Themsche. The Cools is a social network, style platform and e-commerce site that is curated by trendy young ambassadors, such as Dree Hemingway, Lola Schnable and Lauren Santo Domingo. The site also has advisors, including Antoine Arnault, Lapo Elkann and Erin Featherston.

These bold faced names don’t ring a bell? Guess you aren’t as “cool” as you think you are. But no worries, you can join the site anyways.

The Cools use member profiles to connect users with bloggers and sellers that reflect their personal tastes. Members can scan the site and follow others as they hone in on their style.

“Brands, designers, creators and artists have the opportunity not only to sell their stuff but to tell their story,” van Themsche said in an interview with WWD.

The products are original and eclectic, and the user experience is more akin to Twitter or Pinterest than eBay.

Be amongst the first to join the site and start interacting with The Cools.

photos:  The Cools

follow us on Twitter: indigojonesnyc and “like” our Facebook page!

Not So Healthy “Health” Foods

June 27, 2012

Do you ever wonder why you aren’t losing weight, when you feel like you are making healthy meal choices? Chances are, despite their healthy reputation, many of the foods you are eating are packed with hidden sources of sugar, fat and calories!
Our friends at Everyday Health shared the inside scoop on 11 not so healthy “health” foods with us:

Protein bars, or “power bars” are touted as healthy snacks with deceiving labels such as “gluten free”, “low fat” and “natural”, but most of them are just fancy candy bars. Watch out for high sugar content and artificial ingredients. Many protein bars have 300-400 calories, and aren’t as satisfying as whole foods with a similar calorie count.

Granola, the organic, whole grain cereal, dried fruit and nut mix, is actually extremely high in calories, fat and sugar. Consider it a topping to sprinkle on yogurt and not as a meal.

Dried fruits are high in fiber and vitamins, but are also high in calories and sugar, and lack the water content of fresh fruit.  Just one cup of prunes packs over 400 calories, while the same amount of fresh plums has only 76.

Sushi is a great source of lean protein, vegetables and seaweed. However, many of the modern rolls have fried foods, mayo or cream cheese in them. Soy sauce is high in sodium, which can cause hypertension and bloating.

Stick to simple rolls made of fish, fresh raw vegetables and brown rice, and leave off the sauce.

Most Caesar Salads have more calories than a cheeseburger! While the lettuce is a great low-cal base, the croutons, cheese and fatty dressing make it a hidden calorie bomb! Go for a salad with lots of fresh vegetables and some grilled chicken, with a drizzle of balsamic dressing instead.

Opting for the filet of fish sandwich sounds good, but once the fish is breaded, fried and slathered in tartar sauce, it is no longer a healthy choice. Putting it on buttered white bread just adds insult to injury. Next time, try a grilled fish sandwich (open faced on whole wheat) or a simple fish taco with salsa and vegetables instead. Hold the sour cream and cheese please!

Margarine can be a good choice for those watching their cholesterol. Many margarines use trans fats, which is worse for your health than butter. Make sure your margarine is plant fortified, which can help reduce bad cholesterol levels.

Fruit juices often have tons of added sugar to enhance their taste. Even the pure fruit juices miss the fiber and nutrients that are found in the whole food, especially those with edible peels. They can also add up to lots of calories without even realizing it.

Bran muffins sound healthy, but in reality, the sugar, sodium and fat added to the whole grains make them a diet trap. The supersizing of baked goods, adds to the problem.

Flavored waters and sports drinks are either high in calories, or filled with artificial flavorings.  Those touted as vitamin and mineral enhanced often don’t have enough to substantially contribute to your daily requirement. Unless you are really sustaining long, tough workouts, opt for good ‘ole H2O.

Turkey burgers are thought of as a low fat alternative to red meat, but depending on the cut and preparation, they can have more fat than a lean cut of beef. Look for lean ground turkey at the store, and go easy on the trimmings!

Want to know more? Check out the full article and video at Everyday Health!

Photos and information courtesy of Everyday Health

Does Money Make It Better?

June 26, 2012

This week, the Internet is buzzing with the viral video of bullied bus monitor Karen Klein.

The video shows a group of young kids teasing the 65-year-old woman in an extremely rude and inappropriate manner.

People from across the country viewed the video with a mix of shock and outrage, and began an online campaign to raise money to send Ms. Klein on “the vacation of a lifetime.”

The fund has long surpassed its goal of $5000, currently raising over $650,000.

Klein told the Today Show “I keep thinking, ‘What have I done?’ It’s like I almost don’t feel like I deserve it.”

Sorry folks, but I have to agree with her. She doesn’t deserve it.

Don’t get me wrong, I think situation is heinous, but will $650,000 make it better? It seems that the issue here is not that Ms. Klein should be rewarded for her pain and suffering, but that the kids should be held responsible for causing it.

A few have come forward and issued lukewarm apologies, but it goes beyond that.

Some of the families have reported that they are receiving hate mail and threats and that boys have learned their lessons. Have they really?
Did they learn a lesson about compassion and treating others with kindness, or did the tables being turned on them spur their lesson in “empathy”?

Treating people with thoughtfulness and dignity should not be optional. Showering someone with money and gifts should not be considered the antidote for enduring the pain of bullying.

Teaching our children how to be respectful of others should be mandatory. Bullying should be viewed with zero tolerance.

Ms. Klein has indicated that she will buy her children cars and donate the rest of the money to charity. Perhaps the boys that did this should be required to do something charitable too, in order to compensate for their behavior. Then perhaps they will learn the true lesson here.

photo: Glasshouse Images

Unrecipe of the Week: Spa Water

June 25, 2012

With the heat index souring, it is important to stay hydrated. This spa water not only hits the spot, it also has natural properties to beat the bloat.

Peppermint and ginger are both known to soothe the stomach and G.I. tract, while the lime adds a tangy shot of vitamin C. Cucumber helps flush excess water from our systems.  While it seems counter-intuitive to drink water to rid your body of excess water, it actually works!

Stay cool, stay hydrated and enjoy!!!

Spa Water:

one handful of fresh mint leaves

1 lime, scrubbed and sliced

1 small chunk of peeled ginger

1/2 of a cucumber, scrubbed and sliced

Toss the ingredients into a pitcher, fill with water and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight. Strain before drinking.

photo: Spencer Jones / Glasshouse Images

Mugged

June 23, 2012

I  got mugged yesterday, on the doorstep of a friend’s home in a perfectly lovely area of Brooklyn.
I was walking up the steps to ring their doorbell when someone came up behind me, grabbed my wrist and demanded my iPhone.

You never know how you will react under such circumstances. I felt like I was having an out of body experience.

It had just stopped raining and nobody was out on the usually active street.

He looked like a nice kid, and was not someone I would have felt threatened by.

He simply grabbed the hand that held my phone very firmly, and said “give it to me.”

My first reaction was to pull it back from him. We tussled for a few seconds, while he kept repeating his request. There was not an intense struggle, but something finally clicked that I was trapped on the stoop, and this could go either way; he could tire of fighting with me or get scared off by a neighbor.  He could also have pulled out a weapon or thrown me down the stairs. The fear of the unknown made me come to my senses. Although my phone is my lifeline, it was in fact, just a phone.  I finally handed it to him and said, “Just take it and run.” He took off down the street, and I frantically rang the doorbell until someone came to let me in.

In those few short seconds he was long gone.

The police came and had me drive around in the police van looking for the perpetrator. Although I looked him in the eye, I was too shaken to feel like I could give a good description. We rode around Fort Greene, looking at everyone suspiciously. The police would detain someone that vaguely fit the description, and we would drive up and try to identify him. Of course, it was never the right person.

I started to feel sorry for him, and all the others that were wrongly detained. Yeah, he stole my phone, but he didn’t hurt me or take my wallet.  Here I was, cruising around town with 3 police officers, stopping every young black man who fit the vague description of my thief. It started to feel racist, and futile at the same time.

We went back to the police station to file a report, and look at photos of people in the correct demographic. It became apparent to me that it would be better to let the guilty party go free, than to potentially place blame on an innocent person.

After a long wait, my friends brought me home.

I am grateful that I was not harmed, and that in the end, it was just a phone. I did not lose my money, keys or credit cards.

I keep wondering what was going through his head. I must have been an easy mark. I was in a not so familiar neighborhood, and was walking slowly with my phone in my hand. He had probably followed me, when he saw me stop to send a text. He was surprisingly gentle and polite, given the circumstances. He did not speak rudely to me, toss around obscenities, or threaten me in any way. He didn’t get any rougher than he needed to in order to get what he wanted. He was well groomed and just a teenager.  What caused him to do something like this? Why was he so brazen as to walk right up the steps to someone’s front door like that? Was it really worth the potential consequences?
I am sure I will never know.

Is Sunscreen Harmful?

June 22, 2012

As the temperature rises our thoughts often turn to tanning. For several years, we have been cautioned to protect our skin from harmful UVB rays, by slathering on high SPF sunscreen.

Sunlight provides us with a healthy dose of vitamin D, which is essential in the development of strong bones. It is also thought to protect us against certain cancers, as well as insulin resistance. Sunlight also enables our natural immunity, promotes the growth and healing of our skin, and stimulates hormone production. Medical guidelines suggest that 15-20 minutes of daily sunlight is good for you.

Over the past 30 years, the incidence of melanoma, or skin cancer has increased dramatically. During this period, the use of sunscreens has increased as well. Researchers are wondering if there is a correlation.

Some of the ingredients in sunscreen are potentially toxic. Avoid products containing retinyl palmitate, oxybenzone, octisalate, octinoxate and avobenzone, which are known to cause lesions when exposed to the sun, and can interfere with hormone receptors in our bodies. Sunscreens with parabans are also not recommended.

It is not known if UVA or UVB rays cause skin cancer. Therefore, it is important to use a broad-spectrum mineral based product that blocks both.

Fortunately, there are other sources of vitamin D. Look to low fat dairy products and supplements to reap the benefits of without the potential harm.

photo: Glasshouse Images

Hot Diggety Dog!

June 21, 2012

Hebrew National hotdogs may not have actually been produced under the stringent Orthodox Jewish laws required to make them kosher.

Eleven consumers filed a complaint in Federal Court last month, contending that parent company ConAgra ignored employee’s concerns that the hot dogs and other meats processed in the facility did not meet kosher standards.

The plaintiffs are seeking unspecified damages, and an injunction against further mislabeling.

Apparently, Hebrew National doesn’t really “answer to a higher authority”, after all.

The company is denying the allegations.

Oy Vey!

photo: Glasshouse Images


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 412 other followers