Two Steps to Your Perfect Bikini Body

TGIF and Happy August 1st, everybody! Summer may be coming to a close, but it’s

NOT TOO LATE

to achieve your

BEST BIKINI BODY EVER!!!

These two miracle steps will unlock the bikini body you’ve been waiting for:

two step bikini body | Mucha | MindBodyPlate

Inspired by Alphonse Mucha and rendered by your very own SKF of MindBodyPlate

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Spiced Summer Slaw with Pistachios

spiced summer slaw - MindBodyPlate

It was a humid one in Brooklyn today. And after a short morning run with my husband, a 90 minute yoga class, and a sunny, mile-long walk home from the studio, I was feeling the heat. I needed something light, fresh, and cooling.

Enter my subtly spiced summer slaw with pistachios – a raw green cabbage dish with a delicate hint of coriander, celery seed, and nutmeg. It’s just the side dish for your next dinner party, BBQ, or picnic.

cabbage - MindBodyPlate

Ayurvedic wisdom tells us that coriander is a cooling spice, good for dissipating the excess pitta energy that tends to build within us during the summer months. This recipe asks you to warm it on the stove top with some extra virgin olive oil in order to bring out its unique flavor, a step that you can probably omit without much consequence if you’re stretched for time.

pistachios - MindBodyPlate

In case I haven’t made this clear before, I’ll say it again: I love sauce. The dressing for this slaw is designed to be rather abundant, so that each bite of cabbage will be fully saturated with flavor. If you don’t want your slaw to be a tad on the soupy side, you may wish to add more cabbage or refrain from using all the dressing.

spiced summer slaw - MindBodyPlate

Spiced Summer Slaw with Pistachios

Vegetarian / Gluten Free / Soy Free

Ingredients:

  • 6 c green cabbage, finely shredded (there’s more than enough in one small head)
  • 1 c yellow onion, finely diced (approximately one onion)
  • 1/2 – 3/4 c shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 clove of fresh garlic
  • 1 c plain organic yogurt, from grass fed cows
  • 1/8 – 1/4 c champagne vinegar
  • 1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp celery salt
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • pepper to taste

Preparation:

  • Heat the olive oil and coriander on the stove top over low heat for approximately 5 minutes. Then turn off the heat and let cool completely.
  • Peel away and compost the outer leaves of the cabbage and rinse what remains thoroughly. Divide the head into wedges and finely shred them in a food processor (I like the pieces of cabbage to be quite small). Set 6 cups of shredded cabbage aside in a large bowl.
  • Finely dice one onion (ideally about 1 cup), and add to the bowl of shredded cabbage.
  • Add the cooled coriander-infused olive oil to a blender, along with the garlic, yogurt, vinegar, and remaining spices. Blend until incorporated.
  • Pour the finished dressing on the cabbage and onion mixture, add more pepper to taste, and stir in the roughly chopped pistachios (leave a few whole pistachios for garnish).
  • Stir thoroughly and refrigerate until serving. Can be made a day ahead of time, giving the flavors a chance to really mesh!

Serves 4

spiced summer slaw - MindBodyPlate

Sweet Yams with Balsamic Cherries and Caramelized Onions

The best way to curb sugar cravings is to increase the number of naturally sweet, wholesome foods in your diet. I just returned to New York City from a weekend in the Catskills, where I whiled away a blissful afternoon enjoying a bowl of sweet, juicy cherries. Now that I’m back in NYC, I can’t stop thinking about those cherries and all the sweetness summer can bring.

Cherries aren’t just a great way to get your sweet on. They pack a slew of anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, and anti-cancer compounds, including perillyl alcohol, which inhibits tumor growth, and ellagic acid, which kills cancer cells without harming healthy normal cells. Cherry juice contains anthocyanins, which help to relieve inflammation throughout the body. But keep in mind that the Environmental Working Group listed cherries among the 12 foods most contaminated with pesticides, so it’s important to buy organic.

For this recipe, I paired cherries with the natural sweetness of caramelized onions and the candy-like confection of baked yams. It’s a combo that’s guaranteed to nip unnecessary sugar cravings in the bud. It makes an excellent side dish or a light meal on its own. And it’s so creamy and yummy that I bet it’d make a great breakfast as well.

Sweet Yams with Balsamic Cherries and Caramelized Onions

Vegetarian / Vegan / Gluten Free

Ingredients:

  • 6 baby yams, cut into small chunks
  • 1 medium white onion, chopped
  • 2 dozen cherries, pitted, stems removed, and roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 3 small cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Preparation:

  • Wash yams and chop them into uniformly small chunks.
  • Add yams, minced ginger, and minced garlic to a baking pan that has been lined with tin foil (save yourself the mess – they get sticky).
  • Coat yams with coconut oil and maple syrup. 1 to 2 tbsp each should do it. Equal amounts. Use as much or as little as makes sense to you.
  • Bake yams at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 45 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, heat a dollop of coconut oil in a large sauté pan.
  • Add chopped onions to the pan and sauté on VERY LOW HEAT for 20-30 minutes until they begin to caramelize.
  • When onions have begun to brown, add chopped cherries and balsamic vinegar.
  • Continue to sauté for an additional 15-20 minutes, until the cherries have softened and the mixture is a bit syrupy.

Serve the baked yams with a mountain of the cherry- onion mixture right on top. I like mine with a light sprinkling of sea salt. The subtle flavors of the roasted garlic and ginger with the intensely sweet and tart balsamic cherries make this dish absolutely irresistible – and worth turning the oven on in the summer.

Serves 2

References:

Bowden, Jonny, Ph.D., C.N.S., (2007). The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth: The surprising, unbiased truth about what you should eat and why. Gloucester, MA: Fair Winds Press.