Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Weekly Recipe: Alaskan Tomato Soup

This week's recipe is perfect for January's wintry weather. Just remember to use jarred or boxed tomato sauce as your base. (For information on why canned tomato sauce is so bad for you read my post here.)

Also, the original recipe calls for tofu, but I am not a fan of this highly proccessed food which can have very negative effects on estrogen levels in males and females, so I have left it out.  

Blissful eating and namaste,


Alaskan Tomato Soup

Vegetarian Times Issue: January 1, 2007   p.1. Time: 30 minutes or fewer

Alaska resident Angela Wilde uses cooking and eating to get out of the house, despite the winter elements. 

Ingredient List

Serves 6
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 medium red onion, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced (about 2 Tbs.)
  • 1 14-oz. can diced tomatoes with sweet onion
  • 1 14-oz. can plain tomato sauce
  • 1 low-sodium vegetable bouillon cube or 3 cups homemade vegetable stock (much better:-)
  • 1/2 cup couscous
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 2 Tbs. chopped oregano
  • 2 Tbs. chopped basil


  1. Heat olive oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and sauté 5 minutes, or until onion is translucent.
  2. Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce, bouillon cube and 3 cups water. Bring to a simmer, and add couscous, parsley, oregano and basil. Cook 5 minutes, or until couscous is tender. Season with salt and pepper, and serve hot.

Nutritional Information

Per SERVING: Calories: 162, Protein: 5g, Total fat: 6g, Saturated fat: g, Carbs: 24g, Cholesterol: mg, Sodium: 678mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugars: 7g

7 Food Experts Won't Eat

My brother Chris sent me this great article on 7 foods experts won't eat. Here is one that did NOT surprise me, but that I think many people would not realize can be very toxic:

1. Canned Tomatoes
The expert: Fredrick vom Saal, PhD, an endocrinologist at the University of Missouri who studies bisphenol-A

The problem: The resin linings of tin cans contain bisphenol-A, a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to ailments ranging from reproductive problems to heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Unfortunately, acidity (a prominent characteristic of tomatoes) causes BPA to leach into your food. Studies show that the BPA in most people's body exceeds the amount that suppresses sperm production or causes chromosomal damage to the eggs of animals. "You can get 50 mcg of BPA per liter out of a tomato can, and that's a level that is going to impact people, particularly the young," says vom Saal. "I won't go near canned tomatoes."

The solution: Choose tomatoes in glass bottles (which do not need resin linings), such as the brands Bionaturae and Coluccio. You can also get several types in Tetra Pak boxes, like Trader Joe's and Pomi.

From: The 7 foods experts won't eat, by Liz Vaccariello, Editor-in-Chief, PREVENTION,
You can read the article and find out what the other 6 foods are, here

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Teal's Plan for 2010

Well, we are only 13 days into 2010...not to late too late to map out a plan for the year, right? Nope. It's never too late to reflect on life and see where some changes could be beneficial. So, here are some of my goals for the year:

1.  Do less, enjoy my life more.
2.  Open myself more and more to the magic and abundance of the Universe.
3.  Begin a formal mantra practice.
4.  Spend even more time outside (as much as possible!)
5.  Spend as little time on the computer as possible.
6.  Grow in my marriage as we begin our second married year together.
7.  Continue my education as a yoga teacher so that I can give more to my students and myself.
8.  Loose the 15 pounds of "loved-up" weight I have gained since I met my husband.
9.  Make more time for my own sadhana (yoga practice).
10. Produce at least one yoga DVD and book and several more audio recordings. Write to my blogs more.

Some thoughts on these goals:

One of my good friends has a motto, "The more you do, the more you can do." I love her, but I think this is total bullshit. This is the bullshit of the modern world telling us that "more is better" and we can "have it all". In this realm and in with the constraints of a physical body and time, we can not have it all. And is that really neccesary anyway? What we can have is "quality versus quantity," and mindfulness and deep experience versus mindlessness and a shallow skipping from one thing to the next. I want to FEEL my life and in doing less I feel infinitely more.

What is infinite is the beauty and wonder of the Universe. When I slow down everthing become brighter, tastes better, expands before my eyes.

To this end, I started a forty day practice of the long form of Gayatri mantra on January 10th. This means that I will chant the mantra 108 times each day (I use my mala, or prayer beads, to keep track.) This takes about 35 minutes and it is an amazing practice. I will post more on Gayatri later and give you updates on my observations throughout this practice.

One of my favorite ways to this is to be outside. Sometimes I just sit on one of the benches in my backyard and breath slowly and just watch. Oh, I love that so much. It fills my heart with joy. Being outside makes everything better.

My happiness is inversely purportional to my time spent on the computer. 'Nuff said.

At 35 years I was lucky enough to find my soul mate. Everyday with him is a gift and growing together in our lives is something I look forward to everyday.

Last year I was fortunate to study with some amazing yoga teachers including, TKV Desikachar, Tias Little, Aadil Palkhivala, Mary Reilly and Phyllis Rollins. As a result, I grew SO much as a teacher and student. I want this to continue in 2010.

Any yoga teacher will tell you that it is an ironic occupational hazard of being yoga teacher that one's own practice tends to suffer. With a full teaching schedule of group classes and privates each week it is easy for my personal practice to get shorter and shallower. This will change.

Love, sweet love. A wonderful thing is the abundance of love...not so lovely are the "love handles" which result from getting "all loved up." I've gained 15 pounds since I met my hubbie and while I am still a size 6 and extremely healthy, I don't feel good in my own all. This also goes back to the previous point about needing to make more time again for my own practice and other forms of exercise.

Writing to my blogs has been something I have enjoyed so much and I need to get back to it. I have several guided meditations recorded and for sale, but I want to do more. Producing my own yoga DVD and book has been a longtime goal and I want to make that happen this year. Balancing doing this (I will write, perform, edit and produce both of these myself) with my goal to limit computer time will be a great challenge.

Well, that's it! I'll let you know how it is going.... and I hope you will do the same! What are your goals this year?