Friday, May 21, 2010

Anti-angiogenesis Inspired Dinner

Now that you've had a chance to watch William Li's TED Talk about angiogenesis (that I saw on boingboing and featured in my May 18 blog post) and you're feeling all fired up to try it out, I have just the thing to get you started! I wrote down the list of foods that his team is testing (shown at minute 12:55) and I made a meal with only those ingredients. I did notice that at the end of the list was "Others", but I decided that my challenge was to skip "Others" and only create the recipes with what he actually had on the list. In case you missed it, here is the list:
The meal I made consisted of Tomato Maitake Soup, Citrus Tuna Steaks, Anti-Angiogenesis Greens, and, for dessert, Chocolate Cinnamon Fruit Compote. How cool is that?! It's very cool, because Boris and I just ate it all and it was fantastic!

Note: all the recipes are for 2 to 4 people.

Tomato Maitake Soup

Finely mince 2 cloves of garlic and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes (increases potency of beneficial chemicals!) Also, in a bowl, soak one dried maitake mushroom in about 1 1/4 cup of water for about 10 minutes. Chop pieces when they are soft and save the soaking water. You should have about a cup of mushroom pieces and a cup of soaking water.
Saute the garlic in 1 Tablespoon olive oil.
Add 1 teaspoon turmeric and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Stir over the heat for a few seconds, then add the mushroom pieces. Add 1 28 ounce can of ground tomatoes, 1/2 can of water, the mushroom soaking water, and 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder (not instant cocoa, just cocoa powder!) Cover and simmer for about 1/2 hour or so.

Citrus Tuna Steaks

Start with 2 tuna steaks, about 6 ounces each, sliced 1/2 inch thin.
Mince 1 clove garlic, let it rest 5 minutes, and saute in 1 Tablespoon olive oil. Add the tuna steaks when the garlic is starting to turn light brown. Sear on both sides to desired degree of doneness (anywhere from a minute or two for rare to 8 minutes for medium well and cooked through). Set tuna steaks aside on a plate. Squeeze juice from 1 lemon into the pan. Add 1/4-1/2 cup orange-pineapple juice and one sliced red apple. Cover and saute about 10 minutes until the apples are just turning soft. Add the tuna back into the pan and, uncovered, saute for another minute to mix the flavors.

Anti-Angiogenesis Greens

In a saucepan with a lid, saute 1 minced clove of garlic in 1 teaspoon olive oil. Add 3 cups washed and chopped kale (I like Lacinato kale), 1/2 to 1 cup shelled edamame (Mukimame), and 1/2 cup brewed green tea. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes until the greens are tender.

Chocolate Cinnamon Fruit Compote

Peel a pink grapefruit, leaving most of the white part on, and chop it into bite-sized chunks. Put it in your serving bowl and add about a cup of sweet red cherries, pitted and halved, 1 cup sliced strawberries, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder. Mix it all together and refrigerate about 1/2 hour or more.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

TED Talk: Eating To Starve Cancer

I just ran across this TED Talk by William Li on and was hoping that you will all take a 20 minutes and 2 second break to listen to it. It's a beautiful explanation of one of the fundamental reasons that cancer can become deadly and how you can prevent it from happening.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Fitness Right In Your Own Studio

When I'm painting, I have a tendency to get so lost in my painting world that I forget I have a body that needs to stretch. Sometimes hours go by and I'm still holding the same position, often one that leads to cramped back and shoulder muscles. Well, here is the solution! Sitting on an exercise ball will remind you to take care of the position of your lower back. You should start out only using it for about 10 minutes at a time and build up to switching your usual chair for it. If you jump in too soon and use it for your whole day of painting, you'll probably get a pretty sore lower back. So be smart and take it slowly. It keeps your core toned as a great bonus!

These are some of my favorite stretches that I can do right in front of my easel.

Get yourself a stretchy band or stretchy tubing (used in physical therapy, as well as Pilates and yoga classes) and hold it over head, pulling outwards until it's stretched kind of tight. Now, keeping your arms straight, lower them behind you and stretch out your shoulders and the entire front of your upper body.

Keeping the stretchy band tight above your head and your arms straight, lean to one side and then the other, stretching your ribcage and lats.

Sitting up straight with the band held tight and in front of you, twist from one side to the other, pulling back with the back arm and front with the front arm. This gives a good rotation to the entire spine and eases tension in your upper back muscles.

Doing these types of stretches at least once an hour while you are working will make you able to do MORE PAINTINGS and you can be like Charles Schultz and create until the very end!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Leftover Challenge

We recently had a little get-together with a few friends and I bought way too much hummus (for snackin'!), and now I'm stuck with all this leftover hummus. So I thought it would be a good ingredient to use for my Leftover Challenge. The Leftover Challenge is what I do when I have some odd ingredient and I want to think of a way to use it that is new and unexpected. I thought that it would be interesting to make a variation on Shepherd's Pie, using hummus mixed with eggs instead of mashed potatoes. It was fantastic! The hummus topping came out with a texture similar to cheesecake. You could use any combination of whatever vegetables you've got on hand for the filling, but here's what I did:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Saute a mixture of chopped onions, minced garlic, and sliced mushrooms until they're pretty tender. Add a few cups of chopped fresh collard greens and about 1/4 to 1/2 cup water, cover and cook until the greens are tender (about 5-8 minutes). Add a can of kidney beans that has been drained and rinsed.

Place this mixture in a casserole dish. In a mixing bowl, combine about 2 cups of hummus with 3 eggs. Using a whisk, mix it until it's evenly mixed and liquidy. Pour hummus mixture over cooked vegetables and bake, uncovered until the topping is firm and golden brown.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


Yes, this is off-topic from health and fitness, but so what! Yesterday, Boris and I went to the Lakota Wolf Preserve in Columbia, NJ and took a whole bunch of photos of wolves for future paintings. I just love these wolves so much that I had to share this photo with all of you!

Agave AGAIN!

As many of you probably know, I like to regularly keep up with what Dr. Andrew Weil has to say about various health-related issues (why? because he's just so unbelievably smart AND flexible-minded, that's all!), and I've just read what he has to say about agave nectar (which we were discussing right here a couple of posts ago). Basically, while he may still have some reservations about it, he's not sold on the idea that it's as disastrously dangerous as Dr. Joseph Mercola writes about. If you use agave nectar or products containing it, please read both of their opinions and decide what seems right for you!