Happy Easter

 

Happy Easter

Happy Easter! I am so excited that my third cookbook, 200 Best Smoothie Bowl Recipes published by Robert Rose Books has been released! I’ll be sharing one of my favorite recipes here on the blog later this week, and will be doing a cooking segment on Talk of the Town Newschannel 5 in Nashville this coming Friday, April 1st at 11:30 a.m (if you’re in or around Nashville, please tune in). If you’re interested in ordering a copy to ship on Monday click here. To purchase on Amazon, chick here.

Thank you for your support and here’s to a Happy Easter and peace and hope throughout the world!

Slow Cooker Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Crockpot Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Now that school is starting back, having a slow cooker is a handy appliance that can be a  lifesaver. Author, Judith Finlayson shares how to create 175 different recipes in her latest book “175 Essential Slow Cooker Classics” and how easy and convenient it is. You’ll find recipes for everyday favorites to elegant entertaining as well as an array of vegetarian dishes, tips, techniques and photographs. I love this recipe for Spinach and Artichoke Dip. What a simple, brilliant recipe idea! Judith offers great tips in her cookbook. If you prefer a smoother dip, place the artichokes and spinach in a food processor, in separate batches, and pulse until desired degree of fineness is achieved. Then combine with remaining ingredients inc the slow cooker stoneware.

This recipe is fabulous for an appetizer for busy school nights, tailgating, football parties, Labor Day and more. Enjoy and be sure to check out this book at the link here.

FinalEssentialSCCover

 

Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese & 150 Best Grilled Cheese Cookbook

Who loves grilled cheese? Well, it is finally here! My second cookbook, 150 Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches is hot off the press. I am so amazed to have 2 cookbooks release in two years! You’ll find 150 Grilled Cheese Sandwiches including appetizers, breakfast, main dishes, lunch ideas, desserts and more, so there is something for just about everyone. I also have a healthy chapter with low-fat, low-carb and gluten-free options. This recipe (above) Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese is a name for a sandwich originating from Nice, France, that consists of ingredients in a Salade Niçoise. This is a twist without the hard-boiled eggs, and  it’s one of my favorite recipes in my “healthy” chapter. See this link to place an order now, and thank you for your continued fabulous support!

Photo Credit: Colin Erricson


Speaking Event Friday at Women’s Work-Life Symposium

I am so excited and honored to be speaking at this year’s 3rd Annual Women’s Work-Life Seminar Symposium in Panama City Beach, Florida. I will be accompanies by five other wonderful motivational speakers such as Lorna Owens, International Motivational Speaker and Author, Jill Nichols, Chief Operating Officer of  Vera Bradley, Jennifer Webb, Author, Speaker and Coach, Charlotte Steill, Certified Professional Organizer, and Martha Lanier, Author, triathlete and cancer and heart attack survivor. When it’s over, I am off to the beach! Have a great weekend, Alison

Weekend Inspiration: Travel, Food, Fashion and Fitness

Wow, what a week! From Disney in Orlando for Food Blog Forum to Sandestin Resort (pictured above and below) in South Walton, my kids and I have had quite the treat. I guess this is the true definition of an “awesome” spring break. Here are some inspirations from last week from my travels as well as across the blogosphere. Let me know what fun things you are doing this weekend. Have a great one, Alison

Beach Inspiration: Beaches at the amazing Sandestin 

Travel Inspiration: Gelato from Sangelato Cafe in Sandestin

Children Inspiration: We had so much fun in Disney. Especially, Leigh.

Passover Inspiration: Flourless Chocoalte Cupcakes with Marshmallow Meringue Frosting via Urban Baker

Food Inspiration: Baked Whole Wheat Banana and Chocolate Donuts from Top with Cinnamon

Easter Craft Inspiration: Glittered Easter Eggs via Martha Stewart 

Fashion and Home Inspiration: Lavender  “Apartment 34” and Whitney of “The Curtis Casa”

 Workout Inspiration via “Plus One Fitness”

Five Heath Benefits of Drinking Water

We hear it all the time-“Drink more water!” “Stay Hydrated” But WHY? I am so excited to have a guest post by Crystal Springs of Alabama on this topic. Read on… 

It all boils down to one word: Dehydration. We all know that dehydration means our bodies aren’t getting the amounts of fluids they need – we’re not replenishing what we’ve used. The effects of dehydration may surprise you though, and get you to pay attention to the old “eight glass” rule.

Depending on several variables, like weight and activity level, it takes about 60 to 80 ounces of water (7.5 to 10 cups) to replace the fluid the body naturally loses in one day. Water makes each organ in your body run the way it’s supposed to. Think of water in your body as gas for your car (just, not as thick or smelly, hopefully).

The health benefits of drinking plenty of water can’t be denied. Drinking enough water each day can lead to:

  • Fewer headaches. Ever get a mild to moderate ache in your cranium that Tylenol just won’t fix? It could be due to a lack of water in your system. Drink up to feel better!

  • More energy. When you have enough water working in all the systems of your body, your body functions better and you have more energy.

  • Better skin. Healing blemishes or reducing wrinkles from the inside out is a natural way to look better.

  • Better breath. Ever been around someone with a raging case of halitosis? It’s not pleasant. Ensure your breath is at its best by drinking enough water daily.

  • Weight loss. Having a glass or two of water before meals can help fill your tummy with liquid volume, actually helping you eat less, according to Today.

So what if you’ve got an aversion to drinking glass after glass of the clear stuff? Not to worry. According to the Mayo Clinic, food provides around 20% of your daily water intake on average, especially water-filled fruits and vegetables. And if you just can’t stomach plain ol’ water, take a look at our blog post about the best diet drink alternatives – drinks that hydrate you while giving you a little flavor.

Crystal Springs of Alabama is a home and office water delivery service, providing crisp, clean spring water right to your door. We offer individual bottles and 5- or 3-gallon jugs with coolers. For more information about our services, visit our website.

Back to School Sandwich: Lunch Box Sushi & Cookbook Giveaway

My three kids start back to school in a little over a week so I’ve been trying to get back into the groove. I try to be really creative when it comes to school lunch for two out of my three children who insist on taking their own lunch. This year, I have more than enough ideas since the release of my new cookbook, “400 Best Sandwiches: From Classics & Burgers to Wraps & Condiments”. One of our favorite recipes from the “Lunchbox” chapter is this recipe for Lunch Box Sushi. It’s really easy, healthy, fresh and kids love it. Feel free to substitute cooked chicken for the shrimp. In honor of the popular demand for sandwiches and back to school, I am giving away one copy of my new sandwich cookbook.

 

How to Enter:

1. Please leave a comment telling me your child’s favorite lunch sandwich or your favorite. This is only open to U.S residents. To earn additional entries, leave a comment for the steps below:

2. Tweet this on twitter: Check out @alisonlewis 400 recipe Sandwich Cookbook Giveaway just in time for back to school lunch ideas http://su.pr/4JG5mz

3. Follow @alisonlewis on twitter

4. Become a fan of Ingredients, Inc on Facebook

5. Stumble this post and follow me on Stumble Upon

6. Winner will be selected Thursday August 11th.

This recipe is from my book “400 Best Sandwich Recipes: From Classics & Burgers to Wraps & Condiments” 2011 by Robert Rose Inc. Reprinted with permission and photo credit by Colin Erricson.

 

Halibut with Mango and Goat Cheese

Grilling in the summer is the norm at my house. Lately, I have really been trying to get my kids to eat more fish. This Halibut with Mango and Goat Cheese recipe is one of my newest favorite creations that they really liked (can you say no leftovers?).  The combination of maple syrup and Dijon mustard flavors the fish to perfection, and it goes great with the sweet and savory mango topping made with fresh mangos, parsley, lime juice and goat cheese. This makes a great weekend night family dinner or weekend idea for entertaining with friends. Serve with a tossed salad and grilled asparagus or grilled okra for a healthy summery meal in under 35 minutes.

Book Signing Tomorrow at Birmingham Bake and Cook Company

Come see me to this Saturday, July 30th at Birmingham Bake & Cook Company from 12 p.m to 2 p.m. for food and fun.  I’ll be signing copies of my new cookbook 400 Best Sandwich Recipes: From Classics to Burgers & Wraps to Condiments. You can also try these Grilled Peach and Brie Panini Sandwiches (from my book) so come have a bite. Have a super weekend and thank you for your wonderful support!

Simple Summery Peach Pie

Living in Alabama does have its perks, especially living near easy access to fresh Chilton County Peaches. I have been visiting Durbin Farms since I was a child, and they still have the most unbelievable peaches. These peaches (below) were bigger than a softball, sweet, juicy and bursting with fresh peach flavor. A friend of mine passed me this recipe for Simple Peach Pie, and it really can’t get much easier than this. It’s fast with very few ingredients, and it was gone before I could turn around. When you have peaches this sweet, you don’t even need vanilla ice cream on the side, but it is a good addition :).