Foodie Friday for Sprouts

Remember those amazing, FREE blackberries from earlier in the week? Well they make a vibrant, deliciously purple smoothie! 


1 ripe banana
About 1 Cup fresh blackberries
A handful of fresh kale
Almond milk (or milk of choice) to cover

Just toss it in the blender and blend until smoothie consistency. Pour over a few cubes of ice in a clear glass, add a favorite straw and enjoy!


A Quick Thrifty Thursday


Go-Lean Instant Hot Cereal or Granola Bars 6.7-17.5 oz, $2.99$1 offKashi cereals (mambo sprouts booklet)
$1 off Kashi GoLean cereals, Kashi booklet

* There are lots of other great deals this week but I am out of town so you'll have to share with me too! Be sure to check out the farmer's markets, lots of great, colorful produce is in now. And if you're in downtown Columbia the USC Greene St. Healthy Carolina Market is back on Tuesdays.


Wild Edibles: Streetside Blackberries

Jackpot! This past Saturday while yard saling with friends we saw wild growing blackberry bushes and I swore that I would go back to pick some. Well this afternoon while the sprouts napped and daddy recuperated from youth kickball I went picking. It was SO worth it! You could tell that they had not been treated with anything not only from the location but from the "wildness" of the bushes. And organic blackberries in the store normally cost AT LEAST $4.00 for a  tiny little clam-shell! These are organic, local and best of all....FREE!

So next time your a passenger while out driving keep your eyes open, you never know where you might find a ripened treasure!


Meatless Monday

My blogging buddy at Go Famously Green introduced me to a great site today that I just had to share, Love Food Hate Waste. It's a great site for ideas on using up your leftovers and on how to make your food last longer. Hope you enjoy this discovery as much as I do!

And here is a recipe for those participating in Meatless Monday (one of my favorites from my time in Costa Rica) PURA VIDA! :

Gallo Pinto (beans and rice) Recipe (recipe from here)

1 lb (450 gr.) Black beans. Fresh are best but most likely you’ll find them dried.
8-10 sprigs cilantro (coriander leaf) fresh or frozen, not dried!
1 small or medium onion
½ small red or yellow sweet pepper (optional)
3 cups (700 ml) chicken broth or water
2 cups (350 ml) white rice
½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt
1 Tablespoon (15 ml) vegetable oil
1-3 Tablespoon oil to fry the Gallo Pinto

If beans are dried, cover with water and soak overnight, if they are fresh, just rise them off. Drain the beans and add fresh water to an inch (2.5-cm) above the top of the beans, salt, and bring to a boil. Cover the pan and reduce heat to very low simmer until beans are soft (~3 hours).

Chop cilantro, onion, and sweet pepper very fine.

Add 1 Tablespoon oil to a large pan and sauté the dry rice for 2 minutes over medium high flame then add half of the chopped onion, sweet pepper and cilantro and sauté another 2 minutes. Add water or chicken broth, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to simmer until rice is tender (20-35 minutes). This is also the recipe for Tico rice used in other favorites like tamales.

Once the rice and beans are cooked you can refrigerate or freeze them. Keep a significant amount of the “black water” with the beans (½-1 cup 120-240 ml). This is what gives the rice its color and some of its flavor. Sauté the rice, beans reserved chopped onion, sweet pepper and cilantro together in vegetable oil for a few minutes. Sprinkle with a little fresh chopped cilantro just before serving.

Once the rice and beans are cooked you can also refrigerate or freeze them. Make up small batches of Gallo Pinto when you want it by simply sautéing them together.

In Guanacaste they sometimes use small very hot red peppers instead of or in addition to the sweet. Some people add a tablespoon or so of salsa Lizano or Chilera to the beans while they're cooking. Our friend Mercedes always simmered the beans very slowly all-day and preheated the water or chicken broth for the rice.


Sunday's Eco Inspiration

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. " -Anne Frank