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Saturday, January 23, 2016


Well We Are Snowed In Folks, Stuck For The Duration Of The Blizzard of 2016 - What Do You Do?  Organize, Read, Stare Lovingly Into Your Partners Eyes Discussing All Your Feelings........ Ummmm NO - We Cook!

Easy Black Bean Soup

This is something that most can whip up and should have in ingredients their pantry:

LORI TAURASO, URABLANKSLATE, BLANK SLATE, CHEERS, FREDERICK MD, BLIZZARD 2016, SNOW STORM, DC, VA, MD, BALTIMORE, COOKING, HOME COOKING, BEAN SOUP, SOUP, DIET, CLEAN PROGRAM, STRIVECTIN, ANTI AGING, NYC, CILANTRO, MOMS MARKET, BLANK SLATE, LORIANNMD, BLOGGER, INSTAGRAM, IPHONE, CANON CAMERA, YOU TUBE, VLOGGER, COOKING,

You Will Need:
2 Cans Black Beans I like Goya or an organic brand
3 cloves of garlic chopped ( more to taste - we love garlic!)
1/4 - 1/2 tea crushed red pepper flakes

Base for almost all my soups - A Mirepoix Seriouseats.com about-mirepoix

2 small / med carrots rough chopped
2 stalks of celery 
1/2 med white onion (save some for garnish)

Lime - at end for garnish
Lg handful of fresh Clilantro - washed stems removed and chopped - set aside for garnish
1/2 cube Vegetable Bouillon (keep veggie, chicken or beef bouillons on hand in fridge for cooking esp. if you don't have stock or broth just add water and your set - these are highly overlooked - don't tell me I'm sure loaded with bad things.... but work out pretty good for me all these years n a pinch or just added flavor)


Saute the "mirepoix" with S&P (light on Salt - the bouillon will be your salt - promise you can always add more at the end or I prefer each person salt their own - Tabasco replace that for me too)
Turn heat to med/low add garlic & red pepper flakes (DON'T BURN YOUR GARLIC!)
Add 2 cans beans - un drained - sauté 2-3 min. just don't burn - slight boil
Add water (fill soup / spaghetti pot almost 2/3 way up - use filtered water if possible)
Crumble or chop your Bouillon add & Stir - bring heat to med - high and boil 5 min
If you are having meat add chopped raw bacon or ham for flavor and remember this will give you more salt.
Boil uncovered 5 min.  Add more H2O if needed reduce heat cover and simmer for 30 - 45 min.  Stirring occasionally 
(towards longer side if your adding bacon)
*This cooks pretty fast and with in an hour you are ready 

Serve topped w/raw onion or green onion, fresh cilantro, a squeeze of lime - maybe some sour cream as well if dairy is in your diet & dash or two or three - LOL of Tabasco.

Voila:  You have a great meal that will carry you over for days or feed a crowd - is inexpensive, quick and filling.  *Oh Yeah I have found these black bean sprouted crackers that taste like corn chips I am just crazy for.  Seriously DLISH!
URABLANKSLATE, BLANK SLATE, LORI TAURASO, LORIANNMD, FREDERICK MD, STRIVECTIN, MOMS MARKET, COMMON MARKET, BLACK BEANS, CHIPS, SOUP, WAY BETTER SNACKS, SPOUTED BEAN CHIPS
 
Day 2 it's even better - I ate this for breakfast topped with a fried egg, cilantro and my fave.... Tabasco of course!

BLACK BEAN SOUP, LORI TAURASO, URABLANKSLATE, BLANK SLATE, BLIZZARD 2016, FREDERICK MD, DC, BALTIMORE, HEALTHY EATING, DIET, BEANS, ANTIGAGING, SHOPPING, COMMON MARKET, LORI TAURASO, LORIANNMD, FREDERICK, DOWNTOWN FREDERICK, THE TASITING ROOM, COOKING SCHOOL, AMERICAS TEST KITCHEN

STAY WARM, STAY TUNED AND STAY CLASSSY!  CHEERS!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Hey There All,

It's already the middle of January and I can't believe how fast its going.  January has started off crazy getting over the flu and try to clear out my closet - streamline my wardrobe and make it all just flow.  I am so drawn to the Navy/Black combination for my clothes. It's just so easy to look pulled together, elegant and ready for anything.



I find this look great for work and easily transitions for a night out.  (Super on the fellas as well)  Plus packing for a weekend becomes a breeze.  I'll add some great little accessories to change it up or add pops of color.  Perfect for this time of year as well.  

I don't know about you but the easier the better for me and this is my year for ease...... that is the hope at least.  

I have been so busy with work, home, family it's been hard to sit still and concentrate.  Looks like 2016 for me is going full steam ahead.  Speaking of steam, I just completed organizing (almost) my storage room in the basement and getting ready to for my new sauna!  Whatttttttt?
THANK YOU SANTA!!!!!!
 I simply can't wait!  It will be about 6x8 and I'm turning the basement into a mini gym with my treadmill, weights, a Pilate's performer and now my SAUNA.  I have loved using sauna for years and it really compliments the healthy/anti aging lifestyle I try and lead.  The benefits are too numerous to list here is a link to show just a few Sauna Health Benefits

Well kids, like I said busy busy.  So off to the races today and gonna try and keep warm.  It's about 15 degrees today and we are expecting a possible blizzard this weekend - so I'll be preparing for that.  Will update ya soon.  Ck Instagram & FB etc. for closet updates and Blizzard of 2016 photos!




Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year 2016

Well We Made It!  HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!  
Here's To A Great 2016!

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I hope Santa was good to you and that you rang in the new year with ones you love.  I know I was fortunate enough to do so.

Christmas and the Holidays this were fantastic.  It started right on Thanksgiving and hasn't stopped.  Great times great family great friends and feeling very blessed and extremely thankful these days!  

Que scary music... Daa Daa Daaaaaaa However, my sister-in-law got my husband a scale for Christmas.  She gave it to him while she looked over at me and said "I hope I'm not insulting you" ........ "HUH?"  So this brings me to today's post.

New Year's is often a time of reflection "out with the old in with the new" organizing starting new good habits and while I usually don't make any grand plans New Year's day this year I think it's going to be a little different.  I tend to be a women of extremes.  I have been known to have smoothies, salads most of the day just to round it off with raw cookie dough at night. Uggg What can I say? #dontjudgeme!  

I don't weigh myself regularly - I have never owned a scale!  Frankly I don't like them or really believe in them. Well,  let me rephrase I believe in them they are real.  Ha ha but I don't think they serve a lot of good most of the time.  Especially for women - I mean look, my weight can change within a day.  Certain times of the month I can go up to 5 pounds in the blink of an eye - BAM!!!!!!  You all know what I'm talking about. So I like to go with how my clothes fit and how I feel etc.  Anyway we're putting away gifts and holiday decorations yesterday and what did  Lori do?  Get on the scale.........  Bad Move!!!  

I mean its the Holidays right?  Tons of food - cookies & desserts.  So yeah I am about 6 pounds more than I like.   This leads me to my plans for the next month or so. I will start with a juice cleanse for 3 days than go "vegan" for 6 weeks!  My daughter Chrissy is coming along with me while at college.  She has began eating healthy the past few years as well and she rarely if ever eats meat.  Mostly fish veggies grains etc.  So we will help and be each others cheerleaders - keeping on track & talk each other down off the ledge.  And I'm inviting you to come along.  Not to say that I will be crazy strict about things but I think six weeks is reasonable and if I have a huge craving then I can give in a little bit but under portion control.  

So today I start by having a green juice...."hello healthy"!
I watched Mike devour the last of our wonderful Chinese food last night - we went to our favorite place www.pekinggourmetinn.com and I did it up at lunch but that was it.  It took all I had not to join in when he dusted off the leftovers.  
Mini Dumplings We Ate Yesterday

Trying to get myself on the treadmill today - this will not be an easy task.  Crazy how the food and what you put in your body effects everything.  Mood, digestion, skin and energy.  I have ZERO today but "lets do this".  New Year - New Day!


Looking back - I went so overboard with the sugar, white flour, meat & shellfish all of it this holiday.  Boy, my body's paying for it.  Crazy because I know how good I feel when I don't eat certain things so I just will reset my body.  Plain & simple.

I will be tracking my progress, sharing recipe's and the ups and downs of this - what I learn etc.  So try it with me and lets start 2016 on a healthy note!  Share with me how you are going about making changes for the better this year - I bought this at my local Common Market Coop and took as directed last night - ** slept like a baby.


lori tauraso, blogger, blank slate, urablankslate, frederick, new year, 2016, resolutions, md, va, dc, baltimore, common market, celled, juicer, green juice, diet, anti aging, energy, exercise, treadmill, tread climber, new years day,

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Links I'm Really Loving Right Now!



HEY HEY! CK OUT LINKS I ADORE AND DESERVE SOME LOVIN' & ARE ESPECIALLY INSPIRING FOR 2016!

1.  A COUPLE COOKS - I see more posts for Mike & I......  love their wellness series ck this post out for sure - 


2.  A LITTLE TIPSY -mother of 3 creative DIY'er some great ideas for yourself or giving!


3.  ADDICTED 2 DECORATING - a interior designer - blogger - DIY site 




4.  ALMOST MAKES PERFECT - perfect is boring I say and so does Molly!  Molly also gave me ( all her readers ) a great mix list for Christmas!  Cheers



5.  SHE'S IN THE GLOW - beauty blogger I'm digging   Gonna try this beauty tip this year for sure!



6.  CULT OF PRETTY - All of it - products - reviews - pictures!  Ann Colville Somma  does it all and does it well!   Like this little preview from her blog below:




Editing some pictures and videos that I will post this weekend & forward.  Also a new health series with great recipes and skincare! (follow me to my Dr. Appt) Shopping & Home Decor.  I am really looking forward to 2016 I hope you are too!  

Monday, December 28, 2015

Yummy & Healthy Veggie Blackbean Burger


You are going to thank me later - 
these Black bean 
Veggie Burgers ROCK!

Ingredients
1 can Goya Black Beans
1 can Goya Great Northern Beans
1 small  onion
Garlic
Carrots
Celery
1 package minute rice instant rice (cooks 90 sec- great to have on hand)
Jalapeños
Veggie Stock ( low sodium )
S&P
Red pepper flakes
Almond Flour

To begin you will  sauté diced onion, carrots, and celery.  About 3/4 cup of each.  Along with 3 to 4 sliced peeled garlic cloves - do this until just tender (not over browned).  I add jalapenos to mine as well your choice!  Set aside to cool. S&P slightly while browning - to help them sweat.  Zap 1 serving of the brown rice = 1 cup or already cooked brown rice add to mixture 

In a food processor pulse 1 can of each rinsed chickpeas and black beans only slightly - you still want a bit of a chunky texture not a 
complete puree or paste.  Then mix together you sauteed veggie mixture & the beans adding S&P to taste, 1/4 cup almond flour for binding, (more or less you decide) crushed red pepper flakes, garlic powder.  Maybe a bit of low sodium veggie stock to hold as well.   You want them to be able to form patties and hold their shape. 


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At home mixing the veggie mixture
Form patties and chill 10 min - to one hour.  I use parchment paper so they won't stick.  Store in tupperware with parchment sheets between for several days and remove when ready to cook.

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Chilled Patties 

Next saute w/ olive oil over med heat til browned on both sides
transfer to preheated oven and cook for 15 min. at 400 degrees until heated throughout
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Saute in oven proof skillet 

Finally end with some Asian slaw and roasted Brussels spouts for a healthy lunch or dinner that more than satisfies!   

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The finished healthy meal - love it!  YUM

Enjoy - Cheers - Here's To Your Health

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Had to share - HOMEMADE "KIND" BARS

GOOD MORNING!  I WANT TO SHARE A QUICK EASY HOMEMADE SNACK WITH MY PEEPS.


Kind Bars, particularly the coconut and almond variety, are a great go to afternoon / anytime snack.  It was my daughter Chrissy who introduced me to them last year.  She and her boyfriend are in health mode so when I treid one I just fell in love with their chewy - crunchy texture & the sweet honey/coconut combo. I mean chocolate, nuts, carmel & sea salt are some of my favorite things.  They also cure my hunger which inevitably happen almost every afternoon. Ummm hello 2pm!  So after some reading and internet surfing I whipped homemade Kind Bars It was so easy. There are tons of recipes to choose from like :  http://www.theyummylife.com/Homemade_KIND_Barscommunity table.parade.com kelly Hunt or The Nourishing Home  Just to link a few.  

They last for several days when tucked in some tupperware or ziplock bag.  It's a great healthy late night snack, or for travel, while running around in the car & especially great after the gym! These bars are definitely going to be new staples to have on hand in our house!  Plus they are great as gifts - 
see the book FOOD, GIFT, LOVE - for creative "homemade gifts" its in the packing people, packaging!
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My own photo & great book I just added to my collection FIND IT ON AMAZON
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Photograph found on google images



For youtube healthy videos make sure to check this one out - some wonderful gluten free ideas! Kristeen Mee

Below is one recipe that I found and it worked fairly well  - since I'm lucky enough to be married to a Chef we will be tweaking some of the recipes and share with you.  Especially in the new year when we're really going to focus on plant-based meals.  

FOR NUT MIXTURE
  1. 2 cups whole roasted unsalted almonds
  2. 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
  3. 1/2 cup puffed crispy brown rice cereal
  4. 1 tablespoon flax seed meal
FOR SYRUP
  1. 1/2 cup honey**
  2. 1/3 cup brown rice syrup (may substitute light corn syrup)
  3. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  4. 1 teaspoon vanilla
I do most of my shopping for these things at our local Common Market
                                                  Instructions

  1. Grease/spray large bowl, 9x13 baking sheet/pan, wooden spoon or rubber spatula, and bottom of drinking glass. Set aside.
  2. ------------------------
  3. *IF ALMONDS AREN'T ALREADY ROASTED: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread nuts on large baking sheet and bake for 10 min. until lightly toasted and fragrant.
  4. TO TOAST THE COCONUT FLAKES: Spread coconut in single layer on baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 6-7 minutes, stirring half way through, until lightly toasted. Keep a close watch on it to avoid burning--it can go from golden to burnt quickly.
  5. ------------------------
  6. Add toasted almonds & coconut to large bowl. Add puffed rice/millet and flax seed meal. Stir to combine; set aside.
  7. In 1-1/2 or 2 quart saucepan, combine honey, rice syrup, salt, and vanilla over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until mixture reaches 260 degrees (hard ball stage) on a candy thermometer. Immediately, pour mixture over nut mixture, stir until evenly coated. Quickly transfer to greased/sprayed 9x13 pan, use hands to spread mixture evenly in pan; press the mixture to close in holes and distribute evenly all over the pan. Using bottom of greased/sprayed drinking glass to tap and compact mixture in pan. Let cool 20 minutes (pan should still be slightly warm). Invert pan on cutting board and tap until mixture falls out in one piece. Cut into 20 bars. (If they cool too much and become too hard or brittle to cut easily, put in warm oven for 1-2 minutes to soften; proceed with cutting.)
  8. Top your "kind bars" with a little  Fleur de sel.
Let me know how you like them - cheers!  

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Give Away - Just In Time For New Years Eve - Comment To Win




Feeling The Holiday Spirit & Wanna Share

Let me know how you survive the Holidays - 
To Get a Chance 2 win this great NARS matte lip pencil Iberico just in time for New Years Eve! 
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Myself I try and survive by keeping on hand:


  • detox tea
  • lots of salads
  • some form of exercise each day (min: 30 min)
  • Hot Baths (you know Im obsessed with my baths)
  •  a wee bit of chocolate everyday #dontjudgeme
  • green juices
  • 5 minute dance parties - House of Pain "jump around" my daily jam!
  •  watch a funny movie or youtube video (team coco - jim gaffagan - kevin hart - will ferrell)



PEACE OUT - HIT ME UP ANNOUNCING WINNER ON FB/TWITTER TONIGHT MAILING TOMORROW!  


Sunday, December 13, 2015

Shopping, Eating Living In Downtown Historic Frederick, Maryland

What to look for: Hip home decor - Skincare/Makeup Boutiques - Chocolates - Great Restaurants/Wine Bars.  Just tons of goodies.  Here is the rundown of some of my favorites:
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The Patrick/Market Street Corridor is home to more than just civil war history sites & our beautiful church spires.  Patrick & Market is at the center of it all, actually all of the downtown neighborhood is exploding with funky furniture stores, hip clothing shops, restaurants, wine shops, candy stores etc.  All this is making it a cool place to shop, work & live. You can shop late and get special deals and discounts on First Saturdays, this happens every month. Check the links to see updated info.  Also DOWNTOWN FREDERICK PARTNERSHIP is a wealth of info!  

Hope to see you soon in my hometown!  Tag your self in photos - say "HI" & share with me!  Cheers!