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Recipe ReDux: Lychee Jasmine Tea

June 2014’s theme is:

Floral Flavors: Nothing brightens up a dish like a real flower! Whether you live in the northern or the southern hemisphere, edible flowers can add flavor and aroma to salads, breads, spreads, desserts or dips. Make your recipe bloom with rose water, flowering herbs, floral teas, dried lavender blossoms or even fresh flowers like nasturtiums, violets, borage, squash, sunflowers or pretty much any blossom in a vegetable garden.

I’m gonna be honest–this month has not been kind to me, (thankfully not because of anything catastrophic). Although I entertained the lovely idea of going to the farmer’s market all month, I never did get the chance to make it out there. I’ve been pulling 16-17 hour-days in my basement study hovel. While there are breaks every now and then to commiserate/trade study notes with friends, eat meals, it’s been a pretty bleak experience that I very sincerely hope will pay off when I finally take this test.

Since I couldn’t find fresh flowers, I decided to try to come up with something that I already had all the ingredients for. Thus, this recipe is almost entirely composed of care package items from my parents, and is somewhat of a cross between iced tea and fruit-infused water.

I tend to associate longan with lychee, even though they’re definitely not the same thing. Both of these can usually be found in Asian markets (of which there are none within a 2-hour radius from where I am, hence why my ingredients came from a care package that my mom sent me last month).

  • Longan is a great source of vitamin C and iron.
  • Lychee is also a great source of vitamin C, as well as B vitamins, potassium and copper.
  • Couple both of those with jasmine green tea and you pretty much have an antioxidant bomb in this drink. :O Antioxidants help to protect you from free radical degradation/damage.

Lychee Jasmine Tea

Ingredients:
-2 jasmine green tea bags
-1/4 can lychee, pureed
-dried, seedless longan
-frozen fruit (mangoes, pineapples, strawberries), or ice
-sprig of fresh mint
(~1/2 gallon water)

Instructions:
1) Boil the water, add tea bags and cover for ~5 minutes. Let it cool completely before you put it in the fridge to chill. (Remove tea bags before doing so!)
2) Puree the lychee in a blender/food processor.
3) Pour lychee puree into a tall glass, then add the tea and water.
4) Top it off with the longan, frozen fruit (or ice) and a sprig of mint!

Notes:

  • I have a hot water dispenser, so I just fill a cup with water and stick the tea bags in. This is very much to taste, so you can add more water if you find it to be too strong! I don’t own a pitcher, which is why I went with the cup method.
  • Every can of lychee I’ve ever seen comes packed in syrup, so you can choose to drain that and sweeten it later with your choice of sweetener (or not at all), or reserve some of the liquid to pour into the tea! I drained about 3/4 of the can of liquid and left the rest in so that I could get the lychee to puree properly.
  • This actually only became an iced-tea/fruit-infused water hybrid because I couldn’t figure out how to get the ice dispenser to work (too high-tech for me, clearly; don’tjudgeme), so I decided to throw in chunks of frozen fruit instead! If you like your drinks super-chilled, I suggest you actually use ice. ;)

This is what the bag of dried longan will typically look like!


As the first and only recipe challenge founded by registered dietitians, The Recipe ReDux aims to inspire the food lover in every healthy eater and inspire the healthy eater in every food lover. Thank you for visiting. We hope you enjoy!

(Please note that this is a closed link-up for Recipe ReDux Contest entries only. Any links added to this collection for non-ReDux posts will be deleted.)

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One-Pot Veggies & Brown Rice

I’ve been growing my one-pot recipe collection because of boards studying. This is a super, super versatile recipe, so have at it with the experimentation! Feel free to throw in an egg or two for protein. I didn’t only because they were back at my apartment, and we had a lot of grilled chicken, fish and steak to consume. :O

One-Pot Veggies & Brown Rice

Ingredients:
-2 cups brown rice
-1 bag frozen stir-fry vegetables
-3 cloves garlic, minced
-1 tsp ground ginger
-1 drizzle sesame oil

Instructions:
1) Wash rice and add into the rice cooker bowl.
2) Put all other ingredients into the pot. Feel free to throw in an egg or two for protein! Hit “start!”
3) Season with your choice of hot sauce.


I came across a bunch of “Would you rather?” questions over at Daily Moves & Grooves, and liked them a lot, so I’m transporting em’ here! :P I can completely see how answering these in a vlog would have been a better idea, but me + filming = not a good idea, at all, so BAM! Mass of text it is!

  • Speak another language or get a higher degree? Since I’m already working on my 4th degree right now, I think speaking another language would be awesome. Preferably Spanish, because then mayhaps California will want me back!
  • Have a beautiful singing voice or be a fantastic dancer? This is a difficult one, as two of my pipe dreams happen to be (a) singer and (b) cirque du soleil performer. I may actually have to go with fantastic dancer right now, because it encompasses several of my hobbies, as opposed to just one. (That and the fact that I’ve been told that I have a beautiful singing voice. I just lack the ability to project. :x )
  • Be a CEO of a huge company or run your own small business? Run my own small business! I feel like it’d be easier to accomplish my goals while still holding onto my values and morals.
  • Fly like a bird or teleport? Teleportation, hands down! I’d start a delivery company so I could earn enough to pay off my student loans, be able to go anywhere in the world for food…
  • Eat only sweet food or only salty food for the rest of your life? Sweet. I’m not a fan of super-salty things.
  • Do yoga or lift weights? I like them both, but…lifting weights! I want to set some state records.
  • Be a SUPER fast runner be SUPER strong? Super strong! Then I could beat some national records. >_>
  • Have 8 kids or no kids? Ahahahaha. No kids is what I want by default, so I’m most definitely sticking with that.
  • Have a small, older home with character or design a big brand new home? I want an awesome kitchen and a dance studio + fruit trees and a vegetable/herb garden in my future house. Does the “character” in the smaller older home mean that? :]
  • Watch the Today Show or Good Morning America? (I don’t think I’ve ever watched either…) I’m gonna arbitrarily pick the Today Show.
  • Watch only sports or watch only BRAVO? So…I live under a rock and had no idea what BRAVO was, so I looked it up. Based on the fact that it seems to include something-something-housewives, I’m gonna go with sports, even though I give absolutely no shits about/never watch sports (other than gymnastics).
  • Cook a romantic dinner at home or go to the nicest restaurant in town? Dinner at home! I think cooking with hypothetical romantic-partner-person would be more fun (and would also save a bunch of money).
  • Drink beer or wine? I think I am lacking in acetaldehyde dehydrogenase, so I’m gonna go with neither. If I absolutely have to choose one, I will go with whatever my company happens to want, haha.
  • Eat cookies or eat cake? Cookies because they usually don’t come with frosting. :O
  • Have only brothers or have only sisters? Brothers! That’s basically how I was raised and it was pretty awesome. I can’t really imagine having a sister.
  • Go to Africa or Asia? Most definitely Asia.
  • Eat sweet potato fries or regular fries? Sweet potato fries!
  • Own an SUV or a sports car? Mmm…for practicality purposes, possibly an SUV. But gas-guzzling! :[ Augh!
  • Have a personal chef or a personal trainer? A personal chef who’d divulge their recipes to me. I am my own personal trainer. :O
  • Sleep for 9 hours every night but no coffee, or sleep for 6 hours a night and have coffee? I sleep for 5-6 hours a night without coffee. I need more hours in a day.
  • Read a book or watch a movie? Mmm, at present, watch a movie.
  • Live on the east coast or west coast? I miss California. West!
  • Have your toenails painted or your fingernails painted? Toes! I hate feet and since I play piano, I can’t really let my fingernails grow much anyway.
  • Go to the beach or the mountains? Beach! I live in the mountains right now and it still feels weird to be landlocked.

If you’d like, join in and answer some/all of these in a post or the comments! :]

While we’re on the subject of link-ups and such, go check out Delicious Dish Tuesday over at Eat Drink & Be Mary!

Eat Drink & Be Mary

Recipe ReDux: Matcha Ice Cream

May 2014’s theme is…

Cooking with Tea: Tea cups around the world are bubbling up with bold new flavors: From cardamom chai and sencha green to bubble teas and veggie teas. We wish we could attend the World Tea Expo the end of this month – but in lieu of a plane ticket, we’ll be cooking and baking and stirring up tea-inspired healthy dishes.

So I realize that this may not look the most appetizing, but I’d been lusting after green tea ice cream for ages. (This theme could not have come at a more appropriate time. :O ) Unfortunately, I happen to live in the middle of nowhere, and the closest Trader Joe’s is approximately 2.5 hours away. (Let’s not talk about how far away the closest extensive Asian market it, or I’ll just sink into a deeper depression.) As such, on my super-quick “vacation” back to California, my friends and I gathered to make matcha ice cream. The picture at the end of this post is probably going to convince you that I do not in fact have any friends, but…I swear they exist.

This recipe is super, super simple and highly versatile. Our particular version only called for 3 ingredients, but you can change it up by throwing in all sorts of variations (e.g. frozen berries, frozen mangoes, soy milk, almond milk, avocado…).

Matcha Ice Cream

Ingredients:
-1 cup chopped + frozen bananas
-1 tsp matcha powder
-1/4 cup light coconut milk (you can use whatever kind of milk you prefer)

Instructions:
1) Blend in blender.
2) (As my friend puts it…) BAM. YOU HAVE DELICIOUSNESS.

We cooked up a feast–sushi burritos, a trough of turkey, greek yogurt mashed potatoes, gluten-free crackers with hazelnut bean dip + cucumber greek yogurt dip, steamed broccoli…


As the first and only recipe challenge founded by registered dietitians, The Recipe ReDux aims to inspire the food lover in every healthy eater and inspire the healthy eater in every food lover. Thank you for visiting. We hope you enjoy!

(Please note that this is a closed link-up for Recipe ReDux Contest entries only. Any links added to this collection for non-ReDux posts will be deleted.)

Banana Pudding

I had a box of reduced fat vanilla wafer cookies that I got for 59 cents some time ago, so I decided to make banana pudding to go along with it! I’ve been contributing to church potlucks in an effort to be less of a freeloader and also so I can empty out my apartment a little more speedily.

Banana Pudding

Ingredients:
-2 12.3 oz boxes of organic firm Mori-Nu tofu
-4 ripe bananas, mashed
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-4 tbsp coconut butter, melted
-dash of salt

Instructions:
1) Melt the coconut butter and blend everything together in a food processor or blender.
2) Add milk of choice if you want a thinner pudding consistency!
3) Serve with vanilla wafer cookies!

Banana Almond Microwave Muffin

From start to finish, this took under 5 minutes to make! :] It may not look the most appetizing, but it’s great as a grab-and-go breakfast. I threw all the ingredients into a mug before going to school for my morning workout, microwaved it and bam! There you go. :O I didn’t want to microwave it for much longer, lest it get all dry and difficult to eat. Two minutes seems like the perfect consistency–moist and tastes just like banana bread (which it pretty much is)! The guy sitting next to me asked if that’s what it was and said it smelled amazing.

This is another one of those crazy meal-replacement calorie bombs, but…so many nutrients and good fats! :] It’s much better than many alternatives out there!

Banana Almond Microwave Muffin

455 calories, 35g CHO’s, 22g fat, 32g protein, 6g fiber, 126mg sodium!

Ingredients:
-1/4 cup almond meal
-1 scoop Designer Whey French Vanilla protein powder
-1 egg
-1 banana, mashed

Instructions:
1) Mash the banana and mix everything together in a microwave-safe mug.
2) Microwave for 2 minutes.

A pretty spring sunset from outside the gym the evening before! :]