Slow Cooker Indian Chicken Kheema with Peas

If there was ever a New York City neighborhood that represented the concept of “high high’s, low low’s” in real estate form it would be Murray Hill.

The area, in the east 30’s of Manhattan, is home to the highest per capita of 22-year-old former frat boys, turned first year analysts. It is also home to the highest per capita of Indian restaurants and specialty food stores, for which it has also been dubbed Curry Hill.

A tale of two cities, indeed: of blocks defined by either biryani or Buck Hunter. I think you know which one I prefer.  Continue reading

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#4WeekstoWellness: A Roadmap for Bettering Your Relationship with Endometriosis, One Day at a Time with Jessica Murnane

The idea for my wellness project entered my life when I was at a loss.

After years of denial, it was finally clear that many of the symptoms I was suffering from—crushing fatigue, numb appendages, prepubescent-level acne, and menopausal-grade hot flashes, to name a few—were a result of my Hashimotos Thyroiditis.

I had started doing my own research and tracking down sound, holistic medical advice. In other words, I was ready to heal. But once the laundry list of dietary labor and lifestyle measures that were required to do so were in my hand, I wasn’t sure if I was ready to change.

Some people who approach habits with more of an all or nothing attitude may have no problem turning their lives upside down overnight. For me, it was just too much all at once. I felt like a failure for the advice I didn’t heed, and worried that the few things I did adopt were only a drop in the bucket. Continue reading

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A Healthy Hedonist’s Guide to Paris: Gluten-Free Eats + Sights in the City of Love

I’m usually not that into Hallmark holidays, but this year, for whatever reason, when Charlie told me he’d be traveling on Valentine’s Day, I got a little diva-like pit in my stomach.

I pictured myself sitting alone watching Sandra Bullock reruns with a 3-course meal of matcha truffles, modestly-priced steak, and salted caramel pudding. Then I immediately moved on to a superior alternative that made me a lot less sad: having dinner with my OG Valentine, my dad.

I don’t know why I cared so much about doing something special this year, when on most other Valentine’s Days my preference is to avoid prefix menus like the plague and do nothing at all. But I’m sure it has something to do with having the volume turned up on my book vulnerability and hustle that has me craving an evening of being coddled and pampered. Other sugar daddy to the rescue!

The biggest reason I can’t give Charlie a hard time is because for my birthday this year, he already showered me with the most romantic gift a girl could ask for: a long weekend trip to Paris. Had he pulled that super Romeo move on me on February 14th, I probably would have rolled my eyes and barfed a little in my mouth (diva!). But in November it was the perfect gift. And come December, when we finally woke up on the tarmac of Charles de Gaulle airport, it was the beginning of the most make-out and food-filled trip I’ve taken in adult life. Continue reading

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Beyond the Filet: An Ethical Butcher’s Guide to Cheap Cuts of Beef

Project elimination diet has forced me to grapple once again with my red meat consumption.

An uptick in carne is the price that many paleo, Whole30 folk have to pay when shifting our carb intakes to other food groups. And price is the operative word. No matter where your beliefs fall on the vegan-paleo continuum, it’s hard to argue that the further you move away from humble plant-based ingredients, the more money tends to get dropped on your grocery bill.

Last week, I shared some tips on Greatist.com for how to be a conscious meat eater without blowing your budget at the supermarket. One of them was to think beyond the filet mignon. And since Valentine’s Day, our star steakhouse holiday, is swiftly approaching, I thought we could do a bit of a deep dive on the subject.

Because there’s nothing romantic about going broke at the butcher counter in the name of love, capiche?  Continue reading

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Easy 5-Ingredient Matcha Panna Cotta with Muddled Raspberries

I’m reaching the final stretch of my elimination diet, which that means desserts like these matcha panna cotta cups are just around the corner. But having the finish line in sight just made last night’s finger food spread that much more tempting.

Super Bowl feasting is far easier when you’re not temporarily taking corn, tomatoes and cheese off the table. Charlie and I posted up in front of the coffee table crudité section and performed some surgical-level guacamole dipping to avoid those flecks of nightshades. But my resolve started to slip when a passed bowl of jelly beans reached my lap.

Not even Gaga’s superhuman stamina and airborne musical talents could distract me from the urge to shovel those multi-colored, iridescent pellets of joy into my mouth. Continue reading

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Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Sriracha Aioli (Video + The Wellness Project Sneak Peak!)

Things are getting real over here in bookland.

You may recall my coffee shop ugly cry from a few weeks ago, when I finally handed in the acknowledgments section along with the copyedited manuscript. Well, that has been followed by a gentle and consistent wave of the anxiety shivers!

I didn’t think that the vulnerability I experienced during the editorial process could be matched. But it turns out when it comes time to share all the blood, sweat and tears you put on the page with others, similarly uneasy tingles emerge in the belly region.

I’ve been trying to remind myself what my father always told me growing up: you’re not nervous, you’re excited! Continue reading

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Slow Cooker Lentil Chili with Black Beans, Pumpkin, and Kale

One of the first blog posts I ever wrote, way back in 2008, was about chili.

In a cozy corner of my 4th floor walk-up, I had hatched the idea to challenge my friend Keith to a chili cook-off. No doubt wine or beer was involved, which had made both of us extra braggadocious. And as a result, two weeks later, 40 of our closest friends and allies crammed their way into said 4th floor walkup to sample two dueling chilis.

We each presented our pots, and right away, a subtle gasp erupted from Keith’s corner. Those with a male genitalia looked at each other in horror, and whispered in full outdoor voices: “a vegetarian chili?!! No she didn’t…”Yes. I. Did. Continue reading

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5 Thyroid “Super” Foods to Try in 2017

How is January treating my healthy hedonists so far? Are you still waking up early to go to the gym? Staying dry and tequila-free? Or have you broken your elimination diet by eating an entire bag of Swedish fish at the women’s march…?

Despite the gummy seafood, I’d give myself a solid B+ for my efforts amid all these restrictions, since as you know, restrictions aren’t really my style. Which is why I want to take a minute to focus on what I’m adding more of, instead of just what I’m taking away.

So let’s talk about some thyroid-friendly “super” foods, shall we? Continue reading

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Paleo “Ramen” Burgers with Parsnip Noodle Buns

We gluten-free folk aren’t ones for food trends. (Unless, of course, said trend is going gluten-free).

Usually the latest and greatest craze involves something ridiculously carby and delicious that makes me want to cry into my soggy slices of Udi’s, and drown my sorrows with a trough of Frosé or Red Wine Hot Chocolate (depending on the season). Such was the case of the ramen burger. And those jerks had the audacity to set up shop just three short blocks from my apartment this summer. Rude!

For those of you who don’t know, a ramen burger is just your run-of-the-mill burger patty sandwiched between a not-so-ordinary bun made out of pan-fried nests of ramen. The ramen burger is both glutenous and gluttonous, and at the time of its ascension, when every hipster in my neighborhood was frolicking in their shortalls toting one, a serious object of my food envy.

But now the Brooklyn Flea has fled for the season, and I’m having the last laugh with my very own tray of homemade paleo ramen burgers. Continue reading

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