Love Potion for Valentine’s Day

With Valentine’s Day approaching, we turned to our favorite herbalist Stephanie Tourles (creator of our Essential Facial Oils), for some festive recipes with aphrodisiac appeal.

This Lime-Mint Fizz is from her latest book Making Love Potions available here. The book blends the perfect balance of potions, poetic insight, and fabulous illustrations that make it a joy to look at and read. It includes all things for lovers from libations to lip balms, from massage oils to mouthwatering body butters, and perfumes that evoke passion.

This sparkling, hot pink drink is sort of a cross between a limeade and a mojito. Romantic, refreshing, and not overly sweet. It even leaves your mouth feeling minty so you can pucker up confidently. Substitute champagne for the seltzer for an elegant cocktail to celebrate with your lover.

Lime-Mint Fizz with Cranberry Ice
 
Simply gorgeous, this sparkling, invigorating, hot pink drink gets sweeter as the cranberry cubes melt, which is a most pleasant treat.
Author:
Recipe type: Sparkling Beverage
Ingredients
  • Cranberry juice
  • 10 fresh peppermint leaves, or 2 drops peppermint essential oil
  • Juice of 2 limes (about ⅓ cup)
  • Plain seltzer or sparkling water
  • Lime slices, fresh cranberries, or mint sprigs, for garnish
Instructions
  1. Fill two ice cube trays with cranberry juice and freeze.
  2. To prepare the drinks, you'll need two tall glasses. Finely chop the mint leaves, and divide them between the glasses (or put 1 drop of essential oils in each glass).
  3. Generously fill the glasses with cranberry ice cubes, then ever-so-slowly drizzle half of the lime juice over the ice in each glass.
  4. Top off the glasses with seltzer, and garnish with slices of lime, whole cranberries, or mint sprigs, if desired.
Notes
Try substituting champagne for seltzer for an elegant cocktail.

 

Excerpted from Making Love Potions, copyright Stephanie Tourles, used with permission from Storey Publishing

Romantic Essential Oils

Not only do our Essential Facial Oils make you glow, the essential oils formulated by esthetician, herbalist, and aromatherapist Stephanie Tourles, are irresistibly seductive and known for their aphrodisiac effects.

Lavender’s floral fragrance is attractive to both sexes, but one study found lavender to be the most arousing smell there is for men. It has relaxing, calming, and soothing effects.

Frankincense and myrrh are warm, rich, spicy and sweet, known for calming and deepening the breath, and making us more present with those we love.

Rose Geranium and Palmarosa are uplifting, gently stimulating, and sensual.

Australian Sandalwood is woody and musky with a spicy top note. It’s known to relieve tension and anxiety.

All of these herbs and oils have long been used as perfumes for lovers, not to mention they are equally potent in protecting and healing skin from within.

 

 

Superfood Oatmeal with Berries and Maple

One of my favorite go-to breakfasts in the winter is oatmeal. It’s a warm, filling comfort food that actually gives me energy to use throughout the day.

But not just any oatmeal will do. I like to amp mine up with tons of mix-ins and toppings that add flavor and texture and make it even more nutritious. Plus, with just a hint of sweetness from the maple, it satisfies my sweet tooth to double as a bedtime snack.

 

 

 

Berries are the lowest in sugar and highest in antioxidants, so they’re a great fruit to start the day. Almonds, chia and protein powder all add protein to give you energy and keep you full longer. Plus, chia seeds have healthy omega-3s (like in olive oil!) and help you detoxify. Coconut adds a nice flavor and texture. Cinnamon balances blood sugar, and the collagen helps heal our gut and joints. Grass-fed butter adds a healthy fat and that touch of saltiness all sweet treats need.

So ditch the sugary cereals, and try this oatmeal you’ll want to come back to over and over again.

This recipe is so easy, I don’t even measure, but you can start here and then customize based on your personal favorites.

Superfood Oatmeal with Berries and Maple
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A comforting, filling breakfast with tons of mix-in to give you a boost of energy for the day.
Author:
Recipe type: breakfast
Serves: 1 serving
Ingredients
  • ½ cup organic quick oats
  • water or milk (or milk alternative)
  • ½ cup mixed berries
  • ¼ cup slivered or chopped almonds
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut
  • 1 tablespoon protein powder
  • 1 tablespoon collagen powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon maple
  • 1 tablespoon butter
Instructions
  1. Combine dry ingredients in small saucepan over medium heat. Add enough water or milk to cover the mixture and stir occasionally, adding more water depending on what consistency you like. Stir in butter. Serve in a bowl and drizzle with maple syrup. Top with additional chia, coconut, almonds, or berry for garnish.

 

 

One Pan Moraccan-inspired Lemon Olive Chicken

Ah, one pan. Music to my ears. It seems I have made it my life’s mission to show people that cooking healthfully is not some huge, unattainable chore. I love finding and creating recipes that come together quickly, have easy-to-find ingredients, and don’t use every dish in the house to make.

So, I was intrigued when I found this One Pan Moroccan Chicken from A Communal Table. I made a few adaptations and shared my version below.


This dish starts with brining the chicken in our Lemon Garlic dressing, then adds rich depth of flavor from sautéing onions in spices such as ginger, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, and turmeric, long known for their healing properties. The warming spices are grounding for wintertime and make a delicious sauce (no seriously, I licked the pan it was so good) that is best soaked up with rice.

Related: Using Healthy Harvest Greek adds a ton of health benefits to your dish!

This dish would make the perfect Valentine’s Day main course. It is quick and easy, yet tastes exotic and looks beautiful. And best of all it won’t stress you out!

Then, after dinner, cleanse your palette with this Love is in the Air Lime-Mint Fizz cocktail before things heat up.

One Pan Lemon Olive Chicken
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2-4 servings
Ingredients
  • ½ cup Healthy Harvest lemon garlic dressing (or green olive brine)
  • ½ lemon, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons Healthy Harvest extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 medium sized organic chicken thighs (any cut will do, but dark meat adds amazing flavor)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 medium yellow onions, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup water
  • ¾ cup Healthy Harvest green olives
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
Instructions
  1. Marinade chicken breasts in Lemon Garlic dressing if desired. This is optional but will help keep the chicken juicy and flavorful. We prefer skin on for the incredible flavor it adds.
  2. Heat a large saute pan with a lid over medium high heat. Add the lemon slices and cook until slices are caramelized. About 3 minutes. Remove the lemon slices and reserve.
  3. Heat 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat, and add the chicken, skin side down.
  4. Cook for 3- 5 minutes until chicken is browned. If chicken releases easily from the pan, it's ready to turn. Turn chicken and cook until remaining side is browned. Remove chicken to a plate and set aside.
  5. Add remaining 1 Tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and translucent.
  6. Add the garlic, ginger, paprika, cumin and turmeric, and cinnamon. Stir for about 1 minute.
  7. Add the water and stir, scraping up the brown bits on the pan.
  8. Add the chicken pieces back to the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  9. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
  10. Remove the lid and add the olives and fresh lemon juice.
  11. Serve over couscous or rice.
  12. Garnish with the lemon slices and fresh parsley.

So, with one-pan cleanup and most likely ingredients on hand, what have you got to lose?

Healthier Resolutions? Eat These Foods to Detoxify

If you’re like us, you probably strive to take better care of yourself and your family year round. But with the holidays behind us, now is as good of time as ever to kick-start healthy habits.

And no, that doesn’t mean starving yourself or spending a ton of money on supplements. Just adding a few of these readily available fruits and vegetables into your weekly menu can help boost your energy and detoxify your body.

Cinnamon – Put a dash of cinnamon in your coffee or oatmeal to help balance blood sugar.

 

 

Ginger – Ginger has been used thousands of years for its medicinal benefits. Add it to soups, curries, tea or smoothies and it can improve your digestion, speed up your metabolism, and break down and eliminate toxins.

Pineapple – Enjoying this tropical fruit gives you digestive enzyme that helps cleanse your colon and improve digestion.

 

Beets – A long-time favorite of juicers, beets help flush your liver and gallbladder. Try roasting them with other roots veggies or enjoying over a salad.

 

Sesame Seeds- Sprinkle them on salads or use tahini in your homemade hummus to support the liver.

 

Onions and Garlic- How beautiful is it that something you likely cook with every day can be so good for you? Onions are high in sulfur which helps detoxify the liver, as well as flush out heavy metals. Garlic also stimulates the liver, as well as providing antibacterial and antifungal properties.

Cilantro – You can top just about any dish with fresh cilantro for a boost of freshness and color. Plus, it helps eliminate heavy metals

 

Lemon – Drinking hot lemon water first thing in the morning is a great way to jumpstart your metabolism, aid digestion, and purify your blood.

 

Apples – Apples give us lots of fiber and help stimulate bile production, which the liver uses to release toxins. The soluble fiber in apples, pectin, is helpful in removing heavy metals and food additives from our bodies. Be sure to eat only organic apples, as conventional apples are some of the most heavily-sprayed foods around.

Green Veggies – The chlorophyll that makes plants green rids the body of environmental toxins, heavy metals, herbicides, and pesticides. Aiding in detox, increasing oxygen content, and purifying the blood, greens are key at every meal.

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-7748/top-10-foods-for-detoxing.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/03/25/15-detox-foods_n_2950173.html

Smaller Harvest Leads to Worldwide Price Increase

As the 2016 harvest season comes to a close this month, olive production is reportedly down worldwide. Citing factors such as adverse weather and an infestation of the olive fruit fly, nearly all of the world’s top olive oil producing countries have shown a decline in quantity, despite maintaining high quality.

“a 14-percent drop is expected in the worldwide production, with Italy showing 49% declines”

The climate has proven to be a double-edged sword with droughts harming some olive trees, while heavy rains favored conditions for the harmful olive fly in other regions. Adding to this, the disease which killed 14 million trees in Italy in 2015 has reached Spain, causing uncertainty for the coming years.

“In accordance with to the latest data provided by the International Olive Council, a 14-percent drop is expected in the worldwide production…with a drop of 6 percent in Spain, 19 percent in Greece, 14 percent in Portugal, 29 percent in Tunisia, 15 percent in Morocco, 18 percent in Argentina.” (Olive Oil Times) Italy has been hit the hardest, with a 49% reduction, resulting in an astounding 70% price increase.

By comparison, Greece remained fortunate with a 19% decline. However, this has led to a 21-25% increase in price.

What that Means for Healthy Harvest

Due to the shortage of oil and a 25% price increase from our producers, we are forced to adjust our prices for 2017. As a four-person family business, we do our best to keep our prices as low as possible so that we can make REAL extra virgin olive oil and all of its health benefits accessible to families. However, in order to stay in business and continue to be your trusted source for purity, we simply cannot absorb such a dramatic increase.

It is unlikely that national brands will raise their prices, as most olive oil sold in stores is adulterated with cheaper, refined oils such as corn, canola, and soybean oil.

The new prices will take effect Thursday, January 12. We want to extend our deepest appreciation for your patronage and loyalty and look forward to serving you for years to come.

Sources

Difficult Harvest in Italy Leads to Higher Prices

World Olive Oil Production Drops Sharply