Category Archives: Vegetarian

Red & Black Bean & Rye Berry Salad (with mint yogurt dressing)

As noted in this week’s Off to Market, black beans are one of Cayuga Pure Organics top selling products. Here is a recipe for a protein-filled summer salad developed by CPO’s friend, Chef Hans Butler.

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Off to Market: Stokes Farm

One of the original farms to join New York’s Greenmarket back in 1976, Stokes Farm is a New Jersey-based and family-owned produce farm. Founded in 1873, the seventeen-acre farm is currently run by fifth-generation farmer Ron Binaghi, Jr. From April through December, you can find the Stokes Market stand at Union Square every Wednesday and Saturday, Tucker Square every Thursday and Saturday, and Tribeca every Saturday.

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Brothers-All-Natural Fruit Crisps

I know that I’ve been blogging a lot about apple-related snacks lately. And now that I think about it, I’ve blogged about Apple Pie Gum, an apple flavored popcorn, and City Snacks, which I particularly like in the apple variety. Based upon this information, one may think that I’m an apple fanatic, especially as I sit here typing this on my Apple computer, with my iPad and iPhone not far from my reach. But the truth is that my affinity for the fruit goes no further than the confines of SkinnyOffice– despite popular belief, I do not spend my free time scouring the globe for the tastiest apple-flavored snacks. All these apple snacks, and the one I’m going to introduce you to today, just seem to fall into my lap more often than they might for another person.

The way I discovered Brothers-All-Natural Fruit Crisps (the apple kind) was certainly strange. It was last winter, and I was maneuvering a wide cart through the narrow aisles of an Asian grocery store down in the Financial District. I had picked up my dried seaweed, my Hi-Chew candies, and a 1/4 pound of honey-maple turkey. And then for some reason that I still cannot grasp, I threw a small pouch of some unknown snack into my cart. Even more curious is that the package had Mickey Mouse on it, who I do not like even the slightest bit.  The Mickey snack just caught my eye, and at that moment I knew I had to have it!

M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E!

When I arrived home and tore the picture of Mickey’s head in half as I tried to reach the snack deep inside, I realized that what I had bought was just freeze-dried apples in kid-friendly packaging. They were delicious. I let each dusty sliver of apple melt on my tongue and as it transformed from crunchy to soft, I not only could taste the real apple from which it was made, but I was able to feel the texture of an actual apple too. Unlike other dried fruits, Brothers-All-Natural is light and fluffy and a bit less dense than some of it’s competitors.

Brothers-All-Natural fruit crisps only have 40 calories per pouch, and they come in ten flavors, so there is definitely a fruit crisp for every taste! It turns out that the Mickey pouch I grabbed was part of Brothers-All-Natural’s Disney Collection (they come in Princess pouches, too!) The original packaging is much more discreet…but these are so good and so low-cal that not even the most anti-Disney person on earth would be embarrassed to pull out this Mickey snack at work.


Garden Lite Vegetable Soufflé

Two amazing things have happened to me so far in 2012, and both of them happened yesterday, on January 2nd. I can’t say I’m surprised. The date was 1/2/12, and though I have never believed that dates like 11/11/11 hold any sort of significance or are the slightest bit interesting, yesterday’s occurrences may have me singing a different tune.

It wasn’t supposed to be a phenomenal day. I was in Philadelphia visiting my grandparents, and since my mom had insisted on bringing our two dogs with us on the trip, I was covered in white fur and one of the dogs clawed a hold in my tights. I know I was annoyed about the dog hair, and I was even more annoyed when we went to a diner for lunch and it took so long to get our soup that I had to really threaten the waitress. I didn’t want to have to fight with a waitress so early into the New Year, but when I finally did get my soup it was freezing, and I couldn’t hold back. “What’s your name?” I asked her. “Sarah,” she said. “Well,” I said, winding up for the big moment, “well Sarah, I’m gonna Yelp you!” It must’ve scared her a bit because she was very apologetic (though not at all faster) throughout the rest of the meal. Covered in dog hair and filled with frozen soup, my day could’ve just gone done in my personal history as a pretty mediocre day.

But then I got a text from my friend, Jess. “G- are you watching Lying Game tonight?” I nearly fell out of the car. I don’t know how I forgot. I’ve been waiting for this moment for months, since the fall finale of Lying Games way back in October. Yes, Lying Game may be part of ABC Family’s teen-heavy Monday night line-up, and I know I may be a few years out of high school, but not since season 1 of Gossip Girl has there been a show so wonderfully intriguing. I made it back to my parents’ house on Long Island in time for the show, and I am still thinking about it now, 12 hours later.

It was around 9pm last night that the second amazing event of my day happened. I was hungry while I was watching Lying Game, and during a commercial break I ran down to the kitchen for a snack. I found some weird frozen package in the freezer: Garden Lite Zucchini Soufflé. I wasn’t particularly interested in a frozen vegetable soufflé, but when one of the twins in Lying Game, Sutton Mercer, is missing one has to get back to the TV to see what happens next.  So I put the soufflé in the microwave for 3 minutes, really not expecting anything good to come from this. Boy how I was wrong. With only 140 calories, the soufflé is a good size, and it is AMAZINGLY DELICIOUS. I can’t stress this enough. It tastes creamy and like you are eating something made at a bakery. They come in many varieties– zucchini, spinach, butternut squash, roasted vegetable, cauliflower– and I can’t wait to set up a smorgasbord so I can sample them all.

I know this is a bold statement, but I think that out of all the snacks I’ve ever recommended this is the one I most wholeheartedly urge you to try. Either it was really that life-changing, or I was just too excited by Lying Games to recognize any flaws. Which is totally possible.

This will have to become my weekly Lying Game snack

GoGo Squeez Applesauce Pouches

Every weekend Elena and I have a discussion about which days we’re each going to blog for the upcoming week. Usually these discussions take place via text message, and after some negotiations (Georgia: I have to watch all the episodes of Once Upon a Time on Monday so I won’t have time to write a post Elena: Well on Monday I have to write a ukulele song and record it for my YouTube channel so I don’t have time either!) and the exchange of banter so meek it doesn’t even entertain us (Georgia: Wanna start a business? Elena: Ok, what should we do? Georgia: I don’t know, we’re not really good at anything Elena: Bat Mitzvah planning? Georgia: Dog yoga classes? Elena: Eh, I don’t feel like starting a business) we decide on our days and move on to more compelling (but equally mundane) topics.

Some weird twist of fate led to me being the assigned blogger for this Friday, and it wasn’t until late Thursday afternoon that I realized that this post would be the last for SkinnyOffice in 2011! I don’t think Elena was thinking of the date when she JUMPED at the chance to write on Tuesday and Thursday this week, because there is just no way that she would knowingly pass up having the last word of the year. But I’ll take this opportunity to speak for both of us when I say that 2011 (particularly the last few months of it) has been a great year! We started this blog as a fun side-project that both of us could look forward to working on outside of our regular work hours, and it not only met, but exceeded our expectations.

Happy New Year!!! Love, Times Square

I’m not usually a fan of New Years resolutions. I always feel that making a resolution for a new year seems a bit stupid. Wouldn’t it make more sense to just make resolutions throughout the year as we see fit? Despite my dislike of the seemingly mandated metamorphosis that we all go through each January, I’ve always been a sucker for tradition and I’ve never gotten through a New Year’s Eve without resolving to better myself in some sort of way. Last year I vowed to take on something new and exciting, and here I am, on the eve of a New Year, writing a blog post for a blog I could never have imagined a year ago! So while keeping the success last year has brought in mind, in no particular order, here are my resolutions for 2012:

1. Work harder on SkinnyOffice

2. Go to the gym more (Isn’t this on everyone’s list? Click here for some tips from Gawker!)

3. Compliment people more often (NYTimes Social Q’s said this was a good idea for a resolution)

4. Go somewhere amazingly interesting (This is right up my alley, though I assume there is no gym onboard and therefore goal #2 will have to be disregarded)

5.  Eat more applesauce

I don’t know if #4 or #5 is crazier. A train ride through the plains of Mongolia is insane, especially because I’d be willing (and would love) to go on the journey by myself. But a commitment to eat more applesauce? I’m not an applesauce fanatic. I mean, I like it, but that’s about as far as my affection for the fruit purée goes. Well that was until I discovered GoGo Squeez Applesauce Pouches. 

GoGo Squeez Applesauce is portable, resealable, and totally delicious. You can drink it à la Gogurt, but for those of us who do not like anything even remotely creamy (am I alone in this?) applesauce is a great alternative to the yogurts and cottage cheeses that are so popular. With only 60 calories a pouch these snacks are as lo-cal as they are savory!

What I’ve always found unappealing about New Years resolutions is the unlikelihood of keeping them. I mean, not a gym-goer never a gym-goer, right? Didn’t make it to Mongolia in 2011, probably won’t make it in 2012! But applesauce, and increasing my intake of it, that’s doable. Bring on the GoGo Squeez packs, 2012!!

SkinnyOffice, see you next year!

It's not Mongolia, but it is applesauce. Close enough.

SkinnySubmission: Bud Light Lime

Some advice for an office Happy Hour!

(Take this seriously, today’s guest blogger is a lawyer.) 

Ok,  here’s the thing.  I have no right blogging on Skinny Office, because I am that bitch you all hate. Skinny and munching on a Big Mac between meals.  If I feel like it, I have a candy bar or two, a loaf of buttered french bread, and then six pieces of American cheese right from the fridge.  I don’t gain an ounce.  I do not belong to a gym, and I go home if I can’t find a parking spot close to the store.   Oh, and I am 42 and have had three fat babies, and can still rock a bikini the day after four full size slices of pizza.  So what am I doing here, you ask?  It’s about beer, a subject near and dear to my size 4 heart.  That’s right, the old carb lovers best friend, the maker of beer bellies and beer goggles, and something you certainly shouldn’t be sipping at your desk at work.

Hello, delicious.

There is always happy hour, though, and today’s SkinnyOffice wants to help you make a wise choice.  Being who I am, I have never had any interest in light beer, and even more than that, I think that the social stigma associated with domestic beer makes it comparable to having no front teeth.  I prefer a Fancier beer, one I paid too much for and comes with a pretty bottle. I have never held a Budweiser in public.   However, that all changed when Bud got classy and came out with the deliciously refreshing Bud Light Lime.  It’s fantastically tasty, refreshing, and easy to drink. It has a slight lime flavor, really tastes like beer, and has no watery bitterness like a typical light.   It’s in a pretty bottle, and it’s a bonus for me cause I can drink more of them then a regular beer.  Bud Light Lime has just 4.2 percent alcohol, 116 calories per 12 ounce bottle, and 8 grams of Carbs. Compare that to a Blue Moon ( I think its feminine enough to order in public and comes with a slice of orange hanging on the glass that makes it looks like a vacation) which has 5.4 percent alcohol, 171 calories and a  13.7 grams of Carbs, and you could have four or five of these clear bottled beauties and still make it to work the next day to eat whatever SkinnyOffice recommends.  If this blog ever needs a review of bagels with cream cheese, I’ll be back.

Merry, 42, Lawyer* 

*And Georgia’s sister

SkinnySubmission: E.A.T. Chicken Vegetable Soup

New Yorkers, listen up: Carbs, even chemically-flavored ones that come in unsatisfyingly portion controlled packaging, will make you fat. Chicken broth, on the other hand, is salty and filling and is 15 calories a cup which is the same as 1.5 pieces of Orbit. And there are no noodles in the E.A.T. soup–just vegetables and CHICKEN. The only problem is that E.A.T. is located at 82nd and Madison.

Totally worth the travel time.

Yes, I understand that unless you are a nanny, dog walker, or teacher at #dalton, your office is most likely a good 30-60 blocks from here. Which means you better put down those 27 chips, stop skyping your infant nephew, and start walking bitch!

Sisi, 24, political consultant 

Spicy Hot V8

There’s this little dieting trick I’ve been using for years. It’s not exactly scientific, and the American Dietetic Association would probably issue a warrant for my arrest if they knew that I was suggesting this, but it’s really hard to eat right around this time of year and sometimes one must go to extremes to maintain their figure!

The trick is this: fill your desk drawer (or your home fridge) with snacks you DO NOT like. You may still be tempted to snack on them, but the more disgusting the snack, the less you will eat of it.

I can't eat any more of this.

Recently, a friend of mine suggested that I swap the maddeningly delicious Cool Whip I usually keep in my freezer for Marshmallow Fluff. I protested: Marshmallow Fluff is disgusting. It’s the worst food in the whole world. “That’s the point!” she told me. The next day I bought the Fluff. I was right. It is the worst food in the whole world (that is, if we can call whipped marshmallows “food”). But it was sweet enough to satisfy my craving for dessert, and I didn’t even finish the entire serving size (2 tablespoons, 40 calories) because it was too gross.

This brings me to Spicy Hot V8. I hadn’t had a can of V8 in years…until yesterday. I have very fond memories of V8– I used to drink it when I took plane rides when I was little– and when I heard that Spicy Hot V8 tastes just like a Bloody Mary without the alcohol, I ran right to the deli to buy some. Spicy Hot V8 does taste like a virgin Bloody Mary– plus the contents of a medium-sized pepper shaker.

I have a fairly high tolerance for spiciness, but Spicy Hot V8 is heat-inducing. I actually had to take off my gloves and scarf because I was sweating as I drank it. The taste of the V8 isn’t offensive like Fluff is, and the flavor of it is actually pretty good. I was able to finish the entire can, and I even enjoyed a few sips (when I wasn’t too busy wiping the perspiration off my forehead). With only 70 calories a can and a long list of nutritional advantages (2 servings of vegetables in every 8 oz. serving!), V8 is actually a healthy snack choice, while eating Fluff is no more nutritious (or delicious) than eating dog hair.

So while Spicy V8 doesn’t have the same run-for-the-hills effect as Fluff, its hotness lingers on your tongue for hours. No point in eating anything else when you can’t taste anything but pepper!

Don't say I didn't warn you

Bobbi’s Fat-Free Roasted Garlic Hummus

So it’s Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend, and I’m trying to get out of my parents’ house as fast as possible. I stuff my ten unused Thanksgiving outfit options into my suitcase, leave a couple of shopping receipts on my mother’s desk  (“You told me I could put that fur vest on your card! Don’t you remember? Well I NEED it!”), and run downstairs. Well, more like practically fall downstairs with the force of my suitcase behind me. Anyway, as I run out the door my mom hands me a Links of London bag.

The source of my mother's deceptive antics.

“Here, take this,” she insists. I stare at her with an intrigued look on my face. Did she get me that bracelet I wanted? Did Hanukkah come early? I knew I was good during Thanksgiving weekend, but I didn’t know I was THIS good. But what the hell, I’ll take it.

I get home, exhausted from a car ride with my father during which we talked about my future and career and a horrible concept called “self-sufficiency,”  and finally look in my bag to retrieve my present. Is it a new watch? No. Is it that bracelet I’ve had my eye on? No. Is it even jewelry or even from Links of London? No and no. It’s cracked pepper turkey.

The only thing more depressing than finding cracked pepper turkey when you were expecting a gold necklace is the thought of calling your mom to say, “Thanks for the cracked pepper turkey, Mom.” And who even wants to eat turkey after Thanksgiving weekend?? Well okay, I do, but she doesn’t know that.

I get into the office today, clutching my turkey in my Links of London bag, hoping that it makes me look like I casually stop by the store on weekday mornings to pick up some new jewelry all the time, and realize that I can’t eat this turkey plain, as delicious as it is. And since Georgia and I have decided to cut carbs due to the unspeakable amount of food we ate during Thanksgiving, I don’t want bread with it–I just want a condiment. And I know just the one.

I run to our SkinnyFridge and pull out Bobbi’s Fat-Free Roasted Garlic Hummus. Now, I have something to say about hummus: it is tricky. First of all, it can’t decide whether to be a dip or a condiment. It’s like, just decide, hummus! Second of all, everyone thinks it is soooo healthy just because it’s made of chickpeas, and people just looove to slather it all over their falafel and act like they are so healthy and hipster as they talk about PETA and gender bias and the problem of bourgeois hegemony–okay, so I went to Brown–but everyone is wrong, my SkinnyFriend. Most of the time, hummus is fattening and caloric and is very dangerous in uncontrolled portions. So unhealthy and SO unhipster.

It's no Links of London either, but it's very good!

But Bobbi’s hummus is fantastic-tasting and is not dangerous at all! It’s creamy and garlicky (don’t eat it before a date) and is everything one could want in hummus. It is fat-free and has only 20 calories per two teaspoons, which is AMAZING for hummus and by my calculations means there are only 240 calories in the whole container. So if you end up accidentally eating half the container when you anxiety-eat your baby carrots at 10:30 pm, no need to feel suicidal!

My rolled-up-turkey-slices dipped in Bobbi’s hummus ended up being a great carb-free SkinnySnack. PLEASE go out and try this hummus, because not only will you like it but you will also be supporting Bobbi, the mysterious mastermind behind this hummus, so that maybe she can come out with more delicious products. Thanks, Bobbi! (And okay, okay…thanks for the cracked pepper turkey, Mom.)

Hint Water

I haven’t been to the gym in days. It may actually have been an entire week since I last stepped foot on a treadmill. I couldn’t have picked a worse time to boycott working out. I mean, it makes sense to head to the gym the day after you gobble up your body weight in stuffing. Usually, just thinking about this lack of calorie-burning combined with my gluttonous calorie consumption would drive me crazy, but that was before I discovered Hint water.

My kitchen counter. Thanks, Dad!

Hint, which comes in 10 flavors, is not sweet or syrupy like other sweetened waters (I’m talking to you, Propel). There’s no way to describe the taste of Hint because the name of the beverage says it so well: it is just a hint of flavor; just the essence of blackberry or watermelon, as if the water has been infused with a lightly flavored gas.

I’ve always wanted to try a juice cleanse, but the idea of giving up solid food for days at a time is terrifying. Hint is so pure tasting though, that I often pretend it’s part of a cleanse diet. I say things like, “oh I’m just going to drink my cleanse juice,” before I slurp down a bottle (I had 4 bottles of this between 7 and 11pm last night). Of course on a real cleanse you wouldn’t be using the juice to wash down a mouthful of lasagna like I do with Hint, but hint is so refreshing that one sip will make you forget about your carb overload.

Hint is like yoga. It’s like meditating. It’s like being a Buddhist. When I drink it I am calm and clean and ZEN. It would probably benefit me to put down the Hint and head to the gym, but I just pulled a bottle of tangerine-pomegranate Hint out of the fridge, and I’m feeling more fit already.

I should start my own recycling plant in my bedroom. Here is my trash can and one badly pedicured toe.