Empire Update: WK of 11/2
Roasted Brussel Sprouts & Cinnamon Butternut Squash with Pecans and Cranberries
This is a healthy, delicious dish that brings a lot of beautiful color to the table! It's super easy to make and is a nice side to bring if you are a guest. It obviously is a good source of vegetables, but did you know using pure maple syrup (it should say it's pure on the bottle) gives you an extra dose of antioxidants and minerals? Enjoy!
3 cups brussels sprouts, ends trimmed
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt to taste
roasted butternut squash:
1 1/2lb butternut squash peeled, seeded and cubed into 1 inch cubes (about 4 cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups pecan halves
1 cup dried cranberries
2-4 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1. Toss brussels sprouts in olive oil and salt. Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 minutes.
2. Toss cubed butternut squash in olive oil, maple syrup and cinnamon. Roast in preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 minutes.
3. In a large bowl, combine roasted brussel sprouts, roasted cinnamon butternut squash, cranberries and lightly roasted pecans.
4. Add a small amount of maple syrup and toss it-enjoy!
Top 5 Ways to De-Stress before the Holidays
1. Make a gratitude list: Jot down 3 things your grateful for first thing in morning. It can be as simple as your morning cup of coffee, but it helps to set a grateful intention for the day & help us look on the bright side.
2. Go for a walk: A quick 20-30 minute walk can go a long way towards shaking off anxiety. Listen to your favorite music or simply enjoy the nature around you!
3. Turn off your phone: Not only does the blue light from phones keeps us awake longer, the constant stimulation can put our brains into overdrive. Aim to turn your phone off at least an hour before you go to bed.
4. Exercise: Exercising regularly isn't just great for your physical health. It releases endorphines (a hormone) which promote a feeling of well-being.
5. Stretch: Same idea as exercise-stretching is great to prevent injury, but also is a great way to relax and have a slower, mindful moment. Need an idea of where to start? Try our stretching video below!
Stretch of the Week: Low Back Seated Stretch
Empire Update WK of 10/26
Sweet Potato Blondie Bars
With trick-or-treating looking a little different this year, you may be in the mood to make the kiddos a special dessert. These blondie bars are perfect: delicious, made with healthy ingredients and they sneak in some vegetables too!
1/3 cup pureed or mashed sweet potato
1/4 cup almond butter
1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (or 1 can)
1/3 cup pure maple syrup, agave or honey
1/4 cup flour (white, oat, spelt, almond, etc)
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp baking soda
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
optional 1/2 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350F. Line or grease an 8 x 8 pan.
Drain and rinse the beans well and then process all the ingredients in a food processor or blender (except chocolate chips) until completely smooth.
Stir in chips
Spread batter into pan, press a few chocolate chips on top and bake on center rack for 28 minutes.
Bars will be warm & gooey when you take them out but firm up as they cool.
Store in fridge for best freshness.
H A P P Y H A L L O W E E N!
We hope everyone has a safe and spooky weekend! Send us your families Halloween photos to be featured in next weeks newsletter!
Workout of the Week: Cervical Extension
The Empire Update: Week of 10/19
Crispy Sheet Pan Gnocchi & Veggies
Do you have 30 minutes? Than you have plenty of time to throw together this easy, delicious weeknight dinner that is filling thanks to the gnocchi and healthy thanks to all the vegetables! You can use fresh or frozen gnocchi for this recipe and whatever vegetables you like to roast in the oven.
1 pounds fresh or frozen gnocchi
1 (12-ounce) bag mixed bell peppers, cut into 1 inch chunks
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes
1 small red onion, cut into 1 inch chunks
4 garlic cloves, smashed
1 teaspoon coarsely chopped fresh rosemary
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped basil leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
Grated parmesan cheese, for serving
1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 450 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Place the gnocchi and all the veggies in a large bowl and toss with olive oil. Spread on baking sheet.
3. Roast 18-20 minutes, stirring halfway through, until gnocchi are plump and veggies are tender.
4. Spoon into bowls, garnish with basil and grated cheese. Enjoy!
Fast 5: Book Recommendations!
As the weather gets cooler and we spend more time indoors, it's a great time to pull out a good book! We asked around to see what everyone is reading lately.
These are some good gift ideas too as we head towards the holidays ;-)
1. If you're a history buff like our PT Liz, try Cleopatra, by Stacey Schiff
"It's an entertaining look into her life!"
2. If you are trying to de-stress like our front desk Ashley, try Full Catastrophe Living, by Jon Kabat-Zinn.
"It's about how to apply mindfulness and meditation to your everyday life-super interesting"
3. If you enjoy a good murder mystery like our patient Maureen, try the Donovan Creed series by John Locke.
"It's funny and keeps you on the edge of your seat!"
4. If you're looking for productivity hacks like Tony, try Living with the Monks by Jesse Itzler.
"It's shows how to better manage your time by turning off your phone"
5. If you're trying to push past your limitations, try Endure by Alex Hutchinson.
"If you want to gain insight into the mind of great athletes, adventurers, and peak performers than prepare to be enthralled"-Bear Grylls
Stretch of the Week: Chin Tuck w/Lift Off
The Empire Update: Week of 10/12
Easy honey sesame salmon in foil
With the kids back to school, coming up with quick and easy weeknight meals can be tough. This delicious salmon recipe is ready in under 20 minutes and is baked in foil to make for easy clean-up. The salmon is healthy but the honey garlic sauce makes it's delicious!
1/3 cup honey
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Sriracha
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
2-3 pound salmon
Salt, to season
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with enough foil to fold over and create a packet
2. In a small saucepan, combine honey, soy sauce and butter over low-medium heat and whisk until the honey has melted and mixture is well combined.
3. Take off the heat and add in lemon juice, garlic, vinegar, Sriracha, sesame oil, ginger and sesame seeds. Set aside 1/4 cup of sauce for later.
4. Place salmon onto prepared baking tray and season with salt. Pour honey sesame sauce over salmon. Fold the sides of the foil over the salmon to cover and completely seal the packet closed.
5. Bake until cooked through (12-15 minutes, depending on thickness). Open foil and broil for 3-5 minutes under medium heat to carmelize the top. Pour extra sauce over the top and enjoy!
Top 5 Immunity Boosting Foods
With cold & flu season around the corner, try incorporating these foods into your diet to help keep your immune system strong all winter long!
1. Citrus fruits: You probably already know this one, but the Vitamin C found in citrus fruits like grapefruit, oranges, lemons and clementines is a powerful antioxidant and increases the amount of white blood cells we have, which strengthens our immune system. A little known fact is that the more Vitamin C we consume, the less we absorb, so no need to take a crazy amount of supplements to beat a cold. The recommended daily amount for most people is 75-90 mg/day and can be achieved by regularly eating citrus is your diet.
2. Broccoli: You probably can already guess that broccoli is super healthy for you: it contains antioxidants A,C & E as well as the super antioxidant/detoxifier Sulforaphane (it's a mouthful!). But did you know the healthiest way to eat it? Technically, raw broccoli is able to retain the most of it's nutrients, but steaming it is second best.
3. Garlic: Garlic is healthy for your heart & helps fights infections. Most people have a lot or hate relationship with it, but a little goes a long way!
4. Almonds: Almond are another great source of Vitamin E, which is a vitamin that needs fat to be absorbed. Since almonds also just happen to be a great source of (healthy) fat, it's the perfect immune-friendly snack!
5. Turmeric: Ever wondered what gives curry sauce its bright yellow color? It's probably turmeric-a bright yellow spice used commonly in Indian cuisine. It's an excellent anti-inflammatory and tastes great sprinkled over eggs or roasted veggies.
Stretch of the Week: Chin Tucks
Empire Update: Week of 10/5
Stuffed Acorn Squash
Have you ever heard of "super-foods"? It's used to describe foods that are extremely nutrient dense. I try to include at least one at every meal. This seasonal dish is delicious and includes 5 of them! The kale, quinoa, cranberries, squash and olive oil are excellent sources of fiber, healthy fats and anti-inflammatory compounds called carotenoids. Enjoy!
For the squash:
2 large acorn squash
1 TBSP olive oil
salt & pepper
For the filling:
1 TBSP olive oil
1/2 small yellow onion, diced
3/4 cups quinoa
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper, to taste
3 cups loosely packed chopped kale
3/4 cup roasted and skinned hazelnuts, roughly chopped
1/4-1/2 cup dried cranberries, to taste
For the squash:
Preheat over to 400 degrees and halve the acorn squashes lengthwise down the middle.
Scoop out the seeds.
Place squash cut-side up on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.
Sprinkle generously with salt & pepper for about 45 minutes, or until squash is fork tender.
For the filling (prepare while squash is cooking):
1. In a large skillet, heat 1 TBSP olive oil. Add the onion and cook for about 5 minutes, or until softened and translucent. Add the kale and let cook for another minute or two, until slightly wilted.
2. Add the quinoa, salt, pepper and water. Bring to a simmer, then cover and reduce the heat to low. Let cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender. Remove the lid and fluff with a fork.
3. When the squash have finished roasting, stir the hazelnuts and cranberries into the filling and spoon into the center of each squash.
4. Return the squash to the oven for another 5-10 minutes. Serve hot.
Fast 5: Beginner Running Tips with Tony!
Exercise of the Week: Shoulder Shrugs
Dr. Tony Tanzi: Physical Therapist, Triathlete, Runner, Performance Coach