Category: Fresh and Fit Tips

Olive Oil and Tangerine Muffins with Chia Seeds

Olive Oil and Tangerine Muffins

Fruit infused muffins are a delicious way to use fresh fruit of the season. Using the zest and the juice of the fruit, in this case tangerines, adds a ton of flavor and aroma to muffins. Chia seeds are a nice switch from traditional poppyseed. Chia seeds are a great source of plant based protein and fiber. I also typically use oat flour, which I grind out of old fashioned oats in my food processor, to create the base for my muffins. It is a super simple way to create you own fresh ground flour.

The shining star in this recipe is the use of olive oil rather than butter. Most people don’t typically reach for olive oil for baking, but trust me, it is a terrific fat substitute. I used a premium extra virgin olive oil by Oilio. Oilio is a family owned company and their oil is single sourced in Southern Kalamata Greece. The olive oil gives these muffins a super moist texture while amping up the good for you fatty acids, making for a muffin that is equally delicious as it is healthy.

Olive Oil and Tangerine Muffins with Chia Seeds

Olive Oil and Tangerine Muffins with Chia Seeds

Ingredients

  • 1 c oat flour
  • 1 c old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 c olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/3 c tangerine juice or orange juice
  • 2 tbsp tangerine zest or orange zest
  • 1/3 c cane sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 and line a muffin pan with paper liners.
  2. Combine oat flour, oats, sugar and baking powder. Stir to combine.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, add olive oil, almond milk, tangerine juice, tangerine zest. Stir to combine.
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry. Stir. Add chia seeds and stir once more.
  5. Use a 1/4 cup measuring scoop to pour batter into muffin pan.
  6. Bake for 35 minutes.
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Blooming Where You Are Planted

Bloom where you are planted

Today’s post is a bit of a departure for me. It is just as much for me as it is for you. I have been thinking often about mental fitness and practicing a positive mind in the midst of setbacks, letdowns, and failure. More specifically, carving out your own path to success. Some people graduate with degrees and know exactly what they want to do. The job is there, they can see it and go for it. But what about those of us that have a passion for something and can’t quite define how to turn it into a career or anything that we can survive doing? For example, I love creating moments with food and sharing that through photography and with the recipes I post here at Fresh and Fit. I didn’t know when I started Fresh and Fit that a love for photography would bloom. Then it became more and more clear how to hone in on that.

I first needed to practice. I wasn’t (and currently am not) going to be an acclaimed food stylist out of the gates. In order to become great at what we love, we have to practice. We must embarrass ourselves, disappoint ourselves, frustrate ourselves, and do it over and over again. Repeat the process on a regular basis. Make a habit out of failing, until finally one day, through the metaphorical lense of the camera, we began to see our mistakes clearly and start to correct them. The branches that have fallen in our paths are easier for us to pick up and set to the side so we can keep going. We have to turn what discourages us; the not knowing, the confusion, the sense of intimidation, into what encourages us. Those are our lessons. We are our own teachers. The setbacks are the twists in the road that are narrowing you and me to where we are meant to go.

Then, for some of us, there is that ever-looming need for urgency. “I am (insert age here), when will I catch up to my peers and have my own success?” There are the feelings and thoughts of not fitting in because you don’t have a lucrative career. But we must remember to stay in our own lane and also practice our confidence in the unknown. Is a flower that blooms late in the season any less beautiful than one that peaked in early spring? Of course not. We all have our optimal time to peak. When the conditions are just right and we are strong and nourished. By now you are probably sick of the metaphors, but I believe they are important to the visualization process.

In addition, you and I must remember that the way we manifest and express our passion may change while we are on the path to our destination. Don’t guilt yourself if that happens. That is intuition guiding you. Always listen to intuition. We have to tweak things as we go. But the key is that we keep going. I encourage anyone who is just starting out on a path less traveled to put one foot in front of the other. Day by day. Start a list in your smart phone. Jot down your top passion and then start a sublist underneath with small goals to get you started. Let’s say you want to become an avid gardener and teach others to do the same. Then maybe your goals would be buying a book on gardening, starting a small herb garden, and creating a social media page to share what you are learning. Once you’ve got the ball rolling, you can create your next list of goals. Eventually you may decide to open a greenhouse and sell what you grow, or maybe write your own book. It will become more and more clear. For now, keep it small and perfect your craft. Then, when the time comes, bloom.

Fresh Infused Water

infused water

As healthy as I always try to eat – heaps of fresh vegetables and well sourced protein, organic when possible, and cooking my own food – my most noticeable pitfall was always a crucial one, hydration! I would go all day with only having coffee in the morning. I find water hard to drink unless I’m really thirsty. After moving into our new home and settling in, I started filling my glass carafe with water and fruit and allowing them to infuse for a few hours. In the evening I will drink it and refill for the next day. I highly recommend doing this simple thing to everyone who has a hard time getting in enough H20. It seems so easy and we hear about the benefits of hydration all the time. It was easier said than done for me, until now. My favorite combination is strawberries with fresh basil or lemon and mint. Cantaloupe is also delicious and aromatic. Another positive effect of water infusions, they are so darn beautiful to look at!