Hey there friends!

How are you this morning? I hope your week has been going well so far. In case you missed yesterday’s post, you still have until Thursday night at midnight to enter my 2nd blog birthday giveaway, where you can win a printed copy of my Fresh Bites recipe book. Check out this post for details on how to enter.

Now, over to my usual Wednesday subject matter, here’s all the new things I tried out for Try Something New Tuesday 103:

1. Recipe of the Week: It’s been a while since I’ve given you an appetizer as the Recipe of the Week, so that’s what’s coming at ya today! The main ingredient is this:

I love portobello mushrooms in all forms, especially when they’re grilled on the barbeque or sandwiched between bread in a sandwich or burger. I also think they make an excellent sturdy vehicle for transporting other goodies from plate to mouth, and this idea inspired some Bruschetta Portobello Mushroom Stacks.

The base here is the mushroom, and on top is a thin layer of spinach, followed by a lovely, zesty, slightly sweet dip/sauce/spread made of roasted red peppers and sundried tomatoes. The bruschetta layer tops the stack, and the balsamic vinegar and tomato juices drizzle down into the mushroom to make it nice and juicy.

I baked the mushroom caps in the oven beforehand, but you could easily grill them instead to create a more smoky flavour. A lovely appetizer for your first backyard barbeque of the season if you ask me! (Well, maybe it’s not quite outdoor dining season just yet… but it will be soon!)

 

2. Orange pants! One thing I love about the transition between winter and spring is the bright colours that pop up in stores. I know a lot of people love fall and winter fashion, but lets face it, there are a very select few people that look good in dusty rose and those other muted tones. Personally, I think that they wash me out and generally look very blah. I’m a colours girl, and my new pants are certainly not blah.

A couple of weeks ago I bought these jeans and another pair in bright purple from The Bay. They’re from Madonna’s Material Girl line, which has never appealed to me until now. On this particular shopping trip, the pants sort of seemed to be calling my name. So far I’ve worn the purple ones twice, but this week marked the debut for the orangies. Even though it wasn’t exactly warm outside, they certainly made me feel more springy. Did you know that studies have shown that people who wear bright colours tend to be more optimistic? If that’s not an excuse to buy fun pants, I don’t know what is.

3. Tonica kombucha. Remember back here when I tried kombucha and thought it tasted absolutely foul? Well due to recent digestive issues, I decided it might be a good idea to give it another chance. There was no way I was going to buy the same kind again, but a new-to-me brand happened to catch my eye at my local health food store the other day.

(Source)

In case you’re a kombucha newbie, these are some of the health benefits, according to Tonica‘s website:

Known as the “Elixer of Long Life” since the Tsin Dynasty of 221 bc, Kombucha has been used around the world for centuries for its detoxifying and energizing effects. Kombucha has been shown to naturally contain:

  • Probiotics-polyphenols-B Vitamins-Organic enzymes
  • Vital amino acids-organic acids

Countless texts and age old remedies recount the following benefits of drinking Kombucha on an ongoing basis:

  • Promotion of liver cleansing, resulting in healthy skin, hair and improved eyesight.
  • Increase of metabolism & resulting decrease of body fat
  • Balancing of blood sugar levels
  • Increase of energy
  • Improved PH balance and resulting mental clarity

Tonica is a Canadian brand (YAAAAAAY!) and their kombucha is 100% raw and organic, with no refined sugars or artificial nasties. I won’t lie – yesterday wasn’t my first Tonica experience. Earlier last week I tried their Peach Resolution and totally fell in love with it. I sat in my office with a huge smile on my face as I drank it, wishing I’d purchased 2 bottles instead of one. Instantly addicted to the feel-good fizz, I decided I’d buy another flavour to try this Tuesday. My pick was Mango Passion this time.

Again, absolutely DELICIOUS. Back when I was experimenting with kombucha for the first time, I ended up swallowing about 1/4 of the bottle like it was Buckley’s – with my nose plugged. After that, I abandoned it with no desire to experiment further. But consider me officially a kombucha loving nutrition nut, because this more recent experience was fabulous. Apparently David Wolfe (who’s a super duper thought leader and speaker when it comes to raw foods) touts Tonica as “by far, the best kombucha ever”, and I can totally see why! I may have only tried 2 brands in my lifetime, but this one was so good that I don’t see much reason to try any more!

OK, that’s all for me today! Now I want you to tell me:

  • Do you like kombucha? Was it an acquired taste or love at first sight?
  • What fashion trends are you most excited about this spring?