Sunday, March 17, 2024

South Jersey is Beautiful

 Barnegat Lighthouse

Those of you who knew Junetta, may remember that one of Mom's favorite places was Long Beach Island (LBI); especially, Barnegat Lighthouse. We had not gone since we took her there on her birthday a long time ago (before Covid) when she was still with us. Mom has been gone 4 years already. RIP mom...We always think of her when we see 'ol Barney!

Harry and I went to the shore, with our cameras, in search of seals that were reported in the news to be all along the NJ coastline. There have been more sightings early this year due to the warmer weather. Young seal pups migrate to warmer waters from New England.

Well, we did not see any seals. It didn't matter. The weather was so nice; it felt so good to get outdoors! A LBI resident told us that they only had one seal sighting on the island. I'm thinking that it may be the one that was found entangled in plastic in Beach Haven. The Marine Mammal Stranding Center rescued the sickly pup last month. The problem of plastic is another story. If we had seen any seals of course, we would have kept a respectable distance of at least 100 feet per NOAA recommendations.

Having similar color tones as in seals, we watched other shore life that at first we thought were ducks. We're not bird experts, but they look like Brant - small sized geese that breed in Canada and overwinter along the New Jersey and New York coastlines. As with many species, they are in decline. Caring for the environment and our waterways has never been more important.

We watched the vegetarian Brant feeding on sea grasses and greens along the moss-covered rocks. 


Related Links

Atlantic Brant Research

Audubon Bird Guide - Brant

Seal and Sea Lion Week

Barnegat Bay Partnership

 Blog Post and photographs Copyright (C)Wind. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, January 2, 2024

RD Approved Grazing Board! @eatrightpro @eatrightnj #haveaplant #gardencuizine

Best Wishes for a 

Healthy and Happy New Year 2024!

Happy New Year everyone! I'm proud to be featured in a recent Every Day Health article (link below) with my take on an RD approved Grazing Board. Grazing boards are spin offs of charcuterie appetizer boards.

Grazing boards (also called graze boards) feature a selection of nibbles that can be served to your family or guests before the main course. They can also be served after a main course for visiting family or friends. 

This New Years, RD approved, grazing board features sustainable, protein-packed, legumes, namely black-eyed peas - called Hoppin' John. Black-eyed peas bring good health, joy, good luck and peace, which we all sure need more of in this world.

Ingredients for Diana Wind's dietitian approved - healthy grazing board:

  • Hoppin' John: black-eyed peas (also known as pulses or legumes) - precooked and ready to heat and serve
  • Fruit cups (we used strawberries, blueberries with plain Greek yogurt)
  • Yogurt or whipped cream for the fruit dip (Cinnamon Bionico sauce is always a winner too! Recipe included below)
  • Basket or bowl of whole fruits: bananas, apples, clementines, grapes (and/or other favorite fruits)
  • Carrot sticks
  • Celery sticks (and/or any other veggies you want to use; including, but not limited to: red bell pepper strips, cucumbers, radishes and cherry tomatoes)
  • Hummus dip for the veggies (we used store bought)
  • Cheddar cheese (or any of your favorite cheese, with some cut into star shapes)
  • Jalapeno Pepper Jack cheese (cut into star shapes)
  • Wholegrain crackers
  • Spanikopita (spinach & feta) wedges - store bought; ready to heat and serve
  • Pistachios (or any of your favorite nuts)

Putting it all together

This is another GardenCuizine freestyle recipe, meaning that you control the portions based on how many people you plan to serve. Simple and easy!

Start with selecting a large serving board, such as a large cutting board, mirror, or tray. We happened to have a big blue plastic tray that worked perfectly.

Fancy martini or sangria glasses and short decorative glasses make good serving containers for your vitamin-rich fruits and veggies! A twisted star party necklace on the tray adds to the design.

A side fruit bowl or basket filled with bananas, apples and clementines adds even more nutrition for you and your guests. No need for junk foods at this party! 

Keep leftover Hoppin' John in your refrigerator so that you will have plenty to enjoy as a meal another time over quinoa or brown rice.

Best Wishes for a Healthy and Happy New Year! 

Related Links

RD Approved Grazing Boards - Check out #8

GardenCuizine Hoppin' John recipe 

GardenCuizine Cinnamon Bionico Sauce recipe 

Looking Differently at Charcuterie 

How Beans Contribute to Sustainable Nutrition

Photo and blog post Copyright (C)Wind. All rights reserved.