Thursday, February 2, 2012

Grasshopper Vegan Overnight Oats and the Premiere of Fat Chef on The Food Network

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I rediscovered the Chia Seed and along with it, the Internet recipe sensation Vegan Overnight Oats. With the help and guidance of my new friend Lani Muelrath, I quickly saw that Vegan Overnight Oats cannot become an everyday breakfast option for me (too high in calories) but as a treat on the weekend, maybe even lunch on Saturday, well, they're perfect! 

This version combines my some of my all time favorite flavors--mint and chocolate--with the creamy, chewy taste sensation that is VOO. Plus, with the addition of 1 cup of frozen spinach, we can get more greens in our bodies. It's a win-win situation!

Grasshopper Vegan Overnight Oats
serves 1

Print me!

layer A:
1/3 cup regular oats (not steel cut)
1 Tbsp chia seeds
<1 cup alternative milk, like almond or soy
1/2 scoop Amazing Grass Green Superfood Chocolate Drink Powder or 1/2 Tbsp raw cacao
1 tsp maple syrup
1/8 tsp peppermint extract
layer B:
1 large frozen banana or 1 1/2 small frozen bananas
1 cup frozen spinach
splash of alternative milk
1/8 tsp peppermint extract

In a small bowl, whisk together all ingredients for layer A and refrigerate overnight or for 1 hour.

In the morning, prepare layer B by placing all of the ingredients into the canister of a high speed blender or the bowl of a food processor fitted with the S blade. If using the blender, blend the ingredients and tamp them down until the mixture is even and creamy. (This takes a few minutes as the spinach is more difficult to blend than banana alone.)  If using a food processor, process and stop to scrape down the sides often until the mixture is even and creamy.

Layer the overnight oats mixture with the banana soft serve and eat immediately.

Did anyone catch the premiere of Fat Chef on The Food Network?

Ironically, the first episode took place in Cleveland, OH (where I live). In my opinion, it was pretty painful to watch. First, my heart was bleeding for the two "contestants" who were totally out of control with their diets. Fried food, fast food, candy and cookies, day in and day out. The male chef, Rocco Whalen, owner of Farenheit Restaurant, was consuming 8000 calories per day. The female, Kimberly McCune Gibson, 5000. Of pure garbage.

But the worst was the diet recommendations that the trainer on the show gave them. IMHO, they were totally unsustainable in the long run and only set people up for ultimate failure at keeping weight off. And it's not just about the two chefs on the show, it's about all of the thousands of people watching the show and hoping to discover the key to being healthy.

What were the weight loss recommendations on Fat Chef? Eat small meals of lean (ie animal) protein and  vegetables every four hours. Oh, that, and exercise ridiculous amounts every week, which is totally unsustainable in real life (like when the cameras stop following you 12 weeks later).

Sure, a person being followed by cameras can stick to this plan for 12 weeks, and they would pretty much guarantee a major weight loss, but WHAT ABOUT THE REST OF THEIR LIVES? Do the producers of the show even care?

No mention of high volumes of low calorie plant foods like salads, smoothies (not talking about the fruit laden ones here, just the truly green ones), soups, sauteed greens, beans or whole grains. Just some pork and steamed cauliflower with a side of celery sticks.

In Rocco's own words, "Thanksgiving sucked," he says bluntly, "but it put me to the test at the hardest time of year. And the carefree side of things, carefree in eating whatever I like. I miss that, too. Being able to eat a poached pear with softly melting blue cheese over it, topped with a port wine drizzle, and being able to enjoy some whenever I wanted to . . . "

That is no way to live!

Thanksgiving shouldn't "suck!" Come to my house for a plant based, no-oil Thanksgiving!

You don't need to be hungry all of the time in order to lose weight. You don't need to punish your body with exercise.

It's unsustainable (Rocco says he's now working out two hours a day. Holy sh!#.). Why is the real knowledge about these issues being kept from people?

And what about the customers that these two unhealthy chefs serve their disease promoting food to day in and day out? Are they changing their menus as a result of this intervention? Do they see food in a different way? If they did, they would certainly want to share that knowledge with their customers. Outrageously delicious, healthy, low calorie food does not have to come in small packages, but I don't think that either of the chefs learned that from their experience on the show.

I'd like to follow up with these two chefs and see how they are doing maintaining their weight loss after the taping was over. Oh, I live in Cleveland, I guess I can hunt them down!

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