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November 2015
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Recipe Corner

Recipe Corner - Chef Jason - 1-adjHere are a few recipes that Chef Jason Campbell, at the Whole Foods Market Plano culinary center, generously shared in preparation for holiday get-togethers. Campbell regularly teaches hands-on cooking classes on food and meal preparation ranging from vegetarian to French cuisine, knife skills, preparing sushi and more.



Smoked Salt and Molasses Glazed Game Hens
Yield: one bird per guest for big eaters or one-half for smaller appetites

2 Cornish game hens each
1 1/2 Tbsp smoked salt
1 oz molasses
2/3 cup water

Cut the game hens in half by first removing the backbone with a pair of kitchen shears, then cut the bird down the middle of the breast with a sharp knife. Place the 4 game hen halves on a cookie sheet with a roasting rack on top, and then pat the birds dry on both sides with a clean paper towel.

Bring the water to a simmer in a small sauce pan on the stovetop, then whisk in the smoked salt and molasses and move the pan to a cold burner. Let the mixture cool until you cannot see any steam releasing from the liquid.

Brush the birds on both sides with the liquid and bake in a pre-heated 400-de- gree oven for 18 minutes then remove and re-brush with liquid on both sides. Place back in the oven and cook until the thickest part of the breast reaches 165 degrees on your meat thermometer. Remove from the oven and let hens rest for 5 minutes before serving.


Sweet Potato and Butternut Squash Gratin with Blue Cheese and Walnuts
Yield: four to six servings

1 butternut squash (peeled)
1 large sweet potato or 2 regular, peeled
1 container blue cheese crumbles
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 Tbsp salt
1 large bowl ice water

RC - Whole Foods - NOV 2015 -IMG_6776-3-adjWhen slicing the butternut squash cut off the bulb, remove seeds and dice, saving or freezing for another recipe. Using a good knife, mandolin or vegetable slicer, slice the butternut squash neck and sweet potatoes; 1/8 inch thick is ideal, but just cut them as thin as you can and still feel comfortable not any thinner than 1/8 inch.

Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in 3 quart-plus sauce pan and add 1 tablespoon of salt to the water then add the squash and reduce heat to a simmer.

Blanch the squash slices for about 3 minutes or longer, depending on the thickness, but cooked al-dente. Remove from the water and place in the ice water. Repeat the process with the sweet potatoes, keeping both vegetables separated. Drain the vegetables and pat dry.

In a small greased baking square or rectangle dish, layer all of the butternut squash evenly. Place half of the blue cheese on top of the squash, then layer the sweet potatoes on top. Top the dish with the blue cheese and place in a 400-degree preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is melted and hot in the middle.

In a hot small sauté pan on the stove, toast the walnuts over medium high heat for 2 minutes. Remove the gratin, top with walnuts and cut into triangles then serve.


Green Beans and Thyme Butter Mushroom Sauté
Yield: four servings

6 oz haricot vert green beans
6 oz baby bella mushrooms (cut into 4 triangular pieces)
2 Tbsp salted butter
Salt and pepper to taste
1 Tbsp fresh chopped thyme

Blanch the green beans in large pot of salted water on the stove for 2 minutes or until you hear them start to pop. Shock the green beans in a bowl of ice water, then cut them in half and hold. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan (you want enough surface area that the mushrooms do not touch) when the butter starts to sizzle add the mushrooms to the pan spaced so they are not touching. Season with salt and pepper, then add thyme to the pan.

Cook mushrooms until nicely browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add green beans to the pan and cook just until the beans are heated through then season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.


Fontina Cheese Toast with Cottage Bacon, Baby Greens and Poached Eggs
Yield: four servings

2 slices large Italian bread, 1-inch thick
4 sandwich slices fontina cheese each
4 slices Canadian, cottage or Irish bacon
8 large eggs
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp salt
3 Tbsp balsamic glaze
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cups baby greens
3 Tbsp salted butter
Salt and pepper to taste

RC - Whole Foods - NOV 2015 -IMG_6776-7-adjMelt the butter in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat and toast the bread on one side. Flip the bread over add the cheese to the top and place the skillet in a 375-degree oven.

Toast the bread until cheese is melted and the bottom side is toasted. Remove from the toast from the pan and sear the bacon until heated slightly browned on both sides. Turn the oven off and place the toast and bacon in a heat safe dish and place in the oven to stay warm. Whisk 2 tablespoons of olive oil and balsamic glaze together then toss with the greens.

To poach eggs, work in groups of four eggs at a time. Use the freshest eggs that you can find. You will need a large slotted spoon. Crack four eggs into a four small bowls.

Bring 2 quarts of water to boil in a 3 quart pot. Stir in vinegar and salt until dissolved and whisk in one direction so that the water forms a slight tunnel in the middle of the pot, add eggs one at a time pouring them in to pot very carefully not to break them. Turn the heat of the pot to medium or lower as needed so that the water does not come to simmer but stays hot, Cook the eggs until the whites are cooked but the yolks are still runny.

Remove the eggs from the pan carefully and set on a plate to drain. Bring the water back to a boil and poach the other four eggs.

To assemble, pick the four eggs that are not perfect and pierce the yolk and drizzle one yolk on the bottom of each of four plates. Take the remaining balsamic glaze and drizzle it on each of the plates. Cut the toast in half and place one half on each plate. Top the toast with the greens then the bacon. Top each with an egg and season the egg with salt and pepper.


To learn more about events at the Whole Foods Market Plano culinary center, visit

Massage space

BB - LOGO - NEW - MASSAGE SPACE - FullSizeRender-adj

Getting Its Own Facelift

by Martin Miron

Anatoly and Lena Kolmakov have been operating Massage Space Spa, in Plano, for eight years with a passion for the heath and beauty industry and helping people feel their absolute best. Anatoly, a licensed massage therapist, has more than 25 years of experience as a massage and physical therapist that began in his native Russia. When he came to the states, owning his own practice was the ultimate goal.

The couple recently remodeled the interior of the spa and is upgrading their customer service procedures to be more more friendly and convenient, including easy-to-use website features and online booking. A better, updated client Wellness Program will also follow later in the year. New services at the spa include top-of-the-line aesthetic treatments using Circadia and Dermalogica skincare products, as well as expert, high-quality waxing services. They now carry Doterra Essential Oils and provide AromaTouch Technique, as well. Massages, facials, waxing and company chair events range from $45 to $100.

BB -MassageSpace-2014-Jan-NANTX_8505Massage Space-1-adjLena advises that to maintain healthy skin turnover, keep skin well balanced and hydrated, everyone should see an aesthetician at least once a month. “An aesthetician is a skin’s best friend! They can offer guidance, provide tons of information and completely customize services such as chemical peels and microdermabrasion for everyone’s specific skin issues and skin type.”

As holistic health and beauty ways become more common, busy and stressed adults are most interested in the flexible services of Massage Space Spa. “Our clients really come from all backgrounds, because people of all ages really care about their health,” says Anatoly. “We love to take care of them, and show them how easy it is to de-BB-MassageSpace-2014-Jan-NANTX_8505Massage Space-13-adjstress!”

Because the spa is family owned, the Kolmakovs really cater to their clients. “We get to know them on a first-name basis and remember special things about them and their families. We make sure everyone is well taken care of. Most of our staff has been with us since we opened back in 2007!” says Anatoly. “We provide fun and highly informative monthly classes to further help our clients learn more about holistic ways to heal the body and take care of themselves!”

Massage Space Spa is located at 7000 Independence Pkwy., in Plano. For appointments, call 972-612-5363 or visit See ads, pages 7 and 28.

Choosing the Perfect Pet

NP_1115_DogCat_2_96861982Not Just Any Dog or Cat Will Do

by: Sandra Murphy

The old line, “He followed me home, can we keep him?” used to get a kid a dog or cat of his own. In today’s homes, it’s not that easy. Choosing a pet is a personal choice not to be taken lightly nor made on another person’s behalf. A surprise pet is a bad idea.

Rather than gift a pet during the holidays or at any other time, give a coupon to be redeemed after extensive and careful consideration. Involve the whole family in listing pros and cons, deal breakers and must-haves. Lifestyle adjustments by everyone are to be expected, but pets shouldn’t make all the sacrifices. Available time and space, daily routines and costs all matter in determining the perfect pet.


Account Coordinator for z11 Communications, public speaker and author Michael Holtz, of Knoxville, Tennessee, admits he would’ve fallen in love with any dog. His wife, Sarah, searched to find the one that would work best for them. Based on past experience, Sarah knew that she didn’t want a herding, massive, shedding or miniature pet. She was drawn to Labrador types and found Marley, a golden/basset mix rescue that moved in as Michael was undergoing cancer treatment.

“She’s calm, playful and wants to be near, but doesn’t smother, is stubborn, yet trainable, and mostly obedient,” Sarah says. “Plus, she’s content to nap or go on three-mile walks. Walking Marley helped Michael’s recovery after surgery. She was good with just sniffing the green off of a blade of grass until he was ready to head home.” READ MORE


Barre Your Way to Better Fitness

FB_1115_Barre_259518953Ballet-Inspired Workouts Create Long and Lean Muscles

by: Lynda Bassett

Imagine having a ballerina’s physique, grace, strength and flexibility. That’s the potential of barre.

“Barre is a combination of ballet, yoga and Pilates principles. We use small, isometric movements to temporarily fatigue muscles and make them long and lean. The so-called fatigue is what causes muscles to shake, and therefore, change,” explains Nadia Yokarini-Kotsonis, a certified barre instructor at Physique Fitness Studio, in Grove City, Ohio. Students use a ballet barre to support themselves while doing the exercises.

Yokarini-Kotsonis is among many former dancers that have embraced barre fitness. Trained in ballet, tap, contemporary and traditional dance in Athens, Greece, she discovered barre when she moved to the U.S. “I fell in love with how challenging it was and the effects and changes I saw in my body. I got certified a year later and have been teaching ever since. I’m still in love with practicing it, no matter how tired I might be beforehand,” she says.

Rather than a cardiovascular regimen, “Barre is good for developing core strength. You gain overall flexibility, muscle strength, improved posture and range of motion,” says Lisa Juliet, West Coast regional director of the teacher certification program (

Not Just for Dancers

While barre has had some U.S. presence since the 1950s, “It’s having a resurgence now,” says Charlene Causey, a certified natural health professional and ballet body barre instructor in Pueblo, Colorado.

Newfound interest began on both coasts and is quickly becoming a Midwest mainstay, according to Yokarini-Kotsonis, who says it’s one of the most popular classes she teaches, and other studios are following suit. She remarks, “Everyone wants to offer barre, and everyone wants to come to a class and see what it’s about.” READ MORE

Dangers in the Cosmetic Bag

GL_1115_CosmeticBag_112406930-1Choose Safe and Healthy Natural Beauty Aids

We all want to look and feel beautiful, often enhancing our best features with assistance from cosmetics. Yet many of us may not be aware of the toxic ingredients contained in products we’re using.

“When the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act was passed 77 years ago, it contained 112 pages of standards for food and drugs, and only one page for cosmetics,” says Connie Engel, Ph.D., science and education manager at the Breast Cancer Fund and its Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, in San Francisco.

While most cosmetic ingredients must be listed on product labels, sometimes their names are hard to recognize, many are toxic and some of the most dangerous ones may not even be listed. Labeled toxins commonly found in cosmetics include endocrine disruptors that can affect our developmental, reproductive, neurological and immune systems. Here are just a few:

Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), also known as Teflon, is found in foundation, pressed powder, loose powder, bronzer, blush, eye shadow and mascara. It can even enhance the toxicity of other chemicals, according to Danish research published in the International Journal of Andrology, and due to its fluorine base, can disrupt iodine absorption, contributing to breast disease including cancer. READ MORE

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