Up your Veggie Ante During Breast Cancer & Vegetarian Awareness Month


up-your-veggie-intakeWhen one thinks of October pastimes, picking bushels of apples, drinking piping hot cider and donning a spooky Halloween costume come to mind. But did you that this month is also dedicated to raising awareness about breast cancer and vegetarianism? The two issues may not seemingly go hand-in-hand, but a diet that includes fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains is certainly intrinsic to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Studies have shown that cruciferous vegetables (fondly nicknamed as “crucifers”) like broccoli, cauliflower and our Living Watercress contain large amounts of the sulfur-containing chemical glucosinolate. This chemical is thought to inhibit breast, lung, colon and prostate cancer development. According to cancer.govglucosinolate compounds help protect cells from DNA damage, have antiviral and antibacterial effects, and they inhibit tumor blood vessel formation and tumor cell migration.

Researchers have also begun to investigate whether vegetarians have a lower risk of developing cancer than their meat-eating counterparts. Findings to date are limited, but one study reports that “suboptimal dieting choices” may be linked to as many of 50% of breast cancer cases.

Endeavor to make more nutritious meals this month by preparing colorful vegetarian dishes. Taste and Savor’s Cauliflower Tabbouleh in Living Butter Lettuce Cups combines cauliflower and our Living Butter Lettuce to create a crisp meatless snack or lunch. Along with glucosinolate – rich cauliflower, our Living Butter Lettuce is also full of vitamins and has high doses of beta-carotene which is often linked to cancer prevention. If you’d like to pump up your veggie intake at breakfast, try Nourish With Whole Food’s acai bowl. The Live Gourmet enthusiast combines acai powder with a variety of vitamin rich fruits and vegetables, including our very own Living Watercress.

You can still get in the fall spirit by eating healthy. Pick up your favorite apples from your local orchard and add them to Taste and Savor’s Romaine Wrap with Crunchy Apple Salad. Whether you’re an avid vegetarian or enthusiastic meat eater, including more fresh veggies and fruits in every meal will improve you and your family’s overall health. Take a cue from Live Gourmet by creatively serving a fall veggie dish in a carved out pumpkin or squash!


National Seafood Month: Live Gourmet’s Caesar Baked White Fish


A School of fish swimming in the seaThough October is National Seafood Month, it’s important to not be hasty when choosing fish for your family. While demand for fresh seafood is up, our oceans are rapidly changing with more than a half a billion pounds of seafood being fished daily around the world according to Seafood Watch. Organizations like the Marine Stewardship Council share that it’s important to choose varieties that are caught or farmed in a sustainable way.

How do we know if a particular fish is sustainable?

One way is to look for blue MSC or Friend of the Sea labels which denote that the seafood has been responsibly caught by a certified sustainable fishery.

Certain fish are more sustainable in certain regions of the country than others due to shipping. Seafood Watch provides a helpful seafood guide for each state in the US. Download yours here.

When traveling or dining out at a seafood focused restaurant, reference Fish2Fork, which rates restaurants according to the impact their seafood has on the seas and marine life.

Adding sustainable seafood to your diet is a nutritious and delicious choice, especially when you combine them with fruits and vegetables. Try our Caesar Baked White Fish with our vitamin rich Living Butter Lettuce or Red Butter Lettuce for your next family dinner. 

Caesar Baked White Fish
Yields 6
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Caesar Dressing
  1. ¾ cup mayonnaise
  2. ⅓ cup Parmesan cheese, grated or shredded
  3. ¼ cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  4. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 1 to 2 teaspoons anchovy paste
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. ½ teaspoon pepper
  1. 2 ½ to 3 pounds white fish filets (such as barramundi, cod, sable fish or tilapia), ¾ to 1 inch thick, cut into 6 portions
  2. 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  3. ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
  4. 1 tablespoon Parmesan, grated or shredded
Garlic Toasts
  1. 1 loaf of crusty French or Sourdough baguette, cut into 1-inch slices
  2. ⅓ cup olive oil
  3. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. Pinch of salt
Grilled Butter Lettuce
  1. 3 heads Live Gourmet Living Butter or Red Butter Lettuce, cut off root ball and cut in half vertically.
  1. Preheat oven to 450⁰. Line a sheet pan with parchment or aluminum foil.
  2. To make the Caesar dressing, combine mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, garlic, anchovy paste, salt, and pepper and whisk until thoroughly combined. Refrigerate half the sauce until ready to serve.
  3. Rinse the fish filets, pat dry, and place on the sheet pan. Combine breadcrumbs and parsley. Generously spread each filet with the remaining sauce and sprinkle the filets with breadcrumb mixture. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake the fish for 10 to 12 minutes, until fish flakes and center is opaque. Cover with aluminum foil and allow to rest on the pan for 10 minutes.
  4. Heat a grill pan to medium-high. Combine olive oil, garlic, and salt and brush pan and both sides of bread with oil and grill, flipping once, until toasted, about 3 minutes. Brush cut side of lettuce with olive oil mixture and grill, cut side down, until charred in spots, about 30 to 60 seconds.
  5. To serve, plate fish over part of lettuce, drizzle with remaining sauce, and top with garlic toasts.
Pete's Living Greens Blog http://www.livegourmet.com/wordpress/

Keep Your Immune System Strong with Watercress Tea and Other Self Care Tips


Fall The crisp fall air often feels refreshing. Yet as temperatures dip and we find ourselves indoors more, influenza (AKA the flu) cases tend to increase during the month of October. Now in midst of school, activities and household responsibilities, it’s easy for families to begin to feel a bit run down. To help, we’re sharing a few self-care tips to keep your immune system strong.

Drink lots of fluids!

Most health experts, recommend the “8×8” rule, which is eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. However, your intake depends on a variety of factors, including physical activity, where you live and whether you’re pregnant. Staying hydrated doesn’t mean other fluids are out of the question. Fresh juices, infused waters and herbal teas are also healthy options and can contribute towards your daily intake.

We’re quite smitten with Alternative Daily’s watercress tea recipe. Not only will this tea keep you hydrated, it also will support a healthy immune system. For the complete recipe, go to Alternative Daily.

Get regular exercise!

As we reported in last week’s post, experts recommend three 25-minute sessions of high intensity exercise or five to six 30-minute sessions of moderate intensity exercise each week.  According to Harvard Health Publications, “Just like a healthy diet, exercise can contribute to general good health and therefore to a healthy immune system. It may contribute even more directly by promoting good circulation, which allows the cells and substances of the immune system to move through the body freely and do their job efficiently.”

If you find yourself crunched for time, try these exercises suggested by personal trainer Garnet Henderson that can be done in your office, hotel room or even between appointments.

Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables!

Diet plays a part in a healthy immune system. The USDA recommends filling half of your plate with fruits and vegetables (or 5-9 servings per day). Fruits and vegetables full of Vitamins C, A and D are especially helpful when staving off a cold.

Did you know? Our Living Watercress and Upland Cress have as much vitamin C as an orange and romaine lettuce has more vitamin A than a carrot. One of our favorite cold-remedies is our very own hearty watercress vegetable soup. Try it today!

Don’t forget to breath!

Deep breathing helps in times of stress. In fact, if the body is faced with constant stress this can have a negative effect on your immune system according to Harvard Health Publications. We love Time’s 6 Breathing Exercises to Relax in 10 Minutes or Less.

And if that doesn’t do the trick, “Romaine Calm” as Call Me Artsy reminds us!

Running into Fall: Eat Leafy Greens to Give Your Athletic Performance a Boost


A woman runs as the sun sets. Two images for leafy green salads accompany the runner photo.Marathon running may not be synonymous with fall pastimes like sipping pumpkin lattes or heading to the cider mill. Yet, thousands of diligent individuals are preparing for half and full marathons around the world this season. These athletes have to properly cross-train, fit in ample training time and stretch to successfully complete their goals. They also have to be mindful of what they eat. In fact, intense bouts of physical activity like marathon running deplete one’s antioxidant levels. According to the Mayo Clinic, plant-based foods, like Pete’s Living Upland Cress and Organic Watercress, are the best sources of antioxidants.

 Why are these substances important?

“Powerful antioxidants found in dark leafy greens, including lettuce, can benefit athletes by reducing damage to cells during exercise and in recovery,” says Barbara Ruhs, Arizona-based Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Expert. “In addition, leafy greens are a source of hydration and a variety of vitamins (vitamin C), minerals (potassium, magnesium) and nutrients (fiber) that may enhance athletic performance.”

When our bodies undergo physical exertion, we produce free radicals, and there is evidence linking free radical production to the process of aging and DNA and cell damage. Ruhs mentions a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition that found that subjects who consumed watercress daily before working out, experienced less DNA damage than their non-consuming watercress counterparts.

You don’t have to be a marathon runner to reap the benefits of a healthy diet and exercise regime.  The American Heart Association recommends at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity at least 5 days per week or at least 25 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity at least 3 days per week.  Our Pete’s Living Greens products are an excellent addition to a well-balanced diet for active individuals of all levels. Peruse our blog and Facebook page, for a variety of nutritional yet tasty recipes.

You can find Barbara Ruhs on Twitter at @BarbRuhsRD, Facebook, Pinterest and on http://www.neighborhoodnutrition.com/


Pete’s Living Greens’ Favorite Hearty Meals in Honor of National Grain Month

greens-meet-grainsWondering how to incorporate whole grains, like quinoa, millet and farro, in your daily diet? They’re actually quite versatile! To help you get started and since it’s National Grain Month, we’ve picked our favorite meals that combine healthy ancient grains with our favorite superfood watercress. Stop by your local supermarket to pick up Pete’s Living Greens Organic Watercress or Upland Cress to get started.

A Few Facts and Resources

According to a Harvard.edu article, whole grains and fresh produce are some of the best sources of fiber. The essential carbohydrate regulates blood sugar and cholesterol levels and helps us feel full longer. While distinguishing itself from other starches and sugars, fiber doesn’t negatively contribute to your caloric intake.

Leafy greens like watercress and upland cress also provide servings of fiber. Together with an organic grain, watercress can complete the ultimate hearty meal.

For a complete list of whole grains, click here.

Our Favorite Grain and Watercress Recipes 

1. By now, you’re familiar with the popular (especially on Instagram!) avocado toast. Want to shake up the popular breakfast confection? Try it here with watercress and whole grain toast.  

2. Savory Oatmeal with our Living Upland Cress and root vegetables is a twist on breakfast for dinner. It’s even vegetarian! 

3. Bring Joy’s roasted sweet potato, quinoa, & watercress salad conjures feelings of fall.

4. Pete’s Living Greens’ Cressto sauce with whole grain pasta will go over well with the entire family, including your little ones.

5. Love and Lemon’s Watercress Feta and Farro Salad balances brightness, crunch and chewiness all in one bowl.

Food Safety Month: A Throwback Thursday Refresher


Did you know? Approximately 48 million people get sick annually from foodborne illnesses, according to the CDC. To start the school year off on the right foot and in light of Food Safety Month, we’d like to take the time to refresh our followers of important food safety tips.

Allegheny County Health Dept reminder to Wash Your HandsWash your hands frequently, especially before and after handling food, after using the restroom, blowing your nose, caring for a sick person, changing a diaper or handling an animal. For all you teachers and parents out there, the Allegheny County Health Department headed an effective Literary Classics Handwashing Awareness Campaign – a clever way to get your students’ attention! 

Cleanliness starts in the kitchen. Packing lunches before heading out the door can be difficult when time is of the essence. Though it’s tempting to save clean-up for later, it’s important to sanitize the kitchen immediately following use. Also, during preparation, follow the Partnership for Food Safety Education’s simple mantra: clean, separate, cook and chill.

The Fight Bac campaign's, as part of Food Safety Month, manta is chill, clean, separate and cook.Smart Packing. If you’re including any perishable food items such as deli meats, cheese, or yogurt in your child’s lunch, include at least one ice pack in an insulated bag. The FDA recommends that these types of foods should not be outside of the fridge more than 2 hours. If a meal should be served hot, prepare it in an insulated thermos (first, fill the container with hot water, let stand for a few minutes then empty and add the desired food).

We hope these quick Food Safety tips help as you and your family transition back into the school. Follow us @PetesLivingGreens for more food safety tips throughout the month on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  


Pete’s Living Greens Celebrates Family Meals Month – You Can Too!


In 2015, the FMI Foundation launched the family meals movement to help American families achieve the goal of sharing one more family meal each week at home with items from the grocery store. 

The family meals movement culminates this September with National Family Meals Month™, and we invite you to join us in celebrating! Tell us or show us with a photo what’s for dinner at your family table on social media (Facebook, Instagram or Twitter) and tag us @PetesLivingGreens and use the hashtag #Familymealsmonth.

This initiative hits close to home for our Vice President of Sales Brian Cook. We’ve asked him along with his family to share why eating together is important to them.

Top: The Cook Family; Bottom Right: Cauliflower Tabbouleh Living Butter Lettuce Cups by http://www.livingandeatingwell.com/
Top: The Cook Family; Bottom Right: Cauliflower Tabbouleh Living Butter Lettuce Cups by http://www.livingandeatingwell.com/

Brian: Since the kids were little we always had dinner together. It was one of the unbroken rules at the house. Everyone was to be home for dinner and if someone was at practice or other extracurricular activity, we waited, at least until they became teenagers. I loved that no one really ever complained either. Since we started the tradition so young they knew what to expect and if it was going to be a late dinner, we would have a snack.

The outcome? We all continue to be really close. Well, as close as we could be. My son, Saige, and daughter, Peyton, are on their own and away. We miss them dearly around the dinner table. I pray that they will keep the tradition when they start their families, which I hope is not too soon.

Dinners changed as the kids grew and frankly, we got older. Our young, very active family was happy with mac and cheese and pasta. But as they got older and didn’t want us hovering at practice, we began making more in-depth meals such as enchilada casserole, tacos and other comfort food since we had more time. Now, we enjoy a healthy eating lifestyle and have stayed very active together: walking and hiking together regularly. Dinner comes in the form of increased fruits and vegetables with smaller portions of protein. I threw a fit at first but feel much better since we’ve move to this route.

I love having dinner with the family because it is the one time things are still and many laughs are had. I asked the family their reasons for enjoying dinner and have shared those with you below. Wishing you all the very best and a great dinner….TOGETHER.

Jeanette (Mom) – I love to eat dinner with the family so we can stay connected.

Alynna (Daughter, 20) – Food and family are very important to me (she’s a chef) and it’s cool that they can come together.

Peyton (Daughter, 19) – I enjoyed talking about what’s happening in everyone’s life while enjoying a good meal.

Savannah (Daughter, 16) – Feels that eating together makes food taste that much better. 😉

The Cook Family can’t wait to try our new Cauliflower Tabbouleh Lettuce Cups During Family Meals Month!

Cauliflower Tabbouleh in Butter Lettuce Cups
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  1. 1 Head of Pete's Living Greens Butter Lettuce, conventional or organic
  2. 1 Head Cauliflower (or 2 bags florets)
  3. 2 Large Tomatoes, chopped
  4. 1 Cup Chopped Parsley
  5. ¼ Cup Chopped Mint
  6. 3 TB Lemon Juice
  7. ¼ Cup EVOO
  8. Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  1. Pulse the cauliflower florets in a food processor, or chop them by hand, until they are small bits resembling grains.
  2. Toss with chopped tomatoes, chopped parsley and mint, lemon juice and olive oil.
  3. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Spoon into the Pete's Living Greens Butter Lettuce cups and serve.
Pete's Living Greens Blog http://www.livegourmet.com/wordpress/

The Ultimate Power Salad for Fruits & Vegetables—More Matters Month


September is upon us and, though summer is technically not over, many of us are jumping back into routine. One way to help with the transition is by amping up your produce intake this September, which happens to be Fruits and Vegetables—More Matters Month. The health initiative encourages Americans to include more fruits and vegetables in every meal, including snacks, for better health.

In addition to giving you plenty vitamins and minerals, eating more produce provides fiber (keeping you fuller longer) and may reduce your risk for certain diseases. Not to mention, they add a delicious, new dimension to your meals!

To celebrate the wonderful memories you’ve made this summer while ushering in the new season, try our Toasted Walnut and Raspberry Salad with Goat Cheese. Summery raspberries commingle with Pete’s Living Greens Red Butter Lettuce, the crisp root veggie jicama, crunchy sugar snap peas and refreshing cucumbers. Rounding out the dish, walnuts (the ultimate brain food) and creamy goat cheese complement the diverse fresh ingredients resulting in the ultimate power salad.

Toasted Walnut & Raspberry Salad with Goat Cheese  
Yields 4
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Prep Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
  1. Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette
  2. 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries, measured after they are pureed and deseeded or ⅔ cup seedless raspberry preserves
  3. ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons raspberry vinegar or red wine vinegar
  4. 2 tablespoons honey
  5. 1 teaspoon salt
  6. ¼ teaspoon pepper
  7. ½ cup toasted walnut oil
  8. Salad
  9. 2 heads Pete's Living Greens Red Butter Lettuce, torn into pieces
  10. 2 Persian cucumbers or ½ an English cucumber, thinly sliced
  11. ½ medium jicama, cut into matchstick slices
  12. 1 cup sugar snap peas, string removed
  13. 1 cup fresh raspberries
  14. ½ cup goat cheese, crumbled
  15. ½ cup walnuts, toasted
  1. Puree raspberries in a blender. Pour into a fine mesh sieve and use the back of a spoon to gently coax the puree through into a measuring cup with a spout. Discard the seeds left in the sieve. If using raspberry preserves, warm in the microwave to liquefy. Add vinegar, honey, salt, and pepper and whisk together. Slowly drizzle in walnut oil while continuing to whisk.
  2. Mix all salad ingredients and serve with dressing.
  1. Sugar spiced walnuts are a great alternative to toasted walnuts.
Pete's Living Greens Blog http://www.livegourmet.com/wordpress/

Eat Right after a Summer of Fun in the Sun with Help from Michelle Stern


Back-to-school is upon us. Between stocking up on supplies, adjusting to a new schedule and after-school activities,  it can be challenging to maintain a wel- balanced diet. Not to mention, a summer of vacationing, camp and barbecues doesn’t always support the healthiest of eating choices. To help you and your youngsters start the school year off right, we’ve asked Michelle Stern, founder of What’s Cooking with Kids and author of The Whole Family Cookbook, to lend her expertise on tips for families to eat healthy any day of the year.


What's Cooking with Kids Founder Michelle Stern
Michelle Stern

Live Gourmet: How do you recommend bringing more balanced healthy meals back into your family’s routine?

Michelle Stern: We love to bring healthy snacks with us when we are on-the-go.  Carrots and hummus, bags of English peas, and dried fruit are part of our regular snacking routine — and with the appropriate waste-free food containers, they are easy to take with us.  But when we get home, I try to get the kids to help me plan some menus for the week. When they are invested in family meals, they are more eager to eat the fruits of their labor, so to speak.

LG: As an educator, what do you think is the biggest challenge to get kids to eat healthy?

MS: I think that many kids simply aren’t regularly exposed to healthy choices.  For families on a budget, they may worry that spending money on new veggies is too risky, and so they stick with tried-and-true foods. By exposing kids to fruits and vegetables IN an educational setting, educators can assume some of that risk and the kids will come home from school ready and eager to try the new foods and help the family make good food choices.

LG: Do you have any favorite back-to-school lunch ideas?

Eat homemade healthy cup of noodles
A healthy alternative lunch idea from Michelle Stern. Recipe can be found at http://whatscookingwithkids.com/homemade-cup-of-noodles/

MS: In my recent blog post on Waste-Free lunch essentials, I have a free downloadable Lunch Menu planner to make packing lunches easier for families.  Kids can get tired of sandwiches so it’s fun to mix things up a bit.  Try using tortilla rollups filled with cream cheese and jam, or hummus and cucumbers!  Or mini frittatas made in muffin tins pack a huge protein punch and can be easily customized to suit each child’s tastes.

LG: What is your advice to families who have picky eaters?

MS: Keep trying! It takes 8-12 exposures of a new food before it’s often accepted. It’s important that you don’t give up. Don’t pressure kids to eat certain foods. Instead, be sure there is something on the table that they will eat and then let them make choices.  Eating is one of the few times that kids can exercise control in their lives….and it can easily become a battleground if we add too much pressure.

To learn about What’s Cooking With Kids go to and follow: www.whatscookingwithkids.com ; Facebook: facebook.com/whatscookingkids; Instagram: @whatscookingwithkids

You Put Greens in THAT? Unique Recipes That Rock.


Different varieties of lettuce and watercress are displayed on a purple backgroundThough crisp lettuce leaves elevate the simplest of salads, greens also make unexpected yet delicious additions to a number of dishes. There are a plethora of reasons to include our varieties of Living Greens from breakfast to even dessert. 

Here are a few:

Not only are they tasty and add satisfying texture, our Living Greens include a number of health benefits. Romaine lettuce has more vitamin A than a carrot, and is a rich source of vitamin K (a key role in helping blood clot). Butter lettuce also contains significant amounts of Vitamin K and folate. While adding watercress to your diet can help improve your skin. In a study reported by the Daily Mail, “10 out of 11 female volunteers experienced visible improvements to their skin after just four weeks of adding one bag of watercress a day to their diet.”

To receive green’s maximum health benefits while testing your culinary creativity, try a few of our favorite non-traditional recipes. 

Our favorites:

  1. Food 52’s Squid with Watercress Salsa Verde. Fresh sauted squid is a healthier alternative than its breaded and fried calamari counterpart. Not to mention, superfood watercress boosts the dish’s nutritional value.
  2. Andrew Zimmer’s Artichoke, Peas, Fava & Lettuce Stew. Simple yet  flavorful, the veggie one  pot dish is the perfect August supper.
  3. Filmore and Union’s Watercress Banana Homemade Ice Cream. Before your bananas turn to mush in the heat, combine them with peppery watercress to create a uniquely flavored summer treat.

For more ideas, go to our Pinterest board You Put Greens in That.