Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch!

    Nia: Thurs at 9 am

    Yin Yoga: Mons at 11:30 am

    Gentle Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:30 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • My Bloggey Past

  • ******

    Chose a month above to visit archives, or click below to visit a page.

Posts Tagged ‘sugar’

Another Case Where Less Might Be More

Posted by terrepruitt on June 8, 2016

One day I was in the store and I decided to buy sugar.  I was in the Grocery Outlet.  Do you have those in your area?  Have you ever been to one?  My parents used to go and I wrinkled my nose at that, thinking it was a bunch of weird off-brand stuff.  Then one day I went in there and I discovered brand name stuff for about half the price as you find in regular grocery stores.  Granted most of the stuff in there is snack food and basically over-processed food, but we do eat bread and often times you can find it there for half the price as the other stores.  I had seen C&H Pure Cane sugar there before so I thought I would drop in and get some.  I mean, if I am going to buy what I consider to be less-than-healthy food, I might as well spend less.  Well, they didn’t have any and I didn’t want to go to another store, because really?  It’s sugar.  So I saw something that attracted my attention.  It was  Zulka Morena Pure Cane Sugar.  The package said that it was less processed than other sugar and it was organic so I thought I would give it a try.  I discovered something interesting about it.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitThis sugar is not white like C&H Pure Cane white sugar yet it is not brown either.  It is off white.  Well, when I used it I notice things in it.  What type of things, I don’t know.  They could be pieces of bugs or leaves.  They kind of look like pieces of leaves.  But it somewhat turned me off of using it.  I put it in my sugar container, but I would reach for some other sugar I had before I reached for it.

One day my husband told me to stop by the store to pick up sugar because he was going to make hummingbird food, I said we have sugar.  I actually thought I had seen another bag of white sugar in the closet, but when I got home and looked all we had was the Zulka Morena.  It is used like regular sugar.  It is “regular” sugar it is just processed less.  So I talked him into using it.  He didn’t want to.**updated 04.29.18

Well, he made the food and it came out kinda tan.  It was not clear/white like when we use our familiar white sugar.  It wasn’t cloudy, it was just colored.  I was kind of concerned, thinking perhaps it wouldn’t be good for the birds.  I wondered if they would care.  I wondered if they would notice a difference.  I wondered if they would like it.

The reason I had him make the food (he is the hummingbird food maker in the house so when it is needed, he makes it) was because I had seen some hummingbirds flitting around the empty feeders.  So I was thinking when he put full ones up they would be there.  But there were not. I was worried.  I thought that the food must not be good.  I thought they didn’t like it.  Usually, when we see them at the feeders and we put food out they are right there!  But they weren’t.

I am gonna say it took at least a week for them to come.  But then, it seemed like when I looked out the window, they were always there.  But oddly enough, they were only at one feeder.  Usually they will eat off of both.  One more than the other, but both.  This time – I had seen them at the other feeder once or twice, but they actually emptied one out before they used the other.  So that means that the unused one was there for even longer than the first one.

Our feeders are in the sun.  SUN.  Sometimes the bottles start to have stuff grow in them.  This isn’t good for the birds.  So it is a drag when that happens.  And sometimes it can happen fast.  I mentioned the sun because I figure that the sun is a contributing factor to the growth in the bottles.  It could be the shade.  Either way, sometimes it happens really fast.

You may or may not know that hummingbirds don’t suck the nectar out of the feeders.  Their beaks are not straws.  I had thought that until I saw one stick its tongue out.  So they actually stick their tongue into the feeder.  I believe that the way they eat helps contribute to the stuff growing in the bottles.  So a busy feeder with a few hot days stuff can grow pretty fast.

Well, it is my opinion – I don’t think my hubby agrees with me – that this sugar does not grow stuff as fast.  We had the bottles out there a long time and there wasn’t the weird stringy black stuff that has seen to pop up really fast in the feeders in the batches we made before these last ones.  I think it is cool.

I just cleaned the feeders and my hubby is going to come home and make food tonight.  So we will have them up again by tomorrow.  I am going to watch them again closely and see.  I know there are many things that can contribute to the stuff growing in them, but it seems our last few batches have gotten it awful fast.  So we will see how this new batch fares.

At least the birds seem to like the sugar.  They don’t care about the color.  Who cares that it is not clear, as long as it is not red (the red dye is not good for the birds).

Do you feed the hummingbirds?  Do you have hummingbird feeders?  What type of sugar do you use? What is your recipe?  What type of sugar do you use?

**updated 04.29.18 – please see comments below, as this type of sugar has traces of iron in it and hummingbirds have a low tolerance to iron.

Posted in Birds, Misc | Tagged: , , , , , | 13 Comments »

She’s No Longer The One For Me

Posted by terrepruitt on November 5, 2015

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia TechniqueArgh!  The other day I made an annoying discovering.  I am somewhat ashamed I didn’t discover it before, yet at the same time I am somewhat angry that it is even something someone would need to – could actually – discover.  There is sugar in my salt!  WHAT?  WHY IS THERE SUGAR IN MY SALT?  Yeah, that is why I am angry.  I never even thought to look at the ingredients of the salt.  But actually I kinda believe I have before and this is not something that has always been the case – sugar in the salt – but I am not sure.  Why is there dextrose in salt?

Dextrose is a simple sugar made from corn.  There is no need for sugar to be in salt.  The only reason I can think of is that the manufacturers have a desire to make it more addicting.  I am sure that, if you have a TV or have any contact with social media, you have seen and/or heard that there is sugar in ALL TYPES OF THINGS.  Things where there really doesn’t need to be sugar.  And you may have heard, while you were watching TV or perusing Facebook, or scrolling through Twitter, that it is believed that sugar is addictive.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia TechniqueSo that is the only reason I can think of as to why food manufactures would put it in practically everything.

Some foods that are made to have less fat have to have additional sugar to make them taste acceptable, but again, that would also make them addictive.  And, again, it is well-know that “less fat” just means more sugar.  When eating foods that are known to have sugar, such as cookies or cupcakes it is understandable they have sugar.  But it is annoying when food manufactures use sugar in things you don’t expect because there doesn’t need to be sugar in them.  Like most salad dressings, spices, milk, breads, pasta, ya know things that are not traditionally made with sugar.

So, it is with sadness that I say good-bye to that girl I have grown up with all my life, or as long as I can remember.  Good-bye Morton salt, I am disgusted that there is sugar in your salt and I will no longer be purchasing it.  I will be spending my money on salt that is just that, salt.  You are no longer the one.

Did you know there is sugar in Morton salt?  So you use Morton salt? Did you, like me, grow up using Morton’s salt?

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Venting Gets Me Good

Posted by terrepruitt on January 31, 2013

I go to Starbucks when I have a gift card.  I like Starbucks Chai Tea Lattes.  When I first started getting them they were almost too spicy for me.  Then they seemed to change a bit.  They got less flavorful.  Then one time I got one at a store I don’t normally frequent and I thought my teeth were going to fall out.  It was soooooo sweet.  Yes, I know that the fancy drinks at Starbucks and other coffee houses are a huge source of sugar.  That is ONE reason why I don’t buy them.  I DO have them on occasion when I am blessed with receiving a gift card.  To me they are a nice treat.  But this one hurt my teeth and my stomach.  I chalked it up to this store making them different.  But then I went to the store I usually go to and it was the same thing.  Ugh.  I posted a Facebook status asking if they had changed their recipe.  I know places and manufacturers do that all the time.  One of the responses I received was to make my own Chai.  The response even included the recipe.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaA few days after that I was in the grocery store and I actually remembered while I was in the spice aisle that I needed cardamom to make the chai.  I looked and looked and when I finally found it I almost choked.  It was $12.99.  I didn’t realize it was that expensive.

So, again, I posted on Facebook, I said that I would stick to using my gift cards at Starbucks instead of spend $13.00.  And again the replies were awesome.  People near and far reminded me that I live in an area rich with many cultures and that I could find cardamom at Indian Spice stores.  The major benefits to that would be that it would be cheaper and more than likely better.

But before I could remember to get to a store one of my amazing friends brought me a little box of it.  She is awesome like that.  She frequents an affordable spice shop so she picked me up some.

Here is the recipe that Danielle Woermann (a Nia Black Belt) posted for me on Facebook.  I am unaware of where she got it.

Masala Chai. Serves four.

Boil 3 cups (.7 liters) of water with
4 cloves
2 pinches ground nutmeg
2 pinches ground cinnamon
2 pinches ground cardamom
1/2 inch (1.27 cm) piece of grated fresh ginger

Add 2 tea bags (black, green, redbush, etc.) and simmer for 2 minutes. Add 1 cup (.2 liters) almond milk or milk of your choice, and heat until hot, but not boiling. Add sweetener of your choice. Serve and enjoy!

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaI decided to measure my “pinches” so that I could have a more accurate measure and adjust accordingly.  I used an 1/8 of a teaspoon as a “pinch”.  I think that I need to work on it a bit.  Either the person doing the pinching who created this recipe has REALLY LARGE pinches or they like a more mellow tea.  I think that this might be really good if I made it ahead of time and let all the flavors really seep into the water.  The time that is stated in the recipe didn’t seem to do that.  Also it does help if, when you are drinking it, you actually get some of the spices in your mouth . . . . which also makes for an oddly textured and a bit chewy tea.  But I’m ok with that.

I think I might experiment with chopping the ginger.  For some reason I don’t might little tiny chunks of fresh ginger as opposed to what came off my grater . . . . it was odd.

That is a GREAT thing about recipes though, right?  I love to try them the way they are then adjust them to my tastes.  Maybe this is one that you can make and enjoy — either adjusting or not.

Do you like Chai Tea?  Do you have a recipe?  Doesn’t this one sound yummy?

Posted in "Recipes" | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

Beer Bread – Less Sugar, More Herbs

Posted by terrepruitt on August 27, 2011

I would not be surprised to learn that I was one of the last people to learn about beer bread.  This past June I was at my mom’s and she said she would whip up some beer bread.  As much as I love bread I have never tried to make it because, yeast is a scary mystery to me.  So I was curious as to how she was going to “whip” it up.  I knew that to mean quick and not whipped like whipping cream so I wondered how that could be done.  Yeast has to set, right?  She and my niece did it and I was amazed and thrilled.  It is so easy.  There are really thousands of sites on the internet that have beer bread recipes.  I found that out when I went looking for recipes that call for “self-rising” flour.

Nia classes, Nia teacher, Nia San Jose, Nia Los Gatos, San Jose Nia, Nia teacher loves breadMost of the recipes — the easy ones are 3 cups of self-rising flour, 3 tablespoons of sugar, and 12 ounces of beer.  Bake at 375°F for about an hour.  The first time I made it I actually handled the dough too much and I think it came out tough.  I had mixed it a lot then, had a hard time putting it in the pan.  It kind of sticks to whatever you use to try to push it to the corners of the pan.  Then AFTER I had spent some time fitting it into the pan I realized I should have greased the pan so I popped the dough out, greased the pan, and spent a considerable amount of time getting the dough back into the corners.  Kinda made it tough.

The next time I was careful NOT to play with the dough so much.  And it came out better.  Plus I used less sugar.  I know it is only three tablespoons, but it makes the bread too sweet for my tastes so I probably used about a tablespoon less.  I added salt (yeah, I did), garlic, and cheese.  I used Asiago because that is what I had and I wanted something with a gentle bite to it.  It turned out REALLY good.

I am not sure if I made it again before this very last time.  Hmmmmm . . . . can’t remember.  I don’t think so.  Even though I love bread, my hubby is not so much the bread fan, so that means I end up eating most of it and I don’t need to do that.  Even though I love that fact that there are less chemicals and stuff in this bread it is still an uber refined carb and I can always use to eat less of those!

This last time I made it with two tablespoons of sugar.  I have yet to pour the butter on top as most recipes instruct.  My hubby and I usually put butter on it so I don’t feel we need to have double butter.  In this batch I used garlic salt, garlic powder, and marjoram.  I love marjoram.  So I sprinkled some into the dough.  It is good.  It could even do with more marjoram.  I just wasn’t sure so I did use a lot, but now I know it works I can put more in.  You can barely see the flakes in the bread.

I still want to try it with other herbs.  Or maybe even a heavier beer?  And definitely even LESS sugar.  I might even try eliminating the sugar all together.  Since this really is a well-known recipe and I am thinking many of you have made it, what have you used?  Have you added any other herbs?  What typed of beer do you use?  Have any of you tried it with a gluten free flour?  Does it work?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »