Corn, Peach, And Tomato Salad With Feta

I know y’all are all getting your sweaters out, and making pumpkin spice everything, but please let me enjoy my last few weeks of summer! Its going to be in the 80’s, maybe even 90 this week, so I’m going to get one more paddle board day in on Sunday, and I will be wearing shorts til October!

I found some delicious corn, heirloom tomatoes, and local peaches at the market this week and put together this quick and easy summer salad. You basically chop all your ingredients, make a quick dressing of lemon juice and olive oil, and that’s it!

Try it and let me know what you think.

Corn, Peach and Tomato Salad


  • 4 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 2 small tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 peaches, chopped
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
  • Juice from one lemon
  • 2 Tbsp Olive oil
  • salt and pepper


1. Make dressing. In a large bowl, whisk together the juice from 1/2 a lemon, 2 tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper. Taste, and adjust seasonings if needed (I really like lemon, so start with half, then add more if you like).

2. Add corn, tomatoes, peaches, feta and basil to the dressing. Toss to combine.

3. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Anne McCranie is a Portland, Oregon based Personal Trainer and Licensed Massage Therapist. She offers this recipe to tickle your taste buds. Please see your medical professional for specific dietary advice.

Low Sodium Ranch Dressing

My friend Katherine Green has just released 30 Minute Low Sodium Cookbook, and I’ve been having so much fun trying out different recipes.

During the recent heat wave, we’ve been eating a dinner salad at least once a week. Typically this is some combination of chicken, pasta, and whatever veggies are in the fridge. This week I dressed our big salad with Katherine’s low sodium ranch dressing.

Ranch gets a bad rap. This is not the gloppy, store bought, full of unpronounceable ingredients, ranch. For this recipe you simply add a few spices to yogurt and sour cream. Light, easy and delicious.

Try it and let me know what you think.

Low Sodium Ranch Dressing


  • 3/4 cup low fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup low fat sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 3/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons milk (optional)


1. In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sour cream, vinegar, parsley, dill, onion powder, garlic powder, and pepper until smooth. If using the milk, pour in 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking until the dressing reaches your desired consistency.

2. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Variation tip: For a spicy ranch, add 1/2 teaspoon of paprika and up to 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.

PER SERVING (2 tablespoons): calories: 30; Total fat: 1 g; Saturated fat: 1g; Sodium: 17 mg; Carbohydrates: 2g; Fiber: less than 1g; Protein: 3g; Calcium: 40 mg; Potassium: 63mg.

My hope is this recipe inspires you to try something new. This is not meant as specific dietary advice. YOU are in charge of deciding what is best for you as far as a healthy diet, and taking good care of you. The link above is not an affiliate link, I do not benefit financially if you click through to purchase Katherine’s cookbook. I am hoping that you will join me in supporting a local author.

Healthy Recipe – Cilantro Kale Salad With Buttermilk Dressing

Here’s a spring salad recipe to brighten your day. You’ll need a food processor and a sharp knife. Try it and let me know what you think.

p.s. I get super annoyed when I’m scrolling a page looking for a recipe and they post it waaay down at the bottom, so I’m starting with the recipe here. If you’re wondering why buttermilk is “healthy” keep reading down below the recipe for my notes.

Cilantro Kale Salad With Buttermilk Dressing


  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 5 oz baby kale
  • 5 radishes
  • 5 Tbsps buttermilk
  • 3 Tbsps sour cream
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper


  1. Wash and de stem cilantro. I usually soak mine in cold water, swish them around real good, and drain. Do this three times to get all the dirt off. You’ll be using the stems in the dressing, and the leaves as garnish. If you really like cilantro, and you are short on time or patience, you could put most of the leaves and stems right in the processor and not even mess around with picking the leaves off which is the most time consuming part of this recipe.
  2. Rinse (if needed) and roughly chop your baby kale into bite sized pieces. Spin the leaves in a spinner or pat them dry in a kitchen towel to remove as much moisture as possible before you dress your salad. (if you bought prewashed kale you can skip this step).
  3. Thinly slice radishes.
  4. Make dressing – combine buttermilk, sour cream, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and either the cilantro stems, or about half the bunch of cilantro (if you’re doing the lazy way I mentioned above) in a food processor. Process until combined.
  5. In a large bowl toss kale and radishes with dressing. Garnish with cilantro leaves.

This is a great, sturdy make ahead salad you could bring to a potluck, or meal prep on the weekend for your lunches during the week.

A note about my “healthy” recipes.

Buttermilk gets a real bad rap. Buttermilk is the sour probiotic laden liquid left over after churning milk to make butter.

Years ago I can remember my grannie enjoying a cold glass of buttermilk. She was raised out in the country during the depression and they did not waste anything. When she was a child, her family churned their own butter and as a result they had buttermilk they kept in the ice box.

Recently I had some leftover buttermilk from a cake recipe, so I stated researching it. I compared the labels with the yogurt I eat regularly and turns out buttermilk has more protein and less sugar than yogurt. It can also be easier on your tummy if you are sensitive to dairy. My schedule and meeting with clients means I’m moving my body throughout the day and sometimes I struggle with timing my meals. A small glass of buttermilk comes in handy when I need a light snack but don’t want a bloated belly.

If you enjoy kefir or other drinkable yogurts but want a lower sugar option, the next time you are at the grocery store compare labels and see how buttermilk stacks up. Look for grams of protein, and grams of sugar and you might be surprised.

As with all these recipe and dietary suggestions, you are in charge of taking good care of you! I’m a personal trainer and licensed massage therapist. I am not your doctor nor am I providing and dietary prescription for you.

Please see your medical professional for specific dietary advice.

Fiesta Beef And Cornbread Casserole

My sweet neighbor Margaret passed away this month and I wanted to share her recipe.

Click here to read her obituary.

Margaret grew up in Oklahoma and often shared with me fascinating stories about her childhood. As kids during the depression they were lucky if they got one new pair of shoes each year. She moved with her family to California, then later to Sellwood, and her and her husband raised their kids here. In addition to her biological family, she was known for “adopting” people. She made sure everyone she knew was well taken care of.

We would joke about the very Southern tradition of never returning an empty tupperware (so very rude!) so if I had given her something, and she didn’t have anything to give me in return, she would put an orange, or a cookie or something small in the container before giving it back to me. Most of the time it was her giving me yummy treats, from her famous chocolate chip cookies, to casseroles, cakes, and fresh veggies out of her garden. I rarely went home empty handed.

Here she is posing with me at her 90th birthday party.

Almost right up until her death, she kept up her house, cooking and sharing food with her neighbors and friends. She loved working in her yard, and feeding the squirrels, and crows. One day she shared a funny story about seeing a crow in her birdbath washing off a hot dog. I’m not sure where the hot dog came from, or how the crow dragged in up into the birdbath, but you know how crafty crows can be.

She made pickles every year and gave them away as Christmas gifts. She shared tomatoes and roses from her garden. A few years ago she made this fiesta casserole. I told her how much I liked it and she wrote out the recipe by hand (see photo below). Oh to have this penmanship!

If you’d like to pay your respects, or share stories with her friends and family, a memorial will be held for her February 5th at the Living Room coffee shop 8524 SE 17th from 4-6 pm.


I made her recipe, with a few changes. I used fresh peppers and tomatoes rather than jarred salsa, and organic beef from Trader Joe’s. I also doubled the peppers and added zucchini so this ended up making two batches of chili. I doubled the cornbread as well (I wanted to make sure there was plenty on cornbread on top). If you are not feeding an army you could easily cut this recipe in half.


Check it out and let me know what you think.

Fiesta Casserole

Chili Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 2.25 oz can sliced black olives
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (or 3-4 cups fresh)
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels (thawed)
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Cornbread Ingredients:

  • Two boxes of Jiffy cornbread mix
  • two eggs
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk (or whole milk)
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (plus more for garnish if you like)
  • 4 oz can of green chilies
  • 1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a large, deep, ovenproof skillet, sauté onions, celery, peppers, zucchini, garlic, and beef til meat is no longer pink, and veggies are soft (6-8 min).
  3. Add tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, oregano, olives, tomatoes, corn, broth, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 5-10 minutes.


Prepare cornbread:

  1. Mix cornbread per package directions (mix + eggs + milk).
  2. Add chopped cilantro and green chilies to cornbread mixture. Stir until just combined (there may be lumps). Spoon cornbread mixture over chili.
  3. Bake 30-35 minutes until cornbread is golden and cooked through.
  4. Remove from oven and sprinkle with cheese, and put under the boiler. Broil on high until the cheese is bubbling (watch it closely so it does not burn).
  5. Let stand for five minutes before serving.


Anne McCranie is a Portland (Sellwood), Oregon based personal trainer and licensed massage therapist. She offers this recipe to tickle your taste buds. Please see your medical professional for specific dietary advice.

Moroccan Lamb Stew Recipe

How does a warm, spiced, hearty bowl of stew sound right now?

Have I told you how much I love my crock pot? It’s a great option for me because I can prep our meal during my breaks, then our dinner is cooking away while I work, and ready to eat after I wrap my last evening class.

This type of stew actually tastes better the next day, so it’s great for leftovers.

A note about crock pot cooking, the liquid does not cook out like it would if you were making this on a stovetop. Start with the listed amount of broth, then once its cooking, you can check it to see if you like the consistency. If you’d like it more “soupy” and less “stewy”, add more broth.

You can also make this on the stovetop, in a large stock pot. When you get to step 6, just turn the heat down low, and cover the pot, Check it every thirty minutes or so to make sure it still has enough liquid.

Your whole house is about to smell amazing!

Try this stew and let me know what you think…


  • 2 pounds lamb stew meat cut onto 1 ½ inch cubes (I found a 2.5 lb shoulder roast and had the butcher cut into cubes). 
  • 2 teaspoons of each: salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, and cumin seeds.
  • 1/2 red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil.
  • 1 onion, diced.
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped. 
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste.
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar.
  • 2 tablespoons honey.
  • 1  1/4 cups chicken stock.
  • 1, 15 ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained.
  • ¼ cup raisins or dried apricots (chopped).
  • 1 bunch of collard greens, chopped.


  1. Rub the meat with all the spices. 
  2. Let it rest, covered, in the fridge for a couple hours.
  3. In a large stock pot, brown meat in oil for 5 minutes, stirring every so often.
  4. Add onion and garlic and saute for 2 minutes.
  5. Add tomato paste, vinegar, honey, and chicken stock, and warm it through (stir it for another minute or so).
  6. Carefully transfer meat mixture to the crock pot and put the lid on.
  7. Cook on high for 4 hours.
  8. Add chopped collards, and garbanzos and cook for another 2 hours.

Serve with cooked couscous or rice.



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