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Just because it’s a holiday doesn’t mean you have to disappoint your inner Organic Elitist.  After all, Passover is a celebration of freedom and choices.

If you usually eat organic bread, why not eat organic unleavened bread?  Hand made Shmurah Organic Matzoh is available online and at select grocery stores.  Don’t stop there.  If you love organic chocolate, Vosges Haut-Chocolat makes bite-size organic chocolate covered matzoh.  If you prefer pesticide-free apples, use organic apples when making charoset.  Better yet, mix the apples with organic ingredients: walnuts, cinnamon, and wine.  And while Manischewitz is tradition, organic wine will make a worthy replacement or a delicious additional bottle for the table.  Even Elijah might appreciate a cup of organic wine this year.

cracked-matzoh

From the Shank Bone to the Afikoman, there is sure to be an organic counterpart for every item on the Seder menu.  Bread might be out of the question, but there is no rule against organics.  So, lean to the left and enjoy.  L’Chaim!

At this year’s Easter Egg Hunt, be sure to walk away with more than just the traditional dyed, painted, and plastic ovals.  Try filling your basket with organic eggs fresh from the farm.  Sure, they may not be as colorful as those hidden by the Easter Bunny, but they are delicious, nutritious, and easy to make.  Not to mention versatile.  Omelet, sunny-side up, poached, or scrambled are just a few standard breakfast favorites.  Hard-boiled eggs also make the perfect mid-day snack or salad ingredient.  The best part?  Any way you crack them, eggs are high in protein and rich in vitamins.

farm fresh organic eggs

The fresher the eggs, the better they will taste.  Unlike cartons in the supermarket that travel for months before taking their place on a refrigerated shelf, eggs bought at a farmer’s market or on a farm are usually packaged within days of purchase.  They will therefore not only taste better than the supermarket counterpart, but they will last for at least two months after purchase.  To find a farm or a farmer’s market near you, search the comprehensive Regional Farm & Food Project Directory.  Of course, farm fresh eggs are not always realistic.  For a trustworthy supermarket staple, stick with Organic Valley.  However, if you can get the eggs straight from the farmer, it is well worth your while.

The bottom line: no dozen will taste better than organic eggs fresh from the farm.  It’s a risk-free no-brainer.  Go ahead, put them all in one basket.

This Valentine’s Day, don’t ignore the Organic Elitist palette.  While a box of Godiva chocolates is the romantic cliché, an organically-inclined significant other might appreciate a more thoughtful box of love.

Green & Black’s organic chocolate is always my number-one recommendation, but unfortunately the UK-based chocolatier only sells its gift boxes abroad.  I suppose one could wrap a bar of chocolate with red ribbon, but that would be rather boring.  Instead, go with a worthy alternative such as Terra Nostra which sells mouthwatering truffles.  Its box is plain, but it offers the traditional Valentine’s chocolate bites.  For something with a little more presentation, Dagoba sells a 16-piece box of Tasting Square Favors.  Both of these options can be purchased online or at your local health food store.

Happy Valentine’s Day! Indulge responsibly.

chocolate-hearts

I have never been stung.  When I see a bee within ten feet of me, I panic.  Yet despite my fear of stingers, I know that the black and yellow insects are hard at work making the best natural sweetener on Earth: honey. 

The busy bees’ creation is more than just sticky and sweet, it can calm a sore throat or a stomach ache and it is a healthy way to get a boost of energy.  Honey has also been found to restore damaged skin and speed up the healing process of a cut or wound.

As always, the real stuff is the best stuff.  Organic raw honey that is made locally contains properties from the environment that can help boost your immune system accordingly.  The local pollen found in local honey also protects against allergies.  In general, local or not, organic raw honey will offer the best health benefits compared to other forms of the substance.

 Really Raw Honey

To purchase local honey, visit your nearby farmer’s market or check your local health food store.  If you can not purchase local honey, an excellent product that can be found in some health food stores is Really Raw Honey.  Taken from hives in upstate New York, both its taste and quality are superb.

So, thanks to the bees for a creation that is sweeter than sugar and packing health benefits.  And a special thanks to the beekeepers for braving bee stings in order to package the ultimate Organic Elitist treat.

It’s that time of year.  Snow, hot chocolate, ice skating, sitting by the fire… and the common cold.  No matter how much orange juice you drink or how many times a day you wash your hands, it’s hard to avoid catching everyone’s favorite upper respiratory bug.  But when you feel the symptoms creeping up on you, there is something you can do to keep them at bay.  At the first sign of a sneeze or a stuffy nose, take two Coldcalm tablets every two hours up to six times a day.  You should feel better in no time.

Coldcalm

Coldcalm is made by Boiron, a French-based manufacturer of homeopathic products.  Each box contains sixty quick-dissolving tablets designed to relieve sneezing, a runny nose, nasal congestion, sinus pain, and all the other delightful symptoms that come with catching a cold.  The over-the-counter, homeopathic drug can be found at health food stores and certain pharmacies.

Don’t let winter get the best of you: be prepared with a box of Coldcalm.  The common cold won’t stand a chance.

Located in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village, GustOrganics is the first 100% USDA certified organic restaurant in the nation.  Unlike other restaurants where perhaps the only potential organic offering is the organic baby greens appetizer, everything at Gusto is organic.  So, if you want to eat an all-organic meal out of the house, it is the place to be.

GustOrganics Bar

Created by Argentinean-born businessman Alberto Gonzalez, GustOrganics’s menu is Latin-inspired and changes daily based on fresh produce offerings.  The restaurant also maintains the world’s first all-organic bar with an entertaining cocktail menu to match.  For a non-alcoholic beverage, the staff makes natural fruit blend drinks such as the Fresco with organic mangos, orange juice, and agave.  Or, to accompany breakfast or brunch, diners can order freshly squeezed orange juice.  And for all you water snobs, Gusto serves purified water.  For free.

GustOrganics Tables

Not only is everything from the food to the beverages organic, but the entire restaurant is green.  Certified as a Green Restaurant by the Green Restaurant Association, Gusto uses solar lighting and wind energy, the tables are made of recycled wood from old barns, and the servers wear organic uniforms.  You name the green practice – they do it.

Open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, as well as take-out and delivery, the restaurant’s atmosphere is rustic and inviting.   The dishes are superb, the food is high quality, and the prices are reasonable.  GustOrganics is a must for any Organic Elitist.

When you hear the words “Little Bear” you might think of a stuffed animal or those adorable plastic bear honey containers.  I think of Little Bear/Bearitos, the maker of delicious all natural snacks including my favorite chips.

Bearitos All Natural Tortilla Chips are perfectly crunchy with just the right touch of salt, and more flavor than your average tortilla chip.  The chips are even cooked and packed the same day as the organic corn is ground to ensure its exceptional taste.  Ingredients are also limited to organic yellow corn, expeller pressed natural canola oil, natural sunflower oil, safflower, and sea salt.  This list of ingredients is more than 20 items shorter than the usual non-natural, non-organic chips.  With that, Bearitos certainly lives up to The Organic Elitist saying “the fewer ingredients, the better.”

Bearitos All Natural Tortilla Chips

Fewer ingredients of higher quality don’t just make the Little Bear’s chips taste better, it makes them healthier.  The all natural snack has more desirable nutrition facts than typical tortilla chips do.  To further illustrate this point, let’s compare The Organic Elitist chip choice to Doritos Cooler Ranch, assuming a serving size of 12 chips.  While Doritos have 140 calories with 63 of those calories from fat, Bearitos have only 112 calories with 40 calories from fat.  Doritos also have a total fat content of 7 grams and sodium content of 170 milograms.  By contrast, the all natural chips have only 5 grams of fat and 44 milograms of sodium – 126 mg less than its conventional counterpart.

Better taste, better ingredients, better nutrition facts.  What’s not to love?  Crunch away.

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