I’ve changed…and moved!

New JSN Header-justsayingnonono.com

I thought this blog wasn’t  getting any traffic, but I have noticed that a few people have subscribed! Thank you! I have relocated here:


There some much more that’s new and fresh there. See you soon!

Try This! Asofoetida


Yes a funny name for a spice with an even funnier smell.  Asofoetida is a spice indigenous to India that is a resin the exudes from an underground rhizome that’s then dried.  The smell when raw is rank to say the least! It’s so strong that you have to store it in it’s own airtight container so it doesn’t mess with your other spices. It has a pungency all it’s own. So why even mess with it? Well, when you cook it, the flavor mellows alot and becomes sort of garlic-ky. If you are into umami, this is one spice that should be in your arsenal.

Check out your Indian market (brick and mortar or online) to find this. If you can’t find it, of course onions and garlic will do, but we all know about those already! Expand a little and try something new! Oh, and when I run out of onions and garlic, or don’t have onion or garlic powder, I reach for this! You don’t need alot of it to make a statement!

Sugar: The Bitter Truth

I was hipped to this video from Heidi at Adventures of a Gluten Free Mom, and after only 30 minutes of watching, I knew that it was going to be the best hour and a half I would spend in my day. I’ll say it again! As long as this presentation is, it is totally worth watching.  Dr. Robert Lustig does an excellent job of explaining why sugar, in the forms of sucrose, fructose (not fructose that occurs naturally in fruits and veggies) and HFCS, is poison and why it is so prevalent in our diets today.

I’m date-able!

date syrup

click for source

I absolutely love yacon syrup! It’s syrupy, low glycemic sweetness is perfect for many types of recipes, especially when you want to make trail mix bars or a nut and seed crunch. The problem is, it has nearly doubled in price within the last year. Combined with it’s difficulty to purchase (it has been sold out several times at my favorite online vendor), it’s starting to become one the sweeteners that I can’t readily recommend anymore.

As a result, I have been trying other types of syrupy sweeteners. Carob molasses works well, but if you don’t have a Middle Eastern or international grocery store in your area, it will be equally hard to find. I have tried coconut nectar as well. Honestly, it gives me a sugar headache like agave does, so I don’t buy or use it often.

I have been doing well eating high sugar fruits, such as bananas, grapes, mangoes and dates, in moderation, without any adverse affects. I’m very happy about that progress! So I decided to try date syrup. I like date syrup for alot of reasons. It is very easy to make myself. Dates are really easy to find. Date syrup is a whole food sweetener that does not need any additional processing. The cost to make my own yields more than a regular sized bottle of agave!

Date Syrup

*10-12 Medjool dates or 1 cup Deglet Noor dates (the kind often found in packages)

*1 cup of water

Soak your dates in water for 45mins-1 hour. Process dates and water in a food processor, blender or hand blender until smooth. Store in your fridge for up to 3 weeks.

*Sometimes lemon juice can be added to preserve your syrup longer

*You can add different spices to add interesting flavors

When life gives you a garden….

Well….you garden!

I gotta tell you, it has been most therapeutic! Besides my Mom, there had been some other events that hit my family hard, and required me to focus my attention on my family’s immediate needs. Around the same time my mom was diagnosed, I learn that a spot had opened up at the community garden! I had been on the waiting list for a year!

I initially thought that I wouldn’t have time to do any gardening, but my family encouraged me to go ahead since they know that it’s something that I really enjoy. When I was in college, I kept a small garden on the side of our house during the summers. That was my first time getting into anything botanical and I got hooked fast! I couldn’t believe you could grow all the produce that you see in the grocery store in my own yard!

Stevia is doing very well in the garden this year!

Gardening has really kept me sane this year. It’s been my escape,  my solace.  I can go there, and toil for hours and when I come home, I feel strangely satisfied, even though my back hurts and my legs ache. It’s one of the only activities where the work you put in is hugely rewarded in the end!

The best part is bringing home pounds and pounds of fresh, organic produce. Everyone benefits. My family, friends, and neighbors have been enjoying the bags of veggies I am always loaded down with. There is no way I can eat all of it.

So I’ll be sharing my garden with you too! I’ve been cooking up a storm over here at JSN headquarters, and there are lots of interested ingredients, techniques, and recipes that I’ve come across or have created to continue to cook and eat without sugar.

I can’t wait to show you!


Lots of things being rearranged over here at JSN headquarters. Because of the shift, I’ve had to conjure up a new email. You can now reach me here:

I’ll update it in the contact info as well.

Sugar-Free Kettle Corn

Kettle corn is super addictive! Salty and sweet with plenty of crunch to go along with it. Once a bag is open, the only motivation to stop is when your hand is only scooping up the crumbs!

Kettle corn is not at all hard to make at home. The most difficult part is not burning the sugar.

Since there won’t be any sugar used here, making kettle corn just got a whole lot easier!

With very few ingredients, make sure you use the best! Using ghee will give a really nice slight buttery flavor that plays really well with the sweet and the salty. I also use organic popcorn and a really good sea salt.

The proportions I saw in other recipes just didn’t give enough yield, so I doubled them! Kettle corn goes fast!

Sugar-Free Kettle Corn
1/2 cup ghee
1 cup popcorn kernels
1/2 cup USB
sea salt to taste

In a large pan, melt ghee and add two popcorn kernels. Ghee will be hot once both kernels are popped. Working quickly, add the rest of the kernels and sprinkle over the USB. Put the lid on and move the pan back and forth to get everything mixed together. Once popping begins to slow, remove pan from the heat. When popping stops, transfer popcorn to a big bowl, add salt to taste and toss. Let popcorn cool for at least 5 minutes so that the coating will form. Serve and enjoy!