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February 27, 2012


Gael in Vermont

A Separation won best foreign film so I hope it will be available on the big screen in my area. My neighborhood friends walked my "red carpet" into my home last night and each brought a dish reminiscent of one of the nominated films. We had such a great time! I made Hearty Shepherd's Pie with mushrooms and lentils...not that Margaret Thatcher ate shepherd's pie...but we ate plant-strong! Your sister's soup sounds like a must-make! Thanks for sharing, Deb!

Cherie Perkins

I love it that our favorite doc's name is becoming a verb. This soup is just like one I make but it's a chowder - instead of the peanut butter try a can of creamed corn and instead of the beans try baked tofu.


I had seen A Separation a few weeks ago and thought it very powerful..I actually would like to see the other nominees for foreign film but will have to wait awhile for those, I'm afraid.Going to try your sister's soup this week!Lani

Marilou Garon

I too, switched to Teecino! I actually brew it in my stovetop Italien espresso maker. I have to really be careful not to use too much, however, because it brews to a very dark, black espresso! It tastes really good and this, from a "real" coffee fanatic! It's a tad sweet, however, so I find it better to drink it black or with non-sweetened milk. My first try was with sweetened Silk soymilk and that was just too "desserty".

I'll definitely see Separation, but I also urge everyone to also go see Mr. Lhazar. It was the foreign film in nomination from Canada, and filmed in my hometown of Montreal. I'm of course sad we didn't bring home the Oscar... Maybe this soup will give me a bit of comfort! :)


You must also try to see the wonderful Canadian French language film in the same category, "Monsieur Lahzar". It's excellent!

Karen Marie

@Cherie, thanks for the alternative to PB. I'm not sure how PB will taste in a soup, so would prefer to use corn as you suggested. Otherwise, sounds delicious!

Sue in Denver

Hi Healthy Librarian!!
This past weekend, I had the honor of attending a program hosted by my heath guru, Dr Esselstyn, and by the author of the fantastic China Study, Dr. Colin Campbell, at Kripalu in Stockbridge, MA. I was not disappointed! I wanted to let you know that Ann Crile Esselstyn, during her presentaton on Sunday morning, gave a shout out to your blog! The only "downer" of the whole weekend was finding out that caffeine is now on Dr. Esselstyn's list of foods that will damage the endothelial lining. It was not mentioned in Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, but I had recently seen it on his website and was hoping that it was a typo! :-) Oh well! I've been thinking about giving it up anyway...From Esselstyn's mouth to my ears! Dr. Esselstyn and Dr. Campbell were so gracious--they could not get a moment to themselves--everyone wanted to talk to them--and they both were so kind and accomodating! Anyway, wanted to let you know about your "mention"--and to thank you again for your wonderful blog! Oh--by the way, Dr. Esselstyn did mention that he does not believe in "smoothies"--even the all-vegetable ones. He thinks it's important to CHEW the greens. Since I eat whole greens in addition to my smoothie, I think I will adjust by decreasing the amount of smoothie and increasing the amount of greens that have not been Vita-Mixed, thereby covering all my bases!

The Healthy Librarian

@Gael: The Separation will come to VT for sure! Love hearing about your Oscar party & your Shepherd's pie ala Iron Lady. Did you really find a red carpet?

@Cherie: Thanks for the tip about using creamed corn! Never would have thought of that sub for PB. Great idea for baked tofu, too. Care to share your soup recipe? You sound like such an adventurous & creative cook. And thanks for telling us all about teeccino. Yum!

@Lani: glad to hear you saw Separation & also loved it--although not surprised--we have similar film tastes, I think. I also want to see all the nominees. The foreign nominees are always worthwhile films & so different than what Hollywood produces. Maybe I'll just add them now to my Netflix queue & wait.

@Anne & Marilou: Thanks for the recommendation of Mr. Lhazar! I hadn't heard of it! I also got emails from other readers recommending it. I'm so glad you all don't mind when I blog about movies, too--and that many of you appreciate the same ones.

@Sue in Denver: Thanks so much for telling us about the Kripalu weekend! Sounds like it was fantastic. Thrilled that Ann gave HHLL a shout-out---and not at all surprised about Dr. E's mention of no smoothies. I understand where he's coming from--and that's fine. I'm still drinking my very veggie version of them--with no qualms whatsoever. I know how my body feels with them--and without them. Glad you got to meet Ann, Essy & Colin in person. They are all extraordinary, in my opinion!

Ellen (Gluten Free Diva)

This soup looks fantastic!!!!!! I can't wait to try it!


How does Better'N Peanut Butter compare to PB2?

Health Librarian

@Leslie: PB2 is the healthier choice--just defatted peanut flour with a touch of salt & sugar for some flavor. PB2 is half the calories of Better'n Peanut Butter, too--even though BTPB has 85% less fat than real peanut butter. BTPB 2 TBS serving has 55 calories of sweetener & added weird stuff in it, although it's 1/2 the total calories of the real thing.

BTPB: Better'N Butter--85% less fat--it's made with defatted peanut flour & some weird ingredients like tapioca syrup, grain syrup, vegetable glycerine & dehydrated cane juice--2 grams of fat, 2 gr sugar--but it's already mixed up. It's sweetish--I like it in chocolate hummus & to mix into soups that call for peanut butter. The creaminess of it gives a better taste when a recipe calls for peanut butter. But, if you're spreading peanut butter on an English muffin or on a cracker/sandwich--go for PB2--tastes fine, less junk in it, less calories.

PB2 Nutritional Info:

Nutrition facts:


PB2: Powdered Peanut Butter
Ingredients: Roasted peanuts, sugar and salt.
Serving size: 2 Tablespoons (12 grams)
Servings per container: 15
Amount per 2 Tablespoon serving (when mixed with water):
Calories: 45
Calories from fat: 13

Value and % Daily Value*

Total fat 1.5 g 3%
Saturated fat 0 g 0%
Trans fat < 0.01 g
Cholesterol < 0.01 mg 0%
Sodium 94 mg 4%
Total carbohydrate 5 g 2%
Dietary fiber 2 g 8%
Sugars 1 g
Protein 5 g
Vitamin A < 1%
Vitamin C 0%

Calcium <1%
Iron 0%

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

As the Lab Rat would say---that's way more than I wanted to know. Just tell me in 2 words!!


That was the perfect amount. I wanted the whole run-down. I am certainly not concise when I speak...:)

Pam Wright

This soup is fabulous! I think Dr. Esselstyn recommends that people increase greens and decrease grains/ starches if they want to lose weight, so I added green peppers and celery (onions + celery + peppers = the culinary "holy Trinity" in Cajun / Creole cooking), cut the rice to 1 cup. Used PB2.

"Kicked it up a notch" with chipotle chili pepper and smoked paprika. Yowzaa!


I did not change a thing (hard to believe, I know) when making this for my family.
Everyone really like it and used the "keeper" term often. My compliments to your sister

I may have told a small lie. I added lots of chopped cilantro on top of mine.

The Healthy Librarian

@Mike---a supreme compliment coming from you--a master chef--with a picky palate. Glad to hear it was a hit with your family! I'll pass your compliment on to my sister. Love the idea of adding cilantro.

@Pam--glad to hear you also liked it--and great idea to add that holy Trinity. Good to hear that the PB2 worked just fine--much better health choice than the real thing--or Better'n Peanut Butter.

Mary Martin

Oh my I love love LOVED this recipe. It was easy and I don't have the defatted PB yet but will get there when I find it but did have to MAKE myself stop eating it. I am forwarding it on to my family and friends Thank you again for all the time effort and love you put into your work. I really appreciate it!

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