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Month: January 2012

meatless monday: white bean veggie burgers

As a vegetarian I’m always looking for new delicious meatless recipes. But even if you’re an omnivore, Meatless Mondays are a great excuse to improve your health, and help the environment by going veggie once a week. The campaign is supported by everyone from Oprah to our uncle Russell Simmons to Mario Batali, and now is jumping on the Meatless Monday train.

I found this recipe from Big Girls Small Kitchen and I can’t wait to try it. Homemade veggie burgers are always better than the store-bought ones, and this version provides an interesting twist on the classic black bean burger.


White Bean Burgers
Serves 3

about 1/4 cup olive oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
One 14-ounce can white beans, drained
1 egg
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon freshly ground Parmesan
juice of half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon thyme, broken up with your fingers
1 scallion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tablespoons masa harina (just use flour if you don’t have masa on hand)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup pesto
1 ripe tomato (use sundried or cherry tomatoes if you can’t find a good roma or heirloom)
3 slices whole grain bread

In a small pan, place 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Caramelize the onions by placing them on a heavy-bottomed, wide pan with olive oil and cooking over low heat for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook another 5 minutes over low heat. Remove from heat.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Combine half the beans, half the onion, the egg, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, lemon, thyme, scallion, and masa harina in a food processor. Season with generous pinches of salt and pepper. Pulse a few times, stopping to scrape down the sides with a spatula, until blended. In a small bowl, mash the rest of the beans with a fork or potato masher (you shouldn’t see any whole beans, but you don’t want to make a puree either) and combine with the rest of the mixture and the remaining caramelized onions.

Wet your hands slightly and form the mixture into 3 patties. If you have time, you can refrigerate the patties for 30 minutes or up to 12 hours.

Heat an oven-safe, heavy-bottomed pan–cast iron is great!–over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Add about 2 tablespoons of oil, enough to generously film the bottom of the pan. Place the patties in oil and cook over medium heat until just browned on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Carefully flip and brown the opposite side. Transfer to the oven and cook another 10-15 minutes, until very golden on both sides, and firm through.

Do you have a favorite veggie recipe? Share it in the comments below.

XOXO, Angela

homemade beauty: whiten your teeth with strawberries


homemade beauty

People spend big bucks on expensive teeth bleaching treatments, but you all know I’m a fan of natural beauty remedies whenever they’re an option. Here’s my personal favorite homemade teeth whitening recipe:

1 strawberry
1 tbsp. baking soda

Now you have a couple of options. You can cut a strawberry in half, rub the inside on your teeth and then brush with baking soda. I prefer to crush or puree the strawberry into a pulp and then mix in the baking soda to create a paste. You then cover your teeth with the paste and let it sit for about 5 minutes.

Why does this work? To be honest, I wasn’t even sure myself, so I did a little research and it turns out that strawberries have malic acid in them, which just so happens to be a natural stain remover.

I’m glad I did my homework because I also read that due to the high sugar content of strawberries, it’s important to brush your teeth with toothpaste when you are done with the treatment, AND because of the acid in the strawberries, you don’t want to do this treatment too often. I guess too much of a good thing, can be a bad thing if you know what I’m saying.

Got any other hot homemade beauty tricks? Share them in the comments below.


make your request!


Hey guys!

We hope you’re enjoying our new site! As we continue to share our interests with you on music, fashion and beauty, we’d love to hear what else you guys would like to see more of. Don’t be shy! Just leave your suggestions/requests in the comments section below and we’ll be sure to take them into consideration.

Thanks and can’t wait to hear what you all have to say!

Angela + Vanessa

diy lemon soak

Hey guys,

Many of you have been sending in requests for more at-home beauty remedies and today, I’d like to share one for a lemon soak. I do this every once in awhile when I’m in the mood to take a bath and unwind.  It’s really easy and I feel it tightens my skin and gives it a glow. It’s easy and the scent of fresh lemons is really invigorating.


Here’s all you need:
— 5 lemons cut in half
— Warm water


— Fill the tub with warm water.
— Squeeze the lemon juice from the lemons in to the tub.
— Throw the lemons into the tub.
— Relax and unwind.

I usually stay in for 15-20 minutes and soak it all in.

Give and try and let me know what you think!


win it! new year, new you, new kicks!

It’s a new year, which means a fresh start! Doesn’t 2012 feel full of promise? To get this year off on the right foot, we want to hear what the past year has meant to you and what you hope 2012 will bring.

We can’t wait to hear what you all have planned, and in exchange for sharing your goals with us, we’re giving away TWO FREE PAIRS of Pastry sneakers to two random lucky individuals.


How it works:

Follow us on Twitter. @SimmonsSisters

Like us on Facebook. Angela + Vanessa Simmons Facebook page

Tell us about one thing you accomplished this past year and what your New Year’s resolution for 2012 will be in the comments below.


Contest begins January 2, 2012 and ends Friday, January 6, 2012 at 3 PM PST. Winners will be selected at random and announced Tuesday, January 10, 2012.

Angela + Vanessa