GOOP + Friday's Fixin's

Yesterday was an extraordinary, Silver Lined day because the Brookside Buzz received a beautiful shout out from Julia Leach on Gwyneth Paltrow’s (fabulous) blog GOOP.

I must say that I am honored and humbled by the response.  I’m also super excited and would like to take this opportunity to welcome new readers and to thank you ALL for reading Brookside Buzz!

To give you a little background, this blog started on November 2nd, 2010, shortly after I was diagnosed with breast cancer (I call it FBC – as in F-bomb Breast Cancer). I started writing it as what my friend describes a “public service announcement” on my progress through breast cancer treatment.

From the get-go, I was determined that FBC would not become the epicenter of my life.  I simply refused to give it that much power. I decided that instead (just for the time being!) it would be one part of my life. Only one.  Thus, the “Booby Report” pertains to all things related to FBC. The other topics refer to interests and passions in my life.

Treatment for me included a double mastectomy & reconstruction, followed by chemotherapy and radiation.  It was a long, F-bomb haul.  I was essentially allergic to chemo and had every possible reaction.  However, throughout all of it (even laying on the floor of my bathroom, bald and drooling), I was able to find Silver Linings.  Not in a Pollyanna sort of way. Really. I just looked for the good (sometimes it was only a shred) in every single situation. No matter how awful the situation.

If you’re so inclined, you can read the entire story from the beginning by clicking on “Brookside Buzz From the Beginning.”

Now on to today’s business. Every Friday, I share “Friday’s Fixin’s.”  These are easy peasy recipes (the only kind I will make!) that I prepare for our family and friends. I am 85% vegan. I eat fish and a little goat cheese…and truth be told, once a year, I have a double-double, animal style from In-N-Out Burger. What can I say?  I grew up in Indiana.  So, for the most part, the recipes tend to be pretty clean and healthy. Well, most of the time….

Today, I’m posting a breakfast quinoa recipe that a friend sent to me.  Oh my goodness is it good.  I’m so excited about it and hope that you enjoy it as much as I do!

Breakfast Quinoa with Walnuts


  • 1 cup quinoa (all red or a mix of red, white or black)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Accompaniments: broken or chopped walnuts, pure maple syrup or honey, almond milk and flaky sea salt (e.g., Maldon)


  • Wash quinoa in several changes of water in a bowl, rubbing grains and letting them settle before pouring off water. (If quinoa dos not settle, drain in a large fine-mesh sieve after each rinse until the water is clear.)
  • Combine quinoa, water, cinnamon sticks and salt in a heavy medium saucepan and bring to a boil, covered.
  • Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender.  This takes about 20 minutes
  • Remove pan from heat and let stand, covered, 5 minutes.  Fluff with a fork and keep covered to keep warm.
  • Remove cinnamon sticks.
  • Divide quinoa among bowls and top with walnuts, maple syrup or honey, milk and sea salt.
  • ENJOY!

There are oodles of health benefits to this breakfast:

  • Quinoa is a protein powerhouse.
  • Quinoa has a higher protein content than wheat, barley or other major grains. One cup of quinoa has 9 grams, which trumps the protein-rich egg (6 grams).
  • Quinoa’s vitamin B content can help keep the mind sharp, maintain brain volume and stabilize mood.
  • Quinoa is a great source of plant-derived calcium.
  • Quinoa is a satisfying, low-cholesterol source of complex carbohydrates. Rich in fiber, it’s digested slowly and has a low glycemic index, helping you steer clear of the blood-sugar roller coaster.
  • Walnuts are one of the best plant sources of protein. They are rich in fiber, B vitamins, magnesium, and antioxidants such as Vitamin E.
  • Cinnamon may actually help people with Type 2 diabetes control blood sugar levels, and may significantly lower LDL “bad” cholesterol, total cholesterol and triglycerides (fatty acids in the blood).
  • Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Cinnamon also has fabulous anti-nausea benefits (which I definitely need – still, thanks to Tamoxifen!!).

All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast.

– John Gunther




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  1. miriam says

    i also did find you thru goop and i love your f-ing attitude. thanks for a little bit of head straightening for me today!

  2. Lori says

    I found your blog from the GOOP newsletter and I too am working through breast cancer. I try to have a positive outlook and I love your Silver Linings! They are the BEST!Oh, and I have already started to call my husband a HOTY because he has no medical background but has had to help me with more (gross) things than any man usually would or could handle.

  3. says

    I did find you via Goop and I think you are the F-bomb greatest. I strolled through your blog yesterday and instantly bookmarked you.

    I love a good silver lining.

    Happy day!

  4. Katie H. says

    I found your blog through the GOOP newsletter yesterday. I've had a chance to read a bit "from the beginning". I just wanted to say thank you. Your outlook (and SL's) are really refreshing. I am not struggling with breast cancer, but am struggling with infertility. Your message about finding SL's, as well as other inspirational thoughts, can apply to any life struggle. Your words were just the positive boost I was needing!