Pointe Stars

Brighten Up Your Culinary Routine with These Original Recipes from San Francisco Ballet's Natasha Sheehan

Natasha Sheehan posing with her Rainbow Superfood Energy Balls. Photo Courtesy Natasha Sheehan.

If you follow San Francisco Ballet corps dancer Natasha Sheehan on Instagram, you've definitely seen envy-worthy photos of gorgeously arranged food. But Sheehan is more than a skilled photographer; she also creates many of the recipes that she cooks. "I get a lot of inspiration from Pinterest and Instagram, but the majority of the time I just experiment and see what's good. It takes a lot of trial and error," she says. Sheehan is a self-described "pegan," which combines aspects of both vegan and paleo diets to emphasize eating whole, unprocessed food. The San Francisco-native started experimenting with her diet when her dance training became more intense. "I was looking for foods that had higher nutritional value for energy and building stamina," says Sheehan. "Most importantly, I wanted foods that delighted my taste buds and made me feel and dance my best." As for her love of photography, Sheehan says that "kind of came out of nowhere. I've always been a perfectionist, even before I started ballet, and like to treat each meal as a celebration to truly enjoy by making it look aesthetically appealing."

Sheehan shared three of her recipes with us below: Rainbow Superfood Energy Balls, Paleo Banana Zucchini Bread and Oodles of (Veggie) Noodles Salad. Want even more colorful delicacies? Check out Sheehan's blog for additional recipes and tips.


Rainbow Superfood Energy Balls. Photo Courtesy Natasha Sheehan.


Rainbow Superfood Energy Balls

"These are great for a snack or a pick me up," says Sheehan. "Sometimes I like to have them as dessert or right before a rehearsal if I need a little boost."

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup reduced fat coconut unsweetened fine shredded (plus a little extra for rolling)
  • 1/4 cup dried apricots
  • 1/4 cup figs
  • 1/4 cup dates (Sheehan recommends deglet noor dates)
  • 1 tbs chia seeds
  • 1/2 tbs hemp seeds
  • Ashwaghanda (Optional. An herb used in Ayurvedic healing to help strengthen the immune system. Available at most health food stores and drug stores.)
  • Pumpkin spice
  • Lemon zest
  • Vanilla extract
  • Freeze-dried strawberries or raspberries
  • Turmeric powder
  • Matcha green tea powder
  • Blue Majik powder/capsules (Derived from spirulina, Blue Majik is an algae extract full of vitamins, enzymes and minerals. It's available at most health food stores and online.)
Instructions
  1. In a food processor, blend the almonds and walnuts together. Pulse a few times in the very beginning.
  2. Add the dried fruit and coconut. Blend again.
  3. Add the chai seeds, hemp seeds, ashwaghanda (optional), pumpkin spice, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Blend for about 10 seconds.
  4. On a parchment-paper lined baking tray, roll mixture into ping-pong sized balls.
  5. Roll the energy balls in the bowls of rainbow superfood powders (crushed freeze-dried strawberries or raspberries for red; turmeric for yellow; matcha powder for green; blue Majik for blue).
  6. Place the tray with the energy balls in the freezer for about 10 minutes.
  7. The energy balls can be enjoyed immediately or stored in the fridge for a couple of weeks.


Paleo Banana Zucchini Bread. Photo Courtesy Natasha Sheehan.

Paleo Banana Zucchini Bread

"This is perfect for breakfast or brunch on a day off," says Sheehan.

Ingredients

  • 3 bananas
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup almond butter (Sheehan recommends Jem Organics Cinnamon Red Maca Sprouted Almond Butter. "I find sprouted is better for digestion," says Sheehan.)
  • 1 grated zucchini
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup paleo baking flour (Try almond flour, arrowroot starch, organic coconut flour or tapioca flour as alternatives. Sheehan recommends Bob's Red Mill Paleo Flour).
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp Organic Gemini's Tigernut Prebiotic Smoothie Mix (Optional)
  • Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 lemon zest
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Cinnammon
  • Nutmeg
  • Cardamom
  • 1 tsp Ashwagandha (Optional. An herb used in Ayurvedic healing to help strengthen the immune system. Available at most health food stores and drug stores.)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350℉.
  2. Combine the bananas, eggs, nut butter, grated zucchini and coconut oil in a mixing bowl and mix well.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.
  4. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper.
  5. Pour in batter and spread evenly.
  6. Place in preheated oven and bake for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  7. Remove from oven and flip your bread onto a cooling rack.
  8. Slice, serve and go bananas!


Oodles of (Veggie) Noodles Salad. Photo Courtesy Natasha Sheehan.

Oodles of (Veggie) Noodles Salad

For Sheehan, this colorful salad is "great for lunch" on warm weather days.

Ingredients
  • 2 handfuls of romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 watermelon radish
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1/2 golden beet
  • 1/2 English cucumber
  • 1/2 fennel bulb
  • Small handful of walnuts
  • A couple of mint leaves
  • 1-2 tablespoons of the dressing of your choice
Instructions
  1. Place the romaine lettuce in a salad bowl
  2. Spiralize all of the veggies (If you don't have a Spiralizer, Sheehan recommends grating or finely chopping the vegetables).
  3. Roast walnuts in oven or toaster oven at 350℉ for 2-3 minutes
  4. Add walnuts, mint veggie noodles and dressing to salad bowl
  5. Toss together
  6. Serve and enjoy!
popular
Artists of Pennsylvania Ballet rehearsing for "The Sleeping Beauty" for the 2017/18 season. Photo by Arian Molina Soca, Courtesy Pennsylvania Ballet.

Today the Pennsylvania Ballet's board of trustees announced the appointment of Shelly Power as its new executive director. Having been involved in the five-month international search, company artistic director Angel Corella said in a statement released by PAB that he's "certain Shelly is the best candidate to lead the administrative team that supports the artistic vision of the company." Power's official transition will begin in December. This news comes at the end of a few years of turmoil and turnover at PAB, including the departure of former executive director David Gray in June.

Keep reading... Show less
Tiler Peck with Andrew Veyette in "Allegro Brillante." Photo by Paul Kolnik, Courtesy New York City Ballet.

"I was particularly excited when I saw my name on casting for Allegro Brillante in 2009," remembers principal dancer Tiler Peck. "Balanchine had said Allegro was, 'everything I know about classical ballet in 13 minutes,' and of course that terrified me." To calm her fear, Peck followed her regular process for debuts: begin by going back to the original performers to get an idea of the quality and feeling of the ballet and ballerina. "It is never to imitate, but rather to surround myself with as much knowledge from the past as I can so that I can find my own way," says Peck.

Keep reading... Show less
popular
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's 'The Nutcracker.' Photo by Rich Sofranko

Catching a performance of The Nutcracker has long been a holiday tradition for many families. And now, more and more companies are adding sensory-friendly elements to specific shows in an effort to make the classic ballet inclusive to children and adults with special needs.

While the accommodations vary depending on the company, many are presenting shorter versions of the ballet with more relaxed theater rules. Additionally, lower sound and stage light levels during the performance, as well as trained staff on hand, make The Nutcracker more accessible for those on the autism spectrum and others with special needs.

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's performance will take place on Tuesday, December 26th, and they are one of the pioneer companies in presenting sensory-friendly performances of The Nutcracker (their first production was in 2013). PBT also offers sensory-friendly versions of Jorden Morris' Peter Pan and Lew Christensen's Beauty and the Beast throughout the year.

See our list of sensory-friendly performances, and check out each site for all of the details regarding their offerings.

Keep reading... Show less
Your Best Body
Pilates hundred intermediate set-up, modeled by Jordan Miller. Photo by Emily Giacalone.

The Pilates hundred is a popular exercise used by many dancers for conditioning and warming up, but it's also one of the most misunderstood. Pumping your arms for 100 counts sounds simple enough, but it requires coordinated breathwork, a leg position that suits your abilities and proper alignment. Marimba Gold-Watts, who works with New York City Ballet dancers at her Pilates studio, Articulating Body, breaks down this surprisingly hard exercise. When done correctly, the benefits are threefold: "If you're doing it before class," she says, "the hundred is a great way to get your blood flowing and work on breath control and abdominal support all at once."

To Start

Lie on your back with knees bent and feet on the floor. Nod your chin toward the front of your throat, and reach your fingertips long.

Keep reading... Show less
Pointe Stars

At just 16 years old, the Bolshoi Ballet's Maria Alexandrova already had the makings of a great artist. In this variation from Coppélia, she portrays the carefree Swanilda with blithe, youthful ease.

When she bounds on stage in her perky pink tutu, you immediately notice her legs–they just go on forever. In the first sequence of steps she keeps her jetés and développés low, but then the phrase repeats and she lets her gorgeous extensions fly. She sails through Italian fouettés and whirls around in piqués en manège that get faster and faster. While she nails all the virtuosic movement, Alexandrova also pays beautiful attention to detail throughout the variation. Even the simplest steps become something exciting, like her precise pas de bourrées beginning at 1:03 that sing with musicality.

Swanilda has been one of Alexandrova's signature roles throughout her career. For a fun side by side, watch her perform the same variation almost 20 years later in this video. Although Alexandrova formally retired from the Bolshoi in February, she still performs frequently in Moscow and internationally as a guest artist. Happy #ThrowbackThursday!


Pointe Stars
Ingrid Silva and her dog, Frida Kahlo. Photo by Nathan Sayers for Pointe.

You're probably already following your favorite dancers on Instagram, but did you know that you can follow many of their dogs, too? We rounded up some of our favorite dog-centered accounts and hashtags to keep you pawsitively entertained (sorry, we can't help ourselves).

Cora and Maya (American Ballet Theatre's Sarah Lane and Luis Ribagorda)

Sarah Lane and Luis Ribagorda's pups Cora and Maya update their profile pretty frequently. Often accompanying Lane to the ABT studios, they can also be seen using tutus or piles of pink tights as dog beds.

Keep reading... Show less
Pointe Stars
Vladislav Lantritov and Ekaterina Krysanova in "Taming of the Shrew." Photo by Alice Blangero, Courtesy Bolshoi Ballet.

If you haven't checked your local movie listings yet for this weekend, hop to it. The Bolshoi Ballet in Cinema series and Fathom Events is broadcasting a performance of Jean-Christophe Maillot's The Taming of the Shrew to theaters nationwide on Sunday, November 19. (To see if it's playing near you and to purchase tickets, click here.) While the rest of the Bolshoi's cinema season features 19th- and 20th-century classics, The Taming of the Shrew gives audiences a chance to see the revered Moscow company in a thoroughly modern, 21st-century take on Shakespeare's famous play.

Aside from a limited run in New York City this July, American audiences have had little exposure to Maillot's 2014 production. To learn more, check out these two exclusive, behind-the-scenes webisodes below. Principal dancer Ekaterina Krysanova, who stars as the hotheaded Katharina, gives an intimate play-by-play of two major scenes in Act I. The first is her fiery rejection of three potential suitors (who all would prefer to marry Katharina's younger sister Bianca).

The second scene breaks down Katharina's first encounter with Petruchio (danced by the larger-than-life Vladislav Lantritov), the only man who seems to be able to challenge her. Here, too, we see the shrew's heart start to soften. (Don't miss her time-stopping attitude turn at 4:27.)

The Bolshoi Ballet in Cinema Series continues through June; for more details on upcoming screenings, click here.

Sponsored

Videos

Sponsored

mailbox

Get Pointe Magazine in your inbox

Sponsored

Win It!