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And so is Spring!
Spring foods I love: asparagus, local strawberries, lamb.
Of course, the weather’s improving, sun is out most of the time, wind’s are increasing-thank goodness for my pixie cut!
Food wise-for St. Pat’s day, we‘re not Irish, but my husband loves corned beef. As I’ve said before-even though the markets are rife with cheap packages, pay the extra and go for the better cuts!
They‘re leaner, less stringy and taste better. Try cooking this hardy traditional boiled dinner in a different way.
Instead of watching the water line for hours-put your root veggies into the crockpot with the meat, use a bottle of beer in lieu of the water and let it go all day. You’ll be glad you did.
If you love the boiled cabbage-add it (sliced in quarters) during the last 30-45 minutes of cooking. Otherwise-try serving the cabbage as a slaw. A little crunch added to this meal is a nice touch.
Serve with either toasted Irish Soda bread or bakery rye and the meal’s complete.
Next week, let’s talk about how to roast the lamb with some different herbs and spices!
Happy March everyone!
As I have several articles to do between today and Tuesday and several interviews-I’m making this week’s column pretty short.
One of us here on fab40 asked me to share my recipe for my noodle pudding. It’s full of protein and one of my family’s favorite sides:
Pre-heat oven to 350 and spray a 10×13 pyrex cake pan with Pam
1 12 oz package of wide noodles
1/2-1 C diced dried fruits (I like to use a mix that Sprouts puts together with apples, pears, apricots, peaches and raisins-use that or just raisins, if you prefer)
On the above-bring a pot of water to a boil, add 1 tbsp of salt and stir it in, cook according to the pasta direction. Drain. Put back into the cooking pot.
1 apple, grated
While noodles are boiling, in a blender, puree:
1 lb tofu, drain it for a few minutes-I use firm
4 large eggs
1/2-1 C Splenda-you can use regular sugar if you prefer
1 tbsp pure vanilla
2 tbsp. margarine
1 tsp. cinnamon
Soy or almond milk-I’ll explain the amount in a moment
On the above-puree everything except the “milk“, then add enough of it to give you 5 C. How much you’ll need will depend on the size of the eggs.
Put the grated apple into the pot with the noodles and dried fruit (now plumped). Add the tofu mixture and combine well. Carefully pour the entire mix into the prepared pan.
EXTRA: I now like to top it with either some graham cracker or panko crumbs-but it will be great with or without them.
Cover with foil and bake on the middle rack about 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes or until top is nice and brown.
Serve hot or room temperature. Now my husband and son only like this hot, but the rest of us will eat it cold for breakfast!
Ever feel as if you’ve done it all-cookingwise? That’s how I’m feeling today.
Not very creative, not feeling like creating something new, healthy and delicious.
I’m just not feeling it. Not a lick.
Maybe it’s the rest of what’s going on here in Nadel-land. Could be, but whatever the facts are, I’m just not thinking to myself, “oohh, it’s time to get into my kitchen and cook“.
Thankfully, we bought almost 10 pounds of beef ribs that I rubbed with some Montreal steak seasoning yesterday morning. We also took advantage of a sale on some first of the season locally grown asparagus. I’m going to bundle them up with some EVOO, minced garlic and sea salt and let my husband grill them at the end of his time putting those ribs on the BBQ. It’s almost noon here, so I’ve got a while before I need to pre-bake the darned things.
Our son and daughter-in-law are coming over, so the asparagus is a favorite of all of ours and will be a nice side dish.
The kids also love noodle pudding, so after I talk myself into doing 3 miles on the treadmill, I’ll put one together and that will round out the meal.
Seeing as Sam’s in nursing school and very busy and our son is on day 11 of straight work, I don’t think they’ll mind my offer of taking home a good sized chunk of it to enjoy during the week.
Outside of my malaise, I’m getting ready to announce something pretty exciting on the flip side, so stay tuned!
Happy Eating and welcome to March!
Hard to believe, but I’ve been to AZ and back-cooking all the way. Yes, you read that right-I cooked while on vacation.
Our daughter called and had my husband drop me off at her office so I could help her do the produce shopping at her local Sprouts-you know the place I call my “home away from home.”
As soon as I walked into the house, I kissed and hugged my grandsons to pieces, said hello and hugged our son and son-in-law and our daughter put me to work making my roasted butternut and pear puree. Seems this allowable veggie/fruit combination is on her list of approved dishes per her counselor/doctor at the weightloss medical clinic she’s attending.
I’m sure I’ve put up the recipe, but I’ll put it below again, I know from experience that dental surgery is less painful than looking for a prior recipe around here!
BTW, our daughter has lost 30 pounds now and is looking good and has stopped using her apnea machine. May this all continue.
DH and I helped on party day by picking up the cakes, twine for the pinata, tape to hold down the tables and we helped in both the set up and clean up. A very fun day was had by all.
Our daughter took a page from the “mom’s book of easy entertaining” and served pulled pork and salad for the family/friend dinner of 14 on Friday. I made the salad, dressing were bought and let’s face it-really, is anything easier than pulled pork? Get a shoulder on sale, stick in a crockpot and pour a bottle of BBQ sauce on and let it be. Shred and serve. Put on good buns. Or just serve over the salad-if you‘re on a low-carb diet.
After the party, everyone-including the overstimulated birthday boys, were exhausted Saturday night, so we invaded a local SmashBurger.
Sunday, we grilled steaks, baked potatoes and the leftover salad and veggie tray from the party.
By Monday morning, we had one last breakfast at the local Good Egg (which has a great fit/fabulous section) with our daughter and grandkids-our son-in-law had to go to work. Adam, Steve and I were back on the road for a very weird weather day back to Orange County. We had: high winds and 80 degrees, cold winds, both sprinkles and downpours and of course the triple threat: winds, cold and downpour-all at once. Of course that happened when we got to the outlet mall and were walking.
We came home to a very angry Pepper-whom was not happy about having 4 of us push the notion of getting back into his cage. He was happy to get home though and as usual for him, he’s glued to my body.
Now for the Roasted Butternut and Pear Puree
1 small butternut squash
2 small red pears
2 tbsps each-oleo and honey
1-1/2 tsp cinnamon and ginger (ginger is opt, but I love the added heat)
S & P
Pre-heat over 400.
Pierce and microwave squash for 5-7 minutes. This will make it easier to cut in half and seed. Line a large cookie sheet w/ foil. Cut side up, place squash on there along with split and cored pears. Spray with Pam and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 40-60 minutes or until soft (how long will depend on the size of the squash, pears and how your oven is gauged).
In a blender-put in the oleo/honey/spices. Add the pears first (a tad more moisture in them that the squash)and puree. Then is small amounts, add and puree the squash. Re-heat if necessary and serve.
Since I’ll be leaving town in a few days to help celebrate our grandsons collective birthdays-I thought I’d open this forum/blog up to talking about what foods make you think about Valentine’s Day?
I shared what I will probably be doing this year to celebrate with my husband, but do you have a specific dish, color theme or recipe that makes or even breaks your thoughts on the day?
At acupuncture today, my therapist, who just received her degree in nutrition and has already begun work on her Master’s in the subject laughed and said: I’m so busy with my studies, my internship and my practice, my husband will have to provide our Valentine’s Day!
Of course she did share some ideas of what makes a “heart-healthy” enjoyment! Negin Rostam suggested using the ever-favorite “everything in moderation” meal. Nothing wrong with serving filet mignon (it is actually one of the leanest pieces of red meat)and even indulging further by wrapping it in a slice of bacon-just make sure you‘re recognizing the fat content and cut back on other possible “fat” indulgences.
Love to share chocolate dipped strawberries? Rostam suggests melting the very dark chocolate version and NOT adding high fat cream. “After all,dark chocolate is filled with anti-oxidants and flavinoids that help our hearts.”
Vegetables? Even Dr. Oz loves promoting lots of delicious and colorful items. Try grilling or roasting red bell peppers with some purple onions for a different and tasty side dish.
Are you a lover of carbs (ok, who here is actually shaking their head no, cuz I for one will not be believing you)? Again, try some unusual versions! Ever try purple potatoes? Red potatoes with their skins on and either boiled and dressed with some chopped dill or rosemary and garlic? Even roasting either of these two versions are a fun and interesting change of pace.
Maybe you‘re more of a pasta person? Try a quinoa, spelt or even brown rice version. Serve with a nice red sauce.
You could ditch the red meat on the above idea and add some romance inducing oysters or clams to the sauce as well.
Now, until my return-share some new and interesting dishes for all areas of our upcoming holiday-even fun ones for those who are including our kids and grandkids in the day!
Hard to believe, but in just a couple of weeks, it will be Valentine’s Day!
What are you all planning? A “theme” meal with everything in shades of red/pink? A “heart” healthy meal? Perhaps you‘re thinking ultra romantic and using a human plate? (okay, I may have gone a tad far on that one!)
If you’ve got kids at home, do you recommend them leaving for the evening? Decide to have a party? Maybe you pull out the stops and dress provocatively (maybe a sheer apron in red hearts over nothing?), make a romantic meal and rent a Valentine’s movie?
So many options-who knows, I’m all about the cooking/baking and homespun fun, but perhaps you make reservations at a special restaurant?
Well, unfortunately for us, now that dh has gone back to the “sales floor“, he’ll be working until 9:30 at night. Yes, because we all know that on Valentine’s Eve everyone’s thinking-hmmm, let’s go by a new piece of furniture.
I’m not bitter, really. Glad he has the position. Luckily, my love doesn’t have to be at work until 12:30, so I’m planning a bit of an upside down celebration this year.
Brunch. So what if it’s Tuesday. I’ve decided on:
Heart-healthy 9-grain waffles with fresh strawberries and maybe I’ll fire up the grill and crisp up some turkey bacon.
I’ve decided to drizzle some melted dark chocolate over the entire plate-yes, even the bacon. Depending on my mood, I might just chop up the bacon and stir it into the waffle batter!
Did someone say coffee? Found some Godiva Double Chocolate (I believe that’s the flavor anyway) beans.
I’ll send him off with his lunch box filled with some romantic meals-he will be there for lunch and dinner after all.
Since we will have only returned from AZ the day before, I’ll have to probably go to the market while he’s on the treadmill, but I’m thinking a package of his favorite sashimi pack, with salmon and ahi and some spinach salad with cranberries and a weight-watcher dessert that we’ve got out in the pantry (they sent them to me to try and I’m allergic to the entire array!). Dinner will probably be a sub of some sort with a personal crudite tray.
When he gets home, I’ll have something special to add-heart healthy and calorie free.