Welcome to this week's 'What I Eat!'
Let's talk about smoothies. Everyone loves them these days. Ideally, they contain whole fruits and vegetables, and good sources of protein and fat (flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp hearts, pea protein powder, etc.). It also ideal to make sure they aren't cold, which often surprises my patients. Our stomachs work hard to maintain the proper environment for digestion, including temperature. When we shock our stomach with cold beverages and food, we aren't doing ourselves any favours. In the summer, a smoothie can be a great way to get good nutrition into our stomach without too much work.
Now, let's talk about soup. I had a patient this week who helped me realize that soups are the PERFECT winter replacement for smoothies. Why do we even need to replace smoothies? Digesting raw food takes energy, and in the winter we need that energy to stay warm. Additionally, smoothies tend to be filled with fruits and vegetables that aren't in season. Our bodies are happiest eating warm, seasonal vegetables in the winter = soup!!! The good news is, soup is easy. You can make a huge batch, freeze some, and carry what you need for the day in a thermos.
*sorry that ALL of this week's pictures are slightly blurry, I'm not sure what's happening with my camera, but I'll sort it out.
Breakfast - Beets and Apples
I combined a diced apple, diced steamed beets (from last week's post), raw sunflower seeds, and lime juice.
Lunch - Soup!
Carrot Soup (pictured above)
Ingredients (I wasn't expecting to make this soup, so I worked with the basic ingredients I had in my fridge. This soup would have been even more delicious with coconut milk, curry, etc.)
-four cups of water
-6 carrots, cut into chunks
-one onion. minced
-two tbsp. minced ginger (watch out, this soup gets hot fast!)
-dry seasoning of your choice (as a garnish and extra flavour)
-brown the onion and ginger in the bottom of a sauce pan with a small abount of oil until soft
-add water and carrots, bring to a boil, cook until carrots soft
-use an immersion blender to puree the soup
-season as desired
-one package of frozen, chopped spinach
-one can of white kidney beans, rinsed
-one onion, chopped
-three bulbs of garlic, minced
-put all ingredients into a stock pot, except for beans. Bring to a boil, and then simmer for at least half an hour. Add beans right before serving, just to warm them up.
Dinner - Pizza
I had a terrible cold and work ran late so, in order to get food into my stomach fast, I picked up a frozen pizza at Independent (also available at Sobey's). I topped it with chopped tomato, a whole chopped onion from my CSA basket, about a half a head of minced garlic, and chopped olives. Baking this pizza rendered the garlic and onion just cooked enough to be edible, while still being strongly medicinal (serious antimicrobial powers). I ate about 3/4 of the pizza.
A huge thank you to this week's guest chef, Tobel, who made me all sorts of wonderful food for my birthday! He's responsible for everything in this post except for lunch. Unfortunately, the photo of dinner DOES NOT do it justice, it was absolutely delicious.
Breakfast - Roasted Tomatoes with Chili & Herbs and Fried Mushrooms
-dried chili peppers, chopped
Halve tomatoes across their widths, and place cut side up in a baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil, add dried chillies, and fresh thyme. Mushrooms and tomatoes were both roasted in the same baking pan, the mushrooms were placed with their gills facing up and were brushed with oil. Bake in oven for at least 25 minutes.
Lunch - Vegetable Bowl
-raw sunflower seeds
-Daiya shredded mozzarella 'cheese' (which is starting to become available in practically every grocery store in North Bay!
Dinner - Turkey Burgers, Tangy Tomato Chutney, and Spiced Parsnip Bubble & Squeak
Tangy Tomato Chutney
Recipe here, with modifications below.
-1 tbsp olive oil
-1 onion, finely chopped
-1 crushed garlic clove
-1 tbsp sundried tomato paste
-400g can organic chopped tomatoes
Heat the olive oil in a pan and add the finely chopped onion. Cook for 5 mins until softened. Stir in the crushed garlic clove and cook for a further minute. Add the sundried tomato paste, the chopped tomatoes and a pinch of sugar. Gently cook for 30-35 mins, until rich and thick. Season to taste, then leave to cool before serving.
Turkey Burgers (served on O-Dough's buns)
Recipe here, with modifications listed below.
-2 tbsp grapeseed oil
-1 large onion, finely chopped
-2 garlic cloves, crushed
-450g/1lb ground turkey
-200g dried apricots, finely chopped
-1 large carrot, grated
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and gently fry the onion for 5 mins until soft. Add the garlic and cook for 1 min. Tip into a bowl and set aside to cool.
Add the rest of the ingredients to the cooled mixture and mix well with your hands. Season to taste and shape into 8 patties.
Heat the remaining oil in a large, non-stick frying pan and sear the burgers on each side until well coloured (3-4 mins). Once both sides are seared, reduce heat and continue to cook for 10-15 mins.
Spiced Parsnip Bubble & Squeak
-800g parsnips, chopped into chunks
-1 tsp turmeric
-1⁄2 Savoy cabbage or 300g Brussles sprouts, finely shredded
-large handful frozen pea
-juice 1⁄2 lemon
-1 tsp cumin
-1 tbsp garam masala
-1 bunch coriander, chopped
-1 red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
-2 coriander sprigs, to serve
Tip the parsnips into a pan of cold water with the turmeric and a little salt and boil for about 12 mins until they are on the brink of collapsing. While the parsnips are cooking, blanch the cabbage or sprouts in another pan of boiling water for 3 mins until tender, adding the peas for the final minute, then drain well.
Drain the parsnips well, then tip back into the pan and roughly mash with the lemon juice. Then beat in all the other ingredients, and season with salt. Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan about 28cm in diameter, and press the parsnip mixture into the pan. Cook until crisp underneath, then turn over with a fish slice. (Don’t worry if it breaks at this point, it will hold eventually.) Keep cooking until crisp on the other side, then slide onto a plate and flip back into the pan again. Keep on doing this until you have a crisp, puck-shaped cake. Serve on a plate or board, cut into wedges.
Dessert - Chocolate Chip Cookies
Tobel made these cookies (Pamela's Chocolate Chunk Cookie Mix) following the recipe on the package, except he didn't add the required egg. It never would have occurred to me to try this, and they turned out just fine! I'm excited to be able to use a baking mix like this without the eggs!
Now is a fantastic time to buy fresh, local, incredibly cheap produce. Tomatoes, potatoes, squash, beets, cranberries, etc..... my preparations for winter continue in this post.
Breakfast - Oatmeal with Pears
Only Oats Pure Whole Grain Rolled Oats (available at The Bulk Barn) with cinnamon and an organic pear.
Lunch - Chicken Soup
I threw this soup together for someone with a cold with what I had available in the fridge.
-diced chicken (from an earlier roasted chicken, purchased from a local farm)
-finely chopped cooking onion
-five bay leaves (removed before serving)
-one tsp. cumin powder
I brought the ingredients to a boil, and then I left them to simmer for about an hour. The soup got to sit in the fridge for a few hours, and then I re-warmed it and served it. Soup almost always tastes better if it gets to sit for a few hours.
Dinner - Roast with Veggies
This was a roast purchased from Sobey's, one of their new line of meat that comes with certification that the farm is humane. I still haven't checked out the legitimacy of this certification, but I will! As I've said before, I definitely take it as a good sign that this meat is significantly more delicious than most meats from the grocery store. This roast was pan roasted with carrots, onions, and potatoes.
Beets are super cheap right now! I bought a 10 pound bag for $1.99. I put about half the bag in a stock pot on top of a steamer basket and steamed them for approximately an hour. I almost always forget about them and burn the bottom of the pan when the water evaporates..... it's like I never learn. It always turns out fine, they just have a slightly smokey flavour. I leave the beets to cool, slice the top and bottom off, and then peel them by pressing the skin off with my hands (see photo below). The, I pop whatever beets I don't immediately eat into the freezer.
This was the first time I made cranberry sauce, and I just couldn't believe how easy it was! I picked up two bags of fresh cranberries for $1.99 a piece, and then I followed the recipe on the back of the bag (though I only used 25% of the recommended sugar). I combined them with two cups of water and about 1/2 cup of brown sugar. I brought it to a boil, then reduced to a simmer for about 15 minutes, let it cool, and put it in a jar. It tastes really great, I'll never buy canned cranberry sauce again (as long as there are fresh cranberries available in the stores)!
I took a course in Toronto last weekend and, in this post, I'm going to put a focus on what I eat when I travel by car. I packed a cooler full of food, and I'm going to show what was in it! I used Find Me Gluten Free to find an excellent restaurant in Kensington Market for dinner on Saturday night. I was enjoying my food so much I forgot to take a picture, but I highly recommend the restaurant Kensington Cornerstone. My fish & chips and apple pie were yummy, and we ended up having a nice conversation with the owner!
Now, I'm not going to pretend that a trip isn't made harder by having to spend a night cooking before you leave. However, I noticed that a lot of the people I was taking my course with had to rush to restaurants on our lunch breaks, and came back complaining about the bad food they ate. I was able to enjoy my food and some time outdoors on my lunch break.
Last but not least, my choice of meals was dictated by what I had left in my fridge that I didn't want to go bad, in case you wonder what possessed to me to combine some of these foods!
Hummus with Cucumber and Celery Sticks
Celery from my Field Good Farms CSA Basket, and it was delicious! I don't eat hummus regularly, and I always mean to make my own, but I don't always get around to it.
(I guess I would call this a) Gluten-Free Cold Plate
-lettuce from my Field Good Farms CSA Basket
-corn Relish, recipe here
-organic Kalmata olives
-guacamole (avocado, pressed garlic, and lime juice mashed together)
-gluten-free pepperoni (I bought mine at the Sundridge Fall Fair, but it's generally getting a lot easier to find these kinds of products gluten-free)
-re-fried beans (organic ketchup, cumin, smoked paprika, fried onions, and warm pinto beans mashed together....it's true, they were never technically RE-fried)
Beef, Broccoli, and Edemame
The edemame came from my Field Good Farms CSA Basket, and I was blown away by how much better it tasted than any edemame I've eaten before. It was amazing! I topped this dish with a bit of Bragg's Liquid Aminos.
The beef came from Sobey's, which has brought in a whole new line of ethically and sustainably farmed meats. I haven't yet researched these meats to see how credible their claims are, but I can say that they taste considerably better than almost any other meats I've found on the grocery store shelves in North Bay. I'll be buying a chest freezer in the next few months, and then I'll be placing bulk meat orders from local farms. In the interim, I'm purchasing the most healthful and ethical meats I can find. Though I did eat meat more frequently in this post, I tend to eat meat (beef, chicken, etc.) once every week or two, and fish about once a week.
Baked Squash Dish
-baked butternut squash, scooped from the skin
-Daiya shredded Mozarella 'cheese'
-mixture of rice, lentils, and onions (recipe here)
What I Eat
I want to give you an idea of how to eat healthfully on a restricted diet, without a lot of work, by showing you how I eat! I eat strictly gluten-free. You'll find A LOT of veggies in this blog! I eat both fish and meat a few times a week (local and/or humane, whenever possible), and dairy when I'm visiting family and friends, or eating out. I hope you find this blog inspiring and interesting!