Lately all of my favorite blogs have been focused on back-to-school with lunch options and healthy snacks. I don’t have children but am still welcome the reminder that it really is not that time consuming or expensive to plan ahead and keep lunches and snacking in check. By mid-summer I was becoming bored with meal-planning and lunches probably suffer the most since, at this point, I can throw together a dinner fairly quickly with staples on hand. Grilling helps in that regard as well; grilled vegetables are a versatile start to a full meal. My former manager ate the same (at least it appeared the same) large salad every day for lunch and never seemed to bore of it. Sadly, that is not me. Summer is probably the most difficult because I don’t feel like soups or stews, which are perfect lunches the other three seasons. This a long preamble to my welcoming fall with open arms. I know it’s not here yet but the signs of it are abundant and the weather has cooled enough for the oven to get some action.
Lunches for the week consisted of a Roasted Curry Cauliflower I found on Pinterest, served over Israeli Couscous. This was perfect and filling. I ate it all week and didn’t get tired of it at all. For the couscous I cheated a bit and bought Pereg Israeli couscous with vegetables. It has dehydrated vegetables and seasoning in it already but is very low salt (according to the nutritional info it contains 10 mg of salt, which is still 0% of intake). I’ve enjoyed this brand. You can make it without any oil but if you plan on having leftovers I would add a touch of oil so it doesn’t all stick together when refrigerated. The cauliflower is delicious! The spice level will depend on the curry level you use, mine was a subtle warm spice. I added peas for color and because I love them in Indian dishes. Cauliflower is actually probably one of my least favorite vegetables. I don’t dislike it but I rarely choose it either. Since going plant based I’ve realized there are more uses of it than I’d thought. Mashed, pureed, roasted…it’s quite agreeable to work with. If you haven’t liked in the past I’d give it a go in another preparation as I’m finding I enjoy it more than I’d thought.
For an afternoon snack I tried a new hummus (another Pinterest find), Garam Marsala Hummus. I was going to try a jalapeño hummus but was in a hurry and didn’t feel like roasting the peppers so went with this one…add all ingredients to food processor and go. Quite good and saved me from Philly Pretzel addiction (most days;)
The other two dishes this week were breakfasts. Vegan Buttermilk Pancakes were OK. A bit too airy for my liking, almost sponge cake like. I left the melted butter out and added blueberries, so not a fair judgment perhaps.
Finally, there was Forks Over Knives Cookbook‘s Sweet Potato Pie Oatmeal (pictured left). This is the first recipe I’ve made that I couldn’t eat at all. A small taste and it was far too rich and creamy for my breakfast taste and was thrown away. It may be me though. The recipe calls for date molasses and I only had blackstrap molasses. Attempts to find the difference and sweetness levels were unsuccessful, and well it was breakfast and I hadn’t had my coffee yet. I cut back on the quantity but still found this too sweet. After discarding, I made my own thrown together recipe that involved making the oats in strongly brewed chai tea and adding a few spoonfuls of the sweet potato. Perfect!
New Recipes Made This Week: 4
New Recipe Tally 2013: 101 (woo-hoo! Past the 100 mark)