Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What's for Dinner Wednesday - Salad Bar, Zucchini & Quinoa

It's been a while since I blogged about any meals, but I figured this was a good one to start back with. I've been wanting to try using the bread crumbs from the delicious cauliflower recipe in Appetite for Reduction to bread some zucchini, so tonight was the night. I baked them until tender and paired them with some marinara sauce for dipping, along with a quinoa pilaf and a "salad bar".

The zucchini was tasty, but my favorite part of the meal was the salad bar, mostly because it made leftovers for lunch the next day - even more delicious topped with the cold quinoa.

I'm going to try preparing salad bar "toppings" a few times a week to make salad assembly easier. It was so nice to just grab all the individual containers and have salad made in minutes - especially with ingredients like shredded beets that I normally wouldn't take the time to prep mid-day. And next time, I'll be adding containers of beans, nuts and seeds for even more topping options!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Ginger-Grapefruit Juice

This is probably the fruitiest juice I've made with hardly a veggie in sight. But, most of the ingredients are very cleansing and it makes for a tasty juice - the ginger and grapefruit definitely dominate - and the beets make it a gorgeous color. This makes enough for two small servings since I usually have it for a snack (not a meal).

Ginger-Grapefruit Juice

1 grapefruit
1 orange
2 apples
1 small (or 1/2 large) beet
1" chunk of ginger

Sunday, September 25, 2011

DeBoles Organic Pasta for $0.35/Box at Whole Foods

Checking out at Whole Foods yesterday, I heard the cashier ask the customer in front of me if she had a coupon for the DeBoles organic pasta she was buying. When she didn't, he got one for her explaining that it made the pasta only $0.50 per box - and going on to add that he had a customer in earlier who bought 12 and got the case discount on top of the coupon savings.So of course I headed back there today to stock up on pasta! Here's the deal . . .

Several varieties of DeBoles pasta (mainly the ones in the 8 oz. boxes) are on sale for $1.50 (regular price $2.99). Buy 12 for $18.00, and you'll get a 10% case discount, bringing the price down to $16.20. Print out 12 $1/1 coupons from the Whole Foods website, and those 12 boxes will only cost you $4.20 - or $0.35/box! I stocked up on several varieties, including the Rice Angel Hair and Multigrain Spaghetti (both gluten free).

Basic Green Juice

I've been experimenting with different juices more and more lately, and I'm going to start sharing some recipes here as I come up with good ones. But I wanted to start by sharing the basic green juice that I usually make, which is based on the recipe from Crazy Sexy Diet. This usually makes enough for one large juice, although I usually double it to have two mornings in a row.

1 large (or two small) cucumber
3 leaves romaine
2 cups loosely-packed kale (or other greens)
3 celery stalks
1 broccoli stem
1 apple
1 pear

I actually like this one "as is", but sometimes I'll add half a beet, a lemon or a small chunk of ginger.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Juice Heaven

Long time no talk, I know. As many of you know, out sister blog is devoted to homeschooling, so back-to-school season leaves me with little time to think about food. Or at least to blog about it.

But today, I'm wrapping up the last day of a 7-day juice fast and it's been an interesting week. First of all, it's the longest fast I've done and also the first time I've incorporated any type of fruit juices into my daily intake. In the past, I've done entirely green juice (kale, romaine, cucumber, broccoli stems, celery, apple and pear with an occasional addition of ginger, lemon or beet). But this time, since Jim was juicing with me for the first few days, I experimented with a little variety, adding one "fruity" type juice to the mix.

The theme for the week seemed to be orange, and I've juiced every possible combination of orange, grapefruit, mango, sweet potato, carrot, pineapple and golden beet. Gotta feel like I'm still getting some veggies in even for the sweet juices! The variety has been wonderful, and of course, the orange produce contains a different range of nutrients than the green (which I'm still drinking the rest of the day). Plus, it's been nice to have a little treat to look forward to each day!

My biggest excitement for the week, however, has been the arrival of my new juicer. After much research (and some trial and error), I have finally found the PERFECT juice for me. I can't even begin to express how much I love it and how easy it's made juicing for me.

The juicer I finally purchased is the Omega VRT350. It combines the low-speed, nutrient-saving properties of a masticating juicer (juice stays fresh for up to 72 hours) with the convenience and portability of a centrifugal juicer. Smaller and lighter than my Vitamix, I can easily see it traveling with us. It's self-feeding (just drop the produce in and it chews it up - no pushing!) and ejects the pulp into a separate container so you don't have to stop and take apart the machine when it fills up. The pulp coming out of the machine is incredibly dry with greens and most veggies and fruits, and clean-up is super easy!

I know there's no juicer that is perfect for every person and every use, but without a doubt, this one is perfect for me! I feel completely ridiculous being so worked up about a kitchen appliance, but this machine has made my life so much easier - especially this week during my fast. Since I normally have juice just once a day (for breakfast), I could easily spend just 20 minutes twice a week to have juicw ready for me each morning.

So even though tomorrow I'll be breaking my fast with some fruits and veggies, I'm looking forward to using this machine for a long time to come!