How was everyone’s weekend? I had an amazing BBQ steak dinner (not cooked by me, I can’t grill steak) with some girls from work. The lady that hosted even bought a bottle of the special steak sauce from Japanese Village. Have you been there? It’s a teppanyaki restaurant…you know, where they cook in front of you and throw the knives and your dinner in the air? It’s fun…and Holy F, the steak sauce is life changing.
Sunday I cooked up some delicious freezer fillers for one of my besties. My freezer is full and I had a hankering to do some prep. I know, I know, what’s wrong with me?
I live for this shit. For real. Finding recipes, planning meals, building grocery lists, aaaand the best part…GROCERY SHOPPING!! Seriously, I love it. I’ve looked into signing up for Spud (Sustainable Produce Urban Delivery), but I think I would miss grocery shopping. Has anyone out there tried Spud? I might have to give it a whirl cuz sometimes, despite my love for the grocery store…
I shopped Saturday morning and cooked for a couple of hours in the afternoon, then worked for another 6 hours or so on Sunday. But really, it could have all been done in a day. You just have to be prepared and efficient with your time. My number one tip would be to do all of your veggie prep at once. I actually go through all of the recipes first, and list out what needs to be cut up for each meal (ie. Carrots: 1 cup diced, 1 cup sliced, extra for veggie bags). I find this to be a huge time saver, rather than cleaning a pepper and dicing it for one meal and then coming to my next recipe and realizing that I need another diced pepper. I also cut up extra carrots, celery, peppers etc. and throw them in ziplocs for lunches. Need peeled and diced butternut squash for veggie burgers? Prep 2 and you have a side dish ready to go during the week. It’s all about using my time wisely so I can be as lazy as possible during the week. #truth
So, what did I make you ask. Well…
- Blueberry & Banana Baked Oatmeal – these little oatmeals are so cute. And also, so delicious. The base recipe is from Oh She Glows Portable Baked Oatmeal and they are super customizable. Apples and cinnamon would be good, strawberry-banana…I added blueberries to the batter, and put sliced banana at the bottom of each jar for a yummy surprise. Throw it in the microwave and enjoy with a splash of cream or a scoop of vanilla or coconut greek yogurt. YUM.
Sidenote – I have recently fallen in love with mason jars. You can bake in them, freeze them, they’re dishwasher and microwave safe, aaand they’re like a buck a piece so if one breaks, or you forget one in the fridge and it becomes a science project, pitch it. It’s a buck.
- Spicy Butternut Squash & Black Bean Burgers – these are SO good. I’m totally into veggie burgers lately. They’re a great freezer staple for a delicious, hearty meal that is quick & easy. #thatswhatshesaid. I didn’t bother saving the squash seeds…seriously, who has time for that? Not this kid. I just threw in a handful of pumpkin seeds. I cook my burgers in the oven, on a cast iron griddle, at about 400°F for 10-15 minutes per side. We typically eat them sans bun, with a scoop of greek yogurt on top and kale chips on the side. If you want more spice, stir some sriracha or adobo sauce (from those canned chipotle peppers) into the yogurt. Ooh and guac would be delicious too! (Mental Note – add avocado to the grocery list).
- Indian Cauliflower & Lentil Soup – This soup is from the Oh She Glows cookbook, by Angela Liddon. I tried it last weekend at the Elan Performance Ignite2015 Retreat and had to make it again. My friend Rebecca (*see below for Rebecca’s Turkey Lentil Muffins from the Nourish cookbook) hosted this amaaazing weekend and my Man sent me on the retreat as a Christmas gift. We did pilates, snowshoed, soaked in the hot tub (and then made snow angels), ate some delicious vegetarian fare, and created vision boards. It was such a fun and inspiring weekend. Anyway, to the food…we had this soup for lunch one day and it is SO good. The sweetness of the potato, the spice of the curry and turmeric, and you pretty much can’t go wrong with cauliflower in my books. Make this! I don’t have a picture of the finished product, but trust me, it’s beautiful and delicious, just like everything else in this amazing cookbook.
*COOKING LESSON: If you are going to be doubling a recipe (as I did with this soup), always ensure that your pot is going to be big enough. Otherwise this happens…
…and you end up wasting an hour of precious cooking time cleaning soup off of (and out of) your stovetop. Fun Times.
- Nourish Turkey Lentil Muffins – these are sooo tasty and another huge hit from the Nourish cookbook. Nourish is all about clean eating. The recipes are full of real food, with wholesome and accessible ingredients, and the photos in the book are beautiful. A couple of our other favourites are the Wild Spaghetti and the Lean Mean Black Bean Burgers. These turkey muffins are packed with veggie goodness and the pumpkin seeds and cranberries add sweetness and crunch. Check out a few more of Rebecca’s delicious clean-eating Nourish recipes here.
- Spinach, Mushroom & Goat Cheese Mini Quinoa Cups – these are inspired by the Mini Ham and Cheese Quinoa Cups from Iowa Girl Eats. I swapped out the ham and zucchini for sautéed mushrooms and spinach, and the cheddar for crumbled goat cheese. I love these because they are another super easy, super customizable and (most importantly) delicious freezer staple. Don’t like spinach and mushrooms? Try ham/broccoli/cheddar, or turkey/ham/swiss, or chicken/black bean/jalapeno havarti…you basically have an unlimited number of combinations. Here’s a ‘Before’ pic…I failed to capture an ‘After’…
So there you go, 5 meals in a day. What are you guys eating this week?
Until next time, check out the links and test some of these awesome recipes yourselves. They are worth it, I promise.