Doesn’t it seem as though a good rhythm of cooking goes in cycles? During those times, a new art form emerges as I transform what’s “everyday” and available into a delicious treat and the process comes with ease and delightful abandon. Then there are those down cycles when creativity is stuck, staring at my pantry wondering what to fix for dinner. In the midst of my daily routine last week, it occurred to me I was in one of those rare zone’s, joyfully engaged – so much so, it caught me unaware. Please allow me to indulge you in a review of my week of whole foods, whole meals.
Many of these ingredients may be new to you. In fact I’m going out on a limb here, taking the risk that you may consider the contents a little too weird for your tastes. I’ve included some sea vegetables, which are so high in minerals, rivaling their leafy cousins. You will notice Dulse, a sea vegetable from Maine that is especially high in B vitamins and iron which makes it an excellent choice for nursing mom’s. Arame, a mild flavored sea vegetable, I cooked later on in the week, pairing it with mushrooms and broccoli. Aduki beans that were used in the chili are particularly cleansing for the kidneys and have a wonderful earthy flavor.
Three Bean Chili with Aduki, Black Bean and Pinto Beans
sautéed Cabbage, Dulse and Kale.
Earlier in the week I had taught a bread class including the unyeasted flatbread, Chapathi’s. (See instructions for chapathi making on July 26th post, Breakfast Chapathi Wraps). I had dough leftover so I put it to good use in this menu. The chili was made the day before. When we returned home from church, all I had to do was cook up the veggies and make 2 chapathi’s. Pretty much anything wrapped in a chapathi is delicious! Very satisfying for a winter afternoon.
Fresh Green Salad
Beth, my co-worker asked me for some lentil recipes so this was inspired by her request. I cooked the lentils on Sunday night, so I had a head start when I returned home from work Monday night. Assembled a fresh green salad and some yummy guacamole and dinner was served.
Crock Pot Stewed Root Veggies with Chicken
Quickly Sauteed Cabbage
Before work, I layered onion, potato, burdock and carrots in a 6 quart crock pot. I placed 2 chicken breasts on top, added chicken stock, soy sauce and Sriracha sauce with a drizzle of toasted sesame oil. Turned the pot on low and forgot about it. Rinsed some brown rice and put it up to soak for the day. Returning home, I cooked the rice and shredded and sautéed some organic cabbage. Dinner done.
Potato, Cauliflower, Dulse Soup
Watercress Salad with a Sesame Dressing
This was a more labor intensive menu….but SO worth it! I was eager to try this soup recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks, Feeding The Whole Family, by Cynthia Lair. The sesame dressing is also from this cookbook. Delicious!
Ginger Sesame Vegetable Fried Rice
Broccoli, Mushrooms and Arame
With leftover brown rice from Tuesday’s dinner I made this vegetable fried rice with strips of egg “pancake” in it. I love the color and protein the egg adds. When making fried rice there are a few things to keep in mind 1) use cold rice 2) celery and onion always; 2 parts celery to 1 part onion 3) chop veggies finely. The addition of carrots, still from our garden added a fresh sweet ending to the meal.
Red Lentil Rosemary Soup
Kasha Pilaf with Sesame Sauce
Winter Watercress Salad with Pomegranate Dressing
We savored the leftovers from my morning cooking class for dinner. The salad was especially yummy!!
In the future, look for more Week In Review posts with a variety of topics. Your feedback is welcome!