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Thursday, January 04, 2007

Healthy cuisine: the dark, fibrous side....

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You know how they say that every cloud has a silver lining? Methinks the reverse might also be true...inside every bright and shiny penny, there lies a dark core that no one ever talks about.

I wish I could say that four days of healthy eating has done wonders for my energy levels, physique and overall feelings of health. I wish I could say that all of my newfound energy led me to briskly skip my way around the house, cleaning as I go.

But it would be an utter lie.

Imagine you take a body that has subsisted entirely on refined carbs, sugar, fat and alcohol. Imagine that you take all this of this indulgent goodness away, only to replace it with fibre, veggies, water and tea.

Guess what happens to this poor beleaguered guessed it....

And if you didn't, just google "effects of eating beans" and you'll have a pretty good idea.

That said, I'm still on track, still sitting next to bags of smarties and hershey kisses that I have yet to touch. Tonight's dinner was so healthy, nutritious and actually yummy that the suffering might just be worth it.

I didn't actually have a plan in mind when I set out to make dinner tonight, but I did have a fridge full of random this is what ensued.

One of my favourite healthy comfort foods is homemade blended soup. It's SUPER easy to make - you just chop up an onion, and saute in a pan in olive oil. Then you add whatever veggies you have on hand, brown for a little while and add stock to cover. Simmer away, then blend with an immersion blender. You can add fresh herbs or dried herbs (add the dry ones at the same time at the stock) and add water if you want a thinner soup. To dress it up, you can squiggle some low fat sour cream (or fat free sour cream) over top and grind some pepper too.

Here's my version in progress (I used onion, 5 carrots, 2 small potatoes and about 1.5 cups of mushrooms, along with some fresh ginger and coriander)


Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.......veggies......the longer you saute them, the richer the flavour - sometimes the veggies will caramelize a bit on the bottom to deepen the flavour (if you have more time and are less lazy than I am, roast your veggies in the oven first - it will be even better). Parsnips are especially good. :)

As I mentioned above, I drizzled fat-free sour cream over top to make it look pretty, and just added a sprig of coriander. Carrots are also awesome with orange juice or even a dash of pomegranate with saffron and cinnamon to make a more exotic soup. Yummy.


Veggie soup is so forgiving - you really can't make a bad one. It's something everyone should master and feel comfortable to play with...remember, recipes are only guidelines and while baking might be a science, cooking certainly isn't (thank goodness.....can't say that science was every my strong suit in school).

After all the adventures in soup-itude, I didn't really feel like making the salad I had initially planned on (also, I used up all my veggies in the soup....oops!).

I had high-fibre pitas in my cupboard (mmmmmmm.....6 grams of fibre apiece, more gastrointestinal joy), as well as tuna and chickpeas. So I started out with this rather unlikely combination, and this is what I ended up with. It was a little odd, but tasty, slightly exotic and very filling....

Tuna Chickpea Curry Pitas
1 can tuna
3/4 can of chickpeas
1/3 c fat free sour cream
1/2 t curry powder
1/2 c cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 t cumin
dash cardamom
1 T red wine vinegar
2 T chopped fresh coriander
grated cheddar

1. Combine tuna, chickpeas, sour cream, curry powder, cherry tomatoes, garlic, cumin, cardamom, red wine vinegarn and coriander (salt and pepper to taste).
2. Stuff pita and top with lettuce and grated cheddar. :) Hubs loved it, I enjoyed it, and I'm already looking forward to polishing off the leftover in my lunch tomorrow. :)


I love it when my food is colourful. Anyway, here's to hoping my tummy troubles ease off, and that I make the three foot trek from the couch (where I am right now) to the elliptical trainer (that I'm looking at). I'm sure I'm not the only one who's trying to shape up the wobbly bits (of which there are far too many)'s everyone else doing? Eating amazing healthy food? Off the wagon? Inquiring minds (okay, just my mind) want to know....

Thanks for reading!


Anonymous said...

Nope, no super healthy food yet. BIL is still here, and after a week in Italy, we're all feeling a bit jiggly. Hopefully things will get back on track next week, when I start to spend more quality time at the gym.

Your healthy food looks yummy, as always. I really should invest in an immesion blender.


Anonymous said...

I have been good at making healthy meals but am eating them and any spare candy I can find around the house. Last night I ate candy canes from last year ... the were actually soft, instead of going on the treadmill.

I am so bad. I even promised myself to walk the stairs at work... still bring my runners to work ever day but they have yet to leave my bag.

I have to loose all the December weight before I start trying on bridesmaid dresses so I better get my butt in gear!

Glad to hear you are having more of a success.

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