Posts Tagged 'broccoli'

Udon with Peanut-Hoisin Sauce

I think I sometimes take for granted how great it is to have a happy, healthy kid.

Ellie was a little bit sick a few days ago and it was pretty much the saddest thing ever. She only had a fever of 101 and it was very short-lived, but for about 24 hours, she was totally not herself.

Our loud, independent girl suddenly morphed into a timid baby who just wanted to be held for hours on end. We were happy to provide her with all the cuddling she needed, but it was a huge relief when her temperature and personality went back to normal.

I got this cookbook a couple weeks ago and have been using it constantly. I’m always on the lookout for fast, healthy meals, particularly those that contain lots of vegetables.

This recipe called for linguine but I think udon makes more sense with the flavors. Plus, peanut sauce is one of my favorite things ever, so I knew I would like this.


Avocado and Dill Pasta Salad

I have found the dish I want to bring to every potluck from now on.

Except I don’t really go to potlucks. But if I did, I’d bring this always.  So full of vegetables, and the dressing is INSANE (in a good way).

It has been one heck of a week.  On Monday, I turned 28.  There was Chinese food, great friends and so much cake (funfetti with pink frosting, perfect for a 28 year old).

Alyssa and I decided the cake must be magic, because we both had AMAZING runs on Tuesday. She busted out some crazy fast mile repeats, and I did a 6 mile run with 4 tempo miles all under 7:00 min/mile!

We started a space unit at school, and this week the kids made Alka Seltzer rockets. I love my job.

Today I went for my second run of the week (I guess I’m going for quality, not quantity at the moment) and ended up doing 4.5 miles at 7:30 min/mile. It didn’t even feel that hard! I don’t know where this speed came from– or if it will stick around — but I like it.

I just made a few changes to this salad as it was originally written on Ashley’s beautiful blog. I served it over a bed of mixed sprouts, which was heavenly, and I left the sweetener out of the dressing. There are so many little tweaks you can make to personalize it!


Soba Salad with Sesame-Miso Dressing

I really love soba noodles.  It all started with the recipe for Otsu in Super Natural Cooking, and grew from there into a mild obsession. I pretty much insist on eating them at least once a week, and I love the way they provide a pleasantly earthy backdrop for a huge range of flavors and textures.

Here, I added some red cabbage, sliced carrots, sauteed portobellos, blanched broccoli, avocado and fried tofu and tossed it all with a very simple miso and sesame oil dressing. Delicious!

In other news, we’re giving the state tests this week at school. I could rant for DAYS about my feelings on testing (and public education in general), but this is not the time or place. Instead, I’ll just say that no matter what our scores are, my kids this year have completely blown me away. I have students from Burma and the Philippines who’ve been in this country for just a couple years but can write a lab report with precise details and thoughtful conclusions. I have a student who asks the most awesome and insightful questions every single day. I have fantastic models of organic compounds built by the kids. I have their work all over my walls and I hear their thoughtful discussions every single day, and THAT is what shows how amazing they are , NOT a pick-the-best-answer-and-fill-in-the-bubble test.

I’ve been turning to kitchen therapy a lot this week. Not because work is stressing me out, but because I’m hardly running so I need somewhere to focus my energy. I bought some caperberries at the grocery store last week because I’d never seen them before and was curious.

They taste like a cross between a green olive and a caper (two flavors I love), but they have weird little grainy seeds inside so I think I’ll stick with either olives OR capers from now on. I did use them to make a pasta dish with roasted cauliflower, though, and THAT was pretty good.

Happy Friday!


Broccoli White Cheddar Mac and Cheese

I ran TWO DAYS in a row! Without screaming in pain, without making my hip worse, and without going crazy and pushing myself way too hard.

I was signed up for a trail race in Pacifica on Saturday morning, and all week I was pretty sure it wasn’t going to happen. BUT after the success of Friday’s treadmill run, I decided to go for it. It was only 9 KM, but it was a ton of fun.

The VERY tiny, very informal start (my race had 38 people in it). Right from the beginning I was the second woman, but the third place woman caught me on the first downhill. Once we started climbing again, I passed her and was feeling really strong.  I was tempted to stop and take pictures because the views over the park and out toward the ocean were beautiful, but the competitor in me would not let that happen.

I don’t know if it’s the fact that I’ve been doing a million squats with Jillian Michaels or going to spin more, but my legs felt so strong and I never felt tempted to walk. At the top of the second hill, I knew it was entirely downhill to the finish so I tried to just let go and fly down without falling and breaking my face. I definitely need to practice downhills because I’m pretty timid.

I finished in 54:58, second female and tenth overall. The finish line was just as casual as the start.

The trails were in amazingly good shape considering the nonstop rain we had all week. It was also pretty nice to only have a 20 minute drive home. I had a nice pancake breakfast with Mike while Ellie sat in the high chair and talked nonstop.

We spent the afternoon browsing at a thrift store in the East Bay. There’s nothing more fun than scoping out four dollar jackets with a baby strapped to you. I actually found a fun vintage jacket that I’ll debut once it’s back from the dry cleaners.

As the day wound down, it was pretty clear that comfort food was needed.  I put a lot of broccoli into this, and used brown rice pasta (but any small pasta will work).  I don’t normally buy white cheddar, but it caught my eye the other day and it worked perfectly here.


Tortellini Salad

I definitely made the most of this three day weekend. In addition to penguins, grocery shopping, and paper-grading, I got to go for an awesome 14 mile run to celebrate Aron’s birthday.

It was the longest run I’ve done since Boston, and it felt fantastic.

I also did a little kitchen project that should be ready in about 3 weeks.

There are tons of organic lemons available right now so it’s the perfect time to preserve them!

One thing we noticed after buying groceries last week was how much plastic was included with our produce. We were completely disgusted, so this week we made a point to buy everything at the farmers market or the co-op with our re-usable produce bags. The packaging from last week is on the left and this week is on the right. Definitely an improvement.

I also found a great blog about living without plastic.

The beauty of this salad is that everything in it can be bought in bulk so there’s no waste. I know some people have issues with bulk bins, but I’ve been shopping out of them for years and never had a problem. Plus it’s a great way to try just a little bit of something without having to commit to a big package.

As I was making this I really wasn’t sure about how well everything would work together…broccoli, lemon, pine nuts, tortellini, cilantro, mint, sprouts. It all sounded good, but it also sounded like a lot of different flavors. It turned out to be completely delicious (not surprising, it’s one of Heidi’s recipes!

(adapted from Super Natural Every Day)

Mashed Potato Cakes with Broccoli and Shallots

I was planning on blogging a healthy dinner yesterday, but what I ended up making was kind of boring. There was nothing wrong with it…it just wasn’t exciting.

I think lime juice and cilantro would have helped it tremendously, but I didn’t have either of those things in the fridge. I roasted some butternut squash with smoked paprika, cooked some farro, and sauteed onions, bell peppers, and celery, then added black beans. Lots of healthy stuff, but not enough in the flavor department.

This on the other hand, was a lot better. I mashed up a bunch of red potatoes (with the skins still on) with a few white beans, added an egg, and baked it in little cakes. Then I topped them with roasted broccoli and shallots, cooked in butter with a little balsamic.

I’m SO glad I’m not the girl who avoids butter anymore. I don’t need to pull a Paula Deen and add a stick and a half to everything I make, but I’ve come to appreciate it so much more than a few years ago, when I was convinced eating it would instantly make me fat (but for some reason I didn’t worry about what the beer and late-night Taco Bell runs were doing to my figure. Logic fail.)

Hanging out with Ellie all day, every day this week is pretty awesome, but I’ve gotta say, I don’t know how stay-at-home moms do it. I love her, but the hours sort of dragged today (especially when she was fussy). I need to work on appreciating these moments though, because she is growing so fast. She has a whole new range of sounds and is trying so hard to talk! It’s pretty adorable.

I’m almost done with her stocking, and I’m glad I went for the tougher pattern. I was totally intimidated by wrapping and turning, and almost made a pattern that just used two regular needles, but I figured I should try and push myself to do something new, and it’s working out well. I only had to watch three different YouTube videos to make sure I was W&T-ing correctly…

I found the pattern on Ravelry and I love it!


Maple-Miso Tofu with Broccoli and Delicata Squash

This has been a pretty perfect week for running. There was that awesome 8K on Sunday, a beautiful morning run on Tuesday (where I took this picture)…

and today Ellie and I conquered 9 miles (9:09 min/mile)! She was alert and smiling the whole time. I think she likes running as much as I do!

It’s never a secret when I like something. I will talk about it a lot, cook with it/listen to it/read it multiple times, and just generally make it perfectly clear to absolutely everyone around me that I found the best thing ever.

Right now the best thing ever is delicata squash.

I just love the pretty half moons I slice it into, and the fact that I don’t have to peel it. It’s been featured in quite a few dinners around here lately, but this one is probably my favorite.

The recipe is from the always amazing Joanne, which she posted on Marcus Samuelson’s site. Quick side note: Joanne is a doctor (or technically in the process of becoming a doctor) and her blog is completely awesome. Two other blogs I love (The Curvy Carrot and Annie’s Eats are also written by doctors. I can barely throw together blog posts with my far less demanding career, so those women are seriously impressive!

(adapted from <a href="; via Joanne Bruno for Marcus Samuelsson)

1/4 cup white miso
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 16-oz block extra-firm tofu, pressed and cut into dice
3 small delicata squash, cut in half lengthwise and seeded
3 tbsp vegetable oil, divided
1 bunch broccoli, cut into florets

Whisk together the miso, maple syrup, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and mirin in a medium bowl. Add the tofu and stir well. Cover and refrigerate for 1-4 hours.

Preheat the oven to 425 F. Cut the squash into 1/2″-thick slices. Toss with 1 tbsp oil and spread on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for about 25 minutes or until tender.

Heat 1 tbsp oil in a skillet and add the broccoli. Saute until crisp-tender (you should be able to pierce it with a fork without too much trouble, but it shouldn’t be mushy), about 10 minutes. Set aside.

Heat the last tbsp oil in the skillet and add the tofu (remove it from the marinade with a slotted spoon and reserve the mardinade). Stir-fry until golden brown.

Toss the squash, broccoli, and tofu together in a large bowl and add reserved marinade to taste (I added about half).

Broccoli Cheddar Pizza

This weekend included some pretty great things. Pizza (obviously).

Lots of time with this guy.

And this girl (even if she was asleep for a lot of it).

Yogurt! We don’t have a decent yogurt place in our town, which is fantastic and terrible at the same time.

Breakfast…made by my fabulous husband.

Wine and chocolate. Thank you, Trader Joe’s, for always having exceptionally good values on wine and chocolate to go with it.

This pizza is not particularly ground-breaking, but it’s a nice way to eat broccoli and have some not-typical-pizza-flavors. Be pretty liberal with the garlic and olive oil because it really helps out the flavor and texture under the cheese!


dough for 2 10″ pizzas
3-4 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 medium head broccoli, cut in florets
1 1/2 to 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 red onion, cut into thin rings

Preheat oven to 500 F (with a pizza stone if you have one)

Steam the broccoli until crisp-tender (it should look bright green and still have a little bit of crunch).

Stretch out your dough and brush with 1 or 2 tbsp olive oil. Sprinkle evenly with minced garlic.

Top the oil-brushed crust with broccoli and a few red onion rings, then sprinkle with cheese.

Slide onto the pizza stone and bake until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbly, approximately 10 minutes.

Nasi Goreng (Indonesian Fried Rice)

I really, really love Southeast Asia. I’ve been to Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam, and would happily go back, preferably for an extended period of time. I still haven’t been to Indonesia, but that doesn’t stop me from wanting to explore some of their food.

I looked at a few different recipes for Nasi Goreng, and even though I’ve never had it I pretty much immediately knew I’d love it (since I adore Thai style fried rice and this didn’t look that different.) It’s incredibly simple – just fry up some garlic and shallot, add the rice, add some vegetables, add some sauce, and top with a fried egg.

The one thing you’ll need to find is Kecap Manis, which is sweet soy sauce (I found it at our Asian grocery store). It pretty much has the consistency of molasses, and is mostly sugar with some soy sauce flavoring. You only need a tablespoon, so it might work to make a sugar syrup and add some soy sauce, but I have no idea what kind of ratios you’d use. I realize that’s extremely helpful.

This isn’t completely authentic because I didn’t use shrimp paste, but this recipe is a great starting point for adding whatever vegetables or protein you may have on hand. Not pictured, but essential (at least according to me) is a ton of chili sauce on top!

(inspired by Epicurious and Simply Delicious)

2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 cups day-old cooked rice (I used half brown, half white)
1 1/2 cups chopped vegetables (I used about a cup of broccoli and half a cup of cabbage)
1 Tbsp kecap manis
1 egg per serving, fried
chili sauce (Sambal Oelek or Sriracha – optional)

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the shallot and garlic and cook for a few minutes, until soft and very fragrant.

Add the rice and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the vegetables and continue to stir fry until they are cooked. Turn off the heat, add the kecap manis, and mix well.

Divide among bowls and top each serving with a fried egg. Serve with extra kecap manis and chili sauce on the side.

Almost-raw vegan creamy broccoli soup

I may have slightly over-indulged in home-made coleslaw and milk chocolate ice cream this weekend. I definitely do not subscribe to the “oh crap I ate so horribly I better go to the gym and work it all off” mentality (and Megan wrote a great post that explains exactly what I mean better than I could), but I do realize that I feel much better when I’m working out consistently and eating lots of fruits and vegetables (duh?)

ANYWAY… after 3 days of unpacking, cleaning, less than stellar eating, and generally feeling kind of like a mess (which happens when your life is in boxes, I guess), I turned it all around today and felt a whole lot better.

Today got off to a kind of slow start… I ended up getting some work done for my online class, then fell asleep on the couch for a couple hours, but I did manage to get to the gym and bike for 45 minutes, with some upper body weights afterwards.

I knew I wanted something pretty healthy, because except for grilled corn and and coleslaw, my life has been a little lacking in vegetables lately. I tried out an almost entirely raw broccoli soup recipe from this book:

I say almost-raw because you steam the broccoli for a few minutes, but other than that, there’s no cooking involved. I was highly skeptical because it seemed like a random mix of ingredients but this stuff was GOOD. Even Mike approved, and he’s quick to call me out when I make food that is a little too hippie-ish. It tastes a little like guacamole (because of the avocado) but with a slightly more complex flavor profile because of the herbs and lemon. I didn’t realize it until after I’d taken the picture, but I accidentally left out the onion. I’m kind of glad I did though, because I’m not a huge fan of raw onion, and I think there was plenty of flavor without it.

You may have seen a couple other blogs giving this book away (I know Anne and Joanne both did) and I have a copy to give away too!

I like the mix of recipes (for food as well as beauty products) and chapters about foods that can boost your mood, reduce stress, and improve PMS symptoms. Definitely a useful resource if you’re interested in improving your diet! TO WIN: just leave a comment telling me your favorite healthy food (linking to the recipe would be awesome, but you definitely don’t have to). I’ll randomly pick a winner July 7th at 8 PM.

And the winner is…. Julie! Enjoy the book!

FTC Disclaimer: Vega sent me two copies of this book for free – one to review and one to give away. The views expressed above are entirely my own

(Must Have Been Something I Ate) by Peggy Kostopoulos)

1 medium head broccoli, cut into florets and steamed just until tender
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 small yellow onion, chopped (optional – I left it out)
1 clove garlic, minced
1″ piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
juice of half a lemon
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
pinch sea salt
1/2 cup warm water
2 tbsp olive oil
half an avocado, diced

2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
1/4 avocado, diced
pinch cayenne

Combine the broccoli, celery, garlic, ginger, onion (if using), lemon juice, oregano, salt, pepper, water and half avocado in a blender and puree until smooth. Add more water as needed until soup reaches desired consistency (I added about 1 1/2 cups total). Drizzle in olive oil and stir until smooth.

Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with pumpkin seeds, avocado, and cayenne. Serve immediately.


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