Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Lunch for Two

Todd works from home unless he is meeting with a client.  This gives us the chance to each lunch together every few days, it's pretty great.  Usually our lunch consists of turkey sandwiches with pickles, cheese, and mustard (extra mustard on the side for me please) and some sort of fruit (clementine’s) and vegetable (carrots and cucumbers).  Usually once a week I try to make something other than the standard turkey sandwich or leftovers (I eat a lot of leftover for lunch).  Last week I made Cookie and Kate's spicy kale and coconut stir fry and I'm obsessed.  Todd and I joked that this stir fry was like his bag of potato chips because I could not stop taking bites.  I ate the leftovers for lunch the next day and made it again yesterday to share with a neighbor.  Hurray for delicious healthy food!
Spicy Kale and Coconut Stir Fry
2 tablespoon coconut oil
2 eggs, beaten with a dash of salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 red bell pepper julienned
1 carrot, peeled and julienned
5 Brussels sprouts very thinly sliced
1 medium bunch kale, ribs removed and leaves finely shredded
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted
2 cups cooked and chilled brown rice
2 teaspoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
2 teaspoons sriracha
1 lime halved
Fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.  Once the pan is hot enough that a drop of water sizzles on contact, add 1 teaspoon oil.  Pour in the eggs and cook until the eggs are scrambled and lightly set.  Transfer the eggs to an empty bowl.  Wipe out the pan with a paper towel.
Add 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan and add the garlic, onions, and additional vegetables.  Cook, while stirring until the vegetables are just tender.  Add the kale and salt.  Continue to cook, stirring frequently until the kale is wilted and tender.  Transfer the vegetable mixture to the bowl with the eggs.
Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the pan.  Add the toasted coconut flakes and rice and cook,
stirring frequently, until the rice is hot.
Pour the vegetables and eggs back into the pan.  Add the tamari and sriracha.  Stir to combine and break up any large clumps of scrambled egg.  Squeeze the juice of half of a lime over the dish and stir to combine.  Pour the stir fry onto a serving plate and garnish with fresh cilantro.  Serve with lime wedges and extra sriracha for those who like it extra spicy.
Recipe slightly adapted from Cookie and Kate

Monday, February 2, 2015

Maple Spiced Whole Wheat Banana Bread

Monday and Friday mornings I'm up before the crack of dawn.  Noah has basketball practice at 5:45 am and because Todd is the assistant coach he goes with Noah.  I normally don't leave our house until 5:40 am, but because Preston is not in love with the idea of being home alone with just Stella in the wee hours of the morning and so my alarm goes off at 4:20 am on basketball practice mornings.  This gives me enough time to run and be back as Todd and Noah are leaving for practice.  4:20 am is early, really, really early, but I kind of have a love-hate relationship with being up at that time of day.  I'm tired, yes, but I really like being done and home from running by 5:45.  It's amazing what you can accomplish in the early hours of the morning.  The past couple of Friday mornings I've made this banana bread and my house smells heavenly by 7 am and no one except Preston complains when we get to have warm banana bread for breakfast.  (Noah usually grabs a thick slice with a great deal of butter on it (can you guess what books Stella and I have been reading...Mercy Watson) as he hustles out the door to catch the bus for school.)  

Maple Spiced Whole Wheat Banana Bread

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
2 eggs
1 cup mashed bananas (about 2 large bananas)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup hot water
1 cup chopped bittersweet chocolate
1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan and line with parchment with parchment overhanging the edges of the pan.

In a large bowl, beat oil and maple syrup together.  Add eggs and beat well.  Stir in vanilla, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom.  Add bananas and mix until just combined.   

Add baking soda to hot water, stir to mix.  Add to the baking soda water to the banana mixture and mix to combine.  Next, stir in the flour until just combined. Stir chopped chocolate into batter.  Be careful to not over mix.  Spread batter into greased loaf pan and sprinkle with toasted hazelnuts.

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes until the bread is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.  Let the bread cool for 5 minutes before removing it from the pan.  Let cool for 30 minutes before slicing if you can wait that long (we couldn't).

*This recipe is inspired by Cookie and Kate's whole wheat banana bread