Sunday, January 17, 2016

Weekly Eats (1/3 - 1/17)

Sorry that it has taken me so long to update you all on my weekly eats, but I took some time to settle back into my old job and to figure out what exactly I'd like to write about this year. I'm seeing more posts from my favorite bloggers sharing their weekly eats, meal plans, and meal prepping strategies (see here and here). I think this is a great idea because the question I get the most is how do I have time to cook so much? Plus how do I budget, plan, and effectively use all of my groceries? To explain this further, I'm planning a pantry and meal planning post for the future! But first, let's review the past couple of weeks.

I had half a pound of leftover Brussels sprouts from Christmas dinner, so I decided to make this easy hash for breakfast. It was quick and absolutely delicious! A great vegetable packed option for breakfast, plus you could really substitute any other vegetable, as long as it's shredded. Just be sure to top with plenty of hot sauce!

Dinner: Curried Split Pea Soup with hummus avocado tomato sandwiches

Whenever I'm looking for a quick, nourishing soup, I always go back to split pea soup. This variation has some Indian spices, but the preparation is very simple. Plus I always keep a pound of dried split peas in my pantry because you just never know! I paired it with some sandwiches made with GF rye style bread, tomatoes, avocado, and local spinach hummus. This is a sandwich I like to make when I want something with little to no work, plus it paired wonderfully with the soup! I had leftovers for lunches, as usual, and it lasted for a few days! The soup recipe originally comes from Vegan with a Vengeance.
 Dinner: Indian-spiced collard greens and tofu served over jasmine rice

I love buying a bunch of collard greens for a few reasons: they're incredibly cheap, super healthy for you, and versatile. I made two different recipes with just one bunch of collard greens! This is the first one I made, which has an incredibly short ingredient list and took less than 25 minutes from start to finish. I served mine over jasmine rice topped with a ton of chopped cilantro plus fresh lime juice. The flavors are amazing even though there's not much to this recipe!

With just a few small parts to prep (slaw, tofu, sauce, and veggies), you can make these absolutely amazing collard wraps! It seems like a lot to prep, but each component takes only a few minutes to make. On top of each collard leaf is a slather of wasabi-peanut sauce, baked tofu (I picked a simpler asian broiled tofu from Isa Does It), a carrot-cabbage slaw, plus cucumbers, green onions and cilantro. I've never had a real Banh Mi before, but these collard wraps were so refreshing and packed with flavor! When I ran out of collard leaves, I just put the components into spring rolls and ate them with sriracha. You could also eat them cold over rice or some rice noodles.

Dinner: simple, salty, nutty broccoli + soba plus steamed edamame 

Looking for your next quick meal? This easy broccoli soba is amazing. I can't put it into words. It's literally just cooking some soba, steaming broccoli (and edamame if you'd like extra protein), and mixing together this fabulous, nutty sauce. The sauce is everything I want - sweet, nutty, umami, incredible, spicy. It has raw garlic, ginger, and cayenne/red pepper for extra heat, making it perfect if you're sick (but tired of soup). When I used all of the sauce, I ate the rest of the soba/broccoli/edamame with vegan butter and GF tamari, another incredibly delicious combo. 

Dinner: Black Bean Yam Soup with Cilantro and Orange served over jasmine rice

I know, I juice in a soup? It's new to me too, but I trust pretty much anything that comes from Appetite for Reduction. This soup is packed with nutrients, flavor, and spice from the jalapeno peppers. I served it over some jasmine rice for some extra bulk, but serving soup with rice also stretches it more! Plus having cooked rice on hand can turn it into other meals, like fried rice, if you're in a quick pinch! I usually go for jasmine because it takes 15 minutes to make and it goes with everything, plus I love its fragrant flavor.

Getting up for work at 5:30 AM five days a week can be tiresome. For a few months, I didn't have to be up until later, so I had more time to cook breakfast every day. Now that I have to be up so early, sometimes I will cook oatmeal in the slow-cooker overnight, or I'll prep some instant oatmeal. Instant GF oatmeal can run me $5 - $7 a box, with only 8-10 servings. I prepped this large batch of maple oatmeal at home and it will last me over two weeks! The prep is minimal, but the pay off is wonderful. Sometimes I will eat it at home, or I can bring it to work and just add hot water plus toppings! I love having the option for a healthy breakfast whenever I need one.

Overview: I wish that I would have cooked a little more this past week, but I did successfully have lunch for work every day. I'd like to not eat out quite as much in the future, except for the occasional Mexican outing (which I can't help, truth be told). I am excited to keep trying new recipes, and I'm happy that this is how my New Year is starting off!

Ideas for the upcoming week: crunchy black bean tacos; vegan queso bowls; one-pot Diovolo pasta; maple doughnuts with salted almond butter glaze; deviled eggs for snacks; apple pie granola bars

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