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Robinsbite: March 2011

Sunday, March 27, 2011

What's for Dinner? Rice Pilaf Redo

The grill was on tonight for Sunday dinner. I had the salmon, sausages, veggies and dessert covered. Starch? What to do, what to do....

A quick look around the kitchen found me staring at a box of Near East Rice Pilaf, 1 sweet potato, 1 yellow onion and a handful of baby carrots.

To me, rice pilaf is boring on its own. In fact, it's a rare day that I would choose (much less cook) rice as a starchy side dish. But, I knew my dining companions loved rice and I wanted to create something that they would enjoy and that would have more of an impressive nutrition and flavor profile.

Here's what happened to the standard box of Rice Pilaf
  • Cooked pilaf according to package directions 
  • Diced the onion and carrots & cooked low and slow in a saute pan with splash of olive oil
  • Microwaved sweet potato until just tender and diced into small pieces
 Once the rice was cooked, I added the onion, carrots and diced sweet potato to the bowl. No additional seasonings were added. 

Results? Beautiful bursts of orange amongst the pale yellow rice and an unexpected sweetness from the onion hightened this basic box of rice. Additionally, a huge boost in nutritional value from the carrots and the sweet potato (and onion)  and an easy way to get added nutrition & veggies into a basic kitchen staple. Oh, and my dinner guests loved it!

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Eating-But Not Wearing-Green Today

I'm not going to lie to you-I am not wearing green. It's just not my color. I am 100% on board with Valentine red, July 4th red, white and blue,  Halloween orange and well, that's about it. You won't see green on this body-ever. I'm just sayin.

Enter the fields of green produce. On any given day, you'll see me eating green foods....lettuces, spinach, kale, grapes, cucs, etc.

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I'm giving a special shout out to the Superbowl produce powerhouse avocado, underrated and disrespected brussels sprouts and the now-second-to-the-newest-dark-leafy-green-media-darling-kale- spinach. Here's how I'll do it:

Lunch-avocado slices added to my bean burrito (and tomato, too)

Dinner-strawberry salad with spinach, pepitas (pumpkin seeds) and grana padano cheese along with sauteed brussels sprouts-seasoned with a touch of olive oil, shallots, salt and pepper

Pretty basic. No need to be fancy to get your greens in for the day-St. Patty's day or not, these greenies have nutrients and phytonutrients that we need every day. Not to mention they are fiber rich and, best of all--THEY TASTE GOOD. I get it-I know-we aren't going to eat anything unless it tastes good.

Here's a few recipes to get you started to a tasty green menu today:

Ina G's Roasted Brussels Sprouts 
A tasty take on the spinach and strawberry salad mentioned above 
Another one of Ina's-grapefruit and avocado salad

Let's hear how you incorporated your "greens" today! Posting recipes is encouraged!

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