Am back friends! A bit battered & bruised (quite literally) but all in one piece and very thankful the surgery is over with. My husband keeps joking I’m like “Wolverine” from the X-Men comics because my incisions healed so well and I bounced back in no time. I think that when you eat well and take good care of your body, your body works with you and thanks you back in return.
I was [technically] supposed to write about some delicious, gooey, fudge, “Buckwheat Brownies”… but we’re going to hold off on those until next week. If you follow me on Snapchat, you’ll see am about to test the recipe (yet a second time) and was just stocking up on some naturally gluten free and very affordable buckwheat flour. Developing recipes is no easy task, but it sure is a lot of fun! Testing involves trying something once, improving on the measurements (based on what you know and have learned) and then off to attempt it a second time to see if anything was actually improved upon. It also involves trying different flours and feeding your family and friends insane amounts of cake (no one complains about this part, though) in order to gauge their reaction and gather feedback. And for the record, I have plenty of kitchen fails that never get published. I know all it takes is one bad recipe to turn people off… and I don’t want to risk that.
So…. let’s talk easy peasy meal ideas. Having been through surgery and not being able to be as mobile and physically active certainly shaped my meals during the past week. And then it dawned on me, why not share with you guys two of my super lazy, yet nutrient-dense “go-to meals” that are ready in 15 mins or less? Because let’s face it; time is of the essence. So many times we go for the less healthier option simply because we feel we don’t have the time to prep something nutritious. And here I am telling you that”healthy” doesn’t have to be time-consuming or difficult; healthy can and should be easy. It should be effortless. It should be a choice that’s available to us every day.
Let’s talk about the ginormous & very colorful “Buddha Bowl” that’s pictured first on this post. All you need to make & store in advance is a gluten free carb, so you can just warm it up when assembling the meal. The carb will be your bowl base. I just cook the carb choice in low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock, a pinch of sea salt and olive oil. You can also cook the carb in good old water, it’s entirely up to you. When thinking carbs; think brown rice, quinoa, millet or buckwheat. All naturally gluten-free complex carbs that will give you energy and some of them are rich in protein too, like quinoa. I always have some stored in my fridge, just ready to warm up whenever hunger strikes. All you need to think about is: toppings, which ones?
Well, the best part is, you can totally go to town on this one. Or like me, I go with whatever I have in the fridge at that time. This bowl has cucumbers, radishes, carrots, tomatoes (all in raw form). To save on time, I like to slice and dice my veggies in large amounts and also store in my fridge so that I can top these bowls with, or enjoy my hummus with a side of freshly cut veg. I also always have some hard boiled eggs at hand for added protein, and I roasted my beets this time (just to be fancy like that). Cooked and peeled beetroot live in my fridge inside a nice resealable bag for up to 1 week, if not longer. I also love mushrooms because they give meals that “meaty” feel, sans the meat. I like to sauté mine with 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, 1tbsp of tamari sauce & a pinch of garlic or garlic salt.
The other thing I’ve been happily overdosing on is oatmeal. But not just any oats, I love old fashioned rolled oats (GF) with any plant-based milk of your choice. Steel cut oats are also an excellent choice, but I somehow prefer the latter. But don’t just eat plain oats on their own, no, you can’t possibly do that… Think “superfoods”, oats are a superfood vehicle and you can load them up with ALL the goods for a big, heaping bowl of nutritional goodness. A grand slam. I love eating this meal & I also love how I feel after eating it. Like, I did my body good.
How to superfood your oatmeal in 4 easy steps:
- Healthy Fats: I love to add 1 tbsp of nut butter! Almond, hazelnut and sunflower butter are my favorites! They’ll make your oats really creamy and rich.
- Protein: you can beat and throw 1-2 egg whites into your oats as you’re cooking them, it’s a neat little trick to amp up the protein intake. I love to sprinkle my oats with either 1 tbsp of chia or hemp hearts. If using chia, make sure you let them sit for at least 20-30 mins so they absorb the liquid and puff up a bit. P.S. The nut butters we just discussed have protein, too!
- Antioxidants: I love to add 1/2 tbsp of cacao nibs, bee pollen or goji berries to superfood my oats. Goji berries change consistency when soaked in liquid and become quite chewy and nice. They are one of the world’s healthiest foods & I eat them daily.
- Fruit & Fiber: No oatmeal bowl is complete without some fruit! I love to add banana, apples, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and FIGS! That strawberry and fig combo I showcase on the picture has quickly become a favorite. You can also add 1 tbsp of buckwheat and 1 tbsp of organic flax seeds to the oats while they’re cooking.
So I hope you give these two easy meal ideas a go. You can also top the buddha bowl with salmon, chicken or steak. These are meals that are easily customizable and are perfect for those quick, during the week dinners or breakfasts. I also love how oatmeal can be easily taken to work because it’s so portable. My only trick is to bring about 1/4 cup of nut milk or water and add it to the oatmeal when reheating it so that it’s not dry.
Wish you all a happy rest of the week! xx