Monday, February 27, 2012

Dinner Last Night-the Wins and the Fails...

image via

I had the urge to cook yesterday. And when that happens, I go with it. I had my recipes all picked out: a Thanksgiving-worthy meatless loaf with mushroom gravy, kale slaw, and split pea soup (I had a craving).

As happens with new recipes, some work and some don't. Well...I had such high hopes for the meatless loaf. It was good but WAY too herby. Like, I would make it again because the overall recipe was good but cut down the herbs by 75% or more. It was just overpowered by an herby taste. I was pretty disappointed because it took a while to make...we still happily ate it, though. And I should add: it is a nutrition powerhouse! Protein for DAYS, and veggies in the loaf...and it is virtually *fat-free!

The split pea soup was amazing and completely satisfied my craving! Considering it is virtually *fat free, it was so flavorful and delicious and the spices were exactly right. (*I sauteed the veggies in veggie broth instead of oil.) See here for some great information on the amazing health benefits of green peas!

The kale slaw was great as always although I need to play around with the dressing a bit- I think it needed a bit more sweetener. I used carrots, regular cabbage, and lacinato kale. Really, you could use any cabbages or kales you have on hand- even broccoli slaw.

The best part is that we now have tons of leftovers for lunches and dinners. I plan to add some beans and other veggies to the kale slaw for lunch today with a bowl of pea soup. I am not sure if it is possible to eat a more healthy or nutritious meal! And believe me: this is good. It satisfies on so many levels.

Overall, my time investment to cook these dishes was about an hour and a half. Not bad, considering that for a smaller family these meals could take you through a couple days easily (my husband is 6'8", and with the 3 kids we tend to go through food fast!) I was able to make all this food while my girls napped and even squeezed in a quick workout.

Cooking food on a Sunday makes for a very happy Monday! Have a great week, everyone (hi, Mom!)


  1. Yay for cooking! Sounds delicious!

    Herbs can be tricky when using someone else's recipe. Herbs have different flavors and intensities of these flavors depending on a lot of variables. How herbs are stored, how fresh they are, where they were grown, how they were dried... etc...

    I've found in a lot of recipes I adjust to my own taste based on my herbs. Taste as you go!

    I also like to replace dried herbs with fresh ones if I have any in the garden. Nothing beats fresh herbs! But here again, the intensity is different! (Typically you use more fresh herbs as the flavor in fresh herbs is less condensed).

    Be careful with those bodyrock videos. There is a lack of attention to safety, healthy alignment, and/or breathing. You risk your joints and back doing some of those moves. For my friends interested in home workouts, I recommend pilates. Here's a good one:

    And of course you know I'm a huge yoga addict! But I do recommend taking a class with a certified instructor with a background in anatomy to learn the basics before you start a home practice.

    All that said, I'm proud of you! Cooking and staying active!

  2. Hi Kat,
    Yes, cooking with herbs is tricky! Overall I have been pleased with most of the recipes I have tried. Although. I did a tempeh recipe the other day that was so gross I couldn't even eat it. Not sure what went wrong! Ha!

    I have to disagree with you on the Bodyrock workouts- they are constantly stressing proper form and to modify any exercises you are unable to complete. They include these modifications and demonstrations of proper form in their videos. Additionally, the exercises such as jump rope, pushups, etc. are pretty standard exercises- the difference with bodyrock and the way most people exercise is the intervals and the intensity in the workout. But I think people who run do more damage to their bodies on a daily basis! But it is really all personal preference. For example, I have tried yoga and while I like certain aspects of it, it just isn't for me. I know more people that have hurt themselves from Yoga, actually!

    I think the main thing is that people need to know their own bodies. My friend just "broke her ass" (pulled a major butt muscle) doing yoga and couldn't walk for days! Although, yoga is great I know. Just trying to show that it isn't the exercise, it is the person doing it. People need to know their own limits and exercise caution.

  3. Tempeh is difficult. I don't know why. I tried it a few times and couldn't get it to be as awesome as had in restaurants (like a dreamy bbq tempeh sandwich!). Maybe there is some trick to it? But good for you for trying it out.

    I 1023% agree that people need to know their bodies and their own limits. Additionally, getting a postural analysis can help you in ways you can't even imagine (I recently found out I have slight scoliosis and hyperlordosis (sway back)!)

    And I also have to admit that I've only watched one video from Bodyrock a year ago and upon that am basing my judgement. Perhaps, and I hope, they have better videos than the one I saw. (Although I must also add I don't appreciate the male gaze in these. Maybe they feel like degrading women is necessary for women so muscular? Like balancing it out? Women shouldn't have muscles so let's have her wear a low cut top and zoom in on her boobs to make up for it?)

    You would be surprised at how many "pretty standard exercises" are actually really dangerous! Funny you bring up pushups because they are a case and point!

    In the video I saw, in addition to too many other mistakes, the pushups were atrocious! I would never ever do them that way myself unless I wanted to get no benefit at all from doing them (they were too fast, without control, and forward tilt of the pelvis) or want to injure my rotator cuffs (hands too wide apart, elbows splayed out, and shoulders dipping way below shoulder level).

    I think things like these are not obvious, no matter how well you know your own body and limitations. Many people don't find out about proper alignment until they injure themselves doing risky workout moves. And unfortunately, poorly informed teachers or trendy workouts are the inspiration for these moves!

    I've been athletic my whole life and only recently have I started seeing how barbaric and non-compassionate my old ways of working out were.

    So yeah, that's why I said just be careful!

    PS. I am so going to try the meatless loaf recipe. I've been wanting to make something like that for a while but couldn't find anything that looked good enough! Yay!