Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Special Delivery

Morning!

So, I must take a second to brag about my boyfriend a little.



He had these delivered to the pharmacy yesterday. Aren’t they beautiful? Nothing like a half dozen roses to brighten up day! Not only was this the first time I’ve ever had flowers sent to me at work, but it was also the first time I’ve ever gotten roses. I think I’ll keep him Winking smile.


Anyways..moving on!


One of my favorite bloggers, Caitlin, recently wrote that while she loves sweet and sugary breakfasts (i.e. pancakes or French toast), she always feels better when she starts her day with something a little more nutritious that’s got a punch of protein. I must say that I couldn’t agree with her more. I love pancakes just as much as the next girl, but when I eat eggs in the morning I feel like I get a much healthier start to my day. Lately, sugar has been popping up way too often in my diet and veggie consumption has been far and few between. Yesterday, I decided to incorporate some protein and veggies into my breakfast to kill two birds with one stone and start my day on the right foot.


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One egg, 1/2 cup (or 2 to 3) egg whites, 2 Tbsp. feta cheese, a handful of spinach and about 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms (sautéed in garlic powder and oregano). Served with a slice of multi grain bread to round it out.

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This breakfast filled me right up – always a deciding factor when choosing what to eat in the morning. It was also nice just to switch things up. I’ve been in kind of a breakfast rut lately so this was just what I needed. I think I’ll be recreating this meal many times!

I’ve also been trying to mix things up with my packed lunches. I think I’ve finally gotten tired of the sandwich I’ve been eating almost every day for the last year, so I decided to actually cook something to pack up and take with me all week. I immediately thought of the wild rice salad that my mom made a few months ago, and although I think it’s intended to be a side dish, I figured it would work as the main part of the meal since I always pack a Greek yogurt for protein.

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This wild rice salad has bell peppers, cashews, and green onion mixed in and is tossed with an apple cider vinegar dressing that really makes the dish unique and gives it a huge punch of flavor.

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I portioned it out into a Tupperware and paired it with a carton of yogurt and two clementines.

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And there you have it – my lunch for the next week Smile. My favorite part about this rice is that it can be served warm or cold and it tastes good both ways. Last time I ate it cold, so this time around I’ve been heating it up in the microwave. De-licious.

Since I know I’ll get requests for it, I’m going to go ahead and post the recipe. However, you should know that I didn’t make it up (and neither did my mom). It was ripped out of a magazine months ago, but the woman who published the recipe is named Patricia Cornwell. Here it is!

Wild Rice Salad with Cashews

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked wild rice
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 & 1/2 cups chopped red or green bell pepper (I used red)
  • 3/4 cup cashews, coarsely chopped
  • 2 green onions

Dressing:

  • 3 Tbsp. seasoned rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar (I used apple cider)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. Asian sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (I used two)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Dash of freshly ground pepper

Directions

In a strainer, rinse wild rice under cool running water and then drain well. In a 3-quart saucepan, bring rice and chicken broth to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 45 to 50 minutes or until rice is tender. Drain excess liquid and set rice aside.

In a medium skillet, heat 3 Tbsp. olive oil over medium-high heat. Add peppers and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until tender. Add cashews and green onions. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until nuts begin to brown. Remove from heat. In a large bowl, stir wild rice with bell pepper mixture

For the dressing, combine vinegars, oils, garlic, salt and pepper in a jar or Tupperware with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well. Pour dressing over salad and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Serves 6.

Nutritional information (per serving): Calories: 350 | Fat: 22 g | Carbohydrates: 32 g | Protein: 8 g | Sodium: 840 mg | Fiber: 3 g

Enjoy!

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