#HH30Days Week 3 Recap: Some New Favorites!

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How is everyone doing with the Real Food Challenge??  I hope you are enjoying it and feeling great!  I wanted to share some of my new favorites that have been helping me get through the challenge without feeling like it’s a challenge at all!  It’s really more of a reminder to make good choices and most importantly, to plan ahead.  When I plan ahead, great things happen for my food choices.  When I don’t, well…that’s another story, and it ends sort of sadly.

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Which is why I’m glad to share these ideas with you!  One of my favorite breakfasts, and one that has become my go-to this past week is an almond butter green smoothie.  I use almond milk, almond butter, a ton of spinach, a banana, and a little bit of yogurt for protein.  It’s great because it doesn’t need any added sweetener, plus it keeps me full until lunch.  Ok, let’s be honest, nothing keeps me full until lunch.  But it really does tide me over until snack time, which is still no small feat! 🙂

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Another thing that has helped me a ton is planning ahead and preparing my lunches.  I’m always on the run, so it’s helpful to have something I can just grab from my lunch bag and eat without having to find a microwave.  For that, I bring you…my favorite veggie rice bowls!  I have a mild obsession with peanut butter, so using veggies as a delivery vehicle is a great way to feel good about it.

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I started with some brown rice, then added in a ton of veggies, including cucumbers, bell peppers, radishes, and some leftover grilled asparagus.  I put a big dollop of peanut sauce on top of the rice, then added some cubes of tofu for protein, then added the veggies on top.  It was delicious!  I was actually surprised at how easy they turned out to be, plus how tasty they were!

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These were so easy to grab and go, plus they made me look forward to lunch everyday!

Comment below to let us know how you are doing with the Real Food Challenge!  We would love to see your photos of your meals!  Tag us on instagram!

 

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All About…Radishes!

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Poor radishes are often an afterthought in cooking!  Let’s change that!

Radishes are, to be technical, the bomb.  They add a subtle peppery taste to whatever they are in, plus, they contain a good chunk of vitamin C, vitamin A, and fiber.  They are about one calorie per radish too, and let’s be honest, they’re pretty!

Radishes have been around for quite some time, first seen in New England in the early 1600s, and they are part of the cabbage family, so they are in related to cauliflower, kale, broccoli, and cabbage.  There are a ton of different ways to use them and add them to dishes…let’s look at a few!

One of my favorite breakfasts has to be avocado toast.  I had it at a restaurant once, and they put lemon zest and lemon juice on top.  It was so good!  I added some radishes to up the nutrition profile of my breakfast, and it was quite good, if I do say so myself!

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You can always smash your avocado, or even add some hummus for a bit more protein, but I highly recommend adding the radishes.  They give a nice crunch to the toast, and the little bit of peppery taste is a great contrast to the avocado.

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I used a mandoline to get the thin slices.  Again, always use the hand protector thingamabob.  It’s super useful for keeping all of your fingers right where you want them.

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Not pictured here are the lovely radish greens that are also entirely edible and share the bulb’s peppery taste.  Toss them in a salad or sauté them separately.IMG_2069

Don’t stop there though!  You can roast your radishes with some fresh thyme or rosemary.  Or, you can add them to a salad, or shred them and add them to a cole slaw.  The possibilities are endless!  Comment below and share how you use radishes!

Asparagus, two ways!

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Asparagus for breakfast and lunch?  Yes please!

I’m a big fan of batch cooking.  I like to roast or grill a big bunch of asparagus, then use it throughout the week, if it lasts that long (usually doesn’t, truth be told).  Well, I got a little carried away with it, but it turned into a good thing: asparagus for breakfast and lunch.  It was incredibly easy, which is really a requirement for me, since I tend to go from zero to starving in a very short amount of time, so quick meals really help keep the hanger to a minimum!

I grilled a bunch of asparagus, then made a quick breakfast with an egg on top.  I was tempted to put both the asparagus and egg on avocado toast, but alas, the hanger won out, and I just ate it as pictured 🙂  Still good!

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Wait for it…

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Runny yolk with grated parmesan and asparagus spears!

Then lunchtime rolled around, and I wanted to use the ridiculous amount of leftover asparagus, so I used my veggie peeler and shaved it into these pretty little strips, then tossed it with lemon juice, olive oil, feta, and pine nuts.  I had only grilled the asparagus for a minute or two on each side, so it was still nice and crunchy, and it worked well in the salad.

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All that’s here is 3 stalks of shaved asparagus, a tablespoon each of pine nuts and feta cheese, 2 teaspoons of lemon juice, and a teaspoon of olive oil.  Enjoy!

All About…Spring Garlic!

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Have you ever had spring garlic?  If so, you already know how delicious it is.  If not, let me tell you how delicious it is!!  I’ll start by saying I am absolutely not a morning person.  I basically stay in bed until the absolute last possible second, then rush around to get out of the house on time with coffee and a quick, grab-able breakfast from the fridge that I can eat in the car on my way to work.  It’s always a close call.  HOWEVER!  All of this changed the minute I put spring garlic in my eggs over the weekend.  I now, somehow, manage to drag myself out of bed for the sole purpose of making scrambled eggs before I leave the house.  Now, that’s a total of about 10 minutes, max, but for someone who allows less than a minute at home for breakfast on a typical day, that is quite a feat!  While I could go on and on about how magical this little spring delicacy is, let me first explain what it is.

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If you’ve seen spring garlic, you know that it looks a lot like scallions, aka green onions.  So what exactly is it?  Well, it’s young garlic that has not yet developed a bulb, and it is usually pulled out of the ground early, in spring, if the garlic crops look crowded.  Removing the young garlic plants allows the ones still in the ground to develop into big ole garlic bulbs that we all know and love.   Now, if you are wondering how these differ from garlic scapes, the difference is simply that the spring garlic is the actual garlic plant, whereas scapes are the flowers, essentially, that grow from the actual garlic plant.  Similar tastes, but different things.
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What does spring garlic taste like?  Mmmm, a little bit of heaven, if I’m being honest.  It is a milder flavor than a garlic bulb, but still potent.  I used maybe a tablespoon in my scrambled eggs (though I put more on top because they are so delicious that I want them all!), and the flavor was noticeable but not overwhelming.  I did not feel like I would knock someone over with my garlic breath after eating them, but you know, brush your teeth anyway.
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So why should you eat it?  First of all, as mentioned more than necessary, it is delicious!  Nutritionally, too, spring garlic has all of the health benefits that regular garlic has, but it’s a bit easier to eat raw than regular garlic (see above re: brushing your teeth), and when eaten raw, you get the most health benefits, particularly in the allicin, a compound found in garlic that is thought to have anti-inflammatory properties.  Basically, all signs point to eating more spring garlic!
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How can you enjoy this spring treat?  Well, my favorite way is in my eggs, chopped up and mixed in with scrambled eggs.  I found one tablespoon of chopped spring garlic was perfect for two eggs.
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You could also easily add it to salads or a sandwich or make pesto out of it.  Share your favorite way to eat it below!