Eating My Way Through

Curried Quinoa and Raita Salad January 30, 2011

Filed under: Lunch,Salad — Nikki Wegner @ 4:28 pm

I cook a lot on Sundays to have ready meals for the week. I try to mix it up, and make things that are healthy, yummy, refrigerate well and that I  won’t get bored with.

So I decided to try something new recently, and cook with curry powder. I know that I am a little late to the party on this one, but it wasn’t something I had ever cooked with before! This recipe called specifically for madras curry powder (found in the Indian food section of my supermarket), which is a bit spicier than regular curry powder, so if you want less heat, feel free to use the regular kind!

To start, you saute some garlic with curry powder in a medium saucepan (make sure you grab one with a lid). Then you add in your quinoa and some water. Bring everything to a boil.

 

Quinoa Boiling

Quinoa Boiling

 

Put the cover on the saucepan, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 16 minutes or until the water is absorbed.

Remove the cooked quinoa from the heat and let it cool completely.

 

Quinoa

Quinoa

 

Once the quinoa is cooled, stir in the mango, green onions and cilantro.

 

Curried Quinoa Salad

Curried Quinoa Salad

 

To make the raita, simply combine cucumber, mint and yogurt in a small bowl. Serve with some spinach for some extra greens!

 

Curried Quinoa and Raita Salad

Curried Quinoa and Raita Salad

This recipe would be great for a light weeknight meal, but I used it for a week of lunches. To make sure it stayed fresh I kept the spinach, quinoa and raita all separate, not combining until lunchtime.

 

Curried Quinoa and Raita Salad (Adapted from Cooking Light)

1 tsp olive oil

2 tsps Madras curry powder

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water

3/4 tsp kosher salt

1 mango, peeled and diced

1/4 cup green onions, thinly sliced

3 tbsp cilantro, fresh and chopped

1/4 cup cucumber, peeled and diced

2 tsp mint, fresh and chopped

1 (6oz) carton plain, non-fat greek yogurt

1 (5oz) package baby spinach

Directions:

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat, add curry and garlic and cook for one minute

Add quinoa and two cups water and bring everything to a boil

Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 16 minutes or until tender and water absorbed

Remove from heat, stir in salt and cool quinoa completely

Add mango, green onions, cilantro to quinoa and toss gently

In a separate small bowl, combine cucumber, mint, yogurt and stir well

Yields 4-6 servings

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New Toy!: Kitchen Aid Mixer January 18, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Nikki Wegner @ 3:13 pm

So this is slightly ridiculous, but I just had to post these pictures of my new KitchenAid mixer from my friend Haley! I seriously have the best friends ever.

I am the Maid of Honor in her wedding this summer, and as her gift to me, which I totally think is unnecessary and over the top but I will take it!, was this mixer. I always joke to people that the mixer is one of the main reasons to get married so you can register for it…and she remembered me saying that…not sure what that says about me, but oh well!

I used it for the first time yesterday to make whole wheat pizza dough, so I will let you know how it turns out.

New mixer!

New mixer!

So cool!

So cool!

 

 

Hot and Sour Soup January 13, 2011

Filed under: Lunch,Soups — Nikki Wegner @ 3:18 pm

With the New Year always comes resolutions. One of mine was to post to the blog more, and so far, I have admittedly been slacking. But you have to start somewhere!

My other resolutions aren’t necessarily super specific, just to recommit to running (I signed up for my first 10-miler in April with my friend Jamie!…eeks) and eating healthy. So to kick-start the new year I have been making a lot of yummy salads and soups to get in some extra veggies.

Soups are great for healthy lunches, as long as you go for broth based soups and avoid the heavy cream! This week I made an easy version of Hot and Sour Soup to bring in to work every day. This is totally a one-pot wonder of a meal, and after some time spent washing and chopping veggies, it is ready in minutes.

Ingredients

Ingredients

To start pour some vegetable broth  in a large stock/soup pot/dutch oven. Add in some rice vinegar, soy sauce and Thai red chili and garlic paste. Look at you, you’ve already made the base of the soup!

Next you just chop up some mushrooms, onions, carrots and bok choy and add everything to the pot. Also open up your cans of bamboo shoots and water chestnuts and drain them, then add these veggies to the pot as well. To add a bit more kick, mince some garlic and grate some ginger to add.

To finish it off I usually add in some cubed tofu (I’ve found the firm variety works the best). Then all you have left to do is bring the soup ingredients to a simmer over medium heat and let cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

 

Hot and Sour Soup

Hot and Sour Soup

 

Once the soup is all done you can eat it right away, or like me, divvy it up into 5 portions for a week’s worth of lunches.

Each time I make this soup it turns out a bit different. Sometimes I have onions, sometimes I don’t. The bok choy was a new addition this last time I made it, and I loved it! This is a great soup for even the pickiest vegetable eater because you can mix and match everything. Also, if you are not a tofu fan, sauteing some chicken and adding it to the soup would also taste great. It’s up to you…cause you really can’t go wrong when it is so good for you and so easy to make!

Hot and Sour Soup

6 cups of vegetable broth (3 standard cans)

2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce

1 tsp Thai chili paste or Asian hot sauce (more if you want it spicier)

2 cups mushrooms (crimini or shiitake), sliced

1 can bamboo shoots

1 can water chestnuts

2 cups bok choy, chopped

1 cup carrots, chopped

1 small sweet onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tsp ginger root, grated

16 oz firm tofu, cut in to cubes

Directions:

Prep all the veggies.

In a large soup pot combine the broth, vinegar, chili paste and soy sauce, and stir until well mixed.

Add in the mushrooms, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, bok choy, carrots, onion, garlic, ginger root  and tofu.

Bring everything to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often.

Yields 5 servings (about 2 cups)