Posts filed under cook once eat twice

Cook Once, Eat Twice! Sweet Potato

Fast, healthy meals are like math. Base (grain or starch) + vegetables + protein + seasonings = a balanced, tasty meal. Even the FDA’s My Plate is a piechart! And despite my dark mathematical past, I’ve got this formula down pat. Because preparedness is ananswer to the problem of staying healthy throughout a hectic week, consider cooking once and eating twice your solution. Get it?! Hehe

Before we dive into the recipes, let’s get down to sweet potato basics. While searching through the pile of potatoes, look for ones with minimal spots, gashes, etc. In addition, select ones that are around the same size. This makes baking easier since they will all have the same cook-time. And if you have the choice…

Buy ‘em organic! Sweet spuds are on the Dirty Dozen list as a highly chemical-sprayed food. If you need further convincing to shell out the extra 60 cents, check out this girl’s science project video. This is also important because you should…

Eat the skin! There is a ton of nutrition loaded in the skin along with fiber that keeps you full. It also prevents blood sugar spikes by slowing down the entrance of glucose into your bloodstream. Eating the whole food in place of just part is a best practice in general. Think rice; brown is better because it’s the whole grain, and white is the grain stripped of it’s germ- aka nutritional rip off!

Cleaning & baking basics:

-Preheat your oven to 375 degrees
-Scrub well and dig out any dodgy spots with the end of a peeler or knife. I usually slice the tips off too.
-Give them some deep pokes with a fork
-Place in a baking dish, on a cookie sheet, or straight up on the oven racks. I personally place them on the racks and slide a piece of foil on the rack below to catch any droppings.
-Bake for 45 min then check them by sticking with a fork. Depending on size and your preference of consistency,  take out or leave in for 15 min intervals, checking as-needed.

So how can you eat thee? Let me count the ways..

1.) My all time fave… the stuffed sweet pot! Load ‘em up with veggies and vary flavor profiles for endless possibilities. From left to right: colorful cabbage, carrots, and  kale with garlic, ginger and bragg liquid aminos (GF soy sauce alternative), spicy black beans, broccoli, & feta, and spinach, mushroom, and onion! Get creative!

2.) Sliced and sautéed 2 ways: the left picture is a sweet version that was browned in a little REAL butter, drizzled with honey, and sprinkled with cinnamon. The other an easy home-fry alternative to your breakfast plate!

3.)  Keep it naked as a compliment to a lighter meal or true on-the-go style by eating the whole potato as is! Wrap it up and throw it in your bag for a satisfying snack any time!

4.) Chopped up and added to greens! On the right it’s a warm dish with kale, and on the left it’s added to a hearty salad! Sweet potatoes add color which means added nutrients. Strive for as many colors as possible to get a wide spectrum of nutrition at every meal!

If you follow me on social media, you well know by now that sweet potatoes are a mainstay in my diet. Even though they are on their way out seasonally, we did just have a frost here in NYC so I’m hoping they’re still relative… at least for a little longer. I encourage you to bake a few and see how you can use them throughout the week when you’re short on time and in need of a healthy meal!

Enjoy!

Posted on March 12, 2015 and filed under cook once eat twice, dinner, lunch.

Cook Once, Eat Twice! {Topping/Filling edition}

The secret to a healthy diet is truly getting into the kitchen and cooking for yourself. When you control the ingredients and are apart of the creation process, not only do you LEARN a lot, but also feel so much more pleasure and satisfaction from the act of eating- which helps you stop when you’re full. Sometimes scarfing down takeout  leaves you feeling jipped so hell yeah you’re going to go for seconds or even polish it all off!

So let’s talk about an easy method that helps us when we are super busy or just starting out in the kitchen; cooking once and eating twice. I do this quite a bit so let’s make this a series. Leave me your cook once, eat twice recipes, ideas, and questions in the comments below!

Cook once: Spinach, onion, mushroom, garlic mix
1 bag baby spinach
1 medium yellow onion
4-5 baby bella mushrooms
4 cloves of garlic- hey, it’s cold season
2 Tbsp. olive oil
salt and pep

It’s as easy as: chop, sauté, season, and use. Heat up a large pan (or wok) over medium heat and add in 1 Tbsp. olive oil and your chopped onion. Once they look a bit translucent, add in the shrooms and garlic. Then handful by handful, add in as much baby spinach at a time as it wilts down until the whole bag is in. Remove from heat and dress with the other Tbsp. olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Eat twice: for lunch I used this to stuff my baked sweet potato and it was SO good! Healthy, filling,and absolutely delicious. Because we kept the seasoning so neutral you can flavor the mixture to fit whatever dish you’re using it in. I kept it as-is for this one.

For dinner I baked a spaghetti squash and added my mixture to the sauce not only to just add more veggies, but a whole lot of flavor! To this I dashed in oregano and a little parmesan cheese! YUM. This is a great example of ‘sneaking’ greens or extra veggies into meals that don’t usually have them.

You could even eat this mix alone, as a side dish, in an omelet, mix into a bowl of rice or quinoa… possibilities are endless.

Cooking healthy doesn’t mean re-learning the craft along with a slew of new recipes, it just means getting creative and intentional about adding in more nutritionally dense foods to your meals. You got this!

Please let me know how YOU cook and eat twice or any tips that could help us all stay healthy on the go!