Good morning everyone! Erin’s post last week about How To Eat and some of the related comments made me want to share my lunch box with you. I wish you were all here, because this week I steamed enough veggies for everyone!
I’ve always loved vegetables and salad, however, sometimes all that raw roughage is hard on my stomach. Plus, the cold weather makes me crave warm food. So when I saw the kabocha fashionista switched from cold salads to warm salads, I thought “Aha! What a great idea!”
Basically, all I do is buy a bunch of fresh vegetables and spend about 2-3 hours (including clean up time!) on Sunday to chop and steam them. Then I mix them in portable, convenient containers. I leave a few at home for quick dinners and take the rest to work for lunch. Here are a few tips and lots of pictures, in case you want to share my lunch!
1. Get fresh, organic and/or local vegetables whenever possible. You can taste the difference, especially since you’re not covering them in sauce. Also, choose vegetables you actually like! Try to vary in color and texture.
2. Don’t steam the vegetables too long, crispy is better. You’ll be microwaving them later which will continue to cook the vegetables. Soggy veggies are no good.
3. Add quinoa or brown rice to the mix for more texture and as a binder or carb base.
4. Keep nuts, dried fruits and seeds around to throw in after you heat up your vegetables. They add an interesting crunch and flavor.
5. If you get bored add a little black pepper, spices, low fat dressing, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, tamari or anything else you can think of to that meal. I like to add the sauce when I’m eating, rather than when I cook, so I can suit my mood at the time.
6. Mix and match the veggies in each container so there is some variation from meal to meal.
Still not excited about eating steamed vegetables all week? When I feel that way, I remind myself I used to eat a ham and cheese or peanut butter sandwich every day for lunch. Then I would have spaghetti or mac and cheese for dinner most nights. This seems a lot more exciting than that. Not to mention, much healthier!
The most time consuming part of this recipe–and most vegan/vegetarian cooking–is all the chopping. That’s actually my favorite part of cooking. I can just zone in and hack away. Although, I usually make a pretty big mess.
How do you feel about chopping a lot of vegetables? Does this lunch seem too boring for you? Be honest!