This was the scene outside my front door yesterday.
Most brutal winter in recent memory, especially for those of us trying to train for spring races. Constant onslaught of cold temps, ice, snow storms and wind. It’s been a seemingly unending cycle of misery.
Now, we all know we should be eating our leafy greens. Packed with vitamins and minerals, they truly are superfoods. I love my salads but who wants a meal that leaves me shivering even more than I already am?
This doesn’t mean no greens until spring hits. It simply means do a little planning and fire up the imagination to replace those cold salads.
Thought I’d share a few ideas for sneaking more of those health supporting greens into your daily routine.
1. Homemade Vegetarian Pizza - Who doesn’t love pizza? But it can take some time so yes, I do use a shortcut. I use this spelt crust by the ShaSha Bread Company
and turn it into this
Super quick and easy, I topped this crust with tomato sauce, sauteed mushrooms and spinach, red onion, black olives and a sprinkle of goat cheese. Makes a great meal in about 15 minutes. YUM!
2. Garlic Roasted Broccoli – I can’t believe it took me so long to discover this delicious way to eat broccoli. My kids now eat way more than just 2 or 3 spears. Just wash and pat dry 1-2 heads of broccoli (you don’t want it to be soggy so do dry it). Toss with 2 tbsp olive oil, 2 cloves of minced garlic and sea salt to taste. Roast at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes and watch it disappear.
3. Add greens to your soup – Aside from a nice hot bath, nothing soothes and warms like a steaming bowl of homemade soup. This time of year, I make a big pot at least 2 or 3 times a week. Soup is so nutritious and easy. Don’t you love when you come home and all you have to do is warm it up? Here’s one of my favourite recipes for White Bean Quinoa Kale Soup. I think I’ll whip up a batch later today.
4. Kale Chips - Remember this post? This was when I confessed my struggles in learning to love kale but these kale chips did it. And they’ve been a hit with everyone else I know who’ve tried them. Go ahead, feel free to eat the whole batch. They are addictive indeed. They’re one of those things that taste like a treat with the added bonus of getting all that green nutrition into you. Kale chips rule.
5. Green up your frittata - It’s true, eggs are not just for breakfast. They’re definitely one of my most favourite foods any time of day. Add a bunch of sauteed veggies and you have a complete and nutritious meal. Some of the combinations I love: sweet potatoes, spinach and onions; asparagus, mushrooms and tomatoes; peppers, zucchini, onions and swiss chard.
Play around with whatever you have in your fridge, just don’t forget the greens.
6. Warm Arugula Salad with Grilled Portobellos and Spiced Pecans -
Sometimes I still just want my salad. Adding warm ingredients and spiced nuts is a fabulous way to get rid of the chill. Here’s what you need to make this yummy salad:
- 2 large portobello mushrooms, rinse and pat dry
- 4 cups arugula
- 1/4 cup sliced red onions
- 1 large pear, sliced
- 1-2″ piece of goat cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup maple spiced pecans
Brush portobello mushrooms with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Grill or roast in your oven, 350 degrees, for about 20 minutes.
In the meantime, prepare your dressing:
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- sea salt and pepper to taste
Whisk all ingredients and set aside.
Wash and pat dry arugula leaves. Arrange in a salad bowl with the red onion, sliced pears, goat cheese and spiced nuts.
When the mushrooms are ready, slice and place warm strips over the salad.
Toss with dressing and savour the flavours!