We often hear that eating healthy, fresh foods is too expensive and that it’s much cheaper and easier to pick up fast food on the way home then to make a meal at home.
One of my goals is to dispel this myth. Eating healthy doesn’t mean slaving away at the stove or breaking the bank. What it does take is some planning ahead, a little creativity and a love for great food.
The next time I make a stir-fry I’ll be reviewing a wok set sent to me by CSN Stores. CSN Stores has everything from dishes to dining room tables. Look for the review and a new stir-fry recipe coming soon!
Here is a meal that is well-balanced, comes together quickly, tastes great and costs $10.20 for four servings! ($2.55/person)
Even better? The pasta and vegetables were organic and the beef passes the Whole Foods Meat Quality Standards.
Money-Saving Tip: Add frozen veggies to your grocery list! They won’t go bad, they are often cheaper and have just as many nutrients as fresh ones!
Beef & Vegetable Noodle Stir-Fry – 4 servings
- 4 oz whole-grain spaghetti
- 16 oz bag of frozen Chinese Stir Fry Vegetables
- 8 oz skirt steak
- 3 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp sriracha (if desired)
Prepare the pasta as directed.
Heat large pan over medium heat. Coat with cooking spray. Add steak to pan and season with salt & pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a cutting board to rest.
Meanwhile prepare the sauce. Mix together soy sauce, sesame oil and sriracha.
Add the frozen vegetables to pan and saute for about 6 minutes, until cooked through.
Turn off heat and add pasta and sauce to pan. Toss to combine. Slice steak into thin slices and serve over pasta.
…on a plate. I haven’t had a ton of experience with Korean food, especially after a very unfortunate experience with kim chi. (This may also explain my lack of a decent-sized bowl that would actually contain all of this) But after this delicious plate, full of flavor, I can’t wait for more!
While we didn’t follow all of the dining etiquette rules that go along with Korean cuisine, and certainly not the one requiring you to turn down a drink three times before finally accepting it, I remembered what I like about Asian meals – the ability to combine whole grains with vegetables and its use of meat as more of a condiment than a main component.
Korean Rice Bowl with Steak, Vegetables & Fried Egg inspired from Bon Appétit – 2 servings
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbsp ginger, minced
- 1 Tbsp sriracha
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp brown rice vinegar
- 3 Tbsp lime juice
- 8 oz grass-fed sirloin
- 1 bunch asparagus
- 1 large carrot, sliced into matchstick pieces
- 1/2 red pepper, sliced into matchstick pieces
- 2 organic eggs
- 2 cups cooked brown rice
- 3 green onions, sliced
- Sauce: 2 Tbsp soy sauce, 1 Tbsp sriracha
- Combine garlic, ginger, soy sauce, rice vinegar, lime juice and sriracha. Add steak and marinate for at least 30 minutes. Grill steak for about 3-4 minutes per side and let rest for 5-10 minutes. Thinly slice and set aside.
- Cut asparagus into 2 inch pieces and saute in pan for about 4 minutes. Set aside.
- Spray pan with cooking spray and add eggs to pan. Cook until whites are set, but yolks are runny, about 3-4 minutes.
- Top rice with vegetables, meat and egg and sprinkle with sauce, green onions and sesame seeds.
Do you have any other Korean food recommendations for me?
Filed under eating local, eggs, gluten-free, great meals, in season, protein, Recipes, sriracha, Uncategorized, vegetables, whole foods, whole grains
I know, I know, you are probably thinking really? another peanut sauce? But this particular sauce was inspired by a curry peanut dish from Sawatdee, a Thai restaurant in the Twin Cities. I loved the steamed spinach that was served with it – and I’d much rather fill up on spinach than rice!
Made spicy by sriracha, the various flavors of ginger, soy and green onion in this sauce went so well together – I will be making this sauce again -and following the directions so I can get it exactly the same!
- 1 can lite coconut milk
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp sriracha
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1- 5″ long piece of ginger, minced
Add all ingredients to small sauce pan and simmer for at least 20 minutes. (If you simmer longer it will just get thicker and thicker)
- 1 package extra-firm Organic tofu
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp agave
- garlic spray
- red pepper, herbamare, salt & pepper
Cut tofu in half lengthwise. Press under heavy plate so excess water is squeezed out – takes about 20 minutes.
Mix all ingredients in small bowl and toss with tofu. Bake on metal pan at 400° (sprayed with cooking spray) for about 30 minutes or until tofu is crispy.
Serve tofu and coconut peanut sauce over steamed spinach and brown rice. Garnish with sesame seeds if desired.
Do you have a dish that you make over and over but slightly change it each time?
You could wrap anything in lettuce and I’m pretty sure I would love it. My Mother makes the best lettuce wraps – it was a favorite meal of mine growing up – so fun to eat and delicious at the same time. (Also a great way to get your kids to eat some veggies!)
This makes for a great week-night dinner as it comes together fast but is so flavorful and fresh-tasting. It would also be a perfect light dinner for post-Holiday food comas. 😉
thai pork lettuce wraps adapted from Food & Wine’s Thai Ground Pork Salad
- 1 pound ground pork
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 small shallots, minced
- 1 large jalapeño, minced
- juice of 1 lime
- 2 Tbsp Asian fish sauce
- 2 tsp agave
- 2 tsp sriracha
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
- 1/2 cup mint, chopped
- 1 head Bibb lettuce
- 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced
1. Mix the pork, garlic, shallots and jalapeño together. In a small bowl, whisk the lime juice, fish sauce, brown sugar and sriracha.
2. In a skillet, heat the oil. Add the pork mixture and cook over high heat, stirring to break up the meat, until no pink remains, 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in lime juice mixture. Let stand for 5 minutes. Stir in herbs and season with salt and pepper. Serve with lettuce, peppers and cucumber slices for wrapping. (and some sriracha on the side if desired)
Bun mi, eat mi, love mi. If Bun Mi is any indication of what a Subway tastes like in Vietnam – I’m there. This was a sandwich packed with so many flavors and so far from the turkey subs that I am used to. And quite frankly, I’m not sure I could ever go back. Why bother? Yes, I suppose it is higher in calories than a plain turkey but there are times (most of the time in my world) when calories are just not important. Wait, am I allowed to say that? Let me rephrase: there are times when calories should not be the end all be all when delicious food is on the line. 😉
What is a bánh mì you may ask? According to Wikipedia: a Vietnamese baguette made up of thinly sliced pickled carrots and daikon, cucumbers, cilantro, chili peppers, pate, mayonaise and various meat or tofu fillings
I had read about this restaurant in the Mpls St Paul Magazine and it just so happens to be on the U of M campus, which I like to visit and pretend I’m still in college…. ahh….the good life…for me. Not my Dad. They recommended the Bun Mi Special which is BBQ pork and “specialty eggs”. Specialty eggs for the record are essentially scrambled eggs in some special seasonings. Not from crazy birds like I had suspected. Silly mi. This was amazing. In fact, it might just be the greatest sandwich I’ve ever had. Grilled pork, eggs, cilantro, jalapeno, carrots, cucumbers, etc……and sriracha on the side?
The other sandwich? I just wasn’t that into it. It was the “Vietnamese Classic” though so I did want to give it a try: BBQ pork, pork roll and pate. Pork roll? Pressed, steamed and sliced into little spam-looking pieces. The taster did enjoy it though and was sweet enough to trade me halves. I will stick with the “Bun Mi” Special from now on.
After loving white beans in my Rustic Herb Dip and as an addition to Butternut Squash Soup I knew that garbanzo beans (my prior favorite) were in a bit of trouble. I won’t give up on them quite yet but I do want to incorporate their white cousin into my cooking more often. They are creamy beyond belief and my new favorite of the bean family.
Adding them to sausage and tomatoes seemed like a no-brainer, not to mention a quick weeknight meal that would not only be satisfying but healthy. (think protein and fiber)
Saute 1 white onion, chopped in large skillet with 4 cloves garlic, minced. Add sliced sausage (I had 3) and cook until lightly browned. Add in can of diced tomatoes, can of white beans and some spinach (I used 1/2 bag of frozen) and let simmer away for 5-10 minutes. Oh, also add random squirts of sriracha if desired. And if you are like me, add more to your bowl so your mouth is burning. 🙂 Grate some fresh parmesan cheese over top if you wish.
Since I don’t post everything I eat and it may at times seem like all I eat is cheese and pasta and drink red wine 😉 I thought I would show you a day of typical eating for me:
Breakfast: I am a total egg person – it seems that they are the only thing that keeps me from starving at 9AM. I usually have 2 Organic Eggs, greens and some Sprouted Bread. (with a side of sriracha)
Snack: favorite of the moment, apple and almond butter – glamourous on a paper towel, no?
Salad from the salad bar
leftover sweet potato, spinach and chorizo soup
side of veggies
Snack: my kind of candy bar 🙂
Dinner: Pick one of these.