Sunday, October 13, 2013

Getting Ready for the Work Week.....

Buddha Dog with heart rocks and succulents.

Getting Ready for the Work Week.....

I admit that I love to putter in my home.  As a child I used to spend hours in my bedroom making "arrangements".  This consisted of creatively and thoughtfully setting up my knick knacks in a way that was pleasing to me.  That childlike love of putting things in a way that is pleasing is still very much with me ---- now I just have much more space and many many more things to arrange!  So many, in fact, that my home is a bit unorganized.  It's usually clean and presentable but fairly unorganized.  Still, I love to have things around me that are pleasing and calming like the Buddha dog, heart rocks that my family has found on various hikes, some rocks from my friend, Laurie, and a couple succulents given to me as gifts.  I have these sitting by the little sink on my kitchen island. 

Sunday mornings are a time I am often at home with no agenda (except the one in my head which is often large and unattainable!).  I often prepare food for the upcoming week.  This is a wonderful form of puttering for me.  I wash, chop, cook, and in between do laundry, write some e-mails, a blog, play scrabble. Some of my friends and family think that we eat extraordinary things all week long but the reality is that we live on a fairly simple diet of green smoothies, grains, beans, fresh fruit, and vegetables.  Every week we eat bowls and bowls of fresh green salads, a stir fry or two, rice and beans, tons of kale and other greens, a soup or stew, nuts and seeds, green soup of the week and seasonal fruit and berries.  It's fairly simple food but there is a wash, chop, fix component that can sometimes be overwhelming on a week night after a long day of work. So Sunday morning puttering is a good time to put some of it together.

Today I prepared things for the upcoming week.  It was easy and took me about an hour.  This will save me lots of time during the week and more importantly there will be food here at home to tempt me rather than following my very hungry gut to some food source outside my home which may not be quite so healthy and organic.

The first thing I did was wash a bunch of lettuce, chop some fresh farmer's market carrots, and a big organic red bell pepper.   I combined all of it into two large gallon zip lock bags in the fridge.  Easy peasy.  Now we have 2 or 3 big salads that simply need some additions.  Our salads usually consist of:

A base of lettuce and other vegetables that keep for a few days once cut

Chopped vegetables that don't keep once they are cut - cucumber, tomatoes, etc

Some sort of bean.  Right now we are loving garbanzo beans.

Some sort of nut or seed - sunflower seed, pumpkin seed, hemp seed, chia

Live food like sprouts (easy to buy at our local Farmer's Markets and even easier to do yourself!)

A healthy fat like avocado or green olives

A simple dressing of flax oil, vinegar, salt, pepper and nutritional yeast

 Here's a sampling of a salad I made for myself the other day.  This is a "meal" salad and consists of all the things I listed above.  It's huge but that was my entire dinner. So Yum!

 Here's the big salad prep I did for the next few days.  A head of romaine chopped, a big bag of mixed greens from the farmer's market, 5 or 6 chopped carrots, and a huge red bell chopped.

And into two big bags it goes.  This photo doesn't do it justice.  It's like the color of Christmas in a bag and there is actually tons and tons of salad here. 

While I was chopping and washing the salad I had a big pot of lentils cooking.  Lentils are full of protein and a fast cook.  I'll use these lentils in a Lentil Shepherd's pie later this week.  They'll keep just fine in the fridge for a couple days before I mix a bunch of lovely tomato and veg into the lentils and cover it with super delicious mashed potatoes.

The lentils cooked and rinsed and ready to sit in the fridge until I use them on Monday or Tuesday.

The other things I got ready were:

Kale and Beans.  I washed and tore 3 huge bunches of kale in preparation for a big stir fry and a kale and bean soup.  I started soaking some lovely beans to add to that kale and bean soup (which will be made in the pressure cooker - quite a quick way to make a big soup for the week).  I'll bag the kale for future use and just be able to pull it out.

When I wash kale my three dogs sit at the kitchen screen door and look at me adoringly.  With their beautiful eyes they are saying, "Please give me the kale stems.  I love you but I really love kale."

I also made a big batch of brown rice in the rice cooker.  We'll use this for "rice bowls" (a stand by meal for us - rice or grain, beans, Annie's spread, avocado, fresh vegetables, kim chi, etc).  We'll also use this for the stir fry tonight.

I believe strongly that I make better food choices if I have food ready to eat and use.  I think one of the ways we stay healthy and strong is to eat as close to home as possible.  Although we do love to eat out at some of the local restaurants that cater to healthy eating, we just eat better if we have some stuff here and ready.  I urge you to consider spending an hour or so in your kitchen getting stuff ready to use for the next few days or week.

1 comment:

  1. Love this post !! I too love having tasty healthy food made up for us during week. The weekend is a great time to get that ready !!