Breakfast: A green smoothie of 1 frozen banana, about 1/3-1/2 cup each of frozen strawberries and raspberries, 1/2 scoop of Amazing Grass Green Superfoods powder, 1/2 tsp maca, 1 tbsp chia seeds, 1/2 tbsp hemp seeds, about 1 1/2 cups curly green kale, and 1/2 cup water, accompanied by two brown rice cakes spread with almond butter and tahini.
Brown rice cakes slathered in some variety of nut butter constitute the whole grain/protein aspect of my breakfast when I’ve gobbled up the last of the week’s batch of granola and haven’t had the chance to bake up another couple pan-fuls of crunchy clustery goodness. However, no granola will come out of my dorm kitchen this week because tomorrow, I leave for good ol’ Madison, WI to spend my month-long college winter break in my hometown with my family and high school friends! I wholeheartedly intend not to leave the kitchen for the entire duration of my break (except to practice lots and lots of yoga at Inner Fire) in an attempt to make some sort of dent in my 32-page Word document entitled “Recipes to Try”—anyone who wishes to see me during this time must visit me while standing beside my oven. In keeping with my much-anticipated return to frequent culinary experimentation, I eagerly anticipate a leisurely, blissful grocery shopping spree at one of my absolute favorite destinations in Madison—the Willy Street Co-op—as my first act upon arriving in the city. I can hardly wait!
Breakfast Checklist: Protein—chia seeds, hemp seeds, almond butter, tahini. Whole Grain—brown rice cakes. Fruit—banana, strawberries, raspberries. Leafy Green—curly green kale. “Super Food”—Amazing Grass powder, maca, chia seeds, hemp seeds.
Local Ingredients: None.
Morning Tea: Choice Organic White Peony tea.
Lunch: A salad of mixed greens, cucumbers, celery, green peas, mushrooms, cauliflower, broccoli, chickpeas, yellow carrots, a mix of amaranth and millet, and a sprinkling of dulse flakes, all tossed with a variation on my recipe for Liquid Gold Dressing and topped with sauerkraut.
Lately, I’ve become a fan of cooking various types of grains together in the same batch—why not cut two carrots with one knife and harness the beneficial nutritional profiles of multiple grains at the same time? Obviously, to do so all of the grains included must share the same duration of simmering—for example, both millet and amaranth require about 25 minutes of cooking and thus work well as batch partners, as I’ve done here. Some of my other favorite combinations include millet and quinoa, as well as brown rice and wild rice.
Meal Checklist: Protein—chickpeas. Whole Grain—amaranth, millet. Vegetables—cucumbers, celery, green peas, mushrooms, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots. Leafy Greens—mixed greens, dulse seaweed, sauerkraut, broccoli.
Afternoon Beverage: A bottle of GT’s Organic Raw Kombucha in Original flavor.
Dinner: A Deece dinner of butternut squash soup accompanied by a salad of mixed greens, brown rice, black beans, cauliflower, celery, green beans, and carrots dressed in balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
Though the Deece consistently offers a variety of healthy vegan options, let’s face it—the quality of college dining hall cuisine rarely reaches past slighty better than mediocre, especially compared to the homecooked meals to which I’m quite accustomed to enjoying while in Madison. Luckily though, this constitutes my last Deece meal until mid-January when I return to Vassar for the spring semester. Until then, hello to truly enjoyable, satisfying, Ali-esque food!
Meal Checklist: Protein—black beans. Whole Grain—brown rice. Vegetables—butternut squash, cauliflower, celery, green beans, carrots. Leafy Greens—mixed salad greens.
After-Dinner Beverage: Traditional Medicinals’ Organic Eater’s Digest tea.
I recently spotted this tea at Stimpson’s House of Nutrition and opted to try it instead of my usual after-dinner tea of Ginger Aid. A comforting and intriguingly spiced blend of peppermint, fennel, ginger, rose hip, papaya leaf, alfalfa leaf, and Saigon cinnamon, Eater’s Digest harnesses the powerful digestive properties of each of the aforementioned ingredients. I think this tea may soon become my nighttime beverage of choice!
Comment Provoking Questions: With which foods besides granola do you like to accompany your smoothies? Which grains do you like to combine in one batch? Do you drink anything special after dinner to aid digestion?
Until next time, Ali.