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Sunday, July 19, 2009

writing about eating clean...

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...while I swill my vino.

fresh and fast

Perhaps a little ironic? Ah well.

Anyway, my latest obsession is Clean Eating magazine. I freaking love it. The recipes are simple, fresh, delicious and healthy. And no, in case you're wondering, they didn't send me free shit to say this (I do get swag, but I plunked down my own $7 (!!!!) to get a copy). I do love it though. After years of reading about fads, trends and movements in food, this just strikes me as SO common sense and relatively sustainable.

Eat things that you can pronounce. Make them yourself. Don't eat too much saturated fat. And don't drink like a fish. I'm doing okay, except for the last one. Ooops. Anyway, love this magazine. There are any number of great foodie publications out there, but this one is actually showcasing a lifestyle that I aspire to embrace. Sadly, I'm a little too lazy and a little too self-indulgent to do so, but hey, I'll definitely make the odd meal inspired by it. The only thing is that I find there are sometimes extra (and unnecessary) steps in recipes, but they are easily streamlined and simplified.

I actually planned this week's entire meal plan around a few recipes in this magazine, so I thought I would share a couple today. This is stuff that you can feel proud to present to anyone, and actually not feel like a tool for eating. It's good, plain and simple. :)

Grilled Chicken in Melon Bowls
pretty and healthy.  kickass.
To me, this is the ultimate 'ladies who lunch' fare. It looks pretty, it's super easy to make and it's surprisingly quite delicious. You can make it a couple of days in advance even, but I do recommend only adding the cashews at the last minute (I added them when I made the salad and they were a little soft and soggy the next day...not inedible, but they could have been better). I made a few modifications from the original recipe, but I liked how mine came out.

2 large canteloupes, washed, scrubbed, cut in half and seeded
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup green beans, chopped
2 oz unsalted, roasted ashews
1 cup orange juice
juice of 1 lime
3 oz fresh blueberries
1 cup greek-style yogourt

1. Scoop out each melon half (the original recipe called for a melon baller, but I just used a spoon). Set aside melon pieces. Drain remaining liquid from melon and keep in reserve. Set aside melon halves and keep chilled until ready for use.
melons before they were balled, hehe

2. Cook chicken (the original recipe had me pre-cut and then sauté the chicken, but I've discovered that the speediest way to get cooked chicken breast is to just use my indoor grill [like a george foreman one] -it's quick, easy and almost no added fat). Cook the chicken however you like, just make sure it's cooked the whole way through. Chop it up. Cool.
fastest way to cook chicken

3. Combine orange juice, lime juice and yogourt in a large bowl. Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Add chicken, beans, melon, cashews and blueberries and toss.
mise en place

4. Divide mixture evenly among the four cateloupe bowls. Enjoy. YUM. Lil Z heartily approved, though I did pick out the cashews before she had her share.
fresh and fast

The next meal we had was this uber simple, but surprisingly tasty stir-fry. Stir-fry is one of those foods that can definitely be a wolf in sheep's clothing....sure, it may seem healthy, but if you fry it in lots of fat, drown it in sugary, sodium-laden sauce and then devour it over white rice....it's really actually not all the healthy. This one is so insanely simple, I must confess to being a little sceptical as to its tastiness potential, but it was really good. I did increase the sauce amounts by a bit, but overall, it's great as is. Super healthy, quick to put together (cooks in 10 minutes once you've done all the prep!) and very tasty. YUM.

Sweet Potato Beef Stir-Fry
yummy dinner stir fry
1 lb steak, sliced into thin strips (I used top sirloin, but flank would be good, as long as you sliced it thin enough)
1 tsp sesame oil
2 T unsweetened apple butter [I didn't have it, so I nipped a little pinch of Z's apple/apricot puree - good substitute, I think!]
baby food....it's not just for babies
2T low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 t red pepper flakes
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 1/2 inch slice fresh ginger, grated/crushed
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into small pieces
1 cup green beans
1 medium onion, thinly sliced

mise en place

1. In a large bowl, mix beef with sesame oil, apple butter, soy sauce, red pepper flakes, garlic and ginger. Set aside.
meat in marinade

2. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a medium pot over high heat. Add sweet potato, cook for 5-7 minutes, until soft but still firm. Drain.
parboiling sweet potatoes

3. Preheat a large skillet over high heat (my "high" heat on my stupid POS stove was a simmer at best. UGH). Once hot, add beef mixture and onion, tossing quickly until done, about 3 minutes.
i hate my effing stove

4. Add sweet potatoes and beans, cook 2-3 more minutes, then serve.

my dinner

Easy peasy. That's it. Lil Z was also a fan of this one, as was hubs...it's not the best thing I've ever made, but considering how healthy it is, I would make it again. It's surprisingly tasty and flavourful, and the marinated beef was most certainly the highlight. :)

10 comments:

Bambie said...

They both sound delicious!! I will most certainly be making these.

Morgan said...

I love the Eat Clean cookbook - I will have to search out the mag next time I am out!

Beautiful and delish looking recipes....I want to try the stir fry this week!

Jenny said...

Yummy. I'm especially craving that stirfry now! I have done a similar one before and it was delish. I'll have to check out "Eating Clean" down the road. These days I'm not feeling too inspired in the meal department...dommage :(

flanger said...

I'm sure by now you're read "In Defense Of Food", but in case you missed it...read "In Defense Of Food". It made me laugh out loud and then eat better - all from this one book about clean eating.

Finsmom said...

I am in love with this mag as well!

Ive made the stirfry, and think it is incredible!

Jen said...

I love the idea of "Eating Clean" and have been doing it for about 2 months now. I've never felt better and the food is awesome! Those recipes both sound tasty.

Sublim design och Blossom kitchen said...

lovely blogg you have:)It´s always fun with new mags.Thanx for sharing your recepies:)will try some out!
/S

Jen said...

So glad to see updates, Leslie! Just love your blog!

I pick up Clean Eating now and again too - a few months back they had some great recipes with quinoa, probably one of the most underrated grains (if you consider it a grain!) out there.

Katy said...

Great timing -- I just found you through the #SOS Twitter chat, and I also started Clean Eating about 5 months ago!

It just makes sense ... and it's a whole lot more simple. I love the egg white omelets for breakfast -- I trade that off with oatmeal and fresh fruit.

Melissa said...

You have such a great blog! I have a little something for you over at my blog at http://99percentcacao.blogspot.com/2009/08/thank-you-kris.html

:)

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