Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Healthy Lunch

Healthy Lunch - Build a 6 Layer Bento.

Layer One: Grains

The sky’s the limit here: Cooked quinoa (technically a seed, not a grain; but whatever), farro, bulgur wheat, spelt, and rice are all great options. This layer goes in first, acting as a bed for the rest of the ingredients. Be sure to season them with S&P.

Layer Two: Seasonal Vegetable

On the weekend, roast a big batch of whatever’s in season. You’ll be thankful for those root veggies (in the winter) or asparagus, eggplant, and pepper (in the spring and summer) throughout the week. When it’s time to pack lunch, just grab a few from the fridge and layer them in.

Layer Three: Leafy Green

Kale may get all the attention, but spinach, collard greens, dandelion greens, bok choy, and chard are all great, too. Consider cooking them by steaming or giving them a quick sauté; it makes them easier to digest (not to mention, adds flavor).

Layer Four: Protein

Whether you go vegetarian think eggs, beans, tofu, tempeh or meaty, with options like shredded chicken or leftover sliced steak, your bento needs protein. It’ll keep you fuller longer, making that 3 p.m. trip to the vending machine a thing of the past. 

Layer Five: Sour/Acidic Hit

This is where the flavor happens! Lemon juice, a vinegary dressing, kimchi, yogurt, miss these are all awesome ways to make your grain bowl taste outta this world.

Layer Six: Healthy Fats

          You officially have a pass to eat some fat. Whether that’s in the form of your salad dressing (EVOO or a nut-based oil), avocado, or nuts and seeds, a little fat goes a long way, adding flavor and substance. Says Kumai, they’re also great for strong and glowing hair, skin, and nails.

Barley and raw veg power salad.

  • 150g (2/3 cup) pearl barley
  •  2 oranges, peeled
  •  1 lemon, rind finely grated, juiced
  •  1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  •  2 teaspoons maple syrup
  •  250g cauliflower florets
  •  1 small zucchini, finely chopped
  •  2 celery sticks, thinly sliced
  •  2 green shallots, thinly sliced
  •  280g mixed carrots, peeled, coarsely grated
  •  50g (1/3 cup) dried cranberries
  •  1/2 cup fresh mint (firmly packed), chopped
  •  1/2 cup fresh coriander leaves (firmly packed), chopped
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
  • 200g Lemnos Reduced Fat Fetta, quartered
  • Extra virgin olive oil, extra, to drizzle
  • Fresh mint, extra, to serve
  • Coriander leaves, extra, to serve

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