When my allergies are acting up and starting to really go on full throttle, I eat much less. Which is good, seeing as how we've decided to start working out downstairs again. Soon I'll be back on my bike and hitting the riverwalk and thusly downtown with all of its fun little haunts and photo opportunities. But mostly to start getting back into a healthier state.
When I'm unable to eat as much, I prefer to eat as healthily as possible - give or take the few exceptions. Yesterday I made fresh date bread with whole wheat flour, flax seed, and whole grain amaranth. It is very dense and chewy, and was sweetened only with honey and the natural sweetness of the dates. For lunch today I wanted something I would consider easy and comforting, as I've had a bad night with gastrointestinal issues. Whenever I have leftovers, I try to utilize them in my lunches so that there's less opportunity for waste. I went hunting in the fridge for something to build a meal on, and the first thing I found was a little less than a full cup of mushroom gravy from something I'd made before - probably Sewdish meatballs, I don't remember. I had half a package of whole wheat egg noodles, some chicken broth, and whole grain buckwheat - Kasha Varniskes it is!
For those who have little to no idea what I'm talking about, kasha varnishkes is something of a side dish in Jewish cooking. Usually you find it made with bow tie pasta (farfalle), but I prefer regular egg noodles. Something about the nice density of egg noodles just makes me happy. I love them in all kinds of things from soups to baked pastas, and they make really decadent mac & cheese if you like that sort of thing. Kasha
are the kernels of the buckwheat plant, often referred to by the less-than-sexy name 'groats'. Which sounds kind of wrong. It packs a substantial health benefit
, as well as being REALLY good tasting. I found a recipe for kasha varnishkes here
, but I prefer to use the whole kasha as opposed to the milled version she has in the photo. I like the texture of the whole kasha when cooked, it is comparable to brown rice only with a deeper, earthier almost smoky flavor that I adore. It is also cooks up quite tender, unlike the rather chewier brown rice grains. I've also made pilafs with it.
For my version, I mixed the beaten egg and kasha in a dry skillet over medium high heat until the grains were dry and separate, then poured in 2 cups of hot chicken broth, about 2 tablespoons of butter alternative (I like "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" - the light version), some kosher salt, a few grindings of pepper, and covered the skillet. Cranked the heat down to low and left it alone for about 15-20 minutes while I cooked the egg noodles. Once everything was done, I mixed it all together and threw in the mushroom gravy. This time I didn't use an onion as I would have normally, I wanted to keep it simple. From there, I commenced to grubbing out.