As I sit here sipping my vanilla malt that I ordered “to-go” after finishing my tuna melt & fries, (Yes, I have done that more than once) I thought it would be a really great time to talk about healthy eating. haha.
At this time, I’m still too self-conscious to talk about how I maintain my figure, so to speak, but I have absolutely no trouble talking about food. I fucking love food. A great deal of my world revolves around it. While this can be absolutely wonderful, it can be a double-edged sword situation. Quality problems, what can I say?
My work around is that I try to eat pretty cleanly and avoid carbs during the week (unless there’s a good reason not to-or even a halfway decent reason). However, I’m not super great in the kitchen and I resent all time spent cooking for myself alone, so I try to make things that are healthy, but also very quick to throw together in the evening.
I just wanted to share two of the bigger successes I’ve had in the kitchen recently when cooking for a party of 1.
Zucchini Pasta Bake
In my July 10 post about the Heart of the City Farmers Market, I mentioned that I had picked up some zucchinis. Zucchini pasta/zucchini noodles are all the rage these days. (Side note: Have you all noticed that they’ve started selling shredded cauliflower at the markets for use in making pizza dough, etc.? I’ll have to look into it more, but I’m guessing that you still have to cook it, which still leaves you with having to dry it-the truly difficult part. I can toss my own damn cauliflower in the food processor for the extra money, thanks). I’ve done them a ton since I started with the cleaner eating a while back. I make enough zucchini noodles that I received a veggie spiralizer from my mother for my bridal shower.
Nothing to this one-I simply had some mozzarella balls that needed finishing up, so I bought the zucchini with this dish in mind. You simply “spiralize” the zucchini, which is my favorite part because it creates beautiful green ribbons, toss in some olive oil in a pan to soften slightly, and then dress them however you would any pasta. Seriously, it could not be simpler.
I’ll admit, “spiraling” 4 zucchinis is a little hard for me. I think I have weak wrists. It is most evident when trying to generate torque to turn keys in locks and/or ignitions. Weird. But hey, I get by 🙂
This was my first attempt at baking zucchini noodles. The recipe simply required that I skip the step where I soften the noodles in the pan. Cool-make it easier. Fine by me. I put the raw “noodles” in the baking dish, mixed in sauce and some greek yogurt, and broke up the mozzarella balls for a rustic look. I was imagining trendy pizza when I was arranging the cheese.
The dish came out tasting lovely and looking kinda pretty, if I do say so myself, but word to the wise, zucchini noodles (and spaghetti squash noodles) will always be wet. I either drain the excess moisture or simply ignore it and don’t eat the last few bites. I mean-whatever. It’s like a few more bits of VEGETABLES for God’s sake. Let them sit in their own fluids. Bwahaha!
Tuna Stuffed Peppers
So here’s something super DUPER freaking easy that turned out much better than anticipated. This is a riff on someone else’s recipe, but since it no longer resembles that recipe at all, I’ll just explain what I did. You can always Google how to make a tuna stuffed bell pepper if you’re really curious. You’ll be ok.
So for this one, you stick the bell pepper (I chose orange, but its happy summertime and you have choices in your produce right now, so make them thoughtfully!) in the oven on broil. The pepper gets kind of soft and bubbly.
While that’s goin’ on, you mix your tuna filling. Mine was comprised of (surprise, surprise) tuna, cottage cheese (trust it), chopped olives, red onion, lemon juice, and a quick shot of olive oil. I didn’t measure-nothin’.
When your pepper comes out of the oven you de-seed it and cut it in half, stick the tuna mixture in there and then shove it back in the oven on bake this time. You’re not really cooking anything at this point, just warming through, so keep it in there until it’s warm, yes? Then enjoy.
I hope you are all making the most of this summer produce. I, personally, have been in smoothie mode this past week. Such sweet berries and stone fruit in season right now! You all go eat your fruits and vegetables, ya hear!
Don’t mind me, I’m just finishing slurping down my malt!