When I plan my week’s menu (nerdalert!!) I usually flit from cookbook to cookbook and it really takes a lot longer than it should, so I am trying something new. I am just focussing on recipes from Appetite for Reduction. I really love this cookbook. Written by the incredibly talented (and very humorous) Isa Chandra Moscovitz, she has created incredibly tasty recipes that fit the remit I like. Very high in nutrition, but no strange ingredients and low in calories. I am becoming more and more interested in eating raw food. I have been going nuts on my green smoothies as per usual and started with the green juices too. I am astounded to see Seb heading this way too. He always says he’s a vegan that hates vegetables, but I completely disagree. He loves big salads these days and he has even started making his own vegetable juices (this will be a huge shock to anyone that knows him).
Basically, we cannot get enough of salads, but they have to be substancial and Day 1’s fits the bill perfectly. Masses of Romaine salad, kidney beans (the recipe said blackbeans, but there seems to be a national shortage of blackbeans here in Indo), gucamame (guacamole with edamame), salsa, cornchips and coriander.
Day 1: Big Fat Taco Salad.
Today, a few people from work who had expressed interest in eating more plant-based foods came around my house to cook. The focus was to cook food that could be cooked in bulk and used over a period of a few days (good for after work),was extremely high in nutrients but also low in calories. It also needed to be food that was readily available in Jakarta (no vegan mayonaise for example) and inexpensive and without needing fancy equipment.
With all that in mind I decided on the following dishes, ones that I have tried and tested many times and I knew were fabulous.
Carrot and ginger soup
Scrambled tofu with wilted arugula
Thai style coleslaw
Banana ice cream.
I decided to do the cooking lesson a little bit differently because it was the first time doing it in this space and also it was a bigger group. We just broke off in to pairs, I gave them the recipes and I just sort of drifted giving some advice, but these ladies were awesome! They already had loads of cooking skills. We spent lots of time just chatting especially over a long and lovely lunch and chopping onions! It was so wonderful to share nourishing healthy foods and also introduce a few gadgets and new ingredients to such a wonderfully open-minded group. Marion has kindly posted a lovely entry on her blog about our time together and so did Sam.
This was really the run up to an idea that I have had on my mind over the last few weeks. The idea is to get those people from SWA and JWA who are interested (and anyone else from my network for that matter) to see if they would like to complete a ‘get healthy and / or lose weight 30 day challenge’ in the new year. It could also be a really good intro for those people who would like to give a vegan diet a try.
I know there are lots of people like me out there who look at the start of the year as a time for making great plans and getting excited about awesome possibilities, and for many, a healthier lifestyle is part of that. My idea is to publicize this through my blog and to see if we can get a group of people who might be interested in sharing their journey through perhaps a FB group and a couple of face 2 face meetups over the course of the month; like a cooking class, shopping trip or a dinner out (with healthy options of course). There would be some pre-requsites reading and watching to do before the ‘course’ would start, which would hopefully serve to inspire them further. Having a group of people doing it together is much easier than doing it by themselves. By sharing my idea with my friends that came by today and listening to what they said about the food made me just think that I should DO IT!
Anyway, I am hoping to put this together in the next week or so. There will be a blog post about it soon!
So, here are some pictures of our little cooking session! Pictures courtesy of Marion and Sam!