Salmon with quinoa-grapefruit salad or….I can do this!

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Diet, Diet, Diet, hateful word.  However, this challenge I am doing is nothing like a traditional diet!  I’m not hungry and I get to eat up to 6 times a day!!!  In fact, it’s encouraged.  I have to admit some days I can only eat 5 times.  What in the world kind of diet is this you might ask (and I would too).  It’s from a book called Body for Life and it’s an exercise and eating program.  Yes exercise and you push yourself quite hard.  But I’m a bit of a masochist so I don’t really mind that part.  It’s the sweets part that’s harder for me.  Sweets are limited to one “free” day a week. But I can do this….  Anyway, I had a nice piece of salmon waiting for dinner and I had a grapefruit that I hadn’t eaten yet.  What could I make?

Salmon with quinoa-grapefruit salad of course!  Adapted from the Food network here

  • Peel of a grapefruit
  • sliced ginger (a piece as large as a thumb)
  • olive oil  (3-4 Tb)
  • 1 cup Quinoa

While your quinoa cooks, just like rice 1 cup quinoa, 2 cups water, bring to boil, cover and simmer until water is gone.  Oh, if you get your quinoa from a bulk food section like I do you will want to let it soak in cold water for at least 10 mins and then rinse until the water runs clean.  Otherwise it supposedly leaves a bitter taste.  I’ve never had that happen yet but I always soak and rinse.

Put the olive oil in a small pot and add the grapefruit peel, careful not to get the white pith part, and the sliced ginger.  Bring to just a simmer and turn off the heat.  Let it soak while you prepare everything else.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Separate the grapefruit into segments removing the membrane. You will need at least 3 Tb of juice so make sure that happens as you separate!

Put the Quinoa in a bowl and add chopped scallion (2-3) and chopped cilantro and salt & pepper to taste.

Combine:

  • 3 Tb grapefruit juice
  • 1 Tb rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp agave sweetener (the original recipe says 2 tsp honey)

Whisk together and slowly stream in the oil from the peel/ginger mixture to make a dressing.  I reserved some of the oil mixture to use on some asparagus and on the salmon.  Pour the dressing into the quinoa and mix well. You can add the grapefruit segments to it now, or if you’re like me and have a Jason who doesn’t like grapefruit all that much, add it to your own serving.

I took some asparagus, put it on a cookie sheet covered in foil and brushed some of the peel/ginger oil on it, sprinkled it with salt and put it on the bottom rack of a 400 F oven.  The other rack was 2 down from the top. While the asparagus cooked for about 5 minutes I put the salmon on a foil cookie sheet and poured the remaining oil on the salmon and sprinkled it with about 1 tsp of brown sugar and some salt and pepper.  After the 5 minutes was up, I left the asparagus in the bottom and put the salmon on the 2nd rack.  This cooked for about 10 mins.   Lovely.

It was really delicious. I’m getting the hang of this “clean” eating thing, I probably still don’t have it figured out yet.  But hey, I have one more meal to go tonight!  I’ll leave you with a picture of one of my silly dogs who really wanted, either my attention or a piece of fish!

Fish please.

 

Pumkin Pistachio Protein muffins and a new leaf.

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What is this?  What am I doing adding protein powder to a muffin?!  Is this sacrilege?  Well, yes and no I would say.  I’ve been entering the whole new world (for me) of clean eating.  What does this mean?  It means I’m on a diet….I hate and despise that word….I’m on a new way of life!  that sounds much better and less sacrificial. I’ve posted about having gained weight recently and I just can’t stand it anymore.  I’m in my 40s and I refuse to accept that this is just what happens when you get older.  I don’t believe it.  I’ve seen women my age who look fantastic and I want to join their ranks.  Vain? Ok, you can call me that but why not look as good as you can for as long as you can?  But what about baking?!  and my sweet tooth?  Well I’ve discovered that there are some recipes out there that will fulfill my needs and that I can still play around with.  I found a great blog by someone named Janetha , she has tons of recipes on her blog, mealsandmovesblog.com,  which have the combination of protein, carbs and fats that I’m trying to follow.  I adapted one of her muffin recipes to make the following:

Pumpkin Pistacio Protein muffins

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup ground pistachios
  • 1/2 cup protein powder (I use a whey powder)
  • 3/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 cup pumpkin
  • 2 Tb applesauce
  • 3 TB honey
  • 1 TB baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp powdered ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground clove

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Combine the dry ingredients in one bowl. Whisk the egg whites and add the wet ingredients to them.  Add the wet to the dry and just combine. Grease 12 muffin tins or use silicon. Bake for about 20-25 mins depending on your oven.

Pumpkin, Pistachio, Protein muffins!

How do they taste you might ask?  Well in the middle of a “clean” diet, they are not too bad!  Not super sweet but these were moist, and tasty and definitely hit that sweet spot so I will stay motivated.  I will keep posting on my progress for anyone who is interested.