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Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We did a TON this weekend but I still can’t believe it’s already over – they always go so quickly, don’t they?
Ben and I kicked the long holiday weekend off with a homemade sushi partay after the little man went to bed on Wednesday night. Locals – if you want the best, super-fresh sushi-grade salmon and tuna, head to Waterfront. We are never disappointed. I asked them to give me a little wasabi from their sushi counter and it really turned the at-home experience up a notch. Love that zing!
The next day was Thanksgiving, of course! It was just the three of us plus my Mom and Dad this year, so we took the opportunity to play around with the menu a bit and swapped a roasted bird for a smoked one. It poured all day long, and was about 33 degrees, so while the men sat in the garage tending to the smoker and trying to stay warm with bloody’s, the girls (and baby L!) hunkered down inside where it was dry and warm with fresh mimosas by the fire. I lugged my juicer over to my parents and whizzed through four oranges which we topped our flutes off with. Really made a difference flavor wise.
We sipped while watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, of course! Lincoln went ballistic when the Sesame Street float went by. Too cute. ;)
I sort of thought smoking a turkey would take 10+ hours but since it’s lean meat and doesn’t need tenderizing, Ben kept the heat around 350 and Turkey Tom was done in about two and a half hours. It was GORGEOUS!
He had a pan of vegetables underneath the turkey to catch the drippings, which he used to make a turkey jus for drizzling over the meat when it was done. Mind. Melting.
Somehow I ended up on carving dute (never carved a turkey in my life but just pretended it was a big chicken!) under Ben’s watchful eye.
Ta da!!! Honestly I don’t think we’ll ever go back to roasting a bird after this smoked one. It was so tender, just lightly smokey, and seriously THAT. JUS. Just wanted to spoon drink it!
The rest of our Thanksgiving favorites joined the turkey on our plates: Gluten-Free Party Potatoes Deluxe, mashed potatoes (which I made with a whole stick of butter and half & half this year – talk about never going back!) Grandma’s Holiday Salad, 15 Minute Green Beans and Bacon, and of course my Mom’s Sweet Potato Stuffed Apples with Toasted Marshmallows…
Which she burnt to a crisp three times before hitting the “toasted” mark. She was so upset, but every Thanksgiving needs a recipe mishap, right?! Luckily they were easy to scrape off and try again (and again.) ;)
The rest of the day was very low key. We poured wine by the fire (which I never got around to drinking because I feel asleep in front of said fire – epic!)
And snuggling. Snuggling’s my favorite.
Thanksgiving 2015 is in the books (HOW?!)
I am SUCH a cliche and joined the gym the next very day. True story! A nice walk + run put me in a great mindset for entering the weekend and rest of the holidays in a healthy way.
Feasting on my new favorite food combo followed. Check this out – avocado mashed with seasoned salt, lemon juice, and fresh garlic, paired with two eggs, and homemade sweet potato fries. UNREAL! I cannot stop eating this meal – it is such a tasty, healthy feast.
I also made a batch of bone broth on Saturday which turned out so well that I’ll for sure be sharing the recipe with you.
And on Saturday night I had way too much fun catching up with my besties! As in, saw an hour that I haven’t seen since Lincoln was a newborn, because we couldn’t part. They say nothing good happens after midnight, which normally I agree with (#GRANDMA,) but catching up with these girls was worth staying up way past my bedtime!
I will say, a Roasted Beet, Orange, and Pomegranate Power Bowl never sounded so good afterwards!
You guys, if you overindulged this weekend (hello whole stick of butter in the mashed potatoes!) these power bowls are going to save your life! Even if you managed to pump the brakes on eating half a pumpkin pie, these bowls are just what you need to keep healthy habits flowing this holiday season. Eating the rainbow has never been more delicious!
Crisp baby spinach is topped with fluffy quinoa, roasted beets, juicy orange slices, tart pomegranate seeds, and a few crumbles of creamy chevre for a little decadence, then drizzled with a 1 minute (or less) Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette. These bowl are PACKED with good for you ingredients!!
Oranges and spinach are full of vitamins, of course, but they’re also anti-inflammatory foods which are good to be eating especially around the holidays when alcohol and fattier foods are being eaten more regularly. There’s nothing quinoa and pomegranate CAN’T do, nutritionally speaking, and beets are full of healthy fiber and vitamins. Each bite of these power bowls is full of nothing but goodness. I can’t wait for you to dig in!
Start by roasting 1 medium-sized scrubbed beet at 400 degrees for 40 minutes to one hour, or until tender. This is the same method I used for my Avocado and Shortcut Beet Hummus Toast, by the way. I think a lot of people are intimidated by beets. They’re kind of snaggly and dirty looking, plus they’ve got a bad rap like brussels sprouts because of parents or grandparents practically force feeding them to us as kids. BUT, beets are absolutely delicious when roasted. Kind of sweet, and really mild tasting, actually. There’s nothing like them!
Once the beet is roasted and peeled, slice or chop it up. Just LOOK at that gorgeous color. You just know something that beautiful has to be good for you!
Meanwhile cook 1/2 cup quinoa that’s been rinsed very well in a fine-mesh sieve in 3/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons gluten-free chicken broth then let it cool. You can roast the beets and make the quinoa ahead of time, by the way.
Next, de-seed 1 pomegranate, which is easier than you may think. Pomegranates can be found at almost every regular grocery store these days in the produce section. Look for pomegranates that are heavy for their size, smooth, and wrinkle-free. Once you’ve got it home, get a big bowl of cold water ready then score an “X” into the top of the pomegranate with a sharp knife.
Next, use your thumbs to pry apart the quarters. This is method to opening a pomegranate which produces the least amount of spilled juice (like, none!)
Plunge each quarter under water then use your fingers to pop the seeds out of their resting places. When you’re all done, scoop out the pith then rinse and drain the seeds a few times.
Presto – pomegranate seeds! You’ll have way more than you’ll need for this salad, so keep them on hand in the fridge to snack on, top yogurts, oatmeal, blend into smoothies, etc.
Last step is to segment 1 orange. Just slice off the top and bottom then slice the peel off following the curve of the fruit. Slice between the segments and they’ll pop right out!
Save the orange juice then combine it with balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper to create a luscious, sweet-tart dressing, then divide the ingredients between two bowls, add a sprinkling of chevre (goat cheese,) drizzle with dressing, and dig in. Enjoy, enjoy, and have a great week!
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Roasted Beet, Orange, and Pomegranate Power Bowls
Roasted Beet, Orange, and Pomegranate Power Bowls will power you through your day. Packed with vibrant, good-for-you ingredients!
- 1 medium-sized beet (about the size of a baseball,) scrubbed
- 1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
- 3/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons chicken broth
- 4 cups baby spinach
- 1 orange, segmented
- 1 pomegranate, seeded
- 3oz chevre
- For the Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette:
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons fresh orange juice
- 1 teaspoon honey
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees then line a baking sheet with foil. Place beet inside another piece of foil then seal and place on baking sheet. Bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour, or until a knife inserted into the center of the beet meets little resistance, but is not mushy. Once cool enough to handle, use a paper towel to help peel off the skin (should be fairly easy,) then slice. Can be done ahead of time.
- Meanwhile, bring chicken broth to a boil in a small saucepan then add rinsed quinoa. Place a lid on top then reduce heat to a simmer and cook until quinoa has absorbed all the broth, about 15 minutes. Let rest off the heat for 5 minutes then remove lid and fluff with a fork, and then cool. Can be done ahead of time.
- Divide spinach and quinoa between two bowls then top with beets, oranges, pomegranate seeds, and chevre. Combine ingredients for the Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette in a mason jar then shake to combine and drizzle over bowls.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.