Fast and Tasty Meals
During a recent LYB staff meeting, a colleague asked me what I make for dinner on the days I am too tired to cook something elaborate. I immediately pictured those days following sleepless nights when I dream of getting home, changing into loungewear and just resting. I also thought of the nights when I have cooked my kids’ favorite meal and have no desire to eat it myself. I don’t have the time or the inclination to cook something else, so I turn to these trusty faves. I love that both these meals are simple but sophisticated. They put me in a good mood because they are easy to throw together but they taste like they took much more effort!
Green Grape/Cucumber Gazpacho
4 cucumbers—peeled, seeded and chopped
1 1/2 cups seedless green grapes (9 ounces)
1 small garlic clove
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
1 cup of water
Cooked shrimp and chopped roasted or smoked almonds, for garnish
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Add the garnish of your choosing. This soup is best when cold, so if possible, put it in the refrigerator or the freezer for a bit before serving.
I usually accompany the gazpacho with kalamata olives, a nice loaf of bread (I always keep one in my freezer so I can pop it in the over in a pinch) and some spreadable cheese. If you are vegan like me, or even if you are not, you must try Miyoko’s vegan cheese. It will knock your socks off!
Avocado Toast has become a phenomenon for obvious reasons. It is nourishing, deeply satisfying and super easy to make.
The most basic recipe is toast, sliced avocado slightly mashed into the bread, a few drops of lemon and salt. In her cookbook It’s All Good, Gwyneth Paltrow recommends adding mayo (she actually recommends the vegan mayo Vegenaise) for what she calls the trifecta of bread, mayo and avocado.
Another option is to top the toast, mayo and avocado with Indian black salt. This condiment is especially popular among vegans who miss the taste of egg. Due to it’s high sulfur content, its taste is reminiscent of hard boiled egg. It’s a truly delicious and super easy way to give avocado toast a different taste.
Of course, you can also add an actual egg, whether fried or hard-boiled, sliced tomato, sliced cucumber or anything else that sounds appealing to you.
If you want something more filling, check this out.
I like to pair the avocado toast with kalamata olives and marcona almonds. Both keep well, are easy to grab, and they round out the meal nicely!
If you just can’t be bothered to even toast bread, this is my go-to smoothie. Trying to replace a whole meal with a smoothie means it has to be seriously satisfying! I would also say it needs to be nutritious. Here’s my go-to:
1 handful of spinach
1 banana (mostly added for sweetness. You can also use 2 dates or a drizzle of honey or maple syrup)
1 cup frozen strawberries or blueberries or raspberries
2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds
1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
1.5 cups of milk of choice (I do almond milk) or coconut water
Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.
This may sound a little crazy, but if I am having a smoothie as a meal, I usually follow it up with some popcorn. Its consistency makes me feel like I am eating a full meal and its fiber content fills me up!
What do you make on nights when you don't feel like cooking? Let me know at: Laura@LoveYourBodyBoutique.com