Thursday, January 2, 2014

Love and Caprese

The theme of this little blog is eating what you love and loving what you eat. I have two basic methods I use to decide what to eat for dinner. What do I want to eat and what have I eaten already today?

I read Bethenny Frankel’s book “Naturally Thin” a few years ago and one of the rules she created was “You can have it all, just not all at once”. I think this sums it up well. Portions are so key. Some foods, such as fresh vegetables, can and should be eaten in huge amounts. However, if you really want to eat something like cheesy tortellini with a lot of parmesan cheese (like I do), eat it and add some veggies! Enjoy every bite and don’t make yourself feel guilty. The less you listen to the voice in your head making you feel bad, the more you can enjoy what you are eating without that feeling like you can’t stop. You CAN have it all, just not all at once. 
The second thing to take from this is BALANCE. Steve (that wonderful boyfriend I mentioned before) makes fun of me for the way I eat sometimes, because at the end of the day, I am studying to become a dietitian and I don’t always eat the healthiest foods. However, the reason I consider the way I eat healthy is because I balance my food. I try to have fresh vegetables, healthy fats and lean proteins in my diet throughout the day. If I want to eat a cheesy quesadilla for dinner, then I am going to eat it. But I also think about what I ate for breakfast and lunch and maybe I’ll decide to start with a salad first, or some grilled vegetables. But if you don't feel like it, then don't force yourself to eat something you don't like or want. Eat that quesadilla and keep it moving. 
Try to remember that no one is perfect. Food is something that we need and nutrients are more important than most of us fully understand. But don’t forget to enjoy the food and love what you are eating because being mentally healthy is just as important as being physically healthy.
With an impending snow storm and an empty fridge, Steve and I ventured to the grocery store to stock up. While in the produce section, I noticed the smell of fresh basil. I see this all the time and wish they sold it in smaller sizes because it seems like a lot of basil. But then I noticed it was less than 3 dollars, so we decided, why not? I have made a caprese salad in the past. I even bought a little bottle of balsamic reduction, but opted out of the basil. It tasted fine, but it wasn't the caprese salad I love so dearly. When you really want something, you have to do it right. The basil did the trick! I also sprinkled a little olive oil. And now we have more to use throughout the week in other random dishes. Now I know you may think that eating a caprese salad for dinner is not a lot..and you are right. I also ate that cheesy tortellini I mentioned earlier (I was craving that too!), some broccoli, mushrooms and ground turkey for dinner. The caprese salad was part of our dinner. 

Back to the caprese...

Start by making a few slices of tomato and fresh mozzarella and stack tomato, mozarella, tomato, mozarella, etc. With the basil, you can grab a few leaves and stack them up. Then you want to roll it up and just slice. The fancy term for this is chiffonade (but who actually cares, right?) I had to take a basic food prep course as a requirement for my degree in which I basically learned how to cook with a lot of butter and how to make some fancy knife cuts. 
Anyway, you can see what I mean in these photos... 
Then sprinkle it over the tomatoes and mozzarella, drizzle a little olive oil and the balsamic reduction. Simple, delicious and a good balance of fresh tomatoes and basil with that yummy mozzarella.

Hope you enjoy! 

Lots of LOVE,


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