My food has been a little uninspired lately, as has my photography, but I’m baking and cooking up a storm this weekend so hopefully something more exciting will happen!
First things first, I made it through my first week of work and it was great! I love my new job, my coworkers, the location, the ease of taking MARTA back and forth (although it still takes 1 hour with the bus + train time to go 6 or 7 miles). Plus, I filled up my gas tank one week ago and I’ve only driven 64 miles since then–that feels great. I didn’t get the ball rolling food-wise though, so I spent a few hungry days scrounging around my kitchen for super easy to make meals, which means I ate a lot of pasta and peas–not healthy, but it got the job done, I guess. Thankfully I’ve got my breakfast routine down (normally stone-cut oats with fruit tossed in) and with my super-cooking weekend this weekend, I should get the lunch and dinner parts down.
The other big news is that the poet and I decided to part ways. It’s hard, transitioning to being just friends, and it definitely contributed to my cooking slump this week, but I’m going to be ok. The break was expected and a long time in coming, but that doesn’t make it any easier when it does happen. So now I’m relearning to cook for one, something that’s a lot harder for me in the inspiration department, but that’s why, dear friends, I have this blog! I’m going to have to stay accountable to you, my lovely readers, and I’ll pretend you’re sharing each meal with me. (smile) Today I started with cornmeal blueberry pancakes. Not a bad start, right?
And also, I ate at Straits yesterday, which was a hoot. It’s owned by Ludacris and features pan-Asian cuisine (everything from Chinese to Indian to Thai to who knows what). The veggies options weren’t too bad (I ate the garlic noodle bowl which included fresh tomato, basil, and shitake mushrooms) and the ambiance was fun (very loungey), but it definitely isn’t the most authentic or interesting cuisine in Atlanta. It was, however, a great restuarant for a girls night out. And whew, that lemongrass mojito was strong!
So now on to the recipe. Again, I bring you another bowl! This one features local sugar snap peas, millet, and Meghan’s Creamy Ginger Dressing. Using the same idea as the Bulgur bowl, I layered the grain (millet) with sautéed sugar snap peas, dry fried tofu, and tossed it all with a delicious, easy to make sauce. I don’t know if I’m sold on millet yet–it has a slightly bitter aftertaste–but it’s definitely an intriguing grain. It’s the 6th most used grain in the world, mostly in China, Japan, Russia, and Africa–is nearly 15% protein and is gluten-free. I’m definitely going to play around with it more, as you’ll see in future posts!
Sugar Snap Peas & Millet Bowl
For the sugar snap peas and millet:
adapted from Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites
1 c millet
2 c boiling water
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 c sliced mushrooms
2 c snap peas, the ends snapped and tough rib pulled off
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 lb of firm tofu, dry fried
In a heavy skillet, toast the millet on medium-high, stirring constantly, until it is fragrant and begins to brown, about 3 to 5 minutes. Carefully pour the boiling water into the hot skillet in a thin stream. Add the salt. Cook on low heat for 15 minutes. After the millet is tender, fluff with a fork, cover again, and remove from heat.
Meanwhile, warm the olive oil in another skillet. Add the onion and sauté on medium heat for 5-6 minutes or until translucent. Add the garlic, mushrooms, and salt, cover and cook on medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms release their juices and become tender, approx. 5 minutes. Add the snap peas, cover, and cook for another 2-3 minutes, until they are bright green and just tender. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.
For the sauce:
from Megan Telpner
1 tbsp Tamari
1 tbsp Maple Syrup
1 tbsp Ginger Root, chopped fine or grated
1 clove of garlic, chopped fine or minced
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 tbsp lemon juice
2-3 tbsp water (or as needed)
Put all ingredients into a blender. Blend until combined. Set aside.
Put a scoop of millet in a bowl. Add the snap pea & mushroom mixture. Throw some tofu on top. Pour a little of the sauce over, mix together, and enjoy!