simple & healthy: pesto fish packets

 

I was really glad that one of the outcomes of my little poll was that you are interested in more of the healthy & simple meal ideas.

For many reasons, but partly because it seems that everyone can use more simple meals ideas, and partly because it is challenging for me. I tend to either go overboard and spend hours in the kitchen preparing gourmet meals, or, pop in a frozen dinner from Trader Joe’s. Simple, healthy and quick meals are the inspiration I want to share!

So onto the food.

The packets allow you to cook vegetables and protein in one step and only take a few minutes to put together. I microwaved the sweet potatoes for the sake of time, but you could certainly bake or boil if you prefer.

Pesto Fish Packets with Garlic Butter Sweet Potato Mash

by Emily Dingmann

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20-30 minutes

Keywords: bake entree gluten-free high protein

 

Ingredients (2 servings)

For the Fish

  • 2 small zucchini, sliced
  • 2 filets of firm white fish
  • 2 Tbsp prepared pesto
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • salt & pepper

For the Sweet Potato Mash

  • 2 small sweet potatoes
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1-2 Tbsp butter
  • salt & pepper

Instructions

For the Fish

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

Tear off two sheets of aluminum foil or parchment paper, so you have 12 inches squares.

Stir together lemon juice and pesto.

Layer zucchini on foil, top with fish and drizzle with pesto.

Season with salt and pepper.

Seal packets and place on baking sheet.

Bake for about 20 minutes, until fish is cooked through.

Carefully open pouch and serve.

For the Sweet Potato Mash

Pierce potatoes with fork.

Microwave until soft, about 7 minutes.

Heat butter in small pan and add garlic to pan.

Season with salt and pepper and saute for 2-3 minutes.

Mash sweet potatoes and stir in butter mixture.

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breakfast from the freezer {from home, not the store!}

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I’ve been a little extreme with my breakfast planning.

For some reason, toast every morning no longer works and I’ve been preparing “more exciting” meals ahead of time.

Except I don’t want to be prepping breakfast and lunch every night for the next day.

I want my poached eggs and I want to eat them too!

Ok, poached eggs aren’t really a possibility but I’ve come up with a number of other breakfasts that can be made ahead of time and then frozen so that they can be enjoyed any morning! Breakfasts that come from the freezer, but not the store!

Here is a list of my favorite breakfast items that can be made, frozen and then saved for a later date!

Now I just need more glass tupperware…

Have any ideas to add to the list?

 

top 5 convenience vegetables

 

(source)

There were so many things I learned through the #SNAP4aWeek Challenge, but one was that it is so much easier to fit in vegetables when you can buy them washed and ready to eat. Certainly not all vegetables take a long time to clean or prepare, but having a bag of cleaned greens in the fridge means I have absolutely no reason to not eat them for lunch. Having a bag of baby carrots means I have no reason to eat saltines instead of carrots.

It’s definitely something I take for granted.

Here are my favorite convenience vegetables that make fitting in fresh produce SO easy!

  • washed lettuce, salad mix, greens, etc.
  • baby carrots – I actually prefer to peel and cut my own, and I often do, but if I’m short on time, baby carrots do the trick!
  • frozen vegetables – typically they just need a quick saute (green beans are my favorite)
  • bag of washed  broccoli or cauliflower florets, green beans, etc. – you can steam them in the bag, toss them in oil and roast or saute with other vegetables
  • asparagus – a quick rinse and snap of the ends make asparagus on the speedy side

What convenient vegetables do you rely on?

simple & healthy: stir-fry

Stir-frys are always a great choice for simple and healthy meals that come together in minutes.

In fact, usually the rice takes longer to make than the stir-fry itself. If you are short on time, consider trying frozen brown rice or instant brown rice. (You can also make your own brown rice in large batches and then freeze for later use).

Then gather up all of the vegetables you have, along with some protein and have a flavorful dinner on the table in minutes!

(Beef & Basil Stir-Fry from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything)

Stir-Fry Tips and Steps: 

  1. Prepare rice, grain or pasta if using
  2. Prepare all ingredients (slice, chop, etc) so they are all ready to go
  3. Heat pan and oil in pan (you can flavor oil with garlic and ginger)
  4. Add ingredients by length of cooking time, adding ingredients that take longest first*
  5. Add sauce (can be as simple as a splash of soy, fish sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, etc.)
  6. Serve immediately

*If your stir-fry includes meat or seafood, consider cooking the meat, removing from pan and then cooking the vegetables so you don’t over cook your meat

Stir-Fry Recipes to Try:

Shrimp & Snow Pea Stir-Fry 

Sauteed Baby Squash with Basil & Feta

Chicken & Leek Stir-Fry

Spicy Asparagus-Tempeh Stir-Fry

Brown Rise Stir-Fry with Kimchi, Pork & Tofu

Grace Young’s Best Stir-Fry Tips