March ...clean & green food month

For March our foodie focus has been on cleaner, greener eating. In general, we do try for a healthy diet and way of living. So this has mostly been about tweaking some things, cutting back/out some things... like carbohydrates and refined sugar. I feel better, brighter for less carbs, less sugar, eating more vegetarian.

Above is a SUPER Green Salad with mixed greens, chopped parsley, julienned sugar snap pea pods, green peas, spring onions, thinly sliced radishes, avocado and soft goat cheese, and sprinkled with a super mix of pumpkin, sunflower, flax and sesame seeds. Homemade pickled red onions and pickled beets make nice extras on the salad.

Some inspiration sources for meals this month have been these two books, which I borrowed from the library. Midtlivs dietten... I read this in the Norwegian translation, but in English this is The Midlife Kitchen: health-boosting recipes for midlife and beyond by Mimi Spencer and Sam Rice.

The other book Grønne måltider by Therese Elgquist has a reference to an English title as The New Green Salad, but I think this is actually a Swedish book with an English title. :/ 

Reading the Midlife Kitchen got me to thinking about how my way of eating hasn't changed much since I was 25. I'm 45 now. And I feel my body is telling me I need a different way of eating from now on and forward. While my weight hasn't changed a lot, yet, how the weight is sitting on my body is. As we grow older, for us women, it is common for us to carry a bit more around the waist/hip/thigh area. I'm beginning to discover this for myself, and it's a bit frustrating at times. Some days I wonder where my metabolism went!? We neither of us are getting younger, and with family health histories, we're trying to implement some healthier patterns now that we can carry ahead as we age. It's quite a lot to think about! :/

So on to some dishes inspired by recent reading in the books above, and elsewhere...

Spicy Black Bean Burgers with Rice and Hijuki Salad... the salad is made of julienned cucumber, carrots, spring onions, sugar snap pea pods and sprinkled with slivers of sushi nori and cashews, served with a Thai-style peanut sauce.

Mexican/Cuban-inspired Black Beans with Fried Eggs, Corn Tortillas, Smoky Chipotle Salsa and Chili-spiked sour cream...

Crisp Vegetable Rosti made with carrots, courgette/zuchinni and potato alongside a fresh and fragrant raw fennel carpaccio, drizzled with lemon and olive oil, and sprinkled with dried mint from last summer's garden, with some fresh field greens... You'll have to imagine the thin slices of smoked salmon, which didn't make it in the photo because I forgot it! Whoops...

Falafel with Hummus in toasted Pita Bread (I didn't make the bread, sadly... still working on learning to bake good flatbreads) served with cucumbers and and colorful coleslaw of shredded cabbage, carrots, sugar snap peas and red beets in a light vinegar & oil-based dressing. 

Raw-ish Pad Thai Salad... all the good elements of a vegetarian Pad Thai--juilenned carrots, sugar snap pea pods, red beets, radishes, spring onions--in the raw, served over cooked rice noodles, cashews, and dressed with a wonderful peanut dressing.

Baked Trout Packets with Fennel and Cherry tomatoes--a splash of white wine over the fennel before closing up the packets and whacking in the oven. Served with Herb-Lemon Couscous and salad greens.

A Moroccan-inspired spicy Chickpea Tagine--with lots of chickpeas, carrots, red peppers, courgette/zucchini, dried apricots, lemon and orange-- sprinkled with dried lemon-mint from our garden last year, and served with Herb Bulgur Wheat.

What food or cuisine to cook during March, then??... Italian... or maybe French?!

So what's been cooking in your kitchen?!


  1. Not only is your food healthy, Tracy, but you also make it look very beautiful, with loads of color and wonderful styling! I like the textures you describe as well. I can't say the beets knock me out but everything else looks really super delicious!

    1. No beets, Jeanie?! I'll be happy to take your portion of those! ;) Funnily enough, I didn't like beets when I was younger, when I was child, but I absolutely love them now... I'd take beets over chocolate even! haha... I did have fun with the photos here. I enjoy taking pictures of food... food, flowers and yarn. ;)

  2. Now I just had my dinner and your pictures make me hungry again. I especially loved seeing the first salad and the Pad Thai salad. They both sound delicious.

    1. Thanks, Marilyn! That big green salad is one we've been eating variations of, and just loving it! I like food with lot of color and texture, so it's been exciting days in the kitchen lately. Also, with spring technically on the calendar, I find myself craving lighter food and "summer appetite"... :)

  3. this is wonderful! and so beautiful. you could make your living as a foodie photographer!
    I have been vegetarian for some time you know. but I still ate fish occasionally.
    now for the last two months I've been completely Vegan and I'm finding that I love it.
    both for the animals and for my own health. which with the heart thing and the no thyroid
    (cancer) is doing wonders for me. I have friends who say OH NO! you don't get enough iron. or enough protein. and other things. not true. longevity in people (especially the 7th Day Adventists) have proven as have other medical research now that we eat far more protein than we need! it is fun too really. creating new dishes and experimenting.
    and no animals were harmed when I sit down to eat. LOL! knowing what I know and how I feel now I don't think I could ever go back to just nonchalantly eating any meat.
    the peanut sauce is WONDERFUL! I've only made my own once but oh my. lovely!
    there are lots of companies now catering to the taste factor of it! and it's so easy to order off Amazon now from all over the world apparently. (though I shop here in town.) still.
    it's nice to have that "right to your door" option I guess!
    seriously. your pictures are beautiful.

    1. Thanks so much, Tammy! :) I do have great fun making and photographing the food. In the background when most of these pics were taken, is TJ hurrying me along so we can sit down and eat. haha! Just a little behind the scenes... ;) I applaud and admire your vegetarian way of life--and now VEGAN too! I can be hard getting the iron and other mineral balances right. I think if I hadn't struggled myself with all that I'd still be veggie. Eating meat occasionally has helped me, but I don't like that. I try to say a prayer of thanks to the animal who helps me live stronger. It's not easy, as my natural mode of being feels vegetarian. And so we try to eat/live mostly veggie here. And we've been having a great time lately trying lots of new vegetarian and salad recipes. LOVE peanut sauce!! While it does require a few ingredients to make a tasty peanut sauce at home, it's very easy to make home. I like it on most anything! ;) Plus, I like to be able to control how much salt, sugar, etc. is in thing. Most ready-made food is too high on the salt and sugar. I'm sooo GLAD you're holding steady in the health department these days, my dear friend! :) OXOX

  4. I think you should open a restaurant. All of these healthy choices looked so yummy. We are busy tweaking our diet too. We are working on more vegetarian meals. We do love fish and Salmon is one of our favorites. Eating less sugar and carbs is the way to go. We are slowly going through withdrawals on some of this. We are improving which is good and getting back to some exercise too.
    I so enjoy our inspiring ideas.
    Sending love and hugs your way! You are the best in so many areas.

    1. Wishing you & Roger the best as you eat more clean and green and sugar-free too, LeAnn! It's not always easy. And as humans, our bodies seem to be wired to crave sweet things, so the less/no-sugar is tough sometimes. But small changes always are better than no changes, right?! ;)

  5. I saw this post some time ago but haven't had a chance to comment and say how impressed I am at your creativity and efforts to meet your goals. Everything looks so lovingly prepared.

    1. Thanks so much, Anne! I think there's some things plated up there that you might like too! :)


Post a Comment