Saturday, January 21, 2012

Lunch Ideas

Last summer, I made it a goal to find lunch ideas to bring to work. I hate eating lunch at work. If I am not properly prepared with a good lunch, I'll end up going out for lunch thereby imbibing more calories and spending more money than I really want. So, I set a goal to read cookbooks and find some great ideas.

I'll say it again: I hate eating lunch at work. The staffroom is filthy and the idea of a community microwave is just not good. The microwave is filthy. Why wouldn't you wipe it after you use it? Instead, the food stuff is stuck to the walls of it.  I refuse to put food in there to heat. SO my lunches must be enjoyed cold. Whatever.

Well, I found a lot of ideas and in September (my first month back to work), I had some great lunches. Now it is January, and I am not so enthusiastic about making my lunch. And the produce in the grocery store is not so great. I've really come to the realization that bringing leftovers and laying out a nice table setting is best. I formally ate out of the containers I brought them in.


So my quest for nice lunch arrangements has morphed into better evening meals. All the better! I've found chili is a nice lunch. I tend to make the vegetarian kind of chili and I recently discovered that chopped, roasted red peppers can be delightful in it. Pasta is a great stand-by, should I be pressed for a dinner and a lunch. As is roasted potatoes, beets, carrots and parsnips.

I also make a pumpkin souffle once a week, its low-fat and since I bake it in a pie tin, it seems like a dessert. I cut a piece and bring one everyday. Most weeks.

And I pack my lunch bag with apples and oranges and bananas.

Here is one of the recipes I use, from the website http://happyherbivore.com/2010/11/fat-free-pumpkin-pie/


Pumpkin Pie (Crust-less) Recipe

Servings: 9

Description:

This pie is incredible. It's totally crust-less but still firms up like the real deal so you can cut individual slices without it falling apart. It's like a little tofu miracle. You can use Mori-Nu (any firmness) or silken tofu. The tofu must be the soft kind -- like a pudding... not the firm block kind of tofu.

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup mori-nu tofu, extra firm
  • cups non-dairy milk
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups canned pure pumpkin
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9” shallow glass pie dish, set aside. In a blender or food processor, blend tofu, non-dairy milk, cornstarch and vanilla until smooth, stopping to scrape sides periodically. Add remaining ingredients and blend for about a minute more, until the mixture is uniform and well combined. Pour the mixture into the pie dish and bake for 1 hour. Allow the pie to cool on the counter, away from the hot oven, until room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours.

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