Sunday, March 2, 2014

I'm baaaaack. Finally.

I'm sticking with my solid D+ for 2014 so far, as February was of similar ilk to January, only one less death. But I have adjusted my brain that MARCH WILL BE NOTHING BUT AWESOMENESS. So far, I give it a C+. But I digress. 

Because I'm still a wee bit addled from this month*, going to begin a series called "My Lunches This Week" where every Sunday(-ish), I'll post what I'll be eating for lunch in the coming week.

So.......<drum roll please>........<fitting since the Oscars are tonight, eh?>..........

The award for Jen's Lunch This Week is........

Creamy Polenta with Tomato Ragout. 

I so fancy. 

Because I'm really, truly *not* fancy, I buy organic polenta in the Jimmy-Dean-sausage-style-plastic-roll - which honestly, is quite delicious, gluten free, and doesn't have a ton of crap and preservatives in it. Know one's limits, amirite?

I mashed it down into a sauce pan and put it on my cooktop at low medium heat, you know like 3 on my dial. This time I added about 1/3 . of vegetable stock and 1 T of butter. I had about a 1/4 of a jar of sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil that needed to be used, so for fun, I added it all as well. I stirred every few minutes until it was just warm. With the various liquids warmed and the polenta all mashed up, it really became a nice creamy pan of deliciousness. I may or may not have tasted it to make sure it wasn't poison, a few times.....

Non-poisonous creamy polenta with sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil

Yesterday, I took 6 roma tomatoes and a pint of cherry tomatoes, chopped them up, added 6 sliced garlic cloves, minced half of a white onion, chopped 3/4 of a large red pepper, and some olive oil, salt, pepper, smoked paprika, spicy Italian herb mix from my spice nerds at The North Market. Tossed it all together nicely, put it on a large baking sheet and roasted it for 30 minutes. House smelled incredible, by the way. 

Took me maybe 20 minutes to do all of the prep, 30 minutes to roast, maybe an hour to cool it down and at the end of my labor, had roughly 3.5 cups of a delightful tomato ragout with a bit of a kick (from the red pepper, smoked paprika and spicy Italian mix). Brilliant. 

So back to lunch: I had taken yesterday's tomato concoction out of the frig to warm up a bit, while I prepared the polenta. Took a cup of the warmed polenta and added it to one my lunch containers, then added a cup of the tomato ragout and POOF, easy peasy, tasty, filling lunch for 3 days. 

I will add to this entree, a cup of my homemade plain Greek yogurt with 1 c. of fruit (have basically run out of flash frozen from my freezer, so good thing some of the berries are back to domestic production....), as well as 1 c. of greens with about 1/4 c. of crumbled feta. 

According to MyFitnessPal, it will be a lunch of 538 calories, which is not bad at all. I try to stay between 450-600 for lunch on a day when dinner will be a protein shake (which is most days). 

I have more posts planned this week and SINCE MARCH WILL BE NOTHING BUT AWESOMENESS, stay tuned. Hope everyone else's 2014 so far has been fab. 

*- in summation: 
1. adult ear infection which caused me to walk like a drunk toddler for the last half of the month, quickly followed by a fluenza, which did not help the ear infection along. 
2. Various family members with maladies of varying degrees (all are quite stable now though, and for those from whom I requested happy mojo, I really, truly appreciate it). 
3. Fun travel - post on that to come. THE HIGHLIGHT OF FEBRUARY. 
Thanks for asking, My Other Husband.  

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