An average Jane on health and nutrition

Posts tagged ‘breakfast’

Annnnnnd breakfast.

The sunlight, insanely bright this morning, woke me and wouldn’t let me fall back asleep. I took that as a sign to get up and make my salmon leftovers.

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And, since it’s early and low humidity, I think I’ll go for a short hike this morning. Nourish the body with good food, keep it fit and running smoothly with good activity.

PS. About the grape tomatoes. I mentioned yesterday that cooking for one sometimes comes with extra ingredients. With some things, it’s just apparently unavoidable. If there’s a stray veggie just stuck off to the side of something, chances are I’m getting it into some meals to use it up before it goes bad. I treat veggies like the jeans of the food world. They go with everything.

-Julia

Tonight’s Dinner is Tomorrow’s Breakfast: Cooking for One

I live alone, and sometimes cooking for one is a hassle. Some food items are clearly intended for multiple people, and I can either make it and eat it for days, or wait til friends come over. (I’m looking at you, tacos.)

But, cooking for two and thinking of it as “two meals” instead of “two people” works pretty well for me. So when I saw a beautiful piece of salmon on sale, I bought one, intending to bake up half for dinner, and save the other half for breakfast. The trick to cooking for one with the same ingredients is to think of things to do that make the meals different, so that it doesn’t seem boring and repetitive.

I’m not a vegetarian, but I find that I don’t buy a ton of meat because it’s effort to cook it for myself, and I often just don’t bother. One of the things I do like to buy on sale, though, is Al Fresco Sweet Italian chicken sausage. On sale it’s usually $5 for several links, and I’ve found numerous uses. My favorite it to cook up a couple links at the same time, and then separate them into different dishes. I may add one to a small bowl of pasta with olives, peas, and sauce for a quick pasta dish, or stir fry pieces with some onions and peppers to put in a roll for a sausage grinder. I’ll chop up pieces for an omelette, or use them in breakfast muffins. (Recipe eventually, I promise.)

So with the salmon, I thought, how can I make this into two distinct, separate meals? For starters, I thought baking for dinner.

I picked up some dill, in an unfortunately-large bunch that will see me searching for dill-related recipes for the rest of the week, and knew I had a lemon at home. Throwing it all in some foil:

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Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes (making rice in the meantime) and voila. Dinner.

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And for tomorrow, I’ll fry up the rest of it, and mix it in with some scrambled eggs, spinach, and cheese over toast.

One food item, two separate and tasty uses. Cooking for one, with a little planning: delicious and healthy.

Do you regularly cook for just yourself? What are your favorite ways to make the most of your meals?

– Julia

 

On breakfast

Recently, I’ve been hungry. In the morning. Soon after waking up.

So *this* is why breakfast exists! Gotcha.

I always thought that maybe there were breakfast people and non-breakfast people. Non-breakfast people (like yours truly) just aren’t hungry when they get up. It’s cool, I’ll eat later when I’m hungry, probably a few hours into the workday. I’d heard for years that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, etc. etc. but if you’re not hungry? I mean.. you shouldn’t eat just for the heck of it.. maybe I’m not a breakfast person. (Like how I’m not a “morning person” even though I’ll enjoy being up in the morning if I make myself.)

Then I decided to pay more serious attention to losing weight. I’d read several articles espousing the benefits of breakfast, and some questionable but often-repeated stats about breakfast-eaters weighing less, and finally I figured you know.. let’s give this whole breakfast thing a try.

I’d seen suggested breakfasts in any number of nutrition-related articles. Lean proteins, some veggies, carbs, juice. Hahaha.. yeah, right.

a) there’s no way in hell I’m getting up earlier to make myself that breakfast (see: not a morning person) and

b) there’s no way I even want to eat that much food in the morning.

So I started small. Oatmeal, maybe. A banana. I recently started making a batch of bran-related muffins on Sundays to grab throughout the workweek.

I would get up, get ready for work, and make myself eat something. “Kickstarting my metabolism”  is the phrase from the nutrition articles. This fit in nicely with not eating much. Well, I’m not hungry, but I’m kickstarting my metabolism. So just a bit of food. For the betterment of my health and rest of the day. Cuz it’s for my METABOLISM.

So for awhile I kickstarted my metabolism every morning, usually with a relatively plain and always easy-to-grab food item. It fit in okay with my better eating at lunch and dinner, so okay. Sure.

Some days, I literally didn’t want to eat anything. I’d take a bite of the banana and it didn’t feel like finishing it.. there was nothing wrong with the banana, I just wasn’t hungry and therefore the banana didn’t taste good. Usually in this instance, I’d take a few more bites in rapid succession and be done. Metabolism kickstarted.

And then, somewhere in there.. I started actually being hungry. I would wake up and start to get dressed, and my stomach would say, “umhi…having some food soon, right?”

Huh. Interesting.

This is undoubtedly the result of numerous factors, including ones biological that I am not properly educated in.. but the ones I’m sure of include the fact that I’m eating consistent, healthy dinners with an appropriate quantity and variety of food, that I’m working out regularly, and that I’m being pretty consistent with all meals and snacks. (Dinner was notated separately only because it’s the last meal before sleep, and if there’s too much of it, I think it spills over into not being hungry in the morning.)

So being a “breakfast person” can be a learned behavior? Seems like it. I literally can’t imagine not having something for breakfast now. I’ve moved up slightly from the single-item breakfast, but usually only by adding a handful of nuts or a glass of juice. I don’t think I’ll ever be the breakfast person who wakes up during the week and makes an egg-white and veggie scramble with ham, toast, and coffee before work. But I have recently been the person who’ll do an omelet on the weekend.  

Because apparently I’m a breakfast person.

– Julia