Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I'm a firm believer that there is no such thing as too many vegetables

Last week's meal choices were about as far from healthy as I could get. They involved Chinese food, pizza, breadsticks, lots of pasta, and three meals at Wild Wing Cafe. And even though on Chinese night, I ordered chicken & broccoli, vegetables were pretty scarce. I love vegetables. Honestly if I didn't also love chicken, fish, and steak, I'd happily become a vegetarian. And as much as I love foods that are bad for me, sometimes I just really need a vegetable.  Or six.

I knew I had hit the point of veggie deficiency (think scurvy, but with vegetables instead of fruit), when I was in Target on Saturday morning, and I felt an overwhelming urge to go to the food section and chug a V-8. My salad for dinner that night did nothing to curb my veggie cravings. On Sunday, I was set for my standing dinner with R. He suggested we go out, and I said "No. I need vegetables more than I need restaurant fare." So we made a stir fry.

R dragged me to the store with him, so I could  pick out exactly what I wanted in this meal.  I may have gone a little overboard in the produce section, as I was throwing just about anything green into the shopping cart.  We ended up with baby portobello mushrooms, three bell peppers (red, yellow, and orange), asparagus, broccoli, green onions, haricots verts, snow peas, and zucchini.  And, because R insisted, we also threw in some steak tips.
R made me go to Earth Fare, so everything was organic. 

Can you see the chunks of olives in the bread?
I almost got roped into actually cooking, but managed to get out of it by volunteering to chop all of the veggies.  I'm a really good sous chef, but not so good when it comes to the actual cooking part.  So while we were prepping and cooking and just generally catching each other up on our lives, we munched on some cheese and bread.  The bread was just your basic Italian bread....with a mix of Greek olives thrown in.  Add a little olive oil and herbs to dip in, and it was fantastic.  We had our usual Havarti cheese and also added in an English cheddar with mustard seeds.  This one was really belonged on some kind of high-end deli sandwich.    Of course, we also opened a bottle of wine.  It was a pinot grigio, so a little bit of a departure from our forays into the world of red wines.  At any rate, it worked really well with both our meal and dessert.

Look at all those veggies!  My poor little vegetable deprived heart was doing a happy dance.
Dinner was delicious.  We may have overcooked the meat a little bit.  You can blame me for that one, because for some reason R told me I had to be in charge of that.  I would have done much better with the vegetables.  We marinated and cooked everything in garlic and teriyaki sauce, which gave it a great flavor.  As you can see, we served it over brown rice.  I know that the plate above looks super full, but trust me when I tell you that I ate every last bite.  I certainly needed it, and my body was much happier to have something that wasn't fried.

Of course we had dessert too.  We bought dessert pre-made, so there's not much to say there.  We happened to swing by the dessert case while we were in Earth Fare, and they had mini cannoli on display.  I love cannoli, so I insisted on getting two of the mini ones.  Of course then they had strawberry cheesecake and blueberry cheesecake crumble, so we had to try a little bit of those too.  I couldn't finish dessert because I was so stuffed from all of the vegetables at dinner, but it was good. 

Overall, it was a great end to a fabulous weekend.  I wonder if I'd be pushing my luck to try to get even more veggies on my plate next weekend......

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