For those of you that follow my blog, you may have been wondering “where is Hana?” Without realizing it, I haven’t posted anything new and exciting for almost 4 weeks! There has been a lot going on. I have taken on a new volunteer position with the Southern Arizona Celiac Support Group. I am now serving as the President of the Medical Advisory Board. With this position I will be working to improve awareness of celiac disease and enhance access to good medical care for those with celiac in Tucson. At the UA, I have been vigorously organizing the UA Food Day Fair. Mark October 24th on your calendar and make your way to the UA Mall to celebrate healthy and sustainable foods!
And on the home-front, my sister got married! Her wedding was beautiful and lots and lots of fun. We got to enjoy family that came for the wedding weekend and we were lucky to have our Oregon fam stay through last week! Yay cousins!!
We have been busy on all fronts, and then our fridge broke! For some reason it’s just freezing everything.
So last week when I had a presentation on the Anti-Inflammatory Diet, I sort freaked out and almost threw in the towel on doing a food demo and taste testing. But, I prevailed by modifying a couple anti-inflammatory salads that I have made in the past. A few short cuts and viola! Two delicious and anti-inflammatory salads to share with you. So no excuses! If I could pull this off, you can too. Trust me, healthy food is within your reach!
A plant-based diet that is high in antioxidants and fiber is the foundation of an anti-inflammatory diet. That’s why these two salads incorporate color, crunch, spice, intact grains and legumes. These can be side salads or main dishes, depending on your nutritional needs and the ratios of each ingredient.
Curried Quinoa Salad
- 1 1/2 cups quinoa*
- 3 cups water
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1/2 tablespoon ginger
- Chopped walnuts, about 3/4 cup*
- Chopped cilantro, about 1/2 bunch, optional
- Apples, organic, about 2, diced
- Frozen shelled edamame, organic, about 3/4 cup
- Extra virgin olive oil, about 2 tablespoons
- Apple cider vinegar, about 2 tablespoons
- Bring the water to a boil. When boiling, add quinoa and spices. This will make more than you need for this recipe. Save half in a glass container and freeze for future use.
- While the quinoa cooks, chop the walnuts and cilantro and dice the apples.
- Use about half of the the cooked quinoa, and mix with walnuts, cilantro, apple and edamame in a large mixing bowl.
- Drizzle the salad with olive oil and vinegar. Taste and season appropriately.
Use more or less of each of the ingredients to meet your own tastes and needs. Every ingredient in this salad will have an anti-inflammatory affect, and that makes this dish pretty amazing and super delicious! The combination of the spicy curry and sweet apples is surprising; when a coworker tasted it, she said, “whoa, there’s a lot happening in my mouth right now!” She’d never tried quinoa before and she loved this dish.
Fast Lentil Salad
Lentils are a great source of plant-based protein. Frozen veggies and store-bought vinaigrette means this can be done quickly and easily.
- 1 block extra firm tofu, organic
- Brianna’s French Vinaigrette
- 1 can lentils
- 1 small bag frozen peas and carrots
- 1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
- Oregano, garlic powder and thyme
- Cube the extra firm tofu and place in an air-tight container. Cover with vinaigrette and store in the fridge. Marinate at least 4 hours.
- Drain and rinse the lentils.
- Mix the lentils, frozen peas and carrots, and chopped parsley in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the marinated tofu and vinaigrette.
- Season with dried herbs and garlic powder.
Make ahead tips: On the weekend before my Friday presentation, I cooked the quinoa and marinated the tofu. On Wednesday night I made the quinoa salad and on Friday morning I put together the lentils.
NOTE: For those that follow my blog, to better meet the needs of those with celiac and gluten-sensitivity, I am changing the format of how I indicate which ingredients need to be gluten-free. I will be identifying the ingredients that need to be confirmed gluten-free for those with celiac with an asterisk.
*For those with celiac, ensure that this ingredient is gluten-free and from a gluten-free facility or is certified gluten-free.