14 January 2016

A millet "falafel"

The new year is always an opportunity to think about better eating habits.  For me that means I'm looking for ways to eat more veggies and whole grains, and less bread and pasta.  I also have the goal of finding ways to cook with new grains, seeds, and other ingredients I don't usually cook with to change things up a bit.

Last night I tried a recipe from It's All Good by Gwenyth Paltrow -- one of my go-to cookbooks for healthy inspiration.  I made the Millet "Falafel" with Avocado and Tomato Relish (page 203).  For me, falafel is usually wrapped in a pita, but this pita-less version is definitely a keeper.  Easy to make and full of protein and flavor, I think this will become part of the dinner time rotation -- especially if I'm feeding folks who don't do wheat.  Plus, this time of year I'm finding beautiful avocados in great supply, so it's a nice way to showcase them. 

The falafel is made of 1 part cooked millet, 1/2 part chickpeas with scallions, parsley and lemon zest mashed together with some olive oil and salt to taste.  I found that the key to helping the falafel patties stay together when frying them in a skillet (there is no real binder in them) is to minimize the amount of oil in the pan.  The finished result is lighter than traditional falafel, but still with a bit of crunch on the outside despite not being deep fried.  I opted to also make a yogurt-tahini dressing to drizzle over the patties (works well on pretty much anything else you can think to eat it on too). My five year old even ate one and pronounced it good.

The avocado-tomato relish is simply tomatoes and avocado dressed with some scallions and lemon juice.  And since I wanted a little something more for the meal, I tossed together a can of chickpeas, minced red onion, chopped bell pepper with salt, pepper, olive oil and champagne vinegar for second side salad.

I can hardly believe I'm posting a picture of the leftovers container from dinner last night, but that's all I've got since I'm out of the habit of actually photographing while I cook.  Despite the terrible pic, I hope it makes consider giving millet a try too.



04 January 2016

No promises

Apparently I've been away from my blog so long now that it took extra steps of verification for Google to let me back in to blog.  Goodness!  I won't bore you with a recap of the last many months I've been AWOL.

Just life, like always.  Mostly good stuff.  Some less than great stuff.  Lots of laundry. Too much of some things.  Okay, a few highlights from 2015:  We finished landscaping the front yard (after five years), we had a Seattle summer that actually produced tomatoes in August, my part time law practice reached its annual goals, I helped a nonprofit board on which I serve to purchase property for new school, my child lost six teeth before the age of five, and then there were the two kittens we acquired in mid-November.  Enough.

What will 2016 be about for me?  Of course I don't know the future, but I'm old enough to realize that much of the future is in fact up to me. So here's my somewhat random list of a dozen things I want the year to include -- some hopes, some goals, some to-dos, no promises.
  1. Hiking a portion of the Wonderland Trail
  2. Learning about index funds:  how to pick them and use them effectively in my portfolio
  3. Replacing 18 windows and putting in a master bathroom (the room was gutted five years ago . . . it's time)
  4. Talking about interesting stuff with friends more
  5. Making the most of our last year of preschool, which means maximizing the "mom and Wy" mornings + Fridays that I have every week
  6. Improving my listening skills
  7. Reading and writing more
  8. Enjoying another hot summer in Seattle
  9. Harvesting my first crop of plums from my new trees
  10. Visiting an island in the San Juans that I've not been to before
  11. Practicing yoga regularly
  12. Cooking Indian food at home