Dinner Tonight


After several days away from home, I made a quick, tasty, vegetarian dinner this evening.

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Since I am leaving for California early Wednesday morning and did not want to buy more food, I used what I could find in the refrigerator:  Brussel sprouts, red bell pepper, poblano pepper, broccoli, onion.  I found a container of pepitas in the pantry and added some of those as well.

1/4 yellow onion, finely chopped

1 small poblano pepper, deseeded and coarsely chopped

1 red bell pepper, deseeded and coarsely chopped

6 Brussel sprouts, sliced

Several broccoli florets

Olive oil

Basil essential oil or dried basil

Pepitas

Pour enough olive oil in skillet to cover bottom and heat on medium low.  Add onions and saute until carmelized.  Add Brussels sprouts.  When sprouts are about half done, add remaining ingredients and six drops of basil essential oil.  Saute until tender but still bright colored.  Toss in a handful of pepitas.  Serve over pasta or rice.

I served this with pasta and grated asiago cheese on top.  Although I frequently use parmesan for grating, I actually prefer asiago.  Without the cheese, this is vegan.

 

Cod Loin with Fennel and Lemon


This recipe, one of my favorites, will appear in my soon to be released cookbook full of family and life stories about food, family, and friends.  I made this tonight around eight.  As usual, I made enough for leftovers for another meal. Makes it easier if you work or are really busy.

Two small cod loins or one large cut in half

3 gloves garlic, chopped

1 poblano pepper, deseeded and coarsely chopped

Fennel essential oil

Lemon essential oil

Vegetables of your choosing cut into bite sized pieces

1 small handful of pepitas

Olive oil

I vary this by using different vegetables, e.g. spinach, Swiss chard, Brussel sprouts, beets, carrots.  Tonight I used Brussel sprouts.

Saute garlic in olive oil until golden.  If you use beets or carrots, sauce them with the garlic until nearly tender.  If you use spinach, beet greens, Swiss chard, add them last.

Add the cod loins to garlic mixture and sprinkle each one with several drops of lemon and fennel essential oil.  If you do not use essential oil, sprinkle with ground fennel and add deseeded lemons.  If using Brussel sprouts, cut them in slices and add at the same time as the cod.  When the cod is half cooked, add the poblano peppers and cook only until cod is done and the peppers are cooked but still bright green.  If using spinach, etc., add them just before cod and peppers are done and stir until wilted.  Sprinkle pepitas over the rice and vegetables.  Serve over pasta or rice.

Note:  I have also used fresh fennel for this recipe.  If you decide to do this, saute it along with the garlic.

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Almost done.

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Served over Basmati rice.  Salad is red bell peppers, red cabbage, romaine lettuce, radishes, and scallions with roasted sesame seed oil for dressing.

Sleep, Fitbit, and Essential Oils


Several months ago I won a Fitbit at work.  At that time my main concern, heath question, was this:  Am I getting enough exercise?  Quite quickly I realized I was concerned about the wrong health issue.  I apparently get more exercise on a normal day than I ever imagined, just doing what I do:  yoga in the morning, walking around the building at work, feeding my horse, chores.  Much to my horror, however, I discovered that I was getting way less deep sleep than recommended by every article I had seen.  It became such a concern that I was getting less, not more sleep.  I decided to investigate.  If you want to track the stages of sleep, forget Fitbit.  You may be able to use it as some sort of general guide but nothing definitive.  To actually know how many hours and minutes of various stages you sleep, you must go to experts and they must measure your brainwaves.  Predictably, once I learned that, guess what, I immediately slept better.

If you have sleep issues or just want to go to sleep in a fabulous smelling atmosphere, try essential oils.  You can go online and find a list from various “experts” outlining the top ten for relaxation and better sleep.  These include lavender, myrrh, Roman chamomile, cedar wood, sandalwood, neroli–the list varies slightly depending on the site.  Plus, everyone differs so experiment to see what works for you.  Here is what I found works for me:  diffuse lavender and melaleuca in a diffuser next to your bed (melaleuca or tea tree does nothing for sleep but is good for so many other things;  I also use doTerra breathe for allergies), rub several drops of cedar wood on both feet, rub several drops sandalwood on your wrists.  This combination has improved my sleep greatly.  I read yesterday that mixing lavender with Roman chamomile is effective, but I have not tried that yet.

I would be interested in hearing from others what works for them.  Happy Dreams!!