Beyond Broccoli

In an effort to add more dimension to my blog, I wanted to talk about FOOD. Not from a nutritionist point of view, but from a girl, that happens to be an athlete and loves food point of view!  
I grew up in a food loving family, but not by any means what an “average American” would consider food loving...or food for that matter.  We didn’t consume copious amounts of sugary treats or greasy fried goodness. In fact, I recall my Dad candidly remarking “If you eat fat, greasy food, you’ll be a fat, greasy dude”!
I’ve been a lover of all fruits and veggies for as long as I can remember and gladly make a chocolate bar last the better part of a year!  (ice cream is another story)
Lucky for me, I realized young how different foods affect my body, opting for the ones that make me feel good, and keep me from feeling lethargic, lazy and, well…gross!

I will reiterate, I am not an EXPERT, I just listen to my body (sometimes more than others) and eat real food!

Since it's fresh in my mind, I'll start with Christmas dinner.  The only holiday tradition my family has, is trying new things.  No gigantic pile of meat, no mashed potatoes, none of what you would see in most homes, and I wouldn't have it any other way!


I was lucky enough to make dinner for my Dad who was visiting from out of town, and I, which entailed pan seared sea scallops w/ salt and pepper (cooked to absolute perfection. seriously), a side of steamed broccoli (perfectly cooked as well) sprinkled with cheese and we shared most of a demi baguette.  
You see the real star of this meal was WHO was at it, not what we ate.  And the lovely bottle of 2011 Beaujolais ;)

I was actually house sitting, so I had breakfast by myself, played with the dogs and went for a run with my virtual running buddy, all before meeting up with my brother's family for a little gift exchange.  Afterwards I took a quick nap and headed to my Mom's house.
Dinner turned out to be an unexpected treat!  I anticipated having leftovers from my Mom’s breakfast - our ONE  tradition is chili rellenos on Christmas, but she decided NOT to make it - what?!  And felt like stir fry - wha-what? DONE! 
What I love about going to my Mom’s is that she tells me what she wants and I get to create it! (I L.O.V.E. to cook)
So, we had chicken stir fry with absolutely stunning black rice.
It was not from a recipe or planned, so we just grabbed what was in the fridge and gave it a whirl!

Here’s what was in it:
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
½ Red Onion, diced
4 large carrots, sliced
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 turnip, cut into matchsticks
1 clove garlic, minced
Ginger - I thumb sized piece, minced
4 baby bok choy, sliced
5 mild chilies, sliced
juice from a mandarin orange
crushed red peppers
soy sauce (low sodium)
ginger-garlic seasoning & spicy Szechuan seasoning

served with black rice

Um - yum!

Sometimes we do plan further ahead, but whether we do, or don’t, it’s never a stress.  The nice thing about not having traditional holiday meals, is that there’s no expectation.  No one’s favorite dish goes missing, instead, we usually all find a new favorite! Better yet, if it's a disappointment, no worries, we weren't planning on making it again anyway ;)
This year, I encourage you to go beyond tradition and just do and/or eat what feels good!