Saturday, April 17, 2010

the heart wants what it wants

And yesterday mine wanted carbs. Carbs with a side of carbs. I went with it.

I had the same breakfast three days in a row because it’s just… so… perfect.


Shredded wheat with milk and half a banana and half a grapefruit. It’s just really wonderful and delicious. The milk and the banana and the shredded wheat turn into this wonderful thick filling slightly sweet mush and the grapefruit is, as all grapefruit, perfect.

It’s quite low in protein and fat, particularly compared to my usual breakfast, yet it keeps me completely satisfied til lunch.

Since I believe that the body craves what it needs, I’m going to go with it. It may be that next week I’ll be all carnivore, and I’ll be cool with that, too.

For lunch all my heart wanted was sweet potato fries, so I obliged.


One sweet potato, cut into fry shapes, baked at 375 for 40 minutes on a cooking spray’d tray, flipping halfway through.


Regular readers will know that OBVIOUSLY that is not ketchup, but Sriracha. And yes, I went back for more.

In a lackluster attempt to get in some more food groups, I made a yogurt bowl with plain yogurt, puffs, roasted almonds, and cinnamon.


It was a totally spot-hitting lunch, but didn’t actually leave me all that full for all that long, surprise surprise, so I then ate a gazillion cashews, which I had bought in preparation for dinner which was…

a recipe from THAI COOKING SCHOOL. On Wednesday some lovely people treated me to a surprisingly uplifting post-funeral lunch at Crystal Thai.

There I ate something I ate seriously almost every day in Thailand- green papaya salad. It was delicious and I learned how to make it at my super awesome cooking lesson. I got the necessary ingredients in a jiffy at HMart ($.99 a pound seems totally reasonable for green papaya, but I kind of have no basis for comparison?).

So crazy- in a green papaya, the seeds are white!


And yes, that is my killer mandoline in the background. We’re back on speaking terms. The nice thing about papaya is that it’s big enough to use the HAND GUARD! It’s just those damn carrots, they are the wrong shape!

I figure it’s okay to share my cooking school recipe, because I adapted it. I actually un-vegetarianized it, hah! The cooking school was vegetarian but it was important to incorporate my *secret ingredient*

Green Papaya Salad


2 tsp minced garlic
1/2 c diced tomato (the first I bought this season. Unsurprisingly, it was unimpressive, but it was necessary for the recipe. In general, though, I avoid tomato-heavy dishes til August. Not worth it!)
1 tsp. minced chilis (HMart actually had Thai chilis! And whoo were they hot!)

Give ‘em a good smashing.


In Thailand, we used a mortar and pestle to make the dressing. Lacking that, I made do.

Then add:

1/4 cup sugar water (I added like 2 tsp of sugar to 1/4 cup water- could’ve been sweeter, so maybe add more like a tablespoon or two?)
2 T soy sauce
2 T fish sauce (back when this recipe was vegetarian, we used just a mix of dark and light soy sauce)
Juice of 2 limes
1/4 cup roasted cashews or peanuts

Smash s’more


My secret ingredient!


I have no idea WHY we had dried shrimp, but it is the ingredient that gives green papaya salad its traditional salty oomph!

I added

1/4 c. dried shrimp
1 green papaya, shredded
1/2 a carrot, shredded (could’ve added more, we’re running low)
10 green beans, in one-inch segments

A note on those proportions: the cooking school recipe was designed to serve one and called for a “handful of grated vegetables”. I doubled the dressing, so I guess I was supposed to add “two handfuls”, whatever that means. I used a small papaya, and it made a tonnnn. There was enough liquid for the dressing, but I’d recommend adding more cashews and shrimp for flavor if you’re planning on using as much papaya as I did.

The final product (total fakeout- I got it in the natural light this morning cause I couldn’t get a good one last night!)


I love this salad. I’m so stoked I now know how to make it at home. I know the dried shrimp sounds like a weird ingredient but it’s salty and chewy and the perfect pairing for the other flavors and textures!


But I just wasn’t quite sure I’d had enough carbohydrates for the day (saaaaarcasm) so I opened up a new product to review:


The appearance (almost exactly like a fig newton, no real surprise. They don’t seem real concerned about copyright infringement).


Like all Newman’s cookies, good! Nice fig ratio (I hate sandwich cookies where you can’t taste the filling). A bit bland, but that’s kind of the whole point of this style of cookie, right? Comforting!


Astra Libris said...

Lele, I love your approach to following the body's cravings... I completely agree, the body longs for the nutrients it needs, and being in tune to our body instead of resisting is soooo important! Thank you for reminding me that I need to be more in tune with my own body's culinary requests...

Shredded wheat and banana is my favorite cereal breakfast of all time!! :-)

Seriously impressed with all that sriracha... High five!! You can never have too much fire! :-)

Tamara Marnell said...

The salad looks nummy! But then, you can put soy sauce on practically anything and put it in front of me and I'll call it nummy....

Anonymous said...

I love carby-licious days...I could never be an Atkins spokeswoman, haha. Especially lately! Oh well ;) You're so right - the body craves what it needs!! And your sweet tater fries look perrrrrfectt. I always get too impatient and take them out before theyre nice & crispy.
The salad looks great, too - never had a green papaya!

Jess said...

Love your "food philosophy!!" So healthy!! Such a great mindset :)

<3 jess

Anais said...

I've never had green papaya salad but it looks quite good!!! Speaking of papaya, I have a regular-looking one in my fridge, and it's delicious with a squeeze of lime ;)

Michal said...

I love sweet potato fries, they are so yummy! :)

And i received your packages thank you so much! It is wonderful i am putting up a post about it tomorrow.