October 2, 2014

5 Meals Inspired by What Goes Around the Plate

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup. photo credit: Diets in Review

by Brandi Koskie for DietsInReview.com

At the end of my freshman year of college I returned to my parents’ home for one more summer. That night, to welcome me back, my dad suggested we order a pizza. I shouted, “NO!” Had he any idea how much pizza I’d consumed in the last nine months? I remember at one point while living in the dorms actually missing forks. I had a craving for silverware. That night, I insisted we eat a meal that required silverware and hands only for wiping on napkins.

Like most college kids, my meals were hand-held. Slices of pizza, tacos, chicken strips, sandwiches, burgers… I rarely, if ever, needed a fork, knife or spoon to eat. While not a hard and fast rule, the more hand-held a meal, the less healthy it is. A college diet is living proof.

As this site suggests, what goes around your plate is as important as what goes on it. So I’ve gathered some of my favorite recipes that are not hand-held and do require a utensil accompaniment.

Pork Tenderloin with Grapes and Pomegranate Sauce. This seasonally appropriate dinner will, while tender, require both a knife and a fork. It’s a lean protein prepared in a sweet and tangy sauce that makes a beautiful centerpiece for a holiday meal. You can serve this with roasted winter vegetables, mashed sweet potatoes, or a big green salad with crisp apple slices.

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup. Soup is perfect because it can be a little portable but isn’t necessarily hand-held. Plus, during these colder months, it satisfies your body and soul. Our homemade roasted tomato basil soup requires a bit of investment for prep time, but the result is enough soup to freeze and eat for weeks. Sip it out of a mug or slurp it from a spoon. The only hand-held part of this meal should be a grilled cheese sandwich for dipping!

Chobani Blood Orange Smoothie. Yes, the cup is hand-held, but the straw to drink all of the nutrients packed in this on-the-go breakfast is a necessary utensil. We use 0% fat Chobani Greek yogurt’s tantalizing blood orange flavor mixed with blueberries, banana, avocado, and spinach for a grand slam punch of nutrients and satiating fiber to kickstart your morning.

One Pot Chicken Chutney. A fork and a healthy appetite are all you’ll need to polish off a plate of this amazing fall recipe. Juicy chunks of chicken breast prepared with loads of fall produce like parsnips, sweet potatoes, apricots and apples make a meal that’s almost too pretty to eat.

The other hand-held you should skip at mealtime is your phone. You can’t fully focus on what you’re eating if you’re wrapped up in a Facebook or Twitter feed or demanding email from a client. Eating mindfully means being present for each bite. Put down the hand-held foods, the hand-held devices, and pick-up more meals that require your full attention and we promise your appetite and waist line will be grateful.