Monday, September 17, 2012

A few words on breakfast and notes on a weekend

Happy Monday morning, folks. Apparently I'm not a weekend blogger. I'm ok with that-- I wasn't entirely sure how weekends would shape up in the blogging world since we sleep in (kind of... we do have 2 toddlers) and I don't formally exercise or typically record food intake on Saturday and Sunday. So Monday-Friday seems to be when I'm able to hop on.

So breakfast. I'm finding that a lot of dieters/lifestyle changers really struggle with breakfast. Some people's former go-tos are now perceived as off-limits. No more sugary cereal; no more PopTarts; bacon or no bacon? There just seems to be so much confusion about what will be filling and truly break the overnight fast and get you to lunch time and still stay within calorie and nutrient restrictions.

Last Monday, I posted a recipe for pumpkin pie baked oatmeal which has 190 calories per serving. I try to stay around 300 calories for breakfast (then there's 400 for lunch, 400 for dinner and 100 for a snack). However, that is just my personal preference. If you'd rather have a bigger breakfast and cut back at lunch, go for it! It's all about what is sustainable and works within your lifestyle.

I have noticed in my own diet and in the diet of many around me that we (Americans? Mid-Americans? my little group of friends & family? I'm not really sure how to define the 'we') are somedays severely lacking in vegetables. Scott and I are members of a CSA, so we do have access to a lot of fresh produce that I am struggling to learn to cook and use effectively (this is our first year); but some people I talk to say things like "I know I need to eat more kale/chard/greens/green vegetables, but I have no idea what to do with them and/or what I tried last week tasted TERRIBLE." I'll admit, greens take a little getting used to and take some creativity and really good recipes to actually ENJOY for me. I have a friend who loves greens and seems to eat them constantly (I'm sure this isn't true, though). I've been trying a lot of different things, and one that has worked REALLY well for me has been adding kale to my scrambled eggs in the morning. I know, I know you guys are thinking "WHAT?!!? I don't need greens THAT badly! KALE! for BREAKFAST?!" Yeah, I thought the same thing. But guys. I have one serving of veggies under my belt alread and it's not even 8am. And it adds extra volume to my breakfast and I almost couldn't finish my eggs this morning. So give it a shot. I think you'll like it! Here's my method:

1. slice up one (or half of one if they're big) apple & maple chicken sausage (I used meijer brand). Saute over medium-low heat in a pan sprayed with cooking spray. Let it get a little brown, but not too much.
2. While the sausage is browning, chop up a nice handful of kale. I used 2 small leaves. Remove the middle rib and chop leaves into 1" cubes. I used organic red kale, but any sort of tender green like chard, any sort of kale, or whatever you have on hand should work well. I wouldn't use more bitter greens like turnips or collards. Those need to be cooked longer.
3. Add kale to the pan with the sausage and saute until bright green and a little wilted. My kale hasn't been wilting very much lately, so just saute for 3ish minutes. Remove sausage and kale from pan.
4. Scramble one or two large eggs (so stir up in a separate bowl, add a tablespoon of milk and a pinch of salt & pepper) in the same pan. Just before set, when it still looks a little wet, add back the kale and sausage and mix together.
5. Sprinkle with some grated fresh Parmesan (just a tablespoon or so). Stir to melted and then eat! I had a whole wheat frozen waffle (Van's brand) with mine, but any bread product would be great.

Let me know how you like it!

Today's food diary can be found here:


Megan said...

Maybe I'm that friend that eats greens all the time, I'm not sure. But I eat them for breakfast most days, and my favorite breakfast is this:

Heap of greens (2c or more) wilted and drizzled with roasted walnut oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. A runny-yolk egg on top. Then some whole-grain bread of some sort, usually a muffin or a bagel with apple butter, and maybe a little fruit, since I'm not having to watch carbs and I feel crazy without enough carbs because of nursing. It's usually a breakfast around 350 calories, and super filling because of all the greens.

My favorite greens for breakfast are kale, kohlrabi greens (which we can only get during CSA season) or turnip greens. It takes a while to learn to eat a healthy breakfast, but man, once you're used to it, there's no going back, because few things make you feel more amazing in the morning than a super healthy breakfast, at least for me.

Tara said...

Yes, you are absolutely the friend who eats greens all the time :)

I am definitely going ot have to try the greens with runny egg! I haven't gotten the walnut oil thing going yet, but I want it. And we have bagels right now because of left overs from the women's conference today. I have some kale I think... hmm.... :)

I'm still struggling with turnip greens. Kale, chard, even carrot greens I am loving. But I've not gotten the taste of turnip greens yet!