Hi friends. How are you?
I feel like I've started this post this same way so many times in the last year, but man, what a week.
I always feel like a bit of an outsider commenting on American politics. I'm a Canadian living in Sweden (I am actually a dual citizen, but I do not feel Swedish so never identify as such), so what happens in the US does not affect me directly.
But as I've said previously, what happens in the US has a massive ripple effect on the rest of the world. So when the President of the United States fans the flames of domestic terrorism, when his supporters storm the Capitol building, when the police and law enforcement not only let it happen but take freaking selfies with these people?
Man oh man.
It's hard to know what to say or what to do in times like these, but one thing I DO know for sure is that saying nothing is unacceptable.
I've had people tell me to stay in my lane, to stick to the recipes, and to those people I say, you are welcome to find your free content elsewhere. Hey Nutrition Lady is an inclusive platform, one that is welcoming of people of all shapes, sizes, colours, races, and religions. There is no place for hate here, and that goes for all kinds of hate, from fat-shaming to white supremacy.
What we saw on Wednesday was a blatant show of the latter. White supremacy paraded so blatantly as they stormed the Capitol building. Privilege used so brazenly, so smugly, as they vandalized and terrorized knowing full well there would be little to no consequences.
America is broken. There is no doubt about that. But it would be arrogant for those of us watching from afar to think the same thing couldn't happen where we live.
I think we all have a duty, wherever we are in the world, to use whatever platform we have to denounce white supremacy, to denounce hate, and to provide a safe space for those who need it. Right now, our brothers and sisters in the US need it, and in particular those who are in black and brown bodies who witnessed such a stark affirmation of the ugliness they already knew to be true.
Whenever I feel helpless and unsure of what to do next, my default is to make a donation. To be honest I'm not sure of the best place to make a donation in light of these events, so if anyone knows better please let us know in the comments. For now I'm making a donation to Black Lives Matter because it's the best thing I can think of.
I don't know about you guys, but I have been having some serious pandemic fatigue lately. I feel like there was a lot riding on 2021 where many of us felt like if we could just get to the finish line, if we could just put 2020 behind us, then things would be fine.
And yes, I know we're only 10 days into 2021 and we're in the middle of winter and everything is cold and dark and sucky and the spring is coming and vaccine roll-out is happening, but STILL. I'm over it.
I just want to fast-forward to June and be wearing shorts and have a post-vaccine bandaid on my arm and be drinking rosé on a warm balcony with friends and giving out hugs like candy and have a ticket booked to take my kids back home to see their grandparents for the first time in two years. I don't want to weather it out through a dreary winter, things have been dreary enough as it is.
We've gotten our first serious dumps of snow over the past week which is really screwing things up for me as a year-round bike commuter. I actually tried to get studded tires for my bike this week but naturally on the day I went, the store was closed for inventory. I'm going to have a couple of treacherous bike rides in my future until I can get back to the shop, but hopefully I'll have it sorted soon.
The schools here are keeping kids outside as much as possible due to covid, and when I picked them up on Friday afternoon after a day of wet snow, both kids were completely soaked and Niko was beside himself. He wailed, I mean WAILED at the top of his lungs, for the entire 20 minute bike ride back to my place.
At one point I asked him if he wanted me to stop and talk to him about his toes or just bike home as fast as possible, and he said, "I JUST NEED TO CRY RIGHT NOW!" And so he did. Loudly. And for a long time.
Once we got home and had a warm-up shower and a hot chocolate all was well, but it made me realize that I should probably start picking them up earlier so they're not so freezing by the time I get there. I also bought Niko a pair of "slush boots" this weekend, along with some wool socks, and two new pairs of gloves - although 98% of the time when I pick him up he is not wearing gloves anyways.
Only six more months until summer, right? We can do this.
This is the second week of the Batchuary challenge, and I'm loving hearing what you guys are getting up to with your batch cooking. One reader told me that the batch cooking was already life changing for her. Life changing!
If you didn't get in on week one of Batchuary, it's not too late!
I sent the details for the second week to my newsletter subscribers on Wednesday, but I’ll recap it for you here as well.
Here’s how it works: each week you cook just three things – a grain, a green, and a protein. Then throughout the week you use what you’ve made to pull together simple, nourishing meals.
This week's batch cooking challenge is to add a SAUCE into the mix. Having a tasty sauce on hand can be a game changer that transforms a tray of roasted vegetables and a batch of beans into a delicious meal.
I'm making a batch of the magic tahini sauce from these Winter Vegetable Meal Prep Bowls, which, by the way, are an excellent batch cooking meal themselves.
Here's what I'm making this week:
Grain: A batch of black rice.
Green: A big kale salad, and a tray of Mediterranean Roast Vegetables.
Protein: I've got a block of smoked tofu to cube up and throw into bowls, and am also making a batch of black lentils.
Sauce: Magic tahini sauce!
I'll be mixing and matching these ingredients in salads, meal bowls and more.
ON HEY NUTRITION LADY THIS WEEK
This week we kicked things off with a reboot of an old recipe for One-Pan Vegetarian Burrito Bowls. This recipe couldn't be easier or more delicious - everything gets tossed in one pan (hence the name) and roasted together for a simple, protein-packed, plant-based dinner.
Next up, everything you ever needed to know about How to Cook Tempeh. Tempeh is one of my favourite plant-based proteins, and while I've got lots of tempeh recipes in the archives I've never really broken it down like this before.
WHAT’S TRENDING ON HNL
Yeah, yeah, we all know that Mung Bean and Coconut Curry and How to Cook Mung Beans are in the top spots. So let’s look at what else is trending.
1. Turmeric Latte Mix. Could really use a soothing cup of this right now.
2. 10-Minute Vegetable Ramen Noodles. Mmm, so good.
3. Chia Fresca. I actually drank a Chia Fresca this week. Forgot how weird and delicious it is!
4. Red Lentil Dal. Perfect in the slow cooker or Instant Pot.
5. Black Bean and Quinoa Freezer Burritos. Such a good thing to have on hand.
COMMENT OF THE WEEK
Jennifer left the following comment and 5-star review on my Kale Tabbouleh Salad recipe:
Easy and delicious! We had it with beet falafels tonight and it was filling and satisfying! Very much looking forward to the leftovers for lunch for a couple of days!
Mmm, sounds like such a tasty lunch menu this week!
THIS WEEK’S MENU
Once again, this week's menu is largely influenced by the batch cooking I've done over the weekend, although a lot of that stuff will become my work lunches and I'll be pulling together some simple meals for the kids.
I'm also trying to curb my takeout habit and turn it into more of a once-in-a-while or special occasion thing, so for the month of January I've committed to no takeout. Gah!
HERE’S WHAT’S ON THE MENU THIS WEEK:
Sunday: I'm solo, so photoshoot leftovers for me!
Monday: A nice big salad + smoked tofu for protein.
Tuesday: Testing out Pita Pockets on the kids, stuffed with chickpeas, veggies, and hummus. We'll see how that goes.
Wednesday: Tortellini, halloumi, and broccoli.
Thursday: Omelet night.
Friday: Either pizza with dough from the freezer or 10-Minute Vegetable Ramen Noodles.
Saturday: Making a pasta recipe from the new Ottolenghi cookbook.
WHAT’S GOOD AROUND THE WEB
1. 10 foods with misleading health halos to watch out for in 2021.
2. What chopping your vegetables has to do with fighting cancer.
3. The beginners guide to intuitive eating.
4. The benefits of exercise are many, but long-term weight loss isn't (necessarily) one of them.
5. What to can, preserve, and eat in winter.
Dear Katie, I think you do everything in an exemplary manner!
Just like Gina, I am always looking forward to your contributions, such a refreshingly open and honest manner! Don't give up and do your thing!
As Gina has already mentioned, I also believe that you are already giving a lot with your super great recipes, tips and, above all, your mind-expanding opinions!
I am so happy that I got to know you for a short time in my life and I am extremely proud of your valuable work. Hope to see you again sometime!
Take care of yourself and your family, love Rita
Thank you for saying something.
HNL I look forward to your weekly email; it’s a great way to start my Sunday morning 🙂
I’m glad you don’t “stick to your food blogger lane”, it’s what makes you, well, you. It’s a key reason I read your weekly email. Please keep sending your opinion on world and life events. It’s a way to connect, share and be heard during these crazy times. Regarding giving back, I think you already give back by openly and plainly stating your opinion on what’s happening, so feel good about that and know it helps a lot of your readers.
On the food side I’m glad you are pulling back the curtain on tempeh which is my favourite plant based protein. I digest it better then tofu. Will be cooking some this week so will be back on your website to learn and cook.