taste of october

hummus

For the second annual company “Pumpkin Party” this weekend, T and I made some exceptionally delicious hummus.  But not just any old hummus.  Roasted garlic, rosemary, pumpkin hummus.  Yes, yes, yes.  It was as amazing as it sounds, we will be making it again by the end of the week, and you can have the recipe.  You’re welcome.

keeks in the kitchen: kale salad edition

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As a dancer, being injured poses a lovely little collection of daily frustrations (3 consecutive months out of the studio really does a number on your psyche…whenever I hear classical music it’s an odd battle between tendu-ing and crying).  Hailing from the same genus as preserving those temporarily useless toe calluses and sleeping in the frog stretch several nights a week to remind your hips what torture turn out feels like, staying fit is one of the most important concerns an injured dancer can have.

Without the intense cardio that comes with 6 hours of rehearsal, maintaining that strong dancer’s bod is often even tougher than anticipated- and believe me, no one was expecting it to be easy over here!  With just a few short weeks left before the start of the season (who’s excited?!), I’m vowing to stick to a diet of healthy greens and protein.

So here’s my recipe for a delicious kale salad, packed with essential vitamins, proteins, and fiber to keep you feeling and looking good…

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Start with some greens.  For this salad I chopped up some romaine and mixed it with kale, my new favorite superfood.DSC02760

Next I added a little steamed, shelled edamame.  These low-calorie little green soybeans are the perfect punch of protein!DSC02763

Chickpeas, aka garbanzo beans, are always a good addition to any salad, loading it up with their fiber, protein and healthy fats. DSC02765

To top it off, I added some juicy golden raisins, chopped walnuts and a bit of shredded carrot.DSC02768

Bon appétit!

keeks in the kitchen: quinoa salad improvisation

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Last night, I decided to make quinoa salad, as part of my continued effort to develop skills other than pirouetting while I am on my ballet hiatus.  I didn’t have a particular line up of ingredients in mind, just a plastic cup full of uncooked quinoa and a fridge full of veggies!  So I got to work, and here’s what I came up with…

1 cup of quinoa (I used this cooking tutorial)

1/3 cup shredded carrots

1/2 can black beans

1/2 chopped red bell pepper

1/2 chopped red onion

1/2 cup chopped baby spinach

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

For the dressing, I used this amazing recipe (also where the inspiration for the salad itself came from), omitting the ginger and using agave instead of honey.  This dressing is AMAZING you guys, and I’m not the biggest fan of peanuts or anything remotely tahini-flavored.  This quinoa came out delicious!  Can’t wait to eat a little bowl of it for lunch today!

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Bon appétit!

keeks in the kitchen

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In an attempt to stay distracted busy during my “injured time”, I’ve decided to tackle some of my less-developed life skills that have since been overshadowed by ballet.  Par exaaample, I have never been a regular Top Chef.  I can make a mean grilled cheese.  Seriously.  My grilled cheeses should win awards.  But recipes longer than 3 steps (butter bread, stack [dat] cheese, grill) has always slightly intimidated me.  So, with some free time on my hands, a constantly-hungry tummy and some courage, I will take on the kitchen, one easy dish at a time.

For my first trying endeavor fun cooking experiment, I chose a Pinterest-inspired recipe for garlic roasted asparagus.  I do think it turned out pretty well, although next time I think I could ease up on the garlic just a bit.  I was having too much fun mincing it up, I guess!

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In the end it only took about 20 minutes from start to finish, but I was so hungry by the end I wasted no time serving it up (to myself) over a bed of mixed greens with some of my rommate’s famous homemade salad dressing and a nice big glass of white wine.DSC00762

Ahh, nothing like freshly prepared veggies.  Until next time, bon appétit, mes amis!

may day

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Happy first day of May, everyone!  Today I took advantage of my first real day off (no PT, no acupuncture- nothing) in months by waking up late, walking to the park, reading a whole book cover to cover (who cares if it was only 158 pages…still counts!), cooking up my first attempt at a quinoa salad and simply r e l a x i n g.  It was so nice to have some time to enjoy the outdoors and check out all of the fresh blossoms around the east side.  I even got a little accidental tan!  Score one for the injured girl.