Tired & Hungry

Bismillahi Ar Rahmani Ar Rahim

Assalamu Alaikum!

After my workouts my appetite spikes. Pretty sure it’s normal, and the trick is knowing what NOT to eat.

As women, I feel like our emotions in daily life have us steering towards rich, comforting or just plain bad-for-you foods.

Yesterday, I was at a garage to get an oil change for my car. I gave into a moment of temptation and bought a bag of not-so-healthy snack food from a vending machine. And I regretted it big time.

I think sometimes we go for foods that are rich, high in calories, high in carbs, etc because it’s just more satisfying.

But the truth is a light dish can be just as satisfying!

I’ve been on a major salad kick, lately. I consider myself different from most people because I don’t put any kind of dressing on my salads. Sometimes, I even like to eat salad with my fingers. Whole grape tomatoes, wheels of cucumbers, spears of peppers, a crunch of crisp greens, a burst of sweet fruit, and a sharp bite of a little cheese. I know it sounds stupid, but it allows me to connect with what I’m eating, and it’s no longer a fork-to-food-to-mouth mechanical thing anymore (or maybe it’s because I’m Pakistani, and we eat everything with our fingers).

Alhamdulillah, it also helps me have control over what I eat AND it makes me appreciate exactly what I’m eating. And who needs that greasy, creamy stuff? It totally makes the point of a salad moot. And it masks all of the natural deliciousness of the real stuff in the salad.

Here’s a picture of a salad I made for my sister some time ago:

20130113_135340There’s some grilled chicken, strawberries, blackberries, pomegranate seeds, pear slices, and a modest sprinkling of mozzarella cheese, all on a bed of fresh, crisp baby spinach.

No fattening ocean of dressing. No overwhelming tang of vinaigrette (although, done right, it can be good, but not for me).

Try and eat this with your fingers! You’ll have a blast, I  promise. If you have a spouse, imagine how romantic it would be to pop a pomegranate seed, a blackberry, or a lovingly folded leaf of spinach into their mouths?

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww. Go on, you know you want to.

Ahem.

Anyway, earlier tonight after I crawled off the elliptical machine and Gollum-ed my way up the stairs to my kitchen, I had only one thing in mind.

Can you guess what it was?

Salad.

I tenderly opened the door to my fridge, and grabbed the box of arugula, a glorious jar of marinated artichoke hearts, feta cheese crumbles, deli-style turkey (halal for moi, s’il vous plait), unsalted sunflower seeds, a single button mushroom and a quarter of a pear.

I took about a handful and a half of arugula, two artichoke hearts (shook off the excess marinade and then ripped it up into pieces), a little sprinkling of feta cheese, sliced my pear up into little triangles, tore up two little slices of turkey, tore up the mushroom, and threw in a sprinkle of sunflower seeds.

And I grabbed a fork because sometimes I don’t eat salad with my fingers. And then I ate it.

Alhamdulillah.

Oh, man. Words cannot express how good it was. Arugula has a bite to it. It’s a bit bitter, but not too much. If you’ve ever eaten a mint leaf straight off the stem then it kind of tastes like that. Combined with sugary pear slices, tangy feta, and the rest of the ingredients (I’ll ease up on the adjectives because I don’t want you to get too hungry), it’s pretty much all you’d ever want from a salad. And no dressing! The artichokes take care of that nicely (go easy on these, too, please!).

I made this salad a few days ago as well, except I also added some carrots and used some imitation crab meat instead of the turkey. I have a hunch that the turkey is probably better for you, but I could be wrong.

So…anyway.

Any salad that HAS to be blogged about has gotta be pretty incredible, right? Says the woman who posts puppy and cat gifs.

Ok.

That’s all!

Nesha

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