Last summer I wrote a piece for elephant called Dead Reckoning: an Inventory.
It was about coming to terms with aging and the way it affects our bodies. Namely, when it comes to weight. Around the same time, I wrote a piece for my personal blog, Cirque du Malaise, called The Small Bowl Diet, a tongue in cheek missive about a diet I invented that lets you eat anything you want, as long as it can fit in a tiny little bowl. I was sort of kidding at the time, but actually, I thought, maybe there is something to this “small bowl” idea?
I’ve never been a dieter. I don’t like being bossed around—even by myself. If I want to eat something, I want to eat it. What harm has a little bit of chocolate Coco Bliss ever done, anyway?
Key words: little bit.
So I decided to eat my own words, so to speak, and try this so-called Small Bowl Diet I had made up. (And “made up” is a stretch, since essentially it’s just good old-fashioned portion control.) But I took it one step further: I started cataloging things I cooked and recipes I made up on Instagram. One thing led to another, and before I knew it, I had basically written a cookbook in my spare time.
The theme of this, my very first cookbook in the Small Bowl oeuvre, is Cooking for One: Easy-cook Recipes for singles who like good food and want to eat healthy without making huge amounts that will go to waste and without having to buy a lot of expensive esoteric condiments and other ingredients that will languish in the fridge forever. Just because you are cooking for one does not mean you have to shovel frozen lasagna down your gullet while standing over the sink watching episodes of Mindy and New Girl.
I’ve been writing for elephant for a few years now, so in honor of the audience over here I wanted to offer you one recipe from my book. A teaser, if you will. (If you think it sounds yummy, please go to Amazon to download an even longer preview and consider buying and reviewing my book!)
Antioxidant-filled Kale + Pear + Pepper Salad (with Joy-filled Bacon)
Kale is so good for you. So good, in fact, that in my opinion (and experience) it’s okay to top it with a little fresh bacon from time to time. Bacon gives you the protein (and joy!) to get through the rest of the day, and kale is chock full of antioxidants and vitamins. If you prefer to keep it vegetarian, just leave off the bacon, or use Fakin’ Bacon. (Just as good, really.) The dressing gives this salad a refreshing tang that is grounded by bits o’ bacon or fakin’.
Time to prepare: 20 minutes
- Healthy handful of kale, chopped into small strips
- 1 ripe pear, chopped into small strips
- ½ a red bell pepper, chopped into small strips
- Small half-a-handful of a high quality feta or goat cheese (toasted sunflower seeds are a good alternative if you’re vegan)
- 3 or 4 strips of bacon
- ¼ cup of cider vinegar (any vinegar will do in a pinch)
- Few spoonfuls of fresh orange or lemon juice
- ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- Salt and pepper
How to Prepare:
- Place bacon strips on a cookie sheet or in a cast iron skillet, and bake at 420° until fairly well crisped.
- In the meantime, prep the kale, pear and pepper and toss together.
- Throw in the feta or goat cheese.
- Whisk together dressing ingredients and toss the salad.
- Remove bacon from oven, let drain, cool on a paper towel.
- Chop the bacon into tiny bits and sprinkle on salad.
Cooking For One is a Kindle ebook with 24 recipes and plenty of tips. And on January 1st and 2nd it is completely free to download!
After which, it will sell for $2.99, per Kindle’s standard pricing. (By the way, you don’t have to have a Kindle to download and read Kindle books—you can also easily download the Kindle app for your iPhone or iPad, which is what us loyal Mac girls do.)
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Ed: Kate B.