So day three after Thanksgiving…the Christmas tree is up and my kiddos will be expecting Christmas every morning now! So glad that our little shelf-elf has paid us an early visit to help my boys keep the holiday behavior frenzy in check! (Thank you Chippy!)
I am trying to transition quickly from one holiday to the next, but finding it a challenge as my refrigerator is still overflowing with Thanksgiving left-overs and my beautiful fall flower arrangements are still flourishing in their vases. I am distracted with excited thoughts of the holidays but also a bit flattened by the extensive cooking and baking that has gone on in the last week; however, I still have 3 little boys who are ALWAYS hungry! “LUNCH!!!”
With all the hustle of the holidays, it seems eating “easy to grab food” becomes the need and acceptable norm. Although grab-n-go food does allow for more time to SHOP and WRAP and DECORATE and PLAN, it tends to leave you without the lasting energy and nutrients to really fuel you for a happy holiday season, and can leave your kiddos an irritable, whiny, hyper mess more prone to illness…and we all know how that can bust a holiday.
Because my oldest, autistic son has had anywhere up to 35 IgG food allergies for the last 8 years, drive-thrus and frozen meals have not been an option for us. Some of that is changing though as more and more gluten-free, allergy-free foods are becoming available in stores and restaurants in combination with his incredible reduction in his number of food sensitivities. However, my experience in restaurants has been one that often leaves my kiddos with dark circles under their eyes, stomach pains, digestive upset, irritability, and headaches ... enough to still make me shy away from the “easy way” out of the kitchen.
So, what to do when you can’t go through the drive-thru but still need food fast? You make that fast food in your kitchen.
Today in my kitchen, that’s exactly what I did.
Upon hearing the boys’ shouts of what could only be explained as shear starvation, my first impulse was to look in the refrigerator for a frozen pizza for their lunch. (I need a break…What??? I still haven’t cleaned the breakfast dishes from the pumpkin pancakes, and there is laundry, decorating, and Christmas cards!) Then, I felt that tug…yes the tug of guilt, or perhaps it’s smarts…but I chose not to open that freezer. Instead, I quickly prepared a nutrient dense dish that in all honesty took less time than it would have ever taken to cook that pizza!
Quinoa Pasta with Broccoli Curry Coconut Cream Sauce
What’s so special about this dish? Well for starters…It tastes DeeeLISH! It has the same creamy comfort of homemade macaroni-n-cheese but without the dreaded casein (dairy protein) and well, it has so much more flavor!
Other pluses -
- It only took 12 minutes
- No measuring
- A one pot meal
- NON GMO
- Gluten-Free, Casein-Free, Soy-Free
- Antiinflammatory benefits
- Antifungal benefits
- Rich in vitamins , minerals, healthy fats, and fiber
The bonus benefit…no mommy guilt.
OK, so you may not be a pro in the kitchen, but seriously you can just throw this all together with confidence…even if all you know how to do is boil water!
So, start with a pot full of water and bring it to a boil. Then add your quinoa pasta (you could also use lentil pasta and feel just as good about the nutrients). After 5 minutes, throw in some organic (fresh or frozen) broccoli florets. Lower temperature just enough so it all doesn’t ooze over the top of the pot. Keep cooking for another 6-7 minutes or until veggies are done to your liking. Drain and then put pasta back into the pot. Add one can of organic coconut milk. Stir on med-low heat. Add in yellow curry powder, garlic powder, and sea salt to taste. EAT!
Hope your Holiday Season kicks off with a healthy start!
If you are in need of more quick allergy-free food options for you and your kiddos, check out this chapter in the Air Diet!