Monday, July 30, 2012

Beet and Brown Rice Burgers

Beets… I’ve been trying to like beets for years. I think they’re pretty and I know they’re good for me, but they taste like dirt—and I just don’t like the taste of dirt (and yes, I have washed, cooked and peeled them).

Well guess what world, I like these—a lot. In fact, I like these so much that we’ve been getting fresh beets from our CSA on a weekly basis just so we can make them again and again.

(Adapted from Cooking Light)

½ cup brown rice
small bunch beets
½ cup bread crumbs (we use gluten-free rice crumbs)
½ cup chopped walnuts, toasted
¼ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
¼ cup diced shallot (~1 small shallot. If you have extra shallot, slice, sauté and serve on top of the burgers
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 eggs
olive oil
goat cheese log, sliced

1. Cook the rice.

2. Cook the beets (Preheat oven to 350°. Wash beets and place them in a baking dish with about ½-inch of water. Cover the dish with a lid or tinfoil and cook for about 45 minutes, until the beets are poke-able. Once the beets are cool enough to handle, peel and dice them.)

3. Turn the oven to 400° and place a baking sheet in the oven.

4. Combine rice, beets, bread crumbs, walnuts, parsley and shallots in a large bowl.

5. In a small bowl, combine the eggs and mustard. Whisk.

6. Dump the egg mixture into the rice-beet extravaganza and stir until well-combined.

7. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.

8. Make burgers. Here’s how we do it: Spritz a ramekin (small dessert-size) with olive oil and then pack the burger mixture into said ramekin. Carefully flip the ramekin over into the skillet.

9. Cook each burger for 2 minutes, then carefully move them from the pan to the preheated baking sheet, placing them cooked side up.

10. Once all your burgers are on the hot baking sheet, top each one with a round of goat cheese and place in the oven.

11. Cook for 2 minutes or so, until the cheese softens. Serve.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Doggy Fro Yo Cubes

Makai used to think ice cubes were the coolest things ever. See exhibit A:

Now, even on the hottest days, he shuns plain ol’ ice, but will gobble up one of these fro yo cubes in a flash.

16 oz. (or so) plain yogurt (We used organic fat-free yogurt because, ya know, Makai is spoiled)
1 banana, mashed
1 cup (or so) frozen berries

1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well.

2. Smoosh the mixture into an ice cube tray (or two) and cover with plastic wrap.

3. Freeze.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Recovery Smoothies

As all endurance athletes know (or are learning), recovery is key. There’s plenty of back and forth about the benefits of ice baths, compression clothing and post-race massage, but it’s pretty well accepted that what you put in your body after a race or hard workout really matters. Of course, I haven’t always known this. After swimming or water polo in high school and college, I’d gorge on whatever the dining hall offered. When I first got into triathlons, I pretty much neglected recovery altogether. Eventually, I started using commercial recovery drinks…and now I’m all about the recovery smoothie—and I’m pretty sure I’m recovering faster than ever before.

My ingredients change with the contents of our freezer, but overall, the recipe looks something like this:

Disclaimer: I don’t measure the fruit or the juice, so the amounts listed below are just guesses.

Combine the following in a blender:
1 banana
~2 cups of organic frozen fruit (mango, pineapple, peaches, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries*, blackberries*, whatever floats your boat)
1 tbsp. hemp protein
1 tbsp. ground flaxseed
Water or cranberry-pomegranate juice** (Enough to reach about halfway up the fruit)
optional: 1 tsp. gelatinized maca and a glob of agave syrup (Maca tastes kind of burnt to me so I need the agave syrup to mask the flavor.)

1. Blend.
2. Pour.
3. Drink.

*Raspberries and blackberries can be annoyingly seedy.
**If you use pineapple, I recommend using water. If you use peaches, I recommend using juice. If you’re using pineapples and peaches, go with water.