Okay...so I know Thanksgiving is just a few days away. I should be posting something to be served on the big day, right? Well hear me out. For me, Thanksgiving is about tradition. I have the same menu every year and look forward to knowing exactly what to expect on the table (or in my case, on our spiral staircase that we use as a tiered serving table in my tiny Brooklyn apartment). I know tradition isn't for everyone, but when it comes to Thanksgiving it is for me!
So my favorite part is before and after. Before for the Thanksgiving themed potlucks, work parties, etc when you aren't necessarily making a huge feast. After for, well, the LEFTOVERS! Before and after give me way more wiggle room for creativity. I love it.
Just last week I was talking to my friend Anais on a train ride home after a work event. She came up with a wonderful idea to tell the other an ingredient to make something with and we had one week to do it. I told her to make something with zucchini (can't wait to find out what it is!) and she told me to make a savory dish with mango.
Honestly, I had been feeling like I was at sort of at a standstill with post ideas. But this little exercise was just what I needed to get my creative juices flowing again! And let me tell you...I made a savory mango dish that I will certainly be making again.
I really wasn't sure what I wanted my next post to be. All I knew was I wanted something super easy. I ran a half marathon over the weekend (my first! I'm now addicted) and needless to say I've been very sore since. So the less time spent on my feet doing anything - even cooking - the better.
While grocery shopping a couple days ago I bought some crunchy sesame pita sticks for no particular reason other than they were in front of my face and looked good. I thought maybe I could munch on them throughout the week with some hummus or guacamole or something. After getting home from work today I remembered the sticks. So I looked in my cabinets and figured out what I wanted to make. I took the main ingredient of hummus (chickpeas) and the main ingredient of guacamole (avocado) and combined them in this ridiculously easy, super healthy, absolutely delicious dip.
More so than any year in the past I feel the need to be healthy. Not for the fad of it, but for my well-being. It feels so good being healthy! Though the holidays are often a time for us to indulge (I for one am a firm believer in not holding back), I think having at least one guilt-free dish isn't a bad thing.
When I think Easter, I think boiled eggs, ham, rolls, and spring vegetables and fruit. I love a good, fresh fruit salad or fruit platter. And I love when it is paired with a creamy dip. Unfortunately those dips are full of cream and processed sugars, and when you are trying to cut back on the bad stuff it isn't exactly the best for you. So I decided to make a healthier version that still gives you that tangy goodness and delicious flavor.
If there is one thing I will always make homemade instead of buying prepackaged it's salsa. Not to diss the jarred stuff found in your typical grocery store chip aisle, but nothing comes close to that homemade flavor! The only effort really required to make it is some chopping/dicing and then the will power/patience to let it rest before devouring.
I'm all for the classic style salsa, but being in Australia I just had to take advantage and make a mango version. So make this, close your eyes, and pretend you're on the beach enjoying every last bite. And make sure to tuck this recipe into safe-keeping for summer, when you actually are at the beach!
Ali is a Brooklyn based blogger and Certified Health Coach with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, providing you with recipes to inspire you to cook more at home! She is a firm believer in knowing that eating healthy can be made easy and inexpensive if you simply know how to cook and understands that for the average person there needs to be balance between "healthy" and "unhealthy". Whether you are looking for easy weeknight recipes, delicious snacks, or want to try something new, Ali's recipes are easy to follow at all skill levels! For more info about Ali and her offerings, check out the About page.