Posts Tagged ‘vegan’

{Macrobiotic March} What is a Macro Plate?

A Macro Plate is the quintessential macrobiotic meal.

ozu macro plate 400x224 {Macrobiotic March} What is a Macro Plate?

It’s a perfectly balanced plate of macrobiotic foods. My favorite macro plate consists of…

10 macro plate souen extra kabocha1 400x265 {Macrobiotic March} What is a Macro Plate?

  • Brown rice
  • Beans or tofu
  • Seaweed (hijiki is probably the most common)
  • Steamed greens (kale, collards, chard)
  • Steamed broccoli
  • Steamed carrot or sweet potato
  • KABOCHA or other squash
  • Dipping sauce (I like tahini-based ones)

What does perfectly balanced mean exactly? This goes back to the concept of yin and yang that I touched on earlier this month. Foods (and everything, really) can have yin qualities (expansive, cooling, moist) or yang qualities (contractive, warming, dry). We should try to avoid things that are way off on either side of the spectrum. Let’s go through the list of foods in a macro plate…

  • Brown rice –> this whole grain has almost equal parts yin and yang.
  • Beans, tofu, and tempeh –> these foods are also in the middle of the yin to yang spectrum.
  • Sea vegetables –> in the middle of the spectrum.
  • Leafy green vegetables (greens) and round vegetables (I guess broccoli?) –> in the middle.
  • Root vegetables –> in the middle of the spectrum.
  • Kabocha / squash –> Do these count as ’round’ veggies? They are also in the midde.
  • Tahini dipping sauce –> nuts are in the middle, but miso (salty – which I like in dipping sauce as well) starts to veer to the yang side of the spectrum.

Overall, a very balanced plate. If you were wondering, fish is a moderate food, though other meats (poultry, red meat, and eggs) are yang. Dairy is on the yin side.

I made a semi-macro plate just last night. I say semi because it had a fried egg on it and as I noted above, eggs are yang. Eggs are even more yang than poultry because they compress all the energy of a chicken into one small egg. (If that makes sense. It does in my head.)

semi macro plate 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} What is a Macro Plate?

This was…

  • Sauteed greens
  • Brown rice (hiding)
  • Avocado
  • Kabocha squash
  • Fried egg + ground sesame on top (it had a runny yolk – it’s not popped in the picture though)
  • 2 umeboshi plums (top right)
  • Tahini drizzzzzled on top

Tonight (no picture) I had a macro-ish meal from the nearby Chinese takeout place. It was just scallops and veggies in a very light white sauce over white rice.

Even when I’m not trying my dinner end up kind of macrobiotic-ish these days. I like it.

SO – Macrobiotic March is wrapping up. I have covered a lot of topics but are there any other questions at all that you guys have about macrobiotics that I haven’t answered yet? Even if I don’t know the answer I’d be happy to research it and give my thoughts.

But don’t worry – just because Macro March is almost over doesn’t mean I won’t be doing macrobiotic posts. I loved posting this month and I will definitely continue to talk about my macro finds.

P.S. I updated my Macrobiotics page – just in time for Macro March to end icon wink {Macrobiotic March} What is a Macro Plate?

Whirlwind of a(n Almost Spring) Weekend

Instead of another macrobiotics post, I thought I might share what I was up to this weekend. I am so glad springtime is finally around the corner.

Friday night I was able to leave work by 6pm. I meandered home and cooked up some sweet potato gnocchi (Trader Joe’s) for myself. Bobby ended up having to work late so I was on my own. I just played around with a couple of website ideas I’ve been thinking of… overall a relaxing evening. I also read The Help (my current book). It’s really great; I definitely recommend it. I have not seen the movie yet but I will when I finish the novel.

the help book Whirlwind of a(n Almost Spring) Weekend

The Help was really popular back in the summer of 2010. I remember being on our honeymoon in Maui and it seemed like everyone around the pool was reading it as they basked in the sun. At the time I think I was going through some Michael Crichton books and the Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series and forgot to put The Help on my list. I found the hardcover copy at the thrift shop last week for $4 and picked it up and I’ve been reading it every spare moment since.

Saturday… we got up early and I cooked us brunch. I made myself an omelette. I happened to bust out the brewer’s yeast and my hubby discovered that it’s his new favorite food. So since then he has been putting it on every meal.

brewers yeast Whirlwind of a(n Almost Spring) Weekend

This is the brewer’s yeast that I have. Apparently it is made from beets so it is not bitter like normal brewer’s yeast. It has about 40 different vitamins and minerals; if you want to see the whole list (nutrition facts), click {HERE}.

On Saturday afternoon I got a bunch of house stuff done. I put up a shelf that has been sitting on our counter on the end of our cabinets (it was out of stock and came in after renovations were done, so I had to install it myself). I put up some wall shelves to use as a spice rack. I painted the trim of the doorframe in the bathroom. I think we also had a late lunch at some point (random leftovers).

By the time I finished all that, it was nearly 5pm, and Bobby and I headed off to Pure for a yoga class. I was expecting a gentle flow, but the class was killer! Bobby is sore today; I’m not, but I was exhausted after class last night (Saturday).

After yoga we had a friend over and cooked in (tofu scramble, rice, and massaged kale salad; Ben and Jerry’s for dessert). We also started to watch Girls. Have you guys seen this show? What do you think? I’ve only seen two episodes and I think I like it so far. I like the fact that the characters look like real people and not perfect Hollywood people.

Today we were supposed to go to Staten Island (brunch with a friend) but we ended up rescheduling. After brunch at home (leftover tofu scramble, omelette), Bobby worked more while I did more house stuff (fixing up my paint job from yesterday, cleaning). Around 2pm we took a Zipcar up to Westchester just for fun. We ended up in Sleepy Hollow and Tarrytown. Got lunch at this place: Sweetgrass Grill.

sweetgrass grits 299x400 Whirlwind of a(n Almost Spring) Weekend

(Grits pic source – New Forker)

mushroom soup 400x400 Whirlwind of a(n Almost Spring) Weekend

(Thank you Foodspotting for the soup picture. I forgot to snap pics before digging in.)

I got the mushroom soup (with a few crispy kale chips on top) and Bobby got the Grits with poached eggs and goat cheese. The grits also had mushrooms, spinach, and essence of tomato which is just some kind of tomato-y juice. We shared with each other. Both dishes were incredible! Bobby got a beer as well (I drove, ha).

After wandering around Tarrytown more (we got coffee {HERE}), we headed home, but stopped at Trader Joe’s for a major haul on the way back. When you are a New Yorker and you have a car you can bring home groceries in, you don’t hold back.

We cooked in again (using the TJ’s stuff we just got) and then (as if we didn’t do enough this weekend), we headed off to Terminal 5 for a concert. We saw Alt-J. They recently won the Mercury Prize. I thought they were great! Bobby was not as happy as I was with the show but I think he enjoyed it overall.

I think that is all of it. Finally, finally, we are home (though we stopped for a slice – Bobby – and some garlic knots – both of us – on the way back). And now I think it is sleepy time! There is a slight chance I will be up early enough tomorrow to go to yoga before work. A very very slight chance. Anyway, here are some questions of the day…

What was the last concert you saw? What were you up to this weekend? Do you like brewer’s yeast?

{Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

Those of you who have been following my blog since the beginning may have noticed the shift from eating at home often (probably 5 nights a week) to eating out… a lot. The shift happened slowly over time as I transitioned from my first job in CA, to freelancing in CA (part time), to working full time again when we moved to NYC, to working more and more! I’m not complaining about work. My career and work are going better than I could have ever dreamed. I love my job and I love my coworkers. I am challenged every day with real problems that I can solve (I’m a programmer – a software engineer / web developer).

BUT – with working so much, I just don’t make the time to cook at home. (Though I am sure I could find more time if I really wanted to.)

So I try to find healthy options for eating out.

Keeping with the theme of Macrobiotic March, here are some of my favorite macro meals I have eaten (out) lately. And one macro meal that I made.

(I use Instagram and an iPhone 4 – not 4s - for most of my eating out pics… hence the mediocre images.)

A few weeks ago I got lunch with an internet friend (we go back years now) at a vegetarian restaurant in midtown called Zen Palate. The lunch and the company were great. This is what I ordered:

zen palate lunch special 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

The dish is called Shredded Melody. It’s shredded soy protein stir-fried with celery, carrots, zucchini and pine nuts in a light garlic sauce. It came with a brown and red rice mix and 2 spring rolls. I ate most at the restuarant and had the leftovers at my desk a few hours later.

Another night, after dinner at Souen, Bobby and I shared the Cocoa Creamy Parfait: cocoa mousse with vanilla soy cream and granola.

macrobiotic cocoa pudding mousse souen 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

Really delicious. I do prefer their scones though…

Another night I got takeout from Souen because I was in a rush. I had this meal after a vigorous yoga class at Pure:

macro plate takeout souen 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

Takeout Macro Plate: an ideal blance of steamed greens (collards usually), vegetables (carrots, broccoli), brown rice, beans (chickpeas here – my favorite), and hijiki seaweed.

I also got this dessert the same night…

macrobiotic scone souen cranberry orange 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

A Macrobiotic Scone – the cranberry orange version. As you can see, I was trying to practice portion control by only putting half on my plate. This failed and I ate the second half too. Very much worth it.

Sometimes I do cook at home. One night I made this healthy fried rice variation:

macrobiotic fried rice kabocha brussels 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

Homemade macrobiotic fried rice with Trader Joe’s Healthy 8 Veggie Mix, Brussels sprouts, sesame seeds, and some teriyaki sauce. Steamed kabocha on the side, and yes I had seconds. I think this was another post-yoga meal.

Another night Bobby and I went to Hu Kitchen, a new paleo restaurant near his office. Hu Kitchen is on 5th Ave between 13th and 14th streets (right near Souen). Hu says, ‘For us, getting back to eating like humans means eating foods we would find in nature or foods minimally processed using only basic, mechanical methods.

hu kitchen farmers plate cauliflower butternut squash greens 400x400 {Macrobiotic March} Some Macrobiotic Meals (at home and out!)

I got The Herbivore: 3 veggie sides of the day. I picked creamed cauliflower with coconut milk, roasted butternut squash, and sauteed greens. That little brown thing you see is grain-free bread. All of it – absolutely amazing. I could have licked the plate. It’s a little pricey – this dish was $10 and it was not that big. We ended up getting a paleo dessert, too (chocolate chia pudding) but the picture didn’t come out well. It looked like ass so you will just have to trust me that it tasted delicious.

SO – that’s what I have been eating lately. I actually have some more macro meals but I will save them for another time. I have to get to work!

Couple other things I wanted to mention:

  • I have accidentally been pescetarian this month except for 1 meal (a pasta dish this weekend).
  • I have had diet soda only 2 times this month. (!) One day that I had it, later on I found myself at the cafe downstairs buying a cookie – the only time I was craving sugar in a few weeks. Coincidence? I don’t think so. I think diet soda makes you crave real sugar.
  • Bobby and I are planning on doing vegetarian April! (Vegetarian = pescetarian for us.)
  • Elise @ Hungry Hungry Hippie had a macrobiotic-inspired meal the other day. MMM kale.
  • Heather made those yummy cookies I linked to last week.

Have you had any delicious macrobiotic meals lately? Are you a diet soda person? Do you eat meat and/or fish, or are you vegetarian or vegan?

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