2.19.2014

Flavorful Tahini and Grain Salad

I hope everyone's hump day is going well.  Last night after prepping my breakfast, lunch and dinner for today, I went to yoga at my gym.  It was the perfect way to relax and get quite a sweat going... I just may be becoming a yogi!  Don't worry, this is first and foremost a recipe blog, but I thought I would share with you my experiences practicing yoga.

Over last fall I found that I was beginning to have some tightness and pain in my right hip.  It would have a light pop when I made certain movements and be sorest when I first got up in the morning and when I found myself sitting or standing for longer periods of time.  Since Kevin and I have started going to the gym more in the last month, the hip pain has become more noticeable.  So, I have been desperate to find some relief that didn't involve pain medicine.

I met a friend of a friend this weekend who went to school to be a sports physical therapist, and he suggested that I do a pigeon stretch (in yoga) at least three times a day for 35 seconds each, as well as do more lunges to build up the muscles surrounding my hip and buttocks.

Then, yesterday in yoga I also asked my instructor what she would suggest I do.  She felt my hip bones and noticed that my right hip is 1 inch shorter than the other and that it would take building my core muscles and stretching to fix the popping problem and pain.  She too suggested the pigeon pose and to consciously throughout the day try to lift my core to create space in that hip bone.  Hopefully a combination of both the sports trainer and yoga instructor's advice will get me back into shape.  On top of that, losing a bit of weight to not have so much strain on all of my joints is sure to help.

Last night I prepped a salad for lunch today that is one of my new favorite recipes I have made in a long time!  It is delicious, gets me to eat my greens, and can be versatile to whatever grain and bean ingredients I have prepped on hand.

Flavorful Tahini and Grain Salad
Servings: 4-6
Time: 15 minutes
Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of cooked grain (I used brown rice, but would love to try it with bulgar, barley, farro, quinoa, cous cous, etc.)
  • 1-1/2 cups cooked beans or legumes (I used 1 can of chickpeas, but I would love to try it with brown lentils or even green peas.)
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
  • Tahini Dressing
    • Juice from 1 lemon
    • 1/2 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
    • 2 Tbsp sweetener (I used brown rice syrup, but you could also use date paste or agave syrup.)
    • 2 Tbsp dijon mustard
    • 2 tsp minced garlic
    • 1 tsp cumin
    • water to thin to consistency
    • black pepper to taste
Instructions:
  1. Place all of the dressing ingredients into a small bowl and whisk until well combined, adding water as needed to achieve a thinner creamy dressing.
  2. Place all of the other salad ingredients into a large bowl and stir until well mixed.
  3. Pour all of the dressing on top of the rice mixture, and mix until all of the salad is well coated.  Add pepper to taste.
  4. Serve chilled by itself or on top of your choice of green.
Amy's Notes:

As I said earlier, this rice salad can be very versatile depending on the type of grain or bean/lentil that you use.  Next time I would like to make it with farrow and lentils.  Mmmm!  This time I made it with brown rice and chickpeas because that is what I had on hand.  I served mine over a bed of well chopped green leaf lettuce.

Last night I returned to my Mom a container of Tupperware I had borrowed, and in it I gave her the rest of this salad that I did not use for my side salad for dinner and lunch today.... all I can think now is, "Why didn't I keep it?!"  Enjoy it this time, Mom <3, because next time I make this, I'm not sure if I will be so willing to share ;).

2 comments:

  1. Just made this tonight and it is so delicious! Thanks!

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  2. I made this for lunch of Wednesday - so so so tasty! I LOVE the dressing - what a wonderful flavour combo :D

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