Earth Day is quickly approaching (Thursday)! This week, I am trying to not use any plastic bags for my lunch; I typically use one or two everyday, and then throw them away. I am opting for reusable containers, and I hope I can carry this over past Earth Week. What will you do to celebrate our planet this week? I’d love to hear your ideas!
Sunday was a beautiful day. My dad and I enjoyed a quick run on the trail, and we decided to grill out. I’ll share the two side dishes we made, which are two of my favorites: sautéed bell peppers and steamed potatoes with parsley. Both are colorful and delicious additions to any meal, together or on their own. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!
Sautéed Red, Orange, and Yellow Bell Peppers
The first time I had sautéed bell peppers was in Italy. My aunt Claudia made them when my family and I came to visit her and my uncle Steve. Now, whenever we visit, she always makes them because she knows they are my favorite! My dad makes them at home, too. They are perfect as a side, but can also be served over brown rice for a meal (sometimes we add natural Italian sausage from the Co-op, and for lunch today I had them with quinoa). Anyway you serve them, the bell peppers are colorful & sweet, and when sautéed in extra-virgin olive oil they become soft and even more flavorful.
For this recipe, 5 bell peppers were used: 2 red, 2 orange and 1 yellow. This is more than enough for 3, but we like to have leftovers for lunches at my house. For a smaller batch, 3 bell peppers can be used (one of each color!). Other ingredients: extra-virgin olive oil and salt (I use coarse-grained Kosher salt). To make the peppers, first de-vein and de-seed each pepper. Slice the peppers into about 1 inch pieces, and place in a sauté pan that has been well coated with extra-virgin olive oil. Add a generous pinch of salt, but you can always add more later. Start the peppers on a medium heat, and allow to cook, stirring every few minutes. After about 5 minutes, cover the peppers, and uncover to stir about every 3 minutes until the peppers are “slimy.” Add salt, if needed, and enjoy!
Steamed Potatoes with Parsley
These potatoes are a great alternative to the everyday mashed or baked potato. The Yukon potatoes are almost a bit sweet, which I love, but red potatoes or fingerlings would be great, too. This dish is simple and quick!
Wash the potatoes, scrubbing if need be. Don’t peel–extra nutrients! Cut the potatoes into about 1-1.5 inch chunks. Steam the potatoes until fork tender. When tender, place the potatoes in a bowl and coat with extra-virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Add chopped parsley, so the potatoes are well coated with green. Adding some cilantro would also be delish!
Coming soon…my dad’s pasta! Have a sunny day!
All for now,
P.S. For more recipes and healthy eating tips, check out my friend Sara’s blog. She’s a registered dietician and the new girls’ track coach at Solon. She recently completed the Boston Marathon! Congrats, Sara!