Not only is this the first full week back to school for me, but it’s a busy week at that. Each day I have to stay late for one reason or another. There’s great things happening in my professional life; I’m not complaining about the long hours. I’m loving being at school right now. However, it becomes very difficult to maintain a work/ life/ health balance with such a demanding schedule. In the middle of weeks like this, I’m so grateful of the planning I did the weekend prior to make my healthy lifestyle as easy as possible.
I find cooking becomes even more important in busy times. Of course, there’s always the exception, but most days, after a long day at work, my body is craving a healthy home-cooked meal. Though sometimes I dread getting into the kitchen, once I get started I am so grateful I did. Maintaining good nutrition is what keeps me strong during busy times. Cooking is a way of taking care of myself. Why does it always seem to be the first thing that gets cut from our schedule?
We have time for that which we make time. I could spend that hour after work vegging in front of the television (which feels great after a long day) or I could spend that hour cooking a delicious meal (and then vegging in front of the television). Anyone can do anything for an hour. The choice is ours, and those choices become our lifestyle. If you’re feeling right now like it’s impossible to take an hour to cook for yourself after a long day, try this envisioning technique. Close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths, and let go of the idea it’s impossible. Now, envision a day when you come home from work and for one hour you cook yourself a meal. See yourself in the kitchen, preparing food, washing the dishes as you go, eating and feeling nourished by this healthy meal.
A healthy lifestyle is definitely possible, should you decide it is. What did you choose to eliminate from your evening? What habits are you choosing to prioritize? Are these habits adding or retracting from the lifestyle you envision for yourself?
And, you know, incredible recipes don’t have to take an hour. This wonderful dish with crusted lamb is done in 45 minutes!
Since transitioning my diet to more plant-based, I’ve become very selective of the animal products I choose to consume. These days I’m having milk with my coffee and meat sometimes with dinner. I’d love to cut out the milk completely, but, after trying a handful of alternatives, it came down to choosing whole milk over a vegan creamer with artificial sweeteners. I cut those sweeteners from my diet years ago and I have never looked back.
Everything in moderation, right? If I’m going for dessert, it’s going to be decadent. If i’m going for meat, its going to be delicious. This lamb did not disappoint! A nice crunchy crust with a great flavor, and a perfect compliment to our favorite part of this dish, the tomatoes. I’m obsessed with these tomatoes – you can find them in Margherita Flatbread, Summertime Pesto Zucchini and our weeknight favorite Chicken & Tomatoes . I have been known to make them by themselves and eat them from a bowl. So delicious, and so many health benefits.
As always, please leave me comments below should you find the time in your busy day to recreate some of the recipes here. Have a healthy rest of your week!
Mustard Rosemary Crusted Lamb & Balsamic TomatoesPrint Recipe
- 4 lamb chops
- 1 cup panko
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 1 1/2 tsp ground mustard
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp white wine
- 1/2 cup dry couscous
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Microgreens (for garnish)
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Bring the lamb to room temperature.
In a food processor, combine the panko, rosemary leaves (stems discarded), garlic and mustard. Salt and pepper to taste. Process until uniform. Add olive oil through the chute until paste has formed.
Heat an oven safe pan over medium high heat. Use a paper towel to dry the sides of the lamb chops. Press paste onto one side of the lamb. When the pan is hot, add a little olive oil. Place lamb paste side down and immediately press the remaining paste on the backside.
Cook for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown. Do not move lamb until 3 minutes have passed to ensure paste sticks. Flip and repeat until golden brown.
Heat another large skillet over high heat while the lamb is cooking, and preheat the oven to 350. Heat a small pot, cook cous cous according to package directions.
When the second pan is very hot, add the tomatoes. cook tossing around the pan every couple minutes, until tomatoes have toasted spots, about 10 minutes. Add a little olive oil and toss tomatoes to coat in pan. Salt. Add vinegar, sugar and wine, lower heat to medium high and cook, uncovered, for about 10 minutes. Mixture should reduce to about half.
When both sides of lamb reach a nice golden brown, place pan in the oven and cook for 6-10 minutes until desired doneness. I like 145F for medium rare.
When cous cous is done, toss in a little olive oil and lemon juice. Set aside to cool.
When tomatoes are done, salt and pepper to taste.
To serve, place cous cous on the plate. Place tomatoes over. Lay lamb over all, and tuck micro greens around the plate.