A food I had a love/hate relationship with for many years. But after realizing they don’t have to be glorified breakfast cake or particularly even eaten at breakfast (which also isn’t my go-to), I’ve fully embraced pancakes in all the wonderful ways.
This version is just about as whole-food as you can get, with oats, beets, banana, eggs, and not a lot else. These days, I tend to add on greens and maybe an additional egg to make pancake meals a balanced meal.
Hope you enjoy!
One more big / little thing
I’ve decided to share most of my recipes in my newsletter going forward this year, rather than publishing all of them here on the blog portion of the website. If you enjoy regularly receiving recipes from me as well as focused nutrition topics, I encourage you to sign up to receive my nutrition newsletter.
Beet Banana Pancakes, serves 2
Inspired by David of Green Kitchen Stories Prep: 40-60 minutes to roast beets (can be done ahead) | Cook: 15 minutes
2 eggs 1 banana, peeled 1 cup /100 gr rolled oats 2 – 4 Tbs. filtered water, or more as needed ⅛ tsp. salt ¼ tsp. baking powder 2 medium / 100 gr cooked beets coconut oil or ghee for frying
To Serve: 1-2 tsp. olive oil 1-2 handfuls of greens 1 fried or scrambled egg, for each serving
Prep ahead: Wash and halve the beets and wrap them in foil. Roast in a 400 degree F oven until soft, about 40 minutes. You can prepare more while you’re at for other meals or snacks.
To make Pancakes: Crack the eggs into a blender; add the banana, water, oats, salt and baking powder and blend until smooth.
Then pour into a bowl. Grate the cooked beets and add into the batter and stir through.
Heat a little oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat.
Whisk the batter and thin it a little as needed, then pour in ⅓-½ cup amounts into the pan. Cook for about 1-2 minutes on each side. Repeat with the remaining batter. If planning to have some leftovers, reserve the unused batter, so you can cook and enjoy them fresh.
For the greens and eggs: Heat the remaining coconut oil, add a pinch of salt, and stir in the greens, and a splash of water if needed. Steam/sauté for a couple minutes until wilted.
Then fry or scramble one additional egg per serving
Serve topped with a dollop of yogurt, molasses or applesauce, and with the fried egg and greens on the side.
In a quest to cook more in community, and educate in a hands-on format again, I’ve been leading routine cook-a-longs this summer. I’ve been cooking both with my local running group and as part of my public health nutrition role, my side gig when I’m not working one-on-one with nutrition clients.
I love cooking with both groups–but especially the cook-a-longs with my running ladies because we share similar interests and chat more as we’re making the recipes. And because I get to choose recipes that I routinely make in my everyday and know will make meals and workout recovery easier for others.
This is one such recipe that we made together last week.
It’s a cool noodle dish, served either warmish or at room temperature, but ideally not truly ‘fridge-cold’ or with raw vegetables, because that makes it extra difficult to digest. At a time (summer / hot weather) when our natural digestive ability is already weaker.
It features an Asian-inspired sauce and is kept super easy and quick by utilizing a protein and carbohydrate source in one with legume-based pasta noodles. If you don’t prefer tahini, choose almond butter instead. There are several legume-based pastas on the market. Banza is a good one. If you don’t prefer that, you can add two cups of edamame, your choice of other protein such as grilled fish, chicken, or tofu, and use a whole-grain noodle, such as brown rice noodles or whole-wheat fettuccine.
Happy cooking and summer training / adventuring / eating / digesting! :)
Ginger Turmeric Tahini Sauce: ¼ cup tahini ½-inch fresh ginger, finely grated 1 Tbs. low-sodium tamari or soy sauce ½ tsp. turmeric 2 Tbs. lime juice 1 tsp. pure maple syrup 1 Tbs. light miso
Noodle Salad: 8 oz. chickpea or legume-based noodles 3-4 large carrots (about 500 grams), sliced thin 1 bunch (240 grams) radishes, sliced 2 cups green peas, fresh or frozen ½ cup (packed) cilantro, plus more for garnish Toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
Make the sauce: Mix the sauce ingredients, along with 4-8 Tbs. water until completely smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed and then set aside.
For the Noodles: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the noodles and any hard vegetables (such as carrots or radishes) and cook half way through. Add the peas and any softer vegetables, and cook the remaining few minutes until the pasta is al dente. Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
In a medium-serving bowl, toss the pasta and vegetables with the sauce and cilantro. Top with some toasted sesame seeds and serve.
Notes: Change up the vegetables depending on what is in season near you! When you vary it up, choose one to two root vegetables or starchy vegetables and one or two leafy green vegetables or more pungent vegetables. Roots/Starchy Examples: Peas, fresh corn, carrots, summer squash, zucchini (spiralized to add to the noodles (not in replace of!) is what I’ve done in the photo above) Green/Pungent Examples: Broccoli, cabbage, kale, spinach, radishes, daikon radishes (what I’ve used in the photo), asparagus
At this point in the summer, it’s easy to start feeling a little hot, overheated, and irritable, both internally (mood and digestion), and externally (skin irritation and inflammation).
Your body takes cues from nature and often reacts to what the environment is like. When it comes to your body’s symptoms of imbalance, it all comes back to digestion. Since food, and whether you’re digesting it, literally becomes the body over the coming weeks and months.
Signals of Balance in the Summer Months Feeling cool, calm, and optimistic with ample energy Taking breaks rather than pushing through work (or play) Staying hydrated and nourished No cravings for certain foods
Signals of Imbalance in the Summer Months Feeling hot, inflamed, easily frustrated, and hot-tempered Overworking yourself and perfectionism Allergic reactions Regular headaches Rashes Acidic digestion and reflux Craving spicy, sour or salty foods Loose stool or diarrhea Low energy
Summer’s Food Remedy
What’s surprising to some is that during the height of summer, our digestive capacity is actually lower. This is why on extremely hot days, we often have a low appetite. This may be especially apparent if you’re running lots of summer mileage but feeling less hungry afterwards or know your appetite doesn’t match your energy output. And shoving more food in when you’re not hungry or digesting it well is counterproductive since your body can’t digest and assimilate well when it’s not digesting and assimilating well!
When we look at the seasonal foods that grow in the summer, many of them are cooling and juicy. Just the opposite of how you may be feeling internally or externally!
So when we look to what should go in our meals to balance the heat of summer, it’s best to eat foods that are easily digestible when you have any symptoms that fall in the imbalance category above. That means (gently) cooked foods that are chewed thoroughly. But it also means incorporating ingredients such as vegetables, herbs and spices, and fats/flavorings that are naturally cooling to balance the heat.
For cooling vegetables, fennel, zucchini and summer squash are excellent and abundant to incorporate this time of year! So too are cucumbers, cooling mint, basil, cilantro, parsley, and dill.
That’s where this dal comes in. It’s easily digestible, flavorful, cooling with fennel, dill, and a little coconut milk stirred in, and especially important, tasty!
Much of my nutrition practice is focused on individuals and athletes with digestive health issues such as leaky gut, food allergies and intolerances, chronic GI distress, malabsorption of foods and nutrients, and inflammation. If you’re tired, stressed, and not really sure what to eat to help or hurt anymore, I invite you to reach out to me for more personalized support.
Featuring cooling summer ingredients, this is a dal to eat when the weather is hot, dry, and irritation-inducing—and when you’ve been feeling the same!
Prep: 15 minutes | Cook: 40-50 minutes | Serves:4
1 ½ cups red lentils 1 tsp. turmeric 5 cups water 1 ¼ tsp. mineral salt, divided 1 Tbs. olive oil 1 tsp. cumin seeds ½ tsp. mustard seeds ½ tsp. grated fresh ginger root 1 large onion, diced 1 large fennel bulb (~500 grams), diced 1 handful fresh dill (~15 grams), minced 2 tsp. hot chili sauce, or ½ a hot chili, minced 14 oz. / 400 ml lite coconut milk (1 can) Juice of 1/2 to 1 lime, to taste 1 cup dry brown rice, soaked for at least 4 hours 2 cups water Sliced crisp fresh greens, such as cabbage or romaine, to serve
Rinse the red lentils until the water runs clear; then put in a large pot with the turmeric and ½ tsp. salt, and cover with 5 cups of water. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until cooked – that is, when the lentils start to break down and merge together when stirred.
While the lentils are cooking, heat the oil in a large sauté pan over a medium heat and, once it’s hot, add the cumin, mustard seeds, and ½ tsp. salt. Thirty seconds later, when they pop, add the onion, fennel, and ginger, and cook, stirring every now and then, until soft and caramelized, about 20 minutes. You may need to add in a couple splashes of water. Cook with a lid on.
Add the chili sauce or chilies and dill. Stir and cook for a couple minutes more, then tip into the lentil pot along with the coconut milk; if the mixture looks as if it could do with being a bit looser, add a little water. Bring the mix up to a bubble, then take off the heat and stir through the lime juice.
To make the rice, drain and rinse from it’s soaking liquid. Then combine in a small pot with 2 cups of water, and the remaining ¼ tsp. Salt. Bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer, cover and cook for 40 minutes.
Serve the rice, sliced fresh greens and dal in a serving bowl. Garnish with a couple of sprigs of dill as desired.
Notes: If you’ve been feeling especially inflamed, reduce the hot chili sauce and mustard seeds by half.