belly hangover

Friday. A day of recovery.

Not from drinking. While I’m sure I had four or five glasses of wine on Thanksgiving, that wine was unable to permeate the layer of food I laid in my belly. The recovery required was from the food itself.

I didn’t eat anything until lunchtime, and then went as light as humanly possible.

Chopped leftover turkey (white and dark) mixed with yellow curry powder and Kraft reduced fat mayo with olive oil. I’ve had this jar of that stuff for ages and a lot of the time it’s weird – when you want mayo, you don’t want olive oil. Too healthy tasting, amirite? However, it worked here. I love celery in turkey and chicken salad, and rather than mixing the celery in and then finding something to serve it on, I just went ants on a log style. Yum.

I had homework to do and a house to tidy – it was a slow, gorgeous day.

When I was at Whole Foods getting our turkey, I also grabbed some quinoa from the bulk section. I love quinoa when properly cooked, and properly cooking it isn’t my strong suit. However, I soaked this batch for a good hour prior to rinsing and cooking it and didn’t salt it until it was done, and one (or both) of those things made all the difference.

High Altitude Quinoa, Mushrooms, and Brussels Sprouts Salad

1/4 cup raw (unsprouted) quinoa
1/2 – 1 cup sliced portobello or crimini mushrooms
1 – 2 cups thinly sliced brussels sprouts
parmesan or romano cheese

At least an hour before you plan to eat, add the quinoa to 1 cup of water and stir until most of the grains are no longer floating.
When you’re about 20 minutes from being ready to chow, rinse the quinoa in a fine strainer for a minute or two. The outside of quinoa is really bitter, so you want to get it off.  Bring 3/4 cup of water to boil (this is less water than usually recommended for quinoa, but I read somewhere that it’s better to semi-steam than actually boil) and add the quinoa. Turn the heat down to a rapid simmer and chop your mushrooms.
Get a big pan hot and add a little olive oil. Throw the mushrooms in, sprinkle a little salt on top, and leave them. Be brave. They’re delicious when they get all brown. Chop your brussels sprouts and check the mushrooms – if they’re brown on the down side, you can flip them and move them to the side of the pan. Add the sprouts in the other half, salt lightly, and stir stir stir. They’ll cook fast when they’re sliced that thinly, and you’re going for caramelized.
Put the mushrooms on the plate. Drain the quinoa and stir in salt to taste (1/8 – 1/4 tsp probably) and a few turns of pepper. Pile it on top of the mushrooms and then put the sprouts on top. Grate as much cheese as you think you can conceivably handle, then grate a little bit more.
*You don’t have to salt at each step, but a little salt in each stage is more satisfying than a lot at the end, I find.

Hang out with your dogs and celebrate the day after Thanksgiving.

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