Tough day at the office – Let dinner be easy


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Sometimes the workday gets the upper hand! Today was one of those days. I made a wonderful lentil-chard-vegetable soup last night and enjoyed some for lunch. So Plan A for dinner was a little more soup with some sort of protein and salad. Heading home at 6 pm, though, I still needed to go by Market of Choice and get some protein for dinner, coffee for the morning, and restock in general. Walking toward my car, I imagined a juicy (but lean) burger or some other version of comfort food to accompany my soup.

I suppose there are children growing up today for whom healthy salads, homemade vegetable soups and lean meats (or none at all) ARE comfort foods. Not me. Comfort foods for most of my life involved grease, starch and sweets. These are not the culiary stars in my new lifestyle.

Between the parking lot and my dinner plate I had to run the gauntlet of the entire grocery store, while feeling tired AND hungry. How could I achieve comfort food that was still on the healthier side? Maybe a buffalo burger? Unfortunately, no such luck at the meat counter. I inquired about the chicken-basil patty and learned that along with chicken and basil, it contained sugar! Really? So I got a plain chicken breast and some ground beef for some other day. I bought pears, apples, oranges and a mango in produce. You can never go wrong with fruit! I gathered coffee, juice, milk and wine.

By the time I got to the enormous deli counter, I was running out of steam. I no longer envisioned cooking anything from scratch and the leftover soup, though healthy, was not beckoning. So what could I simply buy and heat up? The clerk offered me a taste of their kale-blueberry-super salad which was pretty tasty and seemed like a great addition to whatever I had for dinner. But maybe the orzo-curry salad? I’ve had it before, but for some reason asked what was in the dressing. Oh, she says, sour cream, mayonnaise and coconut milk….and curry. Hmm, not sounding like a spa food exactly. And for protein? I spied the coconut crusted catfish (which is fun to say) and the spinach-feta-stuffed pork loin. This is the sort of test of commitment that my spa life needed. Which of these belongs on a spa-life small dinner plate?

So what was for dinner on my hard day? I heated the pork loin in a small ceramic dish at 350 in the oven while I opened a bottle of Malbec, cleaned up my new fruits, and put away the rest of the groceries. I finished out my plate with a serving of the kale super salad, and a few slices of an organic apple along the side. Lovely. Easy. Dinner done! I probably should have taken a picture before I ate it. I was just too hungry!