Start this March with a K.I.S.S.
By now we’re all likely familiar with the acronym, K.I.S.S., which I prefer to believe stands for “Keep It Simple, Sister.” I think we’d all agree that around this time of year, after a couple of wintery months of cold, sleet, snow and ice, we can’t wait for the warmer afternoons, longer days and promise of easy living that March brings. But we’re not quite there yet; there’s another month or so before the flowers burst into bloom and everything seems sheathed in a cloak of vibrant green.
This time of year, most of us yearn for a break from the months of complex prep, long-simmering stews, layered casseroles and heavier meals. It feels good to get back to basics with something that’s easy to pull together, (relatively) quick to make, and, well–simple.
Here are some ideas for quick and simple food that will satisfy while we wait for the renewal of spring.
One of my all-time favorite breakfasts is a simple baked sweet potato with almond butter. I’ve elevated the almond butter a notch with this almond sauce, but the basic premise is the same. Flavorful and oh-so-nutritious, too!
Do you love hot cereal for breakfast, but don’t have the time for it on weekday mornings? I’ve noticed variations on squash purée (mixed with coconut milk for creaminess and thickness) as a substitute for oatmeal. Another option is this no-cook paleo-style cereal, which is incredibly warming and comforting, and almost instant.
A classic simple food is hummus. It pairs with almost any veggie or cracker and is a great source of healthy protein. If you’re feeling adventurous, try a spiced variation.
Winter salads are ideal because they offer the opportunity to mix and match ingredients you have on hand. Kale is a hardy winter green that works well in any number of salads. Or go for a pasta variation and start early getting into a picnic frame of mind.
One of the simplest, quickest snacks I’ve discovered are nori chips. These uber-healthy crisps are incredibly easy to make and provide a host of minerals lacking in most diets. But be warned: they are oh-so-addictive!
For something sweet, try these Cocoa Nibbles.
Any grain-free granola or trail mix works as another great snack. And if you’ve got the time, you can even make your own.
Pairing soup with hearty bread or salad is a simple way to feed both body and soul. Some of my favorite soups are this Moroccan Spiced Tomato Soup, Creamy Potato-Leek Soup, or Spiced Cauliflower Soup.
As you can see, “simple” doesn’t have to mean “boring.” What it does mean is minimum work for maximum enjoyment–leaving you plenty of energy for other things come spring.
Ricki Heller is the author of Sweet Freedom: Desserts You’ll Love without Wheat, Eggs, Dairy or Refined Sugar (one of only three cookbooks endorsed by Ellen DeGeneres on her website) as well as three e-cookbooks. She writes the popular food blog Diet, Dessert and Dogs, where, for the past three years, she has chronicled her journey with candida and posted almost 600 sugar-free, gluten-free, vegan, whole-foods recipes.