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Healthy Recipe: Orange Roasted Root Vegetables with Spicy Citrus Millet

A perfect weeknight meal

Millet is one of my absolute favorite grains – it's healthy, hearty, and low in calories.  Since it has a very mild, nutty flavor, the citrus and spice really play together with the millet nicely. Feel free to use any type of root vegetable you like; parsnips, celery root, or yams would all work well.

 

 

Ingredients:

4 whole oranges

5 big sprigs rosemary

3 sweet potatoes (about 1 lbs total)

6 carrots (about 1 lbs total)

1 bulbs fennel

1 small red onion

4 cloves garlic, whole and peeled

1 chile pepper, minced, sliced or whole (depending on your heat preference)

1 lemon

2 cups millet

Olive oil

Salt & Pepper, to taste

 

Directions:

Roast the vegetables: Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Slice 3 of the oranges thinly. Lay the slices on the bottom of a roasting pan or casserole dish. Lay 3 rosemary sprigs over the orange slices.

Cut the sweet potatoes, carrots, fennel and onion: You can wedge, dice or cube the veg, depending on how fast you want it to cook (the smaller the cut, the quicker the cooking time.) I find that a mixture of a 2” cubes and wedges cooks evenly and looks pretty. Lay the cut veg on top of the orange slices and rosemary. Add the peeled whole garlic cloves. Drizzle the veg with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.

Slice one more orange thinly and lay orange slices and remaining rosemary sprigs on top of the veg. Roast in the oven for about 30-40 minutes, or until all the vegetables are tender. You may need to toss them once or twice to cook them evenly and to brown them slightly.

Cook the millet: While the vegetables are roasting, heat about 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the chile pepper, minced or sliced as you prefer. Cook for about 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the millet, tossing to coat with olive oil (you don't want to color the millet at all). Add 4 cups of water and raise the heat to high, bringing to a boil, covered. Add the zest of the remaining orange and the lemon, and their juices. Add salt and pepper to taste. Once the millet and water boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until tender. NOTE: Cooking the millet with a 1 to 2 part (millet to water) ratio, as here, will yield a firm yet tender, rice-like consistency. If you increase the ratio to 1 to 3, the millet will be softer and creamier. You can also add a little extra water after the millet is finished cooking, with the heat on, to achieve a softer texture as desired. The millet can rest, covered, with the heat off, until the vegetables are finished roasting.

Finish the dish: You can remove the rosemary and roasted oranges, or eat the oranges, if you prefer. When the vegetables and millet are cooked to your liking, simply top the millet with the veg on a plate and serve!

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March Montly Special

DOUBLE REFERRAL REWARDS!

Usually, when you refer a friend and they come into my office for a massage therapy session, they get $10 off, and you get $10 off your next session as well.  But this month, when you refer a friend, they still get $10 off, but you get $20 off your next session!  Everyone wins!  Refer a friend (or a few!) any time this month to take advantage of this amazing offer.  I'll see you in my Westport office!

Snow Shoveling Posture

Given the "historic blizzard", this entry seemed appropriate today

We've survived another blizzard!  I haven't shoveled my own snow yet, but I thought this short posture review would be helpful before we all venture outside to dig ourselves out.  How should one shovel snow in order to lessen the strain on the body?

Since the snow isn't nice enough to come up to our arm level, we need to bend down to shovel it. Herein lies the key to correct shoveling posture. Do we bend at the hip or at the knee? Which one of these pictures looks more correct?

   

If you said the second, you're right! Although it's easier to bend over from the hip and pick up the shovel with our arms and shoulders, it puts excess strain on the low back, neck and arms. In the second picture, however, essentially performing a squat motion is going to cause the least strain on the body. The knees bend, the shoulders come down directly over the hips and the rear is dropped behind. The arms are kept at a close range to the chest, keeping pressure off the upper arm muscles and engaging the core. Then lift up from the legs and glutes, pushing with force from the core to move the shoveled snow.

Sounds easy, right? Well anyone who's ever squatted with weight will tell you it's not. :) The good news is, with a bit of practice, you'll find that shoveling can be an exercise for your glutes, quads and abs, NOT your lower back and upper arms, which shouldn't be throwing the weight of a shovel-full of snow anyway.  Want some good news? Snow shoveling can burn around 350 calories per hour – so I think that's an excuse for an extra hot chocolate as a completion reward!

If you find that your posture is perfect when shoveling, and your muscles still ache, you're not the only one. That's the perfect time to come in for a session – massage therapy can ease muscle pain and increase recovery time. I'll see you in my Westport office!

 



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