People often ask me what I eat for lunch, since I always bag-it and never use the microwave. Lunch is simple, yet hearty for me; I like to eat as raw as possible, yet have enough energy to last me through the rest of the work day and my evening yoga class. If I realize I skimped out on calories during lunch, a small handful of raw mixed nuts at 4pm holds me until my dinner at 8 or 9pm.
Lunch always involves raw vegetables, fat, protein and soy yogurt for dessert. I interchange the fat with either nuts, olive oil or cheese (soy or dairy), and the protein with either beans or tofu. Sometimes I add a grain that I had prepared the night before, sometimes I just add more beans and raw veggies should I not have a grain ready.
Today was a lucky day since I had barley left over from last nights dinner (homemade chana masala over barely), I was able to use the rest for lunch, creating a completely different dish.
Raw vegetables really fill me up, and give me tons of energy for the remainder of the day. I love them so much I usually don’t even put any spices on my lunchtime dishes. For today’s lunch I used cooked barley (which was originally pearled), to which I added chopped broccoli, cucumber, tofu, fresh basil leaves and pine nuts. This will be perfectly tasty as a cold salad; no need for reheating, all food groups included, all nutrients and taste intact.
If the idea of eating raw vegetables scares you, you can replace the pine nuts with a splash of olive oil, sesame oil, lemon juice etc. However, I guarantee that in no time, you’ll be enjoying their natural taste as is.
Here is a list of some other raw favorites I often include in my lunch:
Red chard (leaves and stems)
Yellow, green or red tomatoes
Basil, basil and lots of basil! (I sometimes use basil in place of lettuce, for a salad, I love it that much!)
Golden or red beets
Cilantro in place of lettuce (I have not tried this yet, but was recommended to do so by a friend last night)
Raw oats (for a topping)
Play around and see what you can come up with. I’d love to hear your ideas!
**Update: This entry has been chosen to participate in the monthly Wholesome Lunchbox Event by Coffee and Vanilla