Saturday, April 23, 2011

those who can't run, cook

So I'm on limited mileage for the time being due to my (stupid non-running injury) chest wall muscle tear.  I guess I tore it while trying to fold the backseat in my car while sitting in the drivers seat. Then exacerbated it the next day while walking an overly exuberant Jane.  Jane likes squirrels.  When Jane sees squirrels she sometimes tears after them.  Holding Jane's leash can be an exciting exercise in itself.

I did manage to get a run in today - 3 miles, not the 11 that was on my training plan.  But still, I want to keep doing what I can while keeping the old body healthy.  It was a nice run around the lake the with the husband and Jane.

So anywhoo, since I didn't run yesterday, I decided to cook!  Here's what I made: Pan seared tuna steak served on white beans with fresh basil.  Bibb lettuce salad with fresh dill and english cucumbers with a lemon dijon vinaigrette.  And because I am a carb whore, bread - a lovely baguette served with olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping.  The tuna and white bean recipes are from my Williams Sonoma "The Weeknight Cook" cookbook and I just winged it on the salad and vinaigrette.  It was a tasty meal and even the kids liked it!
Mmmmm, tuna steak!

Here's the lowdown:

White Beans (makes about 10 cups cooked beans)
2 pound pkg of dried white beans
2 T olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic
sea salt
freshly ground pepper

Parboil the beans
Put the beans in a large pot and add cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat, about 15 minutes. Drain the beans and transfer them to a dutch oven. 

Cook the beans
Meanwhile, in a fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the 2 Tbs. oil. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the onion mixture and the 1 1/2 Tbs. salt to the dutch oven and stir to combine with the beans. Add cold water to cover the beans by about 2 inches. Cover and cook until the beans are tender (about 90 minutes). Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. 

Pan Seared Tuna
4 tuna steaks, each about 4 oz. and 3/4 inch thick
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley (I opted for fresh basil instead of parsley)

Sear the tuna
Season the tuna steaks on both sides with salt and pepper. In a fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the 3 Tbs. olive oil. Add the tuna steaks and sear until crisp and browned on the outside, about 2 minutes per side for rare. Transfer 2 cups of the beans to a large bowl and toss with the parsley. Store the rest of the beans for later use ('cuz you're making about 10 cups of the stuff).

Divide the beans among 4 plates, top each with a tuna steak and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Bibb Lettuce Salad with Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette
Bunch of bibb lettuce washed and drained (or you can use a bag of bibb lettuce, that works too)
1 English cucumber, peeled and diced
Another view.  Guess I should have paid more attention to
 "plating," and maybe used cloth napkins!
big bunch of fresh dill, washed and chopped
for the vinaigrette
approximately 1 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 dollop Dijon mustard
juice of one lemon
healthy pour of Rice Vinegar
Sea Salt
fresh ground pepper

whisk all ingredients together and adjust amounts to taste - sorry this is so vague but I don't measure when I'm throwing stuff together!

Apply vinaigrette to salad mixture and toss right before serving.

By the way, I'm no cook.  So if I can make this stuff, ANYONE can!

Bon Appetit!


  1. YUM! But that food looks entirely too healthy!! Where are the oreos??? :)

  2. I'm trying to eat healthier, remember? So we won't mention the ice cream sandwich I had for dessert. :)


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