Do you have a touch of wanderlust or a downright yen for adventure? Does your wallet demand you take care of more prosaic matters like paying the rent and eating dinner instead of traveling the globe?
Please, take heart. While there’s no substitute for an all-expenses-paid trip to Paris, we mere mortals can explore plenty right here at home. Why not start in your kitchen?
Take your family’s taste buds on a culinary trek for a weeklong holiday. Here are seven ways to travel with your cooking this week.
1. Whip Up a Sizzling Stir-Fry
Start your week with a bit of Asian flair on Monday. Many dishes from the Eastern world have impressive health benefits. For example, Indian cuisine is typically rich in turmeric, a spice that’s a powerhouse anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. You can buy it as a supplement, but it’s far tastier in a curry.
Stir-frying is one of the healthiest cooking methods if you enjoy low-carb eating. While “fry” generally has a negative connotation among the health-conscious, this style uses thinly cut vegetables and slices of meat – no frenched fries in sight.
The third ingredient is aromatics, typically a rich sauce with various spices. Start by choosing a protein. You can use beef, chicken, pork, or fish – vegans can enjoy tofu or seitan.
The marvelous thing about this dish is its versatility. Those who aren’t watching their carb intake can serve it over rice, although it tastes divine on its own.
2. Have Taco Tuesday
Who doesn’t love Taco Tuesday? Travel south of the border with your clan by setting up a bar at home. You can use flour or corn tortillas and hard or soft shells. The carb-conscious can make a salad alternative, eschewing the exterior wrap. Choose beef, chicken, or one of the Beyond Meat crumbles if you prefer a vegan meal. Add lettuce, pico, cheese, and salsa, and you’re set.
Although there are some veggies in the tacos, why not complement them with elote? This Mexican street corn dish is an immediate favorite among nearly anyone who tries it. All you need is corn, mayonnaise, chili powder, and cotija cheese. You can add cilantro if you’re among those without an aversion to this tasty herb. You’ll add filling fiber and phytonutrients to your meal.
3. If It’s Wednesday, It Must Be Thai
Go back to the other side of the globe mid-week for a taste of Thai. Here, too, it’s easy to add a healthy twist to the cuisine. Although takeout pad thai can contain a whopping number of calories, this gluten-free recipe won’t make you add another notch to your belt on Thursday morning. You can also make it with shrimp if you follow a pescatarian lifestyle.
One way to ensure you get a full array of phytonutrients is to “eat the rainbow” daily. That term refers to consuming foods in various colors, each of which has distinct profiles. Meals like Thai chicken Buddha bowls contain every hue imaginable. Plus, they’re a blast to make with your family.
4. A Taste of the Old Country on Thursday
Go to Germany on Thursday for a taste of old Europe. You can simmer brats in a pan, but they taste even better on the grill. Want to add some color and crunch? Try these grilled vegetable and brat kebabs that have you eating the rainbow a second day in a row.
Germany makes some of the best sauerkraut, and this side dish is chock-full of health benefits. It’s laden with probiotics to nourish a healthy intestinal microbiome. It’s also rich in several nutrients like vitamin K.
5. Get Fishy on Friday
You don’t have to be a Catholic to enjoy Fish Friday. Many cultures living near the shore dine on this meal nearly daily. For example, Japan is famous for its sushi. While this meal may seem like one made for takeout, it’s surprisingly easy to make with rice, seaweed, and salmon. A bit of cream cheese, avocado, and soy sauce round out the recipe.
Of course, you may prefer British fare. If so, why not try on some old-fashioned fish and chips for size? You won’t be eating Ruffles – it’s just how they refer to french fries across the pond.
6. Feast Like the French on Saturday
If there’s one thing the French know how to do, it’s enjoying a leisurely meal. Nearly half of all French people take 45 minutes or longer to eat lunch – as in midday meal. Compare that to most of us eating at our desks.
The French celebrate food and being alive to enjoy it, and they let it show in their leisurely meals. We in America may not know this luxury every day, but that’s what days off are for.
You can feast on French cuisine such as crêpes suzette as you linger over brunch. Alternatively, have a potluck by having everyone contribute a meal from their favorite culture to the evening’s dinner.
7. God Bless the USA on Sunday
On Sunday, it’s time to return to America with your family. What better way to celebrate your homecoming than a traditional meal of fried chicken, corn on the cob, and mashed potatoes? However, you don’t have to hit the fast food drive-thru. This baked fried chicken recipe tastes even better with a fraction of the fat.
What’s more American than apple pie for dessert? It’s okay to splurge a little now and then. A slice of this with melting vanilla ice cream makes you forget about Monday morning.
Travel With Your Cooking This Week
Maybe you don’t have the money for a worldwide trip. But who says you can’t travel the globe in your kitchen? Take your family on a culinary adventure by trying these seven ways to travel with your cooking this week.
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