Yesterday we had our quarterly staff meeting. QSM involves sitting around at meetings, eating tons of delicious but unhealthy food. It always culminates in cocktail hour starting at 4 PM, and then company-sponsored after-parties where you can basically keep eating hors d’oeuvres and drinking until 4 AM. Unfortunately, I did just that… and managed to eat more than 4,000 calories! Unbelievable. Everything was really high-cal (cookies, brownies, various fried hors d’oeuvres, etc), but I still can’t believe how much I was able to eat. However, I decided I’m not going to beat myself up over it. I’m going to work out a lot today, and also eat healthy, and the combination of that and my race tomorrow can basically make up for it. This won’t be a losing weight week, but I’m hoping I can at least maintain.
So for lunch, I decided I really wanted to make soup, and I really wanted to use up the cannellini beans I had left over in my fridge from another recipe. I dug up an old recipe I had saved on Food Network for minestra, and figured it couldn’t be more than 500 calories or so, and that as long as I had a salad or something for dinner I’d be okay. However, I was pleasantly surprised to see that it ended up being 200 calories for the bowl!
I used 1/2 tbsp of olive oil (for two servings), so I basically cut that in half. I subbed spinach for escarole, because neither grocery near me had escarole today for some reason. Finally, I subbed some deli-sliced ham for the pancetta. It all went together very very easily, and was pretty quick, especially since there weren’t vegetables to chop other than the spinach, which was really easy – from walking into the kitchen to walking out with a bowl was probably about 30 minutes or less, and it was all very relaxed cooking, not frantic. Very pleasant :)
I was expecting this to be really bland because of the limited ingredients, but it was actually really good, and the spinach made it really filling too. The nutmeg added an unexpected twist, but by using just a dash of it, you don’t overpower the soup and the flavor wasn’t even identifiable (which I thought was a good thing). I still can’t believe how healthy this soup is! I’ll definitely be making this more in the future.