Guess what? I got a snow morning! Morning classes at UNC were cancelled today due to snow and ice. Sweeeeeet :)
Seriously, though. Is it spring yet?!
Anyway! As ya’ll know (yes, ya’ll, now that I’m back in the south), yesterday was the first day of my second semester of grad school at UNC! It was actually awesome — I really liked the two classes we had so far and I’m nerdily excited about this semester. Homework sucks, but I think I’m really going to miss being in classes and learning when I’m done with this program!
What I’m taking this semester:
- Dietary Changes and Interventions
- Nutritional Biochemistry
- Food Service System Management
- Medical Nutrition Therapy
- Principles of Epidemiology for Public Health
Yeah — 5 classes this semester, and much more hard science, too! It’s going to be a majorly busy one. You’ll also note that this semester marks the return of Biochem, gah! We had that class yesterday though and it actually seems like it will be interesting (plus, it’s more of a refresher course because we have our really hard Biochem class next semester) — the professor is Czech, too, which is fun, considering that I taught in Prague and all :)
The other class we had yesterday was Dietary Changes and Interventions, which I think is going to be awesome. Great professor and very anthropology/sociology esque content, which is right up my alley, considering I was a Sociology major in undergrad :)
The other reason yesterday was awesome? Seeing all my grad school BFFs again :) I missed them!! We are already planning 2394203943208 outings, workouts, play dates, etc. :)
ANYWAY! Guess what I did last night for the first time in a month?! I COOKED!
It was glorious. I was in sweatpants, blasting the new Jersey Shore episode on TV, and chopping veggies. Vacation and traveling is awesome, but it’s nice to be home :)
Veggies were chopped on the beautiful new wood cutting board my parents gave me for Christmas! It was on my list because the gross white plastic one I had before was NOT picture friendly :)
Dinner was basically just me throwing things into a pot, and here’s what came out! It was DELICIOUS.
Turkey, Veggie, & Barley Chili
- 1 (32 oz) container vegetable broth (low sodium)
- 1 C barley (not quick cooking)
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pound of lean ground turkey
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 bell peppers, diced (any color)
- 1 small zucchini, diced
- 1 cup mushrooms, sliced (optional)
- 2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes
- 1 C tomato sauce (or jarred pasta sauce)
- 1 (15 oz) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 Tbsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp pepper
In a very large pot, add barley and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, let simmer (covered) until cooked — about 30 minutes.
While barley is cooking, chop all your veggies and prepare the sauce, beans, spices, etc. Set aside.
Add olive oil, ground turkey, garlic, and onion into a medium sized pan. Sautee over medium high heat until turkey is fully cooked.
Once barley is cooked (a lot of the liquid will have boiled off), add all the other ingredients, including the cooked turkey, to the pot! Stir and serve hot :)
I think barley is my new favorite grain. It’s a whole grain, has lots of fiber, and contains 8 essential amino acids! Plus, it has a very pleasant, somewhat chewy texture. The texture is a tiny bit like orzo pasta or something!
I enjoyed a bowl of the chili last night for dinner — I love fully complete meals like this. You’ve got:
- Fiber — beans and barley
- Veggie nutrients — zucchini, peppers, mushrooms, veggie broth, tomatoes
- Protein — turkey (you could also try using tempeh!)
Yum. Enjoy! Chili is one of my snowy day favorites — my friend Katrina had brought some from home yesterday for lunch at school and it’s what got me craving it!
Speaking of — I now have a TON of chili. What’s the best way to freeze it? In ziplocks? Containers? Thoughts?! :)