I'm quietly confident that I am not alone in this statement...
"I'm an emotional eater"
I've always known this, but somehow through the years, I've come to truly recognise it, embrace it and in my own little way, work with it.
When I feel let down by someone or annoyed - I want to munch. When sad and tired - I need the warming cup of tea in my hands. When content and full of joy - I want to bake and share it with everyone.
These days I don't believe in restriction, but believe in being conscious of what my body actually needs. Is it time out on my own with a book or perhaps a glass of wine and non-stop talking with a friend. Perhaps a bowl full of greens to make me feel on top of the world again, or in those rare moments...Haighs chocolate.
For me, this recipe came on a day when I needed colour and beauty. I wanted to feel light and uplifted with pretty and fresh flavours dancing on the tip of my tongue.
Rice, Braised Red Cabbage and Blood Orange Salad
(recipe adapted from My New Roots)
1 cup brown rice | 2 ½ cups water | ½ small head red cabbage, sliced thinly | 1 medium onion, sliced thinly | 2 cloves garlic, crushed | knob of coconut oil | 2 bay leaves | 1 tbsp fennel seeds | sea salt and black pepper | 1 blood orange, segmented for garnish | 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar | 200g feta cheese | flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
For the Dressing | Juice of 1 blood orange | good glug of olive oil | 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice) | sea salt
- Rinse uncooked rice with water until the water runs clear. Drain and place in a small saucepan with 2 ½ cups water. Cover, bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and cook until tender, about 40-50 minutes. Remove from heat, let sit for a few minutes, then fluff with a fork.
- While the rice is cooking, prepare all the vegetables and make the dressing by combining the orange juice, olive oil and vinegar/lemon juice and season with sea salt to taste. It should be nice and tart.
- Heat a knob of coconut oil in a large pan and add fennel seeds, bay leaves and a few grinds of black pepper. Let cook for about a minute. before adding the onions. Cook until softened, about 5 minutes before adding the garlic, and cabbage and let sit on medium heat for a couple minutes to caramelize.
- Pour in the apple cider vinegar and stir – this will deglaze the bottom of the pot. Pour in a little water and simmer for a few minutes, allowing the liquid to reduce, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is cooked to your liking. Season to taste.
- To serve, place a helping of rice on each plate, followed by the braised cabbage, a few segments of blood orange, parsley, feta cheese and the dressing.