We have now hit that odd part of the holiday season where most of the festivities are over, but we’re still not back to normal just yet. Students – and some workers – are still off. Many of us won’t get back to our regular martial arts routines until the New Year. We’re looking forward and making resolutions and martial arts training and competition plans for 2018, but we’re still recovering from celebrating the last of 2017. Some of us are probably getting a little tired of leftovers at this point.
So if you’re looking for something new, delicious, and healthy to eat as we recover from the holidays and look forward to a brand new year, we have a little gift for you: healthy holiday recipes! With the help of some of the Asian World of Martial Arts blog’s friends from the martial arts world, we’ve got some delicious meals and snacks that will keep you happy, sated, and relatively close to your fighting weight as we head into 2018. Here are three recipes for the martial artist in you.
Moroccan Coconut Soup
Here’s a hearty, gluten-free soup from rising mixed martial arts star Serena DeJesus.
3 cups of vegetable broth
1 sweet potato or yam, diced and peeled
4 cloves of garlic, chipped
1 yellow or red bell pepper, diced, with seeds removed
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled
1/2 cup of diced green chili peppers
1 14 oz can of fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 15 oz can of chickpeas
1 14 oz can of coconut milk
1 lime fully juiced
1 small jar of red curry paste
A pinch of cumin and cinnamon to taste
Sea salt and pepper to taste
(If you, like many martial artists, are looking to add more protein to your diet, you can also add tofu or shredded chicken to this recipe.)
This can be cooked on a stove top or in a slow cooker. Personally, I always cook it on stove top, throw in all the ingredients but I make sure to add the yam within the broth first to have it soften up first. It’s important to save the apples and peppers for last so they do not get too soft before the yam does. Stir occasionally.
Winter Training Soup
Here’s a great vegan soup from martial artist, writer, and host of the martial arts podcast “Dirty White Belt,” Jeff Shaw.
1 large onion
3 cloves garlic
3 stems celery (I like the Chinese celery for the flavor but you can use regular celery too)
1.5 tsp cumin
2 tsp Adobo Chili powder
2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp Ancho chili flakes
5 cups veggie broth
28 oz. diced tomatoes
1 cup red lentils
3 cups shredded kale
Peanut butter to taste
Salt & pepper to taste
Chop the onion, garlic, and celery and saute in 1 tbsp. of olive oil. In a bowl, combine all the spices and after 5 minutes or so, mix them into the saute pan. When fully combined, pour in the broth, tomatoes and lentils. Bring to a boil, than lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes.
Add the three cups of kale. Stir and taste the mixture for spice tolerance: if it’s too spicy, add peanut butter to taste to mellow it out (I usually use about 3 tbsp. of sugar free peanut butter).
Simmer 5 more minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve and garnish with pepitas.
This serves 6. One serving: 268 calories, 34 grams carbs, 7 grams fat, 22 grams protein, 89 milligrams sodium, 6 grams sugar.
Personal trainer and recreational distance runner Jane Kurchak isn’t a martial artist, but she has put in her time as a martial arts mom to this blogger, so we’re giving her honorary status for the purposes of our recipe roundup. Her favorite crackers are a healthy snack that can keep you going whether you’re running a marathon or cheering on your young martial artists from the sidelines at tournaments. Or even if you’re taking a martial arts lesson with your kids.
1/2 cup of raw (not toasted) Chia seeds
1/2 cup of raw Sunflower seeds 1/2 cup of raw
1/2 cup of raw Sesame seeds
1/2 cup of raw Pumpkin ( pepita) seeds
1 cup of water
a pinch of sea salt
Put all seeds into bowl .. add water . Stir. Set aside for 10 minutes
Line cookie sheet with parchment paper . Spread mixture onto pan.
Separate into two big squares .
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Then flip and bake for another 30 minutes .