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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Happy Camper

My tummy is feeling fine. Great dinner tonight -- Thank you Martha. Stewart, that is.

Before I share it though, I must share a funny story. Because for some reason, funny things happen to me on a regular basis.

I went to Eller's Donuts today to order some donuts for my church's Easter sunrise service. Full disclosure -- they know me at Eller's. I have picked up donuts there for years. Mostly for youth group activities, but there has been a few "I-need-a-donut" moments in my lifetime....

But I digress. The owners are tremendously warm, generous people. They have always gone above and beyond the call of duty. I am so impressed with their hard work and willingness to do anything to provide quality service.

They also have a limited grasp of English. I believe they are originally from Thailand. They have a great menu on the wall, one half that lists all the donuts they sell, the other half with all of the Thai dishes they offer at lunch time. It's a funny combo to look at.

I have had more than one comical conversation with these folks. I have a longer story that I won't share here about a previous encounter with them when placing a large order for Easter. ANYWAY, today I show up to place the order and there is a young woman at the counter whom I have not seen before. She starts dutifully taking my order, and halfway through, the owner who knows me comes out.

She has a big grin on her face and says, "Hah-low, Hah-low, How ah yoo?" We smile and exchange greetings.

Then she says, "Hey... You no fat no more!" and puts her hands to her throat, apparently showing that I've lost my double chin. I just DIE laughing. I mumble something about not quite being "no fat no more," and then she tells me, all 4'8" and 90 pounds of her, that SHE is fat, grasping at the skin on her arms to show how "fat" she is. It gets funnier and funnier.

We finish my order, and she shoves a bag with donuts holes into my hand. I leave, and I choose to eat 2 of those darn donut holes. Because I no fat no more :) Even though my body can't handle gluten anymore. Funny morning.

Here's the great dinner recipe. You will love it!

SWISS CHARD, MUSHROOM AND QUINOA SALAD (picture the quinoa in the photo on a bed of sauteed chard -- deeeelish!)

1 cup quinoa, rinsed

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound Swiss chard, stems and leaves cut into 1/2 inch pieces, rinsed well (about 10- 1/2 cups)

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

Pinch of red pepper flakes

1 garlic clove, minced

12 ounces mushrooms, sliced

1/8 inch thick

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried

1/2 ounce Parmesan cheese

1. Cook quinoa according to package. Meanwhile, heat 1 teaspoon oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook swiss chard, stirring occasionally, until wilted and tender, about eight minutes.

2. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and season with pepper. Add red pepper flakes and toss. Transfer to a platter.

3. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil and the garlic to skillet. Cook over medium heat, stirring until garlic is slightly golden, about one minute. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until they start to release juices, about three minutes. Sprinkle with 3/4 teaspoons salt and season with pepper. Cook until mushrooms are tender, about five minutes. Stir in quinoa and heat through, about one minute. Add thyme. Serve mixture over swiss chard. Top with Parmesan.

Servings: 4


  1. THanks for the laugh... and I SO VERY MUCH remember your longer, even funnier story from the donut shop. :)
    and I cant wait to make this...yum!

  2. almost as good reading it as hearing it in person.

  3. What a funny demonstration that folks from cultures outside white America don't have the same inhibitions about body size. I met a wonderful couple in Mexico--his pet name for her was "Gorda." She wasn't, by the way, but that's not the point.