Winter Advisory Meal Plan

26 Jan

Winter is no longer coming. It’s here. And according to weather reports, we East Coasters should be on the lookout for White Walkers, direwolves and giants.

By this evening an insane amount of snow is expected to blanket New York City. I’m not happy about this. I hate the cold. I hate snow. They combine the two things I cannot stand: being cold and wet.

But since Mother Nature is a hater, I have to deal. I’ll go to work today, hopefully come home early (preferably by subway, MTA!) and prepare to hunker down in case I have to work from home tomorrow. But just because Mother Nature has unfriended me and unleashed this hellbeast upon this fair city, it doesn’t mean I’m allowed to slack off.

The first thing anyone should do in case this kind of nonsense threatens your town is ensure you have provisions. Not everyone is lucky enough to live across the street from the grocery store. But it’s going to be so cold that those cashiers won’t see me for days. Instead, I’ve put together a few food ideas for you to prepare as you (and possibly winter boo) prepare for Winter Storm Juno (the worst name ever).

Breakfast: It’s the most important meal of the day, you can’t deny it. But your usual cold cereal or cup of yogurt isn’t going to cut it this time around. You’re going to need something hearty to start you off. I suggest a nice bowl of oatmeal. It is, after all, national oatmeal month. Celebrate with a cup of warm goodness flavored with frozen berries and a little brown sugar. Or, if yogurt isn’t your thing, an egg-white omelette with veggies and a sprinkle of cheese will do the trick to get you started. And don’t forget your coffee (or tea), because it’s cold out there.

Lunch: If you weren’t a fan of them before, now’s the time to make leftovers your best friend. You’re going to need something that travels easily if you have to go to work, or something that’s not going to require a lot of your time if you have to work from home. I’m a fan of chili. I make mine with turkey burger and kidney beans. Be careful of the high amount of sodium, but the fiber and protein work wonders for your system. You’re going to want food that will warm you from the inside out. Also a good look: pasta. Whole wheat spaghetti with marinara sauce is always delicious. Soup is good, too, but it doesn’t travel well. There’s always the risk of spillage.

Dinner: Now’s the time to have some fun with your meal. If you’ve already prepared the night before with your soup, pasta or chili, tonight you can make another good, hot meal. For me, it’s all about comfort food in these situations. That’s when I bust out my mini-meatloaves and macaroni and cheese with sauteed or roasted veggies.

Snacks and desserts: Now that you’ve warmed yourself up with your regular meals, a few cold treats won’t hurt you. In preparation for the whiteout to come, I’ve sliced up some red, yellow and orange peppers for hummus dipping. I also picked up some Goldfish crackers and will do my best not to devour them in a day. As for my sweets, I’ve got some applesauce cups and bought some snack size Haagen Dazs ice-cream bars. I know how bad I am when it comes to my sweet treats, so hopefully Mother Nature will stop hating and melt this snow quickly.

What are you doing to prepare for winter wonderland? Whatever it is, be safe and drink wine.

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