For my niece’s birthday a few months ago, my brother suggested I get my niece some dress up costumes. My niece has a fabulous imagination and loves dressing up and pretending to be someone else. I popped along to the local toy store with good intentions. I wanted to get her something to inspire her. There were loads of amazing outfits for boys – they could be firemen, astronauts, super heroes and doctors just to name a few. But the choice for girls pretty much centred around dressing up as a Disney princess.
With hindsight, I should have bought the astronaut costume and just removed it from its packet – I knew my niece would not have been impressed if I had bought her a boy’s costume. But it wouldn’t have seemed like a boy costume if there hadn’t been a boy picture with the costume.
Not only were most of the “girl” costumes for Disney princesses but they were also pretty impractical. The mermaid costume with its super tight skirt looked like an accident waiting to happen. I know I couldn’t have walked in it. I worry about what this is saying to young girls. Should they just sit around and look pretty and not go out and have adventures? There were definitely no adventures to be had in the mermaid costume.
In the end I managed to find an Alice in Wonderland costume, which turned out to be a streak of genius. My niece went to an Alice in Wonderland themed party not that long after her birthday and the present solved any costume making dilemmas for my sister-in-law. At least Alice had adventures. I also bought a Barbie ballerina outfit which was more pink than I would have liked but my niece loves pink and dancing so in reality a good pick. Cause I don’t want to force my ideas on my niece and her life, and I do think dancing should be pretty much a feel good activity for anyone – my niece’s love of dancing reminds me of this every time I see her.
One of the interesting things about food blogging is that from my limited experience, food bloggers are primarily female. I think the food industry is a strange one in terms of how the genders are represented. So many of the top chefs are male, yet I think it is still fair to say that at home, women generally take on most of the cooking jobs. And it is these home cooks that you often see food blogging. Of course there are also professionally trained female chefs blogging.
But this recipe for beef with Thai peanut sauce comes from a male blogger. Mike, who is the creator of The Iron You blog, writes about not only food but also health and exercise, though the emphasis does seem to be on food – at least for the period I have been following his blog. If you are looking for great healthy recipes, there are some wonderful looking recipes on this blog. This is the first one I have made but I have quite a few others flagged to try.
To make this for one I used the following ingredients:
- 130g of steak – I bought beef already cut into strips so I have no idea what the cut was.
- ½ tbs of olive oil
- 15g peanut butter
- 1 tsp of honey
- ¼ tsp of minced garlic
- ½ tsp of Sriracha sauce – mine was most definitely store bought
- About 1-2 tsp of hot water
- 1 spring onion (scallion), sliced on the diagonal for garnish
As the recipe title says, this meal is super quick to make – easily on the table in under half an hour. There is about 10 minutes preparation – less if you buy pre cut beef and minced ginger. I wasn’t that impressed with the beef strips I bought so am going back to cutting up my own beef. It tends to be cheaper and I have more control over how fatty it is. That is I like pretty much no fat except for some light marbling when I making a stirfry. I can also make sure the beef is lovely and thin.
If you use the ingredients listed on the original recipe, it is gluten-free. My version wasn’t as I used ordinary soy sauce. I followed the recipe as given, adding one teaspoon of water at a time to check the consistency of the sauce. I cut back a bit on the water – unlike Mike, I like my peanut sauce fairly thick. My beef also cooked quicker than suggested (5 minutes compared to the 10 in the recipe), but I like my steak rare and generally err on the side of slightly pink when cooking stir-fries. Taking this into account the recipe takes less than 10 minutes to cook.
The resulting dish was good but not quite as good as the peanut beef I have had in Thai restaurants. It was a bit light on in the peanut department. I suspect that this is because it is a healthy version of the one the restaurants provide. Maybe not one that can be truly made healthy?
It is already not the lowest calorie dish on the block so adding more peanut butter would up the calories quite a bit. The original recipe says it is 454 calories per serve. When I put it in to myfitnesspal, I get 358 calories which is a huge difference and I am not sure which one is more accurate.