Our household has recently adopted a new member and a new, healthier diet. Read on to hear about our household goals or scroll down for my recipe for apple slaw with cilantro-lime vinaigrette.
I know, I know. Where have I been? Several of you have kindly emailed me to ask if everything is okay. And yes, everything is fine. This just seems to be the year that everyone has decided to either:
a) get married (most of our good friends)
b) have a baby (all of our already married friends, and seemingly everybody but us)
c) move into a new house (us)
d) adopt their brother-in-law (us)
Yes, that's correct. We have adopted my brother-in-law-- if it is actually possible to adopt a 29 year old.
It was about three months ago that DJ moved in with us. Timing is a funny little thing sometimes. It just so happened that we moved out of the garden apartment right around the time John's little brother found himself facing the prospect of moving back home with his parents-- again.
John, being a caring older brother, has always wanted to help DJ through the various difficulties which persist in his life. But, until we moved into this house, our ability to help has been limited. The brother-in-law residing on the couch in a one bedroom apartment is much less appealing than the brother-in-law living in the basement of a four-bedroom house.
He has tried to be independent, but something always seems to prevent him from having the life he wants. Sometimes it's bad luck. Sometimes it's bad decisions. Whatever the balance of luck and decision making, this August we found DJ on our doorstep.
We knew it was important for him to tackle everything head-on, so we had a pow-wow with DJ the night he moved in. One of the biggest decisions made during that family meeting was that DJ wanted to improve his health and lose weight. His 5'5 frame was supporting 305 pounds and he could hardly walk up our street without losing his breath.
At this point in November, he has lost around 25 pounds and is actually able to jog short distances (something he claims he hadn't done since high-school).
And of course, one of the biggest ways we are supporting DJ is by ensuring that the house is full of healthy food options. Initially, this led to silly things, like me raiding the pantry to make sure that all the snack foods with bad carbs were removed to an undisclosed location. This proved to be a bad idea when I forgot they were hidden.
Now I am finding it much more effective to just limit the snack foods, or to buy healthier options like whole grain baked pita chips.
I created this apple slaw recipe just for DJ, as a healthy side for steamed fish I prepared during his first week here. DJ is a big fan of spicy foods (he is notorious for putting hot sauce on everything), and I thought the combination of spicy, tart, and sweet would be especially good here.
Despite its origins as a DJ recipe, my apple slaw has turned out to be a huge hit at every party I have thrown in our new house this fall (including baby showers for all those friends having babies). It's the perfect accompaniment to barbecued chicken and cornbread-- if you aren't watching your calories, of course.
Apple Slaw with Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette Printer Friendly Version
Serves 4-6 as a side dish
2 apples sliced into thin batonettes
1/4 red onion, finely diced
1 large garlic clove, finely minced
1/2 jalapeno, minced
1 tsp white wine vinegar or rice wine vinegar
1 tsp maple syrup
zest of 1 lime
juice of 1 lime
2 tsp of finely minced cilantro
2 TB olive oilDirections:
Slice the apples and set aside.
Combine all other ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk thoroughly to combine. Toss the apples in the vinaigrette, allow to marinate for 15-30 minutes.