I recently read this article about how creative people better understand the importance of being alone. I’m not talking loneliness, but the act of being by yourself for a given period of time. When your thoughts are the only ones in the vicinity and you basically have to “deal” with yourself – mind, body and spirit – all by yourself.
This may seem surprising, but not everyone is comfortable being alone. Their thoughts turn from quiet whispers to loud yells in their heads, or perhaps they find they’re afraid to explore what those deep thoughts really are. I’m thankful not to fall victim to this, and instead find that being by myself forces me to think things through better, reflect on what’s happened to me recently (good, bad or ugly), or simply process creative ideas.
I’ve come to accept running as my time alone. Sure, sometimes I run with a local running group, whose support is wonderful and welcome. And yes, sometimes I run with music to keep my feet moving or a podcast to distract myself from the miles ahead of me. But many times, I lose myself in my own thoughts. Many runners will agree that the road is where they work out all manner of problems. A good day deserves a run, just like a bad day deserves a run. It’s amazing what you can work out in 3 miles, or 10 on those long run days.
And it’s amazing what you can dream up! While running, I write mental to-do lists, set small and large life goals, plan my upcoming week, and – surprise, surprise – create recipes!
I admit, half the time, I’m hungry while running. Especially on long runs, my mind follows my stomach. What will I cook or puree once I’m home to refuel? What can bake that will please my friends? What can I concoct for my next blog post? Running allows me time to do nothing but think (ok, and perfect my form, pace, cadence and overall running skill). There are no screens in front of me to provide distraction. No one to converse with and steer the topic off course. Just me and my creativity.
Which brings me to this recipe. My latest run left me in the mood for something roasted, savory, creamy and protein-rich. I wanted all the flavor, and all the health benefits. So, I devised my plan, and put it into place upon arriving home. Brussels sprouts and carrots roast up in a glaze of spiced tahini, and are then topped with over-easy eggs, fried in coconut oil. The combination of iron and Vitamin C in these foods allow for iron absorption, the eggs and tahini provide sufficient protein and healthy fats, and the coconut oil lend a slight sweetness to the overall dish along with added healthy fats.
For those who don’t know, tahini is essentially sesame seed butter. It’s nutritionally similar to your natural peanut or almond butter, with a slightly tangy flavor. This makes it great for both sweet and savory applications! Buy a jar and try it out 🙂
Put yourself in the kitchen, maybe alone, and let your creativity run wild while you cook this up!
Tahini-roasted Brussels Sprouts and Carrots with Coconut Oil Fried Eggs
- 1 lb Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed and sliced in half
- 1/2 lb carrots, peeled and cut into sticks
- 4 tbsp tahini, stirred
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2 tsp coconut oil
- 4 eggs
Preheat oven to 400°. Line a baking pan with foil and spray with PAM.
Prep vegetables and combine in a bowl. Stir in the tahini, cayenne and salt and pepper. Mix to coat. Spread in a single layer on the prepared pan, with the Brussels sprouts cut-side down.
Bake at 400 for 15 minutes.
5 minutes before the veggies are done, heat a large frying pan over medium-high. Melt coconut oil and crack in the eggs. Cook to desired doneness, though it’s best if you leave the yolks runny.
Serve roasted veggies onto plates and top with two eggs each. Season with more salt and pepper if desired.
Linking up for Think Out Loud Thursdays over at Running with Spoons!