Make Your Own Salad – Perfect for Holiday Parties when you don’t know everyones preferences or allergies.
How To Travel and Enjoy the Holidays With AH
Traveling and holidays are challenges for many of our readers since meal routines and food choices are very often thrown out of whack. In the Ludwig household, we travel frequently and would love to share how we eat when we are out locally or even traveling internationally.
Be prepared with a few travel food suggestions. I’ve even included some meal plans and pictures from our most recent trip to Australia. And you’ll love our travel version of Coconut Curry Stew Recipe (see below).
- Carry roasted nuts, seeds, olives, and dark chocolate as snacks in the car, on the plane, or anytime.
- If you’ll have a kitchen at your destination, pack your immersion blender. A simple 5-minute sauce can make any protein feel like it was made in a restaurant.
- Create full-flavored meals without all the hassle by making a spice mix that you can use on anything, or bring your favorite store-bought spice or curry mix. Sprinkle your spice mix on any protein for a quick meal or use the curry to make a soup or a stir fry with lentils, chicken, fish or any other protein you have. See Curry Soup Recipe Below.
- Travel with a few food grade essential oils like ginger, lemon, orange, oregano, or dill. A few drops will brighten vegetables, soups, stir-frys, shakes, or any of your meals.
- Once settled into your home-away-from-home, purchase a bottle of good quality oil, maybe some nut butter, fresh fruits and vegetables, and perhaps sardines and canned or smoked salmon. We even use restaurant leftovers to make new meals. Leftover fish or chicken, for example, can be made into fish or chicken salad or curried fish stew.
Whether you’re using a small stove inside your hotel room, a hot plate, or a communal kitchen within a house or hotel, there are many ways to cook for yourself while on vacation. The recent increase in vacation rental houses rather than hotel rooms also opens up a world of possibilities, since you would have access to an entire kitchen!
Holiday Party or Potluck Tips
- Create innovative holiday rituals that don’t center around sugary foods. We just brought this challenge to our Facebook Community and the members came up with some incredible ideas. See the link for more.
- Bring a dish to a party so that there is at least one appealing food for you to eat or something to balance what will be served, and make sure to bring enough to share. For Example, my son’s class has a breakfast every year. I know that there will be plenty of bagels and muffins and juice, so I always bring mini Fritattas (AH pg 225 – poured into oiled muffin tins), and a bit of smoked salmon to balance out what I know will be there already.
- Never go to a party hungry. Have a satisfying higher fat and protein meal before you go.
- For potlucks, take a protein dish. This is the macronutrient most missing in the potluck party mix. If you want to avoid the desserts, take an AH dessert in addition to the protein dish, so that you aren’t missing anything.
- Keep roasted nuts and dark chocolate on hand for the times when a co-worker brings in snacks and you want something healthy to munch on.
Restaurant fare and quick grab-and-go foods are inevitably necessary when traveling. We created an entire section on this topic in our Restaurant and Grab-and-Go Recommendations in ALWAYS HUNGRY? page 186. You can see what to order in a variety of restaurants including Italian, Asian, Mexican Food Restaurants, American Bistros, or even what to choose from a Convenience Store, Deli or Salad Bar.
To see how we ate while traveling in Australia, I’ve included a small travel blog below. You’ll see that we really do use recipes from our book at home and away. Enjoy!
Australian Travel Blog – Dinner 1
Curious how the Ludwig’s eat when we travel?…We cook ! Making it work on two small hotel burners. We ate a lot of fish, lamb, and tempeh because Sydney had the best of all three.
Tonight we made brown rice cooked with dried porcini mushrooms and thyme, Pan-Fried Tofu (ALWAYS HUNGRY? pg 243), then sautéed nappa cabbage with ginger in the pot after removing the tofu, and Red Lentil Soup (AH pg 283). We made sure to make enough for leftovers tomorrow.
Another successful dinner on two burners in our hotel in Sydney. Melt-in-Your-Mouth Lamb Shanks (ALWAYS HUNGRY? pg 233) and leftover Red Lentil Soup, leftover porcini and thyme brown rice (cooked last night). I’ll chop a cucumber and avocado for a salad on the side.
Simple Pan Sauteed Fish and vegetables (and only used one pan) – sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper or your favorite spice mix and cook in a generous amount of olive oil on each side until the fish is opaque. Add a few leafy greens to the sauce after removing the fish from the pan. Serve with fruit for dessert.
I discovered a new fish that I love. It’s called John Dory, and it is delicious.
Cooked some chicken in a pan with my favorite spice mix, and used some leftover fish from last night to roll into tacos. Bought a can of refried beans and a tub of guacamole to top them off. These could be easily done as a lettuce wrap as well if you wanted to avoid the corn tortilla. You could also use leftover lamb or any other protein as the filling.
We ate out and had some leftover fish that I will use tomorrow to make something.
The two burner dinner for tonight: Curry Coconut Fish Stew (see Recipe Below – made with leftover fish – could easily use chicken instead), Sautéed Asian vegetables, fried tofu, and the best pan-fried tempeh ever (AH pg 243)! Made with locally made Tempeh. YUM. It’s mango season here in Australia so, of course we had mangoes for dessert.
Two Burner Cooking continued at lunch today. Yesterday, we repurposed half of some Leftover Poached Fish into Fish Salad lettuce wraps (See Salmon Salad AH pg.254) by adding celery, onions and Aioli (here’s my recipe). This salad works great with chicken or tofu as well. The other half of the fish was made into Curry Fish Stew. A few crudités on the side with store-bought hummus, and we have a quick lunch. Benji loves it!
For breakfast today, we had Coconut Curry Fish Stew because we just can’t get enough of this stuff. The full recipe will be in the ALWAYS DELICIOUS Cookbook coming out in March, but I can’t leave you without the basics. It’s too good. So here is my travel version of the recipe. It is a forgiving recipe that works with so many different variations as long as you have the basics….Curry Powder, Veggies, Coconut Milk, Protein, and Salt. Use any veggies, chicken or tofu instead of fish and come up with what is available in your local market.