Here’s what I’m wondering.
When a boy walks into this apartment for the first time, tonight, for dinner…
Will he take one look at the bookshelves lined with 100+ cookbooks (I stopped counting after I hit triple digits), realize he’s dating a hoarder, and run?
Will he inquire as to why not a single plate matches a single other plate? Why one person needs so.many. placemats? Why there is a photography light permanently stationed on the kitchen table? Next to the DSLR? That is filled with not a single picture of a single human but at least sixty pictures of brussels sprouts? Don’t judge. They’re CUTE.
Will he notice that there are no less than three pairs of identical running shoes in various stages of duress and decay in the closet door? Each of which I love in it’s own special way and can most certainly tell apart, thankyouverymuch. (But only because they have race tags for different races on them. Which is also how I plan to tell the difference between any future twins that I have. Oh yes. I’m going to be a great mother.)
And then…there’s the mustard situation.
Specifically, the six jars of specialty mustard that I have sitting on my desk. For inspiration.
I feel kinda bad about them because…I don’t even really like mustard. So it’s really a false advertising kinda deal. He’ll either be (mistakenly) really happy that I “love mustard so much” or really grossed out by it…depending on his mustard preference.
But such is my life. And when Saucy Mama asked if I wanted to participate in a recipe contest looking for a healthy delicious recipe that uses one of their mustards…I thought…hmmm I’m all about healthy delicious and forcing myself to like things just because they’re good for me (it worked with hummus!). And said yes.
The great thing about mustard, and why I wish I liked it, is that it adds lots of flavor to food with very few calories. In that sense…it’s kinda the ideal condiment. Especially since it comes in so many flavors and textures. You’ll just never get bored. Ever.
The one exception in my disdain of all things mustard…is honey dijon salad dressing. I’m vaguely obsessed with it. I could drink it. Really.
So I knew that if there was a chance of me liking a dish with mustard at all whatsoever…honey mustard was the way to go. And champagne honey mustard? Even better.
After some fiddling around in the kitchen, this risotto was born. Made with barley and not arborio rice, it has a great texture to it and is filled with whole grain goodness and over half of your daily recommended dose of fiber. 56 percent (!!!) to be precise. The deep caramelly flavors of the roasted brussels sprouts and apple pairs perfectly with the smoked paprika they are coated in and also with the sweet tangy-ness of the honey mustard, which imparts enough creaminess to the dish that you think you’re eating a seriously calorie-laden dish. Have no fear, though, each serving of this boldly flavorful dish packs only 338 calories and 9 Weight Watchers points. It’s also majorly low in fat and cholesterol. Totally ass-friendly. And totally delicious.
A recipe that you can feel good about stress eating. Love it.
Right, so. While last week was the week I spent emotionally eating everything in sight…
…this is the week where I pick up the pieces again.
I’ve been emotionally vacuuming instead. It’s much better for your cardiovascular health.
In all seriousness, I hated the way I felt last week. Tired. Belly-achy. Just physically not good. Which begs the question as to why I kept eating crap. Uh…no idea. I think it’s a vicious cycle situation. I felt crappy so I ate more sugar to temporarily elevate my mood, which only perpetuated the vicious cycle.
I should have gone for a run instead and gotten my endorphins the natural and more longer-lasting way. Which is what I did last night! I was anxious all day about tonight’s dinner situation and so I went for a run. Six miles of head clearing awesomeness.
Reminding me once again that:
But you will always regret eating four red velvet cupcakes in one sitting. Always.
While we’re here, I just want to tell you all about an awesome going-on next weekend in NYC – the NYC Vegetarian Food Festival! If you’re in the tri-state area and you like food, veg or otherwise, then you should definitely attend! There’ll be lots of great eats, some awesome guests and speakers, cooking demonstrations, belly dancing classes, and some fab giveaways. Plus…did I mention I’ll be there. Because I will! Let me know if you’re thinking of attending so we can meet up!
I think your first apartment impression is how you know if you’ve met a keeper! If he gets excited about food, photography, or running (and doesn’t think you’re a hoarder) Keep him!
I love risottos made from different grains and this looks delicious!
(Ps- we’ve all had those weeks. Just keep moving forward!)
This post was both hilarious and inspirational. I think the boy will notice your cookbooks, and be like “dang, she must love to cook…awesome”. Also, I love how you are stress vacuuming. HAHAHA! I need to try that instead of stress eating.
I was excited for this recipe and now I am sure you are going to win, it sounds amazing!
He wouldn’t do a runner unless he’s a fool. And if he’s in a great hurry at least there are 3 pairs of identical running shoes he can choose between, unlike the plates:)
Mustard is great, adds great flavour and in many cases you don’t notice the mustard.
I think eating four red velvet cupcakes may motivate you to do an intense workout, to get rid of the guilty feeling, and calories.
This is such a great post – full of advice that I really need to start taking!
What a great idea for a risotto too – I love barley and the depth of flavour with the honey mustard sounds just amazing.
And I’m pretty sure the boy will notice nothing except how awesome you are 🙂
An awesome dish – I like the pairing of the brussels sprouts and apples, perfect with that honey mustard.
HOLLY you are tallented!!!!! this looks amazing!!!! amazingggg!!!!!!!
1) Love the 3 pairs of identical running shoes – totally necessary. 2) 100+ cookbooks is a must. I am right there with ya. 3) This recipe? So creative and delicious looking! Good luck with the contest 🙂 and the date!
Hey Joanne, You are too cute. Said boy needs to love all of you, cookbooks and all. I am also over 100+ cookbooks which have long supplanted my medical textbooks. I told Rob I would limit myself to 20 when we move to the US.. He told me I should try harder – I could do better. I am not so sure about that!! 😉
But you know what? I love mustard!! This looks like a great way to use it… “totally ass-friendly”, to boot! 🙂 Yum!
I often wonder if I would actually be married had my hubby seen me now between all the blogging paraphernalia, having to wait to eat until I take a picture, eat lots of beans and vegetables and deal with me spending my mornings working on my blog. I just tell myself of COURSE he would have. It makes me much more interesting I think. Not that I’m biased.
And funny you mention barley risotto. I just made some with mushrooms yesterday!
I will be going through the exact same situation anytime I bring a boy to the apartment. Hopefully he won’t judge too harshly and find it endearing?? This risotto looks fabulous and reminds me of the dish I’ll be posting later tonight. Be sure to check it out!
My appreciation and enjoyment of mustard has only happened in the last few years. And still I don’t really enjoy it on it’s on (unless fries are dipped in it. But come on. They’re fries. Am I right?) – it needs to be part of a dish. Yours is a perfect example. And the beauty is, not only does it have few calories, but a tiny bit goes a looog way.
Now, as for all those cookbooks. If he’s at all sane, he will be thrilled. They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, so I think all those cookbooks would be a pretty solid indication that’s he’s going to be eating well 😀
I love your flavor combinations…Brussels sprouts and apples. I think he will be happy knowing a girl that loves to cook. So many don’t these days, buying prepared food from takeaways instead.
This is a great idea for the Champagne Honey mustard! I have the 6 jars of mustard on my counter for inspiration too. I happen to like mustard so I have a bunch of ideas, we’ll see how the execution comes out!
This is such an interesting recipe – I’d never have thought of putting all these things together but I can completely see how they’d be delicious.
Yum! I love the Apples and Champagne Honey Mustard. This just looks so tasty. I am yet to make Risotto, but I plan on it soon. I featured your Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili on my blog today! Thanks for all your delicious recipes!
I could probably eat any kind of mustard with a spoon, I love it! I’m not sure if I can find champagne honey mustard where I live but I’ll have to look for it – if not, I’m sure I can find or make something similar because I’m dying to try this dish, it looks amazing!
Great combination risotto and the roasted brussels sprouts, apples and champagne honey mustard. The flavoures must be overwhelming awesome!
I love the texture of barley, and the champagne honey mustard sounds great! I hope all goes well with the boy!
I am obsessed with barley right now. I had an amazing barley risotto last week made by Paul O’Connell of Chez Henri.
Did I just hear you say that you don’t like mustard? Hmmm…I’ll work on forgiving you. LOL! Since you do like beans then I might let you off the hook:)
I can’t imagine having a guy over for the first time with all my cookbooks on display. Maybe you should hide some underneath your bed?
I’ve only had one experience with barley (back in the TFF days) and it wasn’t pleasant. The barley had cooked in red wine and was a deep shade of purple (really strange looking). Didn’t taste so well either. I should definitely give it another chance because this does look delicious.
Oh my gosh…that does look super creamy and satisfying. Good call! I, on the other hand, am a mustard-lover and I’m a likin’ the sound of that mustard. Alot. Such a fantastic flavor combo, too. I’m using barley or farro in my next risotto for sure! And uh…I don’t think guys pay attention to any of those things. Do they??
I think the boy would be delighted, knowing that some mighty fine meals come out of that kitchen!
This recipe looks like a keeper! I love mustard, and brussel sprouts are my BFF’s, so we’re golden. Can’t wait to hear how it turns out with the guy!
Oh, this is too too TOO good!
I laughed so hard at the running shoes – I will tell you a secret. I saved the pair of socks I ran my first (and only) marathon with for FIVE YEARS after the event. Can you imagine what it looked like? I could not part with it. Finally, last year, with teary eyes, I tossed it.
heck, I might not have too many mustards, but I am not confessing the number of vinegar bottles and types of flour in my pantry! 😉
gorgeous post, photos, recipe, loved it all!
(hope it will be a fantastic date!)
I love mustard and champagne honey sounds amazing. The risotto looks so good, the combination of flavors is fantastic. You are really creative with the recipes.
I look up to you as a goddess of healthy eating, so I’m always surprised (and a bit relieved) to hear that you have off-days too. Even when I eat too much sugar, I try to remember that the next day is a new day with lots of opportunities to make great choices.
Meanwhile, the guy coming over to dinner? If he knows what’s good for him, he’ll be grateful to be with a gorgeous, funny, brilliant woman who will cook him the best meals he’s ever eaten. Have fun!
Barley risotto sounds perfect. Wish I could be in NYC for the Vegetarian Food Fest (even though I’m obviously not vegetarian) so I could meet you! And eat all the yummy food, of course 🙂 Good luck with the boy and dinner tonight!
HAHAHA You are great, I hope you know that. I am totally with you as far as your attachment to several generations of the SAME EXACT pair of sneakers, whether or not your date / significant other understands it. And I reject the idea that there is a maximum number of Brussels sprout photos you can have in your possession before it’s considered abnormal… Don’t you worry, I’ve got your back!
Anyway, hope your date went well! Enjoy your run 🙂
whatever the guy notices, be it a slew of cookbooks or smelly running shoes, he’ll find it endearing if he’s into you. and that’s that! own it 🙂
Joanne, you are funny…
I like what you add i this risotto, it sure looks very tasty and healthy. I like that you have all kind of flavors in it, especially the sweetness of the apple together with the honey mustard.
Thanks for this delicious recipe and hope you are having a fabulous week 🙂
Looks delish!! Sure hope I get some Brussels sprouts in my CSA box next week!
I just found your blog through Pinterest. 🙂 This recipe looks awesome, and I will definitely have to try it – especially since I have 2 kids who love brussels sprouts. (I know, I know, what kid likes brussels sprouts, right? ;D)
Thanks for the idea, and it’s so true- you will never regret exercising, but you will always regret overindulgence in sweets! I seem to have to relearn that the hard way every single month. Damn PMS. 🙂
Thanks for a great blog, and I look forward to many great posts to come. Thanks for keeping the DSLR by the food. 🙂
I am fairly certain I could go Veg. if you were my personal chef. If you decide to quit medical school and want to escape to the Westcoast,you’re hired! This dish looks amazing as usual!
love goes through the stomach, they say over here, so if i was that boy and there were 100+ cookbooks in an apartment, i’d think i’d finally found myself a keeper!! and regarding those red velvet cupcakes, wanna join me in my sugar detox challenge for lent?
yum! I can’t wait to try this… my mustard-loving husband is going to die over this…
And I say OK to the cookbooks, etc – maybe hide the photo equipment… that could come across as weird and creepy until he “get’s it”.
I laughed out loud at your line “not a single plate matches another plate”… oh to think back to the days when I would buy 8-piece “sets”…
I love this post. It is so honest and so food bloggery. Mismatched plates, bizarre assortment of mismatched placemats and napkins, and a delicious recipes–sounds perfect to me. He better like it!
This dish is lovely, and you really must have mustard in it! PS: My advice is to lock the door so that the boy can’t escape and tell the world about your obsession with cookbooks and old running shoes.
I want this right now. Too bad I just got back from visiting family upstate and there’s no food in my fridge…It would cure the “I’ve been dragged to the Olive Garden twice in four days” feeling I’m having right now 😉
Your posts always make my day. Ahh I wish I could trade places with you for a day-run long runs, cook brilliant recipes and have time for photography! Most of my shots are taken while holding my one year old in the other arm 🙂 Seriously LOL. And if I get an hour run in, it’s amazing. Hope you have a great date. Oh and P.S. this risotto looks incredible as always!
I have regretted such cakes. Its always a good diea at the time! I need to get my hands on some pearl barley. Stupidly, I’ve never worked with it before but I love to eat it
Oh I do love a good risotto, barley makes it even better. With the Brussels Sprouts and apple in there Bob will love it too.
Where do you come up with these recipes, Joanne? I’ve got about 6 jars of mustard given to me at Christmas and I have yet to find anything creative to do with them. I love this recipe! I’ve been wanting to try risotto with something other than arborio for awhile. This must taste amazing with the roasted brussels sprouts, sweet apples and the mustard. Yum! If your new friend is the right one for you, he will see the beautiful, intelligent and absolutely amazing woman that you are and the rest will be history.
What a great way to use barley!
I’ve been asking my mom to please make risotto for me, I’ve never tried it and I’m intrigued about the texture, barley sounds like a great option and as delicious as rice
What’s not to love about a mustard loving runner who can cook? I had to laugh out loud at the shoe comment. I, too, have the same shoe at different stages of mileage, and I love them all. I never thought about my beloved Brussels Sprouts in a risotto. Awesome!
When I got my six jars, I opened them all and tasted them. Then I read the “refrigerate after opening” part of the label. So now I have 8 bottles of mustard in my fridge because, of course, I already had my own, too. If your kitchen table looks weird, imagine the first impression of opening a refrigerator where the entire condiment section of the door is mustard. Yup. I just may have you beat there.
Love the risotto idea. And I am even warming up to the Brussels sprouts. I have pretty much decided to like them after all. I can do that without eating them, right?
I think he’ll jump into your arms and ask you to marry him because this barley risotto looks unbelievably delicious.
This looks awesome.. I have just started to eat Brussels sprouts and am always looking for new ways to prepare them.
OK, I already ate dinner but I WANT THIS NOW. I seriously want all you veggie-ful combinations recently! Well done!
Hope you have a fantastic time at the festival, Joanne!! And if said fellow walks into your apartment, looks around and DOESN’T get the biggest grin on his face, then promptly show him the door. 🙂
So, what did he think of your apartment? Is he nice? Does he love food? Details please.
I have recently become a fan of mustard…. I am loving it actually. Now, if only I could love brussel sprouts. My mother boiled them when I was a kid and forced us to eat them. I have bad memories of the poor brussel sprout. I should really give it another go.
Am obsessed with mustard! Totally understand.
Also totally understand that thing about not regretting getting up and moving your body – it’s just getting to that point!!
Am a big barley fan, using it in a risotto is one of my favourite things. Will keep this in mind next time I need a mustard fix.
I love mustard so YUM! Dates are fun – and if he likes you 1000 cook books won’t matter 🙂
I’ve never tried risotto!
This looks like heaven in a bowl. Yum!
Wait wait wait – I couldn’t get past the fact that you’re having a boy over for dinner at your house. I don’t want to jinx anything, so I’m not going to say anything about meet-cute stories……
I totally force myself to like things that are healthy for me–case in point, goya. Have you ever heard of it? It’s a bitter melon they have here in Japan (it looks like a bumpy cucumber) and man they are not kidding about the bitter part, but it’s super healthy so I’ve taught myself to like it! Oh and I’m the same way with sugar…it is such a terrible and vicious cycle so thanks for the reminder that I’ll NEVER regret lacing up my shoes to workout! I hope the boy liked this delicious looking risotto!
Aaahhh, love this! I just recently made barley risotto (with a veggie stock that I made from beet juice — fun!) for the first time! I love the flavors you’ve used in this dish…apple is such a great addition!
champagne honey mustard? amazing! i don’t like mustard on its own, but in things? LOVE!
I’ve never heard of Champagne Honey Mustard. Sounds pretty perfect to me!
holy cow this looks fantastic! Eating honey mustard anything reminds me of back home in the states. 🙂 Brilliant recipe!
Absolutely nice Joanne!!!!
I’m not a huge fan of mustard, but in some recipes, it really works well. This sounds great and that boy? He’ll take one look at all those cookbooks and realize you are a DREAM come true!
Awww..comeon, you eat good food and live healthy! Any guy will be SILLY not to stay longer for a person who has a passion for life. 🙂 I love how creative you are in your use of mustard-it’s not my favourite BUT when used so well, I like it too! Bring it on!
What a great use of mustard! I am not a fan either, but I think this would be amazing! And if he is scared off by lighting, and dishes then he wasn’t worth it anyway 🙂
Barley risotto is one of my favorite comfort food treats! I love the inspiration and the mix of flavors here.
You brought it all together and it looks fabulous
looks delish! But I have to admit, I’ve tried barley in risotto – and it just doesn’t hold a candle to arborio.
I had brussels with mustard this weekend, and I love barley risotto, but I’ve never had them together. This sounds like a delightful combination. Enjoy the date tonight!
Dear Joanne, A perfect side or meal with a nice salad. Blessings my dear, Catherine xo
This dish is beautiful! This post cracked me up…sooooo what was his reaction? I want the dirt! lol
I looove mustard and even if I didn’t this dish would still sound amazing. I’ve never had apples with brussels sprouts but love that idea.
I remember your pasta sauce with apples added to it, now another savory dish with apples – YUM! Love.
Love your post, I just couldn’t stop giggling from the start, it’s just so funny!:) I am not a big fan of mustard myself, honestly:p
I love barley, really, I am one girl who could drink barley juice and eat the barley along with it; something that most people don’t do and I wonder why, in my local culture. I kept telling people that hey, others even cook barley as a dish in their meals and some, even take barley as a staple diet. For the wonders of barley…:D
I am a sucker for mustard, too. I think there’s probably at least four different jars in my fridge right now. I don’t think I could live without that condiment. LOL
Damn, this looks good! I’m such a carnivore – do I dare go to the festival?
oh my gosh, i go through that cycle weekly. i actually had a pad thai binge with an ice cream chaser yesterday, woke up in self loathing this morning. whyyyy.
that’s when amazing recipes like this come in so handy. i love honey mustard too, it looks incredible!
That looks so good, it’s definitely going on next week’s dinner list. Beautiful photos too!
Honey mustard is some pretty awesome stuff! Apples and sprouts sound amazing together! Sweet and bitter – I love the flavors you combined here.
barley risotto??!! pure genius! this is perfect for my current “diet”! i need more fibrous complex carbs like this. yay!
A guy should always be excited to see a pile of cookbooks. They indicate a fantastic cook.
I’m tempted to replace some of the liquid with beer. You know, to go with the barley, not because I’m obsessed with cooking with beer.
Looking good and tasty! I like this recipe and I am interested to make this on dinner.
Have a good weekend!
The right guy will learn to love all your quirks – and at least he’ll know about them ahead of time! Neither of us knew back in the day that my husband was marrying a food blogger , someone that would need a permanent photo studio in the dining room and a gazillion mismatched place. But it makes us cuter, for sure.
And this risotto? Well, he’d be crazy not to marry you just for this.
I’ve been trying to recreate a recipe that is barley risotto with caramelized pear puree, brussels sprouts and pickled vegetables. You have just brought me one step closer.
You don’t like mustard? Damn, I was thinking you were flawless 😉
Barley risotto, you are brilliant, Joanne!
And there’s probably a support group for people like us with our permanent kitchen studios.
oh my lanta. this looks like heaven in ma bowl. or, your bowl rather. damn.
This looks so warm and comforting! Love your recipes especially these healthier ones.
I love mustard – not by itself but as a seasoning – it especially goes well with smoked paprika and I agree that it is excellent in salad dressings
OMG, I just came across this blog and instantly fell in love. Then I read your bio and thought…. she creates this AND runs marathons AND goes to med school?
LOL….I suddenly feel like a huge underachiever!
I’m making this risotto this wknd. Thanks for the recipe!!
I too have found that running/vacuuming calms my nerves greatly.
This risotto is beautiful, I love brussels and have taken hundreds of pictures of them too, they are adorable!
love barley, so i definitely need to try to making risotto with it 🙂 i’m intrigued by the mustard in this. i totally want a bowl-full to try. just for safety, of course 😉
I actually really love mustard, and yes – have many different kinds in my fridge. I think when it comes to food, we are hoarders!! THis sounds amazing!
So creamy and a comforting dish…
You’ve just reminded me that I need to cook with brussels sprouts again soon.
This looks so creamy and delicious and has me craving Brussels sprouts right now. 😉
I enjoy your honesty, and your recipe for this barley risotto and brussel sprouts sounds amazing along with your photos which, by the way are just beautiful! good luck with the contest!
Mmm, what a unique way to feature mustard! Looks just delicious! Good luck 🙂
not a big mustard fan but this looks incredible! just voted for it.
Just wanted to let you know that I made this tonight for my husband and I and it was FABULOUS!! Thanks for the awesome recipe and the inspiration to try other barley risotto combinations!
Help! I’m making this dish as I type, and I’m really excited about it but don’t see when I’m supposed to add the mustard… ? Please and thanks!
Oops- I see it now. Sorry, I’m blind!
[…] Perlin?s kruopos su briuselio kop?stais ir obuoliais. Obuoliai visiškai pasimeta tarp r?kytos paprikos ir garsty?i?. Kaip troškinys tai stiprus ir gan malonus, bet perlin?m kruopom kolkas turiu geresn? paskirt?. […]