The last few weekends, my body and brain have been getting a workout as we plan and renovate our backyard. With all of that work, and there is a lot of it, I plan to spend every hour I can in our new backyard oasis drinking my morning coffee, hosting parties, casual lunches and brunches, sipping wine, stargazing, and reading. But, I will need to leave the house eventually because summertime is road trip time.
In a couple of weeks, I’m heading out on my first backcountry camping trip to Bruce Peninsula. Having grown up spending summers at our family cottage, camping is brand new for me. Not to worry though! My boyfriend, who I’m going with, has camped his entire life. So that’s sorted.
More day trips to wineries and breweries, a coffee hop to Buffalo, friends’ backyard BBQs, a handful of birthday parties (my 30th included!), spontaneous picnics, concerts, etc. There’s so much to see, do, explore, drink and eat.
With my summertime adventures planned, many which include eating in abundance, my digestive system will certainly be pushed to its limits. Part of a modern approach to healthy living is indulging in the moment, which means enjoying the foods I don’t eat on a daily basis. When it’s all too much, fermented foods are my go-to for a body reset. I make and eat sauerkraut like it’s my job (it sort of is, in a way), chug kombucha, enjoy yogurt every day, devour kimchi and a whole lot more. Travelling makes it nearly impossible to bring these foods along as they require refrigeration to stay “alive.” So, I’ve turned to something I rarely, if ever do: supplementation. Probiotics are my personal exception, which I take during peak stress, travel and holiday periods. Trust me, they really do help.
Renew Life, a brand I’ve trusted for many years now, have a new traveller’s probiotic that I’ll be taking every day to assist with my summertime travel plans, hearty BBQ dinners, late nights, early mornings and, yes, that camping trip which I’m sure you’ll hear more about. Renew Life’s new probiotics don’t require refrigeration, so I can pack them with me to-go. I’m currently taking the Ultimate Flora Critical Care, which has 50 billion active cultures from 10 strains of bacteria. Along with my sunscreen, hat, water bottle, snacks, earbuds, jarred salads, iPhone, camera, lip balm and sunglasses, my probiotics will be right at home.
If you’re looking for a few healthy, digestion-friendly recipes, try this Fresh Corn Succotash with Lentils and Blueberries and pair it with my Vanilla Fig Date Squares with Oat-Almond Crust. For sides, it doesn’t get easier than slices of summertime’s finest, watermelon and a make-ahead kale salad with a probiotic-rich kombucha dressing. Or, quickly whip up this brand new soba salad recipe in less than 30 minutes.
This cold noodle salad’s dressing is blended with miso, yet another way to get a daily hit of probiotics. I’ve whisked the tawny, peanut butter-like fermented soybean paste into lime juice, maple syrup and avocado oil for a creamy, salty-sweet dressing for soba (buckwheat) noodles and summer-fresh vegetables. This salad packs well in airtight glass jars to throw in your bag, wherever your summertime adventures take you. For me, it’ll be road fuel for that camping trip I mentioned. But to be honest, I’ll likely enjoy the fruits of my kitchen and physical labours, slurping cold soba noodles right at home on our new back deck.
Cold Miso-Lime Soba Salad
Any protein can be added on top of this salad before sealing your jar lid. Try cubes of smoked tofu, shelled edamame, roasted chicken, grilled steak or crunchy roasted cashews.
Make-Ahead: 3 days
Total Time: 15 mins
2 servings (12 oz) soba noodles or brown rice spaghetti
2 red bell peppers, seeded, thinly sliced
2 carrots, julienned or grated
2 green onions, minced
1 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
¼ cup lime juice, more for serving
¼ cup neutral oil, such as refined avocado oil or grapeseed oil
¼ cup white miso paste
1 Tbsp maple syrup
2 tsp grated fresh ginger or ½ tsp dried ground ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbsp black or white sesame seeds
½ to 1 red Thai chili, minced, to taste
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain, rinse with cold water and drain again. Add noodles to a large bowl along with peppers, carrots, onions and cilantro.
- In a medium bowl, whisk lime juice, oil, miso, maple syrup, ginger, garlic and sesame seeds until fully blended. Add to noodle and vegetable mixture and toss gently to combine (clean hands work the best, I find).
- Add noodle salad to each of 6, 1L capacity jars and top with a wedge of lime for seasoning. Enjoy directly out of the jar or transfer to a serving bowl to eat.
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Renew Life. All opinions are my own.