Did you ask everyone you met if they were born on Leap Day, and then proceed to ask how they feel about only really being 1/4th of their actual age? Did you also tell them that they're called "Leaplings"? If so, I bet you made some new friends.
Did you get your Leap Day party pants on, and do a whole host of things you wouldn't normally do on a standard calendar day? According to 30 Rock, real life starts in March, so I hope you threw all caution to the wind!
Did you propose to your man (if you're a woman) or accept a proposal (if you're a man) to balance the traditional roles of men and women according to Irish legend? Did you even know this was a thing? It's a thing.
Did you credit every odd or out of the ordinary occurrence that happened during the day to Leap Day?
Did you claim your free Starbucks coffee, and/or free second McDonald's Sausage McMuffin, and/or free Subway cookies? If so, you probably took my advice to throw caution to the wind, unless eating these things is a normal, everyday occurrence, to which I say no judgement.
Are you supremely annoyed that I didn't mention any of the above information to you before Leap Day? Don't worry, now you have 4 whole years to get ready for the next one! You will be so well-prepared!
I'll be honest, this Leap Day was one I wouldn't have minded leaping right over. It was cold, rainy, and altogether just a dreary Wednesday. I was in work meetings for six out of eight hours, and really, the day might as well have been renamed Extra Mid-Winter Hurdle Day.
But you know what really turned things around for me? Dinner!
This recipe for warm teriyaki beef over soba noodles with sauteed peppers and edamame was so easy to pull together! The recipe calls for flank steak, but I used center-cut boneless sirloin because it was on sale. Both are equally lean and delicious choices.
I also couldn't for the life of me find shelled frozen edamame, so I settled for pods. Let me tell you, big mistake. Not only did I spend a good 20 minutes shelling individual pods, I think more ended up on the floor than in the pan. I'm literally watching the cat swat an edamame around on the floor like a soccer ball right now. Not cute.
I've said it before: food makes everything better. Especially healthy, do-it-yourself Japanese food eaten on your couch with a glass of wine and your trusty DVR. If real life begins in March, start the month (and the next 4 years) off with this real-life, delicious, weeknight dinner!
Teriyaki Beef with Edamame Noodles
Adapted from Eating Well
Yields 4 servings
8 oz soba noodles, or whole-wheat spaghetti
3 tbs fresh lime juice
3 tbs teriyaki sauce (soy or hoisin sauce would work too)
1-2 tsp chile-garlic sauce
1/2 reduced-sodium beef broth
1/2 reduced-sodium beef broth
1 tsp corn starch
2 tsp sesame oil
8 oz flank steak, thinkly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 10-oz package frozen shelled edamame, thawed
1 tbs fresh ginger, minced
1/2 c cilantro, chopped (optional)
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the soba noodles, and cook until the noodles are just tender, about 6-8 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, whisk together the lime juice, teriyaki sauce, chile-garlic sauce, beef broth, and cornstarch in a small bowl. Set aside.
Heat the sesame oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the steak, and cook until just cooked through, about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer the steak to a plate.
Add the bell pepper to the juices in the pan, and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add the edamame, and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Add the ginger, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Stir the sauce mixture into the pan along with the beef and any accumulated juices. Cook until the sauce is thickened, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.