Monday, August 13, 2012

Meal Planning Mondays: Baby Steps.

If someone had approached me five years ago and told me how much I'd soon evolve toward a healthier whole food diet with my cooking, eating, and taste preferences, i would have told them:

Take your commie hippie tree hugging projections and shove it up a hot dog smothered in cheez whiz.

Yeah, doesn't make much sense. And yet, it would have been my honest reaction.

Food has such powerful psychological implications. Telling someone what they should eat, what they must restrict, and in general everything they are doing wrong can be mighty annoyin'. Counterproductive for sure.
At least in my case. Tell me I can not eat any thing...even the most random strawberry Nesquik powder (?) and before you know it I'll be dreaming of nineteen different combinations of cookies dipped in that artificial strawberry milk. I'll be certain that strawberry flavored milk is the one, the only  path to my ever beckoning pleasure center. I'll speak about strawberry milk, I'll fantasize about strawberry milk, until what do ya know

i'm found one frightening Wednesday night by Tyler after he returns home from basketball,
floating in a pink tinted milk bath with three straws in my mouth flanked by candlelight and stacks of oreos.


I've learned one thing about my eating style: I love just about all food.
Fresh food, fried food, fat food, skinny food, 
fake food, dried food, cooked food, raw food, shove it in yo' mouth food.

I just want to be allowed to eat, ya know? And enjoy it.
But the stark reality of the standard American way of eating is that it no doubt leads to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, fatigue, depression, joint issues, sexual problems, lions and tigers and bears OH MY.

However, you can't woo me into healthy lifestyle patterns with any notions of removal or take-away or fear mongering or obsessive portion control. i just don't respond that way. 

I do, however, respond to abundance. Filling in my gaps with so much good that i'm not even realizing I've eliminated quite a bit of bad. Focusing on the gargantuan, exciting, tantalizing ways one can enjoy bounteous amounts of delicious food that also happens to be good for you: now that gets me revved up and ready to get my kale on, if you knowhaddamean.

I also respond to baby steps. I am not willing to commit to be a vegan or a pescotarian or a vegetarian or a raw foodie because suddenly i would feel the gauntlet of no's slamming my psyche. But, I love the idea of cooking vegan at least one night a week. Did you realize that if I did that just one night each week, I could boast that my family had approximately 52 vegan meals in a year?! Add that to our once a week vegetarian night and suddenly wham bam thank you maam we are like a whole one third healthier.

Am I making any sense here?

Well, i need to wrap this up because I need to get dinner started anyhow.

Point being:

Add more good
and removing the bad begins to take care of itself.


1. Mom's lunch! 
I've eaten this up to four times in the same week. Love.

  • Baby Kale Salad with Beets and Feta

  • Baby Kale (I love the big bag at Costco)
  • 4 steamed beets (canned or jarred), thinly sliced
  • 1/2 sweet yellow pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Almonds (toasted)
  • 1/4 cup Crumbled Feta
  • 2 tablespoons Fresh Dill (chopped)
  • 1 Clove Garlic (minced)
  • 1 Red Onion (peeled and sliced paper thin)
  • 3 oz Red Wine Vinegar
  • 3 oz Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt

Combine first seven ingredients and toss in a salad bowl. Mix together vinegar and oil with salt. Drizzle over salad, toss well and enjoy. (Salad can also be made ahead of time and keeps well for a few hours)


2. A yummy crustless* quiche (sorry, bad picture..i overcooked it a bit). 

  • 1 tablespoon Olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped leeks or onion
  • 2 cups Spinach
  • 1 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
  • 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 5  eggs
  • 1 cup milk

  1. In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add leeks and sauté until softened (about 3-5 minutes). Add in spinach and tomatoes; salt and pepper to taste. Sauté until spinach is wilted (about 2-3 minutes).
  2. Transfer mixture to a greased 9-inch pie plate. Sprinkle with cheese; set aside.
  3. In large mixing bowl, whisk eggs and milk until well combined. Pour over cheese.
  4. Bake in a preheated 350°F oven until eggs are set and knife inserted in center comes out clean (about 40-50 minutes).


3. Repost alert!
I only pictured the uncooked version of the pizza previously. But the done deal deserves justice! I served it this week to my cuz and his fiance and it got rave reviews. 

(scroll to the bottom of the post)

1 comment:

Joan said...

Where do get your material?! Seriously!?! ”take your hippie commie crap and shove it up a hot dog covered in cheese wiz?!?!”
I love it!
I don't know that I care about veganism (is that even a word?) but I do care about eating well and feeding my family well. And I do think we all consume far to much, with all that being said: thank you for sharing your creative, delectable meal ideas with us all.