Monday, July 25, 2011

Food, glorious food! My Top 10 Thoughts on Eating

As of late, several dear women have sought my input on eating Vegan. Of course, I am far from an expert- I fall off the veggie wagon all the time (I especially regret when I land in a bag of Hershey's kisses!), but I can offer a few tried and true tips and tactics.

As Nature Intended- but bite size!
Sometimes simplest is best- fruit and veggies can be eaten plain- slice up a cucumber and dip it in soy/wasabi sauce, peel a carrot and keep using the peeler on it to create ribbons which are fun to snack on or throw in salads, pull out that Apple Peeler Corer Slicer you bought at the Pampered Chef party I made you go to years ago and use the darn thing- the peels mix in great with those carrot ribbons and a handful of raisins! (contact my friend, Jennifer if you need one of those nifty devices- www.pamperedchef.biz/jennifermasri)


Grow a little herb by the kitchen sink.
My garden usually contains, thyme, mint, basil, chives, tarragon, oregano and lots of interesting tomatoes and peppers (currently we have heirloom pinneapple cherry tomatoes and in the past we have enjoyed chocolate bell peppers). I find that keeping a small pot in the kitchen with my current favorite- you can get them at most grocery stores these days - helps remind me to use it, and the others! Then it goes into the garden or sometimes it just gets used up!


Follow flavor favorites
My tastes tend to vary a lot, but I find that I go through phases of favorite flavors- and it works for me to go ahead and eat it up! For example, I am totally into Spike right now- so I am trying it on everything! And if you are craving something- figure out which flavor you really want and try to create that, for example if I want a cheeseburger, I grill up a slice of squash, sprinkle it with Spike and sesame seeds, add avocado, lettuce, tomato, pickles, mustard and onions wrap all that in a freshly warmed corn tortilla- not the same but oh so reminiscent!


Enjoy eating
Gather your family together at the table and pay attention to your presentation. You don't have to be fancy- one of my favorite ways to find a little festivity is to make it Mediterranean style platter with assorted veggies, olives, etc. I add some crackers, cheese and salami for the family- and a bowl of berries or sliced apples. We all gather round and chit chat like we are mingling at a party! Finger foods, family style, fast cleanup!


Leave off labelling yourself
Recently I have toyed with being Vegan, Vegetarian, Lacto-Vegetarian, Ovo-Vegetarian, Lacto-Ovo-Vegetarian, Paleo and Gluten Free. While researching and trying the recipes I found (here are some links I enjoy http://blog.nativefoods.com/ www.vegweb.comhttp://www.primalandgreenoc.blogspot.com/http://paleodietlifestyle.com/) I realized that focusing on the vegetables satisfies almost ALL the eating styles out there- whether you choose wheat (vegan) or meat (paleo) I find that fruits make a great dessert, avocado is a sensational treat, and we should really avoid or limit eggs, dairy and processed anything.


Photo your food
This is a tactic that is a little silly, but if you have the ability to brag and show off what you are eating, it motivates you! I share with Facebook, post on my blog and have also played with other photos sites like http://365project.org/ and http://twitpic.com/) This also helps me remember that garnishes aren't just purty they usually enhance the flavor greatly, and I always want to add something special when my food is about to have it's picture took!


Break with Tradition
Broccoli for breakfast? Beautiful! Frozen treats for dinner? Fine! Liquid only lunches? Lovely! not the kind you shake not stir and garnish with 3 olives, ladies).


Find a fork you like
Another odd habit I have that I find makes me want to eat salad and other forkables- I really like this one particular fork I have. It doesn't match my flatware set, I don't even know where it came from, but it feels great in my hand, it provides perfect size bits and it looks great in my salad bowl!


Be an Iron Chef
When things get a little boring, send your hubby to the store and ask him to get all the things that he can remember you usually use, as well as anything he things you should try. Then go in the kitchen and see what you can make using 2 or 3 of the ingredients he brings home as the center of your meals.

Recipes are great and I would be happy to share some of my favorites, (I have them all over the place, but someday I will collect them into one central accessible e-location!) but being creative and cooking contentedly or preparing peacefully- these are the things that make all the difference in following a satisfying, healthy and stress free menu plan (oh I don't plan my menu, anymore, ever! It is too rigid and my choices are already so limited I hate being told what I am supposed to eat- even if it is by my past self who made a perfect plan!)

One more thing- do yoga. Yes, yoga. You will see what I mean.

PS Beets. Learn to love them.

This post linked to http://ohamanda.com/ for Top Ten {Tuesday}
(I know I wrote it on Monday, but it was really late, and besides I didn't know about Top 10 Tuesdays until today which is Tuesday so this is an after the fact, edited in link...)

7 comments:

  1. What a great blog sweetie, wish I would could shouda follow your tips... you've always been a wonderful food and chef whatever you label yourself I label you AWESOME! hugz MOM

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  2. thanks mom! food is a blog topic I can totally sink my teeth into... love & hugs!!

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  3. Thanks for linking up with us!

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  4. Love your blog! Thanks for linking :) I feel you on the whole labeling thing, especially when I am introduced as the "paleo girl" lol! I feel like instead of labeling myself as paleo or primal, I should say, "I eat real, unprocessed food and I avoid grains and dairy because they make me feel sick." xoxo

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  5. Thanks, Laura- I promise never to introduce you as the paleo girl!! I do appreciate your authentic commitment to eating healthfully.

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  6. Love this post! The break with tradition is a great idea! I open have a liquid lunch...smoothies full of fruit and veggies, and such! And I love taking pictures of what I create in the kitchen!

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  7. We do platter meals all the time usually if it's hot outside or we're just plain lazy. We cut up tons of cheeses, meatless cold cuts like veggie salami and pepperoni, olives, hummus, tapenades, etc with various crackers and condiments. We all fill up on it and it's so fun and easy. I think we do that about once a week usually on weekends.

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