Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Salad, wheat grass juice, and treats

About a month ago, I was talking to the mom of one of Elisabeth's friends. I stole an idea from her and we put it to practice last week. The idea was this: each week the children will have a night to choose what they want for dinner and they'll help make it. There are some health limitations I've added. For instance, we don't make fake macaroni and cheese(the boxed kind) but we can definitely make a batch from scratch. Mostly I try to stay away from boxed, prepackaged foods and from refined sugars. Elisabeth choose chicken fingers this week and Charlie choose Spaghetti(we do half whole wheat pasta). Elisabeth watched while I cut the chicken, we made our own bread crumbs, and then she painted the chicken breast pieces with mayo and then shook them up in a gallon ziploc bag with the bread crumbs. I made an oriental cabbage salad and we had some sweet potatoes and russet potatoes we cut up into french fry and potato wedge shapes and baked them in the oven. The picture below was of my second helping. I had a huge salad with a few pieces of chicken on top. It was so yummy and fulfilling. Here's the recipe for that salad:

Oriental Cabbage Salad

For salad:
2 Tbsp sesame seeds
4 green onions
1/2 c slivered almonds
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
16 oz cabbage, shredded (about 1/2 a head)

Mix cabbage and onions. Place in fridge. Optionally toast almonds and sesame seeds at 350 degrees for a few minutes. Set aside.

For dressing: (I prefer to make the day before and refrigerate)

2 Tbsp Sucanat

dash of salt

1/3 c olive oil

1/2 tsp pepper

3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 Tbsp Bragg Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce)

Mix dressing and pour over salad just before serving. Add seeds, almonds and oranges.

I love food. I love that we're finding healthy foods we enjoy. We still like to celebrate with food, and we do, only our food choices for the celebrations have gotten better. We all love fruits and can eat them as treats. Last night for our family home evening treat I made some caramel popcorn. This was a special treat, one we don't make often even though it's healthier than other versions. The recipe is posted under my recipe tab here on the blog. It calls for brown rice syrup instead of corn syrup(or karo syrup) and Sucanat instead of brown sugar. Mostly I'm finding that the less refined sugar we eat, the easier it is to leave it alone, and the more you leave refined sugar alone, the better the real foods taste(by real I mean things that are grown in a garden, rather than packaged and processed). Sometimes I buy special treats at the health food store so that if I'm feeling indulgent, I'll have something on hand that's not as terrible as other things. A few of my favorites are yogurt covered raisins, peanut carob clusters, agave sweetened shortbread cookies and Coconut Bliss 'icecream'(not really ice cream). Mostly I try to go buy the slogan Michael Pollan is famous for, "Eat food. Not to much. Mostly plants." I think if you follow that advice, you really can't go wrong.

Today while I was at the health food store, I decided to order an ounce of wheat grass juice. While I waited for them to make it, I did my shopping. Once I was ready to check out, I picked up my wheat grass juice, sniffed it and let the kids sniff it. They thought it smelled pretty nasty. It did. I decided I better wait until I was in my car to drink it because I wasn't sure how I'd react since I'd never had it before and I didn't really want an audience. It was nasty. I quickly downed it and then had to eat a handful of yogurt raisins to make the taste go away. I was really glad I decided to pick up some yogurt raisins that day.

1 comment:

April said...

It's true that the more "food" you eat the more you like it...and the reverse is true too. Ug.