If you are interested in seeing my customer's quilts go to: http://www.miriamsquilts.blogspot.com/

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Buying menus

In my searching the internet for whole food recipes I ran across a blog called happyherbivore.com.  She has a weekly menu you can buy for $5.  It has 7 days worth of meals; breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and snack ideas - each day it's limited to 1,200 calories - so it's also a diet menu as well as a whole plant diet.  I'm giving it a try ...just went to the store to shop for my first week.  Grocery bill went up from what it has been since I swapped out meat for fresh foods, but some of that was some staples that I shouldn't have to buy again for awhile.  She had a sample one day's menu that I liked everything on....I'm reserving judgement on this week's, I'll have to let you know!

I bought parsnip, tofu, and a couple of spices I've never heard of for the first time.  Was supposed to get red lentils, couldn't find those so ended up with regular colored ones.  I could find the majority of things on the shopping list, but a few I couldn't.  It's uncomfortable to go outside of one's comfort zone!  And with a husband who - though is willing to make this change - is quite vocal when he doesn't like something it's a bit nerve wracking when I set out any new dish, I always grit my teeth waiting for the reaction.  This will be an interesting week.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Applesauce Muffins

I've pulled so many recipes off different places on the internet, I can't remember where I got this one.  For some reason I couldn't get it to print off, so I had to hand write it, thus - no reference on the paper as to where I got it.  A number of the recipes I'm finding I have to fiddle with somewhat, they have something in it that I've decided to try and avoid.  The same with this one.  There's still a couple of little things that at some point I hope to find a good substitute, or else just see if I can drop them out...but this first time I did use them.  But I did leave out a few major no-nos, and I think it was still good.  The only thing I debated over was the white flour.  The recipe called for 2 1/2 cups of whole wheat pastry flour (never heard of that before, but assume it's a lighter version of ww flour).  Can't get that where I live, so to keep the muffins from being super heavy and upset our poor systems that are in the first stages of getting used to all this healthy stuff, I decided to use some white flour....I do plan to slowly wean that out over time (and hopefully find that pastry flour some place.)  It was good - we both liked it, a nicely textured, moist muffin with a good flavor.

Applesauce Muffin

2 1/2 c whole wheat pastry flour (I used 1 c white and 1 1/2 c whole wheat flour)
1 t cinnamon
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 t salt
1 c unsweetened applesauce
1/2 c non dairy milk
1 T veg oil (I used it, but will try it without next time)
1 T light molasses
1 T apple cider vinegar
1/2 c Raisins
1/4 c nuts
* and I threw in some blue berries that needed to be used up, a great addition!

Mix all together, spoon into muffin pans sprayed with Pam, Bake 350 degrees for 15-20 min.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The documentary that hit me between the eyes.

About three weeks ago I ran into this movie on our instant Netflix list.  I hadn't put it there, but it kind of perked my interest, and so I decided to watch it while I was working at my sewing machine.  Somewhere into the show I quit sewing and just watched.....  It's obviously a low budget movie, and there were parts where I found my mind wandering, but despite that - when it was over I found myself thinking, "How stupid are we?!  I've got to get Dave to watch this and we're going to make major changes over here."  My husband had recently had his annual checkup and was AGAIN told he needed to lose weight, and he has several health concerns that hadn't improved over the past year..in fact one of his pills was increased to 2 pills.  This was not being a good trend.

In a nut shell, we....who live in the greatest country in the world, are the least healthy and eat the worst diet.  Because of habit, traditions, wrong education, special interest groups who promote unhealthy food choices, self-indulging, etc. we've gotten away from the simple, clean foods that allows the body to heal and take care of itself.....and instead we rely on pills and the medical community to fix us - a well meaning community of specialists who are not educated in nutrition and to prevent , but to treat the symptoms with operations and prescriptions.

It's hard to change a life time of eating a certain way.  I have all these great recipes now...I can't use them any more?  There isn't a single place to go out to eat that offers what we're trying to eat now, do I have to prepare EVERY meal EVERY day for the rest of my life?    What do I serve if I'm not eating meat any more?  How do I bake anything without dairy and oils?  But I Love, Love, Love chips and salsa.  And Ice cream...can I possibly give that up - my mostest favorite thing in the world to eat.  Every single social function we attend seems to have food involved, do we just look weird and not eat, or eat and mess up our new life style?  The excuses and questions go on and on and on.  It's not easy.  I've ordered several books, and spent a good amount of time on the internet visiting web sites and blogs that cater to this type of lifestyle, trying to get ideas and inspiration.  Luckily I'm not having to fight my husband on this.  If he hadn't watched the movie, I know I would be.  You can Not watch that movie without realizing that the way most of us typically eat is bad.  Even if you think you are eating healthy, you realize and have to admit, you really are eating unhealthy.

As members of the church we belong to most of us wouldn't dream of drinking a cup of coffee or a beer, smoke a cigarette - heck no, that's not good for you.  But give us a juicy steak, a brownie or piece of cheese cake, lets heap on butter and sour cream on that baked potato (even better, dish up plenty of those Funeral Potatoes!) pizza, yum! French fries and hamburgers (with cheese and bacon, too, please.)   Ever been to a community breakfast?  Eggs, fried hash browns, gravy over biscuits, sausage, pancakes, milk and OJ. Who doesn't like those?  Who would want to attend a breakfast where they are serving oatmeal and almond milk? We are so brain washed as to what is healthy any more, and even when we know something is unhealthy - we still eat it. We, as a society, are generally fairly smart people - but we are Dumb...beyond stupid when it comes to what we subject our bodies to - and then are unhappy when our bodies break down and can't perform correctly any longer. (It's quite impressive in the movie to watch people with serious health problems change their eating to a whole plant based diet and after a matter of weeks see high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes drop drastically and even sometimes completely go away.  I didn't realize the body was able to do that, all by itself, if it's just given the chance.)

I have been inspired.  This is worth all the work and effort it's going to take and all the negativity, teasing, and raised eyebrows I'm sure we'll get from those we know.  All I can say is "Watch the movie."  If that doesn't at least make you rethink a few things, then continue on your way down the same path as the rest of normal, unhealthy and fat Americans.

Just a little P.S. here.  You know the old saying - it's more expensive to eat healthy than unhealthy?  I beg to differ.  My grocery bill has gone down about 40%.  Now that I'm not buying the meats, dairy, oils, canned and packaged stuff & goodies I now have tons of money to spend in the produce department.  I can buy all those expensive fruits and vegetables that I always thought cost too much to buy.  I'm finding that eating black beans instead of meat isn't a big deal...I don't miss the meat at all! I'm becoming more educated about whole grains and legumes.  My refrigerator looks like a tropical garden when you open it's doors. Our meals look different than they used to, I find I'm eating less food but I'm never hungry.  I'm sleeping better. We're both losing weight.  I can't complain about any of it - except why it took me so long to make this choice.