Real Foods Do Not Have Ingredients
Making a trip to an average American supermarket can be quite overwhelming. It can be alarming for someone on a mission to eat properly, and maybe even adventurous. However, there is good news. Although there are plenty of choices for places to shop, most options will offer fresh fruits and vegetables right when you walk in. And for the average citizen, this is the only section you should be grabbing from. You can plan your entire meal from these aisles at your local stores. Learn to enjoy picking ripe fruits, smelling fresh vegetables and selecting the best breed.
A semi-filled shopping cart with carefully selected fruits and vegetables is actually quite pleasing. One on a journey of better health should find comfort in the fact that over eating or gaining weight from fresh vegetables is practically impossible. Let this boost your confidence and make you happy. Train yourself to listen to your body and to feel the benefits that comes from a fresh produce diet.
If you take the time to write a shopping list you should be good to go. However, you also want to be prepared for surprises. Sometimes I go shopping (even well prepared) I find my plans derailed by an unbelievable sale. Or sometimes there is a new vegetable variety I did not expect to find. This is why I often enjoy the surprises from my local grocer. It allows me to follow my feeling. Just the other day I went shopping and this is what I discovered:
- 1 head of gorgeous organic cauliflower
- 2 heads of broccoli
- 4 large Idaho potatoes
- a pint of button mushrooms
- 3 heads of butter lettuce
- some Meyer lemons
- 2 oz of raw sliced almonds
I always keep some basic ingredients in my pantry as well. Salt, pepper, apple cider vinegar, grape seed oil, safflower oil, butter, sugar and agave syrup are my must haves. With these and my discoveries from the fresh produce sections of my store here is what i prepared:
Cauliflower: I cleaned and cut the cauliflower into equally sized pieces and blanched them until soft in my blanching liquid (1 gallon water, 3/4 cup salt). Next, I shocked (ice water) and drained the cauliflower. After shocking I browned the cauliflower in a pan with safflower oil.
Broccoli: I washed and cut the broccoli into even pieces. I placed the broccoli in a bowl and sprinkled some salt, pepper and safflower oil. I tossed the mixture well and placed it on a baking sheet lined with baking paper. I baked this in the oven for 1 hour at 400 degrees.
Potatoes: I washed them well using a pot scrubber. Then wrapped them up in aluminum foil and placed them in the oven at 400 degrees for about 1 and 1/2 hour (until they were soft). I let them cool off slightly and then removed the aluminum and cut them into pieces. I followed this with sprinkling some salt and pepper as well as melted butter on the potatoes.
Mushrooms: I washed and cut the mushrooms into equally thick slices. I melted some butter and cooked the mushrooms until lightly browned in a pan. I season the mushrooms with salt and pepper.
Butter lettuce: I washed and cut the leaves into equally sized pieces. In a bowl I combined 1 part vinegar, 3 parts grape seed oil, 1 part sugar and some salt. I tossed the leaves in the mixture.
Almonds: I toasted the almonds in the oven for about 10 minutes at 400 degrees.
Meyer Lemons: I simply made some juice.
Here is how I presented the prepared ingredients:
I placed the cauliflower in the center of my dinner plate forming a circle. Then I placed the potatoes around the cauliflower circle. I combined the broccoli, mushrooms and almonds in a bowl and tossed them well before adding some fresh Meyer lemon juice. I tossed the mixture again and then placed it nicely on top of the potatoes. I served the salad separately in a bowl. And all I can say is Yum. It was simple, fresh, delicious and filling!
Of course I could have saved money and time by purchasing dry spaghetti and a jar of tomato sauce. This could have made me some basic pasta. However I doubt there is any real amount of nutritional value in shelf-stable foods. And this would make me personally feel intellectually empty and mildly insulted.
There is no doubt that eating healthy at home is time consuming, maybe expensive and sometimes messy. However, it is also rewarding, healthy and creates family values. When you seek to add something really worthwhile to your cooking efforts try the Grow.Bar system. It's an easy and stylish approach to growing tiny veggies and herbs. And you are able to do so right in your kitchen, 365 days per year. I even finished my butter head lettuce (listed above) with some homegrown radish from my Grow.Bar.
Real foods simply don't have ingredients. If you find yourself investigating a label on food you may find ingredients you don't understand. You should just put that down. Don't even bother trying to figure out what exactly it is you are eating. Walk back to the vegetable isle. Inspire your own creativity and health. And remain conscious as you build a better quality of life.