Yes, Dear Ones, I DO Eat Healthy Food

I love all my readers, I really do, you’ve become more family to me than, well relatives. However, I have one reader who gets very upset when I write about eating pizza with grape jelly or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with mashed potatoes and Baked Lays.

Big Salad

Big Salad (Photo credit: kattebelletje)

It’s true, I do like weird combinations at times. But, my goodness, give me some credit. I don’t eat this ALL the time, just once in a great while as a treat. Now, I know that most people don’t think pizza with grape jelly is a treat BUT, I only do it if the pizza is dry and sub par. Try it sometime, give it a chance. Wink Wink. Let me know?

I gave eating fish a chance and now I like some of it, except for salmon which was ruined for me forever. (See the post I Hate Salmon…) I will eat mild fish and I only myself to try it when we were in Florida on vacation. I tried it several times and I can kinda sorta say “I like it.” If I had to choose fish or a petite filet mignon, would I pick fish? Not a chance but I am open to the idea of eating it and we don’t eat red meat very much at all.

Another thing to consider is that there is no income coming in to our house and there has not been any income coming in for almost a year. I’m not complaining, it’s the worst job market ever but we do eat scrambled eggs and toast once a week and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches once a week. You can’t blame me for that.

When we go shopping we buy chicken not steak, good food is for good news only and we haven’t had any of that lately. We keep saying that if any good news happens, we will go out to eat and celebrate. I’m not sure we believe in good news anymore.

Our condolence prize is a pizza pie once every two weeks or so. It’s not the end of the world. My husband is a good cook and when I try I am adequate cook as well. Lately, there hasn’t been time to cook since I am literally spending each day going to a different doctor trying to find out why I pass out and end up face down on the floor.

The medical factory that I go to has lined up every single test in the world. I understand why they do it and that is why I have cooperated pleasantly but it’s not as if I am home, watching Orange is the New Black and eating ice cream bon-bons.

Strawberry rhubarb compote

Strawberry rhubarb compote (Photo credit: Kitchen Wench)

So, while I appreciate your concern, please do not worry, (biological sister and twin) because it’s not as bad as it seems. On the stove now I am cooking a fruit compote with rhubarb, strawberries, blueberries and a few prunes in a slow simmer with Sugar In The Raw. I’m not even using fake sugar (yet.) I love this stuff and I love cooking it.

We had a huge green salad for dinner, steamed asparagus and half of a leftover lobster roll with cold cucumber yogurt dill soup. See?  Do you feel better? I do have good food habits but writing about them is not nearly as entertaining as the other stuff. Is it?

PS THANK YOU FOR CARING!

Read Comfort Food, Larry and Lola

Advertisements

Calling All Cheeseburgers (Food Cop)

We have eaten salad for the last four nights. Our daughter, the vegetarian, approves. I’m glad and it’s healthy but I cannot go another night eating just salad.

Salad

Salad (Photo credit: SliceOfChic)

I need a cheeseburger.

I’m not kidding, I really miss red meat and I haven’t had any in months. You would think this would be the time to turn off my craving for red meat and stick to vegetables but why really?

We eat so little of it that I don’t think I should blame myself for having a little red meat when I want, it’s like my blood is calling out for iron. Okay, it’s basically because I am craving the cheeseburger and the french fries, I admit it.

English: Homemade cheeseburger with french fries.

English: Homemade cheeseburger with french fries. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tomorrow, my husband and I are going to get cheeseburgers at a small place in the neighborhood. Their burgers are absolutely divine, their french fries are thin crispy and salty. My cholesterol is fine and my weight is wonderful. I exercise. I look good.

Why am I rationalizing this treat? I have no idea. I guess it seems like I should. Partially because I know our daughter will look down or be disappointed at us but then that happens often she is turning twenty very soon. I can deal with that.

Tonight I ate eggplant with tomato sauce. I had to have a snack at midnight, the salad and eggplant left me starving at 11:30 pm.

eggplant with fresh tomato sauce

eggplant with fresh tomato sauce (Photo credit: Endless Simmer)

I am looking forward to biting into a medium cooked juicy cheeseburger, crisp fries dunked in ketchup and the small salad that comes with it (which I may or may not eat.)

I can’t wait.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

Plinky Prompt: Good News, How Do YOU Celebrate? (Food Pop)

  • English: A shrimp cocktail.

    English: A shrimp cocktail. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  • You receive some wonderful, improbable, hoped-for good news. How do you celebrate? See all answers
  • Celebrate good times
  • Food, Glorious Food. Always Food. If I had to drink I’d have half of one very weak Amaretto Sour, which I learned about from my college age kids.I would then quickly change to cranberry-pineapple juice. Several, no ice, please. But, celebration and happiness go hand in hand with a really good meal with my family at a fabulous restaurant.

    Some of the choices would be:

    Hot French Dinner Rolls, with (Soft) Butter

    Appetizers: Shrimp Cocktail (the shrimp is just a vehicle for the cocktail sauce) salad, small but entertaining with many ingredients i(.e. raisins, avocado, cheese, fresh tomatoes,) creamy leek soup, crunchy lamb spring rolls with a yogurt dill sauce. All of the above.

    Entrée:
    Beef Wellington
    Filet Mignon
    Chicken (the one with the fresh lemon sauce and capers)
    Lobster (out of the shell, grilled, buttered with cream sauce if or plain.

    Side orders of:
    Rice, Grilled Asparagus, glazed carrots, roasted baby brussel sprouts with carmelized onions, creamed spinach

    Dessert:
    Chocolate layer cake (Hazelnut mousse inside)
    Blueberry and almond bread pudding, marzipan
    Vanilla/almond cake
    Vanilla/Chocolate ice cream
    Fresh berries in season (ha ha ha)

  • Oh, and the meal is free. Congratulations to me.
  • English: chocolate-hazelnut mousse cake

    English: chocolate-hazelnut mousse cake (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An Open Letter To My Fat Clothes

My mixed up salad

Dear Fat Clothes,

The first thing I have to say is: DON’T WORRY! I am in no way getting rid of you, not now, not ever. Forget what they say in all those Weight- Anonymous -Watch- What -You Are -Eating – Weigh- In -Clubs. I say NO. After being a three life-time membership winner to one of the above happy family groups I say, don’t listen. I will NOT throw you out or give you away because there is that chance that I will slip back to my slovenly ways again. I might. I’m not saying I want to but the truth is that it’s a possibility and I need to deal with that.

If it makes me feel better to have a corner in the back of my closet that have looser clothes for when I fluctuate (that I can theoretically wear on grundgy days) so be it. It makes me feel good to know that I have them. In fact, I believe you will find a whole array of sizes in my closet like a mini-mart of clothes. That’s alright too. Maybe I will get thinner some day, maybe I won’t. Right now I am comfortable where I am; I am right where I usually end up and if I put an effort into exercising a little more each day I will be downright proud.

The most important thing is that my eating habits have changed completely. I make healthy choices, yes to salad and vegetables, fruit and chicken; no to Twinkies and Snowballs. I haven’t had red meat for the last three months but I am considering eating it a burger on the grill sometime in the near future.

I hate to admit it but smaller portions and moderation are key. Also, I never drank any fluids during the day except my first cup of really strong coffee but I try to drink water now and have limited diet soda drinks, though haven’t cut it out completely (I’m working on it).

I’m not skinny nor am I fat, I’m comfortable, eating well and I’m sure my cholesterol is down. (It better be.)

So clothes, don’t despair, you are not going anywhere. You are staying here with me. Right where I need you and where you belong.

Love, Me

Mint Chip Ice Cream Does So Taste Like Toothpaste…..( A Crazy Foodie Blog)

Crest MultiCare Whitening toothpaste

Image via Wikipedia

Tonight I had left-over pizza for dinner. It was dry, it had that too- long- in -the- refrigerator smell and the fresh tomato, mozzarella and basil disappeared. I warmed it up but nothing changed. I had to make it taste better, we were out of food so I did what I have done since college (yes, I have witnesses) I put jam on my pizza. We only had Dominoes pizza way back then ( don’t worry, Dominoes, I’m sure your pizza is better now.) I was out of luck,I did not have Welchs’ grape jelly at home. I knew there MUST be something to help me out.  Two minutes later, I saw it gleaming and sitting on the side of the refrigerator door practically winking with a come-hither look.  A jar of peach preserves sat unopened. It gave the pizza the texture it needed and if I closed my eyes it was like eating French bread with jam. Thank you for saving my dinner.

There are questions that are just unanswerable: For example: why is it that I love peanut butter but hate peanuts? I don’t like chick peas but I do like hummus.  Could texture be an issue? Keep me far away from raw oysters, mussels or raw tuna. Tuna from a can mixed with celery and mayo does not count since it was YEARS before I associated the canned tuna with  real fish.

I’m s little fussy with my food, I admit it.  I also have the nose of a foxhound and if milk is even contemplating spoiling I sniff it out immediately and throw it away . “Dear Grocery Store Stocker, don’t think you’ll ever fool because I know not to take the product in the front and I check the expiration dates. I am on alert at all times, always saying  out loud “Did you think you could fool me? Amateur!!!!”  So what if I get a couple of weird looks?

I love eggs in any form but if I detect the tiniest bit of egg-shell in my food, crunching in my mouth it takes enormous self-control not to vomit, especially if I am in a restaurant.  IF I have been brave enough to swish it away in my mouth with juice or soda, ( can’t do it with plain water) there is no way that I would eat anymore. Also, if the egg white is not cooked through I can’t eat it (see texture issue). It’s almost as bad as  finding a hair in my food (again, think restaurant) which I think is also appalling. That is why, I sniff and explore my food before my first bite.  I think of myself as having certain food requirements: no egg-shell, spoiled stuff, hair in food, oh, and dead insects.

The last time I had a Greek salad in my favorite tiny Greek restaurant it was served with a dead bee lying right on top. Is it too much to ask that people look at the food before they serve it? I haven’t been back to that restaurant in two years now. I know about the chances of having it happen again but still….This is why when I go to a restaurant I face away from the kitchen. As you can tell,  I did read Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain and it both saved my life and ruined my life at the same time. Blame him.

Thank You, Erica

Candlelit Table for One

Image by ecstaticist via FlickrI

I am not a paid restaurant reviewer so I am writing about my love of eating good food (not making it.)  I also have great admiration for those who cook incredibly well. Our friends, Mike and Erica, hosted a reunion a few weeks ago and old friends from the East Coast and the West Coast gathered together.  Erica made a divine appetizer of stuffed mushrooms based on Ina Garten’s recipe. It was one of the best things I have ever eaten and this is NOT the Food or Cooking Channel. We ate those amazing stuffed mushrooms with our eager fingers and never have I eaten such different tastes and textures in one appetizer. The sausage, olive oil, cheese, bread crumbs and mushroom appetizer combined with seeing old friends, talking, hugging and laughing, was a highlight of 2010 for me.

It felt like the kitchen scene from the movie, The Big Chill,  except no one died (although one person did leave the dinner table, head to the living room, wrapped himself up in a blanket, appropriated two pillows and apparently fell asleep on the couch for 3 hours.) I couldn’t make this up if I tried.

Presently I fantasize about eating my favorite things in an expensive restaurant.  My husband and I would be seated inside a small dining room near a beautiful fireplace. A small bouquet of red and purple flowers sit prettily on the thickly starched white tablecloth where a soft candle would be burning.

To start, I would have jumbo prawns with cocktail sauce and a wedge of lemon (that had a paper coverlet on it to protect it from seeds.) In some circles the prawns would be the delicacy but in our family we have named the shrimp as the vehicle to which we get to eat the cocktail sauce. Another example of this would be that lobster is the vehicle to get to the melted butter sauce. You get the idea.

After that I would order a salad made with a lemon/olive oil, vinagrette salad dressing (the words truffle and champagne could be added although I don’t know exactly what they do.) Ripe cherry tomatoes, julienned carrots, red cabbage, and chopped parsley and chives would be on top. I love adding sweetness to things so for me, some craisins would be tossed in there as well.

The table is laden with “everything” flat crackers and warm, soft, dinner rolls with butter, room temperature (I hate hard, freezing cold butter)  shaped like sea shells. My entrée would either be the outstanding chateaubriand, like it is prepared at the  restaurant X2O or the divine filet mignon served at the Crabtree Kittle House, both amazing restaurants are located in New York. Rice pilaf or mashed potatoes would work nicely with this meal, but nothing fried and undignified as french fries and ketchup (those go with cheeseburgers only.)  Grilled brussel sprouts paired with a hint of maple syrup glaze and slivered almonds would be our vegetable.

Blood orange or lemon sorbet served in martini glass would be our palate cleanser. It would be served to help settle our wonderful meal and to leave room (not that this has ever been a problem for me) for dessert.  I am a sugar junkie and I like a variety of things so because it is my fantasy I am picking two desserts: a fresh fruit tart served in a marzipan shortbread crust with vanilla custard and a fluffy (never flourless) milk and dark chocolate mousse cake with real vanilla bean ice cream.

Thanks for joining me in my food fantasy. Here’s to 2011, with good friends and great food.  Wishing all of you a Happy, Healthy and delicious New Year.

An Honest Thanksgiving

Tender, juicy roast turkey - the main attracti...

Image via Wikipedia

It will be Thanksgiving in just a few days. While we all are looking forward to moist turkey and my husband’s famous stuffing made with mushrooms and apples, raisins and water chestnuts, I have a small request. Please be kind and sensitive to one another. I don’t worry about what things will taste like; I know they will all be delicious. The only thing I worry about, quite honestly, is drama. Holidays can bring up all sorts of feelings: loss, bereavement, jealousy, resentment, sadness, and despair. Old wounds start to feel new, grievances and perceived injustices start to bubble to the surface. Before we dig in to the mashed potatoes my mother made (cough, cough, bought from a restaurant), and cranberry sauce let us think about each other first. During dessert let us try to rejoice in each others’ company instead of waiting for the air to get thick with tension as dense as brown gravy.

This year, for the first year I have actually mentioned to several members of the family that I am asking for a “drama-free” Thanksgiving. I have chronic pain, my husband has been feeling sad because of  lack of work, please try to remember this.  Work  alongside us, tell us things will be alright eventually. Life is not perfect but Thanksgiving should be about what we are grateful for, not what we lack.

I don’t want to hear sullen complaints about the food or the appetizers and I’m happy to cook and clean, taste, stir, serve and clean-up. I will not be happy with arguments, whispered secrets said too loudly and explosive outbursts. Please just leave your coats and any agendas at the door and please, please think before you speak. Be courteous to everyone else. Don’t brag, insult, or be insensitive to other people’s needs.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my family and friends. May it be peaceful, filled with great warmth, love, gratitude and great food. I am thankful for all of you.  Now, let us eat.

Prednisone, Bitchiness And Me aka The Prednisone Bitch

edvard munch - the scream  1893

Image by oddsock via Flickr

I’ve been on Prednisone before, twice, and both times made me feel groovy, great. I was high on life, my muscles didn’t ache and I was a joy to live with…Not this time. There seems to be an evil lurker inside of my body making me say things without my usual filter and ultra-edit.  I don’t think I am making up the things that I am saying, I just think that Prednisone is making me babble. Like some people on alcohol, their defenses are down, their mouths are open and wide and sputtering. Prednisone to me, is like alcohol and it’s not being easily tolerated by me or frankly,  by my husband.

The worst thing about it? I really don’t care. I feel like a fight and am already on the way to one without stopping at GO.  I’m a loose cannon, feel a little speedy and don’t feel the love tonight. Not from the Prednisone and not from my husband who was/is the unwilling recipient of my sudden quick-fire burst of anger. I don’t think he is in the least bit amused.

I am a lioness growling, a bear attacking, a leopard changing and colorizing it’s spots.   I have never felt this way before but I believe I know what the side effects to Prednisone are….well, at least one of them. I’ll probably gain ten pounds just from eating salad and dry chicken and then I will really be hooting and hollering. Back off, man up, stay away, give me a wide berth. NO, I did not say GIRTH.

I am trying to breathe a little normalcy into my body but the nice person inside me, way deep down inside me, is not having anything to do with it.  It’s laughing at me, taunting me, making me grimace and snarl. This is only my first day of Prednisone, I have 8 more days to go. This could get ugly, oh wait; it already is.

The Ethiopian Food Experience (A Foodie Blog)

For a girl who grew up on Wonder bread, butter and American cheese sandwiches for most of her life eating Ethiopian food was quite the dining experience. I used to be hesitant (ok, stubborn and frightened) by eating new foods until I met my husband who introduced various ethnic food dishes to me with patience. I eat Indian food, Chinese, Japanese (no sushi though) Asian-fusion, Thai and now Ethiopian (Italian food is a given!)  Not only did I enjoy it, I kept up with my husband in terms of handling the various spices and I admit, I was proud. Food to me now is an adventure and I LOVE it.

We ate in a fairly new, small, Ethiopian restaurant  and it was delightful. I felt like I was critiquing for Gourmet Magazine, I was that excited. The decor was simple and understated but truly reflected the beauty and simplicity of Ethiopia. There were a few black and white photographs from Ethiopia on the warm, burnt orange walls. The tables were classic and made out of wood. The restaurant is like sunshine; our waitress was mostly silent though out our meal but the owner was absolutely lovely and talkative.

I was excited to try the Ethiopian, thin, spongy bread called Injera that everybody was talking about. I love eating with my fingers so diving in to tear off a piece of bread and grab and pinch food was not only delicious but fun too. Across the restaurant I saw two men eating with forks and I scoffed; I felt superior (though I still haven’t mastered the art of chopsticks yet.)I can definitely relate to eating with my fingers and getting messy. It’s a grown-up version of your toddler’s tray table.

We started with an avocado salad that was lovely and light, it had chopped onions and tomatoes mixed in (maybe some peppers too). I did miss a dash of salt but I decided to stay in the moment. Interestingly, we brought some home for leftovers and it seemed to have gotten spicier overnight, perhaps it needed time on the bread to absorb the spices. I admit, on the second day it was a little too spicy for me to handle eating.  It was served on the very thin, fermented bread that many say “you either like it or you don’t.” It has a unique taste alone but once you are sopping up delicious sauces with it, it is much more pleasurable. It acts like a sponge absorbing the heat and spice of the food.

We ordered a tasting platter (again served on their bread) and we were delighted with what we got. The platter contained very small portions of three types of meat and three vegetarian dishes. Honestly, sometimes we didn’t now what was what  but we didn’t care. There was a little chicken, a little lamb and I think a little beef though it was quite indescernible. It also came with three different vegetarian samples: puree of peas, lentil and cabbage. I loved the lingering smell on my fingers from the spicy food.

It’s the type of restaurant you want to introduce your friends to. It really is a sweet gem. You WANT this restaurant to succeed and I have no doubt that it will. I’m eager to go again and soon.