I like food. Cooking and baking from scratch offers the same satisfaction as sewing my own clothing. I can customize, experiment, tweak, and I constantly look for ways to create more nutritious, delectable foods. It doesn’t always work out, but my husband is a very understanding man. He once ate carrot gravy, without a sniffle.
The last few months, however, I’ve found myself listlessly making the same cheap meals repeatedly, bored by the menus and restricted by careful budgeting. I thought to try going on the Ration- eating the same restricted diets Brits ate during WW2. I kept close tabs on our food consumption for a few weeks and came to the conclusion we eat less fat, less meat, and more vegetables than those on the Ration.
So much for that idea.
I found Mireille Guiliano’s French Women Don’t Get Fat at the Library and took it home, expecting a cookbook. Mireille breaks down traditional French ideas regarding food, and explains how to apply that to your daily cooking/eating. She expounds portion control, eating seasonal fruits and vegetables, and preparing balanced meals while allowing yourself the pleasure of delicious and sometimes fattening foods. Of course, the book has recipes, but I find the philosophies of food much more inspiring.
One tenet in particular caught my attention- no multi-tasking while eating. She outlines how to sit at a table and only eat, allowing yourself to savor the textures and flavors of your food. No standing up, no TV, no blogging. In the same vein, she discusses the importance of presentation for heightening the enjoyment of your meal. Mireille asks “Would you rather wash extra dishes or be fat?” and I had to laugh. While it’s primarily a health/weight-related book, I’m finding I enjoy cooking and eating again.
First, I tried Magical Breakfast Cream. I don’t usually love plain yogurt, but now look forward to this every morning, and sometimes make it as a snack.
- NUT & CEREAL MIX (enough for 7 days)
- 1/2 cup (1-1/2 ounces) toasted walnuts
- 2 cups (4 ounces) Original Shredded Wheat or other sugarless cereal
- PER SERVING
- 1/2 cup (3 ounces) 0% or 2% Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon good olive oil
- 1 teaspoon honey
- scant 3 tablespoons (1/2 ounce) Nut & Cereal Mix
- Juice & pulp of half a lemon or orange (my favorite)
In a small food processor, grind the walnuts and cereal. Transfer to a covered container and refrigerate.
To serve, spoon the yogurt into an individual serving bowl. Stir in the oil first, then the honey, creating a lighter, slightly sweeter yogurt. Top with the Nut & Cereal Mix, sprinkle the lemon juice over top, then stir it all up. Serve and savor, one small bite at a time.
I use oat bran, walnuts, no oil (though I have a flask of flaxseed oil to use), and oranges. After three weeks of eating this and cutting down on two “baddies,” I feel lovely. I’m full until lunch time, too. My measurements are finally back to pre-holiday (way back before Thanksgiving) and some of my more recently made garments need taking in.
But mostly, it’s really delicious and I had to share the recipe. My husband (son of a cheese-maker) learned to make my yogurt from milk. This means less packaging, and less expense as milk is cheaper than yogurt. I might persuade him to guest-post on yogurt making…