Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Challenge I'm Up For...

Last night I was watching the first episode of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. I have been meaning to sit down and watch for some time - the whole idea intrigues me.

It was sad to see the reaction he was getting from the adults - they were so unwilling to even TRY to change the school lunch program to some healthier fare. The kids of course chose school pizza over fresh chicken drumsticks - much to Jamie's shagrin - Duh!

What got me was when he told this mother, "This is going to kill your children early!" She was in shock to see it all laid out.



Even though they are exposed to a variety of healthy foods, 3/4 of my kids would still choose the greasy fried meat tacos my neighbor serves up before my homemade split pea soup and cornbread. Hands down. Grease tastes awesome*. And until children gain some maturity and can think with their heads instead of their mouths - I think we are fighting an uphill battle.

*Healthy food tastes amazing too, but not if you're regularly eating S.A.D. food (Standard American Diet) everyday. You have to change your palate.

This is not to say I am not willing to fight. I know someday...SOMEDAY my kids will thank me for exposing their palates and their minds to extremely healthy food. (I say extremely cause Jaime's version of "healthy" and my version of "healthy" are pretty different)

But I'm ok with it.

My job as a parent it to teach my children everything they need to know to be healthy, happy, productive members of society.

They do not eat perfectly. Come on they are kids - and I will not be a control freak about every bite that enters their mouths.

But I provide healthy, nutritious meals as often as possible, teach them to eat their veggies, and educate them on what types of diets cause what types of diseases.

Is this outrageous? To me it is common sense.


This week's yummy grub:

Oven Roasted Asparagus

Douse with water, and sprinkle with sea salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Roast in 400 degree oven until tips are a tad crispy. I can eat a whole bunch myself. Watch out for stinky pee after wards though. Sorry, that was gross.

Trader Joe's I love you. Let me count the ways.
1. Spicy Black Bean Dip. I know I can make my own - but it's so nice you are just there for me.
2. Papaya Mango Salsa and Pico de Gallo - again, could do it - but it tastes better coming from you!

Have you tried these? Corn Tortilla Flatbreads with Sesame Seeds. You can dip them in salsa's like a chip. They are salty, crunchy and FAT FREE!


And lastly, on my never ending search for healthy cookies, here is one from Vegetarian Times magazine. These were tried and tested on a group of normal eaters - and they loved them.

Oatmeal Cookies with Lemon Icing from Vegetarian Times Feb. 2010 issue

INGREDIENTS

2 Tbs flaxseed meal

1 C oat flour (I ground 1-1/2 C of oats to reach a cup of ground)

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

2 Tbs margarine (Earth Balance) ...or butter - I just used more applesauce.

1/2 C light brown sugar

1/4 C sugar

1/4 C applesauce (or they recommend prune puree)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1-1/2 C old-fashioned oats

1/2 C raisins or dried cranberries (I used 1/4 C golden raisins and 1/4 C of orange-flavored craisins)

Icing:

3/4 C confectioners' sugar

2 Tbs lemon juice


DIRECTIONS
Stir together flax meal and water in a small bowl; set side. Whisk together oat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl; set aside. Beat margarine, brown sugar and sugar with an electric mixer, 1-2 mins, or until light and fluffy. Add applesauce, vanilla and flax meal mixture and beat until smooth. Stir in oat flour mixture with a spatula or wooden spoon. Add oats and raisins/craisins, stir to combine. Cover and chill 2 hours or overnight. (I didn't even read this part until now - so I did not chill) - But would be good to make at night and pop in the oven for breakfast!

Preheat oven to 350. Line baking pans with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray. (I used silicone mats). Roll cookie dough into golf ball-sized rounds, and place them 1-1/2" apart on baking sheets. Flatten each cookie to 1/4" thickness with the bottom of a drinking glass dipped in water. (My dough was very moist, I couldn't have rolled them into balls - so you can add a splash more milk to get them more moist like mine, or try them like this.)

Bake 10-12 mins or until cookies look dry on top and are just starting to brown.
Meanwhile, to make icing: Whisk together the confectioners' sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl until smooth. Icing should be thick, but spreadable. Gently brush icing on hot cookies with a pastry brush. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store cookies in an airtight container. Enjoy!



Per cookie: 99 cal. 2 G. Protein, 2 G fat, O mg CHOL, - but take out the margarine and you have even less calories and no fat!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Artichokes and Brownies

Sorry about the lapse in posts. I've been letting my "To Do" list overwhelm me. My new, more realistic goal is to post once a week and share anything new in my low-fat vegan world. I'm not promising it will always be exciting - but maybe it will be enough to spur you on to some of your own great ideas...


Steamed Artichokes with Soy Sauce and Wasabi

Upon trying to think of WHAT to dip my artichokes in that was not a gazillion grams of fat - and wasn't just plain old barfy fat free salad dressing (no offense you lovers of this) I came up with just plain old soy sauce mixed with wasabi. (think sushi). I have been craving them about every other day since! It's SO delicious - as I think soy sauce has buttery undertones and tastes rich at times. Maybe I'm just too deprived. And on a side note, I called my mom to tell her - and she had JUST thought of that herself the night before!! (Crazy!) I get my genius from my mom, what can I say.

No-Pudge Fudge Brownies with Better'n Peanut Butter

Sometimes there are sweet cravings that no cup of chamomile tea or piece of fruit will conquer. These brownies are not vegan (they contain egg whites) but I look the other way. I'm not a fanatic. And I AM SO EXCITED about this peanut butter I found at Trader Joe's. It is only 20% fat compared to 75% in regular. I make a single serving (2 TBS. brownie mix + 1 TBS. Applesauce) microwave it for 45 sec. And I only add about 2 teaspoons of the peanut butter (but you can have 1 TBS. for 50 calories) That makes this dessert 170 calories!! Nothing to feel guilty about.

Have a great week!!
 

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