Archives for: March 2011
One moment my Honorable Husband and I were at home alone, the next moment the house was full. DD and her boyfriend arrived from one direction, SS arrived from the other. DD & I were in the kitchen cooking. Laughter bubbled up from the living room.
I had asked both kids to request favorite foods. SS wanted butternut squash soup. DD wanted quiche and salmon croquettes.
I wish I could tell you that I make the butternut squash soup that SS likes from scratch, but I don’t. I can get low sodium butternut squash soup from Pacific Natural Foods at my grocery store. I think the first time I bought it I found one avoid down at the bottom of the ingredient list. It was not significant enough to deter me from buying the soup again. My husband, son and I love it.
DD’s boyfriend is Type O, so one night before SS had to go back to work, I made lamb with stir fried asparagus and sweet potato fries. I seasoned the asparagus with Mrs. Dash’s no salt seasoning and it was delicious.
Quiche is a joke in my family. Back in the 70s there was a book called “Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche." HH took that literally and refuses to eat quiche. DD and I get around the difficulty in semantics by baking egg pie. You may remember that for Easter in 2008, she and I created an egg pie recipe for a brunch at church. I haven’t made it in quite a while, and I was so glad DD thought of it. I had some Buddy’s sausage (made with chicken and no nitrites). It was perfect in the pie.
The simplest and most surprising thing I cooked at Spring Break was okra. We got home one late one afternoon from an excursion and I was scrambling to cook a quick and healthy dinner. I sent DD and her boy friend to the freezer to find a vegetable. They came back with okra. HH likes okra and tomatoes, but he doesn’t really care for plain okra. There was no time to cook the okra properly. For some reason I thought of a jar of marinara sauce that I had in the pantry. Classico Tomato & Basil sauce has no preservatives, no sugar, and no corn syrup. It is made with olive oil. I poured half a jar over the okra and started it cooking. Oh my, it was delicious. I will make okra this way again.
I have made salmon croquettes several times, and have never been completely satisfied with them. This time I read half a dozen recipes. I borrowed a little from one and a little from another. The result was the best salmon croquettes I have ever tasted. Of course I will share the recipe with you.
1 can salmon
1 tsp Braggs Amino Acids (you can substitute Tamari sauce and or lemon juice)
½ tsp garlic powder
2-4 Tablespoons rice flour
Sauté onion in ghee or oil. Mix salmon, eggs and Braggs. Add onion. Add seasonings. Add flour 1 Tbsp at a time until salmon mixture is mushy but not watery. Form into patties and fry in light olive oil in a skillet on the stove.
The secret it that the patties be mushy when you start cooking them. If they are firm at the beginning, they will be too dry when they are done.
I have had children in school for 21 years. About half way through Spring Break it dawned on me that this is my last school holiday as a parent. DD is finishing her senior year in May. I am rapidly approaching the end of an era.
I have neglected blogging, but have not neglected the BTD during Spring Break. Everyone in my family was sick except me. I’m sure beneficial foods that act like medicine had something to do with that, though there must be other factors as well since DD is every bit as conscientious as I am.
Spring colds did not keep us from enjoying Spring Break. We cooked some delicious food – I have one really good recipe to share. We took some fun hikes in the Hill Country. We ate at some very friendly BTD restaurants. I’ll write about all of that in my next blog.
But today I’m going to tell a story about an incident that happened this morning that you might be able to relate to. After battling a bad cold for three weeks, my Honorable Husband was almost well. HH is prone to sinus infections, and our old city doctor would give him antibiotics if a cold dragged on for more than a week. Our new country doctor refused to do that. She said that there was no indication of an infection, and she told him to get a saline spray for his nose and keep taking cough syrup and mucus thinners. I was cheering on the inside, but I couldn’t show it because HH was furious. In the end he had to admit that the new doctor was right. He got over the cold without antibiotics.
Just as he was feeling like himself again, HH had what appears to be another diverticulitis attack. It was hard to tell at first, because diverticulitis has all of the same symptoms as a stomach bug – abdominal pain and fever. He admitted that he has been constipated, but had not done anything to remedy the situation. Worse, he admitted that he only goes to the bathroom about every two days. That is not good for colon health, so I began thinking of things he can do to get his bowels moving.
When we woke up this morning, I told him to go to the kitchen and drink a full glass of water before breakfast. A few minutes later I found him in the office on the computer. “Did you drink your water?” I said. No, he hadn’t made it to the kitchen yet. “Go,” I said with authority. “Get the water now.”
When I arrived in the kitchen HH was drinking something with color. “What are you drinking?” I asked.
“Water,” he said with irritation.
“No,” I said. “That is not water. What is it?”
“It’s leftover tea from last night and I filled up the rest of the glass with water,” he said.
I explained about sphincter muscles and how plain water will go straight through an empty stomach and start your bowels moving.
Suddenly I saw a couple of parallels. People say the BTD is hard. I’ve said that myself. But it’s not really hard. People just don’t want to follow simple instructions about completely avoiding foods that everybody around them is eating. We want to do things our own way and still enjoy maximum health. Some people may get away with doing that in the short run, but in the long run it will catch up with them.
The second parallel is in my spiritual life. I do this to God all the time. The instructions in the Bible are quite clear and relatively simple. Do this, and it will be to your benefit. But I don’t want to do things God’s way. I change things. I stop to do something I want to do. I add to or subtract from the simple instructions. I saw my own self will and my stubbornness in my husband’s behavior about the easy directions to drink a glass of plain water when he first gets out of bed.
Do a little Spring Break self analysis. Are you eating the BTD way or your own way? Are you living a life that honors the God who created you, or are you making up your own rules? Don’t miss out on the physical and spiritual blessings that come from a life of simple obedience.
Yesterday 13 lucky ladies in the hiking club loaded up our cars and drove to Austin. There is a green belt in Austin called Lower Barton Creek with a hike and bike trail. We hiked 8 miles in delightful springtime weather. The skies were cloudy so it was not too warm. Little violets and big red bud trees were blooming beside the trail. The trees all had delicate green buds. It was enchanting. Spring has not yet arrived in the higher elevations of the Hill Country where I live.
We had all packed lunches and at the 4-mile post we began to look for a place to eat. Around the bend were some large boulders under a cliff. It was the perfect picnic area. I took two sushi nori rolls for lunch. Both were made with turkey and feta cheese. They caused quite a bit of comment from the other ladies. I also took a sweet potato, an apple, and a bag of carrots and celery. I anticipated being hungry during a long hike.
As we got close to the end of the trail the ladies began to talk about a famous little food stand called The Mighty Cone. The consensus of the hikers was to stop at The Mighty Cone before returning home.
I had guessed correctly about the amount of food I needed, so I was not particularly hungry. It’s never a good idea to eat just because everyone else is eating, so I went along for the fun, but did not order anything. The menu at The Mighty Cone is limited. You can get a cone with shrimp, chicken, avocado or a combination.
As my friends picked up their orders, I have to admit, I have never seen anything remotely like the fare served at The Mighty Cone. They started with a paper cone. In it they put a flour tortilla, so that the tortilla also took on a cone shape. In the cone they put a scoop of Cole slaw. On top of that they put the toppings. All three were deep fried. Now, fried chicken and fried shrimp are common, but I never imagined deep fried avocado. On top of that was drizzled Thousand Island dressing.
I was so glad I had not ordered. It was a nightmare from a BTD or any other kind of nutritional perspective. But the ladies all seemed to enjoy it.
No experience should ever be wasted. As I was preparing my lunch today, I had a bowl with leftover ground beef, mustard greens, and black eyed peas. I sprinkled on some curry powder and turmeric before I warmed it up. I fixed my husband a turkey sandwich with some Cole slaw. Suddenly I thought of The Mighty Cone. Into my bowl I put two handfuls of chopped cabbage. It added a lot of crunch and I liked it.
So hurrah for The Mighty Cone with its nest of Cole Slaw and meat on top. But spare me from deep fried anything, particularly deep fried avocado.