Archives for: July 2005
I cut my finger while attempting to pry open frozen salmon patties. My typing is atrocious! The bandaid keeps getting in the way!Grrr..
On a lighter note, I find myself unable to save money by buying raw produce versus the bagged salad because my little six year old won't anything that isn't bag crisp. I think that I am going to have to go back to some of the old ways despite my desire to pinch every possible penny we can. Buying crisp bagged half romaine and half iceberg lettuce is better than no vegetable at all. Luckily, the A's are not so picky. As long as there is olive oil, salt and garlic on the salad, we love it. In fact, I think we prefer salad slightly wilted.
Dinner was unenjoyable tonight due to multi-tasking. I barely get time to eat as I run around playing waitress and chef. I think that from now on, the kids will have two choices at meal times. They can either 'work' at the kitchen sink while I cook (and stimulate those brains along the way) or they can play in their rooms until I am done. The two year old keeps running outside while I am attemtping to cook something on the stovetop, and the six year old keeps asking me for help with the tv, the latest art project, etc. It just upsets my stomach.
Thumbs up to Dad tonight who cooked venison steak for the O's. It smelled delicious. My son gave my apricot raisins muffins a triple thumbs up. It's funny, because the recipe is so simple:
1 cup of buckwheat flour
1 cup of brown rice flour
1 tsp of baking soda
1 tsp of baking powder
1/2 pinch of salt
a little dark brown sugar (to taste)
cinnamon (to taste)
flax seeds (6 to 7 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 can of apricots in fruit juice (no corn syrup here!)
Blend the eggs, oil and apricots together. Combine dry ingredients in a seperate bowl and shake gently until well mixed. Add wet ingredients and mix lightly. Spoon into lined muffin tins and bake at 350 for about 20 - 25 minutes. Allow to cool before serving.
Perfect for an O secretor and gluten free for all those possible A non secretor Celiacs!* Take care everyone!
I finally did it. With school lunches costing 2.70 for a single meal, I justified the cost of buying walnut butter over the internet! I accidently bought sunflower butter for my O at the local health food store, only to find out that it is an avoid for O's! But here's the good news: he ate the sunflower butter mixed with jelly without complaint! I called it "healthy" peanut butter!
So - I am hoping that walnut butter mixed with his favorite pure jelly will pass the taste test! School lunches will finally become a no brainer! (I am hoping.) A's have so many more choices!
Most of my recipes are perfect for a cold winter's night, but this 100 degree weather is killing me! It's amazing how often I get stuck in the 'traditional' way of thinking, which is why I appreciate Janet's blog. I switched out the sweet peppers for a red onion, and leaned heavily on the celery. Both my two year old and I enjoyed it for lunch. In fact, cold black bean salad is next on the list.
Dinner tonight included pan fried tilapia with white rice, a french spice combo (shute, I will have to look that up for the next blog), salt, and a little kelp. It was served with simple white rice, and a red leaf lettuce salad. Soy sauce was used on the rice and simple olive oil was used for the salad. (Hmm., I should have thrown my leftover salted pumpkin seeds and raisins into the salad. Next time, I hope)
It was very filling and very tasty. It's also a kid friendly meal.
I wanted to say thank you to Mrs. "K". It's hard to find the time to blog, but it feels so good to know that I may have inspired someone! Good eating, everyone!
IF you type in Shelton's gluten free on your search engine, it should take you to the right page. I forgot to type in the 's. Sorry!
I found Ezekiel hot dog buns at the health food store. I compromise with my six year old by allowing a little 'junk food' on the weekend. I was glad to replace his traditional white hot dog bun with this healthier version! The A's enjoyed sliced apples and sliced zuchinni with northern bean dip along with gluten free chicken sausage (Amy's.) Scrambled eggs with onion, garlic, salt, and kale along with buckwheat pancakes are on the morning menu. Sardine sandwiches are scheduled for lunch. Well, my six year old is requesting my attention, so that's it for tonight!
Nutrition is such a personal thing. Everyone has their own schedule, their own priorities, and their own “challenges” which hold them back from adapting to change. I think that in order for a person to experience success with menu planning, a nutrition advisor really has to get into their client’s head and understand what they are feeling. That being said, please consider the following breakfast ideas: (O)
One or two slices of Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel bread
Shelton’s beef jerky
A piece of fresh fruit – such as a pear, plums, gala apples, a box of raisins, banana, etc.
One or two slices of Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel bread
Shelton’s turkey jerky
A piece of fresh fruit – pear, plum, raisins, fresh blueberries, dried figs, etc
Vary the bread (there are many flavors out there) and vary the fruit throughout the week. Shelton’s web site is as follows:
Turkey Jerky for Dad – 48481-00970
Beef Jerky for Yourself – 48481-00991
I still feel like I need to eat "green" everyday, and I am always looking for ways to add more green into my meals. Today I threw together:
diced collard green
one big bunch of diced parsley
2 or 3 strips of turkey bacon
black pepper (a little)
Saute all of your veggies in the olive oil. Add salt. Stir well and stir often. 5 - 10 minutes later, add 1 cup of water and one package of Thai rice noodles (any rice noodle will do). These Thai noodles cook up in about 6 minutes (thank you Asian market!). Throw in one big tablespoon of ghee (anytime during the cooking process - it's that slight butter flavor I was after.) When noodles are ready, season with more salt, pepper and corainder seed. Sliced gala apples on the side complemented the dish.
I thought this dish was just a little on the plain side, but my two year old went spastic for these noodles! It warmed my heart knowing that he was inhaling collard greens and parsley! For the adults, I would recommend seasoning your individual bowls with your favorite spice. If my five year old had been with us for lunch, I would have panfried three strips of turkey bacon to a crisp texture using butter or olive oil, and I would have added a few pieces of raw celery to his plate. I might have even added a piece of string cheese (mozerella) or some organic yogurt.
I think catering to the personality differences of the O's and A's is part of a successful meal. I also think using the same main ingredients helps the cook feel less overwhelmed!
*One last note - Shelton's turkey 'strips' are excellent. Unfortunately, they were simply out of my price range for this week. Maybe next week, I will snag a few. Check out Shelton's website if you haven't already.
We had buckwheat / brown rice pancakes this morning with strawberries and maple syrup. I also poured some syrup into my morning coffee. Yum!
As I look over my numbers, I am surprised. Grapes cost as much as the plums! Since plums are a a bene, they win. Mangoes, watermelon, and grapefruit seem to be reasonably priced, and the fresh blueberries are quite cheap at the moment! Bannanas and lemons are a must all year round. When it comes to canned, Liberty Gold wins by leaps and bounds (and there is no corn syrup in it!)
I can save money by taking the time to assemble the following:
baking my own breads whenever possible
assembling at least one beverage (we like the pineapple , prune juice and carbonated water combo)
buying fruit at its peak (best price)
assembling my own lettuce mixes
I will continue to buy "back up" frozen bread, canned beans (the imported beans didn't use calcium chloride and they were cheaper!), and the less expensive fish (ocean caught tilapia and pollack). Gluten free chicken sausages are also a must (stored in the freezer).
I wonder how much meat is actually in a "whole chicken." I mean, how many pounds? It's difficult to compare apples to apples, and I am sure the manufacturers labeled their food that way on purpose!
I love turkey bacon, but I hate the thought of all those nitrates. I forgot to record the cost of canned salmon, but my memory says it's about 1.19 per can (14 oz maybe?) Well, this list will prove handy during my next menu planning. Take care everyone.
I made three trips out to the grocery store in order to determine how to slash our grocery bill without completely slashing the nutritional quality of our menus. My head was spinning with countless numbers and I definitely experienced sensory overload!
However, I have also drawn some definite monetary conclusions, and I believe that I can still deliver quality nutrition to my children while taking some of the strain off of our wallet. *Note – for you O’s out there, we have a freezer full of meat, so I didn’t bother checking on red meat prices. * As for anyone else who is curious, please forgive this very quickly- typed - raw data. It’s not the easiest thing in the world to read!
Meats and Poultry
Al Fresco chicken sausage 3.50 for 12 oz
Tyson whole chickens .79 per pound
Chicken drumsticks 2.29 per 24 oz
Gold N Plump chicken breasts 2.29 per 24 oz
Gold N Plump 8.99 per 55 oz
Pure ground turkey Louis Rich 1.39 per 16 oz
Cornish Hen 2.69 per 22 oz
Jennie O Turkey Bacon Extra Lean 1.89 per 12 oz
Ocean Perch 1.68 per pound
Cod 1.54 per pound
Tilapia .48 per pound
Coho Salmon 4.79 per pound
Pollack 1.51 per pound
Whiting Icy Bay 3.79 per 2 pounds
Halibut 7.00 for 12 ounces
Swordfish 5.99 for 12 ounces
Alaska Sockeye Salmon 8.99 per pound
Orca Bay Salmon 3.49 per 12 ounces
Tilapia (different brand) 2.99 per 16 ounces
Eggs (all about the same if not organic)
Horizon Organic Yogurt .79 per 6 ounces (170 g)
Squeezers 2.69 for 6 packets (454 g)
Stoneyfield Farm Yogurt .69
Farmer Cheese 2.99 per 8 ounces
Moz Cheese 2.59 per pound
Frigo String Cheese 2.99 per 12 ounces
Baker String Cheese 4.89 per 24 ounces
Oleada olive oil extra virgin cold pressed 1 liter for 4.99
Peanuts – raw Spanish 1.49 per pound
Planters Family Pack 3.89 for 24 ounces
East Wind Peanut Butter 3.09 for 16 ounces
Arrowhead Mills Peanut Butter 3.89 for 18 ounces
Eileen’s Pecans 3.79 for 10 ounces
Eileen’s whole almonds 3.39 for 14 ounces
Eileen’s California Walnuts 2.99 for 14 ounces
David Pumpkin Seeds 1.39 for 5 ounces including shells
Great Scott Pumpkin Seeds (no shell ) 3.89 per 10 ounces
Racconto Imported Black Beans .59 per 15 ounces canned
Favo beans (Progresso) 1.69 per 15 ounces canned
Racconto Lentils canned .59 per 15 ounces canned
Cannellini beans Racconto .59 per 15 ounces canned
Randall pinto beans 2.19 per 48 ounces
Randall great northern Beans 1.19 per 24 ounces
Rice and Grains
Quaker lightly salted rice cakes 5.75 ounces for 1.79
Brown rice snaps 3.5 ounces for 3.09
Riceland white rice 1.29 per 32 ounces
5.19 per 10 pounds
Riceland brown rice 1.29 per 32 ounces
.79 per 16 ounces
Brown’s Best 2.39 per 5 pounds or 80 ounces
Jasmine Rice 3.99 per 5 pounds
Sweet Thai rice 2.49 per 5 pounds
Tsurumai (Brown) 3.59 per 5 pounds
Lundberg short grain brown rice 2.39 per 32 ounces
Rice noodles 2.89 per 16 ounces
Amaranth Flour 6.19 per 22 ounces
Flaxseed raw 2.79 per 24 ounces (1 pound 8 oz)
Whole ground flaxseed 2.79 per 24 ounces
Teff 5.59 per 24 ounces
Buckwheat Flour 3.19 per 22 ounces
Brown Rice Flour 4.29 per 48 ounces (3 pounds)
White Rice Flour 2.39 per 24 ounces
Arrowhead white rice flour 4.09 per 2 pounds
Bob’s Creamy Rice Hot Cereal 3.49 per 26 ounces
Ezekiel whole grain bread 3.59 per 24 ounces
Ezekiel cin Raisin bread 4.09 per 24 ounces
Gluten free bread Raisin Pecan 3.89
Gluten free rice almond 4.59
Alfalfa sprouts .99 per ?
Parsley .35 bunch
Spinach .89 per bunch
Collard greens .99 per bunch
Kale .99 per bunch
Leeks .89 per stalk
Beet Greens 1.89 per bunch
Green onions .39 per small bunch
Zucchini .99 per pound
Red leaf lettuce .87 each
Romaine lettuce .89 each
Mushroom 2.39 per 16 ounces
Sweet potatoes .69 per pound
Fresh green beans .99 per pound
Broccoli .99 per pound
Carrots 1.79 per 5 pounds
Organic Celery 1.49 per 1 pound
Celery .99 pound
White onions 1.79 per 2 pounds
Yellow onions 1.39 per 3 pounds
Lemons 3 for 99 cents
Limes 10 for 1.00
Grapefruit .89 each
Watermelon .39 per pound
Mangoes .69 each
Bags of Lettuce
Romaine 32 ounces for 3.49
Italian 10 ounces for 1.99
Dole classic 10 ounces for 1.59
Fresh Romaine 1.59
Spring Mix 5 ounces for 1.79
Spinach 6 ounces for 2.19
Fresh Blueberries 1.49 per 16 ounces
Frozen blueberries Natures 6.19 per 40 ounces
Cherries 3.79 per pound
Plums 1.39 per pound
Peaches .99 per pound
Apples .99 per pound
Grapes 1.39 per pound
Pineapple – canned Liberty gold .69
Prunes – go for the juice
Pineapple juice – 1.29 46 ounces
Juicy Juice (gluten free?) 2.19 for 64 ounces
Juicy Juice boxes – 2.89 per pack of 10 (6.75 ounces)
Liberty gold peaches - .69
Liberty gold pears - .69
Jolly good water (carbonated) - .59
Pacific rice gluten free milk – 1.89 per ?
It warms a mother's heart to see her two children playing in the backyard while our dinner sizzles on the grill. Both boys "ooohed and ahhhhed" over their meals. They also ran straight to the playground afterwards and enjoyed each other's company. Not bad for a six year old and a two year old! My little guy ran around in his diaper while my six year old scaled our miniature climbing wall.
No fighting over "eat your meat" or "eat your vegetables" today! Here's the menu: (o)
Top sirloin steak cooked medium well (just a little pink in the middle) over a gas grill.
Reese's steak salt
roast beef seasoning
Served with gala apples and my son's favorite beverage (chocolate soymilk).
The A's enjoyed:
Grilled salmon with Reese's steak salt and Dad's lemon pepper. Brush the grill with extra virgin olive oil.
White rice cooked with sauteed onions, garlic, salt, collard greens and chicken broth. Dice those collard greens as far down as you can go. Saute the onion and collard green combo for a good 7 or 8 minutes and don't let any stick to the sides of the pan (it will burn or turn bitter).
I have served collard greens every which way (in salads, in scrambled eggs, sauteed in olive oil, and in rice.) I have to say that I have had the most success with diced collard greens cooked in chicken broth. It takes a lot of molar action for a two year old!
With my toddler feeding my dog dozens of doggie vitamins (oh my God) and the weather being a blistering 90 degrees outside, today is one of those "limited" cooking days. I spent the morning baking bread using my machine, dicing onions and garlic (throw them in some olive oil and place them in the fridge for later use), and combining brown rice flour and buckwheat flour into one big container. I will probably throw some northern beans into my crockpot (cook on low for 8 hours) and organize my kitchen tools. I might even get to my new "lentil stew" recipe if I am lucky. The rest of the day is about numerous other chores and errands which need attention.
I look forward to tasting my bread . The ingredients are:
1 cup of applesauce
1 cup brown rice flour
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
8 oz of chopped dates
Now I have not tasted this yet. So be forewarned! But it certainly smells good! Take care.
The turkey idea was ok, but nothing to write about. My two year old looked at it as if to say "What is that?" Turkey bacon made both of my kids smile while I ate my "experiment". It's amazing how a good glass of wine makes a "so-so" dinner taste much better. (ha ha)
I was looking for an old thread titled "Btd'ing on a budget." Sadly, I cannot find it. I did, however, decide that it is time to head back to the grocery store with a simple pad of notebook paper and a pencil. Most of the beneficial foods are memorized in my head, but the gluten free brands are not. It's time to merge two priorites into one. Once I am able to get to the store, I will post my results. It would be interesting to see how prices around here compare with other places.
I would just like to scream. I cut my workouts down to 2 a week during the recent holiday. Between my son’s birthday party and normal festival activities, it seemed like an appropriate compromise. What I didn’t realize is that I went a full seven days without a good workout. Good Lord, the withdrawal is killing me. I wasn’t kidding when I said that I have recently switched addictions. Instead of smoking cigarettes, I lift weights. With the way I have been acting and feeling lately, one could only assume that I just quit smoking yesterday! I am angry at everything and everyone, and my “Parental Patience” gas tank is completely low! Top that with the extra work a holiday creates (I didn’t do any laundry or any housework for two full days), and you’ve got one mean mama!
Which is why I am getting myself back to the YMCA tonight. As I try to juggle my beneficial meals with my “we’ve got to eat before getting in the car” schedule, I switch back and forth between meal plans. What I am lacking is a very good crock-pot meal, which can be assembled before we leave. Certainly, the Cornish Hen recipe worked out well last time, but I don’t have any! Hmmm. I have ground turkey (frozen). I have pre-cut onions in olive oil. I have a completely defrosted piece of steak. I have leftover bacon and pre washed salad. I think that after my mental break, (blogging and reading the BTD forum); I will be assembling our dinner. Laundry gets pushed back one or two spots on the priority list.
(A short time later….). Ok, I have decided to defrost my frozen turkey using running cold water and then set up my crock-pot to cook for two hours on high. I will try to report back on the experiment at a later date.
Take care everyone!
It is so funny. I plan the menu and then I change my mind. Ah well, at least all of the necessary groceries are in the house so that I can change my mind! My five year old claims that he likes spinach, asparagus and carrots. (And I know that he will eat onion if it is pureed into his burgers!)
Once or twice, I have stumbled across an author who talks about BTD’ing on a budget. I need to find that thread and jump into the discussion! It’s not the “cook from scratch” meals that are expensive. It’s the “convenience” gluten-free meals and the lack of cooking knowledge that really make the difference.
I think O’s have it a little rougher in the financial pocketbook. But I also need to admit that I am enjoying my food SO MUCH, that I would gladly give up something else if it guaranteed me $ for the store. I cooked my son steak for lunch. Oh! The smell of grilled steak made my mouth water! More importantly, he ate it without complaint J! The little guy and I had refried black beans (from a can) on a rice cake, carrots, pears, and a homemade granola mix.
We need to hit the road around dinnertime. Ergo, dinner will be simple. I will offer leftovers to the kids and let them decide. Tomorrow morning, I am going to make Lentil Stew for breakfast and I will also offer leftover blueberry waffles. I am missing my ‘cooking day’ immensely, but until the weather cools down, I just can’t bake. Ee vay.
On more than one occasion, I have been able to write some beautiful blogs. Full of whatever new information I had recently acquired and easy to read, I was quite proud of them. Unfortunately, my computer and my Internet connection decided to crash before the final versions were saved. This time, I have learned my lesson! Whether it is a short and rushed ditty or whether it is something I have put my valuable time into, I will use Microsoft Word and save my writings!
The Fourth of July holiday was full of both good and very “bad” food. Quite honestly, if I didn’t rebel every once in a while, I would blow up like a volcano. It is pretty easy to get back on track. I just take a look in the mirror at myself, and then I look at my children’s angelic faces. I think that I have a toddler who is offered the highest quality food in all of Rockford, Illinois. As for the five year old, he is stretching his vegetable boundaries at least! We talk a lot about the fist rule. A fist full of meat, a fist full of fruit, a fist full of vegetable and a fist full of grain are recommended every day. I kind of keep a casual tab running in my head and adjust snacks or meal accordingly. I also keep my sanity by remembering my top three priorities: 1) Get enough sleep 2) Eat good food and 3) Exercise 3 times a week (total body workout!)
Those same three priorities are also my children’s whether they realize it or not. I will back out of obligations or postpone other duties if those three are not met. I cannot do much for my husband, as his priorities are slightly different. But I can at least continue to offer good food and comfort whenever possible.
God is a big priority, too. But I am not the average church attendee. I try to keep his teachings in my mind and in my heart, and I hope that I am helping people by writing these blogs and by offering help to those in obvious need. I do need to get my children into bible camp and expose them to his teachings, but that is another story for another day!