Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Warm-Up: 30 Days on the Plate

Luckily, I've already been working on cutting out processed foods and GMOs from my diet.  Hopefully, this means that my cravings during the month of September won't be too bad, or I'll know how to satisfy them without junk.  I wanted to share some things that I'm doing in preparation for the month.

Look what my Ingles got! Bulk items, none GMO.
Yes, friends, I did check them all like a crazy lady, but now I know.

One week's worth.
1. Making my own "instant" breakfast.  It sounds incredibly simple, but I don't leave myself a lot of cushion time in the morning to even pull out all the ingredients, make my breakfast, and clean it all up.  So, I'm making Farina packets- to the best of my research, it's not made with GMOs, but I could be wrong.  The cocoa is processed, but it's a minimal amount that I consider worth it.  I make it up, portion it out into ziploc baggies, and then pour the baggie into a bowl in the morning, add water, and microwave- just like instant oatmeal, only healthier and tastier.

Farina for Breakfast: 
*per serving:
3 tbsp Farina (choc)
3/4 c. water
dash salt
up to 1 tsp pure cane sugar (tastes sweeter and better than regular sugar, and you probably won't need as much)

Microwave 2 minutes and voila!

2. Apple Pie Oats 
1 c. steel cut oats (check your producer for GMOs)
1 c. unsweetened almond milk (optional)
3 c. water (If not using almond milk, add a 4th cup of water)
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp chia seeds (optional)
1 apple, chopped
1/4 c. raisins
sugar/ brown sugar to taste

Put into crockpot, heat on low or warm overnight.

This is good, y'all!  I find that about 1/2 cup serving of steel cut oats is a big breakfast for me, but lots of people eat a bigger breakfast than I do.  I made a double recipe, which is perfect for feeding a family.  The rumor is that you can microwave your leftovers.  It's not quite as good and you don't get the tease of the amazing smell, but it does work.

Going into the crockpot
3. Planning what I pack for lunch ahead of time and packing my lunch the night before.  Otherwise, it tends to be junky.  This salad is mixed greens and baby spinach, olives, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, carrot (hiding under pepper), and some beef.  Oh, and ranch dressing on the side!

4. Making some easy to eat leftover meals.  Tonight's dish:

Pasta Free Spaghetti

1 spaghetti squash

Preheat oven to 350.
Half squash, remove seeds
On a baking sheet, lay parchment paper and place squash on the paper.
Sorry for the terrible picture quality.
Cook for 45 minutes or until done.  Use fork to pull out "spaghetti" strands.  Butter is optional.
* To make this meal even more awesome, add a slice of homemade garlic bread.

on left, no butter (tomato sauce to be added)
on right, butter
Homemade Tomato Sauce

5-7 tomatoes, seeded
1 onion, chopped
1/4 c. fresh basil
1 red roasting pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced (or food processored)
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

You can eat this raw, but I prefer to heat on low for just a few minutes to remove some of the "raw" taste.  This particular sauce is more of a faded red because the tomatoes I used are from my CSA, which had some tomatoes that weren't red this week.

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