As you know, I’m on a mission to eat better, lose weight, and feel great! Part of this mission is to try new foods I have never tried before, or to try things I don’t like in new ways so I hopefully like them better.
1. New Foods
Couscous is talked about in many of the shows I watch on Food Network. The reason being because it is relatively nutritious and quick and easy to prepare. I bought a quick cooking version at Kroger and thought I would give it a try. It says to boil the grains in water, but since I am one to flavor every level of the dish (thanks, Giada!), I used chicken broth instead. All you do is bring your liquid to a boil, toss in your couscous, stir, cover it, and let it sit off the heat for 5 minutes. That’s it! The flavor of the couscous reminded me of cornbread. I thought it was good plain, but wikipedia says it is traditionally served under a meat or vegetable stew. I can see that. It would probably work well with chili also, since I typically think of chili with cornbread. Maybe that is something to try when it gets cooler out…well, even cooler than it is now!
I wanted to try quinoa because it is another grain often used on the healthy cooking shows. My bestie says it is pretty good, though there isn’t much she doesn’t like or hasn’t tried! I feel like every time I find something new I want to try she has already tried it several different ways! Maybe I have to go to Europe to find stuff she hasn’t tried. Ha ha. Anyhow, so I went to Trader Joe’s to look for quinoa because I couldn’t find it at Kroger and I dont’ have a Whole Foods near me. I found regular quinoa, but I also found a blend of grains called Trader Joe’s Harvest Grains. I made it later that night, but I think I cooked it wrong because it ended up being kind of hard in the middle. You know how rice gets when you either don’t put enough water in it or you don’t cook it long enough? It gets done on the outside but the inside is still kind of crunchy. That’s what it tasted like. I served it to both Jeff and myself and he couldn’t eat it. He told me it tasted like “bird food” which, after he said that, I had to agree. I’m going to try it again, but I can plan on only making enough for one!!!
Bulgar is something else I want to try, as well as wheatberry, but I am having a hard time locating both. I have yet to go to Health Foods Unlimited, though, so I’m not completely out of options yet. I know Whole Foods has them, but the closest one to me is in Cincinnati and I’m not making a special trip for grains! I’m going down there this Saturday, so maybe C and I can venture into one. She can point out all the good stuff she’s found there! 🙂
2. Old Food, New Ways
I am not a huge fan of fish. I never have been. I told myself a while back, though, that I was going to limit my intake of red meat. I love love love steak, but since red meat isn’t as good for you as chicken, fish, and pork I decided to try eating less steak and more of the trio. I love chicken and shrimp, like pork, and am getting better at eating fish. I’m also loving me some sushi lately(well, California Rolls and the shrimp sushi Carolyn got at the lake but you know). I decided to make fish the other day. I salt and peppered it and tossed it in the toaster oven to broil. Then I made a sauce out of chicken broth, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, orange juice, and I think a little sweet-n-low. Mmm mmm mmm was it tasty. I let the sauce reduce and get all syrup-y and then poured it over the fish, added some brown rice, and I had a great meal! Yesterday I decided to try some Andy’s Fish Breading. C and I used to get this when we lived together in college. You just wet the fish, pat dry, and then coat with the breading mix. I did this with chicken as well for Jeff and threw them in a 400 degree oven. I put the chicken in first for 10 minutes and then added the fish to the pan for another 10 minutes. I was scared Jeff wouldn’t like it, but he said it was some of the moistest chicken he’s had in a while. I made a little ranch/hot sauce spread for him and it was like he was having healthy Buffalo Chicken! I will definitely be using the breading again.
I have decided to try my vegetables over and over until I find a way to eat them that I like. For example, I HATE broccoli. Ick. I have found most people either love it or hate it. Well…I hate it. I think it’s all those Chicken Broccoli casseroles from years past, Mom! I am going to buy a stalk of broccoli and try it in several different ways until I find one I like. I’m going to steam it using chicken broth instead of water, put parmesan cheese over it, and also try baking it in the oven. We’ll see what works. I read about some lady slicing an eggplant really fine, adding salt and pepper, and baking them in the oven until they formed chips. I’m going to try that too. Yum!
Finally, this is not a new thing, just something I found yesterday. My favorite peanut butter is Skippy Natural. My Kroger only carries the creamy version so when I was at Wal-mart yesterday and saw Skippy Natural Extra Crunchy kind I had to have it! I’m sure it’s been out for a long time, but I had never seen it. I got some Thomas Whole Grains Whole Wheat english muffins and had myself a good breakfast this morning! Yum yum yum.
**Why is it I can’t write just a short little blog? All my blogs are like books! Hope y’all like to read! That also reminds me…I hate when people spell y’all ya’ll. It’s not ya all, it’s you all. Y(ou)’all! Come on poeple! Ok. Rant over.