Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Trying New Foods - Back to Basics

I can't say enough how much I have been branching out in the food department lately. It's really been helping me stay healthy without being bored. I thought I would share some of my new-found yummies lately. Grab a cup and stay awhile, I have a lot of catching up to do!

Colorful and sweet
SO not a tomato!
A plan to make my neighbor persimmon cookies (something new I was trying) went awry when I was told by my mother-in-law that I had bought the wrong kind of persimmons. What to do with these beauties? Well, I ate them! Like an apple! Sweet, mild flavor. I had never tried to do that before because they look like tomatoes. And I am not one to grab a tomato and eat it like an apple. I am now a fan.

What's this? Tastes like chicken?
Have you heard of seitan? I had first heard of it from a Facebook friend who started a creative cooking group of mostly vegan members. I'm not vegan, but I do lean toward vegetarian meals most days, and I enjoy the recipes and food discussions. Seitan is also knowns as "wheat meat". Doesn't sound that appetizing, does it? Well it doesn't look so appetizing either. But, I wanted to give it a go. It is essentially high-protein gluten. When its cooked, it actually does have a similar texture and look to meat. I cooked some with taco seasoning, and ended up with some very yummy seitan soft tacos that were garnished with salsa, kale salad, and a tiny bit of cheese.
Very interesting! Tastes even better.
On the side I had these awesome new chips I bought at Whole Foods. They are quinoa chips with chia seeds! I was a little apprehensive about the taste before I tried them because of how they look. Well, you can't judge a book by it's cover! Although they are dark, these chips blow blue corn chips away. I will surely spend a small fortune buying these from Whole Wallet again!
Even my hubby liked the chips. Not present for the tacos.
Brussel sprouts make most people wrinkle up their nose. I think they are pretty tasty. Well guess what, I had never made those either. Nor had I ever made cranberry chutney either, which made the brussel sprouts taste...well, even better than brussel sprouts! 
Easy to make these healthy beauties

Chutney of Love
A bit much but I couldn't help it. You would do the same!

Love portobello mushrooms? I do as well, but don't eat them very often, and have never made them. Last night, after a terribly unfortunate, high fat/calorie Panera Bread salad for lunch, I couldn't decide what to have for dinner. I knew NOT eating was not the answer, but wanted to have as low impact of a meal as possible. So, I happened to have some portobellos in the fridge. I heated up less than a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan, sliced up a large garlic clove to flavor the oil, chopped up half a small onion, sliced up 2 large mushrooms and sauteed them until the onions were soft and the mushrooms were blackened. I seasoned them with black pepper and sea salt, and shook a little grated parmesan cheese over them before I ate them. Yum. Portobellos, for the win! By the way, the salad I had was the Mediterranean Salmon Salad. Sounded very healthy, but had 580 calories and 38 grams of fat! I didn't eat even half the dressing, so it possibly wasn't that bad. But I was very disappointed when I looked that up.
More filling than I expected and full of flavor as well
After reading this article about ditching recipes that @citymama tweeted, I have also decided to try to get back to basics in the kitchen. I realize how much easier it is as a working mom to eat good food if I try to keep it simple.

After yesterday's lunch debacle I am going back to my homemade salad for lunch today. I think my waistline would agree. Stay healthy and delicious my friends!

Has your quest for health and wellness driven you to try anything new lately?


  1. I've tried seitan a few times, but never made it at home. Those brussel sprouts with cranberry chutney are gorgeous! I love colorful food. Definitely agree, that as much as I love experimenting, it helps to keep things simple. :)

  2. Been eating persimmons lately. Love portobellos. Have been checking out the brussel sprouts too and trying to convince my girls to stop going "eww" LOL.

  3. Great's so easy to do same old same old. Persimmons are great. I introduced my kids to kiwi, and they had a field day. I love brussel sprouts- make them all the time roasted in the oven w/ olive oil salt and pepper...delich! I am going to try that chutney- sounds fabulous. Thanks for the new ideas!


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