Tuesday, February 4, 2014

You are what you eat!

Many of us are trying to eat more healthy these days and that isn't always the easiest. A couple of reasons - we don't know how, we think we don't know how and we have no idea what we are doing!!!!   Plus you think you are alone and when you talk to your friends - they will think you have gone over to the OTHER side.

So.............    six of us got together last week and had a FOOD session. We had so much fun and I wanted to share it with you.

We get together to sew once a month and got on the topic of food.  We mentioned that we had tools or wanted certain tools and were they worth it. We collected a list of stuff we wanted to try and this is the result.
Tidied up the kitchen and we had a great work surface to do our demos

M brought all the stuff she needed for her demo. Looks pretty darn healthy!!!!!

Someone wanted to learn how to make bread from scratch. We invited Mary to come along as she is a bread maker extraordinaire.

The bread is waiting to rise!!!!!!!!!!!!
And much later we had wonderful little loaves of bread. YES - she bakes them in tin cans. God forbid if you throw those tins away!!!!!!!!!!!

Bonnie Stern got mentioned several times and someone brought one of her cook books. Looks like the old, the tried and true is still good!!!!!!!!!!!!

Elaine S made hummus in her food processor.  It is great to make your own because you can add all kinds of stuff to it. she added olives and sun dried tomatoes.   That was VERY yummy. I don't have a food processor and I don't think I want one simply because of the clean up.   I know - I am LAZY in the kitchen. I need things to be easy and relatively quick 

Mary also served us COLD oatmeal that had been soaked over night in apple juice (I think). Then topped with a bit of yogurt and some blackberries - this was a FAST FAST FAST breakfast for anyone  and very healthy!!!!!

A number of people have asked about a juicer. Should they get one. Well M did us a demo on the juicer.

Here she is squeezing some lemon into her GREEN concoction. While I appreciate the juicer, I think it is wasteful (more on that in a bit) and there are LOTS of parts to clean up. I HATE the clean up. Takes a LOT of produce to make juice and best to make a weeks' worth at one time. Put it in the fridge and clean up once a week. 

Then M demoed the NUTRI-BULLET. Like the magic-bullet, but bigger with a stronger motor.  I like this because you are getting ALL the pulp included in the smoothie. No waste - quick clean-up - the cup which can go in the dishwasher and the blades which you rinse right away. My money is on the Nutri-Bullet.  Great - quick and easy to make a smoothie in the morning on your way out the door. 

Joyce was asked to make KALE chips. As you know - EVERYONE is on the band wagon with KALE these days. Most of us had tried making kale chips at one point, but failed dismally in getting them just right. Joyce is obviously a pro because these were good and I could have eaten the entire batch by myself.

One of the secrets - DRY KALE.   Wash it, cut it up and DRY IT THOROUGHLY.   You could mix it in a bowl with the olive oil and touch of salt, but we put it right on the cookie tray and mixed it there.    Secret number two - SLOW and LOW in the oven. 

The chips - YUM YUM YUM. Instead of the salt - you could add some spices?????

Then Joyce demonstrated a machine she got recently called Yo-Nanas. You know those bananas that start to brown. Well pop them in the freezer and when you want some dessert - get out your Yo-nana maker.
You cut the mostly frozen banana in half and put half in the machine, then some blueberries or other frozen berries, then the rest of the banana and VOILA...................

It is like a frozen yogurt/sherbet - a very yummy dessert. Fast and the clean-up of the machine is not bad. I wonder what would happen if you used the immersion blender for this????

Sharon made this yummy soup. I think it was tomato (god - that is sad that I can't even remember that!!!)

She used the immersion blender to mix it up.   The more I see - I am liking that immersion blender. I bought one the other day and want to do more with it. FAST and EASY to clean up - my style of cooking.

Elaine K made some gluten free dessert items. She made these at home - chocolate chip cookies and brownies. Funny how I remember the names of the sweets!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was a very interesting day and we got to sample all kinds of goodies. I really really enjoyed the process and we are going to do it again. This time - the theme is BREAKFAST foods. Things that you can eat on the run or sit down, but have to be healthy breakfast items and there is NO COLD CEREAL (from a box) on our menu.

I'll let you know all about that when it happens.

Now back to that pulp from the juicer.  Hmmm - I wonder if it would make soup?????  Of course - I did NOT read anything about the pulp. Just thought I could make it up. Well.....................

After throwing two boxes of veggie broth into the mix

The pulp was STILL DISGUSTING!!!!!!!!!!!!    Looked and smelled DISGUSTING

I tried the immersion blender, but NO - NOTHING was going to change that mess!!!!!

Then I decided to read the book on the juicer to see what others do with the pulp. Well some people use it in meat loaf (about a cup as filler), other make think crackers. Hey - I could do that.

My crackers
 Of course - by this time - there is too much liquid in it and nothing happened. The entire lot ended up in the compost!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lessons learned on this day:

Gluten free products taste good and the texture is great. But since I do not have to eat them, I won't, but I would if I had to.
A food processor is too much work in the clean up area (at least at this time)
A juicer is way too much work in the clean up area and way too much waste
A Nutri-Bullet seems like a cool tool and I want to experiment more
I LOVE my immersion blender and will play with that and all the attachments more
I LIKE cold OATMEAL for breakfast and will make that again
How to make DELICIOUS kale chips
My friends all want to be health conscious like me and are willing to share!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh my - this has opened up a whole new thing   and I may just get good use out of that huge kitchen of mine after all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Get your friends together and try some experiments. It is loads of fun and I really really really enjoyed the day. Thanks everyone!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And Mary - that doubting Mary - did NOT think I would have a rolling pin!   Which I do and a few other things that she may not think I have. I wasn't always a doltz in the kitchen!!!!!    Just lazy when no one will eat what I make. Why bother!!!!!!!!!!!!

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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