Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Healthy AND Delicious

This weekend I was re-reading another old favorite from my simple living library--Janet Luhrs's "The Simple Living Guide" I was re-inspired by her chapter on nutrition. Fall is a time when I feel my best--I don't know about any of you but there are certain seasons when I feel great, inside and out, and others (like late spring) when I feel icky and out of balance.

Anyway, in reading the chapter on nutrition, the author talks about the importance of whole, unadulterated foods and trying to eat foods as close as possible to the way they are found in nature. By doing this, we can feel our best, build our immune systems, and generally be our healthiest.

The author bases a lot of her health nutrition on that of the Seventh Day Adventist Church (though she is not an Adventist herself). One of the things that Adventists traditionally believe, is that the body needs good, nourishing foods and then time to digest them properly. Luhrs talks about their belief that one should eat their largest meal at breakfast, the second largest at lunch, and a very small, or no, supper. Meals should be spaced about 5 hours apart and one should eat a LOT at mealtimes, as snacking is not looked upon favorably.

I'm not one for a lot of "rules" around food--having grown up in a house where we were always "all or nothing" eating (either all trying to be super healthy or all scarfing ice cream sundaes). I try to be very moderate about my eating habits. However, I did take the authors suggestion of making a pot of healthy, whole grains and having that with fruit for breakfast. I found a recipe for Crockpot Cobbler and scoured my kitchen cabinets Saturday night, putting together the ingredients in my trusty crockpot. This is a great way to use up some of your fall apples AND any stale granola you might have lurking in your cupboards. Plus, it's super easy and fast to make.

It was delicious--warm and creamy, low in fat and high in fiber. And it was a real treat to smell breakfast already cooking when I got up on Sunday morning. I felt like I was at a B&B!

This morning I made up a large pot of kidney beans, from dry beans I purchased at our local natural food store this weekend. Dry beans are a HUGE savings and really aren't that time consuming to make--they just require a little pre-planning to soak before cooking. I'm going to make chili and Mustard Baked Beans with them, and will use any leftovers in my salads. I think I'll try to find a whole grain cornbread recipe to go with both dishes.

Here's to cooking healthy AND delicious foods!


Peggy Frezon said...

I want to try to that Crockpot Cobbler recipe. But I'm trying to watch my fat intake. I've been trying to stay away from butter. Can I substitute? Also, what brand of granola do you use? I heard that some are high in fat. Are some healthier than others? Thanks from Peggy, a newbie to healthy eating.

ChicChick said...

Hey Peggy, I believe the whole recipe (makes 4 servings) is just 2 Tbl of butter--but I'm sure you could substitute olive oil or even a low-fat margarine if that's what you normally use. You might also just throw in a little applesauce and leave out the oil all together.

As far as the granola--I have to admit, I don't look much at fat content when I shop anymore (though I used to, fastidiously) because I think that if one eats a full range of foods, especially lots of fruits and veggies, we're able to get a healthy balance. That being said, there are definitely fattening granolas. I used some leftovers that I had from the bulk bin at the health store. Most (all?) of the bulk bin items should have the nutrition info on the bin. If not, I would just read the backs of the bags.

One thing to look for with "generic" granolas such as those found in the cereal isles are all the additives and fake ingredients like high fructose corn syrup and color/flavor additives. I'd rather have all natural with a little fat than that stuff...but that's just me!

Let me know if you try the recipe and what you think of it! :)