Come On-A My House

I would feed you like a king or a queen. I love to cook. I love to try different recipes and I enjoy cooking for my loved ones. It’s not work. It’s not hard. It is a labor of love. I sometimes get frustrated at those who are dismissive of cooking. In this day and age of fast food and ready-made products, the focus on creating a healthy, warm, delicious meal is something of a lost art.

We want everything quickly. We eat too fast when we need to be sitting down at the table with our loved ones savoring their company and that food with which we are nourishing our body. Would we pour any old sludge into the gas tank of our car? No, we wouldn’t, at least I hope not. And yet when it comes to our bodies, we overlook the amazing system that it is and we “nourish” it with crap.

True, the price of food can be problematic for some in terms of eating healthy. I get that. It frustrates me to no end. But it also comes down to healthy choices even in this economy. A little preparation – time spent actually cooking real food and freezing it can save a lot of time and money in the long run. I’m not saying this is always the case for those who are really struggling. Again, I get that. I wish I could change things for the better. I truly do.

Since I got a pressure cooker and waffle-maker I’ve been making a ton of food for freezing. Food packed with nutrients and flavor such as Chicken Pot Pie (minus the crust), Chicken Chipotle, Roasted Cauliflower Soup, Asparagus Soup, Elk Chili, kohlrabi soup, stews, chicken biryani, and waffles (blueberry, pumpkin, banana, cinnamon-nutmeg-raisin). It has actually cut down on our grocery bill quite a bit. And I know exactly what is going into these foods. The soups have NO cream – they are blended using an immersion blender. I use a lot of carrots, celery, spinach, onions, brussels sprouts, cabbage, garlic and collard greens in the pressure cooker with the meat and sometimes a cup of brown rice thrown in.

I’m starting to clean up my diet even more by going gluten-free, soy-free, sugar-free, dairy-free and peanut butter free. I’m tired of the congestion after eating certain foods and feeling sluggish and unwell. Since I’ve started eliminating foods with these ingredients, I have been feeling a ton better. I’m learning to bake all over again using alternative ingredients – real, natural, and as unprocessed of ingredients as I can get. Here are just a couple pictures of the muffins I’ve been making. The first picture is the banana chocolate chip muffins. I used brown rice flour and agave nectar as replacements for regular flour and sugar. The thing with brown rice flour that I am finding and also just read is that the end result does not hold together that well. So, the taste is great but the muffin crumbles quite easily. I’m working on that and may switch to a different multi-purpose gluten free flour. The second picture is of blueberry muffins and blueberry waffles. These are NOT gluten-free. I made them for my husband and my mom. They contain wheat germ and I used whole wheat pastry flour for the muffins. The waffles are made with a multi-grain flour from Bob’s Red Mill.

It’s making me feel like a million bucks that I am learning more and more each day about removing certain things from our food and replacing them with healthier alternatives without sacrificing taste.

Bottom-line, I’m enjoying cooking and savoring (there goes that word again!) the bounty from the garden and I love seeing our freezer full of healthy foods to choose from.

Happy cooking!

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins - Gluten-Free

Blueberry Muffins and Blueberry Waffles

0 thoughts on “Come On-A My House

  1. It’s a constant battle in our house, but one we’re slowly starting to tackle. I go through bursts of cooking energy, and then fizzle out for a while. Whether it’s laziness or what, I’m not sure. You are definitely an inspiration, as you are living proof of how much better it is possible to feel!

  2. My sister and I made the first steps in the summer to really get to know the local farmers in our area and all of the different produce in season. We took great pride by going out to the farms (which are not far from where we are) and purchasing our food. We both felt really inspired and motivated by the food we were cooking and eating.

    It’s definitely more challenging now with our schedules but we still try to make a few batches of soup for the week or freezing. Small steps that feel good! 🙂

    I’m always inspired by your food posts, Tracy, and your love for cooking. You inspire me to continue on this quest.

    Your muffins look scrumptious.

  3. Agree wholeheartedly with this post despite feeling horribly guilty that I just can’t always summon the strength to be this forward thinking and healthy about my food choices. But DAMN those muffins and waffles look divine.

    (and Gluten is the enemy.)

  4. I WILL be coming to your house for sure! I’m like Brandee; I try to like cooking and experimenting with healthy products, but I fizzle out as well (and I’d much rather be baking with the ‘real stuff’ — cooking is a necessity for me, baking is a joy). Even so, I ‘get it’ and know I need to clean my system out and know I am guilty of the eating practices you scold above.

    But today, for 8 hours now, I’ve been completely clean, no sugar, no preservatives, etc. All healthy! I just have to commit to it the same way you have because I, too, feel so much better. And FoodSavers are great investment, too – for freezing those meals and making them last in the freezer for a year or longer. You go, girl. Thanks for sharing (those muffins look fab).

  5. AWESOME. I know several people who admit they have no interest in cooking, but I always feel like they’re missing out. Your method for preparing a bunch of items in advance makes a huge difference. And one you didn’t mention–the days you shop in your own freezer? Usually the cleanup is so much lighter those days. I happily trash my kitchen on pre-cooking days and then enjoy a ten-minute cleanup on a weeknight. I love it.

    Also, your baked goods look in-freakin’-credible. When you pin down a good gf flour, do let me know. I can always tell the difference when I quit gluten, but so far I’ve always gone back to it.

    I say again: AWESOME.

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