Yes, I know, I have not written in over a month. No, I have not forgotten, but some things have just had to take a backseat lately.
I've totally changed my family's diet, and believe it or not, that really is occupying a lot of my time. I really always thought that we ate a pretty healthy menu. I cooked nearly all of what we made, but took lots of liberties. For example, my idea of homemade spaghetti involved using a jar of pre-made sauce, though I would never go so far as to make Hamburger you know what. But, after doing some reading, started to get really disgusted with things we buy at the store, and how misleading labels really are. Did you know the ingredient "natural flavors" is far from natural? They alter it in labs, singling out the "best" part of the flavor gene, then use that. Sure, that seems good, except then our tongues are trained to only want the "perfect" flavor, and it becomes addicting.
So, we have become a "real food family". If it isn't something that comes naturally, we don't eat it. (When I say we I really mean the kids and I, and Mike sometimes). That means a lot more time in the kitchen. I'm not perfect, and sometimes something slips in, but I am really trying! A friend recently pointed out in her blog how we often hear about how the under-privileged are most often overweight, because they cannot afford "health foods", but that in all honesty, it is hard for anyone, regardless of income, to find healthy, real food in a big chain store.
Boy was she right.
I have two groceries stores in my town. One being Walchainstore, which I hate, and the other is a locally owned store. Now, the locally owned store is trying to carry more real foods, but with only about a quarter of an aisle, there isn't much to choose from. The other has more, yes, but certainly not an amazing selection. I have also noticed that the healthier, real, and organic foods are almost always way up on the very top shelf. Or, on the very bottom. With limited selections, I'm just having to make more on my own. More of my own bread, sauces, you name it.
Tonight, I made stuffed manicotti. Oh my lands was it yummy! I used whole wheat manicotti (which I didn't make myself, because it was organic and had only "real food" ingredients. For the stuffing, I sauteed red, yellow and orange bell peppers with garlic, Real Salt, and pepper. I wilted a little baby spinach with some olive oil, then browned a quarter pound of hamburger (for the all beef Barb Wire Man) with about a quarter cup of rolled oats. I mixed it all together with some freshly grated Parmesan, and spaghetti sauce. I didn't make my sauce this time (hey, I was making soap and canning chicken broth at the same time I was cooking supper!), but did find a really, really good organic spaghetti sauce. This has Ragu and Prego beat under the table, and the only ingredients are tomatoes, onions, sugar, sweet basil, sea salt, EVOO, Garlic, black pepper, fennel and oregano. I topped it with some more of the sauce and sprinkled it with mozzarella and Parmesan. Oh, was it good!
In the last two days, I have also cooked two roasts, cooked and de-boned a whole chicken, canned 8 jars of jelly, canned 8 jars of homemade chicken stock, and made soap. So, I have been a little busy!
Hopefully will be checking in more often! Have a blessed day!
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