Food


So I caved, I gave  into peer pressure and joined pinterest. I shouldn’t have. I will never get off my computer now. Except of course to do the things that I find on Pinterest. So far I have made a couple games and pre-school activities for the kids (future blog posts to come). And then I came across these energy bite cookies. I started drooling immediately. So I did a quick cupboard inventory, and adjusted it slightly to accommodate. Let me tell you, they. are. amazing. They are quicker than no-bakes (like 5 min tops) healthier than no-bakes (no sugar or butter) and less clean up (no pots and pans!).

Ok so without further ado: My new fave cookie.

  • 1 cup uncooked oatmeal
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/2 cup craisins
  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Mix all together, and chill mold into balls (or cookies).  I really want to get some flax seed for extra nutritional value.

I probably didn't need 3, but they were sooooo yummy!

ENJOY!

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*insert obligatory apology for lack of postage here* (I have 3 kids, two and a half and under, I am chronically dis-organized with my time)

OK so you know how January is all about resolutions and February is all about forgetting about them? Well thats why Jason and I didn’t set a resolution, just goals/lifestyle change. We both felt like we needed to focus on getting healthy, and a (wonderful) consequence (is there really such a thing as a good consequence?) is losing weight. Our focus is more on getting healthy because that keeps us motivated when we don’t see much of a scale budge. So here is our change.

We are definitely more “strict” during the week and pretty much not at all on the weekends. We are humans, we really enjoy eating and we enjoy eating unhealthy foods. So if we don’t allow ourselves “looseness” we are setting ourselves up for failure. This part of our change is from the “no S diet”

We also read through the book eat right 4 your type. The theory is that different blood types respond to foods differently. Jason is type O (carnivor – He was happy to hear he should eat steaks) I am type A (a vegetarian). Yeah, that’s what I thought too. Obviously to save my cooking sanity and our budget we adapted the theory. But here are the biggest changes:

We eat a TON of more veggies (Frozen is cheaper than fresh and WAY better than canned. Walmart has great stir fry mixes for a good price, we easy go through a bag or more per meal)

We don’t eat white flour. Well, our kids will eat “normal” bread but our grains are now consist of Spelt, Brown rice, Quinoa and Ezekial Bread. These grains are low gluten or gluten free, lower in carbs, the carbs are complex and they are high in protein.

I have stopped eating meat while at home and am getting used to Tofu. I am really loving things like Hummus and lentils for protein. For snacks we have ditched the chips and cookies, and replaced with dried fruit (cranberries are especially good) and mixed nuts.

Emphasis more on making the calories count (as in being good for our bodies) than counting our calories (did you know you can lose weight by eating 1500 calories of twinkies only a day). Though we do that some too.

So what kind of progress are we seeing?

We have both lost a few pounds (Jason around 14 and myself about 8 ) and for I one feel a TON better. I feel like I have more energy, and my body just works better eating this way. Yeah we still go out for wings occasionally (human remember) but we don’t eat as many and we balance out our other meals better. So, who knows what we will look like in a year or two, but thats why this is a life change and our focus is on getting healthy, not just getting skinny. Though we sure wouldn’t complain about that!

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I have to say I am rather impressed with how far we can make our grocery budget stretch. Many people will tell you there secret to stretching groceries is “couponing”. I have to say, I am not one of them. Coupons work really well for some people just not me. Maybe it is because no one has ever really showed me how. But every time I try to try it, the only coupons I can find would require me to purchase something I wouldn’t really purchase anyway. So I would end up spending $1.00 (for extra product) in order to save .20 on that same product. For me (so far) it just hasn’t been worth it. But if someone could show me the trick to coming home with getting paid for buying toothpaste, I would probably reconsider.

Since I don’t coupon, my “secret” is simple:

Buy Bulk.

Generally speaking, the larger the quantity something is sold in the cheaper per unit it costs. Last week I once again, struck gold. Our local bulk foods market ran a sweet special. Boneless, skinless chicken breast for $1.59/lb if you bought 40lb boxes. So I of course did! In fact I bought 2! I split one of the boxes with mom, so I ended up with 60 lb of chicken breast. Unfrozen, just waiting for me to do wonderful things to it.

Now I will tell you, it was a lot of work up front. But it will save me TONS more time and money in my grocery budget for the next several months. Here is what I did:

My set up

Step one was trimming the chicken. I cut off all the fat, then measured it using a kitchen scale. I cut each breast into 3.5-4 oz (the recommended serving size) pieces. If a piece was smaller than that I set it to the side to be used for stir fry.

Pre- packaged individual meal servings.

After it was all sectioned I put 3 pieces into one quart freezer bag. If it was the “scraps”  it got cut up into stir fry pieces and 10 oz went into one quart bag.

Yumminess!

Once it was bagged I added the marinades to each quart bag. This will help out already knowing what to do with it in the future. This time I used, Raspberry Chipotle BBQ, Italian and home made Teriyaki. I also left  some just plain so as to allow for creativity in the future.

Who says pre-cooked meals can't be yummy?

Some Chicken I didn’t marinade, I cooked it on my (mom’s much larger) George Forman grill. Then bagged 3 of those. This way if I need something SUPER quick it is ready, or to grab for a quick lunch. Better than deli meat in my opinion =)

Meals for the winter/spring.

Meals for the winter/spring.

Once each quart bag was marinaded (or not) I put quart bags into larger freezer bags, and labeled. I fit about 7 quart size into 1 gallon size. The reason is two-fold. First extra protection against freezer burn, and second. This made for a more organized freezer.

All in all, I ended up with 84 meals worth. Which breaks down to $1.07 a meal for meat total, or .37 per person per meal. And I now have  “convenience” food without the convenience food price!

But just to be clear, any dish I take anywhere this winter, will involve chicken 🙂

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