Sunday, March 28, 2010

Confessions of a Foodie

I love food. I'm sure everyone can say this to some extent, but I feel like I may love food more than the average person. I am a self-diagnosed foodie. I have moments where I am so excited about what I am eating that I feel a sense of disappointment when I am finished. I love the entire process of a meal from fixing it, to cooking it, to eating it. Other than cleaning up afterward, I could spend my life cooking and eating.

I want every new and not so new kitchen gadget I see. I could probably spend a small fortune in Bed Bath and Beyond. I watch The Food Network regularly and keep a running list in my head of every gadget my kitchen is missing. I even ask for these things for Christmas and my Birthday. I also actually use them. I have not one gadget in my kitchen that goes unused.

In addition to kitchen gadgets, I could also spend hours, not to mention millions, at a gourmet grocery store. These stores are my version of heaven. Olive bars, cheese displays, fresh baked breads, and fresh produce make me giddy. I like to hit every display, read labels, browse the different choices and make my selections. I'm not kidding when I say I could spend HOURS in a grocery store.

Someday, I would like to take a vacation to sample the foods of different places. First on my list would be Italy. I am especially fond of Italian cuisine and would love learning more about it. I'm not sure why, but food wise, I feel more in tune and closer to my Italian roots. I just love Italian cuisine and probably make more Italian inspired meals in my kitchen than anything. I recently have had some interest in learning to speak a little bit of Italian...I think it's fun knowing what the name of certain food means, and the origins of what these words are.

On top of all of these things, it's important to me that my food is healthy. I like to "clean up" ordinary recipes using fresher and more nutritious choices. This is like a game to me. I substitute things and leave certain things out of recipes and when I have success I feel triumphant. I love when Justin says something is "really good, babe" despite being the healthier version of one of his favorites. I love developing new, healthy recipes and pairing different flavors and textures. It's my form of creative expression.

I could go on for hours about my love of food and cooking it. I love that as I have grown older my interests in things have become more defined. I'm looking forward to exploring this interest further. It brings me a certain satisfaction to be able to do so. Because my life is entering the phase in which I am content with all that I have and where it is leading, I have more time to learn about what interests me and nourish those interests (no food pun intended!).

Buon Appetito!!!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I Have a Bone to Pick.

I am so irritated to read a label of one of my old favorite foods and find that it has something "less than healthy" in it. I have just had to shelve for good my beloved 100% Whole Grain Wheat Thins. These seemingly healthy crackers have High Fructose Corn Syrup in them. I know we've all seen the commercials for High Fructose Corn Syrup that say "it's okay in moderation." I disagree and am irritated that this disgusting, cheap, imitation for flavoring is in just about EVERYTHING we eat.

When I say everything, I mean it's in EVERYTHING! Yogurt, Crackers, Fruit Juice, Condiments and this doesn't even scratch the surface.

I'm not saying I know much about the scientific makeup of HFCS, but I do know one thing: Some scientist has to change sugar from it's natural state and alter it to be HFCS so that it has a longer shelf life and food companies can buy it for cheap to make as much money as possible, all the while Americans are getting more overweight and more unhealthy. So what that last run-on sentence tells us is that it's totally unnatural and not good for us.

I wish for just once that a food that is marketed as healthy, such as Wheat Thins, could be just that. It's less popular sister Triscuit has 4 ingredients, all that I can pronounce and know what they are. Triscuit is now going to be my cracker of choice though it doesn't taste as good or crunch as nicely, and I tend to get Triscuit crumbs all over my shirt when I eat them. But for someone like me, who really wants to put only the best things in her body, it's worth the trade off.

I'm not sure what I can do about these deceitful foods that have fooled and continue to fool most Americans into thinking they are making a sound choice. I know ranting on a blog that is read by my parents and maybe a few other people isn't going to fix this. Do I write my congressman? Do I protest the food companies? It seems that all I can do is read labels and be the annoying girl that tells everyone that they shouldn't eat this or that because of some unhealthy acronym of a preservative is in them.

I've explored many ways to make sure that I'm eating healthy and encourage others to read labels on your everyday foods. Chances are if you can't pronounce it, it's probably not something you should be putting in your body. In some of my future posts I may brag about what I do to get around some of the artificial yuckiness in foods and I hope you find some value in something, and live healthier because of it, and maybe even spread the word. In the meantime, I'm going to go and enjoy some grapes and a few Triscuits and most likely be vacuuming the crumbs out of my couch later.

Monday, March 22, 2010

To Walk or Not to Walk?

I conquered a half marathon yesterday. It felt great crossing the finish line with my family and friends cheering me on. It was a thrill finishing strong after 10 weeks of training and some shin problems that I was afraid would ruin my chances of crossing that threshold. I could have cared less about my time, just getting across that glorious finish line was what I was striving for. I didn't walk once during the race.

I must have been practicing the not walking for the days following the race because I am having some difficulties today. I have limped around all day long trying to get my everyday tasks at work and home taken care of. The longer I would sit at my desk at work the worse it would hurt when I would attempt to walk again. Though this has ailed me all day....I am not complaining. I earned every ache and pain I am experiencing from a really proud moment that I wouldn't trade for anything.

My next goal is to run a full marathon. I'm sure that I'll have to take a day or two off of work after 26.2 miles of pavement pounding. Walking will most likely be rough though I'm sure it will be just as worth it.

I'll walk of these days!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Ready and rearing to go!

I have never blogged before in my life. Nor do I know how to do half of the things I probably should in starting this. I have spent the last few weeks reading blogs of family, friends, and strangers and felt the urge to dabble a little myself. I have made the New Years resolution to step out of my comfort zone more often and blogging is most definitely out of my comfort zone.

So here I go, sharing little pieces of my life with family, friends, and strangers alike. Some pieces are ordinary and some are not, but I'm hoping all will have something useful to at least one reader. If not one reader is interested, that's okay, I can still check blogging off of my bucket list and go on with my uninteresting existence in peace (though I'm pretty sure there is at least ONE person!!).

Feel free to comment all you want and try to keep up, the inner workings of my brain can be hard to follow at times or maybe that's just the inner workings of my brain making me think that it's more complicated than I think. Enjoy.