Thursday, December 13, 2012

Freggies: a whole food challenge (and a recipe!)

One of the challenges of eating around all of my "no" foods is how much it forces me to cook from scratch.  I don't get to be lazy and just order out pizza because even if it is wheat-free, it is most likely not corn-free.  Prepackaged approved foods are few and far between, and often hellishly expensive.  The ones that aren't are filled with all sorts of nasties like silicon dioxide (glass!!) and preservatives.  I'm pretty sure that something that has enough chemicals to last fifty years on a store shelf shouldn't get put into my belly.

A friend of mine recently challenged us to do 100 days of real food with her starting January 1.  I'm looking forward to it because I feel like I should cut out more of the processed stuff I do eat out of my diet.  Like, I don't really need that cane sugar soda...or the corn- and GF chips...or the ice cream that hurts my stomach anyway....

One of the suggestions that Lisa, the blogger from 100 Days, recommends is starting off with "mini challenges."  She has posted 14 weeks (98 days) of ideas to make your eating habits healthier.  I decided to do one challenge a week until the new year, and this week's was incorporating at least 2 fruits and/or vegetables into each meal you eat.  So far I have been doing pretty well, especially considering that I usually get maybe 2 servings a day.  I know, bad...especially since I have kids and should be a better role model.  I'm hoping that this challenge will help me to eat more "freggies" than my sad little produce drawer used to boast.

I started on Tuesday and did pretty well the first day, but yesterday was kind of awful.  I let myself get into one of those "I just don't care" moods.  I even cheated and stole a French fry off of my sweet overworked DH's plate (they are coated in corn starch, one of my non-Liz-friendly foods.)

I did much better today--I started out with a bowl of cereal and an apple, and then finished it off with a cup of "peach milkshake" (non-dairy milk with frozen peaches grown by a family friend.)  Lunch was lamb stew with a TON of veggies.  I am not sure what dinner will be yet (it might be leftovers, YUM!)

I don't make up recipes very often (it's something I'm trying to get into, what with the food blog and all!) but I thought the stew came out pretty awesome.  It was inspired by the soup I ate the other day at our local co-op grocery store.  I'm still salivating over that stew.

Get your ingredients together.  Enjoy the colors!!

Saute the onions and garlic in EVOO until the onions are just starting to become translucent.  Add your meat.

Add the remaining veggies and sautee for 5 minutes.  Add broth, beans, spices, and starch, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 15 minutes.

Try not to eat it all in one sitting.  DH is going away with a friend for the weekend, I'm pretty sure I'm going to live off this stuff.  This, and the GF farmhouse bread I bought the other day.  Oh yeahhhh.

Lamb Stew
  • 1 tsp EVOO
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2/3 lb. lamb or other red meat, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 small or 1 large carrot(s), sliced into medallions
  • 1 zucchini, peeled and sliced into medallions
  • 1 qt vegetable broth
  • 1 can (or 1 1/2 cups dried, prepped) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 tsp tarragon
  • 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 - 1 tsp black pepper (I like my soups spicy)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp potato or other starch
1) In a medium-size pot, saute onion and garlic in EVOO until the onion is almost translucent.  Add lamb (or other red meat) and brown.
2) Add remaining veggies.  Cook to your desired tenderness.  I prefer my carrots to still have crunch to them, so this was about 3 minutes.
3) Add broth, beans, spices, and starch.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.

Makes six 1-1/2 cup servings.