I grew up mostly poor. As a child there was a lot that I didn’t get to have or get to do. But, even still, my mother was very good at creating traditions. For instance, when we lived in the Bay Area she made a tradition of our having breakfast once a month in Palo Alto at The Good Earth. I made my own tradition by ordering exactly the same thing every time: Scrambled Eggs with Cream Cheese and a Berry Shake.
Quinoa is one of those foods that makes last-minute, thrown-together, dinners feel like culinary haute couture. It’s ready in less than 3o minutes and, like rice and pasta, has lots of options.
Last night was a night that called for something quick and easy. Work was exhausting and traffic was excruciating (2 hours on the 405…too bad I’m not drinking anymore). Looking around I gathered a leek that had definitely seen better days, some sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil and a cup of rainbow quinoa. Since the sun-dried tomatoes also came with great herbs I was even more ahead of the game.
I have been doing a LOT of cooking lately. Most of it is inspired experimentation in an effort to satisfy both my new dietary “rules” and my cravings. I’m on such a learning curve that I’ve been hesitant to post the results of my labor lest they seem as far out and hastily put together to you as they sometimes seem to me. And yet I realize that this process is exactly what I need to sharing.
In high school I weighed 118 pounds. At 5’6″ – in my opinion I was much too thin. In my early twenties I weighed about 121. Then, seven years ago, after knowing my weight had crept up but not weighing myself I went to my doctor’s office for my annual physical, got on the scale, and literally burst into tears. I weighed 144. Now, I am well aware that to many this is not “fat”. And even I did not consider myself fat. Yet, at the same time, I was at an uncomfortable weight for me. I didn’t feel good. I was tired and lazy and my clothes didn’t fit well. I knew that things needed to change.
I’ve been ruminating for some time on how exactly to explain what I’m eating right now. The hard and fast rules seem to have a few gray lines. But the hardest thing to overcome are the old hard and fast “rules”.
I was going to write a post about how I’ve gone 30 days without grains of any kind. No wheat, no corn, no soy, no rice and no oats. And this includes oils and food additives like modified food starches and corn syrup (corn syrup solids and high fructose corn syrup, etc.). It hasn’t been easy. It’s surprising how many things have some form of a grain in them like salad dressings, chocolate and ice cream. And then there are obvious things like bread, pasta, crackers and polenta.