Wednesday, October 05, 2011

5 Days In

Well, we are officially into our October Unprocessed Challenge and I must admit, it is harder than I thought. Mostly it is difficult for the kids and Dan, although he is kinda ignoring my advice and eating whatever he wants when he is on his own.

So here is a breakdown of what we've been eating for the last 5 days:

Breakfast - I went ahead and made my homemade granola recipe with brown sugar. Sorry, I'm not ready to mess with that. Besides, I don't eat it. My breakfasts are almost solely comprised of eggs, re-fried beans (only beans and salt in those!) and sauteed peppers and onions. But for the rest of the family, I'm willing for them to eat healthy, preservative-free granola, with a little brown sugar, than sugary boxed cereal. I'm hoping to get them eating real oatmeal soon, but these sensitive transitions take time. The kids are still drinking milk, but on the rare occasion I eat oatmeal, I use unsweetened almond milk. In fact, I've been using almond milk as a substitute for regular milk in almost all my recipes (except bread).

Lunch - This has been a bit more difficult. So far the kids have eaten pbj sandwiches on homemade bread. We buy Skippy Natural peanut butter, which may not pass the "completely unprocessed" rule, but it is better than the regular stuff. I searched for jelly made without high fructose corn syrup and was amazed to find a couple of brands at Woodman's that are made from fruit, sugar and pectin. Once again, I'm not totally on the bandwagon of sugar-free yet.
I've mostly been eating tuna or egg salad (with beans), although my mayo is processed. Not sure what I can do about that, except I am planning a trip to Trader Joe's this week and maybe I can find something there. Yesterday I made a salad with chicken and beans and without thinking I added dressing. Oops! Should have been homemade, but it was Newman's Own, which is all-natural, whatever that means. As I start to make more soups this fall, I plan on eating leftovers regularly.

Supper - is the easiest. Most of my recipes are made from scratch and while I do fudge a little when the recipe calls for soy sauce or something of the like, for the most part it is the most un-processed meal of the day.

Dessert - this is for the kids and Dan. I really try to stay away from sugar and unnecessary calories myself, so I rarely partake. But snacks and such are a must for the kids and I have to indulge them with more than apple slices sometimes, so here has been our go-to snack for the week:

  • 1 1/2 cups chickpeas (1 can, drained) (250g)
  • 1/8 tsp plus 1/16 tsp salt
  • tiny bit over 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup nut butter (You can get away with using only 3 T)
  • up to 1/4 cup nondairy milk (Start with 1 T, and add more as needed)
  • Sweetener (see note below, for amount)
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 2 to 3 T oats (or flaxmeal) (You can omit, but also omit the milk if you do)
Add all ingredients (except for chocolate chips) to a blender or food processor, and blend until very smooth. Then mix in the chocolate chips.
Once again, I used brown sugar for the sweetener (2/3 cup), but hey, my kids are scarfing down chickpeas. I can overlook a little sugar for that fact alone. They love to dip apple slices in this and they are convinced they're getting the most sugary treat possible. I love it!!! I also found some amazingly simple graham crackers in the health food aisle, so when apples get boring, I'll break those out.
Next up is homemade applesauce! I hope to be posting some other recipes soon. I can't say we are doing this challenge completely perfectly, but I love that I'm thinking purposefully about my food! Hope you are, too!


Jenni said...
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Jenni said...

Thanks for the recipe! I'm intrigued! Gotta try it to see if it is really as yummy as it sounds... ;)

Crazy Mom said...

Jenni, I have tried it and it really is yummy! :) Donette, I bet you could leave the sugar out of my applesauce recipe and it would still be good, or at the very least substitute something else for the brown sugar.

Missy said...

I'm with you on the completely sugar-free thing - which is to say, I'm not totally sold on it. I've been avoiding white sugars, but I still use brown sugar sparingly. And honey is my go-to substitute. Guess what? I found pure, raw, local honey at a nearby market! I was so excited!