Thursday, July 18, 2013

Garden Bounty - Pickled Cucumbers and Onions.

So I've been growing my own veggies and my cucumbers have just popped out.  While I was trying to figure out what to do with them, I remembered a treat that my grandmother used to make for us.  Most people call them refrigerator pickles but we always called them pickled cucumbers.  She would keep them in a bowl in the fridge and we could eat them up after school.  I didn't get a chance to get her recipe but I think I came up with a pretty good version.
 
Ingredients:
 
4 Cucumbers
 
2 Small White Onions (you can use sweet onions or red onions, if you'd like)

2 Teaspoons Salt

Two Cups Vinegar (I used 1 cup white vinegar and 1 cup UNSEASONED natural rice vinegar.  You can mix it up or use one type only.  Apple cider vinegar can also be used and it makes a sweeter pickle.)

2 Tablespoons No Salt Seasoning.  (The kind I use contains pepper, spices, orange peel)
 
1/3 Cup sugar (If you like sweeter, add more sugar)
 
Ice

Process:

Slice the cucumbers and the onions thinly.  If you have a mandolin, use it but if not, just use a knife. Sprinkle with the salt and toss lightly.  


In a pot, combine the vinegar, sugar and seasoning and bring to a boil.  Remove from the fire and add 4 cups of ice and stir until the ice is melted. 
Pack the cucumbers and onions in jars.  I layered them and packed the jars tightly.  If you don't have jars, don't sweat it, I've also used plastic storage bowls with tight fitting lids.
Pour the cooled vinegar mix over the veggies.  Let it sit for a minute and using a spoon or a skewer, push down on the veggies to push out any air bubbles.  Top with a little more of the liquid to fill in the air spaces.  Cap it and store it in the fridge. Wait a few hours before you give them a try.  It can last up to two months stored in the fridge, if they survive the hungry hordes that long! :)

These can be eaten as is or added to salads or whatever you want.  My mom add the onions to her fresh cooked collard greens.  I've eaten them with fish.  It's a versatile dish.  Try it out and let me know what you think!

SMOOCHES!!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Good things.

This is my inspiration for today.  I can't wait to make a pitcher of iced tea with this! 

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Product Shout Out - Wellesse Premium Liquid Vitamins

My sample pack came with Iron, Calcium w/ Vitamin D, Multivitamin and Vitamin B12 Sublingual.  All taste really great! 


Imagine my pleased surprise at opening my mailbox and discovering, amongst the bills, not one but TWO samples of Wellesse Premium Liquid Vitamins!  I was so glad to see them, and I know it was nothing more than a blessing.  Funds are tight, and my vitamins have been on life support.  These samples will help me get over the hump, and I am so appreciative to the company!

Wellesse is a great support of the Bariatric community, and with us having issue with absorption, it is vitally important to get our vitamins in daily.  Wellesse products taste great, and I'll recommend them to anyone!  Click the link above to visit them and you can let them know I sent you!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Breaking Bonds With Past Food Relationships


 
 
 
The inspiration for this post came from watching a program about childhood obesity on television.  Several of the children they showed came from homes with obese parents.  It’s easy to see how  the kids were so overweight.  One mother sold soul food plates out of her home.  It was the same food she fed her family.  At one time, big meals of fried chicken, dressing, greens, mac and cheese and sweet potatoes were reserved for special holidays or at least only on Sundays.   Some people eat like this every day now.  Along with the soul food, our communities now have the whammy of fast food.  So many children grow up now wanting fast food, as their main meals and I believe those meals contributes to the increase in childhood obesity as well.  Want proof?  Just read the following articles:

Fast food linked to childhood obesity: http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-204_162-591325.html


The relationship between obesity and the prevalence of fast food restaurants: state-level analysis.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15559714

The main core of the issue comes from family ties and traditions.  The families were cooking foods that had been cooked for them.  They shared the recipes that had been learned from mothers and grandmothers.  As a Southern woman, I totally understand this.  Comfort food is the food that you know.  It’s the food that we grew up eating and today it reminds of home, family dinners or other special occasions.   It’s the food that reminds us were are loved, cared for and cherished

Breaking the bonds of our past food relationships is hard.   Once you finally decide to make lifestyle changes, you then have to deal with friends and family who are resistant to your changes.  Some might feel like you are rejecting them and their values.  Some don’t know how to show love accept with food and when you turn down food, in theory, you are also rejecting their love.  

Breaking the bonds without destroying your relationships is important.  This is where communication comes in.  I’ve learned that taking the time to actually talk to your loved ones goes a long way to making them understand what is really going on with you and your new life.  Denying food is not a rejecting of their love.  Instead, it’s developing a love of yourself and your health.  Those who truly love you understand.  It’s not easy for them to change their own habits but we have to realized we are only responsible for ourselves and our actions.  We can’t’ control anyone else’s.

Monday, January 21, 2013

I'm cooking and it's all experimental!

Sundays at home usually find me looking for something to get into.  This usually means finding a way to indulge without over doing it.  I had apples left over from Christmas and I hated for them to go bad before I could eat them, so I decided to try crockpot apple sauce.   Here are the ingredients:


5 large apples (I left the peels on but you can peel if you like)
1 cup of water
2 cinnamon sticks plus 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon of ginger
A drizzle of honey (Optional.  You can also use sugar or sugar substitute or nothing at all!)

(Keep in mind, these ingredients are my taste.  If you don't like one or like more, feel free to play with your food!!) 

Instructions:

Cut and core the apples.  Peel if you wish.  I like the skin so I left it on. 


Add everything to the crockpot and set on low for 6 hours. Don't worry if the amount of water seems small, the apples will release plenty of juice as they cook!
A



After 6 hours, you can leave it like this:
Or you can put it in a food processor or blender in small batches and puree it to the texture you like.  Personally, I like it like this because it reminds me of apple pie filling. :)

This can be eaten hot or cold, alone or with anything you choose to put it on.  I added a little dollop of vanilla yogurt, just to contrast the warmness of it.  It can even be served as a side to a nice pork chop! It's not too sweet and it doesn't compete with the sweetness of the apples.   This is my little sweet treat.  It reminds me of apple pie without all of the overloaded sugar, crust or calories.  

I hope you'll try it and let me know what you think.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!!




Happy New Year to everyone!!  No resolutions for me, I just plan on being the best me I can be and focus on my health, my family, my friends and my faith!!  Be blessed and have a wonderful New Year!!


SMOOCHES!!