Wednesday, February 25, 2009

New Post, Finally

I've been so distracted and uninspired to blog, so it's with great thanks to Nicole that I am stepping up to bat here.

Part of the problem is, how many more times can I talk about Mark Bittman?

And yet.... what happens two days ago, but a tutor I work with gives me, unprompted, unasked for, unsolicited, a copy of Mark Bittman's latest book, Food Matters. (Thank you, Michael! Seriously, I'm loving it. )

I'm completely inspired by it, now that I've gotten past the glaring injustice of Mr. Bittman telling us all to eat less meat while he's off blogging about whole-pig dinners and taking pictures of rare steaks to taunt all of us. 

It turns out he's really changed his diet, blah blah blah and he's got lots of inspiring advice for eating less meat, blah blah blah. I'm not going to talk about him anymore. It's my blog, I'm talking about me. 

Our efforts to eat less meat have not exactly gotten off the ground. Hey, I'd be happy to eat at Angelica Kitchen three meals a day. Give me Dragon Bowl for breakfast, seitan curry for lunch and a bunch of raw root vegetables for dinner, and I'm happy. (Well, I don't know if happy is the right word, but I'd be more than okay, as long as I got a burger once a week.) The problem is... the kids. 

My daughter, the five-year-old carnivore who takes after her mother in many respects -- except for her mother being almost 40 and a little more in control of her tempestuous appetite , ahem, a little more grown up -- wants nothing but meat for breakfast. 

This makes it hard, especially as I want thick cut applewood bacon some mornings, too.

Anyway, this is the bulk of my current strategy, in many parts derived from Food Matters:

- Instead of worrying about eating less meat, trying to eat more vegetables. Just freaken packing them on. So if I'm having a slab of goat cheese on a Wasa cracker, I'm putting a bed of arugula or sliced cucumbers underneath the cheese. If I'm heating up spaghetti or rice, I'm throwing on a thick handful of chopped broccoli or kale. This is so awesome. I'm completely into it. 
- Keeping a grain and/or a bean or a soup in the fridge as often as possible, for easy last minute meals.
- Serving two vegetables at dinner instead of one and a starch (this is from my friend Nick).
- We still have the thick cut bacon on weekend mornings, but I've been cutting the whole slab in half, and just using one half to feed us all, along with eggs or toast, or whatever. No one, not even Chris, has noticed. I use the other half in a lentil dish, or slowly throughout the week.

That's sort of it. I already kind of eat this way, surrounded by vegetables, so I'm just amping it up, and hoping it will replace the animal flesh a little more. The problem is, my sort of boundless ability to put back vast quantities of food. Will bushels of greens really keep me from craving steak? Can 2 pounds of vegetables really satisfy as much as a pound of rib-eye? Hmm, toss em in enough butter, we might be onto something.

The other problem: my kids aren't doing it. 

No comments: