“Eat your veggies!”
You don’t have to tell me twice. Fortunately, I love vegetables; I mean from the hard-core, dark leafy green ones to the orange and yellow root ones. OK, I’m not so much a lima bean and sweet pea girl, mainly because of the texture, not the taste. However, Split Pea soup is one of my favorites – go figure.
In our house when I was growing up, my mother, cooked lots of vegetables, so I really never had a chance not to like them. Although we ate corn, mixed vegetables and such, she didn’t consider those to be ‘real’ vegetables. If she did make those, they were treated more like a side dish to go along with the hard-core vegetables (greens, cabbage, broccoli, green beans, etc.. haha!
I do remember when she introduced broccoli to me, at around 10 years old. She steamed it and covered it in melted cheese. Yum! I could do that. Then, eventually, the amount of cheese was gradually lessened and after a while no cheese at all was added… straight broccoli. She introduced lots of veggies to me that way – never really forcing it but mainly just shared her love of them and it sorta rubbed off on me.
Anyway, I’m not much of a ‘cook’ per se, but, I cook 3-5 different kinds of vegetables per week for two reasons; 1) because I really do like them, and 2) I call them my free food – they fill you up and keep you healthy too. In the beginning of my ‘get healthy journey’, I used to count every calorie throughout the day, but because I eat so many vegetables, I was not meeting my caloric intake by the end of the day. Seriously, you can eat mounds of vegetables in a day and end up eating only about 500 calories. That’s a good thing in a way but I had to start NOT counting any of my veggie calories – hence, Free Food! So now, whenever I am hungry, I go to any number of vegetables and the calories don’t even count. Nice!
This week’s veggie menu includes:
Rutabagas – I have these about once per month! I buy it fresh – yep, a big old wax ball of a vegetable. They used to be really difficult to peel and cut but I noticed a couple of years ago that they are now really easy to cut. I’m guessing a new variety has been developed.
Green Beans – I buy Whole Frozen Green from Publix. Publix frozen vegetables are so good – no stems, really fresh tasting, and they often have a sale of 8 bags for $10.
Spinach – I bought fresh this week; although in a pinch, I will buy these frozen too.
Cucumbers – Cucumbers are like the snack food of choice – looooow calories, crunchy, and filling because they are mostly water. I sometimes will put them in a bowl, sprinkle with Himalayan salt and coarse black pepper, and spritz with Rice Vinegar for a bit of a sweet/tart flavor. You can down a ton of cukes and you’ll be weight safe.
Big Red Bell Peppers – Boy do I love these too. I found out if I buy organic ones, they don’t get slimy by day 4 of being sliced in the fridge. Interesting, huh? Sometimes the organic ones cost less than the non-organic ones. I eat them raw, and treat them like the cukes with salt, pepper and vinegar sometimes.
(Frozen Whole Baby Okra ) – was on the menu to cook, but after making all the others stuff I decided not to cook these. Might have been too much. These are delicious too. I get them from Publix also – they are small, tender, and tasty. None of the big ‘ol tree bark tasting ones that are often put in bags of frozen okra. I will steam them mid-week if I run out.
Y’all think I’m joking when I say I love veggies huh? Well, get this … I do often eat them for breakfast. I’m not a big fan of most breakfast foods. I don’t like sugary and bready things in the morning because I found out that if I eat that in the morning, it triggers my hunger button and I end up being hungry all day long. However if I eat protein and veggies in the morning my appetite seems to be more balanced all day and I have less of a tendency to want to munch. I know it’s crazy – and I’ve been laughed at more than once over the years about it but it’s all in fun. Broccoli, okra, salad, green beans, greens, and spinach have all been on my breakfast menu before.
About proteins – I’ve never been a big meat eater, and at one time I could have probably been considered a vegetarian but after a few years of battling anemia I decided to eat more meat. So along with all these vegetables, I throw in chicken and salmon quite often, and once every couple of months, I will buy 1-lb of the best, organic, lean grass-fed ground beef I can afford and make 2 oz patties for each day of the week. It’s just enough to keep my body and mind happy.
That’s it – so what vegetables do you plan to have this week?
Let me know if you have any questions!
Peace and Love!