Tag Archives: real food vs. processed food

What if ….bloggers decided to join together and promote healthy snacks?

26 Feb

Have you noticed that there are many bloggers who are avoiding processed food for snacking?  These bloggers are already influencing the people who read their blogs and the people that live and work in their life.  Many bloggers I read have chosen to go the real food route because of health or allergies.

Photo of inspiration for healthy snacksWith each of us influencing our little world, the economy and the demand for products is changing. Instead of hitting the aisle in the convenience stores we are checking Pinterest on our smart phone for inspiration and making sure we have some healthy items stashed away in the car, backpack or pantry.  It hasn’t made a huge difference yet.  However food companies are feeling cumulative effects of changes to snacking. What could we do if we bloggers worked together?  Maybe a bunch of bloggers could do a day of the healthy snack?

If you like that idea, write a post about it or send a suggestion.  If you have a post on healthy snacking, post it below in the comments so I can pin it to my board.  In the meantime, here is a the recipe I fixed today that was inspired by the one in the picture.  I adapted it and preparing it got me thinking about this post. 

Spicy Crunchy Chickpeas

makes a small batch for one or two snack-ers

1 cup cooked chickpeas  (can use can or cook your own)

1 tablespoon oil  (I used avocado oil on half and Extra Virgin Olive Oil on the other half)

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground cuminchickpeaingredients

pinch cayenne

salt to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Rinse cooked chickpeas and dry by rolling in a towel.  If the skins come off,  you can discard them.  Combine spices and oil and add chickpeas.  Toss to coat evenly and place in a single layer on a baking sheet.  Bake till crispy for about 25 to 35 minutes.  Serve immediately or pack in a dry storage container for later.   There are some recipes that suggest cinnamon.  I will try those next time.

Ponder the possibilities of our consumer actions leading to good results for your body, your family, your community, and our world. That is what we will do right here once a week. ♥ We’ll explore
  • choices made in the home
  • choices made in our places of worship, schools, and other institutions
  • our everyday career, dining, and shopping choices

Send us ideas and comment on suggestions.

 

Advertisements

Real Food Is…

8 Mar

by Deanne

Real food is….food prepared in a kitchen using simple culinary skills and whole food ingredients. For flavor, real food utilizes dried spices or fresh herbs instead of added salt, sugar, and fat. Photo of spices

-as defined by owners of Solar’s Real Food

In our last post we asked how you define real food.   We didn’t get much conversation going, but a lot of views on the blog.  While the definition may change as we venture into the world of real food, we are starting small by making a distinction between food that is prepared vs. food that is processed.  

Processed food is …. a food-like substance engineered in a lab, prepared in a factory and re-heated or combined with other ingredients in a restaurant or home kitchen. Processed food became a larger part of our collective lives during the 20th century.  Now in the 21st century, processed food is under increased scrutiny for health concerns.

Last week Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us was published by author Michael Moss.  The book tells the fascinating story about the business of selling food. If you don’t have time to read the whole book you can read this excerpt called The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food.

Most food companies are doing what businesses do: maximize profits by meeting customer’s needs. Unless they are a smaller food company with a distinct mission, they are probably not set up to give us healthy food choices, those choices are for individual consumers sort out for themselves.

Link to Photo from nytimes articleLike most people, I didn’t pay much attention to all this processed food.  In fact I remember when Oscar Mayer came out with Lunchables. I actually got excited about the ease of use and bought them for special treats.

According the the excerpt from the book, many of us have been buying food that has been engineered to taste good, convenient, and as affordable as possible. As a result, we have become addicted to these food choices. That is really good for food companies and their shareholders but maybe not so good for us  in the long run when it comes to our health.

When enough people want something different, the food companies will scramble to change so they can continue to make money. However because of the addictive nature of processed foods, change is really hard.

I know I have felt overwhelmed by the ubiquity of processed foods in our  busy lives and cravings for tasty convenient food. Confession time…as I write this, I am nibbling on empty sugar calories.

This summer our business will run a mostly real food cafe. We hope people discover that real food can taste good.  Our new menu will feature both real food and processed food on the menu.  When meeting the needs of people with allergies and  food intolerance, and those on special diets,  real food with simple ingredients, makes it easier for people to determine what to order.

As an example, a person could order chicken strips and fries…a fairly traditional fast processed food or a Southwest Rice Plate which is less processed and prepared in our kitchen. The ingredients for the rice plate will be listed on the menu and include things you might find in your own kitchen.  The ingredients on the bag of the chicken strips is not as easy to understand but we do make it available for those that ask.

Solar Gardens-1

In the summer, when the farmers market returns and our garden is producing, we will also feature FarmerChef specials like we did last year.  Change is slow but because we are starting to want these kind of choices when we eat out and travel, we want to provide them to our customers.  

How about you, do you look for restaurants that offer more real food options?