I thought that was brilliant. It gave me chills.
Then I had ice cream cake.
The truth of the matter is, food is powerful stuff. We take for granted all that it can do for and against us. I find myself shaking a fist at the ice cream that has crept its way into our freezer (I didn't buy it, I swear). I can't help but salivate for loaves of bread with gobs of spread (butter, jam, makes no difference). It takes will power to avoid those things we know are not so good for us. Our brain wants them so badly, but our body's cells cry out in anguish ... I have a feeling that's where eater's remorse comes from. I experience that pretty frequently.
I find this to be a really lovely shot of mussels at Chauncey Creek Lobster Pier.
Plus, mussels are gluten free. I'm addicted to them.
And then there are the folks who have been told, either by a doctor, nurse or surgeon, "You have a ___ allergy." Insert whichever one suits your situation.
Then, imagine that after you've been given this diagnosis you realize that everything you've eaten in the past week contained that allergen. It is so embedded into your life that you have no idea how to get rid of all of it at once. What would you eat?!
We don't all go through it, but a lot of us do. I'm here to tell you that there is no end to the pleasure of good food. A lot of our problems arise from processed foods. Put a whole-foods spin on things and you'll feel like a new (wo)man. Do a lot of label reading. If you can't pronounce it, don't eat it. Scratch that: if a five-year-old can't pronounce it, don't eat it.
I have lots of clients who have to avoid gluten in particular. I have my own theories on the exploding population of people with gluten sensitivities and ciliac disease ... theories that involve GMO wheat and maniacal corporations viewing our heads like giant wallets ... but I digress.
Living gluten free, dairy free, garlic free (yes, I know people with garlic sensitivities) might not be easy at first, but it is possible. If you feel like you're in over your head, perhaps it's time to call a nutritionist and a personal chef? Talk about a weight off your shoulders (and your middle ... hehe!). Our job is to make sure you stay healthy, but also that you can still find joy in your meals every day.
If you aren't excited about every single meal or snack that comes into your life, you need to make some adjustments.
Maybe the following lines of text could help you find new meals you may not have thought of before?
How about some recipes and pretty pretty pictures?
This here is from a girls weekend with my foodie friends from college. Chicken on the grill with that simple Lemon Anything vinaigrette I wrote about a few posts back. We threw some asparagus on the grill, too. And then the grill lit on fire- like, engulfed in flames. We had to turn the propane off and back away slowly. Thank goodness the chicken was cooked all the way through.
Gluten and dairy free turkey burgers! I used brass fennel, garlic, salt, pepper, olive oil and an egg. Usually I would recommend adding some bread crumbs to the mixture to add girth, but it really isn't all that necessary. These were dynamite. Turn them into meat balls and douse them with marinara and you have the makings of a great Italian meal. We put these together during a romantic week away.
Fennel Turkey Burgers:
1 LB ground turkey (93-7 works really well)
2 Tbs fresh chopped fennel fronds
2 minced cloves of garlic
1 Tbs olive oil
1 medium egg
S & P ... about a tsp each
Form into four equal sized patties and allow to chill for a few minutes. Grill on high heat until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees or more.
The next night we did Puttanesca Haddock with Green Beans:
1 1/2 LB haddock fillet
2 cans (14 oz) of diced tomatoes in juice
2 minced cloves of garlic
3 Tbs olive oil, divided
1 or two anchovies, depending on how you like it
1/2 cup kalamata olives
1 Tbs capers
2 Tbs fresh chopped basil
1 LB washed and snapped green beans
S & P to taste
Start fish in a 400 degree oven, dressed with some olive oil, salt and pepper. Cook until opaque in the center. Meanwhile, start one Tbs of oil in a pan over medium heat. Add garlic and anchovy and allow to cook until anchovy is liquefied into the mixture. Add tomatoes and allow to heat through. Next add olives and capers. Allow sauce to simmer until slightly reduced and saucy. Toss all that basil in just before serving. Blanch green beans in hot, salted water until bright green, then rinse with cold water to stop cooking. Toss with remaining oil, salt and pepper.
Arrange on plates with beans first, then sauce, then serving of fish, then more sauce. This meal should feed four people, but it fed Mark and I just fine with some left over to give to a friend who lived nearby.
The following night was baked sweet potatoes with maple sugar and butter, grilled corn, and sirloin steak with a my newly invented and brilliantly dubbed: Up-North Guiness Sauce. BAMF!
Up-North Guiness Sauce
This is powerful stuff flavor wise. It can be devious on its own, but slather it on some Porterhouse and you have heaven on a plate.
1/2 bottle traditional Guiness (a bit more if you enjoy more of a beer taste)
3 Tbs maple syrup
3 Tbs unsalted butter
S & P to taste
Throw all of that into a pan and allow to simmer on low heat until reduced significantly. Spoon over anything that once had a face.
I put this together and used the ratios strictly by accident and I was beyond thrilled with the results. It will be a repeat offender in my kitchen from here on out.
These are Chocolate Cherry Heirloom Tomatoes. They're producing fruit the fastest in our garden. Very excited to watch them change color!
I've been told I need to stop eating so much cheese. But with a place like Butter's Fine Food and Wine just a stone's throw away, that might not be possible. I'll give up ice cream instead. Maybe.
Now *that* is a healthy looking grill. It all came together for Melissa's next birthday dinner (one that fell on her actual birthday- well done, sister).
So, I had found this recipe on an epicurious app and made it for some clients. I liked it so much it was what I decided to bring to the party. Too bad I wasn't bright enough to take a picture of it with the sauce. Just imagine it's beauty for me.
Grilled Shrimp with Tzatziki Sauce and Greens
1 LB large/jumbo shrimp
1 cup diced cucumber
1 cup Greek style yogurt (I used Cabot)
2 Tbs lemon juice
2 Tbs chopped dill
2 Tbs minced shallot
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
5 oz mixed greens, or lettuce right out of the garden (my preferred option)
1 Tbs olive oil
S & P (lots of it)
Skewer your shrimp, dress them with olive oil, salt and pepper and grill them for about 3 to 4 minutes on each side- you know ... until they're done.
In a bowl mix the next five ingredients together and season generously with salt and pepper. Allow the mixture to chill for a bit.
Lay your shrimps on a bed of lettuce and sprinkle them with the feta. Serve with LOTS of the sauce. Be sure to make extra sauce because you'll want the leftovers to put on everything. That stuff could make a gym sock taste amazing.
I've been long winded enough for this post. I'm glad you lasted through the whole thing! Thanks for reading!
And remember, no matter what adversity your gut may face there is always a way to appease the gastric gods. Don't hesitate to ask for advice, find an awesome food blog to follow (*ahem!*), and try new things!
Now ... I have a bone to pick with the remaining ice cream in the freezer. I'm going to give it a piece of my mind.