Friday, September 2, 2011

Upgrade Your Meal!

How easy is it to get into a dieting rut with the food that we put in our mouths. How many times a week do we succumb to choosing quinoa and steamed kale - just because it's easy and good for you?

I am a firm believer that in order to maintain momentum on any healthy lifestyle journey you need to keep things exciting and fun!  Use meal time as a chance to present yourself something worth while - something worthy of you and your body!

There are 2 ways you can achieve this: 1. Serving Ware, and 2. Choosing the right foods.

Obviously, I'm going to start with the first one, because it requires some shopping.

Why do we only use our "good" china just for special occasions? Shouldn't every time we choose a healthy, balanced meal be cause for celebration?  Here are my suggestions to get yourself excited just by serving ware:

Forget the idea of using smaller plates to limit calorie intake. Loading up on nutrient dense, delicious foods is reason to get yourself some fancy, gorgeous plates! While it's not economical to purchase sets of dishes just because you like the design, lots of stores now are offering the opportunity to buy individual pieces:
Verdant Acres DinnerwareSliced Persimmon Dinnerware

Anthropologie have some beautiful dinner ware options. To out fit your entire cupboard would be outrageous in price - but picking up a piece or two is quite reasonable!

If you aren't quite thrilled about paying anywhere from $18-$24 a plate, then your local thrift store is a great place to start a collection of retro and vintage china. Our thrift store sells china plates for $0.25! Pick up some fine china to serve some delightfully light tea sandwiches. Grab some vintage parfait glasses for Overnight Oats, or your yogurt and granola!

Focusing on serving ware - try something like "amuse bouche" spoons to dress up your snacks or chop sticks for the extra challenge! I would save a lot of calories if the only way I could feed myself was from chopsticks.

Amuse bouches are a great place to bring up the second component to making your meals exciting and enticing. While we would all love either a. the time required to come up with master piece dishes, or b. and perhaps, more likely, someone to just make us gourmet food. all. the. time.  clearly this is unrealistic. This doesn't mean however that your food has to be boring and repetitive.  Here are some tips that I frequently use:

  • Take a look at the standard foods you regularly eat. Could you use some new spices or maybe incorporate fresh herbs to give it a new kick? If you are constantly stuck on that same "Mrs. Dash" spice, try out curry powder, fresh herbs like oregano, thyme or rosemary, or my favourite smoked paprika!
  • Go to the farmer's market, or even your produce aisle and pick up a vegetable that you have never used before, or something that intrigues you. Yesterday at the farmer's market I picked up some Patty Pan squashes. 
  • Once a week pick up something that is pure decadence, but still maintaining your healthy lifestyle. Things like a raw&organic cheese, large&scrumptious prawns, smoked salmon, or perhaps some extraordinary, organic produce from Whole Paycheck
  • Find some fancy, artisan spreads (like gourmet mustard, organic dressings, or something new from a cuisine you have never tried before). They may be initially expensive, but a little goes a long way.
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  1. thanks! I need to take my own advice, so I am heading down to the local foodie store and picking up something new and weird...(i'm thinking seaweed...?)