When I first read Nourishing Traditions, I was motivated, excited, encouraged and OVERWHELMED . . . . so much to do and so little time, not to mention the sporadic seasons of life where we hardly cook at home at all (read: now). Also, I don't have the luxury of farmers markets (although we do have fruitstands!) and I am rather reluctant to make twelve stops at twelve different places with three children to get in and out of carseats. We decided to take baby-steps (a little is better than nothing, right?) and slowly move towards more nourishing eating.
The thing I love about Nourishing Traditions is the underlying, unspoken message that God knew what he was doing in giving us food and that whole foods are best and frankly, you don't have to branch out super far to get adequate nutrition. (The Alaskans who live on meat alone, for example) Don't get me wrong, I still LOVE junk food --I wish I didn't, but I do. However, I'm trying to make better choices and give my kids a healthier, wiser palette than I have!
Here are some of our "baby steps":
1. Whole, organic milk, but in smaller quantities. My kids drink milk once a day, Owen twice. Sometimes we do coconut or almond, but Owen does not not take that.
2. Butter! We are not in a place where we eat "centrifuged butter from milked cows grazing on rapidly growing spring and fall grass", but we do eat the "real" stuff.
3. Good fats: Coconut, Peanut, Olive Oils . . . and real Lard. : ) Not all expeller pressed and perfect, but better than others, I suppose
4. Whole Wheat flour when we do bake (not as often)
5. Corn instead of flour tortillas
6. Local honey for our coffee and other applications.
7. Less white sugar in everything. I've been baking a lot with palm sugar.
8. White rice on "special occasions." (as a side note, Alton Brown's brown rice recipe is marvelous--especially if you've had unsatisfactory results before)
9. No more juice in the house. I realized that my kids only wanted juice and were
rejecting water. Even though it was diluted, it was a lot of sugar. When I stopped buying it an amazing thing happened: water consumption rose like all get out! Now they ask for water. : )
10. Oatmeal and Eggs are our breakfast staples. No cereals at all.
11. Better eggs--still not sure if the more expensive grocery eggs are truly better, but I'm buying into it. My goal is to find local eggs and I saw a possible source at the fruitstand the other day.
12. Home-cooked beans instead of canned.
13. We found a butcher in Crystal Springs who sells pork bellies, so we've made several batches of our very own bacon--free of nitrites (natural or otherwise). We're planning another round soon since our fridge is empty for camp.
14. A grass-fed beef cow--we bought a share with some friends (and a deep freeze-haha).
That's what we've done, and there is so much more I want to try! Over-all, we've reduced our wheat and carbohydrate consumption in general which has been so good for us. Our next goals are:
1. Aluminum free baking powder
2. Soaked, sourdough breads
3. Local eggs
4. Organic Chickens
5. A hog?
6. A modest garden, since organic produce is costly.
7. More organic produce.
8. Experimenting with grains like Quinoa, spelt and others and soaking.
10. Better eating out choices, both nutritionally and in the way companies are run (if this means more Five Guys and Chik-fil-A, I'll go for it)
11. Less candy in the house and in our mouths (I guess the fact that we are still eating Christmas parade candy should make me feel better?)
What are your goals?