I have always been a big fan of Jamie Oliver’s, it started in his days of the Naked Chef. When I heard about his new show Food Revolution, I knew I would watch it and I also knew we would watch it together as a family. As much as I try to tell my kids how important it is to eat healthy, I thought it would help reinforce that idea if they watched the show.
As a family, we have taken Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution to heart and are trying hard to eat less processed food and eat more homemade things. We were already avoiding most processed foods but have taken it a step further and are making more things from scratch. I like knowing what is in my food and my kids are much happier with Mommy and Daddy’s cooking rather than boxed things from the store.
Making things from scratch may take a bit more time, but the effort is worth it to see my kids happily tucking in to their food. Even my son’s lunch box is coming home empty which is a huge feat!
The first big change we made was making all our bread from scratch. My husband is a wonderful baker, a trade he learned at the hands of his father. Watching him whip up a batch of homemade bread is amazing and our kids love to help him mix and knead the dough. In fact he loves making bread so much that he has built himself a bread oven for the backyard and sells homemade loaves at our annual garage sale, but I digress.
The next change we have made is to get rid of our boxed granola bars in favour of homemade ones. I thought I was giving my kids “healthy” granola bars, until I read the ingredients list. If I couldn’t actually pronounce some of the ingredients, why on earth was I giving them to my kids! So I searched the internet and found this recipe that is a winner with everyone (including my husband’s co-workers!). I did however tweek it a bit substituting whole wheat flour in place of all purpose, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon (instead of 1/4) and the first time I made it, I used 1 cup of chocolate chips instead of the dried fruit. I love the versatility of the recipe and plan to keep tweeking it to get my kids to try new things.
So now we have baking Sundays at our house where we whip up batches of bread, muffins, cookies and granola bars for the week. Now instead of my pantry bulging with boxed, processed food, the freezer is bursting with yummy baked goods. When we need a snack on the go, we just grab a couple granola bars out of the freezer and they are good to go in 15 minutes.
These small changes are just the start of what I hope will be my own family’s Food Revolution. Are you watching the show and making changes too? Would love to know what other families are doing to eat healthier.
We are entering my favourite time of year. Sure summer is great, but I love the fall for many reasons. Days are still warm, but nights are cool and crisp, perfect for snuggling under a warm comforter. Kids are back at school and routines return, something my kids thrive on. There are farmer’s markets to browse and shop at, fall fairs to indulge in with cotton candy and caramel apples and drives through the country to look at all the beautiful fall colours.
But my biggest reason for loving fall is the food. During the summer months it is my husband who rules the bbq and does the majority of the cooking. But once the weather turns cooler, I take over and out comes the roasting pans, stock pots and crock pots. I love cooking all the comfort foods of fall, stews, soups, roasts, casseroles, yummy muffins and cakes. And if I stumble upon a recipe that everyone in my family will eat, even better!
The other day I made a Potato Leek Soup that my whole family enjoyed (which is a challenge to do with my picky eaters) and it is super easy.
3 stalks leeks – white parts with a little green (about 2 cups)
3-4 potatoes (about 3 cups)
6 cups chicken/vegetable stock or broth
3 tbsp butter
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp thyme
salt & pepper to taste
Saute the leeks for 3 – 5 minutes in the butter, until soft. Then add the chopped potatoes, thyme and salt and pepper. Stir to coat potatoes with the leek mixture. Add the stock/broth and bay leaves and bring to a boil. Cook 15 – 20 minutes or until potatoes are very soft. Add the milk and then puree soup (remove bay leaves first) and serve. Serves 4.
It’s that easy! Enjoy.
Until next time…Live Well, Laugh Often, Love Much