Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Rethinking the Food We Eat

The transformation is slow and multifaceted, but we're leaning more towards vegetarianism.

In January, we realized how much calorie-dense crap we were eating. We stopped eating take-out so many times a week, doubling our grocery budget, but evening out in the end.

A month ago, Chris mentioned the new diet that his friend and his wife are on. As a way to control her severe diabetes, she's on the food pyramid diet with the exception of meat. They are able to eat fish once a week. They feel incredible and energized, and Chris was filled with envy.

Around the time of my surgery in April, we loosened the reins on our wellness plan. I couldn't work out, and I was feeling sorry for myself a lot, and we ate a lot of comfort food (mostly homemade *thanks nana*) and avoided the gym. We've maintained our weight loss, but we haven't dipped down again since then. I suppose if I would eliminate the recent scourge of ice cream cones, the many-mile walks I take every day would actually show up on the scale.

So starting from this middle ground, we bought a couple vegetarian cookbooks. We studied them in detail, marveled at how yummy everything sounded. And then we shopped. There's so much out there in the produce world, in the cheese world, that we hadn't tried much. Asiago cheese? Feta? Asparagus? Come on. We're not foreigners.

That's the whole point. We really want to branch out. There's so many foods out there that aren't part of our Wisconsin-standard diet. Our dependency on ground beef as a staple is crazy, not to mention not very good for us.

So far we've had the following: Three-Cheese Tortellini with summer squash and zucchini, Pasta Rosa Verde with fresh spinach and grape tomatoes, and Asparagus Stir Fry served over rice.

It's been fabulous and oh-so delicious. We aren't planning on abandoning our carnivore status any time soon; we just want to add some variety to our diet. Having a really good reason to visit the local Farmer's Market is also a definite plus. We'll be there bright and early on Saturday to be inspired for another week's menu.