Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I went grocery shopping this morning.  Ever since we gave up all processed foods, grocery shopping is a breeze....produce aisle, meat/cheese/dairy/eggs along the back wall, and the healthy food aisle for flours and oils.  So, today I was in the healthy food aisle, which has really become my happy place.  And since I was in my happy place, I was taking my time.  I saw this elderly couple doing their shopping.  I would say they are about 80 years old, Grandma was wearing her "Bears Suck, Go Packers" sweatshirt and Grandpa was wearing his overalls and John Deere cap.  Grandma was booking it up down the aisle grabbing the things she was shopping for....coconut oil, local honey, pure maple syrup, whole grain flour, ground flaxseed....and tossing them into the cart.  I was standing there, with my jaw open because Grandma  clearly knows what she's shopping for.  Obviously, Grandma is not spending her days reading blogs, researching recipes, and watching documentaries on how to eat healthy.  She's been doing this for 80 years, and most likely will be doing it for 20 more!  It was a nice reminder to me that I'm not some pioneer voyaging into a new lifestyle...this lifestyle has been the path that many have followed for decades.  And, I totally want to be that Grandma when I'm 80, yelling at Mr. McGhee to get his old man legs moving because I've got grandkids to get home to cook for.

Seriously though...let's bring old-fashioned back! 

Yesterday, I posted a recipe that I got from Mr. HPT (handsome physical trainer).  Here's the recipe in case you missed it,

  • 1/4 c choc. Almond milk
  • 2 glugs of kefir
  • 4 dashes of cinnamon
  • 1/4 c kale, blackberries (6)
  • (8) blueberries
  • 3tbsp. Protein powder
  • 1/3 banana
  • 2tbsp avocado
  • 4 tbsp Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 c raw oatMeal
  • 3 or 4 ice cubes
1. Blend until smooth.
I made this smoothie for breakfast today.  I didn't have any protein powder, and I added a tablespoon of ground flaxseed. 
Now, this definitely doesn't taste like a frostie from Wendy's but this smoothie is very good.  Out of curiousity, I did a nutritional analysis of this smoothie using a computer program I have from when I was a nutrition student.  After I did the nutritional analysis, I realized I LOVE THIS SMOOTHIE.  Of the 17 vitamins and minerals the program analzyes for, this smoothie has 16 (with B12 being the missing nutrient)!  I am going to drink one of these every single day.  And Mr. McGhee and the minis don't know it, but they are going to as well!  I realize this is a lot of ingredients and prep, so I made little "smoothie bags" and stuck them in the freezer.  Each bag has cinnamon, blackberries, blueberries, banana, avocado, and oatmeal.  All I have to do is dump the contents of the bag with the almond milk, keifer, yogurt, and ice. 
If you know me in real life, and I hand you a bag of seemingly random foods that is my way of saying, "I love you, please blend this with milk, yogurt, and kefir." 
Tonight for dinner we are having pesto vegetable soup.  This is my own recipe, which means all measurements are educated guesses. 
  • 8 cups of vegetable broth
  • 1 can vegetable puree
  • 1.5-2 cups pasta
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup sweet corn
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 5 stalks celery hearts
  • 1 diced red bell pepper
  • 1 small zucchini and/or yellow squash
  • 1 cup cauliflour
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • basil
  • pepper
  • garlic salt
1.  Combine vegetable stock and tomato puree.  Bring to a rolling boil.
2.  Add pasta and diced tomatoes.  Cook until pasta is mostly cooked.
3.  Add all vegetables and let cook 10 minutes at close-to boiling.  Turn down heat and simmer 15-20 minutes. 
4.  Add garlic salt, pepper, and basil to taste. 
5.  Let simmer as long as possible.

I served mine with a big dallop of homemade pesto, which I think turns the soup into something special and delish.

  • one bunch of basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2-4 cloves minced garlic
1.  Throw all ingredients in food processor and blend.

If you prefer, you could add stew meat or your favorite sausage to this soup.  You could also substitute barley for the noodles. 

We had our soup with leftover hamburger buns.  I brush some butter over them and heat them in the oven until warm.  The minis also had a strawberry-pomegranate-banana smoothie.  I gotta tell you, seeing them munching away on this dinner made this mama feel really good.

If you are someone counting calories and/or fat, this soup is an excellent low calorie, low fat option for you!  The pesto is going to add some fat with the olive oil, so you can always leave that out if you want. 

Happy cooking everyone!  If you happen to be an 80 year old Grandma that was at Woodman's today, email me!