Mini-Pledge Week 8: Stop eating when you feel full

Next week’s “real food” mini-pledge is not about what we are eating, but about how much we are eating. Now some of you may think you already stop eating when you feel full, but unless you are French – think again. Based on research, Michael Pollan says instead of using our internal cues to know when to stop eating most of us “allow external, and usually visual, cues to determine how much we [should] eat.” Think back to your last meal…did you stop eating when your gut told you you’d had enough or when your plate was clean, the package was empty, or the T.V. show was over?

Mini-Pledge Week 8: May 2 – May 8 – Listen to your internal cues and stop eating when you feel full. Continue Reading »

Giveaway: Pizza Stone ($50 Value)

Today I am giving away a super high quality pizza stone to one lucky winner. This stone, which retails for $50, is made by Emile Henry and can be used in the oven or on the grill. Until trying their stone myself I’d never before grilled a pizza, although I’ve always been intrigued by the idea. And let me tell you what…the outcome was amazing! We could not believe how different the flavor was of our homemade whole-wheat pizza just by going from the oven to the grill. It was such a nice treat and we definitely look forward to grilling many more pizzas this summer. Continue Reading »

Recipe+Video: Easy Whole-Grain Corn Tortillas

Making corn tortillas from scratch is an incredibly simple process with the help of a tortilla press. And I promise it is Corn Tortillas from 100 Days of Real Foodworth the effort because freshly made corn tortillas absolutely blow away the store-bought bagged version. All you have to do is take a warm homemade tortilla out of the hot pan, sprinkle a little shredded Monterey Jack cheese inside, fold the tortilla over so the cheese can melt, and dig right in with a big bite to know exactly what I am talking about. Yum! And trust me – do not try to take shortcuts by making these without a tortilla press (pictured below) because as far as I’m concerned rolling them out by hand is an impossible task. I’ve tried it several times only to fail miserably so I just want to save you the trouble.

The key ingredient to corn tortillas is “masa harina.” Even though this corn flour does not say “whole grain” on the package I’ve been told it is an exception to the rule. According to the Whole Grains Council, masa harina is not labeled “whole grain” because of the process that’s used to make the flour. Manufacturers start by soaking the corn kernels in an alkali solution; next the liquid is poured off; then the corn is dried and the remaining whole kernels are ground into flour. The thought is that some of the corn is lost when the liquid is drained, but the Council says the loss is so minimal that the end product is very close to a whole grain flour. Continue Reading »

Mini-Pledge Week 7: 100% Whole Grain

If you’ve been following along you knew this one was coming. I’ve been trying to ease everyone into the “real foodmini-pledges by holding off on the harder ones, but the time has come! Even though this next pledge might be a bit challenging for some I am really excited about the learning opportunities that it will bring. In my opinion whole grains are one of the most confusing and hard-to-find food products in the supermarket. From misleading buzz words like “multi-grain” and “wheat” to health-claims on the front of food packages that aren’t backed up by the ingredient list, it sure is treacherous out there.

So here is next week’s mini-pledge that officially starts on Monday:

Mini-Pledge Week 7: April 25 – May 1 – All grains consumed must be 100% whole-grain. Continue Reading »

For convenience: The best store-bought snacks II

Today’s post is a follow-up to a store-bought snack list that I published last year. As dedicated as we are to eating real food and cooking meals from scratch, who doesn’t want a break from the kitchen? So here are several more of the “least-processed” store-bought snacks we could find that are great interspersed with fruits, veggies, and other whole foods. Most of these items are included on the “Supermarket Real Food Cheat Sheet,” but I thought I would take the time to highlight some of our favorites.

All of these products happen to be crunchy and 100% whole-grain (or whole food in the case of the potato chips) so hopefully they will add a little “real food” variety to your pantry. But as a reminder, when you are shopping around for these items never make any decisions based solely on the “whole-grain” health-claims on the front of the package. Always (and I mean always) verify what the product is made of by reading the ingredient label on the back. In the case of crunchy snacks some of the key ingredients to look for are “whole wheat,” “whole grain,” and/or “brown rice.” If the ingredient list contains any “wheat” or “rice” it is not 100% whole-grain so keep on looking! Continue Reading »

Recipe: Tzatziki Sauce

This Greek yogurt-based sauce is incredibly simple to make and versatile. It is traditionally served with souvlaki and gyros, butRecipe Tzatziki Sauce for 100 Days of Real Food we think there are many more possibilities beyond these dishes. Tzatziki can be used as a dip for veggies and whole-wheat pretzels (instead of bottled ranch dressing) or as sauce to pour over chicken. It’s also good thrown into a whole-wheat wrap or pita with vegetables like cucumber and tomatoes. We’ve even mixed it together with whole-wheat couscous and feta cheese…so get creative and enjoy!

Continue Reading »