Setting Up Your House

     What happens when you decide to take the plunge and go full bore.  I remember when we decided to do this, I was super excited and then after a couple of meals I thought to myself, this food is so bland and I don't think I can continue this for the rest of my life!  By that time I had thrown out everything from my house.  All the "good" stuff was gone!  What do I do now?  What am I going to eat?  We threw out all of our processed foodies, sugar, breads, cheese etc.  We decided that if we were going to do this we had to rid our house of all temptations.  It has to be a commitment.

     We went to the store and avoided all the inside isles except the spices.  Now spices for this lifestyle are very important!  As we have cooked for the last 4 months we have experimented with a great many spices.  I think if you like gravy like my husband does you are going to need poultry seasoning.  We made gravies a lot at first, but have since gotten used to not eating potatoes and rice without anything on them.  The poultry seasoning though at the time was a God send.

     Spices that we use frequently are garlic and onion powder.  Try to stay away from spices containing salt.  Trust me your taste buds will change and you won't even crave it anymore.  Then when you do have something salty it's overpowering!  We also use liquid smoke, it is heaven in a bottle.  Be careful though a little goes a long way.  A lot of recipes call for smoked paprika, but for the life of me I can't find it so I substitute the liquid smoke. I also use cumin and chili powder a lot as well especially in tacos, and chili  In looking at the spices at Costco, we found one called organic no salt seasoning.  It is a blend of 21 organic spices.  It is so good on quiona and rice, tastes like Thanksgiving.  Sage is another awesome spice to have.

     I didn't really buy a lot of spices at first.  I just found recipes and got the spices piece meal.  Experimenting with spices can be fun and then not so fun.  Find ones that you love and toss the rest.  Finding those flavors that your family will eat is important.

     Condiments help in cooking as well.  I spend a little more and buy pure maple syrup.  It's so much better and contains no high fructose corn syrup.  I also use black strap molasses.  It's different than the regular molasses.  It's a more bitter flavor, but is good in baked beans etc.  It is nutrient rich containing iron and calcium.  I tried it in oatmeal, and it was over powering, yuck didn't like it at all.  Apple cider vinegar is another condiment that I use.  I love vinegar and it's good to eat fermented foods.  I use ACV in my 3-2-1 salad dressing, and sometimes I use rice vinegar plain on my salads.  

     What about broth.  I was buying vegetable broth for a time, but it's so much cheaper and better to make your own.  Remember less processed the better and homemade always tastes better.  Whenever I chop vegetables, I throw the leftovers i.e. ends of carrots, broccoli stems, etc. in a freezer bag and then when I've got a full bag, I make my own broth.

     Appliances have come slowly, and there are still some things that I would like to get, but most are not cheap and really you can do with what you have.  Some are more convenient to have.  I have a blendtec but I have had that for a time.  I recently got an Instant Pot (pressure cooker) that I absolutely love and use it all the time. Save your pennies.  Amazon usually has the best prices and since I work so much it's so convenient to have it delivered right to my door.  Amazon Prime helps a lot since most items ship for free no matter how much you spend.  Amazon Prime is 99.00 per year.  TOTALLY WORTH IT!   I started with a hand held sprilizer and then got a regular size when I could.  If you can't purchase one right this second, use your peeler.  It works!

Image result for spiralizer zucchiniImage result for spiralizer zucchini
     Another thing that I have tried to do is get different kinds of grains.  Oats, steel cut oats which are are my favorite, but steel cut can't be used for baking.  Almond flour and wheat flour and spelt, barley, coconut flour, millet. There are so many things to experiment with.  I try to go to a store that sells in bulk.  It's so much cheaper.

     Beans are a big part of this lifestyle.  Dried beans are much cheaper, but if you don't plan a head then you won't have them soaked in time for meals.  That is where my instant pot comes in handy. My all time favorite legumes are black beans and they contain the most protein.  Because I eat them frequently I buy them canned.  I'm trying to expand my horizons though.

     There is so much to learn and try, and I'm still in the learning process.  I grew up on the standard American diet and this is all new to me.  As I continue to learn, things have taken on so many wonderful flavors.  I no longer crave the fast food, or want the junk.  A cherry tomato has the most amazing flavor now.  This lifestyle continues to amaze me.  I'm losing unwanted pounds and enjoying the ride. I will never return to old habits.  Even my taste for meat are gone.  I never thought in a million years that this would happen to me.  Just shows me that you never say never.  


lisslalissar said...

Now I want to come to your house for dinner! I'm going to go vegetarian this summer. I'll let you know how it goes.

naomi3 said...

Awesome! Let me know if you need anything!

Anonymous said...

Have you tries batch cooking your black beans then freezing as an alternative to buying canned? Could be helpful for you :) congrats on your success going plant based!

naomi3 said...

I have done that, and then I forget they are in the freezer! LoL. Thank you though!