Monday, May 21, 2012

Broccoli is My Bag, Baby, Yeah!

I've mentioned before that broccoli and I have never been friends. I spent my childhood hating it and avoiding it at all costs. Over the years I've learned to tolerate it, especially if it's smothered in some sort of savory sauce (like in Chinese food. Yum.) When I was pregnant with Katie, I went out of my way to eat as much broccoli as I could stand, because I know it's packed with goodness. Broccoli conforms to my theory that the worse a food is for you, the better it tastes, and vice versa. So when I'm trying to eat healthy, naturally my thoughts turn to broccoli as the king of all foods. (Which it probably isn't - but no one can deny it's at least got some nice vitamins and minerals.)

Lately I've been thinking a lot about the foods I feed my family. I'm a struggling homemaker - I don't like cooking. Actually, I loathe cooking. (I generally loathe things I'm rubbish at.) I recently made a list of all the things I know how to cook semi-successfully, to aid with weekly meal planning. Guess how many things I can cook? 17. And that includes Rice-A-Roni, grilled cheese, spaghetti, and Breakfast For Dinner.  Sigh.  So I've been checking out cookbooks at the library, hoping to be inspired.

In the cooking section I came across a book called The Locavore's Handbook by Leda Meredith. I skimmed the first few chapters (I don't have time to actually READ, folks!!) and started to hyperventilate a little. There are about a zillion great reasons to eat locally, and they're all reasons that hit home to a Crunchy Mom like me. Reducing carbon footprint. Reducing the use of pesticides. Eating in sync with the seasons. Being a locavore (meaning, getting all your food from within a specific radius of where you live; in Leda's case, 250 miles) is said to be more eco-friendly than recycling: "Buying 25 percent of your groceries from local farmers for a year lowers your carbon footprint by 225 pounds -- even more than recycling glass, plastic, and cans!" -- Eating Well Magazine, Feb 2009

So why the hyperventilation? Because I should be doing this, and I'm not. I'm SO not. I buy nearly everything frozen because I'm so lost at sea when it comes to dinner. We live on Trader Joe's meals at least once a week, sometimes twice. So naturally I'm asking myself, How on earth can I eat locally when I can barely figure out how to put a meal together? <wheeze wheeze wheeze>

But I'm pulling myself together. Baby steps! That's what Flylady says. Don't worry about where everyone  else is, just jump in where you are and take baby steps so you don't burn out.  So my baby step is broccoli, because Katie loves it and it's something I should be making an effort to feed to my family. Yesterday I bought it FRESH at the grocery store.  That's baby step #1: I have to figure out how in the heck to cook it. (Just kidding, I'm gonna steam it. I just don't know how long...oh boy.)  Baby step #2 will be buying broccoli weekly at a farmers' market.  Just one thing, which I hope will snowball into a whole new locally-sourced lifestyle.  I'll keep you posted!

More broccoli! Nom nom nom

1 comment:

  1. I'm impressed! As my cooking skills amount to 15 under yours (Rice a Roni being 1 of them...), I have even further to go, so bully for you for just diving in! Or baby stepping in, to quote on you quoting on the Flylady. :)