Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Real Food Challenge Kick-off - Breakfast

Happy March first everyone.  Today is the first day of the Real Food Challenge hosted by Not Dabbling In Normal.  Although we've been eating mostly whole organic foods for quite some time now, there are some things I would like to do to eliminate some processed and prepackaged foods from our household. 

It's really mind boggling to think about all the things in our lives that are processed and prepackaged.  It's not hard to spot them when you look in your kitchen.  Although some of them can be healthy alternatives/additions to our diets, some of them are just plain junk.  In addition to avoiding food that comes from countless miles away, you can save precious environmental resources simply by reducing the number of prepackaged foods you purchase.  Especially the individually packaged items like granola bars and fruit leathers.

So, as it stands, my goals are these:
-  to work on eliminating already prepared snack foods, breakfast foods (like boxed cereals), quick comfort foods (boxed mac-n-cheese), and just easy-to-use prepackaged foods (packaged pastas). 
-  to create a growing plan for those veggies for which we still rely on far away sources to obtain.
-  to see if we can source some staples we don't grow from local sources.

As we work towards lifestyle changes, it's important to take small, achievable steps towards our larger goals.  This way, we can feel a sense of accomplishment without feeling overwhelmed.  Small steps are easier to absorb and assimilate into our lifestyles.  They are often the changes that become permanent.  We, as a couple, then as a family, did not get to where we are overnight.  It involved years of reading, thought, decision making, research, discussion, incorporation, ...  We continue to learn and make changes that will lead us to a more sustainable lifestyle.  One that we can feel comfortable with.  One that impacts our fragile planet the least.

So let's start out on a good note.  Breakfast!  The most important meal of the day.  I love breakfast.  And, although in tomato season, I definitely get stuck in the tomato toast rut (happily stuck, that is), I do like a good and varied breakfast.  What options do we have other than the standard breakfast cereal?  Well, I'm glad you asked.  Here are some ideas I like to use for breakfasts (recipes for some to come in the days ahead):

muesli or granola with home made yogurt
breakfast frittatas
peek-a-boo eggs
fruit smoothies (from fresh or local frozen)
tofu potato cakes
home made muffins
home made quick breads
good old-fashioned toast (with home made bread)
eggs poached in our canned tomato puree (super tasty!!)
oatmeal with local syrup and local frozen fruits
hot cereal made from local grains (similar to cream of wheat)
apple crisps or fruit cobblers
breakfast burritos
breakfast strombolis

Some of these things can be made the night before for quicker breakfasts.  Some of them take a bit of prep in the mornings.   Last winter I made a batch of quick cooking oatmeal "packets" for my kids to make on their own.  I used the basic recipe from this site, but eliminated the salt.  I added some extras according to what my kids would like - cinnamon dried apple, raisin nut, coconut...  I store them in used paper bowls with lids from a local restaurant.  In the next couple of days, I will be making these packets again for fast breakfasts and snacks.  Munch can boil water and help her brother and sister prepare the packets.

What do you like to eat for breakfast?!


Zonnah said...

I eat a LOT of oatmeal. It is one of the few things my son will eat. I will have to give the poached egg in tomato puree, that sound yummy :)

alayne said...

Hi Zonnah! Thanks for stopping by!! I ended up making the oatmeal packets yesterday. My oldest daughter loves loves loves them.