1) I took a second part-time job, which I'm excited about, but I'm going to be busy now and I need to be efficient with my food prep. Here's my idea for a plan: Cook a big pot of soup on the weekend and split into 5-7 bowls for the week (at least 5 for the weekdays). Cook a big pot of greens and onions and mushrooms (I still have lots of kale and collards in the freezer from the garden) and split into 5-7 bowls for the week. Freeze some of them for the later days of the week. Make a batch of soy yogurt (1 qt of soy milk conveniently makes 7 servings). Then each weekday I just have to prepare breakfast, a big salad, and carrots and celery for snacks It will look something like today's food:
Breakfast was the first organic strawberries of the season from California! --along with some frozen (thawed in the microwave) blueberries, mango and cherries topped with home-made soy yogurt. it was excellent!
Morning snack was carrots and celery:
Lunch was my favorite salad right now: lettuce, a little raw spinach, red bell pepper, frozen corn (thawed), edamame (optional, didn't have any today), and "salsa salad dressing" (at left):
2) Here's the salad dressing recipe.
1 can tomatoes
1 Tbsp seeds (my mixture is flax, sesame, chia and hemp hearts)
small amount of raw onion (really small for me, about 1-2 Tbsp chopped)
1/2 garlic clove or less
cilantro (to taste, optional)
1 tsp cumin
1 Tbsp high-quality balsamic vinegar (sweet tasting), or 1 oz lime juice
sprinkle of chipotle powder
Blend part of the tomatoes and juice, onion, seeds, garlic at high speed. Then add the rest of the tomatoes and cilantro and seasonings and cilantro and just blend for a few seconds to coarsely chop.
afternoon snack is more carrots and celery (my favorite snack and the carrots are one of the other few local foods available in Wisconsin this time of year).
Dinner is soup over lettuce and spinach, topped with soy yogurt.
3) Here are some thoughts about restaurant eating. It is still a problem for me. This is because I imagine that people think I'm weird and crazy on the one hand which makes me feel weird and crazy, and on the other hand I don't want to compromise my diet just to please others (thought I will compromise to please myself unfortunately). I don't want to eat oil and salt, which makes most restaurant food off-limits. My strategy lately has been to order a salad with no dressing and top it with contraband that I bring into the restaurant. I had some success last week when an old friend visited. I enjoyed my salads and was happy. But afterwards, I wanted to pig out and go off plan, partly because I used to party with this guy, eating, drinking and being merry. And I did pig out on nuts and go off plan a little bit on chips and hummus. It's ironic that I behave in the restaurant and then misbehave afterwards. I had better success yesterday when I was out with some good friends that I don't have a history of partying with. We were at a Mexican restaurant and I ordered a plate of lettuce and tomato and avocado (which was quite good and nicely plated), and I added some split pea soup (that's just what I would have had anyway). It was really good. Now the real success was that I had almost no urges to pig out or go off plan when I got home (maybe just a slight pig-out urge but it was easy to ignore). Maybe this is because I had earlier apologized to my friends for being so weird about food and they said, you're okay, you're normal, and anyway, what's normal and who wants to be normal in this screwed up society that values consumerism and selfishness etc? And that made me feel better somehow. I'm going to have a lot more social events in the next few month,s as I'm on the search team for a minister at my congregation and we will be wining (maybe) and dining candidates for several weekend-long visits. My desire not to compromise is bigger than my desire not to be weird, but I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable and I don't want to make myself uncomfortable either. I like my salad plan and think I can make it work.