Sunday, January 10, 2010

What's in your kitchen nowadays? (my new staples)

Before I started on this thing, my kitchen and fridge were always empty. I just never went to the grocery store and I dined out or drove through for nearly every meal. A couple times lately I've been to a drive-through and had the odd feeling of not really knowing the process. A strange distance familiarity of ordering the #5 combo from Wendy's "with a diet Coke with no ice" - now what do I do? Drive up? Hey, look, there's a window here! I'm supposed to give that guy money, aren't I? You think I'm exaggerating but I'm not. It was very weird, for something I used to do once or twice a day. About a week ago, when I was having my "last hurrah" I went to the convenience store where I used to get my Krispy Kreme doughnuts, but the bin was no longer there. I asked the lady at the counter about them, and she said that it had been gone for about 7 months. 7 months? Has it been so long?

So as I continue on this journey, when I reach into the cabinets or the fridge, I sometimes think about the transformation of their contents, and of my diet.

These are the foods that I think used to sort of be staples for me:

Restaurant meals (from healthy to calorie-laden)
Candy and cookies
with Raisins?
Eggs and grits (instant)?
Toast with butter and jelly? - not so much
Canned soup?
Diet soda
Ben & Jerry's ice cream
Wine and liquor

Honestly, I don't really remember. Occasionally I cooked, but generally there just wasn't any food in the house.

Nowadays (and for my own edification I itemize a list of general staples):

Low-fat cheeses (cheddar, Ricotta, mozzarella especially) (I never used to eat cheese, now it's everywhere!)
Cottage cheese
Low-fat milk
Soy milk (never used to use)
not so much with the yogurt, though I expect I could change that when I start choosing my own meals more

Nuts (all these nuts, I never used to eat nuts, now they're everywhere!)
Olives (green and black - never used to incorporate them into my diet except at Subway or pizza places)
Avocado (never used to eat avocado at all except on the very rare Cobb salad - and it's wonderful!)
Olive oil
Canola or corn or vegetable oil
nonstick spray
As for spread, I tend to prefer my low-fat butter. I use to little of it anyway.

Coffee (am definitely making more pots of coffee now than ever before, when I would maybe do more Caribou lattes)
Diet soda and Simply Clear artificially sweetened sparkling water
Sugar-free Red Bull
Not as much wine
Tea either not sweetened, sweetened with Splenda, or with honey
Crystal Light
In warmer weather, watered-down fruit juice
(this really hasn't changed much, I was never big on drinking my calories)

Various grains such as...
Oat bran (totally new to me)
Oat meal
Wheat germ
Whole wheat bread, rye bread, whole wheat English muffins (I used to eat on wheat bread anyway, but now there's more of it, plus I love rye bread and never used to have it because - well, rye bread doesn't go with everything and I couldn't even make it through one loaf of bread at home before it would go moldy)
Cold cereal (bran and grape nuts - actually, I don't have this as much as I'd love to)
Rice (brown, jasmine, wild)
Rice cakes
Wheat thins

Assorted fruits - nothing seems to be off-limits here, even dry fruit, though I haven't had as many bananas, and I've had a lot more berries.

Assorted vegetables...
Lots of tomatos
Also squash and zucchini
Bell peppers
Green Onions
Big Yellow Onions
Lettuce and Mixed Greens and Spinach

Not so much, though, as I would like to have had of green beans or cooked greens, though I see no reason why I shouldn't be able to change this.

Assorted meats...
especially turkey, ham, ground beef, roast beef, chicken, tuna, tilapia, canadian bacon, turkey bacon, turkey sausage, veggie sausage, veggie burger

Condiments and flavorings -
mustard, low-fat Duke's mayonnaise, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, low-fat thousand island, vanilla, salsa, vegetable broth, chicken broth

tofu, beans (canned), baked tortilla chips, canned soup, and the *tiniest* teasingest servings of peanut butter Oh, yeah, and protein powder.

Would like to also incorporate more apple butter, jellies, and potatoes, and also the occasional frozen meal, though I'm surprised to admit it. I discovered these frozen Indian dinners and am thinking that if I actually limited myself to a single serving of some of those Stouffer's dinners I'd be okay. Also, making larger quantities at a time (soup, casserole, etc...) and taking servings for myself over the course of the following week. A friend posted on Facebook about her homemade vegetable soup and skillet cornbread and I was instantly jealous (and nostalgic) and needed to have some myself.

It's a full fridge these days.


Vegan Chick Pea said...

That's so great! And I like how you analyzes everything and know how far you've come! :)

Tamzin said...

Nice! what a great list and so so so much better then the drive thru!!

:) You keep on. As for yogurt. Have you tried greek? I like plain greek with honey and walnuts as a dessert treat. Very nice!

Unknown said...

You've come a long ways! In some ways I'm sure that you see that you're saving money by not going out to eat all of the time. But groceries get expensive too!

BEE said...

thats great
what a good variety of foods too
all of which are delicious

youve come a long way

keep up the amazing work