Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Eating Healthier......

I've been on my husband for YEARS about eating healthier and exercising more. Ever since we got back from visiting his "long lost" family,I've started to see a few changes in him. He has drasticly cut back on how much sugary sodas he drinks. Instead of the usual case of regular sized cans or the tall bottles of soda,I have been buying the mini-size bottles. Usually where he could easily go through a case or more a week,he's still working on the pack I bought him 2 weeks ago. He's been drinking water and "diet" citrus green tea. I found a green tea blend that I can make iced tea with and I've been drinking more of that. I've also been eating less bread--I prefer wraps anyway and always go for the healthiest ones-low carb/no fat. He has been eating more whole wheat/whole grain bread whenever he has his fave pbj sandwiches. His sister's family for the most part eats very healthy meals. While we were there she made a pasta dish using whole wheat (dreamfield's) pasta. Now whenever I'd make something with whole wheat pasta,he would complain about having to eat it. I've made 3 pasta dishes in the past few weeks,and he hasn't said ONE WORD about it. That is until last night,he commented on the last spaghetti I made for him. He said "you know,that whole wheat pasta isn't that bad"! Yeah,I know,honey,it's not. LOL We have eaten more fish too. Usually,the fish here isn't all that good--at least most of the frozen ones that I've tried. I don't think it's the same brand that his sister uses at their fish market,but I am pretty sure it's the same "cut". We've been having TILAPIA at least twice a week. Before,we would have salmon or fancy fish sticks maybe once a month or so. Now I crave fish. I even made a shrimp boil last Friday,and aside from it being too HOT,it was fabulous! I am definately going to try that again--this time without so much spice! He went to the E/R over the weekend for an eye infection and they weighed him and he was 201. He went to his regular dr today for a follow-up about the infection, and he's down another 3 pounds. I did a cleanse last week and am this week starting a diet. Not really a DIET per say,but I am starting to consciously make better food and drink choices. Hopefully,I will begin to see a change, too. I hope to get us all into the routine of getting up early and walking the dog around the neighborhood. I know all of us could use the extra exercise. It's funny how meeting his family and finding a part of his life that he didn't really know was missing has caused these changes in him. It's not like he was sitting around moping or lamenting the situation,but he mentioned to me that he feels different since this whole thing has come about. It's amazing that even though my husband and his sister grew up very differently--they have similar personalities. He told me that he can't understand it-that even though they have only known each other a few weeks,that it feels like they have known each other FOREVER. I'm so glad it's worked out this way.I'm glad that he's finally taking a look at his health and hopefully these good changes will become new habits. The only other thing I wish he would try and STOP for his health is the tobacco-he's a "dipper". It really grosses my son out that he does it and he is really on him to stop it. (remember those REJECT ALL TOBACCO commercials--RAT!) I told him that it's something that his dad has to want to do. The last time I picked it up for him,I picked up some mint tobacco and mint "packets" that are supposed to help him stop. I hope he gets the hint.

Friday, May 18, 2012

New family-New foods......

Kofta with tahinni and jasmin rice with dates

Well,last week,we went to South Carolina to visit my husband's "long lost family". It was an amazing adventure. It still seems surreal. His sister's husband is Egyptian and made some awsome foods for us during our stay. They run a seafood market/restraunt-so needless to say,they can cook! One night during our stay,Waleed cooked KOFTA KEBABS for us. They were delicious! I made them tonight and the husband didn't have any complaints. I hope to learn more about the food culture of Egypt--and try many more delicious dishes.

Kofta Kebabs
ground meat
kosher sea salt
minced garlic
grated onion
ground coriander
ground cumin
ground cinnamon
ground allspice
ground ginger
ground nutmeg
chopped fresh parsley
chopped fresh mint
ground black pepper
**bamboo skewers

mash the salt and garlic into a paste-place the garlic paste into a large bowl-add in your meat and spices--mix well by hand-form into balls-place onto skewer--you can either cook on grill or in the oven.

**I baked ours for convenience.

Jasmin Rice with dates
add chopped dates to the rice as it is cooking-cook on medium/low until all the liquid is gone-serve warm.

Tahini Sauce
Tahini paste
minced garlic mashed into a paste with salt
lemon juice
HOT water

Add equal parts of tahini paste with hot water and stir until smooth--add in the salt,garlic,lemon juice,and honey--may have to add more or less salt depending on your tastes (I didn't measure-I just added until we liked it)--stir until smooth--when satisfied with the taste,squeeze a little lemon juice on top and sprinkle a little cumin on top for presentation also.

The tahini sauce was served over both the rice and the kofta. I'm going to have to play around with my tahini sauce recipe. It was my first time making it at home,and it was good but I'm not satisfied.

My husband and son with my husband's mother Sallie