Friday, February 26, 2010

Top Five Favorite Things In My Kitchen

Part of healthy eating is cooking for yourself. And I don't mean popping a Healthy Choice entree in the microwave, I mean actually putting together a meal with fresh veggies and meat/soy, and cooking it on your own stove. It's something I've come to really enjoy. Not only does cooking for myself with the fresh stuff save me money (more on that in another blog), but it's fun to experiment with different ideas I have. I'm not a huge recipe person, I usually just come up with something that sounds like it *might* be good, and then throw stuff together. I figure if it tastes good, then I've succeeded. But in order to eat healthy, you have to cook healthy, and you have to have the tools to do that. These are my top five favorite things I use in my kitchen.

#5. An air popper. So, my old roommate had one of these little babies. You drop some popcorn kernels in the top, plug the sucker in, and about three minutes later have a big bowl of fresh popcorn. Speaking as someone who loves snacks, fresh popcorn is pretty much guilt-free when it comes to that after-dinner "I'm hungry but shouldn't eat a big meal" period. I typically throw on some salt and some butter spray. (Side note: the "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" spray is fat free, cholesterol free, it's practically calorie free. I don't know what they put in it, but it's pretty damn useful on popcorn, veggies, tons of stuff.) Luckily, my amazing roommate gave me my own for Christmas, so I am free to pop all the popcorn I want.

#4. A vegetable steamer. I love my little steamer. I put a little water in a pot, put some veggies in my little collapsable steamer, and put the steamer in the covered pot. A few minutes later, freshly steamed veggies. There are also pans you can buy that have a steamer built right in, but I got my steamer through Pampered Chef. Very useful!

#3. My Magic Bullet. I keep telling the world to get one of these, and no one listens!! Ok, that's not true, some people listen. The Magic Bullet, for those who don't know, is a smoothie genius. You dump fruit and yogurt or whatever you like in your smoothie in the individual cup. You screw on the blending tool, put the whole thing in the console, press down, and suddenly you have a single-serving smoothie in your hands. It's seriously outstanding. And really easy to clean up, too.

#2. A great set of knives. Cutting vegetables is a lot less frustrating if you invest in a set of knives that actually works. I'm lucky in that I inherited my awesome knives, but I highly recommend you get a good set if you don't have one. It speeds up the cooking process immensely.

#1. An awesome stir-fry pan. You need a pan that you can cram a lot of vegetables in, and cook without everything flying all over the stove every time you try to flip your veggies over. Something with high sides and a good non-stick coating. There is really nothing more important to healthy cooking than the ability to sautee' vegetables efficiently. I can't stress enough, there should really be vegetables incorporated into every meal. But I know that's not entirely possible, so you definitely want to make sure you have a big bunch of them with dinner. It leaves you feeling full, and stocks you with nutrients and vitamins that you absolutely NEED! So get a good pan, and start trying vegetables!

Check your kitchen... do you have any or all of these things? They certainly make my life happier! Next I'll be talking about shopping, and how I do my shopping to eat healthy AND save money.

until later...

A word to the wise ain't necessary. It's the stupid ones who need the advice." ~Bill Cosby

1 comment:

  1. I also can't live without my kitchen scale to weigh out my portions.