Wednesday, September 5, 2012

New Focus

Hi Everyone! Its been a long time. Too long. But I have decided that I want a new focus for blogging. I may have an occasional rabbit trail, but I want to talk about food. My experience with food. I love food. There's very, very few things I really don't like. I grew up in the south and midwest. My mom was a decent cook and most of her meals were southern in nature. Meat, potatoes, rice, casseroles, tons of cheese, creamed anything, fried everything. Paula Deen's cooking just always seemed like normal cooking. I think I DID realize at some point that a whole stick of butter in everything was a bit over the top. But GOOD, gooey, creamy, crunchy food was just normal and enjoyable and eating was always to be enjoyable. The old saying Live to Eat or Eat to Live....we always fell on the Live to Eat side of that. As many mother/daughter relationships are, mine was never the best and trying to learn to cook from my mother just wasn't going to happen. I spent most of those more teachable moments out in the garage with my dad, handing him tools and talking cars. So when I got married, learning to cook became an interest. About that same time is when the Food Network and cable tv came into our lives. Up until then, The Galloping Gourmet was my only teacher. Maybe the occasional Julia Childs show. But she tended to fix things I would never be able to find in the middle of Kansas. I did learn to appreciate her greatly years later, if only for the fact that she didn't seem to be all wrapped up in convention and dirtied every plate and pan in her kitchen. A woman I could certinaly identify with. But I never had the crew to clean up after myself like she did. As my own son came along and my husband's career got off the ground, we moved around the country alot. We were exposed to different foods and ingredients. I often couldn't find my staples that I was used to. In Wisconsin, many had never heard of okra or zucchini. Dr. Pepper was completely off their radar! In Washington, we were exposed to the most amazing fresh produce. And Salmon. We really never ate more healthy or better than when we lived in Washington. And it wasn't painful. We lived. Speed ahead many years and our latest move has been to Michigan. About 6 months later, I suddenly found myself not able to eat MANY different foods. It took MONTHS and MONTHS of self-research to figure it all out. And after 6 yrs of dealing with this, I have been able to add some of those foods back into my diet, if not at a limited amount for some. My main problem seems to remain GLUTEN. And cross-contamination is a definite issue. I tell this part of my story to explain why all I ever knew about cooking has had to change and its not an easy fix. I still haven't figured much of it out. When foods like eggs and dairy were part of my no-no list, it was even harder! I really quit cooking alot and simply ate foods straight. It really challenged my LIVE TO EAT mentality. It was no longer fun. My husband and son were SO patient with me. It took me a couple of years to have a desire to try to figure out how to cook some of the dishes I was accustomed to in a way I could eat them. Some aren't quite the same, but..... . Some have been a complete failure. Others, not so much. We HAVE learned to appreciate whole foods more. Things don't NEED to be creamed, fried, casserolled or drenched in cheese all the time. You might say we're slow learners, but we get there. I want to share with you my attempts, my failures, my successes, new foods I've found and the decent glutenfree products I've stumbled on. I would LOVE comments and feedback. I hope this new focus will be as fun for you as I'm hoping it will be for me.

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