October 17, 2007

Soft Addictions and Playing with Food

So, in addition to my latest herbal tea addiction (which is still going strong, by the way!) I have also starting feeling the urge to bake again. Cool weather means it feels really good to stand next to a hot oven and watch batter and dough grow into something edible. Actually, the batter and dough are all quite edible in my mind…but we’re not supposed to encourage that sort of behavior, are we?

My kids love cornbread. I love cornbread mix where you just add water. Someday I’ll bake cornbread from scratch. Someday. That’s somewhere on the list of things to do in between ‘clip coupons and actually use them’ and ‘stop buying things I don’t actually need at the moment.’ You know all the things you think you’ll do when you grow up!

My kids also like beans. I made cornbread muffins and dropped spoonfuls of baked beans into the batter before I popped them in the oven. I tried it a couple of different ways to see how they would bake up the best. (Yes, the baked beans were from a can. Who do you think I am, Betty Freakin’ Crocker?) The girls loved them and they were much cleaner than having bowls of beans and cornbread crumbs to dispose of. I will definitely make something like that again. The rest of the batter was spooned into a mini muffin pan and we now have little bite-sized cornbread muffins.

The whole ‘Jessica Seinfeld cookbook thing’ has sort of got me thinking; maybe I should be trying to hide more good stuff in my kids’ diet. Now hiding beans in cornbread isn’t exactly any healthier of a choice nor is it really necessary. Not for my kids, anyway. But, I could easily steam and puree veggies and stash them in all sorts of things, couldn’t I? I do use oatmeal and wheat germ in my meatloaf, but who says I can’t add veggies too? We don’t have meatloaf too often around here, but we may have it more with the weather cooling down.

Cooler weather means crock-pots, chicken and dumplings, pot roast and anything else I can bake. Mmmmm….comfort foods! I guess that means I have to actually start buying more veggies, eh? I have a love/hate relationship with produce. I hate the commitment of it all. This stuff will go bad, and quickly sometimes. I am so much better off being able to buy something in a can or being able to stick it in the freezer until I need it. Or, until I remember I have it. I usually remember I have fresh tomatoes in the fridge when they are no longer fresh. Or even resembling tomatoes. Okay, so they have been known to stand up and tell me we’re out of milk! Since I don’t particularly care for most fruits and a lot of veggies anyhow, I only buy them because I know they are good for us. And that’s all the love I have for them. Fresh produce is just too much pressure for someone who likes to buy things in bulk and forget about needing them for a month or two.

I guess I remember I actually have veggies about as often as I remember to water my plants. Wait! That’s almost never! I can’t keep plants or fish alive to save my life! (Or theirs, I guess you could say!) Unless I do something on a very regular basis, I forget about. I honestly wonder if I could take some sort of medication to stay focused. I could use produce more regularly, feed my fish, water my plants…I might even resemble a grown-up!

But, do you think it could help me balance my checkbook any better?


Jessie said...

Oh please please PLEASE do not buy canned veggies. Some are ok, like ones that are out of season or unavailable fresh or frozen, but you really need to avoid buying canned produce, theres a whole chapter in my book about the scary things that are in canned goods. Frozen is fine, or buy fresh and freeze it, or only buy what you need. Canned veggies are really really bad for you, seriously.

Anonymous said...

I love the new steamer veggies from the freezer isle - steamed brocoli in a matter of 4.5 minutes and it tastes yummy too!

Now about that checkbook...

wildtomato said...

The beans on the cornbread remind me of the boy's horror stories about his babysitter adding cauliflower and broccoli to his morning waffles.