We finally get to see the results of the kitchen re-org!
It should not have taken me nearly so long to post it. BUT, now that it is summer time I think I will have more time to blog. My daughter is officially out of a family-intensive school (parents have to be very involved) and so I feel like I suddenly have so much time. Good time to blog.
I have so much to say! This summer is so exciting! We've been making homemade nondairy ice cream (Costco is selling cuisinart ice cream makers for $24!!! They are normally about $50 on Amazon!) This ice cream maker is so simple, and the process is simple, too.
We've been using Dreena Burton's "Dreena Dazs," chapter from Let Them Eat Vegan! as a foundation for our ice cream recipes. We've made vanilla, mint chocolate chip, strawberry, and "rice" cream.
The rice cream didn't turn out too well, as my kids didn't like that one and Paul said it had kind of a burnt flavor. But they loved the other ones (all the ones from Dreena Burton's book, which shouldn't be too surprising)! We made a strawberry sauce to go with the strawberry ice cream (also from DB's LTEV) since strawberries are in season right now and are very inexpensive.
These two books are currently my absolute favorite; practically an obsession right now.
You would really enjoy "The Starch Solution." It is a good read, and Mary McDougall put her very best/favorite recipes in it. If your local library doesn't have it and you don't want to have to buy it, you can look here (click for the link) for a lot of Mary's recipes. Although the format is quite a bit harder to sift through, Mary does put a mark next to the recipes that are their favorites.
Our favorite from Starch Solution so far has been the Thai-Style Noodles. Oh my goodness! Delicious, and my kids gobble it up! I add a lot more Asian veggies than she calls for, including zucchini and Bok Choy to make it heartier and healthier. We serve it with Trader Joe's pre-made vegan "egg rolls," and fresh-cut pineapple.
I doubled the recipe last time so I could freeze the other half for a hectic day/evening. Or even just a day when I don't feel like cooking. Let me know if you are interested in my posting that recipe, and if you would like to see how I double and then freeze meals as a way for my family to enjoy fast, easy, convenience meals that are healthy.
Okay, on to the final product!
Isn't that pretty?! So much better than before.
These three pictures are all from that messy lazy susan that was supposed to be a so-called baking center. If you remember discussing the idea of having centers in your kitchen, well this is a much better baking center.
Often people imagine that when they give up meat and dairy they are limiting their food choices. I have often thought about this. A major reason that I had to re-organize my kitchen is because there is such a grand variety of whole plant foods. I had to clean things out to make room! I had to get new containers that would create more space so that I could fit all this stuff in my life. And I still discover new foods and food combinations every day.
Here is an example of what these containers did to open up space in my kitchen. This was my other lazy susan that was stuffed full before the re-org.
You can see how much space I have now. I'm sure I will find a way to fill it up!
This is my dinner center.
In it I include all of my beans, whole grains, legumes, etc. This is only a sampling of the grains and legumes I have. The bulk of these foods are downstairs in a more long-term storage area, and also in my freezer. The amount of plant foods, the variety, is incredible, wouldn't you agree?
It's amazing how we can go for so many years of our lives, cooking the same things over and over again, like beef, chicken, and eggs with cheese, and losing out on nature's variety. I never knew about the amazing quality of lentils, mushrooms, fennel, Kale, etc. And now they are an integral part of my life. Do you have a specific food that you never knew about before, but are now totally in love with? My all time fav has got to be kale. I think I eat it every day now.
This is a closer look at some of the OXO containers I used to contain my grains.
Some of the grains I have here are quinoa, rainbow quinoa, green lentils, french lentils, red lentils, steel cut oats, long grain brown rice, bulgur, corn, etc.
And now I have an organized spice cupboard!
Spices are so important for whole foods. When trying to avoid oils and reduce sugars, spices become essential for flavor. And it's so fun! There are tons of different kinds. Don't ask me why this pic got posted so weird. I made sure it was on CENTER, and loaded it multiple times. Sorry...not working!
Have you had to clear out space in your cupboards to enjoy new foods?