Monday, June 21, 2010

Green Peppered Potatoes

I found a picture of a dish similar to the one above in an Herb and Spice Companion book.  It looked REALLY good!  Especially because I LOVE potatoes with paprika.  There was no recipe attached so with the help of Xan, I threw something together.  It goes something like this:
Ingredients:
4 cut up potatoes
1 diced green pepper
1/2 diced onion
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
1-2 tsp paprika
Salt/pepper to taste

Boil the potatoes until they are almost soft all the way through.  In a separate frying pan, melt the butter or heat the olive oil depending on which you choose to use.  Saute the green peppers and onion for about 5-7 minutes.  Drain the potatoes and add those to the mix.  Sprinkle on the paprika, salt and pepper.  Cook until the potatoes are to the softness you want.  Don't go too soft or they start mashing up while stirring the pan.  Extra seasoning to taste.  Serve hot and enjoy!

Advice for the World's Worst Habit Keeper?

I am not a creature of habit, despite my enormous continuous effort to be one.  I'll come up with a system/schedule to get in all the things I care about in the day such as keeping the house clean, taking care of pets, scripture study, language study, crocheting, ect.    I'll be FANTASTIC for sometimes up to a week.  I feel energetic.  Things get done.  I find I have more time in a day than I would have believed.
And then...  A disruption to my schedule.  Sometimes they're really small like a short illness or a really good book that I can't put down.  Other times they're bigger, like a bad attitude that lasts 3-4 days and I do nothing but sit on the couch and the bare minimums.  At times, they're inevitable, like a spouse who wants to show me something when I'm "in my zone" and by the time he's done showing me whatever it was (a new frog he wants to get, a book he got from the library, his progress in the newest tank he's building, ect) I'm out of the zone and usually can't seem to get back in.   All it takes is one day, and sometimes just one moment, away from whichever system/schedule I'm using at the moment and POOF!  It's history.  My ADHD wins the battle and the focus just isn't there.
I've been without a successful system for about 2 weeks now and feel like I'm in a rut.  More often than not these past couple weeks, all I've wanted to do is crash on the couch when I get home.  Poor Xan hasn't had very good cooking recently because once I sit down... I'm done.  I can't seem to find the motivation to get back up to do more than make the simplest meal possible.
Does anyone have any advice for building habits to the world's worst habit keeper to help get me out of my rut?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Organic Meat Better for the Enviroment?

I was talking to a co-worker today about the pros and cons of organic meat, grass-fed cows, and GMO eating cows.  I was telling him that Xan and I wanted to find a middle ground.  Xan and I are not opposed to the cows being fed corn and we aren't really concerned about making sure the cows are eating all organic products.  We ARE opposed to the cows being fed beef and other animal by-products.  I wanted to find a meat supplier that wasn't organic, fed their cows some grass and some grain, but NO animal by-products.
He took me over to our meat selection and showed me our different types.
ORGANIC MEAT:  I found this section kind of ironically funny.  Did you know that many of the organic meats are coming from South America because they have large grasslands to allow their cattle to roam?  Where do those grasslands come from?  By burning down the Amazon forest... Does anyone else find that just a little bit funny?  Not the burning of the Amazon, but the fact that the organic meat isn't as fantastic as the consumers think.  Not all organic meat comes from South America but you might want to check the labels to find the origin of the meat.
FOOD YOU FEEL GOOD ABOUT:  Wegmans has a label they use on many of their products called "Food You Feel Good About."  I LOVE Wegmans for it since many of these items such as salad dressings, pasta sauces, chips, ect will be artificial preservative free.  :)  I learned today that their meat with this label means that there are no added hormones or anti-biotics and the cows are NOT fed animal by-products.  Basically, it has what I'm looking for without the snazzy organic label.  It is more expensive than regular meat but less expensive than organic.
REGULAR MEAT:  Hard to not buy since it is the cheapest.  But... these meats (poultry, pork, and beef) are more often fed animal by-products than not so I'm deciding to significantly decrease my purchases in this area.  Not so sure that I'm going to refuse to eat out at a restaurant occasionally just because they serve regular meat though.  My intolerance to artificial preservatives already limits my eating out consumption so I'm just going to continue my life in moderation.
LOCAL MEAT:  I didn't realize they had this section until today.  We have a small freezer across from our meat department that contains frozen meats from local farmers.  The prices are very similar to the Food You Feel Good About meats but maybe a tiny bit higher.  Still cheaper than organic and it is supporting local farmers.
Seriously, I had no idea I had this many options when it came to buying meats at a grocery store.

What Happened to Good Quality Documentaries???

Xan and I just signed up for Netflix this past week and we've both been soaking in all the documentaries that are available instantly right to our computers.  Xan has been going straight for all the animal shows and I have been watching a lot of documentaries about food.
I am really frustrated with the documentaries lately.  They are so BIASED!  I just finished watching one entitled Fed Up that I don't think had any credible representatives to argue the other side.  When I sit down to watch a documentary, I expect to be educated.  I want to walk away from it feeling like I learned something.  Instead, I feel like I have to go learn organic chemistry for myself so that I can understand what the other side has to say.
Does anyone else find media's trend to be overly biased frustrating?