Let me start off by telling you that Mark Bittman has already changed my life. It was reading and trying recipes out of his book, How to Cook Everything that really taught me how to do most anything in the kitchen. The book is chock full of simple recipes made out of fewer ingredients, in simple preparations with more flavor than I had ever known. So, you may say I'm sort of a fan.
I knew this book came out a few years ago but somehow failed to bump it to the top of my reading list. That was a total loss on my part and I am sorry I waited. Food Matters: A Guide to Conscious Eating with More Than 75 Recipes is the most practical, pragmatic and easy to understand food book I have ever read. I highly recommend you read it. He really cuts to the chase in this book. Yes, local food is great. Yes, organics are usually a good thing. However, the most important thing is what food is making up the majority of our diet. Bittman announces loud and clear, what anyone reading the Word of Wisdom should know: plants are the answer.
Plants are the answer to the tune of 90% of our diet. Wow. I would really have to sit down to do the math to figure out the fraction pie of my diet. I will spare you and instead tell you what that means: whole unrefined grains, vegetables and fruits. We are not eating enough. So much so that as Bittman points out in the book- we get what we demand: the people want and eat meat and so that is what is being produced at an ever increasing rate. Our demand for plant based food is so low that IF we all were to eat the five servings a day of fruits and vegetables that the USDA recommends we wouldn't have enough fruit and vegetables to meet the demand; there isn't enough being grown, because we don't want it.
The book outlines what needs to change and how to do it. There are 75 recipes and lots of ideas of how to do it. And if this isn't enough for you I just found this to add to my birthday wishlist (anyone want to buy it for me?) The Food Matters Cookbook: 500 Revolutionary Recipes for Better Living. It is coming out in a week and a half: an entire cookbook dedicated to plant focused eating. And it is for everyone. You don't have to push meat totally off the plate, you just need to decrease it. And all of the recipes I have looked at so far seem fantastic. I can't wait to cook through them.
|I even pulled a simple idea tonight- Justin was out and the kids and I were alone for dinner so I quickly steamed some whole wheat couscous (read: boiled 1 1/4 cup of water in the microwave, added a dash of salt and 1 cup of couscous, covered and let it stand for 5 minutes) and followed directions to accessorize our basic grains. It was about as easy as pouring cold cereal and infinitely better on every level, kind of like my so-easy-that-I-am-embarrased-call-this-a-recipe for oatmeal.|
One more thing. If you have anytime at all this week please watch this TED Talk by Mark Bittman. It is really, really good and then pass it on. I think you'll want to.
More good things to come this week: I will profess my love of fresh mint. Stay tuned.
So have you read Food Matters?
Have you walked the TED talk?
Tell me what you thought.
Oh, and thanks for reading. I really like sharing all of this.