You know how every now and then you can't quite get your act together to plan and prepare and shop for a nutritious meal, and so you think: "screw it, I'll just see what I've got in the fridge?" And so you pull out maybe some grapes and cheese and bread and a leftover chicken drumstick and maybe some cut-up vegetables and dip, and you take all these snacks and throw them on a plate and say, "voila: dinner!"
OK, maybe you don't. But I do, and to stretch the analogy reeaaaaly far, that's sort of what today's post is. I just have some random things to say about various foods, and rather than think and plan and come up with a coherent
Note: viewer discretion advised. One of the treats I will confess to eating will leave you SHOCKED and AMAZED that any health blogger, even one named Crabby McSlacker, could seriously recommend it.
The Curious Case of The Irresistible Almond Butter
So it wasn't that long ago that I wrote a post about portion control in which I mentioned I sometimes enjoy peanut butter or almond butter sandwiches. (With honey, bananas, and a big glass of milk).
And sure, I'd noticed I was starting to eat these sandwiches more frequently. I just assumed that, as happens with a lot of food items, my cravings were a "phase." I often go through periods when a certain food appeals to me a whole heck of a lot. I eat it like crazy, then... phhhhttt! I don't feel like it anymore for a long time.
But it's been months now that I've been totally obsessed with peanut butter and almond butter sandwiches! Well, I don't write poetry to them, or sneak out of bed at 2 am to have a rendezvous or anything. But I do seem to require one pretty much every day.
What is UP with that? Has a similar food obsession ever happened to anyone else? Is there a cure?
And it didn't help that a few weeks ago I got an email on behalf of Justin's Nut Butters saying: wanna try some samples of our portable peanut butter and almond butter squeeze packs? They come plain or in flavors.
Normally, in a non-nut-butter-obsessed time of my life, I'd remember that accepting free stuff to eat means I eventually have to write a review of said free stuff, which I never actually feel like doing. So I would have said no.
But, well, in a weak moment fueled by almond-butter-lust I said yes.
So these little portion controlled squeeze packs arrived, and they are indeed cute!
And they're convenient, especially if you're going somewhere where hauling an entire jar of peanut butter around might not be practical. The packs are also portion controlled--there are little 100 calorie packs and bigger 180 calorie ones.
As to the flavors, I have to admit I was skeptical. I thought: almond butter should come in one flavor, almond. But the Almond/Maple and the Honey/Peanut varieties? Both tasty! The maple, in particular, could have easily been gross and fakey and disgusting, but instead, it was subtle and pleasant and not overly sweet. The peanut butter also comes in cinnamon flavor, which seemed to me a really bad idea. Sure enough, I tried it, and for me--yuck. Those are two flavors that are both lovely, but not together. Others of you may be more open-minded about that.
Anyway, I give Justin and his Peanut and Almond Butter packs two sticky thumbs up!
Easy Tasty Guacamole Recipe
I love guacamole, and it's one of those foods that tastes too delicious to be good for you. It's like the Nutrition Gods weren't paying attention when they invented avocados: wait, these things have fiber and antioxidants and potassium and folate and oleic acid? They should be all stringy and gross and bitter! What were we thinking, how did they end up so yummy and creamy?
Anyway, the trick to easy and tasty guacamole: have access to good salsa.
If you can get a container of good fresh salsa from your grocery store deli or local Mexican place, the guacamole work is all done for you!
Just mash up avocados, and gradually add salsa and garlic salt until it it tastes wonderful.
You'd think you'd need fresh garlic (and it's probably better for you) but garlic salt seems to work just fine.
Note: this is eat-at-home guacamole; it turns brown pretty fast. If you want take-to-the-potluck guacamole, you might want to squeeze some lemon or lime in there too.
Ever feel like just a little something sweet, but know that you need to be limiting the amount of sugar and butter and white flour and bad fats you eat?
There are, of course, virtuous ways to handle that dilemma: just say no. Or have fruit. Or eat some anti-oxidant-packed dark chocolate, the healthy 95% kind that tastes as bitter as 3 day old coffee grounds.
The whole 100 calorie pack industry exists for just this reason, for damage control, but somehow these never work for me--they're too small for 100 calories, and they remind me of my junky treats from my youth without actually tasting as good.
So my new cheat option, when it's not yet time for a real splurge? Tiny little vanilla mini-meringues from Trader Joes.
These things are so silly! Each one is only about the size of a peanut M&M. And there is nothing nutritionally "good" about them, other than that, to my knowledge, they don't contain poison. But they are only 1 calorie apiece. One calorie! Nothing with actual sugar in it is ever one calorie!
So with my immature toddler brain, quite easily fooled on matters of portion control, I can have like 25 or 30 sweet crunchy meringue thingies and feel like I've had "dessert." (Note: they must be eaten One at a Time to achieve this fake-out effect). Plus, if I have them along with a nice healthy cup of green tea, in my mind, the green tea virtue cancels out the tiny bit of meringue indulgence and it comes out even.
Anyone out there have any food obsessions, or any nifty snacks or treats you've discovered that you want to tell us about?