Canned food is not real food. At least that's what my Brazilian husband tells me. Canned beans are not really beans, but something to to be prodded with a fork and stared at. Then dump down the drain. I used to laugh at him, but you know what? Now I pretty much agree.
Have you tasted fresh beans compared to canned beans? WOW. So much difference. And the most interesting part? Canned beans don't go bad for a long time. Really. You can leave them in the fridge for a week and a half and they still smell normal. That can't be natural. Too many preservatives, I suppose. So we are 99% of the time can free.
Except for Campbell's. Don't take away my Campbell's.
Monday starts the month of October, and with that means in our house (and many houses around the country -- maybe even world) October Unprocessed is about to start, as well. As I shared last year at this time:
What is this, exactly? Well, according to the mastermind behind it, Andrew Wilder, it is a push to get people to stop and think about what they putting in their bodies. For the month of October, over 1,800 of us (yes, you read that correctly) have decided to put away packaged goods and go for it.
Of course, each person might consider something processed that another does not, so here is the working definition for unprocessed food that we are using for this challenge (taken from Andrew's blog, Eating Rules!).
What does that mean for us? Well, Ok, you can take away my Campbell's. And the Skippy. Condiments will be shelved for the month and I will be baking with raw sugar and unbleached flour. But really, it isn't that hard. See this bowl of soup? Beans, in the pressure cooker, with some garlic and fresh chicken stock (not Knorr, which I usually use). Add some kale, grill some fresh chicken sausage from Trader Joe's (no preservatives, just meat), and top with some Parmesan, also from TJ's (ingredients: milk, live bacteria, salt).
Easy. Fresh. Unprocessed.
Last year at this time I was terrified. TERRIFIED. How on earth was going to survive a month without processed foods?! But I did. And I thrived. I learned a lot, tried new things, and pretty much started a new way of eating year round, not just in October.
Not to mention, I lost some pudge around my belly. That was a completely unexpected result, but one that I will take gladly!
I have looked through my recipes from this year and have some great tasting and easy to make recipes that fit this bill, so I am going to be making a menu plan for each week for any of you brave enough to try October Unprocessed. The first weekly plan will be up tomorrow, so check back to prepare for the week. WE CAN DO IT, Friends!
Are you brave enough to join me? Come on, let's do it!
(To read through my experience last year, click HERE.)
Recipe adapted from Everyday Food, September 2012
YIELD: 8 servings PREP TIME: 15 minutes TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 20 minutes