Balance In The Kitchen

I have learned that I enjoy cooking. I find it fascinating when I can duplicate something I saw on “Food Network” and add my own flavor to the recipe (and it comes out pretty tasty–amazing!).   I now shop my pantry. I try to use what I have to extend my food options; I don’t have to eat meat every day.  Pasta, rice, potatoes, beans and fresh/frozen vegetables (never can–too much salt) can expand my daily menu options without busting my budget.  I understand the power of “tools” to make cooking easier and fun (e.g. I use my bread maker pretty regularly.  I love Pampered Chef and its many gadgets).  I consider myself a home chef.  A great thing to be during a recession!

The downside to this fascination with cooking is that I eat it forgetting (in many cases) portion control.  I have to taste while cooking to make sure that it is worthy of serving.  I eat it because I like it and when my children decide that they have had enough I become their human garbage can (I hate to waste it.  You know there are starving children in Africa).  Before I know it, my consumption of calories exceeds my daily recommendation. I have become so consumed with getting on top of “what’s for dinner” that I’ve become fatter than I like.  I exercise regularly but to combat my daily intake of calories I need to exercise more and be conscious of my portion sizes.  I do not have high blood pressure or diabetes. My doctor told me I have moderately high cholesterol but she wasn’t worried because my good fat (HDL) levels were high.  I don’t take any pills to counteract a disease.  I would like to keep it that way.

With this newly found consciousness, I must create a balance in my kitchen.  I have learned that in addition to saving money, time and the earth, I must create a healthy balance for the entire family.  I want to be able to share my love for food with my family and to teach healthy habits to my children too.