The food I eat everyday
Some of my daily simple and fast meals.
Diets have no effect unless you also watch what you are eating in between. I don't do much dieting and prefer keep an eye on what I eat on a daily basis.
I was browsing here on Squidoo the other day and was impressed with the awesome number of recipes that I found.
Although a lot of the recipes seemed perfectly delicious, I quickly realized that I was eating very few of these these recipes regularly. This in turn made me understand that everyone has their own favorite foods. Why they prefer certain foods and dishes may be for any number of reasons such as taste, speed of cooking, availability of ingredients, cost, culture, religion, diets, etc.
Since I couldn't really find any of my own meals I decided to share examples of what I eat on a everyday basis. Since I am single I always try to make food that can be done in small single serve portions.
All images by me (except products or credited otherwise)
Different eating habits around the world
This book is unique. It visits a person in a new country every day for 80 days and shows their total food intake for the day including calorie amounts
This is a photojournalistic marathon and the book is full of fantastic images and story.
It ranges from the poorest to the wealthiest to the most active to what an astronaut east in a day aboard the space station.
Same pant size for 34 years
Doing this lens I realized I eat something between 5 and 7 times a day, although in small portions. Once in a while I might skip a cooked meal due to work, or having started the day late. Breakfast tends to be the same with coffee and bread, mainly coarse, and often sourdough. If I add cheese I do so without butter and vice-versa.
I drink 1 glass of red wine every other day and mostly water or lemonade at other times. I will have 3 -4 cups of strong coffee & milk during a day. I eat a lot of tomatoes (at least one a day) and quite a few bananas. And yes, that is me in the pic.
At first glance the week menu below might look like a lot of food but was born 1960 and I still fit in the same pant size as when i was 20 ... The trick? The portions are always small, very little salt, almost never a soda (although a beer gets downed now and then), lots of veggies, and being active.
I guess genetics helps. I've never had a muscular build (although I tried to increase mass with all the tricks when I was younger) but if I was eating, drinking and snacking the same stuff and amounts many of my friends are - I would probably gain weight pretty fast. Gaining weight for my type of person (who has low muscle mass ratio) is not recommended. So I eat what I eat :)
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Three good books about food.
I like Quinoa, but it isn't always easy to find creative uses for it (apart from cooking like rice). Good tips in this one.
The best part about certain foods is that you can have a lot of them!
If only want one health / lifestyle book, this is the one. Seriously.
My weekly menu example
This is an example of a recent meal. Diced chicken breast sauteed with some onion, curry, turmeric, ginger and Tabasco. I often add water in a lot of my cooking. Same here, the diced chicken was left to simmer while the rice / Quinoa mix got done. Served with some fresh veggies. There is a lot of chicken in there but it's lean breast pieces without skin - eat as much as you like. It looks dry, and it is. There is no fat added to any of this cooking and just a pinch of salt. Still, when you press half a lemon over it all, it ends up being a fabulous thing to eat!
The sample menu
This is what I eat during a week and my meals would be very similar with only slight seasonal variations during the year.
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, 1 loaf (approx size of palm) of coarse bread with butter
Lunch - Rice. Stir fried shrimp in a mix of mix of carrots, peas, tomato, etc
Midday snack - Coffee with milk, banana
Dinner - Rice. Fried fish (not deep fried) Cooked vegetables, salad
Evening snack - Tea, yogurt and cereal
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, 1 loaf of coarse bread with cheese (no butter)
Lunch - Spaghetti bolognese (ground meat or soy), fresh salad
Midday snack - Coffee with milk, crispbread, fruit
Dinner - Chicken and salad with broccoli or similar, 1 glass of red wine
Evening snack - Tea and biscuits
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, yogurt, banana
Lunch - Soup of any type, coarse bread, cheese
Midday snack - Coffee with milk, rice pudding, apple
Dinner - Potatoes, meat stew, 1 glass of red wine
Evening snack - Hot chocolate, crispbread and butter
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, coarse bread, cheese
Lunch - Pasta with tuna, cooked vegetables
Midday snack - Coffee with milk, crispbread
Dinner - Cooked fish and rice, salad
Evening snack - Tea, cheese, dried ham, crispbread
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, coarse bread, dried ham or salami
Lunch - Rice, fried egg, salad
Midday snack - Yogurt, banana
Dinner - Ragu: potato, leftovers (chicken, sausage, etc), diced vegetables and tomatoes. 1 glass of red wine
Evening snack - Tea, crispbread and butter
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, bread, dried ham or salami
Lunch - Pancakes, salad
Midday snack - Coffee with milk, rice pudding, apple
Dinner - Chicken with rice, cooked vegetables, 1 glass of red wine
Evening snack - Chocolate, candy, chips, etc
Breakfast - Coffee with milk, white bread, croissant, or similar
Brunch - Potatoes, Sausage, scrambled egg
Late afternoon - Coffee with milk, yogurt, cereal, fruit
Evening snack - 1 beer, crispbread, goat cheese, dried ham or similar
This is a actual record of what I ate and a pretty good example of what a average week menu might look like. Add to the above additional snacks now and then, but almost never hamburgers etc from the fast-food chains (maybe once a month). Some weeks i get bean-crazy and will have beans and chicken, beans and eggs, beans and rice, beans and whatever happens to be in the fridge :)
Sustainable food policy
I always choose organic, ecological, local food if it can be found in the store because it is healthier, but also to support the farmers who have decided to do things in a sustainable way (not always the easy way). I dislike throwing food away and when cooking I try hard not to make more than I will consume. If there are leftovers they go into the fridge and act as a starting base for a coming meal.
I enjoy food, but being single I try to keep my cooking simple and quick. Most of my meals take 10 - 20 minutes minutes to make.
Here is an example of what my food might look like.
This was lunch about a week ago and consists of fried fish on a bed of cooked vegetables stir fried in soy sauce.
The fish is probably Haddock Melanogrammus aeglefinus, or Coalfish Pollachius virens.
I often eat my food from a bowl. Practical, easy to scoop up and less dishes to wash. This here is chorizo made from ostrich meat(!) which i stumbled upon in the shop.
Diced pre-cooked potatoes, frozen peas and fresh tomatoes fried together with the sussage.
It looks a bit dry and dull in the pic but it came out just right. Served on a bed of raw carrots shreds and red beets. That ostrich chorizo was HOT!
Here is another fish meal. This is cooked Cod Gadus morhua, served with a mash of potatoes, green peas, fresh tomatoes and some green salad.
Cooking fish is quick and easy: a pan of water, salt, pepper and a couple of minutes boiling. Potato mash is also fast cooking - just mash-up cooked potatoes (freshly done or yesterday's batch from the fridge) in a warm pan with some vegetables. Add olive oil and a pinch of seasoning. Done!
A friend of mine has a couple of egg laying hens and this is one of those eggs, seasoned with bell pepper powder.
I warmed a diced potato together with a pesto-like frozen mix which includes red onion, olives and cottage cheese. Add to that a shaving of salami called Magnifico (which tastes great even though it is only 15% fat) and you have a nice 10 minute meal.
Served with crisp salad and tomato.
Freshly smoked salmon is available in almost all food stores. I buy a slice and warm it before serving. Once again, the pre-cooked potatoes from the fridge also make it into the pan together with yellow bell peppers and some fresh tomato, salt and lemon pepper.
This is healthy fast food which takes about 5 minutes to make!
This is one of my favorites - a hot and creamy tomato soup with chunky vegetables and any kind of protein from the fridge. Works like magic with shrimp, fish, chicken, and even pasta.
The spicy soup is bought as is in a single serve carton, just needs warming, and addition of vegetables etc. Awesome dish for cold spring evenings.
This might look like a curry but it is chicken fried with onions, garlic, a tablespoon of soy, a bit of ginger and a pinch of turmeric. Served with rice, slices of red pickled beets, and of course fresh tomato!
You almost can't see it in the pic but a tablespoon of bell pepper relish completes the meal which takes about 15 minutes to make. I have found that you can combine red beets with almost any type of food. Try it! Pickled beets have a earthy but fresh taste.
More soup! This is asparus soup which comes ready for warming. I gave it a boost with some pre-cooked fresh asparagus, dried tomatoes and a couple of slices of chicken from yesterday which can't be seen. In the end, it becomes something of a chunky-asparagus-soup. Served with a sprinkle of paprika powder, whole grain bread and raw carrots.
The glass contains lemonade made of water... and lemon. The whole point of lemonade is for it to be fresh, a bit sour and wake you up - so no sugar. Try it - it takes a week or two to wean yourself off the sugar in drinks!
A family member hunts and i got hold of some moose meat. Moose can be tender or tough but it is low-fat and nutritious. My brother suggested I do a ragu / stew meal (we call it kalops). So here is what I did.
Diced the moose meat, a teaspoon of olive oil in the pan and fried it for a short time with some garlic, salt and pepper and stirred in a teaspoon of soy sauce at the end. Added water, just enough so that the meat starts to float. Added diced carrots and onion and set to simmer real slow without lid. Check and stir once in a while. After about 20 minutes I added diced beans, cocktail tomatoes and white cabbage. Seasoned with paprika power, another drop of soy, and some garlic / tomato pesto I found in the fridge. Stir, let simmer for another 20 minutes while I set the rice cooker on. 45 minutes later, I couldn't wait no more so I served it my moose meal with rice and fresh vegetables :)
To make a real saucy stew I could have let the whole mix simmer for another hour. I turned out pretty good, although it could have benefited from some more spice, like bay leaf and allspice which I didn't have :) You can of course add more vegetables of choice into the stew for a complete meal. I prefer to keep the carbs separate with this kind of stew and mix on the plate.
Here is a recipe from food.com on "kalops".
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Doing the week menu made me see exactly how much bread I am eating. Quite a bit, at least 4 loafs of bread a day. Still, it isn't that much as each is at most the size of the palm of my hand, perhaps 1 cm high, and about 5 bites. The kind of bread differs though and may be soft, hard, coarse or white, although I prefer dark bread.
I live in Scandinavia and we have a hard, dry and pretty rough bread we call SpisbrÃ¶d, or KnÃ¤ckebrÃ¶d with about 17% fibres in it. I guess it translates more or less to crispbread.
Why I like dark bread? Better taste, and it keeps me going for longer without getting the munchies ;)
Sourdough baguettes are awesome and you can usually find both white and full-grain versions. If not - have a word with your local baker! KnÃ¤ckebrÃ¶d comes in many versions. The one in the pic above is one type which is very thin, dry and delicate and topped with linseed.
Laying on the baguette is perhaps the most popular type which is a bit tougher. The plain flat bread makes a great platform for everything from cheese to marinated salmon.
So what about your food?
Most of Your Daily Meals Are...
My Super Simple Fast Food
Making a omelet is not rocket science and the thing I like about it is that you can basically mix in anything to make it go from "fried eggs" to "omelet" :)
This is fast food, literally, which takes minutes to complete. A omelet is nutritional meal that can save the day when you run out of time or inspiration. Eggs keep very well in a fridge, so I make a routine of always having a couple stashed.
How to make an omelet.
Crack two eggs into a bowl. Chop half a small onion and any other ingredients you want. A pinch of salt, pepper and if you have it paprika powder. Add about half a cup of water - maybe a little less - and gently mix everything until the egg yolk is evenly distributed.
For this example the ingredients I included were onion, one diced one potato, just a bit of fresh tomato, and green asparagus. I pre-cooked and chopped these into the mix, leaving one aside for garnishing.
Warm up a small omelette pan and tip the mix in. Don't overdo it on the heat - let the mix sort of simmer and poke it here and there to get the watery parts cooked.
If you are lucky you will have a excellent non-stick pan to do this in. If you don't - get one and discover a world of no grease frying. Check out how easy my omelet lifts off the pan! This is when frying with 0 fat or oil added.
It is easy to adjust how much food you want it to be. Make a light omelet with mushrooms, or beef it up with more protein. Make every omelet an experiment and simply raid the fridge for leftovers (try adding bits of yesterday's chicken for an awesome treat!). Frozen shrimp, mushrooms, green peas, etc also make excellent omelet ingredients.
Here is what mine looked like on the plate. Yum!
All The Vitamins You Need - Say No To Synthetic Vitamins
Do we need vitamin supplements? A lot of people do and most of us probably benefit from the extra boost but do vitamins have to come in the form of a pill?
Must the vitamin goodness be composed of a synthetic cocktail of chemicals topped off with substance binders, artificial coloring and packaging... ?
Try the natural alternative!
Vitamins are available in all kinds of fruit and vegetables. The problem is getting enough fruit and vegetables into your body to actually make a supplemental difference. This is where a juicer comes in.
A couple of fruits and vegetables (broccoli or celery do wonders as juice ingredients, and yes - even tomatos!) fit into a refreshing glass. The resulting 100% natural vitamin kick tends to be so good that you may be tempted to have a glass with every meal. A juicer is the easiest and most natural way to give your kids what they need. Just remember that fruit is calorie-rich so a glass or two a day ought to be enough.
Drink as-is without adding sugar, salt or any other type of seasoning.
The Cuisine Art Juicer has a huge amount of positive reviews and is on the Amazon bestseller list.
A juicer gets the most out of fruits and vegetables. Get your daily vitamin boost the natural way without any additives and as fresh as it gets.
DIY vitamins is a 3 minute process and tastes great - try it!
A 5 Minute Lunch Recipe
Eggs are a good staple food. They are nutritionally good, easy to make in all sorts of ways and they keep well in or out of the fridge.
This is another of my recent really quick meals - almost as speedy as fast-food but without the negatives. I used a nonstick frying pan so 0 fat added to make it.
I warmed a mix of a couple of yesterdays potatoes, onion, a diced tomato and green peas. Fried 2 eggs with a bunch of seasoning. Served with one large raw carrot and a bit of coleslaw. And yes, can't live without ketchup can we? :)
Fat-free cooking but your body needs fat to function properly. The eggs contain a bit, coleslaw also a bit but not enough. So I poured olive oil over the carrots. The good part of not frying in it is that the oil retains all the beneficial factors since is unheated.
On the side, a big glass of water with half a pressed lemon and a dark slice of bread with cheese. All in all, a 5 minute job which turned into a excellent meal.
The food you eat affects your life quality
I always try to make my food with as little fat as possible but making a good roast or frying something without a lot of fat - and keeping it tasty - is pretty difficult. My latest low-fat weapon in the kitchen is a IR cooker. Check my lens about infrared cookers for more info.