Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Healthy Cooking

So, as a fan of The Biggest Loser I am "friends" with Jillian Michaels on facebook.  And apparently she's having some sort of healthy cruise.  She's asking for advice and wanted to know if anyone would be interested in healthy eating classes.  She got an overwhelming response (so far there are 74 comments and it was published 5 minutes ago).  All it has me doing is scratching my head.  Are there really people who do not understand how to cook healthy?  Seriously?  With all that the internet and google has to offer?  

So I'm thinking perhaps I should offer healthy eating classes, since what I seem to do naturally is perplexing to others.  I would guess the reality is they know it's not difficult, but it's also not what they're "craving" or it takes more time and they don't want to bother.  And I know that can come off as bitchy or sarcastic, but really, I'm being serious.  Healthy cooking is simple.  

My biggest advice is, if you don't know where it came from, you probably shouldn't eat it.  Some assume this is limiting, but the list of food categories to have on hand goes like this:
* Fruit
* Vegetables
* Fresh meat
* Seafood
* Grains and carbs (pasta, flour, oats, rice)
* Herbs and spices
* Salt
* Healthy fats and oils (olive oil, butter, hazelnut oil, sesame oil)
* Milk
* Yogurt
* Good cheese 
* Chocolate
* Sugar
* Beans

Now, understandably as much as I love Jillian, she and I have very different views on healthy foods.  I don't think butter, salt, sugar or cheese is the enemy unless we're talking about "I can't believe it's not butter", excessive salt usage, high fructose corn syrup, or highly processed cheese.  For cheese, my biggest rule of thumb is that if the ingredients list is more than 5 items, it's probably no good (unless you're eating a cheese that has lavender or coffee in it, but the cheese itself should have few ingredients).  

My maman thinks we eat healthy all the time, which with addictions to cheez-its is impossible (but their ingredient list is simple, so it could be least that's what I tell myself).  I also acknowledge that different people have different ideas of "healthy."  Probably because I don't think on it often.  I made pizza while my parents were here that had turkey kielbasa, onions, mushrooms, peppers and fresh mozzarella on a thin crust.  My maman saw it as healthy (she really liked it) whereas I just thought "tasty pizza that reminds me of Strada back home."  I made quiche, which I don't think qualifies as healthy with it's 12 pieces of bacon, cheese, eggs, and cream in a lard crust.  But I don't classify it as unhealthy either (the key is smaller portions).  

G and I have played around with the idea of doing cooking videos to post here and on youtube.  I'm surprisingly camera shy (my own voice on film freaks me out), but he thinks it might be fun.  And after hearing the outcry of people who think cooking healthy is complex, maybe I should?  What do you think?


  1. Do it! It's a great idea. What will you start with? Your quiche?

    It bugs me that people vilify butter, eggs and cream when they are natural foods but low fat margarine, "eggs" in a little milk carton and fat-free half and half are okay. Have the people who eat that stuff that ever read the labels?
    I eat what I want to - usually as fresh and natural as I can get it - and if it happens to be made with butter, like a croissant, then I just have a small one or half of a large.

  2. Go for it! I always enjoy seeing what you conjure up for meals - and I don't think anybody likes to hear their own voice, so I'm sure it's not as bad as you think!! :0)

  3. I think you should do it and moderation is key.

  4. I'm with Adrienne how she said it:)And with you, healthy cooking is simple.
    I think every women (includng me) that I've met say they don't like their voice on film. It gets a bit use to. Yes, go for it!!

  5. I would so watch your cooking show. I hope you do it! From your blog I think you and your husband would make excellent tv. Imagine your own reality show 'a young couple living the European lifestyle in America'. It needs to be pitched!

  6. I would love to see this either in written format or you tube! I think you are a talented home cook and it's nice to get new ideas.

  7. Thank you ladies! I think G and I are going to try it this weekend and see if I like it. I may even trill a bit like Julia Child (just a forewarning, I get a bit goofy in the kitchen.)