It hasn't really been easy to switch to a very Western/North-American diet to one that seems to flip a paradigm on its very head. However, baby steps are the way to go and I have found a few different cheats to just flip one or two ingredients on how I would typically make something and make it healthier.
First things first, I would like to wish my father, Greg Cannon of Greg Cannon Arts a very happy (if belated) 60th birthday. Those of you familiar with my Dad know a few things about him (sorry about this, Dad!)
He can fix anything. I mean that literally. And if he can't, then it probably couldn't be fixed in the first place.
He doesn't make the best food choices when presented with them. But that was a family thing and the way he and his brothers were raised to eat (sorry, Gramma!) and, by extension, the way I was taught to eat. Meat, potatoes (especially if French fries!) and a veggie as an afterthought.
He is an amazing artist. Seriously, go check out his website!
However, we're a little more concerned with point #2 on that list.
I have been trying to eat healthier and since I live with both my grandmother and my father, that is a challenge since they are very, very used to the way they eat and the way they shop for it. They both know there is something intrinsically wrong with the way they eat as we have every single diet/lifestyle related illness known to humanity running up and down our family, and at least two died early deaths due to either heart attack & stroke, or the complications thereof.
It's not a pattern I want to repeat.
So, since when we cook we have to share our meals to save on moolah, that means my diet is theirs and vice versa.
Normally, when this gets made it's an omelette. There's nothing wrong with an omelette--so long as you don't overload it with unhealthy add-ins like a crazy amount of bacon (not only a heart health no-no, but it's also one not found on the Mediterranean diet) or cheese.
There, I said it. Two big things that often get people to eat an omelette have to be nixed on most days.
But that doesn't mean the flavour has to go as well.
Instead of bacon (or salt!) and cheese, instead add the following:
Onion & garlic.
Any veggie, especially if it has been roasted or grilled the night before. There's something about that crispy flavour of a grilled veggie in this that just makes it. In what I've shown you, I used broccoli that was grilled the night before in garlic and olive oil and green pepper.
Herbs - especially the flavourful ones that also add colour, such as marjoram, thyme, basil or oregano (or all of them, who am I to judge?).
And, for more colour, a good hit of paprika... or red pepper powder if you can take that heat. My Dad and I can, as can my grandmother, so I often add a dual hit of paprika and red pepper.
You can use cheese but use it sparingly (maybe throw it in once or twice a week). Bacon can be an option, but don't use alot, and cut off as much fat as you can off it, and drain it well... and then only eat that bacon once or twice a month.
I like to throw these into an olive oil brushed muffin tin with no crust, and straight into the oven. After the egg cooks completely, you get these bundles of protein and fiber goodness.
You can add cheese, but use it sparingly (maybe throw it in once or twice a week). Bacon can be an option, but don't use alot, and cut off as much fat as you can off it, and drain it well... and then only eat that bacon once or twice a month., by the way, I drink black with a stick of cinnamon to kill the bitterness without the sugar from either... well... sugar or milk/cream).
The rest of my family ate these with the roasted potatoes I made, and I did help myself to one or two bits of them, and the roasted potatoes are also a sneaky switch up.
Instead of being fried, the potatoes were baked, whole, until cooked through. And then, once cooled, I cut them into bite sized pieces, tossed them in virgin olive oil (*I reserve my Extra Virgin Olive Oil - EVOO - for salads and things not cooked at high heat), the same spice mix as the eggs, plus some large chunks of garlic and onion, and baked until heated through and the garlic and onions were cooked.
Healthy - and not one person could resist either choice. The potatoes (since I made lots) will freeze well and can be used later in the week since, on this Way of Eating, you don't want to load up with tons of carbs unless you are very, very physically active. If my father was still welding and not retired, I wouldn't be saving all of them. A good bowlful would be packed into his lunch. But since he's retired and not physically active anymore, he is following my diet.
And so is Gramma, since she isn't physically active or taking care of a farm anymore - or chasing three boys and a girl.
Normally, for breakfast on a "Sunday" (*my Monday's are treated as Sunday because of my work schedule) we would have the very, very carb heavy and high gyclemic index food of waffles or pancakes with loads of bacon and maple syrup. Sure, sounds great, but for three people who are not physically active on a regular day-to-day (I go to the gym and work out, but my job isn't physically active enough for loads of carbs) this is a huge dietary no-no.
This substitute packs more flavour, and more useful energy and fiber, without hitting us with what we shouldn't be eating.
Now, I wonder what I can do to make suppers more MD compliant without them really noticing...