This blog entry is prompted by a couple of things:
1. a friend's unhappiness over being told that "that in order to be successful at losing weight and getting healthy she had to stop loving food."
2. a blog entry by someone who, at goal weight after having lost half their body weight, just can't understand why some people would insist on continuing to eat anything other than 'healthy' food (somewhat narrowly defined it seemed to me). She states, "I just can't believe that these women belong to this site and continue to harbor the bad habits that brought them here in the first place. The mindsets, and actions of these folks screams of their reluctance to make and maintain the necessary healthy habits that will ensure their success."
I'm an 'artist'... and my 'medium' is food, and all things related. I am an unrepentant 'foodie'... I have always been. I read cookbooks like they are novels. I examine the glossy picture pages with intense concentration. When I shop for groceries I sniff, caress, and exclaim with delight over just about everything that goes into my cart. Put me in a 'fresh air' market, and I feel as though I've died and gone to heaven. Very little excites me in the same way as rolling up my sleeves in the kitchen, and creating something especially enticing for the palate and senses. For me food is an experience... a DAILY event to be served up on the good dishes, with napkins and the 'good' cutlery (started this in my 'cooking for one, forever single' days)!
Also important to note, I've always eaten 'healthy' - little to no processed foods, little to no processed/refined sugar, only healthy fats, only complex carbohydrates, high fibre. I STILL got fat. So, in both of these instances I reply, "NO, IT ISN'T SO!!!" I don't think my, or anyone's, LOVE of food has to change. Certain elements of how I relate to food has to change, but food didn't make me fat. 'Fat' is a relatively recent development. More recently developed bad habits (the last five years)... 'treating' myself beyond reason, lack of portion control, mindless eating, neglecting balanced nutrition and neglecting to eat in a timely fashion, replacing other pleasures/interests with food because food was easier, replacing sleep with food, NOT MOVING in proportion to my eating... THESE things made me fat. NOT treating food with the utter joy, excitment and respect that I used to, got me here. Food (and ultimately my body) was just my unwitting (and I believe, unwilling) hostage.
So, I'm not going to stop eating pancakes (or most other things I've always eaten).... I won't eat them every day, they will be the healthiest pancakes I can make, they won't be sopping in butter and syrup, and I won't eat six at a sitting! I had two this past Sunday, with a large helping of fresh fruit and a drizzle of warm syrup. I won't have them again for a month, or so. The left-overs from this meal will last another 10 breakfasts for my 4 year old daughter... she prefers hers with a light 'icing' of peanut butter, and orange sections.
I was discussing these particular pancakes with another Spark, and since I was sharing the recipe with her, I decided to share it with all of you, too. The recipe comes from one of my favourite sets of cookbooks (I have all four). These women run a hunting and fishing lodge at the mouth of the Churchill River, Canada. Food doesn't get any better than this... it's simple, nutritious, family-style, and really GOOD, and for the most part, good for you.
APPLE PECAN PANCAKES
1.5 cups all-purpose flour *
.5 cup whole wheat flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
.5 tsp. salt
2 eggs, slightly beaten
.5 cup sour cream (or Mediterranean style yogurt)
2 cups milk
2 apples, cored and coarsely grated
(or 2 ripe but firm pears, or combination of the two)
.25 cup finely chopped pecans
* I've reduced the white flour by another half cup and added a half cup very finely chopped oatmeal (food processor) and a 2 tbsp. ground flax
1. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
2. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, whisk in the sour cream and the milk.
3. Pour the milk over the dry ingredients and beat until blended.
4. Fold in the pecans and grated fruit.
5. Pour by .25 cup measure onto a hot, greased griddle and cook until edges are dry and tops start to bubble. Flip and cook on the other side until golden brown.
MAKES: approximately 24, 4" pancakes
They are VERY filling so they go a LONG way! They also freeze, and re-warm extremely well! I hope you enjoy them.
'Icebergs & Belugas'
Webber's Northern Lodges Fourth Batch of Most Requested Recipes
by Helen Webber and Marie Woolsey
Helen Webber - Born in Churchill, Manitoba, to one of the first non-aboriginal families to settle in the area, Helen still lives in Churchill most of the time. Her husband, Doug, came to Churchill with the Navy, fell in love with the wilderness, and soon established Dymond Lake Air Services and Dymond Lake Outfitters. The construction of two lodges followed - Dymond Lake Hunting Lodge situated on Hudson Bay, north-west of Churchill, and North Knife Lake Fishing Lodge, in north central Manitoba. Helen has been totally involved in all projects, but her claim to fame is that she has been providing incredible meals at one or both Lodges for over 25 years - sometimes under primitive and difficult conditions - but more recently offering 5 star accommodation and simply the best the north has to offer.
Marie Woolsey - Born in Dundas, Ontario, Marie also felt the call of the wild. She married Gary, an Anglican priest-pilot, who whisked her off to remote communities in Northern Ontario and Manitoba. Very shortly after moving to Churchill, the Webbers and the Woolseys became fast friends, and from this friendship grew Marie's involvement in the lodges. She has been cooking with Helen, part-time since 1980, and even though she now resides in Calgary, Alberta, you will find her at the Fishing Lodge every June and at the Hunting Lodge each September. It has always been a team effort - each encouraging the other to experiment with new recipes in order to present their guests with the finest cuisine.
Amazon has the first three cookbooks, but not 'Icebergs & Belugas' I personally use the other three more... amazing soups, and easy breakfasts! And all the recipes adapt easily to substitutions and preferences. I've not ever had a recipe fail me.