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Cook w/THIS, not THAT

Updated: Jan 6, 2021

Happy, healthy, hopeful new year to you, friends. First, just let me say, give yourself a pat on the back — you made it, alive and kicking, through 2020! Phew. AND I am so inspired to hear how so many are committing to eating, cooking, and living better in 2021!

I love seeing posts from friends and family who are eating more whole, fresh foods at home, and even encouraging their kids to get creative in the kitchen (it can be messy, but it truly sets them up to be healthy eaters for life) - way to go!! 👍👍

That being said, I feel a responsibility to my community to make sure that YOU have the best knowledge about eating well. Unfortunatemy, a lot of companies are poised to take advantage of your good intentions in order to make a profit, and surprise, surprise, they don’t actually care about you or your family’s wellbeing. One example I see springing up is the one pot/one pan meal racket.

This is not a new idea, and there is nothing magical about those fancy packets that promise a “healthy and delicious” meal in a 1/2 hour. Trust me, I get it, we are all busy and want to stretch our time and our food dollar to put decent grub on the table, but please don’t be scammed! Grandmas have been throwing odds and ends into a pot and making it taste good since the Depression and long before. Then along came big food business and Hamburger Helper - yay. I don’t think that anyone today would argue that that was good for us, but the quick meals being marketed as healthy today have a long way to go before they will earn my approval. Yes, it’s wonderful that more people are venturing into the produce aisle, but trust me, you don’t need a packet from Kraft or McCormick to get that chicken and veggies to taste amazing. Here’s what you are buying (first 4 ingredients in One Sheet Pan ”Farmers Market” seasoning packet): garlic, onion, SALT, SUGAR. 7th ingredient: corn maltodextrin (fancy word ford for GMO CORN STARCH). 10th ingredient: guar arabic. 12th ingredient: silicon dioxide (that’s the stuff in the “do not eat” packets that come in your sneaker box). And don’t forget, corn syrup and several gluten-containing additives...Wait, why are there so many ingredients in this list that aren’t even spices? Hmm. Good question. Answer: they are fillers and shelf-life extenders to increase profit margins. YES, use one pan, yes coat with olive oil, yes cut up fresh protein and veg - LOVE IT! Bake at 350 for 30 mins - it will be delicious as-is, or add your own fresh onions, garlic, and/or organic seasonings (not irradiated and free from pesticide residues that have been proven to be harmful to developing and aging brains). A little S&P. If you want to get a little fancy, top with some fresh parsley.

Cooking with spices has extensive health benefits, but newbie chefs can feel intimidated (which seasoning goes with what food?) Well, boldness and creativity is key, but I think these organic spice blends from FreshJax are a great value and an easy way to take the leap into flavorful, fresh food.

I love that they donate a meal to a hungry child for every box sold. 🤗❤️❤️ That‘s it for now, folks! Keep taking those nourishing steps, and I’ll be here to provide you with truthful information and the encouragement (we all) need. Hope to see you tomorrow night for more ideas for incorporating herbs & spices to put some

zing into your meals and your immune system. Be well!

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