Friday, April 24, 2015

"u" is for unknown (new) foods

Since I've been eating to nourish my body, one of the important things that I've learned is that variety is one key to healthier eating. I find that I often get stuck in a "food rut," having the same foods over and over (breakfast is especially prone to this). In order to break out of my "rut," I determined that I would try some new produce item at least once a month. (I started trying something new every time I went to the store, but sometimes I'm in a rush! So, I gave myself a break.)

Here is a list (in no particular order) of things that I have tried over the last 18 months, along with what I think of each item. Some of them I have tried sometime in my life, but they never became part of my "repertoire."

  • Fennel (love it in smoothies, can blend the tops as well as the bulb)
  • Kiwi (eat it with a spoon, yum)
  • Bean sprouts (love the added crunch in my salads, but goes bad quickly in the fridge)
  • Bok Choy and Napa cabbage (although regular cabbage seems boring to me, I really like these two varieties)
  • Lemons and Limes (I tried a head-to-head test again just this week, and I really do prefer limes, but if unavailable lemons will do. I can't imagine a day now without a sour citrus wake up!)
  • Fresh Cherries (can't get enough of them; my Mom never liked them, so they weren't a part of our household growing up, but now I'm making up for lost time!)
  • Brussels sprouts (the darling of the 'healthy food' trend these days, but I really don't care for them. I've tried roasting, sautéing, and slaw but I do not like them. Oh, well)
  • Mangoes (love them in smoothies, not to just eat plain)
  • Papaya (doesn't really taste like anything... maybe it wasn't in season? I will try again)
  • Pomegranate (love them! Especially in smoothies, so I don't have to deal with seeds. Getting the seeds out used to be a problem, but check here for some easy ways to open one. I prefer method #4 - whacking it with a spoon!)
    Carrots (I've been eating carrots my whole life, but I only recently discovered carrot chips - where they have cut the raw carrot so that it looks like a thick, wavy, potato chip. I eat them with sandwiches.)
  • Avocados (I've already sung the praise of avocados; love them!)
  • Frozen Fruit (only ever used in pies and crumbles before; now they're in my yogurt in the mornings)
  • Plain Greek Yogurt (needs a little sweeting - I've been using Stevia lately - but great protein and yummy with fruits and nuts)
  • Beets (I just don't like them, except for the green tops. Like Brussels sprouts, I've tried them roasted, sautéed, raw, and in smoothies, and they just aren't my favorite. From time to time I make myself buy a bunch and include in smoothies, just because they are so healthful. But not yummy)
    Turmeric Root
  • Turmeric and Ginger Root (I buy both fresh and put them in my smoothies. Good for fighting inflammation. Ginger is a little stronger "kick;' Turmeric turns everything golden yellow. I like them both!)
  • Other grains, like Farro, Quinoa, Wheat Berries (nice change from rice, but none of them will be my favorite. Better to cook them in broth.)
Some things I have yet to try:
  • Jicama (I've seen it on cooking shows, and my local grocer has it. Time to try!)
  • Star fruit (isn't it sour? Now that I like sour more, I may like it)
  • Broccolini (I love broccoli, so I'm not sure why I've never tried broccolini... but I will!)
  • Daikon Radish (it looks intimidating, plus I'm not crazy about regular radishes, but I understand that these are milder... so it's on the list to try)
  • Miso (seen it on cooking shows, and I understand it's great, but I can't figure out what to use it in - except maybe soup?)
  • Daikon Radish
  • Bone broth (I've heard a lot about its nutritional qualities lately, and it's not hard to make, so I want to try.)
I hope that this list has given you some ideas of unknown foods to try. How about you? Have you tried some new foods lately? What did you think? Give me some more ideas of things to try!

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