Go gourmet, go local

Looks like I owe you 2 resolutions today, since I didn’t post yesterday. Knew that would happen. But these 2 go together nicely, so it all works out.

#4 of 12 days of New Year’s Resolutions: Go gourmet. There’s this misconception out there that gourmet means complicated. I think some of the most elegant meals are the simplest. What I’m saying is that you don’t have to spend tons of time in the kitchen (or at the grocery store) to prepare good food. For example, last night I cooked chicken with 3 ingredients: cut up 1 pound of chicken breast, mix 3 tablespoons of soy sauce and 3 of light brown sugar in a pan and saut√© the chicken. Sprinkle with sesame seeds when it’s done, serve with edamame and udon or soba noodles. Simple, speedy, and satisfying. Btw, kids love it because it has a slightly sweet flavor. My favorite cooking magazines for keeping it simple yet gourmet are Bon Appetit and Cooking Light; get a subscription (they are always offering deals in the New Year) and make a notebook of recipes to have on hand for meal planning. I’ve got several of these notebooks full of food memories – I write down when and where and for whom by the special ones.

#5 of 12 days of New Year’s Resolutions: Go local. The less food items have to travel to get to you, the fresher they will be. And buying locally supports your area’s food producers and economy. So it’s a win-win situation. I know, winter is not the easiest time to do this, depending on where you live (ahem – Montana, for example)…but a little research goes a long way, so find out what’s available in your area. Many places have farmer’s markets year-round. At the grocery store, find out where your food comes from and choose what had to travel the least. Eat what’s in season, and enjoy the bounty that each time of year has to offer. For our holiday party this year, I worked with a caterer who cooks for the Bozeman Co-op and has a farm; it was delightful to come up with a menu that was in season and as locally-sourced as possible.

Tell me your tricks for eating healthy…