It’s that time of year again when we all decide what we’re going to eat less of (chocolate, crisps, cookies… hey, I’m on the diet bandwagon with you and am practically drooling as I type). However, being the optimist that I am, I’ve decided to ditch the January blues and desperate sugar cravings and focus on the positive – foods that I can eat, will eat, and want to eat more of in 2013. These foods are all healthy, nutritious and when prepared properly, delicious, so I’m just as excited about them as I would be about a new new cake recipe.
Okay, I’m lying, but help a brother out and pretend to get excited with me.
As a vegetarian who has often been lax about proper nutrition, I am almost positive that I never get the correct amount of protein. I eat the occasional omelette and handful of nuts, as well as the usual Quorn and Linda McCartney substitutes, but I’ve decided that I’m 22 and it’s time to get a little more grown up with my protein efforts than a mound of veggie sausages and a dollop of ketchup. I’m aiming to incorporate fresh, natural, healthy sources of protein, so grain, beans, lentils and tofu, here I come.
I hold my hands up and confess – I’m a chili wimp. One big bite and I’m reaching for the water jug and gasping for a spoonful of yoghurt. I order ‘plain’ at Nandos (yes, I know, it’s shameful), and don’t even get me started on the pasta arrabiata at Jamie’s Italian. However, chili is a healthy, tasty, and metabolism boosting addition to most dishes, so 2013 is the year that I will break down the spice barrier, build up my resistance and get a little extra inner fire. If you want to send me your favourite chili based recipes, I’m all ears (and burning tongues!)
As a child, I declared that soup was not a proper meal, and was basically a glorified drink that you put in the microwave. As I got older, I learned to love soup’s winter warming charm, but I haven’t fully embraced it as a part of my weekly food vocabulary – which is foolish of me, because it’s quick, easy and ridiculously good for you. I was given my very own hand blender and a book full of recipes as a Christmas gift, and I intend to make full use of them. Expect to see soups and stews galore here from now on.
Anyone who knows me knows that pasta is my carb of choice. I don’t care if it’s mac and cheese, pasta bake, lasagna, cannelloni… I could eat a roasting tin of the stuff and then some in one sitting, so in honour of the New Year health kick I’ve decided to swap out my Italian vice for it’s thinner, healthier Asian cousin. My first port of call is to make a version of Pad Thai that doesn’t cost me 800 calories (I’m looking at you, Wagamama!)
I’m often guilty of buying a bunch of bananas under the pretense of a healthy eating plan, and then leaving them in the fruit bowl until they go brown enough to make my favourite banana bread recipe (which I will post for you eventually, because it’s utterly delicious). This year, I vow to buy a bunch of bananas and eat all of them them without any of the added sugar, butter, flour or golden syrup that I normally bastardize them with. For 2013, I’m getting my potassium the old school way.
What are your foodie resolutions for the year?