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One of my greatest joys as a blogger is sharing real food with you, my sweet friends. While most of our time is spent gathered in the kitchen taste-testing and sharing in the rich-flavor of this lifestyle, I often forget to share the basics. And let’s face it, real food is exactly that, basic. Nothing fancy, just simple and real. Basic at its finest.
When our family first made the real food switch (you can read our story here), ditching the boxed cereal and frozen pastries seemed daunting. What would we eat? How would we survive? Did I need to enroll in culinary school? Returning to the days of great-grandma’s scratch cooking seemed way too complicated.
Giving up the boxed cereal and creepy-colored pastries was one of the best choices our family ever made. Today, we live a simpler life. One of backyard chickens, Saturday morning markets, and homemade bread. No longer is our medicine cabinet littered with drugs for every ailment. Food is our medicine and has brought joy and celebration to our table.
Come join me, friend. Give up the fake substances our society calls “food”, and embrace real and simple. You don’t need fancy “super foods” or a culinary degree. With a few practical steps anyone can successfully make the real food switch.
Five Simple Steps to Real Food:
1. Get Out of the Store: We’ve been fed a great lie in this country, food is only found in the grocery store. If you take a walk through a commercial grocery store, you will find very little real food. Once we remove ourselves from the big name grocery store we are forced to find farmer’s markets, local farms, food co-ops, and small town shops. I promise, they exist.
I’m amazed at the number of real food sources in my city. Resources I never knew existed until I walked away from my big conventional food store. Eatwild.com and localharvest.org also provide extensive information for finding local food in your area.
2. Change Your Thinking: “Don’t eat this, eat that! Butter? No way.” Food talk is everywhere today. We are obsessed with calorie counting, “super foods”, and miraculous protein powder. Embracing real food means a change in the way you think about food- redefining the what and why of eating. You can find my simple definition of real food here.
3. Celebrate Food: Real food is worth celebrating: the meat raised by the local farmer, the chicken bones turned into nourishing broth, the biscuits rolled out and baked, and the dinner made with simple, fresh ingredients. Real food isn’t about fear, but rather celebrating nourishment and beauty.
4. Get to Know Your Kitchen: You know the boxes of cookies, canned soup, and packaged mystery meat? They are not real. They must go. Real food means buying ingredients, and ingredients mean you’ll have to cook! It’s time to get to know your kitchen, get it dirty, and pile up the dishes. It’s time to learn how to make homemade biscuits and roast a whole chicken, then turn that chicken into nourishing broth. Will all this cooking take time? Absolutely. It must be a priority.
5. Stock Your Kitchen: All this cooking means you’ll need some kitchen tools. Don’t worry, I’m not talking about breaking the bank. With a few simple kitchen tools you can make just about anything. You can find my favorite kitchen tools here. Stocking the right ingredients is also important. With simple ingredients you can make anything from oatmeal to granola bars, a chicken dinner to homemade chicken broth and chicken noodle soup.