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My Blog Wants to Be a REAL Foodie When It Grows Up

on June 24 | in Recipes | by | with 16 Comments

Last week Melodie at Breastfeeding Moms Unite referred to me as a “Real Food Blogger” on her awesome post, Why I Think Going to Blog Her ’10 Would Be Like Going Back to High School.

There’s one crowd I really want into. My idea of the “cool crowd” but I’m really not sure if they’d accept me. Other than a choice few like Heather from The Mommypotamus and Alex from A Moderate Life I’m not sure if they accept me now. This would be the “real food” crowd. And I’m pretty sure at least some of them are just putting up with me because I do a good job of linking to their posts every week on my Vegetarian Foodie Fridays. See, I don’t eat meat and they do, so I think that they think (yes, this is so totally high school) I shouldn’t be allowed to hang with them because I’m doing my body a disservice. I disagree but I don’t make a big stink about it. They’re smart and know nutrition and that’s why I like them so much. And then my would-have-been, could-have-been vegan friends who I also think are pretty cool because they don’t eat dead animals don’t want to be my friend either (I’m just guessing) because vegetarians aren’t as pure as vegans – even though they think eating tofu is good for them and I know better.

It seems self-serving to post this (and maybe it is ; – ), but it got me thinking and since I read it I haven’t been able to get one question out of my head: Am I a real food blogger? Unless you consider breastmilk real food, I haven’t blogged about the subject in weeks.

Besides, just a few years ago my M.O. was to slap a hamburger patty on a plate (burned on the outside and raw on the inside, mind you) and call it dinner. I’m not like Jenny at Nourished Kitchen, who posts recipes so tantalizing I am almost always tempted to immediately hop in the car and get the ingredients I need to make it right now.

The truth is, I’d like to be a full-fledged Real Food blogger, but right now life is about finding balance. It’s about agreeing on a name for this baby before my water breaks, getting our house sold, finding a place to live, and relishing these last couple months with Katie before everything changes. So rather than perfect my own recipes, I am content (for now) with savoring recipes dreamed up by others.

Don’t get me wrong, I miss the opportunity to be creative in the kitchen . . . to satisfy my pregnant cravings with gusto and lots and lots of cheese. When I get back into that mode largely depends on when other stuff falls into place. The sooner the better, but for now I’d like to share with you some of my recent recipe obsessions.

Spinach, Caramelized Onions and Chévre Quiche with Potato Crust

I love this recipe from Nourished Kitchen because it takes a nourishing, meatless (aka frugal) meal and makes it easy. Quiches are an elegant step up from our weekly dinner omelette. Because this recipe doesn’t require making a dough crust, it’s simple too! Not to mention delicious. Did I mention we have almost polished off three of these in the past two days?

Just a few quick notes: Don’t worry about buying chévre. Using what you already have will save money and taste just as good. Also, I brushed the potato crust with a little oil to keep it from burning but as you can see it did a little. That’s why I’m adding this pie crust shield to my birthday wishlist.

Cherry Almond Coconut Crêpes

This recipe from Kitchen Stewardship is easy, delicious, beautiful, and grain free, too! I’m tucking this one into my “inexpensive dishes with zazzle” folder for when I really want to impress guests and stay in my budget. Yes, I said zazzle. There are so many variations with this recipe: We’ve used bananas, blueberries, strawberries, coconut milk, maple syrup and more. We’ve even used the crêpes to serve homemade bananas foster.

Baked Oatmeal With Dried Cranberries & Apricots

There are so many reasons I love this recipe from Nourished Kitchen. First, oatmeal is one of the most nourishing, least expensive breakfast foods around. Second, I can make a big batch of these and be done with breakfast for several days. And third, Katie loves them. On the mornings I have these on hand she doesn’t have to wait for me to whip something up and everything seems to go more smoothly. I will say, however, that if buttermilk pancakes and bacon are on the menu she’s more than happy to wait ; – )

There, I blogged about Real Food. I feel better now.

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16 Responses to My Blog Wants to Be a REAL Foodie When It Grows Up

  1. I want one of those pie crust shields! Very cool!
    All I can say is, YUM! I’m going to add these ingredients to my grocery list! Can’t wait to make ALL of it! Thank you!

    • Heather says:

      It’s so strange . . . so far my ENTIRE birthday list is comprised of kitchen gadgets. Unlike many women that would shoot their husbands for buying them a blender I wouldn’t mind one of those handheld ones that make smoothies a cinch.

  2. Jenny says:

    You did beautiful work with those two recipes! I love the potato crust on that quiche – and the baked oatmeal is my dad’s favorite recipe. I have to make it for him every time he comes for a visit. It’s funny about the “real food crowd” – I’m feeling *SO* out of touch lately because I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had an opportunity to really make the meaningful connections that blogging is all about – let alone cook new recipes. NK is looking a little slim lately – better get back to the kitchen. ;)

    • Heather says:

      Hi Jenny! I’m so thrilled you commented on my blog! It’s nice to hear that even you can get out of your rhythm once in awhile. Makes me feel better about still being on week 2 of your course despite my best efforts to find more time ; – )

  3. Melodie says:

    Aren’t potato crusts awesome? I’ve had my eyes on that crepe recipe from Kitchen Stewardship too. I’m happy for your reminder of it though. I need to go grocery shopping so maybe I’ll add a few of the ingredients for these on my list.
    I’m surprised you didn’t identify being a real food blogger! I know not many of your recent posts have been about food…Maybe that’s how I found you? Anyway, I’ve always thought of you as the type of blogger I’d like to be but generally don’t have the time to do well. Real food and nutrition, healthy organic lifestyle and attachment parenting with a good amount of thoughtful breastfeeding articles. Mm. What could be better? There isn’t much else to me. :) Thanks for the post Heather!

    • Heather says:

      Thanks, Melodie! I think I was blogging more about real food when we first met. Ultimately, I probably will put most of my focus there. After doing the math and realizing I will probably be continually nursing for at least 5.5 years I’m pretty sure food is going to continue to be one of my obsessions for awhile.

      With a baby on the way, though, the parenting-type stuff seems to be making its way onto my radar more than usual ; – )

  4. Whittney says:

    I think I need to give that oatmeal a try….

  5. Real food is anything that doesn’t have a list of ingredients on it before you cook it. Sure, grass-fed beef is better. And eggs from pastured hens. And organic is (probably … usually) better than non-organic.

    But if I got hung up on how much better my food could be, I wouldn’t be able to eat so much better than I used to. The most important word in that last sentence, by the way, was “better”. The way I eat is better than the way probably 95% of Americans eat.

    Are there people who eat better than I do? Of course. Do some of them set the bar for “real food” higher than what I make every day? Again, of course. And I’m okay with that.

    • Heather says:

      I agree, Drew. Each step I take in making more nourishing meals is very satisfying, but I don’t get hung up on what we’re “not doing” as often as I used to.

  6. Your crepes look beautiful! We just had those yesterday for breakfast b/c hubs is trying grain-free for a week as an experiment. I’m honored that you included one of my recipes in your post. My birthday wish list always looks like that, too – kitchen stuff! May God bless your new little one and grant you a safe delivery and easy labor! :) Katie

    • Heather says:

      Thank you, Katie! Kitchen items are added almost daily to my birthday wishlist, but I have to say nothing is more welcome in my kitchen than one of your recipes. My husband recently discovered he has a problem with wheat and I am scrambling to switch over to spelt and other grains. I love coconut flour as well for lighter stuff and I’m so grateful you’ve done the legwork of figuring out proportions and such. I’m such a fan and SO HONORED you commented on my blog!

  7. Kat says:

    I don’t think Real Food Blogs are all about recipes. I rarely post recipes and sometimes even post them in the recipe pages without giving them a proper blog post. I don’t necessarily search out other Real Food Blogs for recipes, but more for personal experiences, ok and some nice pictures :). What do people eat that they love. What foods do people choose to grow/raise themselves. What traditional foods have people rediscovered. What health problems have people overcome just by eating real food. I’m thankful for all the wonderful recipes out there and the time everyone takes to perfect them, but often I just want to hear how people are doing. I’m really interested as well in how women handle pregnancy, breastfeeding and raising kids on real food, so I will be following you very closely!

    Last year for my birthday I got stainless steel ice cube trays. Oh my goodness I was so excited! I think I use them 3-4 times a week, best present ever. This year I asked for stainless steel popsicle molds, a butcher block and big butcher knife. :)

    • Heather says:

      I love your thoughts on this, Kat. It really is more than recipes and photos (although I love the photos, too). Since I am the mother of a toddler with one on the way, reading real food blogs is my version of a world tour of foods. Although it may be years before I try genuine Italian aoli, but that hasn’t stopped me from developing a passion for it stateside. Where did I get that passion? Nourished Kitchen, of course!

      Sunday meal planning is one of my favorite times of the week. It’s my opportunity to get out there and explore the real food world. I’m probably more enthusiastic than most, but could you expect anything less from a mom that is currently pregnant, breastfeeding and raising her family on real food! I think not ; – )

  8. Mae says:

    You know, as silly as this sounds, I totally can get in on the “I’m a vegetarian that can’t get no respect!” lol. It’s a tough pickle to be in ;]

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