Thursday, February 16, 2017

Tips From This Spoonie: Food Prep

As spoonies, we're all different, but we share some things in common.  One is that our routines with medication and food can cost us time, energy and funds.  Necessity being the mother of invention, most of us have found ways to optimize the process.

Nutrition plays an enormous role in a spoonie's well being.  Working with a Functional Medicine doctor or a nutritionist can be helpful.  Fresh, organic vegetables and fruits benefit anyone, but especially us spoonies.  I try to buy mostly organic, but because of financial constraints, sometimes keep the "Dirty Dozen" list in mind when shopping for veggies.  This list rates vegetables on how unhealthy they are for us if not organic.  Those rated as "dirtiest" have pesticide absorption more than skin-deep, so cannot be adequately washed.  The link here, from EWG, actually lists the 48 dirtiest veggies.  I definitely don't want to add poisons to my system, so try to opt for organics for these.

Many spoonies don't have much energy to prepare healthy food.  Here's what I do to cut down on the "active" part of fresh veggie prep.  I use a series of large bowls.  In the sink, I fill a bowl with dirty veggies, water and a splash of white vinegar.  I let it soak for about 5 minutes while I tend to other tasks.  In the other sink I fill a second bowl with plain water.  I use this natural bristle brush to quickly wipe off the vegetables, one at a time, and any visible dirt will come right off.  Each vegetable then goes into the fresh water bath. This only takes a handful of seconds.  Finally, I pull the whole pile of veggies from the water bath and put them in a dry bowl where they are ready to chop.  The reason I pull them out of the water rather than draining them in a colander is that there is often still grit at the bottom of the bowl.  I work with gravity and keep the grit on the bottom.  Though I'm only actively scrubbing for seconds, the initial vinegar soak is very effective, and I find the veggies are much cleaner than just washing by hand under running water.

I keep this veggie brush in a drawer because more than one well-meaning family member has used former veg-brushes to scrub dirty dishes with detergent.  While I am sooooo grateful for any help in the kitchen, I could never think of those brushes again as clean with the chemicals from the soap and possibly dairy residue (I'm dairy-free).  It may not really matter, but it's my quirk, so I hide the brush.

Serendipitously, I discovered the little brush fits perfectly on the faucet handle for drying after I've used it.  While it's drying, I do rudely tell everyone not to touch it.  I don't ask for much, so they bear with me!  Then I hide it again.

As ideas come, I'll continue this "Tips From This Spoonie" series. #spoonie

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