I want to wish you all a happy Valentine’s Day. I think it’s probably the one day where more people will touch their food than just fork it. On this day more people go to their kitchens and cook a meal for the one they love.
They are either preparing a special meal for themselves and maybe someone else too. Maybe it includes chocolate and strawberries where you have to pick them up to eat or serve them. Maybe you’re preparing a nice piece of fish with broiled asparagus or seafood ravioli with a lobster sauce (requested in my house). Whatever it is, as long as you are starting with real food, single ingredient items, well you’ll be touching your food. In the case of the strawberries also licking your fingers.
This my friends is a wonderful thing. Get to know what you are eating. How does it feel? What does it smell like? How is it best prepared? This will go a long way to better health and a better relationship. Think about it. Would you be all excited if your special someone opened a frozen TV dinner and served that to you? Even a box of takeout says you’re only eating because they deliver. That does not say I love you. Not to them or to yourself.
Now I’m sure some folks may take offense about this, but I have no problem telling you what I believe in my heart. Get into the kitchen and touch your food. Cook real food. Food without labels. Not frozen meals unless they are your leftovers made into fast meals. Try to get as much organic if you can but if you are picking and choosing, always check the Dirty Dozen and the Clean 15 Lists from EWG. These are foods that absorb the most toxins from pesticides or the least. I really don’t think a plate full of pesticides says I love you either.
If you are looking for ideas for a holiday meal, visit my category, Holiday Menu. If you’re looking to learn some new cooking skills or even how to prepare a specific recipe, check out Rouxbe cooking school videos online (affiliate). More about this soon but just to let you know they are offering $100 off a year long plan for a full access pass. If you still need a gift today check it out before midnight tonight. Also check your local papers for cooking classes near you and go take one. Grab that special someone and even do it together.
When buying meats look for grass fed beef, no antibiotics or hormones and with fish look for wild caught. Just be careful of those trick words like Natural, it really doesn’t mean anything. Look for locally grown or raised and support your neighbors.
Today, and hopefully for the rest of your life, please love yourself and those you feed with healthy foods. Cook for them, taste how good these wonderful meals you make with fresh ingredients really are. Touch your food and don’t just say fork it!
My gift to you today is a free lesson on How to Handle a Chef’s Knife. This is key to getting into the kitchen and cooking. Just click the video and enjoy! Much love- Diane
Perfect post for today! Love the photo. That says it all!
My knife and giant chopping block are my favorite kitchen essentials. As for "real" food, that's also a kitchen essential. Yes, play with your food. That's my motto!
Happy Valentine's Day!
Melissa I LOVE your motto! Sending you hugs.
Great post, Diane! I am definitely all about touching my food! Of course, we have to remember that a chicken nugget, while touched and not forked, still does not count as "touchable", loveable food! LOL Happy Valentine's Day – I hope you get to enjoy touchable, real food with the one you love.
Alta great point. I should have put a disclaimer on there. Only touch the real food, step away from the ones with pink slime. Sending you hugs.
Amen. And I've taken a few of the Rouxbe classes and learned some things I never knew.
Thank you Wendy! I am totally digging those classes. They are so fun to watch. I have to get into some of the recipe ones but for now it's great to review some things I knew and learn some new things. Thank you for reminding me of their classes!
Diane – thanks for this reminder and great tips on how to incorporate more REAL food into our lives! I LOVE my chef's knife! Aside from cutting onions, I truly enjoy the 'slicing and dicing' part of cooking! Thanks for the tip on Rouxbe and the free video too! Good Stuff!! Keep up the good work of spreading the word about REAL, WHOLE food!!
Happy Valentine's Day!
Thank you Ellen. I hope you enjoyed to video on using a chef's knife. I find even when we're used to it, it's nice to brush up on techniques.
Awesome post Diane, I def. agree with many of your points! And ditto Rouxbe, that site totally rocks – I love their lesson on wheat/gluten, so incredibly informative. Happy Valentine's Day!
Jenn I hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day . I too am loving Rouxbe.
Great post. Gets the message across with lots of love.
Thank you so much. So glad you stopped by.
Great post. I wish more people would get onboard and cook whole foods and buy less processed ones. Happy Valentine's Day to you.
Faith it's a process to get used to cooking for ourselves. I think the more you do it the easier it gets. I'm lucky I've been working on that since I was 2 years old. Let's keep helping people get into the kitchen.
Wonderful post Dianne! The world has enough fake and processed crap being consumed so to hear the genuine truth in an encouraging way with suggestions on how to improve is very welcomed. Its the lies and coverups about our food that's killing our nation. There's no better way to express love than being honest, especially if that special someone in your life is killing themselves slowly with food. So this post is a great way to show your love for your readers on this day. Thank you and keep it coming!
Thank you. I do love to cook and I really want to get people cooking more and more for themselves. It's so much power in the palm of our own hands.
I love touching my food, and I believe the more folks handle their food and work with it (slicing, dicing, etc.) that the more they appreciate it, thrive from it, and semi-intuitively know how to cook better. This is true for all ages, from the moment the little ones can safely be in the kitchen. You don't "get" what the ingredients like garlic, onion, etc. add to a recipe if you aren't working with them. You can't learn anything from packaged food and simply having the fork in hand. And food like strawberries, cut up fruit, and cut up veggies all go quickly when placed out for folks to graze. So much better than them grabbing packaged foods that taste "okay" and probably are not okay at all when you look at what is in them (at least what's shown on the label).
Shirley great points! I was in the kitchen with my mom since I was 2 and I am so thankful!
Love this post Diane. So important to remember that we should have a loving relationship with food…There is a song that comes to mind…" loving, touching, squeezin" . Its so much better with real food. Squeezing a box is no fun 🙂
Melanie you are so right about a loving relationship with our food. We all have a relationship with our food, but unfortunately sometimes it can get overlooked. Love the Journey song ref.
Yes!! I love playing with our food and love teaching my kids about how important it is to eat pure healthy foods. We actually were driving by a McDonald's the other day and there was a long line of cars in the drive thru and as we passed, my oldest said, "I feel bad for all of those people who don't know they are making themselves sick." LOL I almost started laughing and cheering at the same time when he said that. Diane, you did an awesome job getting your message across!! Love this post!!
Kim you have some lucky guys in your house and those kids are so darn smart. Can you get them to talk to a few adults, like the ones in that line. Teaching your kids about what is going into their bodies is one of the greatest gifts a mother can give their child. Thank you Kim.
Great post and Happy Valentine's Day to you!
Thank you Carol. Hope yours was sweet
Great post Diane, it took me back to my first Valentine's day with Mike (14 years ago). He invited me over with the tepid lure of a "Mike-cooked" meal. To make a long story short, after spending roughly 10 hours scrubbing his condo (cleaning was a once a year thing for him in his bachelor days), he was totally spent and picked up Subway sandwiches instead.
While it was sweet that he tried to "fumigate" his bachelor/dog pad for me, I'll acknowledge that I was disappointed that he didn't cook for me – even if it were a simply seasoned grilled chicken breast, baked potato and a salad. Nothing says "I love you" more than a meal cooked from the heart (even if it's burned down to something akin to a lump of coal).
Pre-celiac, I never used to think of food much beyond the addictive cravings of gluten, cheese (note I did not just say "dairy" as a whole), and all the other additives I had absolutely no knowledge of (like MSG).
Ever since the IFBC conference in Seattle…a lemon will never again be *just* a lemon to me…now, a lemon is a "firm yellow orb just begging for me to roll it in my hands and release it's fragrant juices…" 😀
Yeah, I'm addicted to food porn.
Happy Valentine's Day!!!
Heidi I'm guessing Mike's meals are a little better now than a picked up sandwich. If not let me know and I'll come teach that guy how to cook something!
I love touching my food. I'm a big proponent of it in fact. And no Valentine's Day is complete without chocolate. These days I'm leaning towards cacao instead of cocoa and cacao nibs instead of chocolate chips, though being a chocoholic, I wouldn't turn my nose up at anything chocolate, cacao or cocoa! And when you throw strawberries into the mix, well, all bets are off. As for the touching healthy foods, my absolute favorite would be massaging raw kale with avocados and then adding some himalayan pink salt and grape tomatoes and then using a fork to eat it. Touching and using a fork, both necessary for this recipe:).
Ellen I love the sound of that salad! I'm also with you on the chocolate.
I took the knife course and loved it Diane! Thanks 🙂
Alisa I'm glad you liked that course. Thank you for letting me know. They have a ton of courses on there. I'll have to work my way through them.