Hi! First, two announcements!
1. I made mayonnaise! From scratch! It was wild! (We’ll come back to this shortly).
2. I have a tumblr now! Follow me @diningattiffs!
Now I know it seems overkill to start a second blog, but that’s the thing.. I realize that in my enthusiasm for each topic and post, I DO tend to get a bit overkill, writing very, VERY long posts on this website. Eventually, I will turn some of my more popular posts (like resume and cover letter writing) into downloadable PDFs, but for now, just expect to find lengthy posts on diningattiffanys.com. I put a lot of time and planning into each of these posts — I truly want to be a helpful resource for my readers, so I keep it nice and thorough, letting all the flavors and textures develop into something I’m confident you can enjoy.
My tumblr will be the “microwaved” version of this website, with quick fixes of the Dining at Tiffany’s experience! Check it out!
|1. A bag of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Often doused in lemon juice and salsa. We all walked around with red fingers back then.|
|2. A big cup of Pepsi, sometimes Mountain Dew.|
For the month of October, I am joining thousands of individuals around the country (maybe world?) that have taken the pledge to eat only Unprocessed foods for one whole month. Let’s break that down a little.
You can read more about what constitutes “unprocessed” on the organizer’s website @eatingrules, but essentially what we’re doing is going back to eating REAL food, being able to identify the ingredients in our food as naturally grown and produced. What do I mean by that? Here’s an example. Here is what was in my “meal” of choice back in high school:
Flamin’ Hot Cheetos:
Enriched corn meal (corn meal, ferrous sulfate, niacin, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, and folic acid),
vegetable oil (contains one or more of the following: corn, soybean, or sunflower oil),
autolyzed yeast extract,
citric acid, artificial color (including red 40 lake, yellow 6 lake, yellow 6, yellow 5),
corn syrup solids,
partially hydrogenated soybean and cottonseed oil,
hydrolyzed soy protein,
cheddar cheese (cultured milk, salt, enzymes),
whey protein concentrate,
corn syrup solids,
nonfat milk solids,
high fructose corn syrup,
Gross. While admittedly SoVeryDelicious, I was basically devouring a bunch of questionable, chemically-created ingredients. Never would I ever in my conscious mind decide to have corn syrup solids/ red 40 and wash it down with caramel color for lunch. And honestly, would you?
Over the years I’ve learned a lot about where our food comes from and what’s in our food, and I’ve transitioned to mostly a natural food kitchen. Lots of healthy produce (mostly from the farmers market), whole grains, and no genetically-modified substances like high fructose corn syrup or monosodium glutamate (MSG). I can honestly tell you that I feel so much more lively than before, and a lot of things that usually ailed me (stomach issues, fatigue, etc.) have disappeared.
With October Unprocessed, I’ve been even more critical, reading the labels of everything I eat, or skipping that all together and sticking with whole foods that don’t require labels, like produce and bulk grains/nuts.
But of course, like anyone else, I crave flavorful, exciting food! I swear, I don’t eat like a rabbit!
For example, in the first week of October Unprocessed, I was having a 1:00am hankering for Spanish Tapas, especially potato tapas with aioli (Spanish mayonnaise!). Ordinarily, I’d just do quick food at a nearby Mexican food shop or In N Out, but that stuff is clearly processed. :'(.
Determined (more like, starving), I went for it.
The potatoes were very easy, I just chopped up some sweet potatoes and baby potatoes into cubes and shallow-fried them in olive oil until soft on the inside and crispy brown on the outside.
Now, you simply can’t do Potato Tapas without Aioli to dip it in! I don’t usually keep mayonnaise in the house because the store-bought stuff creeps me out, so I thought I’d try my hand at making my own. Here is the recipe I used:
>> Aioli (Spanish Mayonnaise):
– 1 egg yolk
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– Channel your inner tornado, and whisk the olive oil into the yolk, teaspoon by teaspoon.
– Hope for the best.
|Whisk, the morning after|
Now this whisk is the only prep photo, I can post. Why? Because, oh my goodness, I was a mess!!
During my 1:00am activity of choice (Why, Tiffany? Why?!)…
..I whisked the concoction at tornado-speed. For about 30 minutes straight. By hand.
..I clumsily dripped olive oil all over the kitchen floor.
..I almost called it quits every 3-5 minutes because it didn’t seem to be working.
..I slipped in the olive oil every 3-5 minutes and narrowly avoided severe injury.
But you know what? I did it!
I had some extra ingredients on hand, so I added a bit of natural tomato paste and roasted garlic:
|Tomato-Garlic Aioli! Yay!!|
I also made a chicken, red wine vinegar, and roasted red pepper dish, but I was so hungry that I forgot to photograph it!
As you can see, October Unprocessed has had its challenges so far, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t been delicious!
My lunches lately:
|Chicken, shrimp, & home-picked chard stems + coconut-chili creamed rainbow chard|
|Thai-style chicken meatballs with lime, cilantro, basil, chile peppers with a cauliflower, tomato, coconut-tamarind curry!|