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Menu Swap: October 19th

Posted Oct 18 2009 10:00pm

L ife has been just so hectic lately because of the wedding. If I’m not working or trying to accomplish some homework or even babysitting, I’m doing something for the wedding. My lack of blog posts will be a result of my insanity in trying to get things done in my ever so (at the moment) vivacious life. I’ve also been having some more health issues - yay - and trying to figure that out. That, in turn, put me on an elimination diet and thankfully determined the cause of my acid reflux. Unfortunately, I have to bid farewell to citrus fruit. The acid is just too much for me and I was gurgling up pure acid that was giving me constant sore throats. That, of course, is not what is supposed to happen when you eat something “good for you”. I also have to eliminate certain lettuces from my diet because they seem too harsh for me to digest. So. No dairy, wheat, limited soy, no citrus, and no lettuce. I’m still lucky. I’m fine with tomatoes as of now and let’s hope that doesn’t change.

The ingredient of the week is “squash”, chosen by Wendy at Celiac's in the House. The term squash contains a wide spectrum of vegetables that fall into two classifications: winter and summer. Gourds, as well, are tied into the winter squash category; for example, kabocha pumpkin is also known as the sweet dumpling squash. To my knowledge, there are only a few summer squashes, zucchini, patty pan, crookneck, but, I may be wrong. Zucchini is a very popular ingredient to Italians. Not only is it prepared in basic entrees, but, the flowers are harvested, stuffed, and either fried or served as is. Zucchini blossoms are considered a delicacy and I still have yet to locate these gems and find out exquisite they really are. My grandmother used to speak about them constantly. Squash, as a whole, is a very low calorie food and high water content. In my opinion, the winter squashes contain more nutrients than their counterpart, but, that’s not to say that they aren’t delicious. The defining characteristic of summer squash is that it contains a substantial amount of manganese and supplies a decent source of vitamin C. So, considering I can’t take the pristine source of Vitamin C, citrus fruit, I can rely on squash to be one of the substituting contributors.
My personal favorite method of enjoying squash is to stir fry it. Stir fried summer squash is the uttermost divine preparation method. It softens the vegetable, yet, still leaves a ‘crunch’ to it. Of course, this is a total contradiction to the way my grandmother used to do it: roast it in the oven along side of potatoes. I ate it because that’s how she prepared it and it was a very stereotypical Italian dish. Of course, I do it a little different now but the essence of my grandmother still remains lingering about me when I stand in the kitchen. I think that’s why I cook as much as I do, because she did and she always believed in me as well as loved my cooking.

Until the wedding, I’m eating very light foods to assure that I won’t become a balloon in my dress. I’m putting myself on a more strict anti-inflammatory diet. I normally follow this diet which is essentially a Mediterranean diet, but of course, I cheat. That’s why I’m honestly avoiding all citrus for the time being and other foods I know hurt me that I still snitch on occasion. For more information on this diet, see here: I’m also going on the “soup and salad” road for several reasons. One, it gets hard eating large amounts of food 10 PM when I get home from work and, two, it’s easier for my stomach to process at the moment.

One month left!

Menu Swap of Week October 19th

Soup au Pistou
Zucchini & Potato Salad
Cabbage Waldorf Salad

Trout Florentine with Wild Rice
Oyster Fricassee with Polenta Biscuits
Sardinian Stuffed Acorn Squash

Pomegranate Mango Chutney
Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cupcakes

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