Sunday, July 11

More on minimalist cooking

More-With-Less Cookbook (World Community Cookbook)

My mom loaned me the More With Less cookbook. I wish I'd had it four years ago, when I got married and had no idea how to eat or cook nutritious meals.

She has a formula in this book about how dairy should be eaten with grains, and legumes should be eaten with grains. That way you maximize the nutrition and protein of both foods.

Your body doesn't absorb much nutrition from your food anyway (I think about 20% actually goes toward nourishment, while the rest goes toward heating your body and things like that). But you can increase the amount of nutrition absorbed by eating certain things together. Dairy products are high in some nutrients and low in others, while grains (pasta, breads, etc.) are high where dairy is low, and low where dairy is high.

Legumes and grains compliment the same way, so eating rice and beans together is actually quite efficient, nutrition-wise. (Or eating a peanut-butter sandwich, or beans and tortillas, or lentil soup and muffins ... the list goes on.)

So anyway, I made an interesting dinner of mashed navy beans and garlic (white bean spread), toasted strips of salted bread to dip in said spread, and white rice. And it was actually really tasty and filling. We actually ran out of bread much faster than I thought we would, because the bread strips were like long, crunchy croutons, and the kids devoured them.

It's hard having to live on a pretty-much vegetarian diet, but when money's tight, meat is too expensive. We still get eggs and milk, and sometimes cheese.

Thanks to my neighbor and her food care packages for the ministries she works for, I have a pantry stuffed to the gills with beans. So we won't run short on beans. I do wish that I had some soybeans, because those are the highest in protein, but in the meantime I have all the other beans. And life goes on.


Farm Girl said...

I wish I had given you that book when you got married too. It all sounds so interesting coming back from you. When I read the book it didn't sink in much. I am so thankful for Joanne. Don't loose heart.
Everything that happens fits into a pattern for good, but that pattern and that purpose is to shape us in to the likeness of His Son
"For whom He foreknew, He predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son."
Romans 8:29
Remember J.K. Rowling and Edith Nesbitt. Both went through hard times. :)
Restlessness and impatience change nothing except our peace and joy. Peace does not dwell in outward things, but in the heart prepared to wait, trustfully and quietly on Him who has all things safely in His hands. (Keep a quiet heart, p.135)
"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."
John 14:27

Meg said...

Hey there's nothing wrong with a mostly vegetarian diet. We always feel so gross after eating red meat so I stick mostly to white meat, if any meat at all. It's actually better for you, as I've heard Americans consume too much protein and meat as it is.

NetRaptor said...

Mom: Thanks for the verses. :)

Meg: You encourage me, too! And your tostada recipe today also looks like something I could make with my limited resources. Hooray for minimalist cooking! I feel like admitting that we can't afford meat is like coming out of the closet.

Meg said...

I love minimalist cooking. I think we get the most creative when we don't have much to work with. I think not cooking with much/any meat is like stickin' it to the man! So WOOT! :P

Jennifer said...

Hi Kessie! You can email me at if you get a chance. I have a freezer full of soybeans that I am sure we will not use by the end of the month. I want to run some over. They will last a long time and they are pretty versatile. Let me know when I can stop by for a second!


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