I had a reader recently tell me that she was intimidated by some of the ingredients I use in my recipes. I thought a post like this was in order.
I can understand how that reader felt. I, as well, had those same fears when I first started using whole food ingredients. I just picked 1 new thing a week and that helped me not feel so overwhelmed. You can read all about my start under the “about” section of the blog. Here is a list of foods I never used, and some I never heard of, in my first 35 years of life.
1. Coconut Oil – I avoided anything coconut like the plaque. First, I hated the taste, and second, I knew it contained a lot of saturated fat. At the time, I thought fats were bad. I have since learned otherwise.
2. Rolled Oats – My impression of eating oatmeal was getting the Quaker microwavable packets. I honestly thought they were healthy at the time. Now, rolled oats are a staple since I use them to make my homemade granola and my overnight oats.
3. Raw Honey – Since I was so used to processed sugar, I never really liked the taste of honey. I had actually never even heard of raw honey. Raw honey helps with seasonal allergies, so we always keep it on hand now. Just make sure you get a locally made one to insure you are getting all the benefits.
5. Pure Maple Syrup – I must admit, in the past, my idea of maple syrup was getting a bottle of Aunt Jamima.(I know!) Just trying to be honest. Now I only buy pure maple syrup. When I first made the switch, I didn’t really like it. But as my body became less dependent on processed sugar, I started to notice that it was actually very sweet. Now I use it often in baking.
6. Quinoa – I am not much of a rice fan, but my husband is. So we always had white or brown rice in the house. I had heard of quinoa, but never really bought it. We started to eat it once we learned it was a complete protein. Now we use it often, in place of rice.
7. Black Rice – I had no idea that black rice even existed until I took a close look at the bulk bins at Whole Foods! Now it is one of my favorite kinds of rice. We almost never even use brown rice anymore.
8. Medjool Dates – I have to be honest, when I first started to see recipes that called for medjool dates, I quickly skipped by them. For some reason, I thought dates were the same as prunes. I didn’t care too much for prunes. Come to find out, they taste very different and quite delicious actually! Try stuffing one with some almond butter and you will see what I mean.
Please do not feel intimidated by any of my recipes. We are all on different paths and some are just starting out. I think it’s good to remember we all felt like that in the beginning.