So………..I’ve made the commitment that I want to feed my family healthier. Hooray for me! Now, where the heck am I going to find that healthier food? I’ve been following various food blogs and looking at their beautiful photography and want to use these good ingredients, but I need to know where to find them. I knew where to find the farmers market and since it was Summer when I started this process, that was an easy place to start. The Farmer’s market is a great place to find a great variety of produce that you can make into lots of simple recipes. Also, with no labels to read on the produce, this is the simplest answer to where to find Real Food. If you want tips on going to farmers markets, you can find them here.
|Easy whole wheat pasta salad with grape tomatoes|
My next dilemma was where to find good meat. I knew by this time that I didn’t want meat
processed with lots of chemicals. See ya chicken nuggets and traditional lunch meat! I also knew that I cared about how the meat was raised. I did not want to be putting sick animals that were fed a steady diet of antibiotics into my family’s bodies. Jamie Oliver and the media had taught me that pink slime was bad and I didn’t want that either. I could try to become a vegetarian, but what about the rest of my family? In the end……….I knew that I needed to find a healthy source of meat for my family. Many folks in the foodie circles actually buy their meat directly from farmers and buy a years worth at once. That may still be an option for me in the future, but for right now I decided to go with a local butcher. They do a lot of prep work right in front of their customers and they will readily discuss where their meat comes from. An added bonus is that it is mostly locally sourced. These folks take pride in creating quality meat products for my family. They are not simply throwing meat product down an assembly line. This seemed to be a great option for my family.
Next problem………..lunch meat. There are probably plenty of families out there that don’t view sourcing lunch meat as a problem because they don’t eat it. However, in my family lunch meat is very important. It is one of the few things that Mr. 15 year old will eat and sandwiches are an easy go-to when there is a rush to get to activities. My thought process was that it had to be better to throw a homemade sandwich at the kids than having them eat fast food, but I needed the right ingredients. Lunch meats are typically full of nitrites, nitrates and fillers. I just want the meat and nothing else. So…….where do I go? You guessed it……….Google search!! What I found was a brand named Applegate that sells lunch meat without nitrites or nitrates and doesn’t use antibiotics. Now where do I find it? Applegate’s website allows for ordering online and also has a store locator. My local grocery store was listed. Unfortunately, I was not able to locate it there and the deli clerks were absolutely no help to me. I was crushed. The next week I decided to try a different store. Heinen’s is a local store that has a nice focus on natural products. Not everything there is good, but quite a bit of it fits into a REAL Food lifestyle. My husband went up to the deli counter and asked if they had any nitrate-free deli meats. Isn’t he good? ( I love this about him! ) He was told that they didn’t have any at the deli, but just around the corner they had Applegate meats in packages. Score! I let out a whoop like you wouldn’t believe……….over deli meat. Who would have thought it? They also have pepperoni so my family’s pizza habit can continue. Applegate doesn’t pay me, but I thought I would share because I love their meat so much. I just love that my kids are eating healthier with just a few switches in ingredients.
|I love their motto: Changing the Meat We Eat|
As you can see, shopping for REAL Food is not as simple as running through the grocery store in 15 minutes. I do shop at multiple locations to get my weekly shopping done. Just remember……if I can do it with my 4 little over-achievers, then you can too. Juggling Real Food and Real Life will be your partner in making the change. Make sure you sign up for our email service at the right, so you don’t miss an episode. Next time…….more REAL Food sourcing to make life easier and healthier. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page. Till next time…………Keep Juggling!