Saturday, April 4, 2009
The Poor House
A funny thing happened on the way to the poor house.
Yes, Martha, they used to have poor houses. Then they called them slum clearance projects followed by low-income housing and now tent cities it seems. Still a roof of any kind over your head can be a blessing even if it leaks. Mine thankfully doesn't.
I always suspected on some level that poor was green. If you cannot afford the electric bill you do not leave lights, energy saving or not, on all the time. You lower the heat. You put on an extra layer of clothes. You don't waste money on bottled water and add all those plastic bottles to the landfill. And now I have bought the necessary cord and connections to make a clothes line which wastes no energy drying clothes.
And I have cut down on the food budget. Weren't we told to not eat like our parents did? Down with the pork chops and gravy! I like to eat good. And there are several items where only organic will do like eggs and dairy products and poultry. I generally buy skinned and boned chicken breasts that are organic too. The prices on them have sky rocketed. I was able to buy an organic whole chicken at a fraction of the price and so I did. I roasted it with stuffing made from the remains of the sourdough bread I had bought. Yummmy. Food for several days. But I had not suspected that comfort food might actually be healthy but we used to call them balanced meals.
I have a cooking column I write for a local paper and I have been doing a series on comfort food for about a month now. I have resurrected some of Mom's old recipes and tested again before sending them off to the paper. I figured I would gain weight on this old fashioned (but highly economical) way of cooking so I was avoiding the scale. But I have lost weight! First clue was jeans fitting looser so I dared the scale.
Maybe there is something to be said for the "balanced" meals of my youth. Maybe we do need some natural fats to burn the calories. Maybe eating what our body craves makes you raid the refrigerator less. I don't have the answer but something is working here.