Friday, January 14, 2011

Make more food from scratch (Change 100)

DH and I had a bit of a health scare last month.  Driving him to the hospital when he had chest pains was not my idea of a fun time.  He has had high normal blood pressure for years, but neither of us really thought anything of it.  This time we took notice, and resolved to improve our eating and exercising habits.

One of the things we are trying to do is lower our salt and fat intake.  We don't eat a lot of prepared foods, but our cupboards and refrigerator are still crammed with crackers, canned beans, ketchup, hummus and various other items that are made by someone else, stuffed with added salt and fat that we don't need. 

I've never really given any true thought to the environmental impact of purchasing these products, but when you take the time to look at how your purchases contribute to the landfill, it can be an eye-opening experience.  It also is not good for our health - some of these products can contain up to 40% of our daily salt intake in one serving.  And who ever has just one serving?

For the new year, I am resolving to make more food from scratch.  Make my own hummus, salad dressings and salsa to start.  Then as I get more comfortable with the process, I am going to try my own ketchup, crackers and seasoning mixes.  

There is less packaging, because I will be buying items in bulk and not throwing out one-time use containers.  Our diets will be healthier because I will be able to control the amount of salt and fat we intake.  This sounds like a resolution I can stick with.


  1. I've found the unexpected bonus of cooking more from scratch means that many restaurant foods taste too salty. so we don't want to go out to eat too often. good luck with your quest & may your husband continue to improve...and quickly!

  2. i hope you post some recipes!!!!!

    I too am trying to make more meals from scratch...

  3. I don't know if this recipe contains less salt than commercial, but the ketchup is delish, and easy to make
    Homemade Ketchup
    Easy peasy. Honestly, I wouldn't have posted the recipe if I didn't think that everyone could succeed. It can also be halved or doubled (if you have a big enough pot.)

  4. Good for you! I can't stress enough what eating homemade organic food has done for me. I was very ill, in bed often due to fibromyalgia and had high bp and high insulin. I started eating almost 100% organically and from scratch and lost 30 lbs and bp is great (says my doctor) and insulin is normal.

    I still make cookies and brownies and such. I LOVE to bake but it's from scratch and organic.

  5. Having just participated in No Impact Week, where you have to anaylize both your food and your garbage, I am with you on making more food from scratch for all the reasons you said above (although no chest pains far, thank God-get well DH!) The "tricky" ones are English muffins and crackers... but dang it, they were made for hundreds of years without factories, so there you go. Good luck!

  6. MMMM homemade hummus. Another of my families favorites is homemade bbq sauce.

  7. Thanks, everyone for your comments. We only had the one incident with DH, Thank God, and are awaiting results of his stress test to see where we need to go from here.

    I've found a terrific hummus recipe, and am eager to try the ketchup and barbeque sauce (we BBQ a LOT in the summer).

    I've always baked from scratch because of DD1's food allergies, but haven't tried to make baking exclusively organic. Hmmmm....maybe another entry for another time? :)