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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution

I've always liked Jamie Oliver. Years ago I used to watch his cooking show on tv called "The Naked Chef." The food was simple to prepare and he used a minimum of ingredients. Both his recipes and cooking style were very appealing to me because they were wonderfully simple.

Fast forward to now and I heard that Jamie was starting a food revolution here in the U.S. to help show people how to be healthier by eating healthier. His goal is to teach people of all ages how to choose healthy foods and how to cook to obtain the advantages that food offers us instead of the disadvantages that for a variety of reasons so many of us get sucked into over time.

I try to eat healthy foods but I have my weaknesses. I can easily eat an entire bag of Lays BBQ Baked Potato Chips in a single sitting, a pint of Ben and Jerrys's Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream in a day or order french fries at every opportunity. But in a more normal day to day scenario I wanted to share with you that sometimes I do eat things that aren't really healthy but I tweak them to make them more healthy.

One point often brought up in news articles and blogs about Jamie's new show is that for people who don't have a lot of income or live on food stamps, purchasing the "healthy" foods he recommends is simply beyond some people's budgets. Well I've lived through times of plenty and some pretty lean times. During the tough times I've lived off of ramen noodles 10 for $1.00, canned chili 10 for $10.00 and eggs cooked every way you can cook them for protein instead of meat. Watching Food Revolution has made me want to share with people that just because you don't have a lot of money doesn't mean you can't eat healthy foods. So here's one of my healthy budget meals...

Ramen noodles which you can often find for as little as 10 packages for $1. But I add my own fresh or frozen vegetables! Here I added freshly blanched asparagus, sugar snap peas and daikon radish. True the asparagus and sugar snap peas aren't the cheapest vegetables around but if you buy fresh vegetables in season or large bags of frozen vegetables on sale you can have veggies at a more affordable cost. During lean times I would buy big bags of frozen green beans, broccoli and corn and add them to the soup.

Because I add in so many veggies I only make half a package of the ramen noodles and only use half of the seasoning packet per serving. To be super healthy I want to point out that while I enjoy the broth for flavor I don't drink it because that's where all of the sodium is.

Here I used a Benriner vertical spiral slicer to create these thin strands of daikon radish. The slicer itself costs between $40-$50+ depending where you purchase it. I made the investment years ago and I love how I can slice different kinds of vegetables with it. It works great on carrots too which then fit nicely into a sandwich, burrito, tacos, or a pasta dish mixed with spaghetti.

I poured the soup and noodles over the daikon and then placed the blanched fresh veggies on top to finish off the dish. The fresh veggies I sliced and cooked in the boiling soup water for just a couple of minutes each, removed them, then used the same water to make the noodles and broth in. It's so easy. You can even drop an egg in to add a little protein to your meal.

If you try it and like it send me a picture of your bowl of ramen and I'll add it to this post :)

Watch Jamie's "Food Revolution" tv show on ABC. CLICK HERE to view more info about the program or watch the full episodes online.


  1. I LOVE his show and now I am more conscious about what I put in my body too! It's a good thing!


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