Put a Positive Spin On Things

I’ve spent all day either on my bike, in the kitchen, the garden, or laying in bed and chipping away at a 4+ hour documentary about the CIA (!). I’d have gone to the office to work on some of my personal projects and do a little job hunting, but I think the chronic fatigue is creeping back into my life and I find it hard to do much of anything that requires a lot of cognitive input. And thankfully for me, baking and planting cucumbers doesn’t take much higher brain function.

I swear to glob that I’m not getting paid by Abeego. (Abeego, if you want to start paying me, go right ahead.)

Ever since deciding to make all of my almond milk from scratch, I’ve found myself inundated with a steady stream of the resulting meal once or twice a week. And since I ran out of peanut butter (and unable to churn out those awesome and healthy almond cookie balls), it’s just sort of been piling up. I tried making pancakes but those turned out not so good. I put some in a smoothie, but I don’t have the money to make enough smoothies every week to keep up with the meal! So I’m just starting to find myself throwing a little bit of it into everything.

I threw it on top of my baked mac n’ cheese (the recipe which I highly adapted from Pioneer Woman– namely, I used whole wheat flour for the roux, vegan butter, almond milk, dijon mustard, no egg, really huge pasta that I don’t remember the name of, and sprinkled flax seeds on top when I was done too), which turned out to-die-for. I also decided to make the above crackers; because why not? I haven’t baked them yet, so we’ll see if the 2 parts whole wheat flour, 1 part almond meal mix I started with turns out any good.

Adapted from a recipe by The Kitchn:

2ish c. whole wheat flour
1ish c. almond meal
1ish tsp sugar
1ish tsp salt
2ish tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/2ish c water

For topping: dried herb of choice, flax seeds, sea salt

Combine, roll thinly, brush with water, cut, top with stuff, bake at 450F for a few minutes.

But it made me realize that I’ve been doing something wrong this whole time. Instead of thinking of my cooking habits as being built up from this heap of trash that I was trying desperately to whittle away, what if I did the opposite? What if I started thinking about things from the standpoint of how much I was no longer using?

Instead of focusing on the fact that my oil still comes in a bottle, my butter in plastic-lined foil, and how its impossible to find pre-packaged pasta without some kind of plastic window, what if I instead focused on the other stuff?

Just by making raw almonds, flax seeds, and flour staples in my kitchen–and I know that lots of households have flour handy, but I really mean it as something that’s used ALL the time–I’ve saved on the packaging from store-bought milks, eggs, almond meal, bread crumbs, crackers, cookies, muffins, and baked goods of every sort. And how often are those things typically purchased? Usually on a weekly basis, right?

Wow, that’s a lot.

I think I’ll stop for a brief moment and be proud of myself. I’ve come a long, long ways in 6 months.

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