Five years ago Fred and I decided to change the way we eat. Okay…let’s be honest…I decided we were going to make some changes in our diet and Fred just went along with me, because he’s great like that. The main objective was to cut out preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, and added sugar. Are you aware of the many things that have these three ingredients? I mean seriously, what were we supposed to eat for the rest of our lives, broccoli and chicken?!? Twinkies are out. Little Debbies are out. Fritos are out. Peanut butter and crackers are out. For crying out loud Jif peanut butter is off the list!! What kind of world are we living in?
I dove right in and started making all of our bread (with whole wheat flour), granola bars, snacks, yogurt, and all sorts of other things. Secretly, I wanted to grind my own wheat using this contraption. (Who am I kidding? I STILL want this wheat grinder. Yes, I do.) On occasion I even drove 30 minutes (one way!) to buy goat’s milk. Basically, I was wearing myself out. I’m excited to report that we have reached a happy medium in our diet. Let’s face it, someone serving in a Southern Baptist church can not have too many dietary restrictions and still be effective…can I get some banana pudding and an amen?!?
Around this same time Fred and I had a garden. Every year we seemed to have zucchini coming out of our ears. It’s delicious, but after a while it begins to become like manna for the Israelites. What’s for breakfast? Zucchini. What’s for lunch? Zucchini. Do we have any snacks? Zucchini. You get the idea. So, I came up with a plan. I shredded the zucchini and froze it in quart freezer bags. Then I instituted “Meatless Mondays”. When it came time for Monday I would thaw the zucchini and pour off the excess water. (Zucchini has a lot of water. Before you cook with it you will want to get rid of the excess. See the zucchini cakes recipe below.) Here are some of the things I added to our menu:
Veggie Lasagna-You can use this recipe, but sub the ground beef for zucchini. For added nutrients try adding spinach too.
Veggie Quesadillas-Just make quesadillas, but instead of chicken add sauted onions, zucchini and squash.
Last but not least…not a dinner option, but equally delicious. Actually, this could be dinner if that’s how you roll.
Zucchini Bread (I add regular sugar instead of honey. The zucchini cancels out the sugar. Not really, but whatever.)
Non-Zucchini Meatless Monday Ideas:
Homemade Pizza loaded with veggies
Ham and Beans
Mexican Rice and Beans
What I determined is I can’t change the world, but I can change this corner. By this entire family doing without meat for one day a week we can be less of a drain on the world food supply. It’s certainly not earth shattering, but we have to begin somewhere.
Why did I mention all of this? Basically, I was at the grocery store and saw some zucchini. Seeing the zucchini prompted the memory of our diet change. The diet change reminded me of Meatless Monday. Meatless Monday reminded me of some of my favorite meals. Some of my favorite meals involve zucchini. (Has anyone read Laura Numeroff’s books? If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, If You Take a Mouse to the Movies, If You Give a Cat a Cupcake….Yeah, that’s what that last paragraph felt like!) Go out and get some zucchini and make some of the above recipes! If you adopt Meatless Monday let me know. I think you’ll really like it…zucchini or not.