So yesterday I went to HEB to stock up on an array of healthy foods.
And, yes, I promise I’ll quit talking about this at some point because I’m sure more than several of you are thinking I was a lot more fun when I still ate donuts. That’s because I was a lot more fun when I still ate donuts.
But this is what I’m doing right now and I tend to get a little obsessive (I prefer the term “focused”.) when I get on a kick. Of course I guess I shouldn’t call this a kick because that implies I may not be really committed. So I guess this is how I get when I’m establishing a new healthy habit initiative.
I want you to know I’m making fun of myself even in my own head right now.
Anyway, I went to HEB and I mainly shopped the perimeter of the store because that’s what all the healthy eating folks tell you to do. SHOP THE PERIMETER. It’s where you find all your fresh produce and meats and some other things that taste like a goat’s bottom.
I completely avoided the chip aisle. And the cracker aisle. And the candy aisle.
But it’s never taken me so long to finish a trip to the grocery store because I have never had to concentrate that hard. All those experts give all their advice but no one tells you how to find the goldenberries that Dr. Oz says are good for your heart. Or maybe they’re good for your metabolism. I can’t even remember anymore. And it doesn’t really matter since I never even found the dang goldenberries. I bought blackberries instead and I’m hoping my body won’t know the difference.
After an hour or more wandering the PERIMETER of HEB, I had a cart full of fresh foods and flaxseed oil capsules and Diet Coke. Because I am only human. I can eliminate the powdered Donettes from my diet, but if you try to take away my Diet Coke I will cut you.
I went to check out at the front and that’s when I learned that eating healthy is expensive. All that papaya adds up. As do the fish oil tabs and the coconut water and the triple-washed spinach leaves. Not to mention that I’ll actually have to really cook all that stuff in the next five days or it will go bad. That’s something you don’t have to worry about with Twinkies. I could find a Twinkie from 1984 and it would still be good. (Good might be an overstatement. It would still be edible.)
(On a Twinkie sidenote, I bought a box of them about a year ago because P and I were reminiscing about Twinkies and Zingers and Little Debbie snacks of yore. They were not nearly as delicious as I remembered them being when I was in fourth grade.)
Once I got home I put away all my healthy groceries, save for the pack of Nestle Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough that Caroline requested, and tried to figure out which of my new low-fat, super healthy meals I was going to actually cook for dinner.
I decided on a chicken parmesan recipe that my friend Michelle sent me. And so about five o’clock I got out all my ingredients and dipped the chicken cutlets in egg. (I originally wrote that as “my chicken cutlets” but I’ve watched too many episodes of Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders and was worried y’all might think I was talking about those fake things people stuff in their bra.) (I don’t own those. But if I did I wouldn’t dip them in anything.) After I dipped them in egg I rolled them in the whole wheat bread crumbs I bought and some Italian seasoning.
The lucky vegetable side dishes of the evening were zucchini and broccoli. I got those ready until it was time to spoon a little marinara sauce over the chicken and add a LIGHT sprinkling of skim mozzarella cheese. Finally, everything was ready and I fixed three plates and P, Caroline and I sat down at the table to eat.
The following is our conversation:
Me: “How was everybody’s day today?”
Caroline: “It was good.”
Me: “Did Bops come eat lunch with you?”
Caroline: “Yes, we sat out in the sun on the grass.”
P: “What did you do to this chicken?”
Me: Blank stare.
Caroline: “Yeah. What my dad just said. What did you do to this chicken?”
Me: “You mean what did I season it with?”
P: “Well, yes. That. But the chicken. What’s wrong with it?”
Caroline: “Yeah, Mom. What’s wrong with it?”
Me: Gets up from table, packs bags and moves out.
(Not really. But if I did do that let’s also say that I made sure the wheels of the station wagon squealed loudly as I peeled out of the driveway.)
Ultimately it was determined that the issue my people had with the chicken was not as much about the whole wheat bread crumbs as it was about the WHITE MEAT. Because they do not share my belief that dark meat chicken is of the devil. Caroline has inherited her father’s love of the dark meat. (Gag.) And so in the past, on the rare occasion I cook chicken, I have acquiesced and bought them some boneless, skinless thighs or chicken legs (I just threw up in my mouth.) to eat instead of white meat.
But I thought we were all onboard the get healthy train. As it turns out, I think I’m riding the train all by myself.
I explained that I was going to be trying some new recipes and some might be good and others might not be so good, but they just needed to be patient while I figured it out. Caroline said, “Mama, I hope this doesn’t become like the school cafeteria. They got rid of baked potatoes to be more healthy and now all the food is bad and that’s why I bring my lunch every day.”
P chimed in and said, “Well, if that happens here we’ll start packing our own dinner to dinner.”
And then they both died laughing because they are hilarious.
Just wait until tomorrow night when they’re getting an all-veggie frittata made with egg whites for dinner. They’ll wish for that white meat chicken then.
But the hand that rocks the cradle or stirs the spoon or breads white meat chicken with whole wheat bread crumbs rules the world.