Reel Food Challenge Update

Here is my weekly update on the eat-real-food challenge:

Things are going great for us, I have learned alot, tried some new recipes, done some research about local groceries, and adapted the way that I grocery shop.

I made granola for the first time this week. My friend at Life Under a Blue Roof gave me some that she made a few weeks ago and it was great. So, I found a recipe on the internet, found the organic ingredients that I needed (thanks to a special trip to Whole Foods and Trader Joe's in Pittsburgh), and went to work. The first batch burnt (I think because I left out about 2 cups worth of nuts making the volume much less that the recipe intended). The second batch was perfect! We all love it. I have been mixing it in yogurt each morning for breakfast.

I also made strawberry jam and apple butter (that might have been last week). I omitted about 1/2 of the sugar called for in each recipe and they are both still sweet and very good. I am also mixing that into plain yogurt with the granola. I learned how to can when I made the jam.

I dehydrated bananas for the first time this week. We dehydrate apples as a regular snack weekly but I had never tried bananas before. Jeff and Eli like them. I am not crazy about them, I prefer the apples.

My next task is to try to make my own yogurt. As soon as the current bowl of yogurt is almost gone, I will give that a try. I like the plain yogurt with a little bit of fruit jam and granola added. I have always thought that store bought fruit yogurt was too sweet. Jeff, however, does not like it. He thinks the yogurt is too bitter/not sweet enough.

I realized this morning when Eli and I were in the grocery store getting some fresh fruit and veggies that I have not been in many other isles of the grocery store for a while. I have eliminated the few processed/boxed foods that we used to eat. I have been making our own bread so I have eliminated that from the grocery list. I got organic rice, pasta, and baking supplies in bulk from Frankferd Farms (a local organic farm/store) a while back and we are still using that. The produce department and the milk/eggs/cheese section is about all we shop at.

I did have an unfortunate run-in with a local girl scout at the Butler Farm Market last weekend. There was a troop of girl scouts selling cookies by the entrance of the store. They had a sign up that said "Sorry, we are out of Thin Mints". So, when they asked me if I wanted to buy any cookies I said, "No Thanks! Thin Mints are my favorite". Well, while we were shopping this girl came and found me in the store to tell me that one of the moms showed up with a new case of Thin Mints, "How many boxes should I put aside for you?" This girl has a promising future in sales.... I did manage to get away with just 1 box of thin mints.

That's what's going on with the eat-real-food challenge this week. My goal for next week is to make yogurt, plant some of my starter seeds for the garden, and do a little more planning for our garden (I just found out about a "cold frame", we are looking into that for lettuce and some other greens).


  1. Those thin mints will get you every time...
    I'm just lucky that Todd takes the boxes & leaves them at work. I'm not supposed to eat them, but I still don't want any temptation around my house.

    You have done so much with food this past month! Eli is so lucky that you're learning about this when he is little, because he's going to learn so much from you. :)

  2. Saw your comment on NDIN re the trip to the grocery store, and I had to laugh, because I had the same reaction when I went shopping this morning. My groceries were so PURE! :D