Saturday, 27 November 2010

Simple Does It

By: Notes From The Frugal Trenches

Every now and then I realize I'm making a mistake, I'm over complicating life. Sometimes I feel a need to have things a certain way, like I'm failing if my plate doesn't look, smell and taste all together epicurean. Sometimes I put so much pressure on myself to make things perfect that I seriously contemplate making something bought look homemade and fret (for a quick second!) at the fact I'll never have the skills to make something fit for a food magazine. And then a little voice inside me whispers some home truths, usually at the same time I smell toast toasting and marvel at it's succoring nature, it's ability to evoke so many wonderful emotions, it's ability to say so much about the beauty of simplicity. And somehow, by the time the butter is spread, toast has taught me a valuable lesson. Food, like life, doesn't need to be as complicated as we make it. Sure it's good to occasionally stretch oneself, but one's feet need to stay firmly planted on the ground.

With the stress of moving and new challenges, coupled with a few kitchen baking disasters (I may never try to make lemon tart again...) I've decided, as I ease into winter (-12 tonight....brr) and long work hours that I need to take lessons from toast with butter. Sometimes simple is all you really need. And so this week, I noticed a little change in my kitchen. Gone were the piles of dishes, dread about what to prepare and grumbling and instead simple, basic, joy.

And for the curious, my new simple favourites are:

- Toast with peanut butter
- Yogurt with homemade granola, almonds & fruit

- Fish with salad & green beans
- Homemade soup with homemade rolls
- Homemade curry with rice & veggies
- Beans on toast :)

- fruit with peanut butter or almond butter
- cheese and crackers
- canned apple sauce

- leftovers
- cut up veggies with hummus
- winter veggie pasta

One day I'm sure I'll try something more complicated, but right now I'm savoring in the simple. And after a simple meal and a simple evening spent knitting, my heart and soul tell me I'm in the place I'm meant to be, even if I never succeed at lemon tart!

Do you get little reminders to focus on the simple things? What does your food say about you?


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Heather Woollove said...

I love this sweet post! Yes...we do make things hard for ourselves, sometimes, don't we?? There's an old La Leche League cookbook that you might really like called "Whole Foods for the Whole Family"'s one link to buying it(used):
It has simple recipes which are not fussy about ingredients, ie. "If you have 3 eggs use them, if not, use 2". Warmly--

Notes From The Frugal Trenches said...

Thanks Heather, I'll have to check that out it sounds great!

Sarah said...

I have an awesome recipe for lemon cheesecake somewhere, which I once made in 10 minutes flat... if you feel the need for easy lemon dessert goodness ;)

IowaSue said...

We couldn't agree more - relax and you can learn to love your kitchen again. Kids never have memories of anything gourmet - it's simple dishes and relaxed times they remember.
The Iowa Housewife

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With the stress of moving and new challenges, coupled with a few kitchen baking disasters

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Anonymous said...

that soup looks delicious! i would love to know what's in it!!!

Joanne said...

In my life I seem to see-saw between trying to challenge myself and do more and then desperately trying to simplify when I feel overwhelmed. Its good to get reminders about what really matters.

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simplifyingthesimplelife said...

After preparing an elaborate and fancy thanksgiving for the family - I am so excited to get back to simple, honest food! Thanks for the reminder that things don't need to be complicated to be delish!

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