Slow Cooker White Beans and Sausage
It has quickly become obvious to me that my main challenge in trying to live a Real Food existence will not be in the dinner category. By definition of how I normally cook, it’s already pretty real! I mean, how many recipes do you see out there that call for fake food? When I really think about it, the most highly processed thing we eat at dinner time is pasta. And I’m pretty sure that if I switch to whole wheat (I’m so scared…) or make it myself from scratch, I wouldn’t be breaking any food rules. It’s the snacks and convenience foods that will be difficult, but I’ll get into that in a later post.
In case you’re wondering about my food rules, they are technically the “Food Rules” in the book of the same name by Michael Pollan. Yes, like millions of others, I saw him this week on Oprah and decided immediately to buy the book and follow it’s doctrine. Oddly, I was about one-third of the way through Jillian Michaels’ latest book, “Mastering Your Metabolism,” which discusses in great detail how eating a diet full of C. R. A. P. messes with our hormones and was already planning to drastically change my eating habits. I guess listening to Michael Pollan helped me press the fast-forward button on the process.
As could be expected (this always happens to me), by the end of the first day of what is technically a detox period, I developed a horrible headache, which is likely to be with me for 3 to 4 days. I guess that’s a good sign, though. My body HATES it when I stop feeding it sugar!
Food for the Day (by the way, I’m never going to include coffee as that is just a given on every, single day):
Breakfast: Honey Nut O’s with Raspberries
Lunch: Chicken Salad Sandwich with Lettuce & Tomato (homemade chicken salad, with the lettuce and tomato bit being the “upgrade” — I never bother on a sandwich made in my own kitchen)
Dinner: Slow Cooker White Beans and Sausage (recipe follows) + Carrots
Slow Cooker White Beans and Sausage, Adapted from Relish! meal planning service
2 Andouille Sausages
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1 Shallot, minced
1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 lb. dried Navy or Great Northern Beans
4 Cups Chicken Stock
2 Cups Water
1/2 cup White Wine
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh Thyme
Heat oil over medium heat in heavy skillet; cut sausages into bite-size (1/2″) pieces and add to the skillet; remove when browned on all sides. Add shallot and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Place sausages, onion/garlic mixture and all remaining ingredients into a slow cooker. Set on low and cook for about 8 hours. Be sure to check the liquid near the end to avoid burning.
This was a very tasty dinner which definitely fit the “eat food, mostly plants, not too much” adage. Did everything I use technically meet the definition of Real Food? Probably not. I already had all of the ingredients on hand and I used what I had (as I will continue to do until no previously purchased food exists. I’m sure the sausage was not made from “grass fed” animals and I was shocked to find (I checked) that my Organice Free-Range Chicken Broth contained dried sugar cane. Why on earth does chicken broth need sugar? I am going to be busy with all the homemade stuff I’m going to have to start making. Maybe the trade-off of making my own broth will off-set the extra cost of the organic vegetables and pastured meats I’m going to be buying.