Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Plastic-Free Food: Day 4

The rain is still coming down outside... we're supposed to get somewhere around another 8 inches on top of the 10 inches that we got the other day... our rain barrels are officially overflowing.  Our plastic-free food week is going awesome... it's hard to believe we're over half way through the week.  I picked up our CSA (community supported agriculture) box today... often we get a few plastic bags... but I planned ahead and called Ryan with Progressive Gardens last week to make sure that I didn't get any plastic bags in our box.  Instead of plastic bags, they put our arugula and okra in biobags.  YAY!!!  (I'll get pics up tomorrow once I figure out what all I'm going to do with our bounty!)

Our meals were pretty simple today.  Our breakfast was fairly similar to day three.  My husband had an omelet, my daughter and I both had banana peach smoothies (they were rather large), my oldest son had a cinnamon roll and I found a leftover pancake in the freezer for my youngest... the pancakes are officially gone!  For lunch, my kids BEGGED me to make pizzas again like we did on day 2.  While my daughter was spreading the tomato sauce on the whole wheat tortillas she asked me if we could make these pizzas whenever we're not doing the no plastic thing.  OF COURSE!!!  It's a super easy lunch... it's plastic-free... and my kids LOVE it!!

For the past week or so, my kids have been begging me to make chocolate chip cookies and today seemed like the perfect day.  So after lunch, we made chocolate chip cookies!!  When making cookies there are a few things that come in plastic.

#1:  Brown Sugar comes in a plastic bag (or a box with a plastic bag inside)-- a couple of months ago, I didn't have any brown sugar... so I decided to try to make my own.  Making brown sugar is crazy easy... it's one of those things that I'd never buy again plastic or no plastic.  Here's how to make it: measure out the amount of sugar you need (for example: for 1 cup brown sugar just measure 1 cup granulated sugar... I use organic raw sugar bought in bulk).  Put the measured amount of sugar into a food processor and add a bit of molasses-- a little goes a long way (I use blackstrap... it's in a glass jar).

Process the sugar and molasses in the food processor until it resembles brown sugar... of course, add molasses until the desired "brown sugar" (light or dark) is reached.  (The food processor is the easiest method, but I've also made brown sugar using just a bowl and fork.)

Check out the brown sugar that I made with the raw granulated sugar!

#2 Chocolate Chips come in plastic bags-- I took my own container (a yogurt container that I saved to reuse) to Lovey's Market and purchased bulk semi-sweet chocolate chips.

#3 Nuts:  I LOVE nuts in my cookies.  However, I didn't put any in these cookies because my husband prefers them without (BOO!)... but I just wanted to mention nuts because they too can be bought in bulk instead of purchasing them in plastic bags (like the ones sold right next to the chocolate chips ;) )

Did I miss any plastic ingredients??  Hmmm... I've seen vanilla in plastic containers, but the brand I use comes in glass with a metal lid.... 

I'd like to say that we ate our cookies as dessert... but I'll be honest... we ate them straight out of the oven as an afternoon snack.  I ate mine with the almond milk that I made the other day!!!  YUM!!

For dinner, we decided to go out to eat... ok... who am I kidding... we planned on going out to eat after dance (my daughter does a few classes and I do hip hop).  We hit up my favorite place in town:  Flaming Amy's Burrito Barn.  Flaming Amy's is fast, cheap and easy... and oh so yummy!!  Usually when we go to Amy's we end up with about 4 little plastic cups for salsa... tonight I asked them if I could have some small reusable bowls for salsa and asked that they put my daughters dip on her plate instead of in a plastic cup.  No straws, no salsa cups, and no take out containers... we were 100% plastic-free at Flaming Amy's!!!  WOOHOO!!!

Ginger Peach Salsa... mmmm... I'm ready to go back already!!