the best endeavor yet

The summer’s bring a time of farmers markets, sitting on the balcony outside, herb gardens…and not an extra minute to enjoy it!  (Although I would NEVER complain about it!!! ha!) Five years ago I started working with a weight-loss camp for kids along with my parents and now because I have a full-time job I just go to help out on the weekends. This year I will be teaching the kids how to cook (which I’m so excited about!) and this weekend we will be attempting the Springrolls so I’m hoping that it goes well!

At Camp Endeavor we strive to introduce the kids to new and different foods as well as “whole” foods that they may not be accustomed to at home. Nothing makes me happier than kids learning that healthy foods really do taste great. I’m looking forward to a great month, this just may be “the best endeavor yet” – Summer 2009.

eating experiment: part 2

So far so good! I didn’t make it home Sunday for dinner so I am actually down to 2 dinners, 3 lunches (out of the office tomorrow) and 4 breakfasts. I know it doesn’t seem like that many meals and considering that I already have some of the ingredients for 1 of the dinners I do kind of feel like I’m cheating…
Anyway, the taster was a dear and actually went to the store for me since I was out of town (which also could have helped to only get the necessities) but the grand total was… $30.44!!! Yay!
My budget meal last night was a curried quinoa salad that was inspired by the Salad Girl dressings- Curry & Fig that I tried last week.

Salad:
- red inca quinoa
- garbanzo beans
- 1/2 chopped cucumber
- 1 chopped green pepper
- chopped red onions
Dressing:
- 2 Tbsp salad girl curry & fig dressing
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- splash of hot sauce
- salt and pepper
Served over greens and an extra dose of hot sauce for me, it was perfect for a HOT, muggy, summer night!

spring rolls

I must admit, the thought of making Spring Rolls was a bit daunting and I never even imagined that it was possible! That is until I came across a cooking lesson for kids, making what else but Spring Rolls! They were surprisingly easy to make and I will be making these again and again – I think they will be a fun snack to bring to parties as well as teaching the kids at camp. (I start my summer very part-time work this week at a weight-loss camp for kids, so if the recipes seem rather juvenile in the next few weeks I apologize, I have many recipes to test out!) Let’s get onto the rolls!
Here are the “stuffing” ingredients: I had romaine lettuce, pea shoots, cilantro, basil, carrots, cucumbers, radishes and rice noodles.

Here is the taster making a roll.  You literally fill (but not too full) the rice wrappers with the ingredients and roll like a burrito!
The wrappers are soaked briefly in water to soften them up and then ready to be filled.
Here are the finished goods, looking much better than expected. I made a spicy peanut-sauce to go along with them that consisted of peanut butter, lime juice, red chili sauce, garlic and ginger. The perfect spicy ending to a refreshing roll.

eating experiment

As my grocery trips have started getting more and more expensive I wondered how I could reign it in a bit – I know people do this all the time – my parent’s called it an “austerity program” and I didn’t even have the slightest clue on how to spell that, so that tells you how many “austerity programs” I’ve been on in my adult life.  :(  Sorry Dad, I really am trying this time!!!

My problem? I LOVE the grocery store, high-quality, organic food, trying the newest and greatest foods, and oh yes, my love of expensive cheese. So, could I possibly spend $50 a week on breakfast and lunch (for myself) and dinner for two? I will start off easy (Sunday night – Thursday night) so 4 breakfasts, lunches and dinners (only 4 days because I’m at camp on the weekends) and I’m cheating a bit because I already some dinner ingredients that I didn’t use this week. So I’ll aim for $40!
I would love any grocery store budget tips if you have them!