Show me your fridge and I'll tell you who you are...
It could sound weird, but I have to admit I love looking at other people's grocery baskets at the till or their own fridges at home. This is my way of stalking :)
Like the eyes are the mirror of the soul, your fridge is the mirror of your health.
What you choose to put in your fridge (as well as your kitchen cupboards) will determine how you cook, what you eat and how much you waste.
My fridge is not faultless: it can be messy and with molded celery sticks at the back, which I bother to throw away once a month.
Only recently, I have decided to organize it a little bit better. By sorting things into order, I have become more aware of what has to be used quickly before it is too late. I try to buy a bit less and use up as much as I can before my next trip to the grocery store. This means a little more creativity in the kitchen, but usually salads, soups or frittatas are a good way to "clean up" the leftovers in the fridge.
I have also found out that by making it tidy, clean and decluttered food is stored better, lasts longer and less is wasted.
So, "What's in your fridge, then?" you'll wonder...
Depending on the seasons and my current cravings (yes, although not pregnant, I still have cravings), my fridge looks different, but generally these items never miss on the shelves and I'll explain you why...
It is good for you, because it nourishes and replenishes the good bacteria in your gut. Did you know that 70% of your immune system depends on your gut's health? If your gut is healthy and well nurtured, so is your body's defensive system. Examples of fermented food I love: miso, sauerkrauts or the spicy kimchi. You can marinate any meat, fish or tofu with miso and soy sauce or take your lunch sandwich to another level by adding some sauerkrauts or kimchi if you don't mind the heat.
Non dairy milks
We aren't dairy intolerant, but I like to mix things up. I have noticed that too much dairy can cause breakouts to my skin so I swap milk with a non dairy alternative. Unfortunately, here in the US it is very hard to find a natural non dairy milk without the additions of thickeners, carrageenan (which can cause cancer) and other unreadable ingredients. Due to time and convenience, I still buy these milks, but I also make them at home sometimes. If you don't have the time to make your milks at home (it is very simple, but I understand not everyone wants to) I encourage to rotate 2 or 3 different brands and types of non dairy milk.
Although cow's milk is a little harder on my system, organic full fat yogurt is a staple in my fridge. I prefer to offer goat's milk products to baby Grace as goat's milk has less lactose than cow's making it more digestible. Besides, it tastes better, in my humble opinion.
We use yogurt as afternoon snack and after dinner's dessert in alternative to ice cream. I agree it is not the same thing, but it definitely quench the desire of cold creaminess. We pair it with fresh fruit and a dollop of homemade nut butter of any sort. Grace loves it with some mashed banana and a little of peanut butter.
Homemade, German style (rye) or sprouted: these are the types you'd find in my fridge. Until I live, there will be always some bread in this household. Not many people do, but I like storing mine in here because it lasts a lot longer, especially during the hot season. Homemade bread is delicious and soon there will be a post on the one I make (mommy-friendly, of course!). The sprouted type is meant to be gentle on digestion because of how the grains get processed. In absence of this, I buy rye bread which is very compact without yeast which can cause bloating. We love a slice of bread with avocado or fresh tomatoes for breakfast or a quick lunch. Besides, it's a great take out snack for Grace when we are out and about.
Organic always. Pasture raised when possible. Typically, organic and pasture raised eggs are the most expensive type, however, I do taste and see the difference. Since we have cut down on meat and fish (for health and financial reason - who lives in Los Angeles understands how expensive organic produce is), buying a dozen eggs for $8.00 is actually a bargain. One night at week we have a good old frittata with 4 eggs packed of grounded flaxseeds, which are full in Omega 3s and add volume, and veggies close to expiration date. Poached eggs are also a big favorite for quick lunches with some bread and avocado.
I make these all the time and I change every week the nuts I use, so that we don't become oversensitive to a specific ingredient over time. Although there are some good brands out there with only guaranteed ingredients, I still prefer making mine and save some money. The hazelnut spread is a good example of how delicious and simple they are to make.
Nuts have a good amount of fats and proteins and they are perfect for children to get the nutrients they need.
Onion, carrots, zucchini, aragula (rocket) and avocado. When I feel like doing something super quick but still want to hit my colorful 5 a day rule, I chop and stir fry one onion, one or two carrots and a couple of zucchini with some tamari sauce and ginger. Or I roast them. Aragula and avocado are also great paired together for a detox type of salad. More often than not, there are more veggies, but the ones mentioned are there almost all year round.
They are a delicious touch to any dish. I store them with their stalks in a glass of water to make them last longer. Parsley and basil are probably the ones I buy the most. Basil is super versatile: in soup, salads or blitzed with some olive oil, garlic and lemon to make a delicious pesto.
Wine and beer
Because we are all human after all. I am not a heavy drinker, because it gives me rashes straight away, but I do think that a bottle of wine and few cans of beer make a fridge look pretty and festive and it reminds me that eating healthily means also balance. Leon and I would have a glass over the weekend as our little treat while watching a movie. This is how we roll as parents these days!
Obviously, this is not meant to be a comprehensive list of what's in my fridge. I don't mention meat or fish, because I tend to freeze those and thaw them on the day I cook them.
Choose a handful of healthy staples to have in hands all the time and you'll see the big impact it'll make in your cooking for you and your loved ones.
P.S.: Yes, there is a Lindt chocolate bunny behind a fig jam jar...it has been there since April and not even touched. I'm waiting for my dad who will help "clean" the fridge even further. And those three bottles of prosecco? We celebrated Grace's first birthday few weeks ago and those bottles are still from the party. Just wanted to make few points clear!