Cooking by Color
Confession: I used to be a picky eater. If it looked funny, smelled funny, touched anything else, or was difficult to pronounce, I wanted no part of it. My favorite meal kept it simple -- pot roast, rice, a baked potato and a wheat roll. Nutrition was not my top priority. I was not worried about a balanced diet, vitamins, or minerals.
Now, my mother had only one mealtime rule: We were not allowed to have a plate of foods that were all the same color. Not good for me. Not only was my favorite meal roughly the same thing, nutrition-wise, minus the pot roast, it was also roughly the same color, and therefore not allowed.
But I have always been easily distracted by color. And that’s how my mother tricked me.
My dinner wasn’t approved by mom until I "added color." It wasn’t long before I stopped seeing what I didn't want, eggplant, bell pepper, zucchini, or cranberries in produce aisles. Instead, I saw purple, red, yellow, green, orange, and maroon.
By the time I realized the general idea was "more color = more nutrients," it was too late. I was hooked. Even now, my dinners are rollicking masterpieces of green, orange, white, brown, yellow, purple, maroon, and pink from a bounty of fruits, nuts, seeds, cheeses, berries, veggies, breads, and proteins. Well played, Mom.
The next time you’re in Central Market, see how many different colored foods you can get into your cart, and then into one meal. No matter where you are on your path to becoming a full-fledged foodie, you’ll have fun adding a little art. Besides, if you do it right, you won't have to do any work. Have you seen the colors in our Chef’s Case?