Saturday, March 10, 2012

My Journey to healthy living

I was diagnosed with stage 1 hypertension after giving birth to my youngest son 6 years ago and I've been on medication since. I was placed on a diet during my pregnancy due to GDM (gestational diabetes mellitus) and continued doing so even after giving birth. However, after about two years of eating only sardines and brown bread, I went back to the "pigging" loop with a vengeance. Although the merits of getting lean was faster, it also increased the risk of craving for normal food again. And that's what happened. 7 years in the call center industry and 175 pounds later, I still saw myself thin whenever I looked at the mirror. Back then I would always wonder whether Anorexia Nervosa had an opposite. Whereas, I see myself thin (as my mind perceives me to be) in reality I was already this glob of lard. Whaaa! (borrowing from Sen. Miriam Defensor) hahaha

I realised this when we went back to the Philippines for a vacation. We had a mini reunion with former officemates. And of course as part of the reunion, everyone brought their spectacular cameras. What I saw once they showed me our photo went me reeling. I was like "Whoa!!! Is that me already?!" Hence, I started slow and when we came back here, started buying more veggies and fruits. I also started eating less rice, less carbo. The sweets, well, have conveniently placed themselves in my food pyramid. But instead of eating 1 normal serving, my daughter and I split it in half.

I have already accepted and embraced the fact that cooking and baking is something I am very passionate about. But it can also mean that I am at the liberty of concocting and experimenting with food. I crave for healthy food these days. It is also one way of making sure that my kids learn the value of eating more veggies than carbo and red meat. 

So am sharing with you a dish which I made, that already has a little of everything but big on veggies. Am having trouble using the separate tab for my recipes. Hence, I am going to share it here on my main page. I call this recipe my "Dulce Amantes". For this recipe, you'd need the following:

Dulce Amantes
1 medium Butternut pumpkin, boiled and mashed
1 big potato, boiled and mashed
1/4 cup non fat milk
ground pepper
salt to taste
cottage cheese or any cheese of your choice.

For this dish, I was not able to use cottage cheese, as I have lots of unused cheddar. I melted the cheddar cheese with a little milk to make it easier to pour.

1. Boil pumpkin and potato until soft. This makes them easier to mash. 
2. Combine the two in 1 big bowl and pour the non-fat milk. Season with salt and ground pepper.
3. Transfer to a glass or baking tray, flatten it with a spatula and pour the cheese mixture over it. Top it with grated cheese and bake until golden brown. This is if you choose to use cheddar cheese, otherwise just top it with Cottage cheese and bake for about 3-5 minutes.

This is such an easy dish to make and am sure your family would love. My kids just enjoyed my Dulce Amantes. I call it such because of the sweet natural flavor of the butternut pumpkin and the potatoes. Like lovers embracing each other, both containing proteins and minerals that are good for the body.

Tomorrow, I will be sharing my recipe for my Mama Mia meatballs :)

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