Tips For the Conscious Eater On Cooking In the Age of Coronavirus – WDET

Posted: April 3, 2020 at 2:51 am

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Houseboundduring coronavirus-related shutdowns,many Michiganders may be donning their chef hats, maybe for the firsttime.

But the art of whipping together a delectable dinner using ingredients on-handisnt easy, and staying healthy and preserving food while doing it is evenharder.

Sophie Eganis the author ofHow To Be A Conscious Eater. She says theres two crises society facestoday.

Theres alack of food literacy and confidence in the kitchen, and this is understandable. - Sophie Egan,author

Cristin Young


Above all Ithink what the virus shows us is how interconnected we are as aglobal community, says Egan, The climate crisis is also an emergency, [even though]its slower moving and may beharder tosee.

But, she says people have an opportunity to meet these challenges: three times a day. For Egan,the three biggest things anyone can do to eat consciously are to waste less, eat a plant-rich diet and support soil healththrough buying organic or regeneratively grownfoods.

But first, Egan says home chefs should switch theirmindset.

Theres alack of food literacy and confidence in the kitchen, and this is understandable, says Egan. Television and social media can make cooking feel intimidating, but it doesnt have tobe.

Egantalks with WDETs Annamarie Sysling about some of the important culinary tips laid out in her book and explains how they can be incorporated into life during the Coronaviruspandemic.

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Egan says the secret ingredient to cooking at home are the ones in you already have inyourpantry.

And when it comes to using processed foods, agood rule of thumb is, do you have that ingredient in your pantry? Egan says, pointing out that when looking at ingredients, its important that you recognize the items listed. If it sounds like a non-food substance, you might want to question consumingit.

To simplify things, Egan, a busy mom, says she prefers working withfive ingredients or less during theweek.

Her second piece of advice:A good knife goes a longway.

Egan notes thata good knife isnt the same as an expensive knife. Just make sure youreworking with a sharp utensil. Itll make a really bigdifference.

Choosing a recipe for a home-cooked meal can present its own challenges. Especially when using prepared, processed foods like a jar of store-bought spaghetti sauce, forinstance.

Egan points out while fewer ingredients on a packaged food label might seem like the best option, sometimes a long ingredient list is okaytoo.

For example, salsa or spaghetti sauce containseveral ingredients, but many are simply spices thatcontribute to texture and flavor. The items in the ingredient list to watch out for are the ones you dontrecognize.

Becauseingredients go in descending order by weight, the first ingredient is the most important, Egan says. For packaged goods, she says youwant it to be a whole, plant-based food you recognize like peanuts oroats.

For canned food, Egan says to pay special attention to the nutrition facts on the label, especially the saturated fat andsodium.

Our pantries are where we spendtime, but Egan says the freezer is an under-utilized,additional storagespace.

Think about our freezers, theres an abundanceof opportunityto make food last longer, shesays.

When shopping,Egan says, frozen organic produce is less expensive and just as nutritious as the fresh option. The same goes for wild-caughtseafood.

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Tips For the Conscious Eater On Cooking In the Age of Coronavirus - WDET

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April 3rd, 2020 at 2:51 am

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