Food resolutions for 2017

photo from Creative Commons

Before I launch into a list of resolutions for 2017, I wanted to review what I resolved to do a year ago.  How did I do?  Here’s the list for 2016:

  1. Cook more meals focused on plant proteins.  Hmmm, not sure I cooked more of those, although I thought about it more.  Don’t good intentions count?
  2. Stay active even in cold weather: yes, definitely did that.
  3. Cook more vegetables in interesting ways.  Again, hmmm.  I think I probably didn’t.  One problem with cooking — decisions can be very last-minute, and when you want something done quickly, you don’t tend to start searching for new recipes.
  4. Prepare more dishes using whole grains.  No, I have to admit, I did not do that one justice at all.
  5. Experiment with more Asian/Indian seasonings.  Again, I didn’t do more experimenting on that.  Doing so would be default have also covered #1 and #3 as well, since those cuisines use more plant proteins and vegetables.

more cheese

Oh darn, I seem to have failed!

Well onwards to 2017.  I think I may need to pare my ideas down a bit if I’m going to be more successful this year.  Here’s one important thing: I’m calling them food resolutions.  Not diet resolutions.  Not nutrition resolutions.  It’s about food.

  1. Eat more eggs.  This is pretty specific and there are nutritional reasons for more eggs: choline, high quality protein, versatility, convenience.  The only problem is that grocery store eggs are just not as good as the wonderful local organic eggs I find at the farmer’s market in summer.
  2. Cook vegetables in more interesting ways.  This includes more Asian/Indian recipes.  I’m going to do it this year, definitely!
  3. More cheese.  Specifically, more cheese as a snack or as part of a meal.  Grated on salads, served with soup and bread, melted on a casserole or pizza.  And more interesting cheese.  I love hard cheeses like Manchego.  They have wonderful flavor, so you don’t need to use a lot.  Nutritional benefits: calcium, protein and in some cases, a form of vitamin K that affects calcium metabolism in a good way.
  4. Try some really unusual and unfamiliar recipes or foods at least once.  Such as socca, a traditional Italian flatbread made with chickpea flour.  I tried some new recipes over the holiday.  Well, they were cookie recipes, but they were interesting, and some are keepers.
  5. More soup!  Recently a house guest expressed a desire for tomato soup, of which I had none.  So I looked up a recipe, got out the ingredients, or found substitutions, and whipped up tomato soup.  It was surprisingly easy to do, as long as you have a blender.  But it made me think of how nice soup can be for a meal, especially in winter.  But summer can also be a great time for refreshing cold soups like gazpacho or cold fruit or vegetable bisques.  Plus soup is a great way to use up produce sitting around in your frig, which helps reduce food waste.

more soup

The general theme: cooking.  A theme that a lot of people are using in their own 2017 lists.  I asked my dietetic interns for their 2017 food and nutrition resolution ideas and here are a couple suggestions:

Brooke Tresch

This year, my New Year’s resolution is to learn to enjoy the art of cooking. After a long work day, the last thing I want to do is cook a meal. In order to make cooking more enjoyable, I plan to:

  • Plan meals ahead of time in order to avoid several trips to the grocery store during the week
  • Suggest to friends that our next social hour be a potluck at my house instead of a night at a restaurant or bar
  • Turn on music and light candles to create a more fun, relaxing environment in the kitchen

Sara Scheler

A food resolution I would recommend to the general public: Cook at home more often! Meals you prepare yourself tend to be healthier and sharing home-cooked food with family and friends is a great way to relax and bond over the busy holiday season.

So cooking is definitely the theme of 2017.  What if you don’t have great kitchen skills?  No worries.  Lots of companies are now making meal kits, which let you do a little bit of cooking, but do most of the food prep for you.  Who knows, using food kits might inspire you to learn more about kitchen basics.  Happy Cooking!

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