The other day I was in Los Gatos at Sur la Table, and a certain kitchen gadget caught my eye: the Misto olive oil sprayer. Misto is a refillable canister which can be hand-pumped to produce a fine mist of oil. After a week of using Misto, I am quite impressed with its performance and would recommend it to anyone who uses olive oil in home cooking. Here’s how it went:
I filled my Misto with olive oil and pumped feverishly until I felt too much resistance to continue. It is a pretty easy process, but after a while can get a bit tiresome. (You pump the Misto by pushing the cap up and down over the canister) If you have enough will to pump the Misto totally, the charge lasts for a few meals. Otherwise, you have to pump it each time you apply a mist. Overall, the pumping is the worst aspect of the Misto, but not enough to turn me off in comparison to all its positive benefits.
I like using the Misto to lubricate pans and baking dishes before cooking with them. The Misto produces a mist that works just as well as Pam or any other kitchen spray, but doesn’t have an unnatural taste or residue like those store-bought mists. I will even use the Misto to top broccoli or pasta instead of tossing the food with oil, as the coverage tends to be a lot lighter and even. I don’t really eat salad, but I imagine that the Misto would be an awesome substitute for too-rich vinegarettes if you added some balsamic to the salad and then sprayed a light layer of Misto over the dish.
I have begun to use the Misto almost daily in my cooking, and I feel like it has improved my diet a lot. My foods are less oily and taste fresher and crispier as left overs. I also can appreciate the money Misto saves by using less oil and saving me from buying cooking sprays. I am not sure if other oils can be used in the Misto, but it would be worth trying out. For about $10, I think the Misto is a great buy in all aspects.
Live Green. We hear this catch phrase tossed around so often these days. But until a few days ago, living green only meant recycling and biking to work for me. I never knew that applying this statement to every aspect of my life could be so rewarding and easy, until my first nutrition consultation with Jocelyn last week.
Going in, I was a little nervous about letting my employer in on my history of dietary indiscretions, picky eating habits and lack of exercise. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the baby steps Jocelyn was willing to take with me.
Despite the fact that there are only about 4 or 5 vegetable which I will really eat, Jocelyn had a world of information on how to incorporate these, and other not-as-nasty-as-I-thought greens into my diet. We found ways to work greens into my morning routine through treats like broccoli pancakes and sweet beet smoothies. She also taught me that a little spinach goes a long way, but does not add any “green” flavor to smoothies or shakes. Getting my daily dose of greens as early as possible really helps sustain my energy and health throughout the day, even if I don’t get a chance to eat another serving later.
Before my nutrition consultation, I was scared of the word, color and taste of green in reference to food. But now I realize that there are so many ways to get this important food group into my daily routine without much effort at all. Little by little I am living greener everyday. I even tried kale for the first time yesterday, and to my surprise, it really wasn’t that bad.
Sometimes I think we forget that we live in Santa Cruz. Not in a medically concerning way, but in a getting caught up with life and bills and work kind of way. We forget that the air we breathe is that little bit cleaner and crisper than most folks. We forget that wildlife still gets to be wild around us. We forget that the epic and enamoring Pacific Ocean is right on our doorstep.
This afternoon I felt the walls closing in on me at home and so I stepped out into the lovely warm sun and wandered toward West Cliff. Being a Tuesday it was not jammed with weekend cyclists and tourists, so I strolled peacefully along the coast. I thought about lots of little things and made plans for the rest of the day. It was calm at sea so instead of watching surfers battle it out for the next wave, I watched two guys goof around in kayaks. At the surf museum I sat on a bench and listened to the sea lions honk. A man wearing a shirt that looked like it used to be a curtain in a Hawaiian breakfast diner made me smile. And then I walked home.
All in all I probably spent 40 minutes escaping the same old routine and thinking back over it tonight, it was the best part of my day. I’m promising myself to do it more often. After all it’s the summer. We should all be soaking up Santa Cruz!
So Jocelyn and I are at the downtown farmer’s market on Wednesday (which is our regular Wednesday date now for more than 12 years!) a little later than usual because Jocelyn’s 4:00 p.m. client had called to say she couldn’t make it. No sooner had we approached our first stand when Dana calls and tells Jocelyn that her 4:00 p.m. client is there and ready for her appointment!
So, we finished up at Route One (thanks Ora) with carrots for juicing and green plums for devouring and headed back to NOURISH. Jocelyn goes in with her client and I am left to fly solo at the market.
Particularly in the summer having two of us is great. Not just because Jocelyn looks awesome in her summer attire, but also because there is such a bounty to gather and return with. So I gather the bounty myself: two bags full of onions, peppers, tomatoes, avocado, etc. and 1 full flat of Frog Hollow peaches, nectarines (white and yellow) and apricots.
I’ve got the smaller of the 2 bags on top of the 10 lb+ flat of fruit, which I am carrying in both arms like an offering, and the larger of the two bags over my left shoulder. Sure the bags and box are heavy, but that is not my dilemma.
My dilemma is that I am a yogi. So after years of practice my shoulders have a natural inclination to NOT hunch, which means one of the straps of the large bag is falling off my left shoulder and I’ve got all this ridiculously beautiful if not fragile fruit in my arms. Luckily, I’ve seen hunched shoulders, so had some idea how to do it and safely transported all the produce back to NOURISH.
Luckily for me, Jocelyn was the one who had to bring all that stuff home.
It’s been such a great morning! I just finished consultations with fantastic clients who are motivated to transform their health. It is so great to see people get excited about having a new list of healthy groceries to buy, breakfast menus to try, and energizing snacks to carry with them on the go. Though our sessions are packed with information, I remind people of the easiest way to improve their nutritional well-being-one bite at a time.