View Full Version : How do you save time when eating?
03-20-2006, 05:56 PM
Seeing that eating and preparing raw foods takes a consisderable amount of time (moreso than eating cooked), I thought it would be helpful (and fun!) if everyone posted some tips or tricks on how to prepare or how to eat efficiently when trying to save time.
For me, I cut my fruit and eat it as I make my salad dressing. I also wash my fruit and get it ready to eat so that when I get back from class I am all set to chow down! Also, I read and eat my salad at the same time, that way I get work done and have plenty of time to chew!
03-20-2006, 06:02 PM
I don't. I am probably the world's slowest eater. I do not like to eat quickly. I never have. It can take me 2 hours to finish a meal, depending on what I'm eating. The only meal I can eat quickly is breakfast. That's usually 1/2 a grapefruit and some pumpkin seeds. Some mornings I feel rushed because I have to get my daughter to the school bus in time. In that case, I'll eat the pumpkin seeds before I leave the house. I only eat a small amount of those and I can easily pop those in my mouth as I go out the door. Then I'll come back and eat the grapefruit after the bus comes. That way I don't feel rushed.
If I have to be out somewhere and will not have time for a real lunch or dinner, then I'll simply eat less. I'll bring along some nuts or seeds and maybe a bit of dried fruit if I feel I need more carbs then. I might also be optimistic and bring a cooler with some cut up raw veggies in the hopes that I might have time to eat those as well.
03-20-2006, 06:26 PM
I ususally stand up and eat doing ten million things at once. I'm on a laptop so I just cart it around. :)
03-20-2006, 06:28 PM
I still find that I spend much less time "uncooking" than cooking food. I always made salads when I cooked and now I just dont have to make the salad AND cook. The longest prep time is when I've decided to make something gourmet and need to dehydrate. Even a quick nut cheese or something to stuff in a lettuce wrap whips up in less than five minutes.
I do save time by washing everything when I first get back from the market. That way when I need to grab a few apples for a meal or snack, they are ready. I wash my greens, fruits and veggies by soaking them in the sink for a bit with some veggie wash and water. I do the organic and conventional produce in seperate batches.
Eating can take longer to chew up all of the raw food but most of it can be grazed over time and I just don't think there is a way to speed that process up. I think its healthier to eat slow.
03-20-2006, 06:42 PM
In the morning, I put various fruit in my shopping bag and take them to work. I eat the fruit all day. No preparation time.
In the evening, I might make something more extravagant. For example
* salad: chop up greens, tomatoes, cucumber, with a dressing made from orange juice and tahini - under 5 minutes
* soup: blend tomatoes and avocadoes, or anything else that I wish for - under 5 minutes
* lettuce wrap: chop up/blend whatever I want and put it on a lettuce leave, roll and eat - under 5 minutes (try blending brasil nuts, hazelnuts, carrot and celery sticks - yum raw fallafel spread)
* smoothie - under 5 minutes
Only during the weekends, when I have more time, I play with some more time-consuming recipes, if I feel like it. I make them mainly for my family, like for example, sweet treats for my kids.
03-21-2006, 12:29 AM
Everything sounds like a combination of what I do haha!!!
Gosia~ I am a fruit lover as well... just can't seem to get enough of God's goodness and all the wonderful things we gave us to eat!
03-21-2006, 06:52 AM
Make lots of fruit and green smoothies and drink them while working at computer. Cleanup is much faster too. Just rinse the blender and cups.
Fruit Smoothie: 2 to 3 cups orange juice, 4 bananas, 1/2 to 1 cup mixed berries.
Green Smoothie: blender full of greens, 1 apple, juice of 1 lime.
And, I buy a case of bananas and oranges at a time -- fresher, organic, cheaper and less trips to the grocery.
Oh, and I try to keep the kitchen area clean and tidy so that when I'm hungry I can quickly rinse some salad leaves or fruit without having to do the dishes first. Plus, I like to keep plenty of fresh fruit on hand for fast food when I'm on the go.
03-21-2006, 07:33 AM
I'm with Dawn on this point. I find that I spend less time overall preparing raw food than I did cooking everything. The prep time is the same, maybe a little longer, but then I'm done, rather than have to wait for things to cook. And the time saved not having to wash pots and pans is also considerable. But then, I mostly used fresh ingredients when cooking before, and not a lot of packaged stuff, so if that's your orientation I can see why it would seem to take longer to you.
My biggest time saving tip is... I make everything I can in bulk, or at the very least in 2 meals worth. It takes practically the same time as making one. My fridge and freezer and pantry shelves all are well stocked with stuff that is ready to eat. That way I have the convenience of eating raw food that is all ready to go whenever I am in a hurry.
The one thing I don't do now is multi-task when I'm eating. I want to be very conscious to my food when I'm eating so that I can focus in on what my body needs, to how it responds to everything so I can fine tune what I am preparing. It's also a time for meditation and relaxation now. When I used to try to catch up on the tv news while I ate dinner it encouraged overeating, because I was unconscious to the food and just shoveling it in. So now I don't do that anymore.
03-21-2006, 11:16 AM
I make everything I can in bulk, or at the very least in 2 meals worth. It takes practically the same time as making one. My fridge and freezer and pantry shelves all are well stocked with stuff that is ready to eat. That way I have the convenience of eating raw food that is all ready to go whenever I am in a hurry.
Shiva could you give me some ideas of the dishes you prepare ahead of time?
Since I was a microwave cooking JUNKIE..i use a lot more prep time now. HOWEVER, i do find it relaxing and nuturing too. I live with my sweet hubby who cooks for himself so I only have to prep for me. That said,it is still work esp since I juice daily. I tend to prep as much as I can the night before and take it with me for work. I also like to eat dinner while watching TV..and relax really chewing slowly.
I think it takes practice to get a system going esp how to have the right amount in the house, have it ripening on time , and the right utensils to make thngs fast. I have 3 veggie peelers,tons of knives, a mini blender, regular blender, juicer, etc you get the deal.
In stores , I try to buy prepacked and washed greens to save time and mini veggies that are easier to tote and eat. I also get disposable dishes so i am not washing tons every night.
03-21-2006, 11:58 AM
I wish my prep time had gone down, I'm now having to cook and uncook! Whew, what a mess :), but my hubby is clueless in the kitchen and since I've been cooking for him for the last 7 years I cannot see telling him that he is suddenly on his own. I could see it if I did, he'd be eating take out all the time or frozen or canned and while my Dr's bills went down his would be going UP! Not to mention that I may not have much of a kitchen left if he started cooking. Hehe!
I do cook/uncook alot in bulk and I try to keep things very simple for dinner as that is when I feel less like dealing with food prep. I do alot of crockpot stuff for the husband and alot of smoothies or easy salads for me at dinner time. I do more complicated stuff on the weekends and for lunch. Lunch is my big fancy high calorie meal anymore. Used to be dinner, but that is something else that has gradually changed over time.
03-21-2006, 12:14 PM
I spend too much time in the kitchen. We are a homeschool family with 3 kids...and they eat cooked food, so I have to cook and uncook :( I try to get my meals prepared before afternoon, so they can either sit in the refrigerator or dehy. alittle while before dinner...dinner seems to be the worst time. I find that this new strategy of having my meal done a few hours early lets me get their meal cooked, and then we can all sit and eat togeher!
Im an uncook /cooker too!
I have always cooked from scratch, i refuse to start oven to table meals for my family , but i must admit, its a bit tempting!
Its the planning that i find difficult.
We are occassionally sharing raw meals now, so thats encouraging!
We all like what comes out of the dehydrator! LOL
03-21-2006, 02:27 PM
I am a total double-tasker. I can't remember the last time I actually sat down and did nothing but eat. In the mornings, I'll pack baggies of fruit and eat them while driving to class, or I'll eat during class, or I'll eat while I study during my breaks. When I get home I nibble on stuff while I answer my emails and check up on my school assignments.
Sometimes I'll eat near my fishtank though, which it pretty relaxing to just watch the fish swim around while I eat :)
03-21-2006, 06:35 PM
Kayla~ are you a student?? Also, I see that u live in Houston!!! I am from houston! When I come home from school we should definitely get together!
JMD~ I know exactly what you mean about getting the hang of predicting when things will ripen at certain times, I now consider myself an expert at it!
03-21-2006, 07:09 PM
I do alot of crockpot stuff for the husband First, when I hear about men who don't cook I just want to go yell at their mothers: "Oh, my, what were you thinking?!?" :)
Ennaways, Susun Weed,, who is best known for her expertise with herbal treatments for menopause symptoms and for general women's health, did a lot of personal research several years ago into various methods of preparing food, and discovered something I found quite remarkable... that an old cooking practice from colonial days and before was superior to any other method for making the most nutritious and bioavailable cooked food. Since you are already going to be cooking for your unraw spouse, you might as well hear about it.
The olden days method was to put cut up food and a liquid into a jug with a tight lid and bury it in the banked coals of the fireplace or on the back of the stove to... well, not simmer, because it never got hot enough to boil... but to sloooooooooowwwwww cook all day. The key point was that a temperature low enough not to boil, but high enough to allay food safety concerns could be achieved with many crockpots today by putting them in the "warm" setting, which is lower than "Low" and then leaving the food there for longer times to achieve the desired tenderness. I dunno, but it seems like that might help you a little in getting hubby moving in the right direction food health wise. It's not raw, but probably better than nothing.
Plus another trick my mom used with all of us kids that worked well... whenever she made something we thought was strange or weird or whatever, she'd load up our plates with stuff we liked and then put on a little bit of one other thing and asked us to just eat a bite or two of it. In time we all learned to eat everything she made that way. Give him a little at a time, and make it fun for him, not a nag, that's my advice.
03-21-2006, 07:50 PM
Well, I was a gourmet chef when I was SAD, and Vegetarian, so actually raw has cut my kitchen time in half at least.
I LOVE to prepare food and be creative, so I don't necessarily look for shortcuts, but people who watch me say I do alot of things they never thought of.
so, I'll list a few, and if they work for you then wonderful.
I put out my almonds and any other nuts to soak each night just before I go to bed, then I know they will be fine until morning, and I'll have what I need for the next day, I set them to the right of the sink, so they are very handy, and the first thing I do after my am shower is to go out and rinse all my nuts, sprouts etc.
I also have any sprouts hanging from jelly or nut milk bags hanging from out cabinet knobs, this makes them easy to see to rinse, and they hang over big bowls to catch the water run off.
with that done, I make a big batch of almond milk every third morning, not just enough for breakfast, I make maybe 6 or 8 cups (this is just for me) then I do the same with any fruit juice I may want that day, I don't make fruit juice for more than one day though.
If I want a nutmilk shake, I've got the almond milk already made, if I want a creamy chowder, the base is already made, if I want juice, it's made, if I want a smoothie or a punch, most of it is made.
when I make pesto stuffed mushrooms, or burger patties or pate' I make 4 times as much as I need or at least double the recipe, then I dehydrate all that in my dehydrators, then place them in baggies and put in the freezer to use later, this makes enough for many servings, and I always have
pesto stuffed mushrooms
burgers (Alissa's meatloaf made into burgers -or carrot pecan burgers)
on hand in the freezer, from these I can make almost anything
and in the fridge, I always have the marinara sauce, and cashew sour cream, salsa, and almond milk
again, for me this works perfectly, because with these stapels, I can whip up almost anything in a few minutes, enchiladas, tacos, tortillas, burritos, spaghetti, lasagna, raviolies, pizza, burgers, tamales, corn chowder, almond milk shakes, these are my favorite foods.
I can take something out of the freezer, and by the time I have the condiments done, the food is done, or near it.
I also always have zucchini for noodles, and fresh greens for salad, I usually use baby spinach which is already washed and cleaned and small leaves--so no cutting or tearing, all kinds of fruit, already soaked nuts and seeds, re dehydrated in the freezer so they are ready to use.
And I have mushrooms, onion, red pepper, carrot, celery, lettuce, greens, olives, almond butter, black sesame seed paste, tahini, olive oil, help seed oil, sundried tomatoes, pickles, garlic, turnips, oranges, bananas, pineapple, kiwi, mineolas, limes, lemons, portobellos, etc on hand.
when I have fruit that is a little too ripe, I clean and cut it and pop into zip lock bags for ice cream or smoothies.
Oh, yes, I also have fruit leather on hand at all times, in the freezer, and my own herbs and spices in the microwave (we use it for herb storage)
I also have all of my kitchen appliances out on the counter so they are easy to use, nothing has to be drug from under a counter, it's just there.
we also have 4 different food prep areas in our kitchen, that are all butcher blocks, so that is nice if we have more than one cook in the kitchen, and each area is for a different task or type of task.
we also bought another fridge and a freezer for the garage, so we always have plenty of room for fresh and frozen foods.
I make flax meal by the 2 cup and freeze so I have it available when needed for recipes (most recipes call for 1/4 to 1/2 cup)and if you buy fresh, it turns rancid quickly.
I make our own sun dried tomatoes from tomatoes garlic and herbs from our gardens, so always have jars of them on hand, we keep them in the fridge.
Basically, we just make sure we have everything ready and on hand so we can make anything we want instantly and easily.
we buy in bulk at Costco or the Farmer's market in our little town, or we grow our own.
I use kitchen sheers to cut alot of things, they work great with peppers, and cutting flax crackers, the enchilada wraps, large leaves, etc.
I have all kinds of little cutters and gadgets which makes life fun and interesting and easy.
a big butcher block helps alot in the center of the kitchen, and lots of lights are a good thing.
We only have one baby window in our kitchen (ah, another remodleing project) so we need alot of light.
We have alot of counter space, but we have alot of appliances on them, so our kitchen seems small to me.
having our fruits and veggies out in big bowls works well for us.
I hang herbs from the walls just for pretty, but we also use them from there too, garlic hangs from the walls, and onions in a muslin bag, sometimes fruit this way too, just hang it up on the wall, and grab one, that is working great, we just started doing this.
We make sure to hang our bananas and away from other fruits, so they won't ripen as fast, and we leave out knives on each cuttin surface to make it easy for a snack.
we have many kinds of nuts in the kitchen freezer so they are handy, but any big bags of things are in the garage freezer for storage.
But, since it hasn't been my focus, I really don't attempt to save time in the kitchen, when I am in the kitchen preparing food, It is a pleasure for me, so I take my time and enjoy it.
This is my life, and I plan on enjoying every single second of it. LOL
maybe tomorrow I will change my mind, and find deep sea diving more enjoyable, but today, it is raw food prep.
03-21-2006, 08:10 PM
Tonight I ate standing up while I was making my dinner:
1 carrot, 3 celery, 1 avacado, 1 head of brocolli, 2 cloves of garlic, sea salt, olive oil put all of that into a FP until smooth then I stuffed it into 3 huge mushrooms - Now at the same time I did this I grilled 2 pork chops on the grill with real butter and sea salt for seasoning a little pepper and some oregano and monitored the sweet corn. My food was done and I was eating it while I was finishing up the SAD meal for my nephew's folks.
I also when I can try to make enough for a couple extra meals so I don't have to worry about not having enough food to eat. :D
03-21-2006, 08:54 PM
I make smoothies first thing in the AM. Drinking down 10-16 oz each morning while prepping clothes, bbies checking email etc...
THen I await my BM, which is so quick now I don't even have time to read while in there. (TMI Ooops!)
I graze on nuts while prepping salads.
I also eat while grocery shopping, then pay as I leave.
03-22-2006, 10:36 AM
The one thing I don't do now is multi-task when I'm eating. I want to be very conscious to my food when I'm eating so that I can focus in on what my body needs, to how it responds to everything so I can fine tune what I am preparing. It's also a time for meditation and relaxation now.
Excellent point Shiva daddy! I was just journaling in my notebook last nite and I laid there thinking what I am doing much differently this time around---as I have been a little off in timing of my meals and last meal (later than I want it to be) so this just struck me like a bolting COMET!
I find this to be true too and a fulfiiling experinece to be mindful of eating as well........soemthing I have neglected lately ;)
03-22-2006, 11:42 AM
I use kitchen sheers to cut alot of things, they work great with peppers, and cutting flax crackers, the enchilada wraps, large leaves, etc.... I have all kinds of little cutters and gadgets which makes life fun and interesting and easy.. Great, great post RP. Thank you!
I like shears a lot too, and use the takeapart kind that separate into two blades for cleaning and sharpening. But I got some new shears recently that don't come apart, but have very redeeming features. The first pair I got were on markdown at the other TJ's... TJMaxx. The were so well made and so cheap (maybe $5?) I couldn't resist. And they were herb shears from Silvermark, with a big wide bottom blade and two slimmer top blades, that double the cuts you get per squeeze of the handle. So the time to cut up a bunch of any fresh herb is cut in half. Very Cool!
Then I found out there is a larger version you can get at places like Bed Bath & Beyond (but for more money, I fergit, 20$ siggghhh) which is used for chopping salads. And you know what, as much of a wizard as I am with knives, and as fine as my kitchen cutlery is, I really find it fun to just dump some greens and veggies in a bowl and just snip* snip* snip* them into a chopped salad. :)
03-22-2006, 06:50 PM
hey rawpriestess... sounds like you've got a great system going! just curious, when you want to defrost all that frozen food.. how do you do it? do you just throw it in the dehydrator??
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