Friday, March 18, 2016

Dietary Restrictions? Caregiving Cooking. Homemade Soup is Souper.

I'm posting on soup because it is one of my favorite things to eat; but also my sister had to go to ER for kidney/gall stones this week. As someone who likes a lot of flavor, I have not really known what to prepare for meals. Her diet is pretty restricted to fruits and veggies, perhaps a very small portion of boiled chicken. No fat or greasy foods, no dairy, etc. Still trying to figure it all out. I had prepared a nice meal, just taken it out to serve and that's when her attack came on. So off we went. Was glad I was here to get her there quickly, it is extremely painful and she was vomiting. I have no idea what would have happened if I was not here, not sure she could have even called 911 since she was completely doubled over in anguishing pain.

The first soup I made for her was pretty much water broth with veggies, although I did add some carrot juice to pop in a bit of color and flavor. She is not a big fan of thyme, or I might have tried adding in a few sprigs. I boiled the chicken in with the mix. you can see in the photo, there was fat in the broth. It did not dawn on me to cook them separately. I have never boiled chicken, or thought about the fat rendering out.

The next attempt, I boiled the chicken only in water with a little carrot juice and drained off all the liquid. This was a much better solution and the chicken came out clean. That way she can add it to anything she wants. Salad, soup, stuff it into a lettuce cup or a small bell pepper. The real key is very small portions.

Next was the sliced baked potato, spicy chicken and vegetable casserole I had made. I could have frozen it or offered it to neighbors, but I just ate it for every meal until it was gone. By the last few servings I was getting pretty tired of it. As I do with other food, I finally turned it into soup. Oftentimes I just add water and everything simmers nicely. I don't overcook vegetables, so heating this up was a quick process. Most of the veggies are still relatively firm even after reheats.

Having dietary restrictions requires some new thinking when you are used to cooking a certain way. It has me rethinking almost everything I eat too. I am already a big label reader, and have changed some of my own eating habits to have a healthier lifestyle. Homemade soup is a good start for anyone. Lentil soup is my favorite. I am not sure if she can eat lentils. As I said, I have a lot to learn about cooking for others who have special needs. In the process, I will learn to be a more mindful cook.

Chicken and vegetable soup with carrot broth

Boiled Chicken

Casserole Remix to Baked Potato Soup with Veggies and Cheese

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