Chickpeas are part of some healthy food choices at home, writes Victor Schukov.
My wife is into home-grown herbs, organic main courses and salads strangled with alfalfa sprouts. She washes it all down with natural eau-de-source which I suspect is nothing but water. I am a former engineer. I drink from a garden hose. We are sometimes at odds over what is healthy for our bodies but she always wins because . . . uhm . . . she’s right.And so it is, when I am closely watched, I am force-fed good food. Dragged screaming to eating well has not only brought me closer to good health, but has expanded my vocabulary with previously uncharted verbiage such as hydroponic, polyunsaturated and chickpeas. (Do they really come from baby chickens?)Given the opportunity (ie. my wife being out of town or just turning her back on me), I will find ketchup to be a perfectly agreeable vegetable and erupt it over all foods from soup to blueberry pie.My wife daintily sprinkles fruits and nuts over many culinary masterpieces. I, on the other hand, holding a Pogo, find that (artificial) soya sauce adds zest to mashed potatoes, quiche and is just great straight out of the bottle. (Thank goodness it has no alcohol.)My wife prepares her own salad dressings to avoid all of those corporate additives. I like to mix random bottled dressings in the hope of discovering a new flavour that does not disgust me. (I usually fail.)My rule of thumb on what is edible is very simple: I try to avoid eating things when I have no idea of what exactly they are. Like the stucco called tofu. Tofu burgers — What kinds of fields do roaming herds of tofu graze in?Occasionally I try to cook something from a book I bought at the dollar store. It’s called, “Easy Recipes for Non-Cooks.” I call it, “The Cook Book from Hell.” My first clue was all the lazy spelling errors. Here is a sample recipe for zucchini:Ingredients: 8 zucchkiniProcedure:Peel the suckhini. Shred the zsukkhini. Place the zzuccchini in a bowl in the fridge. Discover it five weeks later. Throw the zuccckhini out and buy 8 more zukkcchini. (Note: Just for a change, you can bypass steps 1 and 2 and just let the czuhini spoil on its own.)Growing up in an ethnic Russian household, a typical breakfast was fried eggs, fried potatoes, fried pork sausage and heavily buttered toast (of the bleached, processed type).After breakfast, we would all go back to bed and wait for heart attacks.Today, my wife wakes up to fruit. I eat from the jam jar. It’s fruit, no? I am told that one should never mix fruit with dairy. I don’t. I never butter my grapefruit.These days, my house is a caffeine-free zone. The morning beverage of choice is an “enjoyable” substitute made of roasted barley, rye, chicory and beet roots. When mixed with boiling water it tasted remarkably like a steaming blend of roasted barley, rye, chicory and beet root. I drink 12 cups of this paint remover and still can’t lift an eyelid.Fortunately, we have no house rules against dessert except that it must contain no glucose, monocalcium phosphate, artificial colours red 40 and blue 8. So let me see . . . that leaves . . . uhm . . . fruit.Related