I recently paid a visit to one of my favorite places on earth, Lake Martin, Alabama. My memories here begin from childhood of water skiing all day, playing Rook til 1am, dining on country biscuits with honey for breakfast, watermelon on the dock for lunch, and fried catfish and bass for dinner with hushpuppies. In our original lake cabin, we had no phone, no television, no air conditioning, only the radio on which we listened to the show “Chicken Man” on Saturday nights. Perhaps that is where my love of radio stems from. One can never know for sure. On Lake Martin, we would ski all day, fish at night, and laugh so loud we could hear the echos around the lake. The most peaceful place on earth. The most truly relaxing. And, the most beautiful. Those were the good ole days and they still are. The memories carry forward to today eventhough the house is bigger. The bedrooms have real closets in them. We have internet and wi-fi, DISH network, and cell phones. We play cards til midnight instead of 1am and we water ski almost all day long. One thing that hasn’t changed, too much, is the cuisine. We still eat fried okra, fried Lake Martin bass, and hushpuppies… once during our week long vacation. The rest of the time, we dine on sauteed fresh-from-the-garden vegetables, fresh berries, apples, pears, plums, and figs. Even in the south, you can eat healthy. It’s a matter of choice. It comes down to cooking styles and what you put in the foods… healthy olive oils instead of butter. Lower fat ingredient choices like yogurt, greek yogurt, low fat mayonnaise, and fresh, fresh, fresh fruits, vegetables, and proteins that are baked, sauteed, poached… anything but fried.
This particular visit to Lake Martin was to be able to focus on creating new, healthy, flavorful recipes for a new cookbook I was writing. I created recipes for hours and hours and was lucky to enjoy a water ski around the lake for my recipe writing breaks. On one particular day, in the early evening, late afternoon, I went for a ski during my break. I thought I felt bugs pelting into my face and I soon realized it was the rain. Raining when you are skiing feels like needles pounding into every cell of your body. I actually didn’t mind, however. It doesn’t rain so much in California and the rain felt good. I don’t get to water ski in California either. Water skiing felt good.
I love my times at the lake. I love my times in the South. I hope I can help the South embrace healthier foods. The Center for Disease Control in Atlanta finds the South to be the absolute most obese region of the United States. It can’t be all about fried foods and buttermilk biscuits. Obesity is a result of many factors… lack of exercise, lack of desire to exercise, types of foods consumed, quantities of foods consumed, types of beverages, quantities of such… and yes, sometimes genetics come into play. Yet, obesity can be reversed in most cases. Change begins with the mind and the belief that one can change. It is my hope that I can empower others to have the courage to begin to change. And to provide them with the tools and encouragement to help them change.
The Bikini Chef®
Check out Susan’s newest book on Quinoa:
|Subscribe to The Bikini Chef® Blog|
Catch The Bikini Chef® on Bikini Lifestyles “Wine Dine and Workout” on AM 790 KABC radio in Los Angeles Saturday nights, 7pm PT or stream LIVE online at http://www.kabc.com Visit: http://www.bikinilifestyles.com Check your local TV listings for Bikini Lifestyles “Wine Dine and Workout” airings in your town!
The Complete Idiot’s Guide Quinoa Cookbook available for pre-order on Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Idiots-Guide-Quinoa-Cookbook/dp/1615641939/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1337916843&sr=8-1
In stores: July 3rd, 2012