So, I’ll admit that I am a total food network/travel channel junkie. For a fat kid like me, it pretty much borders on torture when I stare down the horrendously beautiful options presented to me on Man v. Food and Cupcake Wars, knowing that I will not be eating any of that terrible goodness. My usual dinner is a lot more reserved than the 5 lb. hamburger and cheese-coated glory that I see on TV. The five pounds of beefy goodness are scaled down to a lone turkey burger, often accompanied by steamed broccoli or some green beans. Don’t get me wrong, I like these foods too, but sometimes you just want to be bad.
My sick obsession with food on TV reminds me of a passage from Breakfast of Champions, one of Vonnegut’s many masterpieces, where science-fiction writer Kilgore Trout imagines an astronaut arriving on a distant planet where people consist on bland food made of petroleum and coal, and the population’s definition of “dirty movies” is drastically different than ours.
“They asked Don if dirty movies were a problem on Earth, too, and Don said, “Yes.” They asked him if the movies were really dirty, and Don replied, “As dirty as movies could get.”
This was a challenge to the humanoids, who were sure their dirty movies could beat anything on Earth. So everybody piled into air-cushion vehicles, and they floated to a dirty movie house downtown.
It was intermission time when they got there, so Don had some time to think about what could possibly be dirtier than what he had already seen on Earth. He became sexually excited even before the house lights went down. The women in his party were all twittery and squirmy.
So the theater went dark and the curtains opened. At first there wasn’t any picture. There were slurps and moans from loudspeakers. Then the picture itself appeared. It was a high quality film of a male humanoid eating what looked like a pear. The camera zoomed in on his lips and tongue and teeth, which glistened with saliva. He took his time about eating the pear. When the last of it had disappeared into his slurpy mouth, the camera focused on his Adam’s apple. His Adam’s apple bobbed obscenely. He belched contentedly, and then these words appeared on the screen, but in the language of the Planet: THE END.”
And that’s just it: bad food makes me feel dirty. It feels so good when I put it in my mouth, but then I hate myself for days because I know I could do better. It feels like I got walked in on in the middle of… an adventure…
However, as much as I hate myself for cheating every now and then, I think that I would never be able to stay motivated in working out if I was also on a stringent diet where I wasn’t allowed to eat anything. Knowing that I can cheat now and then, and still stick to my work-out plan and get right back on track eating semi-healthy afterwards, makes me feel like I’ve really gotten somewhere. I also love finding healthier versions of things I love like frozen yogurt instead of ice cream or turkey burgers instead of ground beef patties.
My compulsive watching of Cupcake Wars today reminded me of these delicious muffins I made last week. A healthier substitute for cupcakes or sugary store-bought muffins, I call them Cherry Berry Oatmeal Muffins. I modified the recipe I found here, which was for strawberry muffins, and I added blueberries and some fresh cherries to the mix. They were delicious, and even though they aren’t loaded with sugar and butter, they totally satisfied my craving for something sweet.
So, if you want something tasty, take a stab at these muffins. This recipe makes about 24 muffins. They turn out pretty moist and last about 4-5 days before they start to look a little sketch.
- 2 1/2 c. flour
- 2 1/2 c. oats
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 c. applesauce (I used the strawberry flavored kind)
- 1 c. fruit puree (pitted cherries, blueberries, strawberries)
- 1 c. buttermilk
- 3/4 c. honey
- 3 tbsp oil
- 2 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups chopped fruit (pitted cherries, blueberries, strawberries)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Coat muffin pans with canola oil cooking spray or line with paper cups. (should make about 24 muffins)
- Combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl, and set aside.
- Mix together the next 7 ingredients (applesauce through egg) with a whisk.
- Mix the wet and dry ingredients together, stirring until moistened. Gently mix in the chopped fruit.
- Spoon batter into prepared muffin pans.
- Bake for about 18-22 minutes.
Hope these muffins help to satisfy your sweet tooth; you won’t feel guilty being walked in on with these muffins.