25 Oct 2013

changing palates

Casting my eyes over the plate I see a colourful landscape - the sauteed kale, the quinoa salad, the nuts and the seeds. Not so long ago my nose would have crinkled at the offerings before me and devoid of chemical "sprucing up" my palate would have revolted. Whilst our diet was never heavily reliant on processed items we had a handful of pre- prepared favourites that always made the top spot on the weekly menu.  There was the saccharine sweet devilled sausage sauce mix, the enchilada and fajita kits and that ever present sprinkle of chicken stock powder for taste bud punching flavour.  My Mum's spaghetti and meat balls* recipe which I followed to the letter was never complete without the ubiquitous tin of Rosella tomato soup.

But when we decided to overhaul our diet and chose a path of food as nourishment and even medicine we abandoned these "staples". The fallout was not pleasant as we detoxed.  Without the crutch of synthetic flavour enhancers to prop them up our meals tasted bland and unappealing and we longed for the zippedy-zing we had so enjoyed.  I cursed as meals of labour burdened with unfamiliar ingredients (and their equally unfamiliar cooking methods) were scraped into the bin. In order to keep the fire of change burning we consulted our favourite wholefoods literature time and time again. And we kept talking. It certainly was a time of much reflection and discussion.

Slowly and steadily our palates changed. Taste buds that had laid dormant, cloaked under a haze of chemical over stimulation, began to blossom. Nature's bounty began to not only nourish but excite and our meals evolved to spreads of wholesome ingredients chosen for their closeness to the earth. It was a journey fraught with potholes and "wrong way, go back!" signs and navigating the plethora of new ingredients was tedious at first. But time in all her gentle yet firm manner as always knew best and ever so gradually the cooking and preparing rhythms emerged, the recipe file grew fatter and our palates evolved. We still have many paths to get lost on but I am so pleased we have persevered this far.

Are you on a life changing mission? How do you keep on track?

Steph x

Other posts following our Wholefoods journey - 
olive oil dough
growing a kitchen

* this is our "go to" recipe for spaghetti and meatballs now.


  1. Oh Steph! This post mirrors my recent journey so closely. We recently did a whole month of purely unprocessed, natural food. Some days were definitely harder than others but goodness I feel absolutely incredible! So completely wonderful you're experiencing the same thing! x

  2. This is something I move towards and then again away from, as the seasons of my life change. As a working mum I find I've become too reliant on the quick fixes and crave my old whole foods manifesto... some days are better than others. A well-stocked freezer for tired after-daycare days are my dream, as is the time to cook and stock it! I feel like food is something that not only nourishes but brings joy and satisfaction, and it shouldn't be fast and easy. I commend you for making the choice and the transition - it's very inspiring!

  3. I love the notion that if our grandparents or great grandparents didn't eat it then neither should we. I try to bear that in mind when preparing our meals and snacks. When we have sweets and treats they are usually things I've baked or I've purchased from a local trusted bakery. No sauces or things from jars. Just regular normal food with lots of herbs and spices and basic ingredients. It does become easier. And hey there are treats but they are carefully selected.

  4. It's so hard, isn't it? I actually find I really crave those old foods. Still detoxing I guess. And I understand completely about food scraped into the bin. I know I will get it but it just hard now seeing the food go to waste.

  5. so true, i think it takes time to get used to meal planning, cooking and of course, eating (!!) whole foods. we're still on our way x

  6. Such truth here. I find that the best cure (as I'm sure you know) is keeping all other options out of the house. When they're here they're eaten and often in a binge way! So we don't buy sweets, chips etc and they're not eaten. It also means things like dates or nuts become the snacks and sweets you crave! :)
    Thanks for sharing your journey x

  7. Yay! Wholefoods are the best : ) I really know no other way (hippie vege growing mostly vegetarian parents to thank for that) ~ food is such a gift, and organic simple wholefoods is indeed medicine in every way ~ keep enjoying your journey lovely Steph, you're instincts seem spot on : ) xx

  8. 'Cooking from scratch' as I like to call it, is so rewarding. Our pantry is less full as our fridge overflows with fresh produce.

  9. Lovely post Steph. Oh gosh it's a never ending journey I think - however I feel rather at home at where we are now. Thanks for the link to my recipe - my nonna's ricotta ball recipe will be in the cookbook.....perhaps you would like to be a recipe tester? I'm about to send them out.....xx

    1. I would so love to test your delicious recipes! We adore the meatballs...divine!! Hope all is lovely with you xx


Your words brighten my day! Thank-you so much for joining me on my adventure. x