Tuesday, April 29, 2008

0 What's Your Favorite Healthy Snack?

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Today, as I was making up my usual grocery shopping list of last-minute items for my main squeeze to pick up at the local supermarket on his way home from work, it occurred to me that I'm often stumped by his usual question, "So, any snacks you want me to pick up from the store?"

For some reason, I can never think of a good answer unless I'm currently craving something & it happens to pop into my head while I'm compiling this "shopping list." If I'm not currently hungry, sometimes I just can't predict what I'll be in the mood to eat in a few hours or days from now. And I don't want to waste food because I'm not hungry for whatever was purchased or likewise, eat it just because it happens to be sitting there in the cupboard or fridge. :) And furthermore, I've found that when I eat things that I really don't want for one reason or another, it usually doesn't diminish the craving for the things that I actually wanted to eat at the time but didn't have it in the house. :)

Now while I can come up with meal ideas at the drop of a hat, I'm often at a loss when it comes to snacks. It's probably because the bar for my "snack expectations" are set a tad too high. :)

A lot of times it's not so much that I don't know what I want, but rather that I'm doing my best to make healthy choices but also still want to feel "satisfied" by something that tastes yummy. And since a snack is bite-sized & momentary (unlike a meal, which typically lasts a whole lot longer!), it has to live up to a tall order in a short time frame. :)

So, if you've got any good ideas for healthy, tasty snacks, I'd really love to hear them. Thanks!

Some brief "snack" criteria (Yes, I'm kinda picky!):
1. The snack should be something tasty, healthy, & relatively low-fat, or if it's higher in fat content, then it should atleast contain mostly "good fats" (like Omega-3s, etc.), which are typically vegetable or nut-based fats (i.e., mono- & polyunsaturated fats).
2. I'm not really into eating meats for snacks, so please don't suggest them. Thanks! I do eat meat on occasion, but it's mostly a lunch or dinner thing. I think I might've once eaten left-over steak for breakfast (several years ago!), but it was most likely because I'd probably gotten up around lunchtime. I wonder if this was a memory from my days at university. :) At any rate, it's not exactly a recent trend.....
3. I like salty, sweet, sour, & savory flavors, (& often like combinations of these multiple taste sensations) but tend to stay away from things that taste out-&-out bitter. In other words, I won't be eating Bitter Melon again anytime soon. But hey, give me credit, I did try it. :)
4. It'd be great if the snack could be easily portable, but it doesn't have to be.
5. I'm a huge fan of crunchy snacks, but again, the snack idea doesn't have to be crunchy. :) Speaking of which, please don't suggest carrot & celery sticks, rice cakes, or air-popped popcorn. Let's be a bit more creative than that, OK?
6. Also, I don't mind cooking or baking, or an elaborate assembly/preparation. What I'm looking for is something that I can preferably make in advance & eat later as a snack. :) Taste & health are of paramount importance.

I know it sounds like I'm stating a lot of preferences here, but sometimes it's easier to think of ideas when the critera isn't so wide-open. It helps to focus the mind on specifics. :)

So, if you've got any great go-to snack ideas that make your tastebuds scream with delight, now those are the kinds of snack suggestions I'd like to hear!

Thanks so much in advance for your suggestions!

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