Whole Grain Goodness. For people, too.

If only our dietary crimes were limited to the pizza problem. We are also fiercely devoted to the simple carb in almost all its forms; primarily bread and pasta. Any night that a frozen pizza is not in the oven, you can almost guarantee that I will be serving pasta with one of two sauces and, of course, some yummy crusty store-bought bread (with way more than five ingredients, plenty of them unpronounceable).

In her book, Cheap Eating, Pat Edwards says: There are probably more chances to save money in buying breads and cereals than in any other area. Store variety white bread is cheaper than firm, brown bread. That's because it's 90 percent air! Try taking a piece of fresh white bread and compress it into a ball in your hand. That's what happens to it in your digestive system. It's about as healthful as play-dough or wallpaper paste."

Yesterday, I attempted to address the bread issue by not only baking a homemade whole wheat bread but also grinding whole wheat berries into wheat at home for the bread (love my Vita-Mix!). It just does not get any fresher or more healthful than that.

Despite the cookbook's warning that baking real whole wheat bread is a challenge, every step went smoothly. The finished product came out of the oven smelling heavenly and looking exactly like the photo in the cookbook. My hubby cut each of us a piece when the bread was still warm from the oven with just a little melted butter.

My dog stared longlingly at me while I ate mine. Eleanor is a retriever and will eat pretty much anything whether or not it is actual food, but she was really focused on this bread. This overt begging was strange as she normally displays superb dog-manners.

The bread was definitely firm and brown. Dense, but not unlikeable. It reminded me of something else and I just could not place it. I kept eating and my pooch kept staring. I had just the very last bite left in my hand when it hit me. The bread is dense and brown and with just one corner left of it, well, it looked and (yep, there it is!) smelled exactly like my dog's Iams Large Breed dog food. It was really only missing the crunch.

I kept this thought entirely to myself as my kid was really enjoying the bread. She liked it a lot, actually. I made us both eggs and toast with it this morning and she asked for me to make her a PBJ with it for her lunchbox today.

I think for lunch today, I will slice it thin and serve it with light cream cheese, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers. Oooh, or maybe a slice of mozzarella with sliced tomatoes and fresh basil.

Either way, it is sure to be Eleanor-approved!