Thursday, January 16, 2014

Stickin' to Plan

Our meal plan is evolving. It's important for both of us that we don't cut calories too drastically, because in both of us that leads to persistent muscle weakness. But the shopping cart is filled with different things than before.

Though it's costing me in back pain and sleep I am cooking again, rather than buying prepared meals from the deli at Sobey's. The weather has been so terrible Ian has shopped for me the last two times, bless him. I did go to the WalMart for cat food and litter and some canned foods while Ian had the flu. My neighbour and I shared a cab.

But it feels good emotionally to be back at the stove, and we had some tasty meals this past week. I never deep fry anything and I've always been conscious of limiting fat when I cook. So I'm not worrying so much about calories in the food I make as eliminating the cookies, candy, ice cream and chips we were snacking on all too often, plus the high fat dishes I was buying at the deli.

When I can cut down on calories and get in some more healthy vegetables I do. When I made salmon croquettes this past week I substituted lightly cooked and coarsely mashed cauliflower for the one and a half cups of mashed potatoes the recipe calls for. The potato has 171 calories, while the cauliflower has only 42. You couldn't tell the difference in taste or texture.

I haven't gotten on the scales but my clothes are a little looser. For breakfast each day I've been making a smoothie with 3/4 c. of frozen fruit, either pineapple/peach/mango or cherry/blackberry/blueberry, a heaping tbs of 1% cottage cheese or Greek yogurt, and a scoop of protein powder that supplies 30 grams of protein, plus enough water to blend. This makes enough for breakfast and a mid-afternoon snack.

I found a recipe I'm going to try for Tony's breakfast, since he is intolerant of whey. He loves oatmeal and prefers it cold, so I am thinking of making this overnight oatmeal for him. I think I'd make three or four days worth, without any fruit, unless I put raisins in it, and just stir the fruit into one serving the night before.

We had a dinner one night that I didn't have high hopes for, as I sort of improvised on the recipe, but it was absolutely delish and I'll make it again this week. No point in giving you the original recipe, I'll give you the recipe as I made it.

Fish Curry

• 1 cup baked potato, diced
• 1 1/2 teaspoons coconut oil, divided
• Pam
• 8 ounces basa fillets, patted dry and coarsely chopped
• 1/2 medium red bell pepper, diced plus 1 tbs diced reserved.
• 1/2 medium onion diced
• 1/2 tsp Mrs Dash's Herb and Garlic seasoning
• 3-4 tbs Thai green curry sauce medium heat

1. Spray cold non-stick skillet with PAM, add 1/2 tsp oil, add diced onions, potato and red pepper and cook over medium heat until onions are transparent and potatoes are beginning to brown. Set aside in bowl.

2. Heat 1/2 teaspoon oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add basa and cook, stirring often, until just cooked through and opaque. Discard any liquid in the pan.

3. Return the potato, onions, and red pepper to the pan with the fish, add the Mrs. Dash's and the curry sauce. Cook until combined and heated through.

4. Plate and top with diced red pepper. Salt to taste.

Now, I'm hungry and am going to go find some lunch!


smm said...

Made a fish stew last week sometime and it was divine. We didn't have what the recipe called for in a couple of instances and it was still just fine...after you cook for any length of time you can generally know what you can and can't do without and what makes a good substitute. Baking on the other hand...way not able to substitute to save my life.

Good for you for embracing cooking again.

Linda P. said...

When I cook my steel cut oats, I divide the portions into five servings. Unlike at your house, I like it piping hot, but I can add my raisins and rice milk in the morning when I wake, before warming it all. I hope making it ahead of time works out well at your house, too.