A quick and easy dinner

I’m back on the wagon. The diet wagon. It’s not always fun, especially as all my thoughts are on my future, and that future (hopefully) involves me working in the world of food. As soon as I have a free minute or find myself on my computer with nothing to do, I go straight for my favorite food blogs and sites. I have an Evernote notebook chocked full of recipes that I’m dying to try, but unfortunately most are incompatible with losing weight. So, I stock them away and save them for another day, and while I dream of coffee cake and caramel, lime squares and home-made french fries, I have to try to balance these things with protein-rich and (fairly) low fat dishes.

It’s not like I’ve been completely off the wagon lately. I’ve managed to keep off the few pounds that I lost a couple of months ago, which is a big part of this diet. Actually stabilizing the weight that is lost, and thus helping to keep it off for good. I’m working on finding a way to eat what I want most of the time, and to control the damage the rest of the time. Right now, for example, I’m anticipating Thanksgiving. It’s the one day of the year that I really just want to go crazy, making and eating several desserts and potato dishes and whatnot even though there are only two of us. I just can’t help it. Even though we’ll have two guests this year, four people don’t really justify an entire table covered in food. But hey, it’s Thanksgiving. I can’t minimize it just because my family’s not here to enjoy it with us. Continue reading

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Diet highlights

Phew. I’ve been trying to take photos of what I’ve been making, because I’m pretty proud of how I’m handling the diet. Last time, I got bored pretty quickly. This time, I find myself thinking, “If this is all it takes to lose weight, I’ll never be fat again!” The little things like replacing crème fraîche with its reduced fat version seem to be making a huge difference for my metabolism, and a very, very slight one for my taste buds.

It’s been just over four weeks, and I’m nearly five kilos down. It’s going great, and I’m really excited to keep it going, and to get back to where I was a year ago. And maybe even go further! So, here’s what I’ve been up to…

This tandoori chicken was amazingly good. I used my new mortar and pestle that I bought in Skopje to crush up three cloves of garlic and a handful of cardamom seeds. I added in a good helping of cayenne pepper, sea salt, tandoori spices, paprika, lemon juice, cumin and who knows what else… Then mixed my spice mix into some fromage blanc nature (0% fat, of course!) and let my chicken marinate for about 30 minutes before throwing it on the grill. The kebabs were served with fresh onion slices, lemon and a delicious sauce made from fromage blanc, oven roasted garlic, loads of fresh mint and black pepper, and a little lemon juice (this sauce was leftover from my beetroot fries earlier in the week, which were amazing!). It was divine! Continue reading

Spicing it up

I am officially on day 13 of my redo Dukan diet, and doing just fine, a part from a little fatigue. I think the key to this being a success is spending time in the kitchen. When I hear the word protein, I immediately think of omelettes, meat and yogurt. Yes, but not only. Eating these things day in and day out would be monotonous, but how do I adapt my daily go-to recipes to my dieting constraints?

I’ve figured that out, and while eating 1 1/2 pork chops without any side dish is still kind ofsad, at least my pork chops were kick-ass (three times in a row; my grocery store was having a sale!). I can’t really post a recipe, because I don’t really have one. I combined several that I found on epicurious and added and omitted depending on the ingredients, quantities and especially the spices. Curcuma, piment, curry, ginger, cumin… of course paired with fresh lime juice, sometimes soy sauce, a fair amount of salt and pepper, and always applied as a dry-rub.

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Bad timing

Leave it to me to start this blog just a few days before plunging myself into the self-inflicted frustration that is a diet. I knew it needed to be done, but between pushing back my start-date because of visitors, or improvised vacation and convincing myself that I hadn’t gained that much weight, I managed to trick myself into thinking that now was the perfect time to start writing about all the delicious food I was making on a regular basis.

I do have my reasons, though, for starting this blog when I did, so I will do my best to keep it alive, throughout the protein-rich wrath of Dr. Dukan over the next few months. If I no longer have a job next June and suddenly need to put my food-related plan into action, it would be a very good idea to have some published material, and maybe even fans before I do it. So here’s to hoping that I can mix things up while depriving myself of all that is good: sugar, carbs and fat. Cross your fingers, and updates to come!