March 30, 2009 | 43 Comments
“Playwrights are like men who have been dining for a month in an Indian restaurant. After eating curry night after night, they deny the existence of asparagus.”
~ Peter Ustinov
Event Details HERE
Camera: Canon EOS 300D
Lens: 100 mm macro
Shutter speed: 0.3 sec
ISO Speed: 200
DEADLINE: April 30, 2009
If you hang your swimsuit
On the refrigerator door,
The goodies inside
Will be easier to ignore.
~ from The Quote Garden
That, and telling yourself that the less carbs you eat, the more fat you can eat. Like dark chocolate and avocados.
We’ve been trying to exercise regularly the past couple of months. The spike in energy and strength is palpable. While I’m lifting heavier weights and swimming faster laps, the numbers on the scale don’t quite tell the story. My fat-muscle ratio has remained kind of constant with slight deviations. For the past week, I made one simple change in my diet. I’ve been cutting carbs.
Earlier, five minutes after eating lunch, I would struggle to keep my eyes open. Tea/coffee didn’t help at all. My annual health checks show that all’s fine. However, I do have a lower tolerance to carbs than most people. They easily throw my insulin levels out of gear.
I stopped eating carbs for lunch – as in sugar, fruit and starches. I do eat lentils and beans, though. I stick to protein or veggies or a combo. The very first day, I could tell the difference. I was no longer fighting sleep at my desk in the afternoon.
I started watching what I ate for breakfast and dinner as well. I try to keep carbs (as in whole grains, potatoes and sweet potatoes) at less than 30% of what’s on my plate. I limit sweets and dessert to maybe once or twice a week and fruits to about two a day if I don’t include them in my protein shake.
I’m not obsessive about it, just more aware of what’s going into my system. Carbs, even whole grains, can increase bad cholesterol if you consume more than your body needs.
I love potatoes, bread, rice and margaritas too much to give them up, but I save my treats for dinnertime and restrict portions.
I realise that I’m eating a lot less overall with a lot more energy. The fewer carbs I eat, the fewer I crave. And the results are evident. This week, my fat percentage is lower than it has been in the past two months.
These quiches are an ideal low-carb lunch item. Add a few nuts or a small bowl of salad, and I’m full until dinner time.
They are inspired by Kalyn’s Swiss Chard and Mushroom Squares. She used four eggs. I ended up using many more. How many eggs you use would depend on the type of pan you use.
This is not a recipe, just a formula that can be improvised on the go. They freeze very well, so make a big batch and just pull them out and heat then when you need them.
Let me tell you about the salad. It’s got lettuces, lychees, almonds, cucumbers and carrots. The lychees are from a can. They come dunked in some nauseatingly sweet liquid. Save that liquid. When you’re eating lunch, dream of dinnertime – of adding tequila, triple sec and lime to some of the lychee liquid in the fridge. Yes, lychee margaritas make me very, very happy.
CRUSTLESS ASPARAGUS MINI-QUICHES
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Warning: Whatever you make these in, make sure they are LINED. Please don’t put them in mini-pie pans like I did. The quichelets had to be scooped out with a spoon and I spent half an hour with a toothbrush to clean the stuck-up bits.
With these quantities, I got 6 muffins and 6 mini-pies. You can make one big square and cut it into smaller portions like Kalyn did. Just remember to grease the pan and line it on both sides with parchment with some overhang.
Prepare the seasoned veggies.
Two cups veggies and seasonings after cooking
Use anything you like – blanched greens, mushrooms, peppers. Your veggies should be crunchy, not soggy – as in 3/4 done. If you’re using blanched greens, they should be bright green, squeezed dry and chopped.
This is what I did:
Heated 2 tsps olive oil, seasoned it with garlic, cumin, cayenne, oregano and lots of cracked peppercorns and thyme, added
1 bunch chopped asparagus,
some chopped spring onions
3 tbsps chopped sun-dried tomatoes
Add the cheese and binder.
To the 2 cups cooked veggies, add
half cup cheese (I used some super-yummy organic smoked Gouda)
1/4 cup of some binder.
Kalyn used whole wheat panko bread crumbs. I’m trying to cut the carbs and hence went for a combo of ground almonds and nutritional yeast flakes.
You can use ground up whole grain oats, bread crumbs, anything you like.
Season with salt.
Spread this mixture in the pan/pans you are using. Fill it about 3/4 to the top.
Put the filled pans on baking sheets. Add the eggs.
Beat up some eggs with salt and pepper. Kalyn used one pan and needed four. I used many smaller pans and needed many more.
You need as many eggs as you need to almost fill the pans to the top. Start with four or five. If you need more, you can always beat up some more.
This mixture will not rise much. Actually, it will rise and fall back to the level it was. So you can fill the pan/s almost to the top.
For 6 muffin cups and six mini pie-pans, I needed
6 organic whole eggs plus 6 whites.
Those yolks in the pic below are what I had left over (One yolk fell on the floor).
Bake at 350 F for about 20 minutes.
Don’t let them dry out too much. When they start rising, but are still a bit watery on top, you can pop them under the broiler for a minute or two to set. Even if they are a bit wet, if you let them rest a bit, they will probably set on their own.
And for Lets Go Nuts: Almonds at JZ’s Tasty Treats, ‘cos there really are almonds in there.
Filed Under: Almond, Asparagus, Carrot, Cucumber, Dairy/Cheese, Eggs, insulin, Lettuces, low carb, Lychee, NUTRITION, nutritional-yeast, Oregano, protein, quiche, smoked Gouda, Spring-Onions/Scallions, sun-dried-tomato, Thyme, Tomato, Vegetarian Athlete