Sunday, May 20, 2012

Low-Carb Round-Up Week 2

Week 2 went by without a hitch and without feeling deprived. Flavorful meals kept the interest up, lots of vegetables helped keep me full, and frequent small meals or snacks containing protein also bumped up the satiety factor.

Spaghetti squash with 4-hour meat sauce

For those meals when those around you are screaming for pasta, this sauce is the answer. Yes, it may take 4 hours to simmer, but is it ever worth it.

My kids had this over spaghetti, and I had it with spaghetti squash. I did not miss the pasta at all.
Roasted chicken breast with shallot-herb pan sauce

Sauteed shredded Brussels sprouts with ham

Roasted green beans with sunflower seeds

Lemon-mint Creme

Because my kids love dark meat poultry, when I buy the "picnic packs" of cut-up whole chickens, I am left with the split bone-in chicken breasts for myself. I've found that the simplest and tastiest way to prepare them is with a good pan-sear, breast down, and then 20 minutes in a searing-hot oven in the same pan.

Then it's just a few minutes to let the chicken rest to make a pan sauce and you have crispy skin, succulent meat and a flavorful sauce.

Brussels sprouts are on so many people's No Eat Never list, but I swear, it's only because people don't know how to treat them. My usual method of prep is to slice them in half, drizzle them with olive oil and roast them until lovely and brown, but this method of shredding and sauteeing them is my new favorite.

Add some onion, herbs, ham or bacon to it and you have a great side dish.

Brussels sprouts and asparagus are not the only vegetables that can benefit from a good roast in the oven. Fresh green beans drizzled with olive oil, roasted and then hit with a squeeze of fresh lemon and topped with sunflower seeds and a shower of freshly shredded parm makes a tasty and easy vegetable side dish.

Dessert isn't off-limits even during Phase 1 of the plan. The South Beach Diet has a recipe for a lemon zest ricotta creme which is out of this world. I decided to substitute farmer's cheese for the ricotta and added some mint for a refreshing, creamy dessert.

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