Sunday, March 27, 2011

I Feel Defeated

Some days I feel like I'm really failing at this thing.
Group setting are still very difficult.
Weekends are near impossible.
I'm an emotional eater, and there have been some significant struggles in my life lately.
My knee hurts like mad and makes me reluctant to workout.
And do you know how much it rains here is Western Washington?! A friend of mine claims that running in the rain gives you super powers but I haven't noticed any heroic new abilities.

After all that dieting and exercising, and all those struggles, I have only lost about 10 pounds. Now even as I write this I understand that 10 pounds is a significant amount. I just hoped it would be higher. Through all the sweat and tears I'm wondering when the loss on the scale will equal the loss I feel in my freedom.
Maybe it won't.
Maybe it's just a bad day, but I'm ready for the hard work to show.
I time... it will get better with time.
Honestly, it has become easier with time, I just pray it continues.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

I just want really good waffles

Modifying Recipes for the Hypoglycemic
It seems like it should be an easy thing to do... remove oil and sugar, use whole grain flour instead...substitute egg whites if possible. A recent attempt at waffles was proof that it isn't that easy. Oh, they were bad, very dense and they had that overwhelming healthy taste. (You know the one... where it has the strong flavor of cardboard, grass or dirt. No one should eat those things.)

The problem is that I love waffles, and I look forward to them all week. I couldn't give up on finding a better version. I made it about a month without any waffles at all, before I caved and had the classic white delicious kind. I understand that they aren't good for me, but they sure hit the spot.
After that first amazing bite I knew I needed to find a way to enjoy waffles, without the guilt, without the crash.

I was determined to find a homemade recipe that was light, fluffy, and 100% whole grain. Then on a quick lunch trip to my local Grocery Outlet Bargain Market I stumbled upon an Oatmeal Pancake Mix from Quaker Oats. It wasn't hard to take that $1.99 price tag as a sign. After all, if a company can package and sell this mix, it can't be that bad... right?

Right! It's good, and very filling. Other than the weird sensation of eating a bowl of oatmeal that is shaped like a waffle, it made me very happy. The texture part still confuses my mouth, but it'll get past that. The best part is that there was no crash and I was full well past my regular feeding time. I have enough left of the batter for at least 3 more waffles, so I plan to make and freeze them for use during the week. I'd love to top off a piece of the waffle with peanut butter and some strawberries as I run off to work. 

Anyway, for now I've put off modifying the waffle recipe. I'd still like to find or create a 100% sugar free version, but until then I'm counting this as a step in the right direction.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Kimchi Pancakes

If someone had told me years ago that I would make a pancake with fermented cabbage in it I would have laughed at them and unfreinded them on Facebook. "Oh yeah!!! How about YOU go eat a fermented cabbage pancake!"

But age has made me open and curious to foods from other cultures, and after giving it a chance I can tell you that Kimchi is pretty darn good.
I don't have the desire to make my own yet, especially not when I can justify a trip to the Asian market to pick some up from the deli. Someday I'm sure I will get that itch and I'll let you know if that happens.
Anyway, Kimchi is good on its own, but I really like Kimchi Pancakes. My friend George and his wife Anne introduced them to me. They ordered one with me at at restaurant once and it was huge! Literally it took up the whole plate and was loaded with kimchi and seafood.
Since then I knew I wanted to make them, but it became a priority when I learned how good kimchi was for me.
Health magazine named kimchi in its list of top five "World's Healthiest Foods" for being rich in vitamins, aiding digestion, and even possibly reducing cancer growth. It also contains a high concentration of dietary fiber and is low in calories. Plus, a serving provides up to 80% of your daily vitamin C and carotene, it's rich in vitamin A, thiamine, riboflavin, calcium, and iron. Check out their article here!

The Hypo Girl's Kimchi Pancakes
1 cup kimchi, drained and chopped
1/2 cup reserved juice from kimchi (if you can't get a full half cup, dilute with water to get enough liquid)
1 cup whole wheat flour (I personally like the King Arthur brand)
2 eggs
1/2 cup green onion, chopped
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Stir together the kimchi, kimchi juice, flour, eggs, and green onion in a bowl. Spray skillet with olive oil and heat to medium. Use about 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake, pour into skillet. Spread as thin as possible. Cook pancakes until set and lightly browned then flip and repeat on the opposite side. Whisk together the rice vinegar and soy sauce to use for dipping. Serve with the pancakes.

This is a great meal to take to work. I make a triple batch and freeze whatever isn't eaten for dinner. At the office I can grab one out of the freezer and warm it in the microwave if I've forgotten lunch.
I count 2 pancakes as my carb, veggie serving and protein and round it out with a piece of fruit for a complete meal. 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sushi for meeeee!

Sushi has been my fixation lately however it hasn't been the best choice when it comes to following the rules. A few weekends ago we decided to change all that and it unleashed a monster.

The classic white rice is what you get after brown rice is robbed of it's color and nutrients during processing. After raping and pillaging the helpless morsels it is left without nutrients and all of the calories it had before.
Brown rice in its original state is a whole grain... a delicious whole grain.
Now because I luuuuuv sushi, let's compare the brown and white versions:

Four-pieces of your average white rice veggie roll has 160 calories, 30 grams of carbs, 2.7 grams of fat, 260 milligrams sodium and .67 grams of fiber.
The brown rice version has all that as well but you gain healthy stuff like 2 more grams of fiber, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, potassium, magnesium, manganese and zinc.
The biggest difference for me is that brown rice has more fiber which leads to a better fight against hunger. It also has a slightly lower Glycemic Load so it helps keep my blood sugar steadier.
On average, eating 4 pieces of sushi with brown rice would cover one serving of whole grains (3 a day are recommended).

Remember I mentioned I have turned into a sushi monster... well for me this is a perfect lunch and so I've eaten it almost every lunch this last week.

Sunday night I made the sushi rice and it has lasted me all week:
2 cups uncooked brown rice cooked according to the package instructions.
While it is cooking, mix the following on the stove until it is dissolved.
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 teaspoon of salt
Put the cooked rice in a pyrex bowl and pour the vinegar mixture on top. Mix well and then take a baking sheet and use it to fan the rice down to room temp.
Now there are about a billion ways to make sushi, but my favorite this week has been a spicy California roll.
I made the spicy sauce by combining fat free mayo with Sriracha until it was just the right shade of spicy orange for me.
Then I shredded some imitation crab meat and mixed it in with the spicy sauce.
After you place a sheet of Nori on your bamboo sushi roller layer the rice on top. If this is too annoyingly sticky for you try wetting your fingers with a mixture of half rice wine vinegar and half water.
Now the fun begins! Decide what you want with it and layer.
Here I chose spicy fake crab, carrots and cucumber.

All you have left after that is to roll it and slice it and eat it.

Along with this roll I also made another for my husband. He had spicy crab, fat free cream cheese, carrots and cucumber. I also learned a horribly good trick here, that I am reluctant to share because it certainly brakes the rules.....
Ah what the heck, just eat this in moderation please.
After you have made that delicious spicy crab roll with the cream cheese, give a saute pan a quick spray of oil and place a few of the rolls in the pan. Let them warm through and get brown on the bottom. Eat it while the cream cheese is still melted. I'm pretty sure I could eat a whole roll that way.
So 4 pieces or half a roll is one serving of whole grains about 1 ounce of protein. Add this to a cup of steamed green beans and an apple for a well rounded meal that is oh so good.

As long as you keep the ingredients simple it can be a very low cost party dish. Make up several of the same types of rolls and stagger them throughout the evening.
Don't forget the ginger, wasabi and soy sauce!
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