I love pasta. I love bread. I love potatoes.
Unfortunately, all of those favorite foods are carbohydrate heavy, and Hubby Bryan and I are attempting a low-carb diet at our house these days. We’ve been consuming a lot of lean protein and roasted vegetables in our attempt to eat healthier and shed a few of the extra pounds we’ve accumulated around our middles in our middle ages.
So far, I haven’t felt too deprived, although I expect dreams (nightmares?) about big plates of mashed potatoes and gravy and fettuccine Alfredo could begin any time.
In some ways, enforcing such a diet makes meal planning easier. Our menus are quite straightforward: grilled or roasted meat of some sort, a salad of some sort, roasted or steamed vegetables of some sort. But after just a couple weeks, we’re starting to struggle with creativity — switching things up enough so we don’t get bored with the cuisine.
So if anyone has any dietary ideas or suggestions — particularly low-carb substitutes for pasta, potatoes and bread — they would be appreciated.
Hands down, my favorite method of vegetable preparation is roasting. Have you tried roasting the ABCs — asparagus, broccoli or cauliflower? Cooking veggies in the brings out their sweet and nutty tones.
Here’s the basic method: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut broccoli or cauliflower into individual florets of similar size. For asparagus, snap or trim off the woody ends. Arrange vegetables in a single layer on baking sheet. Coat the vegetables lightly with olive oil or cooking spray. Season with salt and peppers or herb blends.
Bake for 10-15 minutes, watching carefully and turning occasionally, until vegetables begin to lightly brown. Remove from oven and serve immediately. The cooked vegetables can also be dressed with a light vinaigrette or squeeze of lemon juice.
Send your healthy eating ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org; Lagniappe, Box 639, Worthington 56187.
This isn’t on our low-carb diet, but it sure sounds delicious. Ora LeeWard of Edgerton heeded my pleas for “cozy” comfort food fare.
“I found this recipe in a Leota church cookbook several years ago, and it’s certainly become a favorite of mine,” she writes. “As for cozy, I think it qualifies, but don’t just limit it to winter; it’s an all-season dish.
Excellent Hash Brown Casserole
Thaw one large package frozen shredded hash browns. Season potatoes with salt and pepper and place into a large buttered casserole or roaster.
Brown 1 pound ground beef with ½ onion chopped. Place beef mixture on top of potatoes. Sprinkle with frozen peas (as many as desired).
Combine 1 can cream of mushroom soup, 1 can cream of chicken soup and 1/2 cup sour cream with chives (or plain). Spread over peas. Sprinkle one 8-ounce package shredded cheddar cheese and one 6-ounce can French-friend onions over top.
Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or a little longer.