The GOAL of this site is to help people with Diabetes transform what we can or should eat, into what we WANT to eat!
A diagnosis of DIABETES is NOT the end of GREAT EATING
The purpose of my website and the cookbook that is in the works is to celebrate our limitations, reinvent our diets, and applaud every positive step we make, every ounce we lose, every point our numbers go down and to let you know that:
YOU ARE NOT ALONE – IT WILL GET EASIER – LIFE WILL BE DELICIOUS AGAIN!
I hope to share with you that a DIABETIC COMPATIBLE RECIPE does not have to be a stand in for the “good stuff” but can stand alone as something wonderful.
Enjoy, be Healthy, BE Happy, Be Creative, Be DECADENT !
TO ACCESS MY RECIPES AND PAST ARTICLES, LOOK ON THE BLACK BAND UNDER THE PICTURE OF MY KITCHEN COUNTER AND CLICK ON EITHER POSTED RECIPES OR PAST ARTICLES
Disclaimer: I do mention some brand name brand products in some articles. I am not paid by the companies that make or distribute these products, nor do I own any stock in any of the companies. I mention them because…THE PRODUCTS WORK FOR ME!
Shotgun Wedding…Eating and Diabetes
Six years ago I got the diagnosis of type 2 Diabetes. It felt like I was forced into a shot-gun wedding. Whether or not I liked it, I was stuck. There would be no divorce until medical science came up with a cure. So I guess I am in this for the long haul. I intend to make the best of it.
With the history in my family I decided to make the changes that will assist me in living a healthier and I hope, longer life. It did not happen all at once but over time. I got easier and easier.
I certainly don’t want to get sicker, and I most certainly don’t want to lose a limb or have vision problems.
I actually enjoy good food and cooking. I love to “wow” people and myself with some new concoction.
Giving up the foods I like is simply not in the cards. I had to decide how important they are for me. I don’t want to feel so deprived that I won’t stick with a plan, (not just for a few weeks until I lost some weight), but for life and the good quality of that life. From time to time (for me) I at least think about a cheat.
The “suggested” serving size for so many of the higher carbohydrates is so small that I push away from the table sad and unhappy. What I learned to do is make the small portion taste so good and fill my plate with other things that taste so good, that I hardly notice what I am missing. For example: I still make “Fish and chips”. I do it in the oven with only one side of the fish coated with crumbs and make oven “fried” potatoes to go along with it. The simple trick (for me) is to fill the plate with Skinny Slaw. I have always loved it and I can have a plate-load of it with very few grams of carbohydrates. Full plate, great taste, happy face! I never forget the tartar sauce made with a sugar free pickle relish.
I love savory foods and I like sweet treats. I don’t see a need to give them up. For me,
and it is MY choice, I am fine with using a sugar substitute. I won’t recommend one to my readers. It is your choice to use what works for you. I don’t get caught up in the argument that this one is bad, this one is good. All I will do is suggest that you look at the science and NOT get caught up in anyone else’s hysteria.
If it doesn’t taste good, you are not gonna eat it. Eating foods you like will help you stick to your eating plan. My household is wackazoid for fish. Yours might not be. My suggestion is to look at why you don’t like a food. Is it really the taste? Or is it the texture or the odor. Is it because you never had it before? The other day I was talking about a Gorgonzola cheese I like. I asked my friend if he liked Gorgonzola cheese. His immediate response was NO!!! A minute or so later he said: “I never had that kind of cheese”
Why close your mind to new foods or spices? As a kid I hated pizza. I managed to do this without ever trying it. It looked yucky to this 6 year old kid. Give it a shot. If you really don’t like it, you never have to eat it again.
Settling for less than the best won’t work. Buy the very best product your budget allows. Also remember that because it is inexpensive does not mean it is not good. That gorgonzola cheese I like so much far less expensive than most, but tastes like it cost a bundle.
I try very hard not to let having Diabetes get me down. It is not the worst disease one can have, but it is serious and like us, needs to be treated with care and respect.
ENJOY!!! Be happy, be healthy, be creative, and BE DECADENT! –w!
A SHOW STOPPER – GREAT AS A BIRTHDAY (or WEDDING CAKE!!!)
net carbohydrates 13g. per slice
Chef’s note: Don’t be afraid to make this dessert. I make the crust a day ahead and keep it in the refrigerator. The food processor makes this a snap. I made 5 of these for our wedding and there was not a crumb left in site.
8-9 inch Springform pan
PAM or butter for the springform pan
2/3 cup flour
1/3 cup toasted almonds
¼ cup GRANULATED SUGAR SUBSTITUTE
1 pinch salt
¼ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp. baking powder
4 tbsp. butter or margarine
1 large egg
HOW I PREPARE THE RECIPE:
In the bowl of a food processor pulse the dry ingredients to pulverize the nuts and combine with the other ingredients. Cut butter into 8 pieces to distribute in dry ingredients. Pulse until it forms coarse pea sized bits. Add egg and continue to pulse until the dough forms a ball that revolves on the blade
Remove dough, pat out to a disk and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 35-45 minutes (or overnight). Roll out on flowered surface to about a 14 in circle. Using your fingers fit into bottom and up the sides of a springform pan.. This dough is fragile and will break. Not to worry just piece it together with your fingers. Refrigerate for 15-20 minutes before filling.
2 8oz. pkgs. cream cheese
1- cup Ricotta cheese
¾ cup GRANULATED SUGAR SUBSTITUTE
3 tsp. lemon juice + 1 tsp lemon grated lemon zest
2 tsp pure vanilla extract and
4 tbsp. AMARETTO LIQUOR
¼ tsp. almond extract
3 large eggs
1 tbsp. flour
Sliced almonds to sprinkle over filling
Method for filling:
In the food processor combine GRANULATED SUGAR SUBSTITUTE and ricotta cheese. Pulse until very smooth and then add the softened cream cheese. Whip on high speed until combined. Add remaining ingredients and mix until well combined. Taste for balance of flavor. Adjust GRANULATED SUGAR SUBSTITUTE or lemon or vanilla to suit your taste.
Pour filling into springform. Sprinkle the sliced almonds around the edge of the cake (this will help hide any cracking).
Bake at 325° for 45 min to one hour until sides are set but the center is still slightly jiggly. Remove cool completely. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Article # 141
Answering a Readers comments on Diabetes
I always look in on the sites that use my articles and recipes. I am struck by how often I see some comments and would like to take the time to address two of them with you.
I was recently diagnosed with Diabetes. I don’t know what to do. I am lost. I am having a terrible time finding a nutritionist. I don’t know what to eat.
Even though I know that every day dozens of people are diagnosed with Diabetes, my heart sinks when I see this comment. Was I just lucky to have a doctor that cared enough to spend some time with me and get me started on managing my Diabetes?
Do not misunderstand; I walked out of his office in a daze, but not without some hope. He handed me a few booklets on Diabetes and set me up to meet with a Diabetes educator and nutritionist. If you have been reading my articles for a while, you know how badly that went.
A new reader came to me last week with their situation of being newly diagnosed and did not know where to turn. This was my response to her:
First of all I want to give you fair warning, I am relentlessly positive and optimistic about managing Diabetes. Second I am answering your questions as what I am, a chef with Diabetes, who creates recipes for myself and other people with Diabetes. I am NOT a medical person.
You need to be absolutely clear that you are already doing great. No, I mean that. ONLY a very small percentage of people diagnosed with Diabetes chose to do anything about it. (This goes for all of you as well. Even if you only look at one or two sites dedicated to Diabetes, it is more than most people do. Reach over and pat yourself on the back for me!) There are over 30 million people in the US alone that have been diagnosed and just look at how few follow any of the sites that have information to share. So making the CHOICE to change anything is a fantastic step. Researching and reaching out is even better.
As for finding a nutritionist, bang on your doctor’s door and see if her office can recommend somebody. Try your local hospitals. Many have practices devoted to Diabetes management.
One thing I want you to be clear about is that the nutritionists are there to guide you. Take from them what will work for YOU long term, and go from there. Make certain they treat you with kindness and respect. My first encounter was a horror story. Keep in mind that the training they get is heavily focused on heart health. That is good, but they often are not as well informed about Diabetes even if they are part of a Diabetes practice. Also remember each of us is different and have different medical needs (food allergies, high blood pressure, etc.). Remember that these people are guides and consultants, nothing more. Seeing a nutritionist is no different than working with any consultant. They are there to advise you, but the final choices HAVE to be yours. For example: if a career consultant suggests you should not pursue a certain career but you love that industry, find a way to make it work for you.
Same thing goes for foods you love. If there is a food that you love, figure out how to make it taste so good that the recommended portion works for you. I did this with mashed potatoes, but also with mashed cauliflower. I made them both taste so good I could have either but now chose to have the lower carbohydrate cauliflower and more of it. BUT for Shepard’s pie, I still choose to use the smashed spuds.
What should I be eating?
As for eating, the common science is to lower your intake of carbohydrates.
Most important: make certain that you and the nutritionist are on the same page and that you are treated with care and respect that you deserve. If that is not what is happening…find another person to guide you!!!!
I can always tell a person with Diabetes in the supermarket. They are the ones reading labels. My personal format is to work with NET carbs (Carbohydrate grams minus fiber grams). As for recipes check out the recipe list on some of the Diabetes related sites… and yes…my website. I have over 125 posted in the various categories. Keep in mind that if you HATE lima beans, you really don’t have to eat them or download ANY lima bean recipes. (By the way, I don’t have any lima bean recipes. Why?… I don’t like them)! Spend an evening cuddled up in front of the computer and figure out what foods you think you want to add to your eating. Download those recipes and USE them.
My answer about what is smart to eat is: Lower the carbohydrates and figure out your carbohydrate budget: what you can eat that will lower your numbers and keep them low, but also as part of an eating plan you can stick with long term.
My example: The recommended serving size for turkey is three ounces. Who do you know that has that size portion on Thanksgiving???
I have attached a picture of what my meals were like before I learned how to cook for me AND my family. Good luck…and feel free to ask me questions. Take that back, PLEASE ask for assistance if you need it-w!
I hope my answer to this reader is of assistance to all of you.
ENJOY!!! Be happy, be healthy, be creative, and BE DECADENT! –w!
Smashed Spuds Or Mashed Cauliflower ?
Spuds (½ cup): net carbohydrates 19g.
Mashed Cauliflower (1cup serving) 10g.
In order to keep the carbohydrate grams down, I cook these potatoes a little longer to increase the volume. I keep the skins on and flavor them very well so that the smaller portion is satisfying enough I don’t feel cheated.
This recipe comes out so smooth that I keep the skins on to prove to my friends that I did not use instant potatoes. However if you want more on your plate for less carbohydrates, Mashed Cauliflower is the ticket. Are they the same? Both are scrumptious and are interchangeable and both hold lakes and rivers of sauce, but there is a difference. Over the years I have come to like the cauliflower better…but that is me.
3/4 – pound red or Yukon gold potatoes (about 3 small[size of a large egg])
2- cups cauliflower florets
1 – Tsp. salt to flavor the water
2 – cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
2 – medium shallots, diced
Salt and pepper to taste
2 – Tbsp. butter + one Tbsp. butter for mashing
3 – Tbsp. Sour cream
½ – tsp. dry dill (optional)
2 – tsp. chopped fresh parsley
3 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese
HOW TO PREPARE THE RECIPE:
Place salt and garlic slices in 2-3 Quarts of cold water. Bring to a boil.
Leaving the skin on, slice the potato into ¾ inch slices or cut the cauliflower into florets. Carefully drop into boiling water. Boil for 9-10 minutes.
While the potatoes or cauliflower are cooking, sauté the shallots in 2 Tbsp. of butter. Add the salt and pepper. Allow to cool slightly
Drain the water from the potatoes (or cauliflower ) and garlic. Return to the pot and cook for 30 seconds or so to dry up excess moisture.
For Potatoes: Note: Potatoes don’t like being whipped. They tend to get gummy. Place potatoes and garlic in a bowl with 1 Tbsp. of butter. Mash until smooth. Add the sour cream and continue to mash until smooth. Add the onions, herbs and parmesan cheese. Stir to combine.
For Cauliflower: Place the cauliflower and garlic in a bowl with 1 Tbsp. of butter. Using a hand held mixer, slowly begin to whip the cauliflower until smooth. Add the sour cream and combine. Add the onions, herbs and parmesan cheese. Stir to combine.
Either can be held aside and reheated in the oven if you want a crust, or in a covered bowl over simmering water.