THIS WEEK – The QUIET whispers of Diabetes-Compatible eating

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

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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

My WEDDING CAKE Diabetic "Happy" Amaretto Cheesecakes

CHEESECAKE!!!! Need I say More?

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!

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05/27/2015

Article # 148

The QUIET whispers of reason in Diabetes-Compatible eating 

What would I do without you, my faithful readers? Whether it is here on my site or on other sites, you continue to inspire me. Kathleen is one of those readers whose name pops up every now and again. She has come a long way from where she started. If I had anything at all to do with it…I am thrilled!!!!

Thank you! I learn so much from you sharing your recipes and thoughts. I love ethnic foods, and will do a month of ethnic cooking. Sometimes I have a yen (pun intended) and sometimes I go with the flow. Last month it was Italian featuring minestrone. This month it’s Mediterranean, and I’m having so much fun with it. Yes, herbs make the recipe and alter it as well. The possibilities are infinite. I’m deeply grateful to you

Kathleen is ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. The possibilities are infinite. That is if your willingness is just as infinite.

From 3 jars of spices mix...27 meals...and counting

From 3 jars of spices mix…27 meals…and counting

I blame the strict medical establishment in part for those of us that think that the enjoyment of eating is over on the day you are diagnosed. The “no you can’t” or should I say: “Thou shalt not” are so loud it is hard to hear the quiet whispers of eating reason that are out there.

No question that you can have chicken and fish. I know two things about those foods.

"Greek" Chicken using pre-packaged Symeons Spice mix

“Greek” Chicken using pre-packaged Symeons Spice mix

1- Chicken day after day after day after day, can be BOORING! It is up to you to make it different and exciting. It does not have to be a big production. A new spice, a squeeze of lemon or lime will make same old same old become new again. A little more in the way of spices (salt and pepper is fine but….) will give you a brand new dish. The great thing is you don’t HAVE to stress over it. The “stupidmarkets” carry a host of spice combinations for every possible type of cuisine. Rubs, Italian seasoning, Herbs de Provence, Chinese five spice, curries, Adobo, and on and on and on, change the flavors enough for you to have a new taste every night. Don’t limit these to just chicken. Try them on lamb and beef and pork. Just sprinkle a little (or a lot) on that boring protein and you have set sail on an eating adventure.

2-Then there is,,, ”yuck” fish. What is it about fish and mushrooms that people screw up their faces and go eweee? I suppose it can smell up the kitchen. I suppose it has a different (funny) texture.

Haddock stuffed with Prosciutto and Scallops

Haddock stuffed with Prosciutto and Scallops

It is interesting that when I post a fish recipe, I get far less of a response from my readers. That does NOT count the eweee. Well I think that fish well prepared, can be more than a good healthy meal, but a great one. So from time to time, I will try and wear you down and post another fish recipe. One day, you will break down and try it. You know what? If you don’t like it, it is ok with me and all of us that do like fish. More for us that do like it.

Kathleen is an inspiration to me, and should be to you. Get over you limitations and go out there and cook something so good that you will wonder why you ever thought eating with Diabetes had to be a boring thing.

Go from country to country via the spices of the region. The best things are:

1- You can do it quickly and easily from your own home.

2-Unlike the airport, you don’t have to get to your kitchen early and stand in line.

The recipe below is one I have been preparing for years. I had friends drop by after a performance at the ballet. They saw the George Balanchine Allegro Brillante. After the first bite, one of my friends dubbed this dish Poulet Brillante. Like the ballet it is light and crisp, and takes less than 15 minutes to prep.

ENJOY!!! Be happy, be healthy, enjoy the adventure, and BE DECADENT! –w!

Poulet Brilante A very fancy name for a SIMPLE, QUICK, & DELICIOUS DISH

             Poulet Brillante
A very fancy name for a Simple, Quick, & Delicious dish

 

Poulet Brillante

2 servings

Net carbohydrates 3 grams.

Chef’s Note: This is the quickest and the most bang for the buck chicken dish I make. I prepared this dish years ago (and no, it has NOT changed just to be Diabetes-Compatible) for friends of mine for an after ballet dinner. Allegro Brillante was one of the pieces on the program. My guests dubbed this dish Poulet Brillante. Like the ballet, it is quick, crisp, sharp, and takes less than 15 minutes to prepare.

2 Boneless/skinless chicken breasts or thighs (4-6 ounces each)

Salt and pepper to taste

Juice and zest of ½ lemon

1 tsp. dried tarragon.

1 small clove of garlic (grated or minced)

1 TBSP. mayonnaise

½ tsp. Dijon mustard

HOW TO PREPARE THE RECIPE:

Preheat oven to 350°

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Allow to marinade for at least ½ hour. Place in a heavy oven-proof skillet and cook for 30 minutes until done.

 

 

05/20/2015

Article #147

Home again, home again… the best of Diabetes-Compatible cooking

Getting back home from a long trip where having Diabetes constantly reminds you that eating needs some restrictions, made me really appreciate the amazing variety of meals I can prepare at home that help me to manage my Diabetes and eat like a king.

Not surprisingly, our plane landed a little late. It took a while to get a taxi and get home. After stowing our bags in a corner in the hallway, I opened my refrigerator and was delighted to find a couple of containers of low carbohydrate peach yogurt. I know, I know, it was just yogurt. But it was there for me almost saying welcome home.

Pork chop Grilled using Herbs de Provence

Pork chop Grilled using Herbs de Provence

After luxuriating in the “normalcy” of everyday life, I stuck my head into the freezer and found a host of wonderful meals just waiting to be defrosted and devoured. The freezer is your friend.  All that work way back (pork chops were on sale one week), paid off big time. I was rewarded with a delicious meal for the next night of chops with Herbs de Provence. My refrigerator would do all the work for me until dinnertime. Even then, I only had to pan fry the chops for a few minutes on each side and finish them in a hot oven. It made this chef happy for all the work done in advance. After all I need to devote much of the next day to loads of laundry, answering mail, a quick trip to the market for fresh vegetables and dairy, and writing a new article for you to read.

Coffee with frothed hot milk - From Tyler Florence

  Coffee with frothed hot milk

The next morning…MY coffee.  Need I say more?

While I enjoy the efforts of other chefs and eating in other restaurants, it is different now that I have Diabetes. Being a chef is equal parts hard work and creativity. I know that I am, and most chefs are, happy to accommodate the needs of paying guests, but I feel somewhat guilty in cramping the style and balance of the creation of a fellow chef. As accommodating as they are, I still need to work within their frame work. A restaurant meal should be prepared with a balance of flavors and textures on the plate. Asking for changes sometimes throws off the balance and takes away from the concept of the dish.

Lip Smacking, Plate Scraping, "like Crazy Delicious Mashed Cauliflower

Lip Smacking, Plate Scraping, “like Crazy Delicious Mashed Cauliflower

Back at home, I have free range of the kitchen and total control of my eating. Everything I desire is right there at my fingertips. What I try to do is to give you, my readers, the same tools (toys?) to play with in your kitchen. The rest of the week I found that my Diabetes-Compatible food never tasted so good. I guess that absence does make the palate grow fonder. There was a simple joy in eating the vegetables I love and not being stuck with what works well under mass production. The mashed cauliflower I like so much took on a new meaning because I could not find it on the road.

The biggest thing was making my Friday dessert. My biggest gripe with restaurants is there is seldom a low carbohydrate choice for dessert. Don’t, please don’t, get me wrong, I do not expect that restaurants will put low carbohydrate desserts on their menus, but it would be really nice to have some berries or other fruit available for me to enjoy while others are enjoying their double caramel and fudge goo-ity.

Being back in my kitchen, I decided to do a relatively new dessert for the weekend. It is a cinnamon crunch cake. Living in New York City, cinnamon crumb cakes were everywhere. This Diabetes-Compatible version rivals the best of them (at least in my opinion).

ENJOY!!! Be happy, be healthy, and BE DECADENT! –w!

 

Cinnamon Nut Crunch Cake

   Cinnamon Nut Crunch Cake

Cinnamon Nut Crunch Cake

 

Serves 6 or makes 6 cupcakes

Net carbohydrates               13g.

Chef’s note: In New York city, we were surrounded with marvelous cakes topped with all kinds of crumb and nut toppings. This is my equally delicious Diabetes-Compatible version.  Careful: you might get hooked. I like to use an 8-8 ½ inch springform pan (well greased) or cupcake tin lined with paper cups.

CAKE

2/3  -cup flour (you can replace up to 1/4 the white flour with whole wheat flour)

½  cup toasted walnuts

1-tsp. cinnamon

1/8 tsp. ground cardamom (OPTIONAL)

1 – tsp. baking powder

1 –tsp, baking soda (1/2 into dry mix, ½ into wet mix)

pinch of salt

1/2 – stick (4 ounces) of butter at room temperature

¼ cup vegetable oil

1 – cup GRANULATED SUGAR SUBSTITUTE

3 – large eggs at room temperature

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

2 – tbsp. sour cream (Low fat is ok BUT NOT fat free)

1 – tsp. cider vinegar

TOPPING

½ – cup toasted walnuts

2- TBSP

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Pinch of salt

2 TBSP. granulated sugar substitute (or equivalent)

*NOTE: Cardamom is sometimes hard to find sometimes. If you can find it, it adds a nuance to the cake. I keep my ground cardamom frozen.

HOW I PREPARE THE RECIPE:

Pre heat oven to 350°

Dry Mixture

In a food processor:

Combine1/2 cup of the nuts, salt, and 1/3 cup flour. Pulse until the nuts are totally pulverized. Add the remaining 1/3 cup flour, and spices. Pulse until combined. Add baking soda and  baking powder and pulse until combined. (I often do this a day ahead),

Wet Mixture

Easiest if you have a stand mixer+

Cream butter and GRANULATED SUGAR SUBSTITUTE until light and fluffy add the oil and beat until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl

Add vanilla extract..

Combine the sour cream and vinegar. Add remaining ½ tsp. of baking soda to sour cream and stir.

Alternately add the dry ingredients and the eggs and sour cream mixture. Start with the dry. MIX ONLY UNTIL JUST INCORPORATED otherwise you wind up with bread.

Spoon the batter into baking pan.

Chop the remaining walnuts and using clean fingers, combine with the butter, cinnamon, salt, and sugar substitute. Distribute evenly over the batter.Bake for 26-28 minutes (17-22 minutes for cupcakes) or until tester comes out dry from the center.

 

 

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