Look Out Mounds Candy Bar!

Ok, let’s start with the fact that I don’t have a sweet tooth.  I could care less if I never tasted chocolate or cake or candy again.  It’s not my thing.  However, now and again, when wanting something sweet, my favorite combination is dark chocolate and coconut.  So, on the rare, usually once a year case when I wanted sweets, I’d grab myself a Mounds candy bar.  It would take me about three days to eat the whole thing, but it was scrumptious and hit the spot every time.

ccbSo, now I’m on Ideal, and obviously Mounds are not allowed.  However, every day, every friggin day, I get to have one of IP’s chocolate coconut protein bars, and people, these things are so delicious, I can’t even tell you!  They have the filling nature of a protein bar, with not overly sweet chocolate, and the texture of biting into coconut.  It’s awesome!

So, for anyone who is curious about IP food, this one is a total winner!  Feels like I’m eating a candy bar.  And I think a lot of people like that sort of thing, so you should look into it!

Now, if they’d just figure out how we can have a French fry substitute that was just as tasty, I’d be set! 🙂

Ciao for now,

M

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This Ain’t Yo Mamma’s Cauliflower!

Ok, so one of the staples on the Ideal Protein meal plan is cruciferous veggies, and cauliflower is one that has quickly become my favorite!  It is so versatile, I had no idea all the cool stuff it could do.  So, in case you were wondering, it can:

1. Be grated and quickly sautéed in a tablespoon of olive oil to use in place of rice for a stir fry.

2. It can be steamed and then mashed with garlic and herbs instead of mashed potatoes.

3. And most astonishingly, it can be turned into bread!  BREAD!  Yes, blink, and read that again, because I said bread!

I’ve found a few online recipes for cauliflower breadsticks and pizza dough, and both were pretty good.  But the one that is my favorite, is the tortillas!  I followed this recipe on the brilliant and wonderful Joshua Weissman’s blog, Simple Palate.

pcHis pictures and process are spot on, so I won’t replicate them here.  But, I did change on thing up, in that I used purple cauliflower.  It does exist, if you’ve never tried it.  Tastes just like regular cauliflower, but is prettier to cook with.  And when used in Josh’s recipe, it comes out looking like blue corn tortillas!

Now, you want to follow the recipe exactly the first time, and then experiment with flavors, but the original is super tasty with just salt and pepper.  There are a few tips I’ll give:

1. Make sure you wring out all the water!  Wear rubber dish washing gloves.  Use cheesecloth.  And wring that stuff until you can’t wring any more!  Bonus, you get a good arm workout.

2. Don’t be surprised by how little cauliflower is in the cheesecloth when you’re done wringing out the water.  A little goes a long way.

3. I made 3 taco sized tortillas out of it, but you could do two larger tortillas, or a bunch of smaller ones.  But the key here is that the ‘dough’ is more like a ‘batter’.  Think pancakes batter.  So, when you put them on the parchment, it’s going to look runny and lumpy.  Trust me, it’s all good.

4.  Toasting them in a dry pan right before serving is what makes them taste and feel like a tortilla. So, don’t skip this step.

Below is a photo of my faux blue corn tortillas made from purple cauliflower, stuffed with ground turkey seasoned with chili powder, cumin, and a touchcts of cayenne, and some micro greens, all topped with a few drops of hot
sauce!

And the bread craving I’ve been having over the past month is gone, yo!

Try them!  You won’t be disappointed.

Ciao for now,

M

 

Rutabagas and Chopsticks and Jicama, Oh My!

Ok, so this whole cruciferous veggie part of Ideal is tough for someone with a limited palate when it comes to veggies.  So, I’ve been doing a lot of online searching for recipes, and two words kept popping up:  rutabaga fries.  And my first thought was: what the hell is a rutabaga?

Well, it looks like this:

rutabaga-nutrition-facts

It’s pretty in that photo, but it’s seriously ugly in person.  But, I bought one. I took it home, peeled it, julienned it, tossed it in one tablespoon of olive oil, sprinkled salt and pepper and tossed it in the oven.  And I was not a fan.  The pieces didn’t crisp up, they were quite soggy.  And the texture was not pleasing to my palate at all.  I might need to try a different recipe, because the one I used made the ‘fries’ burnt on the outside and not quite cooked on the inside.  So, even though I don’t know that the rutabaga and I will be buddies, I will give it one more shot before discarding.

Now, on the other hand, I also tried, for the first time, to navigate a jicama.  I’d had jicama slaw in restaurants before, but between the dressing, the other veggies, etc. in the salad, I couldn’t tell you what a jicama tasted like.  And so when I went to buy one, I had no idea they looked like this:

0903p22-jicama-m

So, I got it and julienned it, and was an instant fan.  It’s kind of the cross between an apple and a water chestnut.  Light flavor, crispy texture.  Its a great compliment to raw celery or cauliflower.  If you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend it.

chopsticksHowever, my best discovery of the week is using chopsticks to get myself to slow the hell down when I eat.  By the time dinner rolls around I’m craving real food, and have been quite creative in my 8oz of protein and 2 cups of veggies.  However, I scarf them down.  So, I was at the kitchen store buying a fish spatula (which really does make a difference, btw), I noticed chopsticks and the light bulb went on.  Eureka!  And so now, for lunch veggies and dinner, I use chopsticks.  These little wooden gems help me slow down while I eat, and thoroughly enjoy each bite.

Ciao for now,

M