After experimenting with various flavors of Protein Packed Ice Cream, I had a lot of low fat cottage cheese leftover. I’ve been obsessed with pureeing cottage cheese lately. It can sub for anything creamy, sneaking in extra protein to keep you satisfied. It also makes this typical “diet food” more sexy to eat. It’s not that I don’t absolutely love heavy cream and FAGE total and all of the lovely wholesome saturated fat those contain. If you haven’t read Good Calories, Bad Calories yet, pick up it up and prepare to be blown away by what the scientific evidence really shows regarding the relationship between heart health, disease risk, and saturated fats. Hint: It’s not what the processed food-pushing establishment tells you! There are many ways to incorporate healthful natural fats into your diets: Eat grass-fed 85/15 beef and chicken thighs, use cream in your coffee, sauté with butter or coconut oil, and my favorite way–pop a square of extra dark chocolate! There can, however, be too much of a good thing, especially when you’re watching your waistline. Your body won’t tap into your stored fat if there is too much dietary fat coming in. And no, a high-protein diet won’t wear out your kidneys!
Regardless of whether you use full-fat yogurt or pureed cottage cheese, this curry is packed full of flavor and will leave you wanting more. No need to slave over a hot stove since it takes less than a half hour (he-ey, Rachel Ray!) to whip up. If your cabinet isn’t already stocked will all of these lovely spices, don’t hesitate to make the investment. You will want to make this dish over and over. The only ingredients I had to run out for were the ginger root and the garam marsala. Garam marsala, an aromatic blend of spices, is ideal for adding an Indian flair to omelets, stir fries, and other quick n’ dirty meals. The downside of making curry is that the whole house still smells like all of those wonderful spices, reminding me that my dad ate the leftovers. Guess that means I’ll have to make more…
Indian Chicken Curry
Adapted from an AllRecipes recipe
Makes 4 small servings
1-3 tablespoons of oil, butter, or ghee
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon of garam marsala
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
1/16 teaspoon pure stevia extract
1/8-1/4 teaspoon sea salt
3 boneless chicken thighs or 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup plain yogurt or pureed cottage cheese (I used Friendship 1%)
3/4 cup coconut milk (lite, if you prefer)
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional–omit if you don’t like spicy foods)
Prep vegetables. Heat fat in a skillet over medium heat. Saute onion until browned and fragrant. Add garlic, curry powder, cinnamon, paprika, bay leaf, ginger, sweetener, and sea salt, stirring around the pan for 2 minutes. Use a food processor or magic bullet to puree cottage cheese or yogurt with coconut milk and tomato paste. Add chicken and coconut milk mixture to pan. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat, squeeze in the lime juice, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the bay leaf, and stir in the cayenne pepper if you’re using it. Finish with more lime juice to taste, and serve over riced cauliflower.
~6 grams net carbs per serving, using lite coconut milk and pureed cottage cheese
Makes four small servings
4 cups of fresh grated cauliflower
1 tablespoon organic unsalted butter
1/2 crumbled organic boullion cube (watch out for MSG!)
Grate cauliflower with a cheese grater. Add butter to a pan over medium heat. Stir fry cauliflower for 2 minutes, crumbling the boullion cube over it during the cooking process. Cook until just tender, and remove from pan.
~3g net carbs per serving
At the risk of being culturally insensitive, I’m posting a faux-fried rice recipe to suit those of us who have a love-hate relationship with this nutritionally devoid yet ridiculously addictive grain.
Yeah yeah, asians are skinny and all they eat is rice, right? For the record, a couple of my chinese friends brought that one up. Answer: I know what works for me, and rice does not! Its high glycemic starchy goodness jacks up my appetite, making me a threat to anything carby with a one mile radius. Then it’s off to slumberland to sleep away the carb-induced lethargy. The seratonin high that hits you after the first few forkfuls is pretty intense (do I sounds like a junkie?), but productive when you need to get back to studying? Not so much. My exam weeks were probably a lot more stressful then they should have been with all the Dragon Gate meals I would pack away under pressure.
Savor the salty goodness of a beloved Americanized asian staple and your mental acuity with this low carb adaptation. This is not an original recipe, by the way. Some brilliant low carb chef who came before me cooked up (har!) this crazy idea. The rice component is replaced by grated cauliflower, no joke, prepared with the same familiar flavorings. It’ll smell funky in the pan for a moment, but then your kitchen will fill with the comforting aroma of a Panda Express kitchen. Bonuses: It takes a lot less time, packs a nutritional punch (courtesy of the brassicas), and won’t leave you with a carb hangover.
This recipe is totally flexible. Use whatever veggies you like. Make it yours! I happened to have peas on hand, and was out of green onions. Carrots are pretty “traditional” in this, too. Be warned: this is just as tasty as the original, and possibly more flavorful because you’re not deeling with the heaviness of the rice gunking it all up. Seriously, you might want to make this with a hungry friend to solve any portion control issues.
The shrimp got decapitated by my vigorous wok action.
Shrimp Fried “Rice”
Makes 3 servings
2 heapings cups of grated fresh cauliflower
2 tablespoons coconut oil (any cooking oil is fine)
1/2 cup sugar snap pea pods
1/3 cup onion, chopped
4 tablespoons wheat-free tamari or soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
dash of garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1-4 oz can of baby shrimp, or protein of choice
1/4 cup of green peas
2 eggs, beaten
green onion, for garnish (optional)
Grate cauliflower using a fine cheese grater. Heat up pan with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Mix together sesame oil, tamari, and seasonings in a bowl. Sautee onions for 3 minutes over medium heat, or until translucent. Remove from pan and set aside. Sautee sugar snap peas until tender. Add more oil if necessary and all of the cauliflower, stir frying for a couple of minutes. Pour in 1/2 of the soy sauce mixture and stir fry to coat the cauliflower evenly. When the cauliflower is tender, add cooked vegetables, shrimp, and peas along with the rest of the soy sauce mixture. Push “rice” to the side of the pan and scramble eggs on the other side, moving spatula quickly to incorporate eggs with the “rice” mixture. Serve in cute bowls with chopsticks and pig out with no regrets!
Excuse me now…
~7g net carbs
P.S.- Now accepting donations of pretty plates and bowls!