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Monday, June 7, 2010

My First Four Summer Slimmin' Challenge Meals: And I went for Convenience BIG TIME!

Yeah, I am not in the running to be America's Next Top Chef. In fact, I blissfully swanned through my formative years without learning to cook. In fact, I shamefully confess that I skated right up to age 22 without learning culinary skills, and I only bothered when I met hubby and started experimenting with some light meals for him after our engagement.  I still recall trying to make a custard with my best pal (who also wasn't much of a cook) and calling my elder sister to ask her what the heck a "water bath" was, and I still am not sure what a braising is.)

This is especially ironic since I love watching cooking shows--Giada, Mario, Gordon, The Contessa, Iron Chef, etc--where I have learned SOME stuff...

Yeah, sure, over the years I'd make some boxed stuff--remember those weird pizzas from Chef Boy-R-Dee you prepped at home back in the 70's?--and would do breakfast for my nieces and nephews (eggs and pancakes are easy, right). And I could prep sandwiches and heat up cans of soup.

But all those wonderful down-home Cuban recipes my mom made, I feel a lot of regret at not asking her to teach me. I really do. And I feel a little bummed that my ill health in childhood meant my mom would scoot me out of the kitchen with "don't get your hands wet"--another reason she never let me do laundry, a skill I learned from hubby after we got back from the honeymoon--as she believed it would make my asthma worse. (Old wives' tales.)

Pretty much, I still avoid cooking anything fancy or elaborate. I remember too vividly getting up from our dinner table when we were newlyweds and throwing out the food that came out inedible. I make great veggie lasagna. I'll make simple sauteed chicken or pork. I tend ot eat veggies with minimal heating (steaming, sauteeing, nuking). I have a tiny, inefficient kitchen with nearly zip counter space, which is only a hindrance since I'm just not a nifty, efficient cook. I manage the simplest of meals, that's all.

I've talked to hubby about maybe taking some cooking lessons--I'd have to take vegetarian, cause all the ones I checked on locally that are regular cooking classes, feature a lot of seafood--which I am terribly allergic to and hubby detests--and a lot of meat cuts I refuse to touch . (I have this raw meat icky-phobia.)  So, I've done minimal research into finding a vegetarian cooking class for beginners, but the only ones I saw so far that looked promising were for raw cooking and I don't wanna go that route. My husband just wouldn't eat it. It would be a waste of time and produce.

Anyway, I've kept my meals so far very simple and convenience-based, meaning I am going to take a look at my stock of canned food accumulated over the last couple of hurricane seasons that have gone ignored. (I have to do a look-see every couple years for what canned goods have expired, and it's now early hurricane season and I have to do that.)

So, don't expect any Mario Batalli or Gordon Ramsay or Bobby Flay or Nigella Lawson beauties in my meal plans. Expect "ready in fifteen minutes" type of meals, until I can get those lessons. :D

Here we go:

Breakfast yesterday was437 cals (including supplements)--1 orange, 2 cups coffee with sucralose, 2 slices ww toast, 2 eggs scrambled, 1 slice 2% American cheese, Strawberry-water (I chop fruit into water to give it the fruit essence flavor.)

Lunch:  2 cups organic arugula with 1/8 cup of shaved parmesan, a can's worth of Amy's Chunky Tomato Bisque soup with 1/4 cup skim milk and 1 serving of FiberGourmet Rotini added; 1 cup Rainier cherries, strawberry essence water. Not shown: 1/2 scoop Any Whey unflavored mixed with 1 scoop BSN Dessert Lean cinnamon roll flavor protein (as this meal was not high enough in protein). Total count for this (including protein and supplements)--741 calories.

Supper: Healthy Choice Classic Meatloaf frozen dinner (my SparkPeople stats had me low on iron and folate, so I decided to have something with beef and have romaine), 1/2 cup spinach, 2 cups romaine with garden veggies (peppers, cukes, tomato) with 2 tbsp Annie's organic Sesame Goddess dressing, 1/2 cup raspberries, 1 cup watermelon (dang, it was so sweet), and cantaloupe-essence water. This supper was 622 cals.

Breakfast today: 3 egg white scrambled with chopped tricolor peppers and onions, tomato with EVOO (1 tsp), 1/2 cup mango, 1/2 cup papaya, 2 slices ww toast with 2 slices 2% American cheese, kiwi-cantaloupe essence water. I used Herbamare to salt my eggs (adds a bit of celery/herb flavor, which is nice).  This breakfast was 455 cals, including the 9 calories for my supplements.

So, how was your first day and second morning in Summer Slimmin'? Are  you cooking beautiful, produce-filled meals? (You must be better in the kitchen than I am!)

Happy day to you!


SherRon, Shoes To Lose said...

Even without a ton of cooking skills, your meals look delicious!

karen said...

They look GREAT!!! I've found that a lot of my kitchen skills have come from just going "oooh - these might go good together" and a lot of the time they actually do :)
Good luck finding the perfect fit for a class to take! I think something like that would be SO much fun!!!