In our family we have an old joke: “Gosh, I need to lose 5 lbs.” When the kids were growing up, we knew a lady who was, at my best estimate, at least 100 lbs. overweight. She would always say, “I sure would like to lose 5 lbs.” I can’t tell you how many times we struggled with keeping the giggles in.
My mother had 8 brothers and sisters, and since I came to Az as a child, I never knew any of them growing up. When I got married and had kids, our family took a trip back to West Virginia, where both Larry and I were born. The one shock and surprise I felt after that trip was that heredity is SO much a part of your life! Not one of my mom’s sisters and brothers was built any differently. No man was over 5’8″ and no woman over 5’2″. Stocky, (I liked “sturdy” better….or like my Daddy always said, “Cheyrl Ann, we are built ‘close to the ground’!)
So, no more to say about Body types. Right now Larry and I are in our Losing 5 lbs. mode. Here are 3 HEALTHY and lo-cal dishes that we will rely on for awhile (with variations, of course!)
WHIPPED SWEET POTATO SNACK
Okay, I admit it. I just saw this on Tricia’s Southern Kitchen. But for a long time I have known Sweet potatoes to be healthy and a lo cal, no fat, and full of Vitamin A, C, B6, Potassium, fiber and full of flavor. So I often just bake a sweet potato for my hubby and he loves it. But this time I took Tricia’s advice and added coconut milk. (Another healthy food!). She made little individual snack sizes to carry around and added some walnuts to the top for crunch, flavor, and nutrition. (Who AM I?????) This is how I adapted it:
2 large Sweet Potatoes
1 can coconut milk (you can use lite if you want, but it has little flavor)
Add at least one tsp. ground cinnamon, some fresh grated nutmeg (or 1/2 tsp. ground from a jar), salt and pepper
Pierce the sweet potatoes a few times, and bake at 350 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or just till a knife goes in easily. Cool potatoes, slice in 1 ” slices crosswise (this is because sweet potatoes have strings). Mash in a big bowl with all the other ingredients, then whip with a mixer or an immersion blender. Now you can serve it for dinner, or divide it into small portions for snacks. Top with some crushed walnuts or your favorite nut…..
BEEF AND BROCCOLI STIR FRY
This is a spectacular recipe for a diet, because it has lots of FLAVOR and can be absolutely loaded with any veggie you like. Also, one small sirloin steak is all that is required to easily feed 2 people. I bought 2 steaks in the meat section of the grocery store where they always put meat from yesterday. (Did you know there is a little section with day old, perfectly good, meat?) Two nice little steaks were $4.25. I marinated both of them, but only used one for our dinner.
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 Tbs. oil
1 Tbs. grated fresh ginger, or 1 tsp. dry ground ginger
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 Tbs. each: Dry Sherry and Seasoned rice vinegar
Optional: 2 Tbs. brown sugar or honey or agave.
Slice steak in thin slices and marinate for up to 24 hours.
In a wok or deep skillet on high heat, add 2 Tbs. oil and when it’s really hot, add the steak with a slotted spoon. Be careful! It will pop all over the place! (ask me how I know….)
Then add lots of veggies. I start with the peeled stalk of the broccoli chopped and a small thinly sliced onion and cooked for about a minute, then I add mushrooms, bean sprouts, peas, Chinese cabbage, and the remainder of the marinade and cook about 3 minutes, tossing frequently. Add a few cooked noodles if you want, but it’s very good just as it is!
SALMON FILETS (pictured above)
I stumbled across a fabulous new product (to me) last week when I went to IKEA. In the food section there are loads of fun foods. I figured the Swedish should know all about Salmon, so I bought their little 4 pack of filets. I didn’t hold out much hope for frozen salmon tasting good, but it is GREAT! No fishy taste, and for once in my life I did not overcook it. Here’s what I did:
Mix about a Tbs. of grainy mustard with a Tbs. honey or Agave.
Thaw filets, place in baking dish, brush with olive oil, and drizzle the honey mustard over, adding a little salt and pepper. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 10 minutes. That’s it! Pictured above is the Sweet Potato recipe I gave you, and some simple steamed cabbage. I AM FEELING SO SKINNY!!!!!!