Friday, May 26, 2017

Domino Sugar Diet - Week 12 (day 12 menu)


This week there wasn't much to do for prep. I bought a whole pork loin and cut it into chops, and that was it. Suddenly it's been super hot here instead of being cold and rainy, so this week it was nice to keep the cooking to a minimum, and have some easy stuff that didn't require a lot of attention, so I could be lazy in the heat.

For breakfast instead of having toast and jam, an egg, half an orange, milk, and coffee with sugar, I decided to put the milk in the coffee, skip the jam, and have my egg on toast with half a tangerine. Most days I ended up eating the whole tangerine, it only added about 25 calories to my day.

Poached egg, toast, half tangerine, coffee with sugar & milk - 275 calories (300 with the whole tangerine)

For lunch, instead of ice cream I decided I'd treat myself to potato chips. These are BBQ Kettle Chips, and one serving is 1 oz. My sandwich is chicken, swiss, and arugula with mayo & mustard mix.

Sandwich & Chips - 400 calories

For dinner I really wanted to figure out a way to get the diced beets onto the plate, but I don't cook beets often, and I still haven't found a way that we like them without adding a ton of oil or cheese, so we went with green beans.

For the salad I figured I'd just go ahead and make a caesar using the suggested bread in crouton form, and adding dressing and cheese instead of grapefruit. The dressing is bottled, it's Brianna's brand asiago caesar dressing. To make the salad, I combined 1 oz baby romaine leaves, 4 oz grape tomatoes, 30 g croutons, 1 tb dressing, and 1/2 oz grated parmesan.

The pork chop is 4.5 oz, cooked in a cast iron pan with no added oil. I coated it with salt & pepper, cooked it for 4 minutes on each side (including rendering the fatty edge) and then topped it with a tablespoon of minced garlic cooked in a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce. The green beans are steamed and topped with salt.

Pork chop, salad, and green beans, with kombucha - 503 calories.

Total day's calories - 1178 (or 1203 with that whole tangerine for breakfast)

Only two more weeks to go! Thanks for reading, and see you next week!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Domino Sugar Diet - Week 11 (day 11 menu)


This week I decided to make my own jam, and I made a bunch of beef meatballs for dinner. Cooking the meatballs in advance was a nice change from making them every day because it helped me get dinner ready much faster after they were all cooked.

Here's my strawberry jam bubbling away on the stove. It's 1 lb strawberries that I hulled, quartered, and froze back in April. I let them thaw and then cooked them down with 1/2 c sugar and 2 tb lemon juice. After the juices started to get really thick I pureed the mixture with a stick blender. It made 8 oz of jam.

Mmmmm tasty jam. Pureeing it after cooking makes for a thinner set. If you'd like thicker jam, puree the berries before cooking. This recipe comes out at 34 calories per tablespoon.

For breakfast, I couldn't convince myself to drink tomato juice. I always think it tastes like watery pasta sauce and it grosses me out a bit. Instead I've added butter to my toast and jam to make breakfast a bit more hearty. This looks and feels like an extremely tiny breakfast, but it was necessary to fit in my calorie dense dinner.

Toast with 1/2 tb butter and 1 tb strawberry jam, coffee & sugar - 197 calories.

Here's lunch. I don't think I've ever had a veal and butter sandwich, so instead I decided to go with ham and use up the rest of the swiss cheese from last week. I tucked some baby arugula in there instead of plain small lettuce leaves. Served with a pickle and some fresh cherries because they looked delicious at the market so I got them.

Sandwich, pickle, and 5 oz cherries - 390 calories

For dinner the menu suggested hamburgers, but I had a request to make meatballs. Home made meatballs are one of my favorite things to make, so I obliged. Unfortunately they don't photograph all that well, but I promise you there are meatballs in that sauce.

To make the meatballs, I mixed 3 lbs of ground beef with 1 cup panko bread crumbs, 1 tb worcestershire sauce, 2 eggs, and a few tb of a spice blend I made. The spice blend is equal parts cayenne, paprika, oregano, thyme, caraway seed, garlic powder, and onion powder, mixed with two parts red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper. Total it made 64 meatballs, and I have 5 with my meal. Each meatball is about 60 calories.

I baked them at 350 F for about 15 minutes, bagged up individual portions, and then boiled what I needed each night in the pasta sauce, in a very small pot with a lid, before serving.

The pasta is a Barilla spaghetti, the sauce is Classico Four Cheese, and the cheese on top is Tilamook's Farmstyle Italian blend. I went ahead and had a whole serving of pasta most nights (2 oz) but to make this lower calorie I think next time I'd have less pasta, fewer meatballs (or turkey instead of beef because that's what I usually make), and a veggie side dish like the menu suggested.

Pasta with sauce, meatballs, & cheese - 640 calories.

Total day's calories - 1227.

Thanks for reading, and see you next week!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Domino Sugar Diet - Week Ten (day 10 menu)


This week there wasn't much to prep, and most of dinner was frozen so my fridge looked pretty barren all week. I portioned some grapefruits, and ended up waiting until Monday night to cook the celeriac

For breakfast I was glad to return to my well-loved poached egg and toast. Served with half a grapefruit and coffee with milk and sugar. I ended up adding sugar to my grapefruit because these were particularly tart and I could afford the calories.

Egg & toast, grapefruit & sugar, coffee with sugar & milk - 300 calories.

This week is the first time I've noticed a difference between the PDF version of this booklet and the paper one I have. The PDF suggested a sandwich with two slices of cheese, but the paper booklet I have says sandwich with one slice of cheese and some soup. I've been missing my soup and sandwich lunch, so I went with what my book said, and added a nice little side salad so the lettuce leaves weren't left out.

The sandwich is one slice of bread, one slice of swiss cheese, and half a tablespoon of butter. The salad is the same balsamic vinaigrette dressing I've been making for previous weeks, with half an oz of gorgonzola, 1 oz of baby arugula, and 4 oz of cherry tomatoes.

Grilled cheese, salad, pickle, and beef broth - 353 calories.

In the afternoon I decided to try these little frozen macarons they have at our local grocer, with my home made take on a dirty chai. Each macaron is 50 calories, and these are lavender, chocolate, matcha, and lemon flavored. To make the drink I steeped a chai tea bag in about half a cup of water a couple minutes longer than the bag suggested, then added coffee, 2 tb half & half, and 1 tsp sugar.

Macarons and dirty chai - 270 calories.

For dinner, instead of haddock with peas and celery, we're having mahi-mahi with peas and mashed cleriac root. I wish I had taken a picture of the cleriac root, as it's kind of a crazy looking knobbly root, and the one I picked out for this week was almost as big as my head.

To prepare it, I peeled it with a vegetable peeler, cut it into chunks, boiled them until they pierced easily with a fork, drained the water, and mashed them. To serve, I separated our portion for the evening (just under 2 cups), added 1 tb butter and 4 tb half & half, then split between our two bowls. It is mildly sweet with a subtle fresh celery flavor and I really enjoyed it with the peas and spicy fish.

The mahi-mahi fillets were individually quick frozen in 4 oz portions, so to prepare them I thawed two each day, placed them on a foil lined pan, coated them with cayenne, paprika, and salt, and then baked at 350 F until they reach an internal temp of at least 135 F.

Fish, cleriac, and peas - 322 calories.

Total day's calories 1245.

Thanks for reading and see you next week!

Friday, May 5, 2017

Domino Sugar Diet - Week Nine (day 9 menu)


This week I didn't prep anything in advance, because the only thing that would have been prepared early was the roast for dinner and I wanted to serve that freshly roasted Monday night.

Cold cereal for breakfast was definitely a shake up to my normal egg breakfast routine. I didn't have toast with breakfast because I would not have finished a whole loaf of bread before it went bad if I was only eating it with breakfast, and I didn't really want my lunch "salad" as a sandwich this week. It made this breakfast really boring even though I love rice chex, and I think were I to do a cold cereal breakfast again I'd make sure to add some dried fruit or nuts to make it a little more hearty.

Not shown here is the kombucha and OJ drink I had for a snack between breakfast and lunch this week. I somehow never got a picture of it.

1 c Rice Chex Cereal, 1/2 c whole milk, coffee with sugar - 193 calories

7 oz kombucha and 4 oz OJ - 90 calories

For lunch I wanted to try to use up the cheese I had left over from last week's salad, so I picked out a couple of things in the deli that I thought would complement it well. These are super thin plain crisps topped with sliced honeycrisp apple, gorgonzola cheese, "Toscano" fennel pollen salami, and chopped provencale olives.

9 crisps, 4 oz apple, 1 oz gorgonzola, 10 olives, 1.5 oz salami - 414 calories

For dinner instead of veal I made a chuck roast in the oven. It's sitting on a bed of chopped onion and seasoned with salt, black pepper, red chili flakes, oregano, and caraway seeds. After roasting it I removed the meat and shredded it with a can of casera salsa. We had a little with our veggies every night and it reheated really well on the stove in a sauce pan.

Dinner - 3 oz casera roast, 3.5 oz carrots, 4 oz green beans, 1 tb butter, lots of black pepper - 480 calories

Total day's calories - 1177

I'm really looking forward to next week's lunch even though it's well in the territory of something I would have considered boring before starting this diet plan. Thanks for reading and see you then!

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