Well, with much kicking and screaming, I commenced the South Beach diet about a month ago. I was not at all happy about this, but it felt like a necessary step, plus my other family members were doing it, so I gave it a try. Much to my shock, it not only is NOT torture, but it’s working. I’m becoming acquainted with some pieces from my wardrobe from long ago, and the food! The food is not. Bad. At. All.
After the initial cold-turkey first four days or so, when I was very sad and freaked out, I got used to the lean meat/vegi thing. It helped a lot that we could snack on cheese, since I am a cheese maniac.
But I thought I would share here some of our favorites from the last month.
One of our big surprises was pork loin. The first thing one does on the SBD is to carefully study the list of “allowed foods” because it isn’t a long one. I noticed that “pork loin” was A-OK. We have never eaten a pork loin, let alone prepared one in our own home, and the sound of it was not appetizing to certain family members (especially my husband, who swore off pork forever after hearing the sound of pigs being slaughtered outside our window on Christmas Eve in Estelí, Nicaragua almost twenty years ago). But I could not bear the idea of being sentenced to a life of chicken breast and salmon, so…
I remembered an episode of Take Home Chef, that goofy show where the young blonde chef accosts people in grocery stores and then follows them home and shows them how to make some awesome meal. He jumped out of the car about a block from this woman’s house and tore an armful of rosemary of one of her neighbor’s bushes. Then he brought it home, soaked it in water for a while, rubbed the big hunk of meat (I think it was actually a leg of lamb, not pork loin) with garlic, salt and pepper, wrapped it all in rosemary and put it on the grill. The family went nuts over it. It looked so good, I could practically smell it through the television screen.
WE happen to have a monster rosemary bush in our front yard. It’s about the size of a small buffalo, lying down. I took to it with a pair of shears and hacked off an armload of very fragrant little branches. I soaked it, then slathered the pork loin with garlic, salt and pepper. I tied the pork loin up in the rosemary and threw it on the grill. Guess what? The family went nuts. We’ve had it twice now and it does not fail to garner amazing groans of delight. For an extra touch, I put a small dollop of pesto on the pork and mmmmm, is that good.
Thanks to some online South Beach Diet forums, I’ve also found creative ways to get around the no-carbs thing. It’s actually only NO carbs right at the start, but then it turns into low-carb, complex carb.
My family really likes chicken parmesan, but I thought that was out forever due to the breadcrumb thing. NO! But someone suggested using almond meal (ie., crushed almonds) to bread the chicken. We tried it a few days ago. Mmmmmmm. Very delicious. Add some no-sugar tomato sauce and some part skim mozzarella, and … yum.
This isn’t so bad at all. And incidentally, I’ve lost 14 lbs eating this good stuff!