Sunday, April 27, 2008

Fun With Low-carb Cooking

One of the things that got out of control last week were my sugar numbers.

I've been spiking all over the place (one 1am reading put me at a startling 397). This has been a combination of stress and bad food choices. I've been partaking of the free lunches at work (and breakfasts - they brought in bagels twice this week), going out at night or ordering in cause I've been too tired to think about cooking, and etc. Problem is, this type of behavior just perpetuates itself. You eat crap because you feel tired and crappy, and the crap makes you feel tired and crappy.

Three separate over-300 readings this week, lethargy, sluggish brain, and some crazy-leaning thoughts at work and at home (the sort where I'm able to go, "Wow, I'm crazy!" before acting on them, thank God) reminded me that it's time to get my ass back into gear.

The difficult thing about getting back on track is that I'm a total carb addict. It sort of goes hand in hand with being a diabetic. Comes with the same genes. Give me a few days in a row of complex carbs, and I crave and I crave and I crave. The longer I go indulging, the harder it is to quit.

So I sat down this weekend and put together some great low carb food to get me over the withdrawal period. The first being the Old Man's great pumpkin whip (I substitute fat-free half and half for milk and lite cool whip for whipped cream). The second was this great recipe for flourless peanut butter cookies (modified by me for extra low carbness):

MMMMMMMMMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm cookies!!!

1 cup peanut butter (I found a 5-carb per serving peanut butter)
1.5 cups Splenda
1 large egg (I'm going to try 2 eggs next time - came out a little crumbly)
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips (at least 60% cacao. I prefer 80% when I can get it)
1 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 350. Mix together peanut butter, Splenda, egg(s), and baking soda until smooth. Stir in chocolate chips. Roll dough into rounded tablespoon-sized balls and place onto ungreased baking sheet (or pan) 2 inches apart.

Bake at 350 until cookies are puffy and golden but still soft to the touch - about 10 minutes. Let the cookies cool for at least 20 minutes.

After that, I started working on converting one of my favorite old pasta recipes. I've been sick of eating low carb tortilla variations for lunches, so I started cooking up my favorite easy recipe from Isabel Allende's Aphrodite cookbook (highly recommended).

In this instance, I substituted spaghetti squash for noodles.

1/3 cup olive oil
1 cup bottled marinated artichokes (chopped)
1 jar pimientos (marinated red peppers)
1 medium spaghetti squash
2 large tomatoes
6 green olives
2 ounces goat cheese
Handful of chopped basil
Salt and pepper to taste

Bake the spaghetti squash at 375 for about 1 hour. When it's tender, cut it in half, scrape out the seeds, and then use a big spoon to scoop out the insides and put them in a big mixing bowl.

Heat up the olive oil and the oil from the pimentos and the artichokes in a big wok.

Chop up the tomatoes, pimientos, olives, and artichokes.

Now pour all chopped veggies and spaghetti squash into the wok with the warm oil. Add goat cheese and basil. Salt and pepper to taste, and combine thoroughly.

When I packed all of this up into tupperware containers, I got 3 lunches and tonight's dinner all out of this one big pot.

With a little effort, you can live on good, low-carb food. In my case, it's worth the added time if I'm going to get a clear head and optimal functioning for the week out of it.

3 comments so far. What are your thoughts?

Jackie M. said...

Man, I want a cookie now.

Hannah said...

Oh, wow. That pumpkin whip sounds awesome.

Ismone said...

I love, love, love spaghetti squash, it is awesome. I am also going low carb (for hypoglycemia/acne reasons) so I look forward to reading more. :)