Part III will come soon. I have lots of jars!
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Saturday night certainly turned out well. We went with a couple who lives in our building to the village to see some artsy shows and all felt like we were in college again and we ended on a sweet note. Vinieros. Not sure if you've heard of it, but it's a legendary pastry shop in NYC. We didn't even share. We each got a humongous slice of cake apiece and tried each others. None of the slices were entirely finished but I'm proud to say that I chose exactly what I wanted AND it turned out to be light and wonderful, as opposed to heavy...and wonderful. Still though, that was a LOT of cake, late at night.

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Interestingly, when I woke up, the scale didn't seem to take too much notice of the previous night's excess. So off we went to another picnic breakfast. The picnic blanket ALREADY needs a bath and it's not even June! Then off to hot yoga, a bit of a walk and a sticky trip to a bar later to watch the Yankee game. Wings? Waffle Fries? Beer? Yes, yes yes. This morning, the scale finally caught up. Sigh, I was doing pretty pretty well! Actually, I'll be honest, I only had 3 wings, a handful of waffle fries and really filled up on TONS of veggies. But those wings were SO salty, I legitimately feel like a huge bag of water sloshing around from all the retention. Between the two of us, Boyfriend and I drank like 2 gallons of water when we got home!

Advice: If you want to slim down super-fast and noticeably (though maybe temporarily), cut out as much salt from your diet as possible. You'll definitely see a difference.

Not that all this has stopped me from having a very full breakfast (in anticipation of a looong run in the gym). Seeing how I really don't like to exercise, you'd think I'd at least attempt to eat less. Nope. Guess my love of food trumps my dislike of exercise.

A quick note about exercise: I don't like goal-oriented exercise. Give me a hike, skiing, any sort of organized sport or social exercise and suddenly I'm Ms. Fitness. I was actually SUPPOSED to go on a hike today but between others ovesleeping and the weather being hot/humid/ex-rainy, I decided to simply bum around NYC.

But before I start my day, here's the recipe for today. Actually it's a redo of a previous post, but a bit more detailed. I have others on the backburner, but I figure everyone's out and about, I might as well not post the new stuff yet!

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Baba Ganoush-Take II (with pictures)

First, cut of ends of one large eggplant (though I would recommend doing this with two small ones, they are better tasting) and slice in half.

Place on casserole dish with about 1/2 inch of water on the bottom (or an inch, whatever) and liberally salt and pepper both halves.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 40 mins to an hour, or until a knife easily pieces from one end to the other.

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Then the much less fun part. You have to scrape the insides out of the eggplant =(

I always do it when it's hot (in the interest of time, since I cook at night and get sleepy!) so there's sometimes an ouch factor. Still, this isn't as fun as scraping the spaghetti squash.

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Then, assemble the ingredients:

1 cup Greek Yogurt (Fage o% is my fave)
1 lemon (zest and juice) + 1 tbsp lemon juice
2 cloves garlic (grated)
Salt, pepper, cumin and paprika to taste (start with liberal helpings of each)

Note: the eggplant is in the clear bowl (second from the right) and what you see in the middle is my FOOD SCALE! This has been magical for me.  $20 so well spent.


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All the ingredients just go together in the blender or food processor bowl.

The grossness of this picture is very sad, because it depreciates the tastiness of the final product. Oh well, there it all is. In the bowl of my food processor.

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Check this out: this is my food processor. It's actually a hybrid food processor and immersion blender. I've been in conversation with Serenity who reads my blog (yay!) and who uses her immersion blender to make creamy soups (without cream) and mashed potatoes. This sounds perfect for me but I feel like if I stick this thing into a pot and turn it on, everything will go flying and make SUCH a mess. But she's converting me, day by day and I think that with today's plans turning out to be such a mess and full of errands and the gym, making a nice cool soup might be just what I want. I'm considering a gazpacho vs. a squash soup.

Oops, got side tracked.

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Here's what I got from the big eggplant and 1 cup of yogurt.

Calories? Eggplant was 500 gm when it went in the oven, 370 gm after being stripped of it's skin and having given up a lot of it's water. I decided to stick with the higher weight so it's about 130-150 cals. The 1 cup yogurt was another 130 cals and I'm thinking that if I was generous with the eggplant, I can just consider the garlic/lemon juice to add only another 20 cals or so. That makes this entire 2 cup jar + about another 6oz (.75 cups) excess baba ganoush to be 300 cals. So....for 1/4 cup (or 4 tbsp) that's about 30 cals. Compare with 90 cals for 2 tbsp of regular Sabra brand Baba Ganoush and I think that the less creamy texture is totally worth it. The taste is pretty similar. If the creaminess is really important, add another bit of yogurt, or just use plain yogurt instead of Greek. This was made on Thursday night, the jar is still almost half full and I've been snacking on it for a while!

Mmmm....volume eating is wonderful.

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Slather the stuff on 4 of these for a great 100 calorie snack.

That's all for me today. Still to come: sesame-panko crusted tilapia (those this isn't news since I am crusting EVERYTHING with panko/sesame lately), corn muffins with bacon (also healthy!) and "not quite creamy" mushrooms and rice. And hopefully, should the immersion blender finally stop scaring me, soup!

 


Comments

Serenity
05/30/2011 14:28

thanks for the nod on the immersion blender, but i have put it in the pot with no splatter (one fail was in a sautee pan). i hope you like the results. veniero's is such a gem - i think anything you eat there is a pass! i really enjoy the way you cook and are willing to experiment with your limited space and time. hope you keep up the good work.

Reply
Rebecca
06/01/2011 05:27

You should try using tahini for extra creaminess. Clearly it works in baba ganoush but I've also started putting it in homemade tomato sauces etc and it's yummy.

Nice work blogging!!!

Reply
06/01/2011 14:51

Serenity,

Haha, you're welcome for the nod, but I still haven't gotten up the courage to use it. Well actually I just haven't had the time or the vegetable matter. Work is nuts so I'm just blogging back recipes!

Rebecca,

Actually I talk about tahini in a previous post. I'm personally not a huge fan of it (I use yogurt to replace the creaminess) and the nutritional value of tahini vs. yogurt is a little skewed. Loads of people love tahini but as someone who loves volume in her food, I feel that using tahini would cut down on volume and for me, at least, on taste. I DO love tahini in it's dessert form, halvah, but barely let myself have any!
On a personal note, I miss you! =)

<3 Dr. Jules

Reply
06/02/2011 22:38

definitely going to be trying this one out. I think it would be really yum on bbq fresh fish or prawns too

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06/04/2011 19:59

Tani,

If you look back a little you'll find that there's a "summer sauce" recipe that is REALLY wonderful for fish/prawns etc. Let me know if you like it!! Or any improvements that you've made to it. It's kind of my own invention and I've only done it twice so I think it could still use work.

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06/15/2011 03:15

After buying eggplant four times with the intention of making this, I finally managed to use them for intended purpose! And I am so glad I did. Yuuummmmy! Its so delicious!
I found out at the very end that we do not infact have any lemon in the house, so just omitted. also, just ran out of cumin, so substituted your spices with a garam masala mix.
I had a bit of trouble when roasting my eggplant, It totally dried out, will have to put more water in next time, and I think I will double the amount of eggplant as it didn't make enough.
also, I didn't know how to grate garlic, so I finely chopped two massive cloves, and now my dip is a little overpowering. Luckily we are garlic lovers in this house, and its winter here and the whole family is sick!
Anyway, love it, so easy, low low cal and delicious. Definitely making this again :)
Suggestions for use (other than heaped on crackers?)

Reply
06/15/2011 11:28

Hi Tani,

It's ok to sub out spices and seasonings, though I always thought the lemon was important. I always have squeezy lemon juice around for when I'm out of fresh lemons. As for roasting the eggplant, you can put it in cut side down but ALSO, the top DOES dry out and it's the middle that's all gooey. I like the crusty part actually.

Haha on the garlic, I did the same thing last time I made it and just always had some gum on hand after eating! Grating garlic is the same as grating anything else, just use your cheese grater. You can also use garlic powder, which I think is easier and just as good.

Use other than crackers? I've put it on bread/wraps with falafel or chicken/turkey. You can dip celery into it and I'm sure it would be fine slathered on some sort of poultry meat!

I'm so so glad you like it! I think it probably sits in the middle of the pack with regard to the store-bought stuff (i.e. tastes way better than some, not as good as others) but really is significantly less caloric. I hope it helps you keep within the net calorie counts you've set up for yourself!

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    I'm a recent graduate from medical school and a pathology resident living in New York City. Like most girls living in the city, I've found that a lot of my social life revolves around the regular consumption of high-calorie food and alcoholic beverages. I've decided to start a blog about how I am trying to beat the bulge by eating and cooking defensively between social engagements and how even a busy girl can fit exercise into a busy life.

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