Friday, May 18, 2007

Low Carb Shepherd's Pie

It's raining tonight here in B.C., so I was trying to think of something delicious and nutritious to enjoy with my glass of Merlot. Truth be told, I have a weakness for all things burger. In fact, just recently after viewing David Hasselhoff's drunken' lip lock with his hamburger, I actually thought to myself...God that burger looks good. I could not have cared less that he was lying on his floor shirtless and slobbering incoherent grunts....David aside; I just wanted to have what he was having, minus the you tube demonstration of course. So tonight, rather than a D.H. burger, I think that I will enjoy a low carb Shepherd's Pie. How do you make it and why the low carb? After so much kerfuffle in the media and so forth with respect to low carb diets, it has now been revealed, albeit reluctantly, that they actually might be good for you. I've tried every diet on the universe, and seem to come out of this one, happy and well fed. So here is what I made tonight:

Boil two heads of medium sized cauliflower in a nice big pot of water. In a separate pan, fry up about 8 slices of bacon, but cut them up into little cubes first. Also add 4 stalks of chopped up celery, and chop up and add an onion. Fry all over a medium heat until cooked and softened. Add hamburger and cook until all the pink has gone. Add some salt and pepper, and sage if you like too. Drain the hamburger and set aside for a bit. In the meanwhile, whip up four egg whites and blend until they are nice and thick like whip cream. When the cauliflower is done, drain the water and add to the egg whites with 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. Salt and pepper. Add 1 egg and some mushroom soup, 1/2 can without water will be fine to the hamburger mixture then o a butter up casserole dish and top with cauliflower mixture. Sprinkle with a bit more cheese and more pepper. Put in the oven at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

Labels: ,

Thursday, May 03, 2007

To Die For Swedish Mustard Sauce

Have you ever had a Gravalax salad with Swedish Mustard Sauce? OK - it will be all you need for lunch. You won't even need much of it because the flavors are so satisfactorily fabulous (did that make sense?) Swedish Mustard is used in Sandwiches and also over top of this salad, so use it as a salad dressing as well. I am sure you could keep it for a week in a container in your refrigerator, but please don't quote me. Find out where in your town you can get Gravalax....I bought mine at the IKEA grocery store as I've heard that it's the best. Then you get yourself some gorgeous mixed salad leaves, I love the organic mix with a small slice of Gravalax, then drizzle with mustard sauce. Geez, I nearly forgot. Garnish this salad with a little fresh dill. Please don't pull dill out of the pickle jar...go get some fresh dill at the grocery store. Also, please sip a glass of your favorite wine with this meal. You will feel like you've had an amazing lunch.

Swedish Mustard Sauce: 1/2 cup of dry mustard, 1/2 cup of sugar (I'm sure a low calorie sweetener would be good too), 1 tsp. of salt, pinch of white pepper, 2 tbsp. of white vinegar, 1/4 cup of boiling water, 1/4 cup of vegetable oil, 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Put all of the ingredients into a blender and blend for 1 minute. Scrape the sides with a rubber spatula or your hand(!) and process for 30 seconds longer. The mustard sauce should be a little thicker than heavy cream. Store in a glass jar, well sealed in the fridge and let sit for one day so that the flavors blend. You won't be disappointed.


No Condiments Required Omelet

One thing I've really come to learn from watching cooking shows is that keeping a dish simple is better. Too often I have heeded to the more is better attitude, thereby plying any food with too much stuff. I remember once making a dish, I think it was chicken, and I doused it will all of my favorite flavors, wine, sour cream, and possibly 5 other ingredients. Problem is, when you douse any food with lots of delicious flavors, it doesn't stand out. Keep your dishes simple so you can actually taste and celebrate the food that you are eating. This morning I made a simple omelet and it didn't need any condiments to complete it's divinity. For one person, whisk three eggs together with a bit of milk - 1/8th of a cup maybe. Then pour the eggs into a warm, buttered pan. I've just come to realize how delicious butter is when cooking with eggs. I've cooked too many egg white scrambles in the microwave, but butter is better in a good old fashioned pan - but let the butter brown just a little, it will really heighten the flavors. OK - once the egg is poured over the melted butter in the pan, add a sprinkle of thyme and especially a tsp. of fresh tarragon leaves. I am so into tarragon right now. Then add one chopped green onion, and half a chopped up tomato, a slice of feta cheese, I crumbled mine up and put it all over the omelet. Then if you want real decadence that will hold you over until dinner, add just a couple of tiny squares of cheddar cheese. Check once in a while the bottom of the egg to see when it is done. When it's done, flip it in half and take off of the element and let it cool and melt just a little more. The tarragon really comes through in this omelet complementing this comforting egg dish.