Email! I get Email!

Found this in my inbox this morning:

Hi Dana,

I've been using your awesome cookbooks for years and I just today discovered your blog. I also just today found out that my cholesterol is out of control for the first time in my 52 years. I'm sure it would have happened sooner had I not been leading a low-carb life. But my husband was diagnosed with throat cancer last November ~ and all of my eating rules went right out the window. Who has time to cook meat when you're going to daily chemo and radiation treatments, working full time, managing the household, and taking care of your sick husband? Warm up a bowl of brown rice and call it dinner. Thank God I didn't get fat on the outside, but my blood got all fat on the inside.

So - my doctor in her infinite wisdom did not send me a prescription for some nasty ass drug. She said "change your diet and exercise and come back in 60 days." Now that's what I'm talking about.

So - I am on a serious mission to prove that lowering cholesterol through a low fat diet is a lie. And I'll be using your blog every day to help keep me focused and motivated. Proving them wrong is more motivation that how great I'll look and feel when I'm done!

Thank you - and I'll let you know how it goes!

Debi

This, folks, is the stuff that keeps me going. Welcome back to the Wonderful World of Low Carb, Debi. I think you'll find it actually reduces your stress. After all, when you're dealing with something this difficult, who needs crazy blood sugar swings? Dealing with a crisis with steady blood sugar is like fighting a flood while standing on solid bedrock instead of shifting sand. You're still fighting the flood, but at least you've got your feet under you, and something firm to stand on.

A couple of suggestions for easy food: Make a roast or a double-sized meat loaf when you have a free few hours, then stash it in the fridge. It's just as easy to warm up meat as it is to warm up rice. Soup is another good choice, though with the warm weather coming it's not as seasonal a choice.

And my favorite food in a crisis is eggs. Eggs, eggs, eggs. Takes five minutes to fry eggs. I can make an omelet in 3, as I happen to know, 'cause I've done it in that time slot on television. (Though, to be honest, I had the guacamole made and the cheese shredded ahead of time.) Keep hard-boiled eggs in the fridge, too, as grab-and-go protein. Episode 14 of my podcast, due to go up in the next 24 hours, has my hard-boiled egg technique detailed in it.

With the hot weather coming on, consider smoothies. They go down easy when real food seems too much to face. Too, you can whip one up, put it in a car cup, and head off to the hospital or work or wherever else you need to go.

Hope this all helps. And I very much hope your husband is okay. I know the whole community is pulling for him, and for you.

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Fail safe Hollandaise

I just read about this technique in Bon Appetit, tried it out, and it worked brilliantly!
Pour hot water in your blender jar to warm it. While the bowl is warming up, melt your butter. When the butter's melted, pour the hot water out of the blender jar, wipe it dry, and then add your egg yolk and lemon juice. Blend for a few seconds until frothy. With blender running, slowly drizzle in the hot butter,leaving as much of the solids behind as possible. Season to taste with salt and more lemon juice. Kind of like making mayonnaise -
It is so much fun to try new techniques like this.
BTW, Dana, I've bought your new 15 min. book and love it. I already had the old one, but was looking forward to the update. Have made quite a few recipes out of it and all turned out fantastic. The Snickers smoothy is a big hit with the family!
Last night I announced I'd be making the salmon soup and my almost-three-year-old immediately sat down at the table and kept asking when it would be ready. Thank goodness it's fast!:)

Quick cooking?

Two words: slow cooker. :)

I cut up and cook two chickens at a time in mine, then freeze the serving-size pieces to warm up in a hurry later. I brown the pieces in a little oil (olive or coconut), make a sauce with the pan drippings, seasonings & a splash of white wine or sherry, and pour over the chicken in the crock pot. Set the pot to low & cook for four or five hours.

Yum!

Mary D.

Blenders

I'm a big fan of Cook's Illustrated (even though they consider low fat to be healthy, they still have plenty of -unwitting- low carb recipes and many of their recipes are easy to convert to LC). I especially enjoy their equipment reviews. They reviewed blenders a couple of years ago and I bought their top pick: the KitchenAid 5 speed blender, model KSB580. You can get one for about $90 on Amazon.
http://www.amazon.com/KitchenAid-5-Speed-Blenders-Polycarbonate-Metallic/dp/B001F2COBK/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1303321088&sr=8-5
This blender is seriously one of the best pieces of kitchen equipment I own. Anything I put in it requires very little if any stirring. The motor is powerful. It crushes ice like a dream (smoothies come out great). I use it all the time to make meat puree baby food for my 8 month old. If you can afford it, buy it, and you'll be very, very pleased.

Kitchen Aid Blender

Sounds wonderful! Unfortunately, like so many people we are currently on a very strict budget. But you never know what will turn up at the local Goodwill! There was a brand-new, in-the-box, top-of-the-line Crockpot(tm) just yesterday. And a couple of days ago there was a brand new BreadMan bread machine. I got my Nu-Wave oven there, again, new in the box, for $20 -- that's a machine that runs something like $150. So I'll keep my eyes open for a Kitchen Aid blender.

Interesting. I find low-carb

Interesting. I find low-carb so much quicker and easier than high-carb and low fat. Beans have to be soaked overnight. Potatoes take an hour to cook in the oven (and they're not nearly as good with ketchup as they are with butter or sour cream). Boneless, skinless chicken breasts from the grocery store have to be soaked in brine to make them edible. Fruit is quick, but it's so sugary that you're back to square one in an hour. It tends to leave you eating a lot of canned and processed foods if you're pressed for time.

Fatty meat is tender and doesn't need much preparation. Even a three-pound chuck roast is ready in about an hour if you have a pressure cooker. And things like sausage, burgers, bacon, cheese, salad, etc. are quick and easy.

I hope we get to hear Debi's

I hope we get to hear Debi's results when she heads back to the doctor.

I completely agree that eggs are outstanding - I carry hard-boiled eggs to work most days.

For smoothies - Any recommendations on how to pick out a good blender would be appreciated. The last 2 I bought didn't work - one plain didn't start at all, and the other leaked like crazy! I really want a good blender!

Blenders

I have no brilliant advice. I bought mine at the Goodwill, where I buy at least half of what's in my house, and 2/3 of my clothes.

Leaky blenders are often cured by a new gasket, however. Worth trying. Look at the website of whatever company made it, or at your local independent (not big chain) hardware store.

Thanks

Well, I'll check for a new gasket then.

I get a lot of my stuff at Goodwill, Savers etc also. Especially new pants, since my size is changing so fast it'd be stupid to get full-priced new clothes!

Debi

I just don't like to cook when my husband works late. He teaches a couple of times a week. A couple of the shortcuts I do is,

Make a extra large meatloaf, slice them freeze individually and grab one when I don't feel like cooking. Make a quick salad and heat up the meat loaf.

We buy a whole, cooked ham and slice it and freeze those pieces individually, too. And just have some veggies with it.

Buy cooked shrimp. Cooks fast

Make hamburger patties and freeze them individually. Cook up in ten minutes, especially when I make them smallish.

Freeze left-overs to be a meal some other time. Like, after thanksgiving, I make TV dinners out of the left overs.

Cook a whole package of chicken when you have awhile, freeze them individually and heat up as many pieces as you want.

Make some kinds of soup that you can freeze small portions in baggies, to eat with a meat choice.

There are more but I think you get the idea. If you get into a mood to cook, cook extra and freeze some. And if you do it in individual portions you can eat one or two, or combine them. I don't have a huge freezer, but I can keep the whole packages frozen, or cook them and put them back. They don't take up much more room.

Hope this helps.