This marks the end of the 17 day diet live blog. Not because it has failed (far from it as I’ve lost 8 lbs to date) but because there are only so many ways I can say “damn I’m fucking hungry”…
Kefir smoothie with blueberries, check. Egg-white omelet with peppers and onion, check. Entire pot of coffee, check. Two baked tilapia fillets, tomato sauce, peppers, cottage cheese, pickle, green tea, pear, side salad, check check checkity check check. Pretty sure I just closed my eyes for a moment and daydreamed of a steak, or a pizza, or better yet a steak pizza, but woke up and all I could find was more celery.
Another morning of kefir smoothie with blueberries, egg-white omelet with peppers and onion, and another morning spent drinking an entire pot of coffee (hey, it’s allowed!) to try to fill the gaping hole in my stomach. For lunch I was able to switch it up with the leftover turkey chili from dinner last night (yay), but then came the infinite 3pm hour and I found myself eating anything and everything from pickles and cottage cheese to celery and peppers with dressing. I even made myself some green tea, and (you guessed it) still hungry. Dinner consisted of a giant chicken breast with some baked asparagus. Two hours after I finished first dinner I was back to eat the other chicken breast I cooked and was saving for tomorrow’s lunch.
Where the hell is all this food going?!
Kefir smoothie with blueberries
Egg-white omelet with peppers and onion
Pan fried tilapia fillets
Turkey Chili (no beans)
I’ve lost 1lb in 24 hours. I’m not sure how long I can sustain this as constantly being hungry is not very high on my list of things to do.
With 11 days left until DEMF, when C requested we go for another cycle of the 17 day diet before we left, being the good husband I am I said “sure”! This was Sunday, so after spending a few hours at the grocery store stocking up we of course had our “last supper” of pizza, wings, and beer before beginning the diet.
Monday dawned full of possibilities and excitement as I ate an egg-white omelet with some peppers and onion and a kefir smoothie w/ blueberries. It only got better from there with a tilapia fillet with some tomato sauce and a side salad for lunch, a bunch of random shove-in-my-face-as-many-as-I-can fruits and veggies through the afternoon, followed by eggplant parmesan and skillet chicken for dinner. So here I am summarizing day 1, and I’m still going to bed hungry (surprise).
Sure it sounds great, and even tasted great too, but those of you who know me know that even on a good day filled with carb splurges or fried gluttony I’m hungry again within an hour or two (it’s a curse, really it is). I wasn’t going to keep a journal because honestly how many times does anyone really want to read me making reference to staving third world children (remember the cabbage diet?), but here I go anyway!
As many of you know most of my blog writing is inspired by shit that pisses me off. Fortunately for Ozona Grill & Bar, the awful meal they tried to pass off in the guise of “food” was overshadowed by enjoying company with friends celebrating a birthday so they get a free pass. Seriously, if you’re thinking about going there, don’t, and they’re damn lucky that is all I’m saying.
Instead I’ve been absolutely obsessed about writing a GOOD foodie review, and our recent trip to Oddfellows in Oak Cliff for Thursday date night (ie. shit! we’re out of food!) provided the perfect impetus to give it a shot. True to Canadian form, C selected the establishment solely on the fact they have something they called Texas Poutine on the menu, but more on that later.
The restaurant itself sits on the corner of the Bishop Arts food and fashion district featuring large open air windows allowing the outdoor bar/patio seating to merge with the simply and tastefully decorated dining room utilizing natural wood to accent the exposed building structure. I had read that they really take their coffee seriously and that’s evident when you walk in, but unfortunately I was immediately sidetracked by their selection of local craft beer – next time coffee, next time. Since we were n00bs we opted to get several small plates to share and give several different dishes a shot.
First up was Mac & Cheese that C promptly declared was even better than Slows’ in Detroit (way to set the bar really high there C) – simply prepared with a nicely balanced taste and texture – followed by fried pickles with ancho sauce that were a perfectly flash fried explosion of dill and breading. Next was the much anticipated Texas Poutine. It was good, but unfortunately for us poutine purists did not live up to our expectations and ultimately was fries with bacon, pickled jalapeños, texas cheddar and homemade gravy. Ok who am I kidding I’d still eat it again, but would probably still grumble about the lack of mystery Québécois brown goodness. Next followed the surprise dish of the night, local duck quesadillas – jalapeño-ponzu marinated duck with cabbage and cilantro, and texas mozzarella served with sour cream and guacamole. Mind = blown, taste buds successfully climaxed. Apparently there was a fresh tomato, mozzarella and basil pesto salad that followed, but I was too busy making googlely-eyes at what remained of the duck quesadillas.
The tag line for Oddfellows is “Food For All”; I’m not entirely sure what that means but I’m going to just say “fucking delicious, eat here”. 4 ½ forks
- Nice cut of Pork Tenderloin
- Olive Oil
- Lemon Zest
- Fresh Thyme & Rosemary
- Sweet Potatoes
- Salt & Pepper
- In a dish mix olive oil, lemon zest, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper to desired consistency and taste. Place meat & marinade into plastic ziploc coating meat liberally, place in the fridge for a few hours.
- Preheat cash iron skillet in the oven at 400F. Place tenderloin fat side up in the pan. Cook for 45min or until internal temperature is approximately 160F. Allow meat to rest for 10mins before slicing.
- While the meat is cooking, slice sweet potatoes into desired french fry sized slices. Place in a bowl and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Cook sweet potato fries for 30min, flipping after 15mins.
Haven’t made a foodie post in a while, so here’s a great summerish pasta dish I made for C which turned out AWESOME…
Farfalle with Broccoli
Adapted from foodnetwork.com.
- 1 pound farfalle pasta
- 2 heads broccoli, trimmed to florets (about 4 cups)
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 5 strips cooked turkey bacon, diced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally. After 5 minutes, add the broccoli florets to the pasta and stir and cook for another 4 minutes. Drain pasta and broccoli, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the garlic, anchovies, and red pepper flakes and cook for 5 minutes. Add the broccoli, pasta, salt and pepper and toss. Add some of the reserved pasta water, if necessary, to make a light sauce. Transfer to a serving platter and sprinkle with Parmesan.
Maple Mustard Barbecued Pork Chops
- 1/2 cup dark amber maple syrup
- 4 tablespoons, 1/4 cup, spicy brown mustard
- 1/4 cup apple cider
- 1/4 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon allspice, eyeball it in your hand
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/3 palm full
- 8 center cut boneless pork loin chops, 1-inch thick
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- Grill seasoning blend or salt and pepper (preferred brand McCormick Montreal Steak Seasoning)
- 3 golden delicious apples, sliced across into 1/2-thick inch disks
- Preheat grill pan or nonstick griddle pan over medium high heat. Preheat electric table top grills to high. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Combine maple syrup, mustard, cider, onion, allspice and cumin in a small saucepan and cook together over moderate heat for 5 minutes until sauce begins to thicken a bit.
- Coat chops lightly in oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook chops on hot grill pan or indoor grill 3 minutes on each side. Baste chops liberally with sauce, cook 2 or 3 minutes more. Transfer chops to a baking sheet. Baste again with sauce and transfer to a hot oven to finish cooking them. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until your apples are ready to come off the grill pan.
- Wash apples but do not core or peel. Coat apple slices with a drizzle of oil. Season with grill seasoning or salt and pepper. Cover grill pan or indoor tabletop grill with as many pieces of apple as possible. As the apples get tender, pull them off and replace with more slices. Apples should cook 3 minutes on each side, you don’t want them too soft, just tender.
- Platter chops with apples along side and serve.
We went to Costco this weekend and stocked up on some meat to freeze and use for dinners over the next month or so. I picked up some absolutely GIGANTIC filet mignon steaks for $6.00 each, and with a couple fresh veggies and other items on hand, I threw together this delicious dinner for the 2 of us for under $18.
Filet Mignon with Rich Balsamic Glaze
- 2 filet mignon steaks
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper to taste
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup dry red wine
- Sprinkle freshly ground pepper over both sides of each steak, and sprinkle with salt to taste.
- Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Place steaks in hot pan, and cook for 1 minute on each side, or until browned. Reduce heat to medium-low, and add balsamic vinegar and red wine. Cover, and cook for 5 minutes on each side, basting with sauce when you turn the meat over.
- Remove steaks to two warmed plates, spoon one tablespoon of glaze over each, and serve immediately.
- 1 bunch asparagus
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- Break the asparagus from the weak point on the stem.
- Place the asparagus in a plastic bag with the olive oil and toss to coat.
- Arrange asparagus in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook at 400°F for 12-16min to desired tenderness.
Garlic Smashed Potatoes
- 4 large russet potatoes, cleaned & sliced, skin on
- 1 Tbsp butter
- splash of milk
- 1 glove garlic minced
- a bit of fresh dill
- Boil the potatoes for 15-20mins or until tender.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and smash the potatoes in the pot.