Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Q&A

What off-limits food or foods is your greatest challenge in following a low-carb lifestyle?

It’s hard to nail it down to just one.  There are many temptations out there that sometimes (I allow to) sneak in:
  • Popcorn (but just at the movies); it's surprisingly lower in net carbohydrates than I thought, but it's still a grain.
  • Alcohol - also low in carbohydrates, but it is a mammoth stall-inducer in weight loss.
  • Any confection from Fran's, a chocolatier in Seattle.  I can inhale sea salt caramels like no one else I know.
The most sinister of all temptations for me is French fries, but only if they are a certain variety.  I like the thin, shoestring variety, and there are two restaurants in Austin who make them to perfection: Cover 3, who also covers them in herbs and parmesan cheese, and P. Terry’s – a natural fast-food chain with the best skin-on, greasy and salty French fries on the planet.  And I’ve had lots of fries…
I encounter fries on a weekly basis when my husband and I have a burger each Friday at lunch before setting off for an afternoon of counseling projects.  He shoves fries into his mouth with wild abandon which causes severe cognitive and marital strife inside my head because he’s thin and has excellent blood work stats.  For the last couple of weeks I’ve intentionally brought my food journal with me to the restaurant so I can be reminded why I’m restraining myself, that it’s not just for esthetic torture.

The best thing I’m eating on a low-carb regimen that I didn’t eat before was pan-fried pancetta and slices of salami with cucumber – all without nitrates, of course.  I have to be careful that I don’t indulge in these high-fat treats without regulation. 


What tempts me varies from day to day, week to week. Lately, I have been missing comfort foods like macaroni and cheese, French onion soup with a big slice of French bread, and chicken pot pie. Instead of indulging in those foods, I am waiting it out. I know the cravings will pass and for me, none of those foods are worth the side effects of bloat, water retention, and sluggishness. 

The foods/beverages I always miss and will, on occasion, treat myself to because they are sometimes worth it, are:

  • French croissants - the smallish, flaky, buttery kind they make in Paris. Not the gigantic, doughy, flavorless croissants I usually find here. Not tempted by those one bit. 
  • Champagne
  • English muffins and crumpets for breakfast
  • Pizza - crispy, thin crust, like the pizzas I ate in Italy

To help satisfy my cravings for pizza until my next trip to Italy, I am going to make a low-carb pizza with a cauliflower crust this weekend. I discovered this recipe on Rebekah's other blog, Cupcake Caramel, and have been wanting to make it for months. 

English muffins, crumpets, and croissants are reserved for very special occasions. When I do indulge in one, it must be the very best I can locate. 

The only decent croissants in Sonoma County can be found
at Downtown Bakery and Creamery in Healdsburg 
and Chloe's

Like Rebekah said, most alcohol is low-carb, but your body burns alcohol off first before burning carbs and fat, thereby interrupting and stalling your weight loss. Having said that, I do enjoy a glass of champagne or wine a couple times per week. It's my treat of choice. 

What are your greatest food challenges when it comes to low-carb living?

Rebekah and Adrienne  


Anonymous said...

Adrienne, try this as a sub for mac 'n cheese:

It really helps me with my hankering for baked pasta. And the quantity of cheese is so low that it's pretty low calorie.

Adrienne said...

Thanks, Marsi. I will check this recipe out. Mac and cheese has been my favorite dish since I could eat solid food. Look forward to trying Clotilde's recipe out.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, I forgot about chicken pot pie... That would be cruel, to watch someone eat a chicken pot pie with gooey sauce and flaky, buttery crust. I never understood how people could eschew the crust. That's the best part!

mummaducka said...

Milk is my biggest challenge, I looove nothing better than an icy cold glass of whole milk or a homemade iced coffee with whole milk, coffee granules then ice cream Yummo. Then would be chocolate, only the good stuff, and desserts, I have been dreaming of pavlova for weeks now!

Adrienne said...

Yes...the crust is the best part. I find that true with most any food that has a crust. In fact, I could be happy just eating crust. But my body would hate me.

Adrienne said...

There used to be a low carb milk that tasted surprisingly like regular milk. But they went out of business like many low carb food companies did several years ago. I bet there is a sugar free pavlova recipe out there somewhere...I'll have to look for one.

Anonymous said...

Since pavlova is basically baked meringues with fruit, couldn't you substitute Splenda or the granular equivalent of Stevia (Truvia?) for the sugar in the meringue itself, then use agave to sweeten the berries?