Relax, Mom, I'm not on a diet. However, tonight I did cook from a diet cookbook [again]. I took a short break last night to make Granada Paella from The Urban Vegan and I am continually surprised by how astonishingly tasty it is! There are relatively few foods I could eat so fast (from enthusiasm) that I would give myself a bellyache. This is one of them.
It's a shame it doesn't look as good as it tastes. I think part of that is due to my negligence in checking the frozen veggies before I went shopping, so there were no frozen peas to add, keeping the dish a generally red and beige combo...not exciting.
I've noticed something about my shopping/menu planning. There are certain things I take for granted - I just assume certain things will always be there. As a result, I have found myself in the same position I was in last night more than just a few times. In my brain, though, frozen vegetables reproduce in the freezer and all of my herb/spice bottles are magical and bottomless.
My empty jar of basil begs to differ.
Regardless, tonight brought us back to The Low GI Cookbook with Chicken [Seitan] and [Baby] Bok Choy Stir-Fry.
This meal, amusingly enough, looks far more delicious and fun than the Paella. Looks are not terribly deceiving, either. While I certainly won't say that this recipe would make me choke in my excitement to pile it all in my mouth, it is extremely tasty, simple, and Second-Helping-Mister-Approved.
I had to make a few tweaks, obviously, as I mentioned when I constructed the menu. For this meal, seitan replaced the chicken (and I'm pretty sure it improved the dish both nutritionally and taste-wise). I also used my favorite brand of rice vermicelli to replace the egg noodles called for in the recipe. Finally, I needed to replace the oyster sauce and it seemed to me that the best way to do this was to sub my vegan Worcestershire sauce. My tastebuds agreed. I have never actually eaten 'real' oyster sauce to my recollection, so I have absolutely no idea what it tastes like, but I do know that Mister and I were mutually pleased with the way the sauce came out.
Our little friend also seemed excited about dinner, since he came out of hiding and made a quick dash across the back of the sink to the stove to check out the pot while we were eating! Although Angst seemed pretty sure the little bugger was hiding behind the toaster over this morning, we were starting to think he'd found his way out. I think Mister is waiting for it to starve to death and just hoping he finds it while I'm at work and can dispose of it with no tears.