After people see my blog/receive a plethora of baked goods from me, I get asked the same question a lot. "How are you NOT 300 pounds?". Well the answer is actually pretty simple. I don't eat dessert for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! Well it's little more complicated than that. For one, I go to the gym at least 4 - 5 days a week for about an hour. Second, I try to give away about 98% of what I bake. Usually I'll keep a couple of whatever I make in the house and send the rest out of the house as soon as possible. At the very least, I put it in the freezer (but let's be honest, that's not gonna keep me away for too long). I also (try) to limit my baking, and desserts in general, to once a week. Obviously, there are exceptions to this but I do well with guidelines so that's what I tell myself. And finally, and most importantly, I actually eat really healthy when it comes to non-dessert related items. I do the whole shebang. Whole grains, lots of fresh fruit and veggies, and lean proteins.
Sugar is my weakness. I go all out when it comes to sugar. Everything I bake is usually all the way. I give myself that liberty because of the above reasons and because when it comes to savory stuff I have no problems going light. I use reduced fat/non fat items on a regular basis. I swap out lean ground turkey for ground beef whenever I can. (I can't even remember the last time I ate a cheeseburger). You could tell me that I'm not allowed to eat another french fry for as long as I live and I'd be okay with that; but if you were to tell me no more cookies or ice cream then we'd have a problem.
So how come all you've seen so far is the sweet stuff? Well for one the blog is called "SugarCooking". But more realistically there are actually a few good reasons. 1) It gets dark around 6:00 at this time of year and that makes it hard to take pictures when we're sitting down to dinner. 2) Even if there was enough light to take pictures, I'm sometimes slow and I'd feel bad letting the food get cold so I could take pictures of it. 3) I actually eat a lot of the same foods (whole wheat pasta with a turkey bolognese, this pasta dish, grilled chicken with veggies, turkey and black bean chili) on a weekly basis and that would just be boring to blog about.
So why am I telling you about all this? Well, I'm going to make an effort to start blogging about more of the savory stuff I make. I've gotten a little faster at taking pictures and I have a good lighting set up now so that will take care of reasons 1 & 2 above. But the real driving force is I think this will inspire me to broaden the dinner repertoire in my house. So, I present to you the first of hopefully many healthy, savory dishes. This thai style pineapple fried rice is delicious. I was so impressed with how it came out. It was fragrant and flavorful and really hearty.
It came together really quickly. Just make sure you have all your ingredients prepped and measured before you start because everything goes into the pan pretty quickly so you won't have time to be running around measuring stuff in between steps. I chose to use brown rice instead of white rice. I also added tofu (quick, easy, and healthy) but I think chicken or shrimp would be a great addition too. The pineapple is absolutely the star of the meal though. It adds such an unexpected brightness and sweetness to the dish that really balances with the spices.
Thai Style Pineapple Fried Rice Recipe: Adapted from Closet Cooking
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 2 shallots (thinly sliced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 red chili (optional, I omitted it because I was scared)
- 1 egg (lightly beaten)
- 3 tablespoons chicken stock (or vegetable broth)
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce (or soy sauce)
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 cup cashews (roasted)
- 3-4 cups cooked brown rice (preferably a day old)
- 1 cup pineapple cut into bite sized pieces
- tofu (or any protein) (drained and cubed)
- soy sauce
- 1/4 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
- 1/4 cup currants (or raisins)
- 2 green onions (sliced)
1. Heat the oil in a pan.
2. Add the shallots, garlic, chillies and stir-fry until fragrant, about a minute.
3. Add the egg and stir-fry for a minute.
4. Add the chicken stock, fish sauce, curry powder and sugar and stir-fry.
5. Add the cashews and stir-fry for 30 seconds.
6. Add the rice, break up any clumps and stir-fry for a few minutes.
7. Add the tofu and soy sauce to taste (I used about 1 tbls),gently stir.
8. Add the pineapple, peas and raisins and stir-fry to mix them in.
9. Remove from heat and serve garnished with chopped green onions.