Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Return to Cooking and Pressure Cooker Rant

Well, I'm always cooking, just trying new recipes again.

First, I signed up for He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named's web site, a "gift" from my husband. Plenty of stuff to read there, from newsletters to forums or recipes; a slew of lectures on mp3; the doctor himself commenting on various posts on a daily basis, not just when the mood hits and not just on important stuff he wants to argue against.

Anyway, one of the nice things I discovered over there is this thing called a microsalad, or confetti salad. You take a bunch of raw salad ingredients - leafy greens, green & yellow veggies, even fruit - and toss it all into a food processor and chop it up fine, so it looks like confetti. The reasoning behind doing this is that it makes the micronutrients easier to be absorbed into the body and because the overall bulk is reduced you can eat a lot more of these very low calorie dense foods. I always hated salads, no matter what leafy greens or raw veggies I put in there. Drowning them in creamy (high fat) salad dressings helped a bit, but I still choked them down, not because I liked them but because I had to.

I decided to try doing it the microsalad way and OMG! The flavors just POPPED! All these various types of lettuce and greens and just a bit of beets and onions and wow! It actually tasted a bit sweet! There will be no problem getting me to eat a salad before my main dish like Dr. McDougall suggests in the MWLP book! I've been doing this for a few days now and finally started moving off this plateau I've been on for a few YEARS, even while eating MWLP and reducing starches to almost nothing.

Another thing I've been doing is making soups, lots and lots of soups. It started with some of Mary McDougall's found on the McDougall Made Easy and McDougall Made Irresistible DVD's and now I have a whole new slew of recipes to try.

Today I decided to dust off my pressure cooker and make one that's new to me,
Susan V's Curried Split Pea Soup with Cauliflower. I ran into a problem as soon as I grabbed my pressure cooker. I last used it over a year ago and had to stop when the silicone ring in the lid became tacky, a sign of deterioration. No problem - it seems they're supposed to be changed yearly and I hadn't done so since I bough the pot about 5 years ago. A quick order to Amazon and within a few weeks I had my new ring.

But I never put it in. It sat on a rocking chair for months while I made meals on the stovetop, oven and slow cooker. I even converted many pressure cooker recipes to stovetop. One day I needed the rocker the ring package was on and moved it, putting it in "a safe place" so when I needed it I would know where it is.

That's the last time I saw it.

I spent over an hour tearing the apartment apart trying to find it. I even had my son in on the chase, and usually he's great at finding things I misplaced, but it eluded even him. So I ordered a new one. At least this time I have Amazon Prime with its 2-day shipping policy so it'll be here Thursday. Good, because I have another pressure cooker meal planned for Friday.

As for that pea soup? It looks and smells delicious! I had a sip after putting in the curry and this is going to be a keeper! I have some whole wheat naan bread in the freezer that I'll defrost and serve a little microsalad before it and here's a complete meal.

I'll be back with more cooking adventures soon. Don't worry - I won't make anyone wait until next VeganMoFo this time.

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