100 Calories of Popcorn and Butter

popcorn kernalsIt turns out, popcorn with butter is my ‘perfect food’ for breaking a 2.5 day calorie-curtailment.  I’m not going to use the word ‘fast’ because I did eat a little each day: carrot juice, broth, and seitan.  Sadly, I made the mistake of guessing how many calories are in popcorn and butter instead of weighing them out.  I ended up eating about 800 calories of popcorn and butter.  Oops!

My conclusion about “fasting” is that while it isn’t particularly difficult, over time it was no more effective at weight loss than a smaller daily caloric reduction.  However, I felt good about the self-control involved.  A small good thing in these troubling times of revolution and natural disaster.

Pat o' ButterWhen I started paying more attention to what I was eating, I began to eat higher quality foods.  The increase in price is offset by the reduction in quantity.  Now I enjoy things like Danish butter.  I vastly prefer the flavor and texture to the more commonly available brands.

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100 Calories of Homemade Seitan

seitan

UPDATE: I made seitan again, correcting the mistakes I made below, as well as adding more broth while mixing. I cooked it in a simple consomme with carrots, onion, ginger, garlic, celery greens, tamari and red wine.  It is divine and the seitan is perfect.

ORIGINAL POST: This was my first attempt at making Seitan.  It was easier than I thought it would be.  I found a simple recipe.  I probably should have read up a bit on it first because I made a couple mistakes, such as pre-heating the simmering water and accidentally letting the simmering water boil.  While this batch is tasty and satisfying, it is a bit too chewy, a likely outcome of the two mistakes.

Seitan, in case you are unfamiliar, is a dumpling made of wheat gluten.  Wheat gluten is what remains after rinsing the starch out of wheat.  You can buy pre-washed wheat in the form of “vital wheat gluten” at the grocery. What is great about seitan is it is very high in protein, low in fat, and versatile in cooking.  It is also quite dense, which is very satisfying.  Density in food is rare when you are vegetarian, so it is a nice break from the usual.

Also, if you can not eat tofu, it is a great substitute.  You can bake and stir-fry it, or you can simply layer it in a sandwich.  I like a seitan sandwich with tomato, avocado, mayo, and swiss.

A 100 Calories Of Quiz

Do you think you know what 100 Calories looks like? You can quiz yourself at this Women’s Day site. The site will show you pairs of images of different snacks and you guess which of the two is 100 calories.

I am a “Master Snacker” at identifying which of the shown portions are 100 Calories.   I missed a few.  I will continue to weigh out 100 Calories for the masses.  I take requests.

100 Calories of Raw Spinach

raw spinach

Yup. There it is.  I am not a big fan of raw spinach, but it is okay cooked with olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice.

100 Calories of Strawberries

strawberries

Delighted to learn that a strawberry has about 5 – 10 calories.  They taste so good – yet are healthy.  This flies in the face of my theory that all of the worldly pleasures are vices.

These are dreadfully out of season, so there is still a bit of guilt attached as they were transported from Mexico: fossil fuel and pesticides included.  Strawberry picking in New England is still a ways off, as it is still winter here.