Crazy for Some Sushi!

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Sunday night has become watch party night for Walking Dead for my foodie friend and I. It’s a much anticipated night throughout the week as we’ve challenged each other to explore foods from different cultures. This past Sunday was Sushi night! Little did my friend know that I have a cheating contraption that makes it oh-so-easy. Used previously, it worked splendidly yet again. And our sushi was delicious. Both last night and today for lunch.

This contraption is about the oddest thing you’ll ever see. It looks like a caulking gun with a plunger on the end. Basically, you open it up, put the rice and your goodies in, then close it and push out the sushi on to your nori paper. Then roll it up and cut it up

. And it eliminates trying to make the perfect little roll by doing the hard work for you. It took a little bit of exploration to find the nori in this little southern town – I actually had to go to Nashville to get it, at Whole Foods no less. Then I got some wasabi paste and pickled ginger at Publix, along with the tuna and swordfish we used. The tuna was expected, the swordfish came from a suggestion from the fish monger there – he said it was commonly picked up by other customers because it was a milder fish with a flavor similar to Mahi Mahi (which I actually like). It was surprisingly delicious.

We did up the fish three ways – raw, with a tiny dribble of sesame oil for a smoky flavor, and with some lemon-garlic powder and sea salt. I think the third one took the cake in flavor. Although they all tasted great. Our other ingredients included carrots, cucumber, avocado, bell pepper and radish. All chopped in to little bitty slivers. It took some knife skills, let me tell you. And rice? Use the rice cooker – not the stainless pot. It burns when you don’t stir it up and you have an electric stove. Thankfully we salvaged a majority of it. And then make sure you mix in that dribble of rice vinegar for the perfect sushi flavor.

I also made a yummy asian slaw to go with this – though we didn’t get that far – I might have forgotten it in the fridge because the sushi anticipation was killing me and we had been munching on the sashimi already… I sent him home with some so that it didn’t go bad in my fridge and I had some with my lunch. I think letting it sit made it even better. It had some of the same ingredients: cucumber and carrot, with the addition of cabbage, bean sprouts and tangy green apple. I then dressed it with lemon juice (to keep the apple from turning brown), and a vinaigrette made with a tiny bit of mayo, agave, sesame oil, rice vinegar and spicy garlic mustard. Yum.

Zombies and sushi… how is that not the perfect combination??? Fish has the same texture as “BRaaIInnnsSSss!!!” And yes I know I’m an odd bird sometimes.

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So the Diet Begins…

The Army says I need to lose some pounds. So lose some pounds is what I’m going to do. The honeymoon is over, and my hunny has agreed to help me out with this by eating “diet food” for dinners. He’s such a good husband. Of course, I’m going to combine my dieting with exercise… though that part is harder for me than the watching my diet part. This diet I’ve done before, and it worked rather well, just took a lot of discipline. It’s only allowing myself 1400 calories a day. No fast food, no soda, very little alcohol unless I have calories left in my diet. Tonight I got to have a beer.

So, since I’ve already invested in a couple diet cookbooks, I decided that I should probably start using them. The first one that I’ve delved into for the past two nights is called Cook Yourself Thin Faster. Last night was porkchops with apples. It was surprisingly tasty. There was a sauce that went with it that was made with the apples, shallots, apple cider vinegar and a couple teaspoons of heavy cream. It was delightfully tasty. We balanced out the tanginess of the vinegar with a simple salad.

Stay tuned for more tasty diet friendly food. And go buy the book for more tasty recipes!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lb loin pork chops, fat fully trimmed, off the bone

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

Cooking Spray, preferably olive oil

1 shallot, peeled and finely chopped

1 apple, peeled, cored, and cut into eighths

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

2 tbsp heavy cream

Directions:

1. Lightly pound the pork with a meat mallet or rolling pin to flatten slightly.

2. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Lightly spray a large saute pan with cooking spray and set over medium high heat.

4. Add the pork to the pan and cook 3-4 minutes. Turn and cook for another 4 minutes, until cooked through. Remove the pork to a plate and keep covered. Saute the shallot and apple until slightly golden. Add the apple cider and cook until the liquid begins to boil. Add the heavy cream and stir. Return the pork to the pan, toss with the sauce, and serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts:

Serves 4. Per Serving: 270 Calories, 9g Total Fat, 591 mg Sodium, 5g Sugar