Friday, March 22, 2019
One of my favourite Sparkers (POOKIE) usually has a cooking challenge for herself and I think that I would like to borrow the idea. My husband had a gout attack last October, and I think that it was largely because I was focusing on a high protein (animal)/ low carb diet. So I am struggling to learn to cook some healthy carbs for him while keeping my own carb count low.
To help me in my struggle and to help to get meal planning on track I am going to challenge myself to make one Japanese dish and one curry dish each week. If one of these is a vegetarian dish then fine, if not I will also need to make one vegetarian dish each week.
I do have several Indian cookbooks. Maybe seven or eight, and they are good. The only difficulty is that they are not very Sparky. When I entered the lamb korma recipe into the Spark recipe calculator it was a whooping 901 calories per serving. The lamb korma did not get made. So clearly, I'm going to have to challenge myself to make healthier, lower calorie curries. Also, although I do have a couple of lovely, organic curry powders I would like to make my own spice mixtures for the curry. So there's a challenge right there, because soy doesn't agree with hubby so that knocks a lot of dishes out of the ball park right away.
For the Japanese cooking, I'm not gonna lie it's gonna be a challenge. It has been many years since my Japanese cooking days and they were at the cottage and in Toronto where I had easy access to a Japanese market. My father's girlfriend was Japanese and she was the one who taught me to cook when I was in high school. My first ever experience in cooking was walking into her cottage to introduce myself and being handed a very large pair of Japanese cooking chopsticks and told not to let the bacon burn while she grabbed more firewood. The bacon burned. Luckily, hubby loves Japanese food and everyone loved Koo.
However, my Japanese cookbooks are very old and very traditional with English on one side, Japanese on the other and a list of ingredients that are hard to find in Ottawa today. Turns out Japanese burdock is different than ours and you can't substitute.
So my daughter tells me that there are two Japanese markets in Ottawa (well, apparently one is Korean but carries a lot of products). Also I ordered two, very pricey, Japanese cookbooks off Amazon that reportedly have Western substitutions for hard to get ingredients. Hence the Japanese part of the challenge.
Of course I also hope to lose weight. The last time I had a Japanese friend to dinner, she looked at me in horror and said that it would be better for me to eat with one chopstick for a very long time and not to stab anything. Let's face it, Japanese portions are not huge and this will be good for hubby and I.
Lastly, I will only be posting new recipes on the challenge, not any of our favourites.
So, let the challenge begin!!!