Alli Cooks: A Simple Saturday Dinner

Beet chips before baking

Hi everyone – HG here (aka Alli Lo)  Nice to “meet” all of Logan’s readers! The husband has graciously allowed me to use his blog in order to chronicle my newest adventure: cooking!

My kitchen has finally become more than just that room where I make PB&J sandwiches. Seriously, though I do plan to actually use my stove on a more regular basis primarily due to:

  1. my unsatisfactory cholesterol levels;
  2. the hope that I can alleviate the negative physiological effects of work stress by consuming healthier (ed: see note below) food rather than copious amounts of pinot noir; and
  3. a recommendation by my brother-in-law to check out Eat to Live for the diet’s overall health benefits. Logan is the principle cook in the house, but I thought it would be fun to document some of my meals.

ETL recommends a diet consisting primarily of fruits, vegetables, beans, and legumes, limited nuts and wheat, and very little to no animal products and processed foods. I try to follow this diet as much as possible during the week; however, I generally incorporate lean meats and eggs into my weekend meals to accommodate Logan as well as my carnivore tendencies.

Also, you’d have to pry café con leche and Fage yogurt out of my cold dead hands so I allow myself 1-2 servings of dairy each week.

I’m by no means a foodie and am still mastering the basics so my meals generally involve simple preparation of whole foods.

On to the first entry!

First dinner

Saturday Dinner

  • Chicken Breast with Mushrooms, Shallots, and Tomatoes
  • Lentil Soup
  • Baked Beet Chips
  • Salad of Romaine Lettuce, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, and Kalamata Olives

The chicken breast was actually a leftover from dinner out on Friday. I sauteed mushrooms, shallots, and tomatoes with a touch of olive oil, garlic, oregano, and basil to top the chicken. Refreshing the doggy bag with fresh ingredients was a great time-saver as Saturday was too nice a day to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.

The beet chips and lentil soup are from my new “Power Foods” cookbook. For the soup, just combine 1.5 cups green lentils, 4 carrots sliced 1/2-inch thick, 2 cloves minced garlic, 1 tsp. salt, and 6 cups water in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, and then reduce heat and let simmer for 45 minutes. Before serving, squeeze in a bit of lemon juice.

This soup is a piece of cake (oh cake…I love cake…I miss cake…chocolate cake…coconut cake…cake frosting…okay, I’m back. On a great note the garcinia cambogia results are truly remarkable, I can truly feel better, like my skin is present).

For a one-dish meal the next day, you can pour the leftover lentil mixture over a protein pasta like Barilla Plus.


editorial  note:
I may be the only person on the planet that cares but technically, food’s healthful for you; if food is healthy for you, that means it does push-up and sprints just to be healthy for you.

On an unrelated point, still don’t understand why I had no friends in high school.

location: in bed, watching Dancing with the Stars
mood: shut it, Logan
music: but I won’t stop and falter

16 replies on “Alli Cooks: A Simple Saturday Dinner”

Nice to meet you Alli! I may just order "Eat to Live", I am struggling (yes, struggling) to make healthier choices as well. I am such a "gloutonne", though in France that's not the nicest word (ditto for in the US: glutton), so I often put the classier word "gourmande" in its place. It's so funny this post came out just now, as I've been thinking about how I need to eat more lentils (I notice they eat a lot more lentils and mackerel in France — I'm giving out all of their secrets!) and I find your soup recipe to be a good start! The beet chips look fantastic — I will try to find the recipe. Brilliant idea!

Since you're a New Yorker you probably know about Kimchi .. another good one (listed on the list of the top 5 healthiest foods)! I make my own at home.

Speaking of cake (what?! where??!), I need to figure out how to make "healthy desserts". Rice cakes at 9'o'clock just don't do it for me…

I hope you post again soon. 🙂

Hi grenobloise: Let me know if you make the lentils! I've actually never had kimchi. Logan has a tendency of fermenting foods in various places throughout the house so I think he just got his next idea =).

I am on the hunt for healthy desserts as well. Most of the desserts in the Power Foods cookbook are fruit-based. I actually made baked peaches a few weeks ago. It was basically just peaches basted in a butter, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon mixture and popped in the oven for 30 minutes. It was good; ice cream would of course make it better. But, I'm a chocoholic so I never feel I'm eating dessert unless it involves 70% cacao. I'll have to check out the food blogs for some ideas.

Thanks for commenting!

Hey…how'd the beet chips turn out?
And if awesome would be a descriptor…can you provide a recipe?

I went on a japanese style diet two years ago (that sounds very similar, i.e, not much meat, fish and soy protein, little to no carb other than brown right, and no dairy) and lost quite a bit of weight that stayed off for quite sometime and got "healthier" but I have fallen off that wagon recently.

Do the recipes/foods recommended in that book make it easier to stay on the diet for a prolonged period? Does that "craving" reprogramming work?
Thanks for the post!

Everything looked delicious! Definitely going to have to try the beet chips. I usually opt for sweet potatoes since the hubby doesn't like the aubergine root vegetable….which just means more for me!!

Can't wait for your next post from the kitchen! I'm sure whatever it is, it will be delicious and healthful. 😉

Thanks! I think I will actually try sweet potatoes or kale next time.

Thanks for the cooking inspiration. I plan to try one of your recipes soon =)

Hi Alana: I thought the beet chips were pretty good. The key, I think, is to slice the beets paper thin to ensure crispiness.

Here is the beet chip recipe:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees
Peel two beets and slice as thinly as possible with a mandolin (I wore an apron and latex gloves)
Toss the beet slices in 1 tsp of olive oil
Place the beet slices on sheet pans lined with parchment paper (I used aluminum foil)
Sprinkle with salt
Bake for 25-30 minutes until crispy
Let stand for 10 minutes to cool

I sprinkled my finished chips with a parmesan herb spice blend for a little something extra.

From what I've read, the recipes in ETL are only okay. For me, I just use the guidance of what foods to eat and what foods to avoid and then find recipes in my Power Foods cookbook or on cooking blogs that work within the confines of the diet. ETL does recommend at least four servings of fruit per day, which is great for me. I find myself craving bananas and strawberries in the morning when I used to look forward to a big muffin.

Thanks for commenting!

Hi Alli! I also read ETL based on Aki’s advice…good book but I feel the same about Fage and chocolate! Let me know if you find some good dessert recipes so I can make it work. I heard from a vegan friend recently that dark chocolate doesn’t have dairy….hmmmm maybe that’s a start. Good to see you on here HG 🙂

I'll keep you posted on any healthy dessert recipes!

Trader Joe's makes a really good dark chocolate bar with toffee, pecans, and walnuts. When I absolutely cannot go on without chocolate, I'll have a square…or two =)

Below is the title of your most recent post. I think you can figure out where I'm going with this.

Logan Cooks: Sets off smoke alarms / Working out makes your smarter

YES! EAT TO LIVE! i'm so excited (but scared. . .because of the no drinking thing) to start it. keep updating us with recipes (if logan will allow), because i'm such a shite cook, i need all the inspiration/help i can get.

I sort of miss the days when I drank to live..haha. I'm digging the blogging and have already planned out the next two weeks of meals so hopefully he'll let me continue!!

So nice to finally get to 'meet' you Alli! The beet chips are a great idea. I will have to try those soon!

I love kale chips and find that they're pretty simple to make. The only issue I find with them is that they tend to burn easily (as indicated by Logan) and they never come out looking like the manufactured kind!. I haven't tested it out yet, but maybe if you set the oven really low (maybe around 150) and let them bake for a while, you'll get a better sized chip.

Anyway, can't wait to read more of your posts.

Hi Elle, thanks for the kale chip advice! I'm tempted to buy them at the store, but I figure it's better to make them at home if we can do so without burning the house down.

Thanks for commenting! I look forward to posting again soon.

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