Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Take THAT, taste buds!

One of my favorite comfort foods is rice topped with chili and cheese. Mmmmm!

One slight problem: It's basically a massive pile of carbs and fat!!! These two things are the bane of the existence of someone who struggles with high cholesterol and high blood glucose. /sad. Imagine my delight when I discovered a much more healthful version of this treat!

I came across a webpage yesterday that showed all sorts of healthful substitutes for non-so-healthful foods. One thing they suggested was substituting food-processed cauliflower for rice. I decided to try it out.

I prepared the cauliflower by cutting it into food-processor-friendly chunks, then pulsing it until the pieces looked rice-sized. I then cooked it in the microwave for 3 minutes (don't add water!.

Next, it was time for the chili. Alas! My beloved canned chili is LOADED with carbs and fat! I decided to experiment...

I picked up a chili seasoning packet from the store, and a small can of tomato sauce with which to mix it. I made the mix as directed, omitting the ground beef and beans.

I also decided to try mozzarella cheese instead of cheddar, just to see how many calories I could shave off.

You know what? It tastes pretty damned good!!! I mean, I can definitely tell I'm not eating the usual rice, chili, and cheese. However, it retains most of the "yummy" factor while cutting out a HUGE portion of the bad stuff:

1 serving of normal Rice, Chili, and Cheese: 485 calories, 79g ECC (effective carbs), 16g fat

1 serving of the healthful alternative: 122 calories, 8g ECC, 4g fat

(Effective Carbs means subtracting the amount of fiber from the total carbs).

Next time I'm going to try some fat-free cheddar cheese on it to see how it tastes.

One more healthy-yet-seemingly-decadent recipe to add to the arsenal.

Have a great day!