Food and Weight: An Ongoing Journey

It Was a Food-Filled Weekend

Posted on: November 13, 2012

I will post about power foods on Wednesday, but I want to get this one down before I forget details.

Went to meeting Friday, back on program, and took the hit of 2.6 lbs. I had been expecting it, so not a big deal. After meeting, my friend C & I walked over to Memo Shish Kebab, our favorite lunch place — me with a backpack weighing about 15 lbs.  Instead of my usual falafel (my big weekly treat) I had a chicken kebab in pita, with a ton of veggies in it.

Then I shouldered the backpack from Hell, and walked the block up to the express bus stop, so I could head into Manhattan, where I was staying overnight with N, a friend who was in the city to try out for the program Master Chef.  Since I got in before she did, I settled at the Starbucks across the street from her hotel with a grande, skinny Cinnamon Dolce latte — my first Starbucks since I got out of the hospital in June.  After N arrived, we headed up to her room to change clothes, then headed down to the School of Visual Arts Cinema on 23rd Street, between 8th & 9th Avenues, to catch the premiere of the Andy Summers’ film, Can’t Stand Losing You.  N and her friends had bought a bunch of tickets, and since some folks didn’t show, I was able to get one of the tickets from the group, which worked out nicely.  The film was great fun, and if you get a chance to see it, you probably should.  It’s a great, behind-the-scenes look at the Police.

After the movie, N, her friends C & J, and I headed across the street to Asuka Sushi for a late dinner.  The food was plentiful, and yummy, you had the option to have your sushi with brown rice instead of white, and there was something that I have not seen at any other sushi restaurant in NYC:  A salad bar, with some of the freshest salad ingredients I’ve seen.  I had salad, sashimi, and kani (crab) salad, and tasted some Age Tofu, and a bit of the Dancing Salmon roll that N ordered.  (Sadly, I didn’t think to photograph any of the food at Asuka, but I do heartily recommend it.) J then drove N & I back to the hotel, where we crashed fairly early, knowing that N would have to be up early to work on her food.

Sure enough, I woke up Saturday to wonderful smells coming from the suite’s kitchenette; N was making a pork roast, stuffed with pine nuts and herbs.  This was, essentially her backup dish, since she had prepared half of it the day before at home.  She had me taste the earlier dish, and when I said it was delicious (it really was), she decided to use the two perfect slices she had packaged and brought with her.  Her plan was to serve it over some pureed carnival squash, with a side of frisee salad that had been tossed in a shallot vinaigrette, and garnished with crumbled bacon & candied black walnuts.  The dressing and the squash were also delicious, by the way.  (All of the pork  products she used were from a pig raised by her mother, thereby supporting both local farming and head to tail usage of a butchered animal.)  N packed her supplies, and I got dressed; we checked out of the room, and left our bags with the concierge, and went to stand on line. We did that for about an hour, then we were marched about halfway up the block, handed signs, and instructed to march past the host, Joe Bastianich, waving our signs and chanting “Master Chef!  Master Chef!”  It took them three tries to get the shot they wanted.  Then we had to form a mob around Mr. Bastianich.

Nicole and her Nutter Green sign

We were then instructed to go back to the same places we had on the line before, where N’s friend C joined us.  They took in the first batch of applicants (we were two behind the cut-off point), so we were the second group at the head of the line.  Mr. Bastianich came out and briefly walked the line — talking to each contestant and ignoring the rest of us.  Eventually, they started taking in people from the second group — but only the actual applicants.  The friends and relatives were instructed to wait in the hotel lobby.  So C & I found chairs and sat and chatted while we waited for N to come back down. We watched most of the group come back and leave, so we figured that they had liked what N had prepared.  Eventually she returned, with news that she had made the first cut, and then did the interview, but was not among the three chosen on the spot.  They did inform her that she might get a call in the next few weeks, so I am still hoping I will get to see her participate.

By the time N returned, we were all hungry, so we headed to PizzArte, on West 55th Street.  This time I remembered to use my camera:

We also shared their Toto Pizza, which was topped with mozzarella, basil, cherry tomatoes, and roasted veggies.  The food was very good, and since the restaurant is also a gallery, there were some lovely artworks on the wall.  One thing I found particularly impressive was the lentil soup — instead of the thick sludge that most Americans think of as lentil soup, this was a light vegetable broth, with lentils in it and chopped kale sprinkled on top (and about six croutons).

After that, we parted ways — N & C to Penn Station, and me to the express bus stop at 54th Street and Fifth Avenue.  I was very lucky — the express bus came in about 15 minutes.  When I got home, I found the roomie had spent the morning making meat loaf — to be reheated for dinner, since she had no idea when I would be getting home.  I took a nap, and then we had the meatloaf with sides of beets, mixed veggies, and microwaved potatoes.  The meat loaf was particularly good — held together properly when cut, and was still nice and moist.

Sunday was pretty quiet — my cold was being particularly trying, so I slept a lot, but we had an outstanding simple dinner of broiled pork chops, garlic cauliflower, and a hasselback potato each.  Dessert was my version of Hungry Girl’s Hot Apple Pie in a Mug.

The best thing is that I was able to do all of this and still have 38 of my 49 weekly points left over for the rest of the week.  Then again, one of the best things about Weight Watchers is that you can have a special weekend every so often without screwing up your plan.

(Note:  all pictures in this post are the property of Deborah J. Wunder [otherdeb], and use is subject to Creative Commons.)


2 Responses to "It Was a Food-Filled Weekend"

Ohhh! reading this made me hungry! I just wanted to speak up in defense of the ‘sludge’ that you disparaged as lentil soup. Personally, I love a thick porridge made of lentils, beans or peas. It’s a comfort food for me and can substitute for the creamy texture of more calorie dense fats. Broth soups are wonderful, but thick soups have their fans, also.

Oh, yes, thick soups definitely have their place, and I love a nice, thick lentil soup, myself. They are definitely a major comfort food. And don’t get me started on how yummy Marc Glasser’s Curried Chicken Red Bean Soup (a variant on Tom Byro’s version) is, and that is almost a solid rather than a soup! Or my mom’s split pea soup with beef instead of ham! But, being on WW, this was a very pleasant surprise, and allowed me to have a yummy, warm soup on a very cold day (well, the day was supposed to be in the 60s, but was in the 40s, so I was under-dressed [having packed the morning before]). It also got me to think about an old favorite in a new way, which is a Very Good Thing.

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