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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Day 6 Birthday Dinner Triumph!

This is my plate from Jim's 68th Birthday Dinner April 26, 2010. I served Jalapeno-Salmon Burgers on whole grain buns (I went topless - bun wise, that is!), Baby Romaine Salad with tomatoes, avocado & Parmesan; Long Grain & Wild Rice Pilaf (from a box-Near East); fresh strawberries and German Chocolate Cake for Dessert. Total cost per plate was $8.05 and I enjoyed 1/2 my salmon burger for lunch today. I had only a bite of the cake, Jim enjoyed about 1/2 a normal slice -- we have quite a bit of that left since neither of us eat sweets very often. (Temptation looms - but I will be strong!) The cake was more for the ceremony than for nutrition.

I was out of town attending meetings most of the day yesterday so I needed to grab something in Park City on my way home that would keep well for the 90-minute drive and I could put together quickly once I arrived home later than normal and more tired than normal. So shopping objective was convenience, freshness, cost, ease of preparation, and presentation. I had 15 minutes to do the shopping!

Why this is a Day 6 Meal:

The centerpiece of this meal is the salmon burger. At 4 ounces/patty each contains 28g Protein and is rich in omega 3 fats - the good fat. I chose to eat mine on the bottom half of the whole grain bun with a spread of Miracle Whip Light. Jim took his burger top-on. I purchased the salmon patties ready-to-cook at Whole foods "Daily Special" for $2.49/pound so each patty was only $2.50. I pan seared them over medium-high heat in a small amount of canola oil from the pantry. Before I started cooking the salmon patties I cooked the rice per package directions. I used Near East brand Long Grain & Wild Rice Mix, serves 3 (1 cup each) at $0.90/serving. As you remember from the Day 6 starches such as rice or pasta can be included as condiments in our Daily Intelligent Eating Plan - That meant about 1-2 Tablespoons for me. Jim, however, took a full serving of about 1 cup cooked rice.

While the salmon cooked I "plated" the salad of greens, tomatoes, avocado and Parmesan cheese and garnished with a few plump fresh strawberries. It took about 8 minutes for the salmon patties to cook (4 minutes per side) and during the last part of cooking I toasted the buns under the broiler. I lined a baking sheet with foil, placed the open buns on the foil and lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Toasting took about 90 seconds.

I want to illustrate here that we can quickly and economically respect our Day 6 goals, even on special occasions.

For this occasion it was my luxury to be able to get help from the grocery store. (We live 40 miles out on the range away from such convenience -this truly is a luxury shopping day for me!!). By taking advantage of the Daily Special salmon patties my main protein was ready-to-cook and delicious at just $2.50/serving. Buying & Cooking 4 servings when we only needed 2 means that I have leftovers for both Jim and I later this week (I already ate my leftovers from last night!) So I've cooked once, we will eat twice. The fresh produce made a easy and nutritionally balanced low-glycemic side dish (salad) and the rice was a convenient and healthy whole grain option for Jim and a nice "condiment" for me. The German chocolate cake was more for show and for Jim than for nutritional need. Understanding this is part of our "Intelligent" Day 6 eating. German chocolate cake is the only sweet Jim has ever expressed a fondness for (ranch kids didn't grow up on sweets), so once a year he gets it. I was right-happy with a taste chased with a fresh strawberry - and that choice allowed me to feel "Triumph" not remorse.

Here is the cost workup on the Birthday Dinner:

The Daily Intelligent Eating Triumphs concept teaches us that every single day we have opportunity to feed our body well. It doesn't have to be expensive or time consuming or stressful. I know you are out there doing this for yourself and your families and it makes me so proud! So please, join the fun and share how you are making every day Day 6!

Day 6: Beyond the 5 Day Pouch Test

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