So, it has taken me awhile, but I have boarded the diet train. My wife has been hitting it hard and doing a super swell job at it, and it was time I joined her.
I have been very supportive, but that only goes so far. Plus, let’s be honest, this guy could stand to lose some pounds.
I can’t be Jared from subway … wait, bad analogy … I can’t be Chris Pratt and go from chubster to heart throb for a few reasons. First and foremost, I have a feeling I have reached a milestone of age when your skin doesn’t bounce back like it used too. I would just be a flailing sail without enough slack, just chirping away at the mast. But most importantly, no one really trusts a skinny chef or thin food columnist.
What does that skinny guy know that I don’t? He obviously doesn’t eat anything but celery sticks and protein shakes. Probably doesn’t even know how to make pizza crust — and to be honest I dont, it’s like my white whale that I will stab in the heart soon, and they will call me Ishmael.
So in my quest for healthy meals, I’m falling back onto old-time classics, if you will. Things I have made in the past that I know are good, and good for you. My biggest obstacles are carbs. I love me some carbs, in any form.
I find that risotto is a nice compromise. While it is truly a royal pain to make over and over, the payoff is sweet. It’s not a low-carb food by any means — a serving is just less than two slices or bread. But throw in some salmon and asparagus and you are rolling. You can’t eat that well and low carb with two slices of bread. Plus it fills you up. Win/win.
This week I made pan-seared ahi tuna with a plain chicken broth based risotto and bacon brussel sprouts.
While this is low carb, my bacon brussel sprouts kind of ruined the party. This is where I could say it’s keto-diet approved and all that bandwagon tomfoolery, but it all comes down to calories in vs. calories out. You will never see those kind of meals from this writer, I promise you that.
Ahi tuna is best enjoyed still flopping, pretty much. If you wanted well done ahi I would save you the money and point you to a can of solid chunk albacore tuna. While it is delicious and it’s impossible to go to the cheap stuff after having that, it’s no ahi. For about $17 from Costco and a drive up to Billings you can grab yourself an ahi tuna steak that’s surprisingly high quality. The key to pan searing anything always comes back to having a quality set of stainless steel pans. I wouldn’t attempt to make ahi on a non stick. It would come out overcooked and a weird, mushy texture.
In any case, if you do have the right equipment, I hope you enjoy the meal as much as we did!
1 Ahi tuna steak
1 pound brussel sprouts, cut in half
½ package bacon, diced
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 small white onion, chopped
1 cup Arborio risotto
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups chicken broth
1. Take the ahi tuna steak out of the ridgerator and salt and pepper both sides. The closer it gets to room temperature the better your sear will be when you cook it.
2. Add halved brussel sprouts and diced bacon into a large non-stick pan and set to medium heat. Cover and stir occasionally. Will be done when bacon is cooked and brussel sprouts have been browned.
3. Saute risotto and chopped onion in olive oil and butter for 3-4 minutes in saute pan.
4. Slowly add chicken broth 1 cup at a time until the liquid has been absorbed, than add more.
5. In a stainless steel frying pan, heat over med-high heat until you can drip oil into the pan and it remains a ball. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pan followed by the tuna steak. Let it sit, undisturbed for 1 minute 30 seconds, flip and repeat on the other side. The inside will be warm but not cooked for rare. If this is too rare for you up the cooking time by 30 seconds for a more medium temperature.