One of the enjoyable things about starting any kind of eating routine, be it moving to a different country, health necessitated or being on a structured regime, such as this; is the challenge of adapting my 'Old Recipes' to my current way of eating. Well, I find it fun. Yes, I should probably get out more, but anyway...
The following is my adaptation of one of my favourite dishes, Cioppino, which can be loosely described as a San Francisco-style Bouillabaisse. I always use an adaptation of an old Gourmet magazine recipe, but that uses much too much olive oil, so, I used an adaptation of one I found on The Food Network by chef Giada De Laurentiis. Also, just so you know, the above picture isn't mine, but one that most closely resembles what my Cioppino looks like. By the time I realised, last night, I should take a photo... it was mostly polished off. You don't want to look at dirty dishes or the remaining Tablespoon of my Cioppino!.
In this recipe adaptation, I mainly just removed the oil, using instead vegetable stock for 'sautéeing' the vegetables and I replaced the clams, mussels and shellfish with frozen seafood cocktail mix. I did this because: it's what I had and because I need to cook something that won't break the bank. When I'm trying to impress, I go all out with a variety of fresh fish and fresh shellfish. However, please do feel free to add in fresh shellfish, mussels and clams, especially if you'd like the 'Wow' factor of the shells. Me? I didn't want to fiddle with shells and peeling prawns heads and carapaces from their delectable bodies, and frankly, I never do want that messy fuss, even in a restaurant; I just want to eat!
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis and adapted for The Dukan Diet Cruise Phase Veg+Protein day by Kitty
Prep Time: 30 min - Cook Time: 1 hr 0 min
Serves: 6 servings
* 250 ml / 8 ounces / 1 cup reduced fat vegetable stock
* 1 large fennel bulb, thinly sliced
* 1 onion, chopped
* 3 large shallots, chopped
* 2 teaspoons sea salt
* 4-8 large garlic cloves, finely chopped (You decide on amount, we happen to love garlic!)
* 3/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
* 4 Tablespoons / 2 ounces / 1/4 cup tomato paste
* 850 g / 28-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
* 350 ml / 12 ounces dry white wine (optional)
* 1 1/4 litre / 40 ounces / 5 cups fish stock (I use Fumet de Poisson + hot water)
* 1 bay leaf
* 500 g / 1 pound bag frozen seafood cocktail mix (avoid the ones with Surimi, mine had prawns/shrimp, mussels and squid)
* 250g / 1/2 pound fresh or frozen prawns/shrimp or another bag of seafood cocktail mix
* 1 kg / 2 pounds assorted firm-fleshed fish fillets such as halibut or salmon, (I used salmon and Panga) cut into small bite-sized pieces
* A handful of finely chopped or shredded fresh basil (optional)
Heat half the stock in a very large pot over medium heat. Add the fennel, onion, shallots, garlic and salt and sauté until the onion is translucent, continuing stirring and adding more stock as needed to keep the vegetables from sticking. Add 3/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes, and stir in the tomato paste. Add tomatoes with their juices, wine (if using,) fish stock and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the flavours blend, about 30 minutes. The fennel and garlic should be tender.
Add the frozen seafood cocktail mix (and prawns/shrimp, if using frozen) to the cooking liquid. Cover and cook, until the liquid begins to simmer. Then add the fish (and prawns/shrimp if fresh) to the pot, simmering gently until the fish and shrimp are just cooked through, while stirring gently, about 5-7 minutes more. Any longer and the squid will go tough. Season the soup, to taste, with more salt and red pepper flakes.
Ladle the soup into bowls, sprinkle each bowl with some basil, if using, and serve. This goes wonderfully with crusty baguette!
(Note: To make this go further, add 500g / 1 pound of well-scrubbed small new potatoes when you add the bay leaf. Obviously this then changes the recipe away from the cruise phase!)
Now I'll discuss my week. It was pretty crap, again. I have been 'cheating' and it showed up on the scales. What have I been cheating with? Glasses of Merlot? Tablets of Chocolat Noir 70%? Or did I flip out and eat an entire Chaussée aux Moines? Nope, I've been having 50g of All-Bran Fibre Plus every morning with Non-Fat milk. Big whoopty-cheat. I stepped on the scales this morning and decided to can that breakfast cereal malarky right away. It's not been as 'efficacious' as hoped and it has completely put this week's results in the crapper. (Or not, if truth be told, *ahem*)
If anything, I probably gained 500g / 1 pound or so.
Ah well, just means I need to put out a bit more effort this week coming up.
I found this site on the internet called Bodyrock.tv that is focussed on the Home Exercise movement. There are lots of short, intense videos that work all areas of your body, perfect for someone who wants to do a bit of exercise now and again through the day, and is stuck at home. I have to find something to do besides walking, I'm now barely managing 20 minutes at a time, and even if I go out twice a day, it's just not enough.
Obviously my former exercise routine of throwing my weight around, jumping to conclusions and pushing my luck is no longer applicable nor effective.
Have a great weekend and a fabulous week!