Cutting carbs

February 23, 2016

"We don't NEED no STEENKIN' bread!"

“We don’t NEED no STEENKIN’ bread!”

I have mentioned to y’all this eating plan I’m currently on.  (The wagon of which I veritably leapt off last night, when I pigged out on Easter candy, but sometimes one must just beg forgiveness, and not permission.)

While I’m not consciously counting carbs, I do realize that to get in the important nutrients I need every day, while not blowing my calorie budget out of the water, carbs have to be consumed judiciously. Which is to say, eliminated or cut down when possible. So I’ve been working on that.

One place I can almost ALWAYS cut down on carbs is the bread in a sandwich. I’m not a huge sandwich eater, in large part because I don’t really care for eating that much bread. I’d much prefer to have all the sandwich ingredients wrapped up in a tortilla, or tossed together in a salad. (Actually, I’m thinking of trying my hand at crepes, and seeing how they work as sandwich wrappers.)

Sometimes, of course, a couple of slices of toasted or grilled bread are integral to a sandwich — see the Cubano, or the BLT, or even the pimiento cheese with bacon and tomato. But in many cases, the bread can simply be omitted, with sliced cheese or leaf lettuce substituting.

Consider the Reuben. I picked up the stuff for Reubens at the grocery t’other day, mostly because I’d made a loaf of rye bread and had a houseguest whom I knew was fond of them. The rye being forgettable, I used the remainder of the meat and cheese to make breadless Reubens the next two days.

To-wit: Take a two slices of Swiss cheese (I use Boars Head for both the cheese and the meat; it’s pricy, but it’s worth it.) and cut or tear it them in half. You could leave them whole, but this is for ease of one-handed handling here. Fold up a slice or two of corned beef to the same size as the half-cheese slice (you want about three, four thicknesses), and put on top of the cheese.

Take some kraut. I use Claussen’s, from the refrigerated section. Just better stuff. Hoping to make some kraut this summer, but meanwhile, Claussen’s. Put the kraut on a couple of thicknesses of paper towels and pat the moisture out of it; you may need to change towels a time or two. Put that on top of the corned beef. Squirt a drizzle of Russian or Thousand Island dressing atop the kraut; top with another layer of corned beef and the other half of the cheese slice.

With a bowl of vegetable soup, as pictured above, this will get you a fine lunch for less than 500 calories.

The encased dressing means it gets into the nooks and crannies of the kraut and the corned beef, and doesn’t drip out the sides onto your shirt, if you haven’t gotten overenthusiastic, and you still get the characteristic taste. I miss the rye, a little, but I don’t miss the calories.

You can do the same thing with ham, turkey, roast beef, pastrami — any sliceable meat, really, and any sliceable cheese, that you don’t care about grilling. Just remember to build it with cheese on the outside, meat next, and condiments in the middle. And remember to blot condiments like pickles or kraut a bit dry before you add them, as there’s no bread to soak up the juice.

Thinking I may go for some pastrami and provolone next. Or smoked turkey and Muenster. You ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em want to come over for lunch?



3 Responses to “Cutting carbs”

  1. rachyt720 Says:

    Great idea. I am not a huge fan of deli meats unless it’s in a sandwich but I am also on a low carb lifestyle… However, this is something I can totally do for my Husband. Take a peek at my low carb recipes… you may like them/get ideas. Please let me know your thoughts!

    Chicken and cauliflower casserole:

    Shrimp zoodle scampi:

  2. kayatthekeyboard Says:

    Thanks! I did zoodles back in the summer; should get the spiralizer back out!

  3. rachyt720 Says:

    go get it girl!

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