Category Archives: Food

A Little Coffee With Your Creamer?

Now, I will admit that I have a thing for coffee. I’ve been known to hit Starbucks when the mood strikes, and indie places when I feel guilty enough. After all, I am the mocha monster.

But there’s one problem. If you haven’t noticed, most brewed coffee drinks, the mocha frappe latte whipped cream extravaganzas are caloric nightmares.

Exhibit A: The basic mocha, which I’m sure I’ve indulged a good many times on throughout the last couple of years, is approximately 200 calories.
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Exhibit B: A tall (12oz) white chocolate mocha

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This baby’s about 320 calories. I think I’m going to cry now.

Now what’s a girl to do? As of late, I tend to go for non-fat and soy, and a complete eradication of whipped cream and syrup from the cup. Notching down my cup size, I can usually convince myself to go for a tall or a short drink, and at some places I’ve frequented, I can whittle down to an 8oz. Which, six months ago, would have seemed criminal but six months ago I couldn’t fit into any size smaller than an XL so I’ll live with it.

At home, where I’ve got a coffee machine and coffee that doesn’t cost four dollars a cup (though if my dad ever sprang for civet coffee, I’d change my tune and potentially think about switching permanently to tea), I can be a pretty frequent coffee drinker. For one, I’m practically a zombie without the first morning cup. (As is most of the country, of course.) Forget about Dawn of the Dead. You wake me up before eight in the morning and you have bigger problems than a horde of zombies mobbing (or is that hording?) urban centers.

So I pour myself a cup of Joe. But what about the creamer you ask?

Well, before I started losing weight, I would basically pour the creamer into my cup until the coffee within was the same color as chalk. Which meant I ended up with what had to be fifty grams of sugar but at eight/nine in the morning, I figured I needed the sugar. This had the benefit of allowing me to drink even the crappiest cup of coffee. Enough creame and you can swallow it down, albeit ending up with an overly saccharine drink that has the vague after-taste of crappy coffee.

Somehow, someway, I was eventually able to whittle my creamer craving down enough so that I could drink my coffee with exactly one tablespoon of creamer (35 calories in the brand we buy!), all carefully rationed out with the same care as a bomb maker working in a sewer. Sure, if the coffee’s horrible or overly strong then it’s basically undrinkable but then why drink it if it’s that bad? I can drink it black on occasion, if it’s an especially good blend. Though most mornings you’ll find me in the kitchen, rationing out my creamer while flipping around scrambled eggs for my sisters (and egg whites for me).

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to nurse a craving for a skinny vanilla latte.

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Of Carbs and Culinary

If you know me well enough, you know that there’s one room in the house that about a good thirty to forty percent of the time I spend at home is spent in this room alone.
Stereotypes aside, that room is the kitchen.
Now I consider myself a ‘good girl’ in that most of that time spent doesn’t insist of shoveling food in my face. I’m usually cooking, sometimes cleaning, or am typing away at my laptop at the table, pretending to be productive.
Now I’m losing weight. And you’d think that as a cook that “Oh, well it’s fine. Millions of options. You can do lowfat cooking. Lookit Curtis Stone!”
Which I do. Yay me.
With one problem. I love to bake.
And I mean

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Love to bake.
You know what my brother got me for Christmas?
The Professional Pastry Chef by Bo Friedberg. My (new) Bible. This.
I work with yeast, with scratch ingredients. I can whip up French breakfast puffs in five minutes. To use Bisquick or a frozen pie crust is a sin equal to punching kittens or New Coke.
And it’s never low fat blueberry muffins or vegan brownies. No. It’s all virginal, carby wonders of caloric baked nirvana.
I won’t lie. I’m good at it. Considering it for a career. But trying to lose weight…
Now I have a few limits when it comes to baking. I don’t fry anything nor will it contain anything more than half a pound of non-fruit filling. Nor will it be involve chocolate or cocoa powder unless it’s just part of the garnish.
And I don’t personally eat a full serving if it’s over 200 calories and I haven’t worked out beforehand. Just how it is.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to take a walk. My house smells like bread and I’m dangerously close to stabbing at that fresh Country loaf I’ve got cooling.