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Secret Menus at Panera? What is that about?

6 Feb

Just read that Panera has a secret low carb menu that you have to ask to see.  Here is the link to the menu.  Wonder why it is secret?

http://mypanera.panerabread.com/articlestips/article/access-into-paneras-hidden-menu/?ref=tw

POWER MEDITERRANEAN CHICKEN SALAD one of six low carb options now at Panera.

All-natural, Antibiotic-free chicken, baby spinach, romaine, tomatoes, apple-wood smoked bacon, diced eggs, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and extra virgin olive oil.

lunch-2

Quick and easy breakfast

12 Oct

No time for frying pans and all the mess, here is a simple delicious way to prepare eggs.  Now there is no excuse for not having breakfast! Thanks Betsy for sharing this great recipe.

Coat a microwave-safe large coffee mug or custard cup with cooking spray or butter. The eggs will rise so be sure to cover the entire area.  Add two eggs, 2 T cream, salt and pepper. Beat with fork until blended. Cook on full power for 35-40 seconds and stir. Continue cooking unti eggs are set, about 40 seconds longer. (microwave times vary) Top with shredded cheese if desired.

Above is a great quick way to have breakfast, but here is my absolutely favorite way to have breakfast.  Breakfast in bed brought to me by room service. I am not sure which is better breakfast in bed or eating sausages with no guilt whatsoever? A toss up.. 

On the road this week in Arizona

12 Oct

Traveling is always fun and a great way to hear about new low carb recipes from friends I don’t get to see often. Last night Betsy shared a great quick breakfast, which I will post later today. It seems the more people I talk to, the more I hear about converts to the low carb way of life.

Yesterday I had a wonderful salad at a Spa, it was so great to see a menu with Carbs listed next to the choices. I never was much for requiring restaurants to list such things, but must admit now I am a huge fan. I had a roasted beet salad with goat cheese and walnuts on assorted greens. I felt funny taking a picture as I was with a group. But I found this picture on the internet and it looks just like the salad I had.  This salad had only 6 carbs and I was not hungry again for hours. 

Dining out with Friends or so I thought!

5 Oct

Look at what they are eating! Even in my carb heydays, I don’t think I ate desserts like this. Maybe my talking about low carb eating during dinner and how great it was drove them to it?  Maybe I said too much and this is their way of shutting me up? I have to say it looked so good, I was getting weak. But somehow I just have this resolve because I feel so much better not eating like that anymore. Somedays I wonder where is Patty and who is this person I have become? Bon Appetite ladies…I promise to lighten up!

The Windy City

30 Sep

This weekend I am in Chicago. Warm, sunny and 75 degrees just amazing fall weather. Travel and keeping low carb can be a bit of a trial, but I am getting the hang of it. I found a great breakfast spot called the Corner Bakery, sounds crazy for a low carb breakfast but if you can ignore all the muffins, coffee cake and bagels they make wonderful scrambled eggs and bacon. The Anaheim Scrambler with crisp applewood smoked bacon, tomatoes, green onions, and cheddar cheese, topped with avocado was a favorite.  Just ask them to hold the potatoes and toast. Ignore the funny looks and declarations that you will still need to pay for them, and you get a nice filling breakfast. FYI-the cash register automatically deducted the cost of potatoes and toast!

I had a wonderful spinach salad at The Capital Grille, perfect for a late night dinner. Definitely something I plan to recreate when I get home. Tender baby spinach leaves, onions and mushrooms with chopped egg and smoked bacon on top. The warm bacon dressing was wonderful.  I am little worried there was some sugar in that dressing.

To start our meal at The Capital Grille we shared an appetizer that was perfection. For anyone wondering about the benefits of low carb living, check this out. No carbs, eat this with reckless abandon! It is fresh mozzarella wrapped in prosciutto and lightly sautéed. The fresh basil and drizzle of balsamic glaze* the perfect addition.

It came with crostini which we ignored. Easy to do.  I need to try this at home. Great appetizer for dinner parties.

*This is just reduced balsamic vinegar. Simmer balsamic vinegar over gentle heat until reach desired thickness.  Balsamic adds sweetness, so watch the are carbs. Read the label on your balsamic vinegar.  Usually about 5 grams per ounce, use sparingly. A very light drizzle is all that is needed.

Finally I want to share a great lunch find. On Saturday afternoon, we sat outside at The Ralph Lauren Restaurant just off Michigan Avenue. I had the the Baby Arugula Salad with Tomatoes, Cucumber, Parmesan, Pine Nuts tossed with a Champagne Vinaigrette.  It was so reminiscent of our recent trip to Italy! It seemed a steal at under $10.  Just sitting there on a beautiful afternoon people watching was worth more than that! 

One word~Gelato

11 Sep

The Italians know how to do ice cream. Somehow the word gelato does not sound fattening, so it seemed perfectly fine to succumb to all the seductive flavors. It was hot and we walked miles, so gelato was a perfect treat. It is everywhere and everyone is eating it. The choices were amazing and Grom was by far the winner! Located very near the Duomo, there is always a line, but so worth it.  I am quite sure, standing in line, equates to exercise, so it all worked!

I am hoping to find a wonderful sorbet or ice cream without all the sugar that tastes good.  Any recipes to share out there?

My official taste tester. Someone has to do it! 

La cena è pronta or “dinner is ready..”

9 Sep

Grilled chicken and vegetables is wonderful anywhere, but in Milan it was amazing. We had taken the train from Lake Como and arrived in Milan a bit hungry and tired. This was perfect! It looked so pretty and tasted even better. La Scala Opera House was across the street. Amazing…

I think this should be easy to replicate at home. The crust of the chicken had sea salt and crushed pepper. The sear marks of the grill make this such an appealing dish. I tend to overcook and over handle veges when I grill them, this was done on high heat for a very short time. A light touch is needed.

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