Thursday, April 22, 2010

Today's Lunch

Today's lunch is one that I tend to eat when I want to allow for more flexibility in later meals. It's the type of thing I eat when I want to have a bigger dinner (burrito, pizza, etc.). Usually, I have some sort of soup with this, but I didn't have any on hand and wasn't in the mood to take the time to make some before lunch. On the plus side, soup has more calories than broccoli and strawberries, which I had today. The broccoli was a leftover from dinner. I prepare the broccoli with freshly squeezed lemon juice and just the tiniest amount of reduced calorie fat spread. If you're a bigger eater than me, a second egg should do the trick, and add relatively little to the total calorie count of the meal.

Most people think that you poach eggs to avoid the fat from frying them, but the truth is that very little fat sticks to fried eggs. Unless you're lovingly bathing the egg in butter, you're unlikely to add many calories through frying. The main reason to choose poaching rather than frying is that the result has a different texture and you have much better control over the yolk's thickness and liquidity. The white is also softer and less prone to be rubbery if you properly poach the egg.

To poach an egg effectively, you can follow these steps:
  1. Fill a small pan (I use a skillet as its easier to handle a shallow pan) with water and heat until bubbles start to form (a pre-boiling stage). Do not allow the water to actually boil or your egg will be rubbery.
  2. Break your egg into a small, shallow bowl (this is so you can handle placing it into the water more precisely).
  3. Add about 1 tbsp. vinegar to the water (this helps the white coagulate and stay together). Stir the vinegar around a bit.
  4. Set a timer or note the time on the clock and gently add your egg into the water. I usually try to get the yolk to fall in first and pour the white on top of that. I also use an egg ring which helps keep it together. You can use a tuna can, cookie cutter, or other metal form or simply not worry about the shape.
  5. Allow the egg to simmer in the near-boiling water (it's okay if it starts to boil after the egg has been put in the water). Depending on how cooked you want it to be, poach for 3-6 minutes. 
  6. Drain the egg on a paper towel, add salt and pepper as desired.
medium poached egg = 63 calories
broccoli = 22 calories
strawberries = 20 calories
whole wheat toast = 80 calories
margarine = 35 calories
total calories: 220 calories

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