My top-line review is Boltwood is good, with touches of great but with some work to be done. I, as always, would like to see more low-salt and low-fat options, plus more creative flavoring in what is available in the low-salt, low-fat world.
My wife and I recently tried a new restaurant in our suburb of Evanston that has been getting a lot of positive buzz because its owner is a well-known local restaurateur. My top-line review is Boltwood is good, with touches of great but with some work to be done. I, as always, would like to see more low-salt and low-fat options, plus more creative flavoring in what is available.
But I did have some wonderful surprises there, especially when I allowed myself to splurge on a side dish I knew would be salty by its very nature (it includes anchovies).
Including hummus and tahini sauce along with Jerusalem salad in the pita, the entire meal has only 10 grams of fat, 282 mgs of sodium and 2 grams of sugar. That is really amazing when you consider that a piece of traditional pita bread alone has about 300 mgs of sodium in it.
I’ve ranted here before about fast food and other restaurants these days that tout selling “healthy” food when in fact their offerings are still loaded with salt, fat and sugar. Some, like the Protein Bar, in Chicago are growing rapidly with these false health claims, basically pushing salt on unsuspecting patrons.
So it’s nice to be able to write about one new chain in our area, the Naf Naf Grill, that actually has new, tasty variations on familiar foods using low-salt and low-fat recipes. A Naf Naf lunch once a week has become a special treat for me. The menu has Midwestern-inspired offerings, but Naf Naf makes its own low-salt pita bread and uses extremely lean beef and chicken for its pita sandwiches while keeping them tasty and filling!
Serves 1, multiply everything x1 to make more except the lime juice, multiply that by 1/2
Cooking time 30 minutes including prep
10 king prawns, shelled (if you’re lazy you can use pre-cooked)
1/3 cup fresh pineapple, cubed
1/2 red chilli, seeds removed, finely sliced
3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons fresh corriander, chopped
1 small carrot, shaved into ribbons
1 cup sweet heart cabbage, sliced
1/2 cup brocolli, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh ginger root, grated
1/4 cup lime juice, fresh or bottled
2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
1/4 cup reduced salt soy sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Low calorie cooking spray
Pre-cook the prawns by blanching in boiling water until white all the way through, take off heat and drain.
Prepare a sauce with the soy sauce, sweet chilli and lime juice – set aside for later.
Bold flavors are the thing in my house. I cook salmon as often as possible, therefore I am always trying new ideas for flavoring it. I came a cross a recipe for pastrami rub for a meat, and thought why not tweak it a bit for salmon. Typically bold flavors go well with fatty fish like salmon, and this was no exception. The salmon had a nice flavorful spice crust.
1 salmon filet
For the rub: Mix well together
1 1/2 tbs crushed black peppercorn
1 1/2 tbs ground coriander seeds
2 tbs brown sugar
dash of salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp ground mustard
Rub both sides of the salmon with the seasoning mix. Place in an oven dish. Bake in 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish.
A good list of some low-fat protein options. I’ve found a 96% lean ground beef as well.
Eating an effective amount of protein while staying within your allocated carbohydrates and fat for the day is extremely tricky. My best advice is to plan your meals around a high protein source and add carbs once your protein source is set. The following are the best high protein-low carb/low fat protein sources:
Hamburger patty 95% lean ground beef, 6oz = 36 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs, and 8 grams of fat
Chicken breast 6oz = 54 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs, 6 grams of fat
Tilapia 6oz = 42 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs, 6 grams of fat
Salmon 3oz = 19 grams of protein, 0 rams of carbs, 10 grams of fat
Cod 6oz = 30 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs, 6 grams od fat
Swordfish has 11.7 grams of fat per eight ounces along with 260 mgs of sodium and 57.6 grams of protein.
I’ve been eating a lot more fish since my angioplasty in 2012. Salmon is my favorite and, so far, still considered healthy, although some disparage farm-raised salmon, which most salmon sold in the U.S. is.
Another meaty, fleshy fish that can remind me of my steak-eating days is swordfish. Trader Joe’s sells it frozen for $8.99 a pound, so about $4.50 a portion if you eat half a pound at a sitting as I do.