Tuesday, August 21, 2007

For August - it Sure is Chili . . .

Perhaps it is my recent weight loss, maybe it is just that it is dreary and rainy out, maybe that it is only 60-some degrees, perhaps it is all of the above - or MAYBE it is just that I looooooooooooove a heaping cup of the spicy stuff but - today just felt like a Chili-for-lunch kind of day for me!

Long a fan of the soup-genre, I have rarely met a bowl or cup of the stuff that I didn't like. I think it started as a kid with tomato soup and grilled cheese followed by Chicken Noodle and Saltines and then, later, after several years of all sorts of homemade, canned, store bought and restaurant prepped soups - I had a brief but fulfilling love affair with the cream based creations at Au Bon Pain during my days in DC (I still think of you fondly, Corn Chowder!). I must say though - the one spicy spoonful that has always had my number is Chili.

Now - let me be very clear - I currently eat only turkey chili with a reduced fat and lower oil content. I don't put much cheese in it anymore (perhaps a pinch or so - always reduced fat cheese) and I don't eat it with crackers anymore BUT I still eat Chili just about every time I can.

The beauty of Chili, for those about to have, who have just had or who years ago had surgery is that you can eat it in almost any stage of the surgery diet. You can puree it, you can eat it during your soft solids and you can certainly whoop it up in the solid and latter stages of the diet too.

I suggest eating about 1/2 cup of Chili in a sitting. You'll get about 2 - 3 grams of meat and beans (up to 25 grams of protein) and you don't take on more than 225 calories or so for the chili and the sprinkle of cheese so it is well within your daily calorie limits.

Stew Leonard's, for those who have one near by has an EXCELLENT low-fat chili, for those - like me - who don't have the time or enthusiasm to make their own!

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