Friday, October 27, 2006

Breakfasts

See also Travelling With Type 2

For various reasons, I'm one of the many type 2's for whom breakfast is the hardest meal of the day to get right. The traditional "heart-healthy" breakfast of cereal, milk, juice and toast is a disaster for my blood glucose levels. So, after much experimentation I came up with these ideas.

Breakfasts With Minimal Carbs

1. Egg. The humble egg can be cooked in so many ways: poached, fried (minimal oil in a non-stick pan), normal omelette (beat it lightly while cooking), fluffy omelette (separate, whip the white with a spoonful of water, fold back with filling and yolk), scrambled with a little milk, frittata (sort of a heavier omelette with filling), and baked. Use fillings, cheese, fresh herbs if you can, dried if you can't.

2. Meat. Bacon, Ham, small steak, hamburger patty (watch the fat), chicken, prosciutto, hot dogs and so on. Can be fried, grilled/broiled, chopped after cooking and added to omelettes, frittata or scrambled eggs. For bacon or other fatty meats, drain on absorbent paper before serving.

3. Fish. Smoked, canned or fresh. Can be poached, fried, as a mornay (easy on the thickener), mixed in a stir-fry etc. Same for seafood.

4. Mushrooms. Small ones can be sliced and cooked with onions, herbs , garlic etc and a little oil and a smidgin of flour for a gravy. Large ones can be filled with bolognaise or napoli sauce (or whatever you like), topped with grated cheese and baked in the oven. Also another good omelette filling.

5. Casseroles and stews - beef, lamb, chicken, mince (ground beef) etc can be pre-prepared and divided into individual breakfast sized serves. Put them in small plastic containers in the freezer and zap one in the microwave for breakfast. Check the carbs in the recipe to check suitability. Beef bourgignon, Irish Stew (watch the spuds), chicken fricassee, whatever your favourite is. Always test at 1 hr the first time with casseroles - thickeners are usually the carb culprits for high BGs.

6. Leftovers - slices of roast meat, re-heated or cold, re-heated chops etc

Bon Appetit.

Alan, T2, Australia
Everything in Moderation - Except laughter

9 comments:

Tina said...

Alan, what do you do for breakfast when you're traveling?

Tina

Alan said...

Hi Tina

Good question. And an idea to add to my travel blog - thanks.

Several choices. Where a local breakfast is available that will let me select from ham, eggs, bacon, sausage etc - I try to eat locally. In many hotels in Europe breakfast was included and usually had at least cold cuts and hard-boiled eggs; not always the best, but at least it got me going and sometimes it was much better than that. The Charles Hotel in Budapest breakfast was memorable - best anywhere. I wish I could say the same about the room. Sometimes I'd do a little negotiating with the Hotel Staff on arrival - you never know what's possible unless you ask. More than once the other diners looked a little miffed as they queued at the breakfast buffet while I was served my omelette or sausage and egg.

In the UK my wife and I shared a "Full English"; she had the cereal, juice, toast and fruit and I had the bacon, sausage, eggs, and odd things like black or white puddings - I even tried haggis in Scotland. Never, ever, again.

In the USA I searched out "diners" for ham or bacon and eggs, with a little reconnoitring the night before on arrival. Or, occasionally splashed out and used room service for an omelette or similar. Sometimes the diner was far enough away to also cause the morning's exercise.

And finally, on our 'round-the-world trips I travelled with a couple of plastic plates and plastic cutlery, a small electric skillet and a "cooler" pack with a couple of ice-bricks. If the hotel suited (no smoke alarm problems etc) we would buy some cereal (for my wife), eggs, onion, capsicum (peppers), cheese and milk and discreetly cook in the room in the morning. Quite often we also used the cooler pack to store salads we pre-made for roadside picnics. The hotel restaurants quite happily stored our "freezer bricks" in their freezer overnight. The cooler pack always had diet soda and a bottle of wine in it as well.

Sounds like work? When you're travelling for months at a time, your own cooking can taste wonderful sometimes and it really wasn't much of a hassle.

On restaurant meals, see my entry on "Travelling on a Diet" here : http://loraltravel.blogspot.com/2006/10/food-glorious-food.html

Cheers, Alan

Bulldog said...

Here is another egg recipe.
I use egg beaters, a table spoon of salsa. fat free grated cheese, and morning star breakfast links.
Sprinkle a bit of parmasean, cook in a frying pan coated with olive oil and finish off the top by broiling the whole thing for a couple of minutes (until slightly brown).

Alan said...

Hi Bulldog

Thanks for the idea. I'll be setting up a "recipes" section in a later post.

Cheers, Alan

KevinB said...

Just a couple more breakfast hints:

many hotels now come with a small microwave oven. I found a small plastic 2-egg microwave tool that produces two "poached" eggs from my home m-wave in about 50 seconds. It folds flat for easy storage. At home, I lubricate it with cooking spray, but a tiny bit of butter (saved from the bread basket at dinner the night before?) would work just as well. Just break one egg into each section, muddle the yolk a bit with a fork (or muddle it a lot if you want semi-scrambled), and pop in the m-wave. Avoids a lot of fat, and clean up is very easy.

At home, I do almost all meats on my "George Foreman" grill. The non-stick surface means I don't need to add any fat, and the sloped surface drains away fat as the meat cooks. When I'm finished, the drip tray always contains 5-10 grams of pure fat which isn't going into me!

If you can tolerate a few carbs, and have a toaster oven available, whole wheat English muffins split with a little low-fat cheddar and a piece of ham (or salami/prosciutto or what have you) sandwiched around a m-wave poached egg described above makes a very creditable version of the Egg McMuffin with about half the fat.

Anonymous said...

Hi Alan,

doubt you'll see this, but if you do, I'd like to thank you for what you've done for me in the past.

I'm having severe personal problems right now, but thanks to you and the other members of the diabetes NG, my numbers are still under control after 5 years. (5.9 A1C without meds!)

John C.

Alan said...

G'day again John, nice to see you again.

Sorry about the late reply; I'm near the end of a trip to China and this got lost in the myriad other things going on.

I hope things have improved since you wrote.

Cheers, Alan

Anonymous said...

I am not doing well with breakfast. One egg and one slice of bacon will spike me. oatmeal is worse. I am trying fruits but yesterday the pineapple spiked me. I will try the hints. thanks.

Alan said...

Fruit is unlikely to help. What numbers are you seeing at bedtime and when you rise?

Read this: http://loraldiabetes.blogspot.com/2009/02/i-ate-nothing-why-are-my-bgs-high.html

What did you eat or drink as well as the egg and bacon?

Cheers, Alan