Overeating during the holidays combined with the chance for a clean slate contributes to the enthusiastic resolve with which dieters approach and pass the new year. After weeks of too many sweets, the diet is a welcome respite. Well, almost.
The problem, this year as every year, is sticking to the diet once the resolution is made. Boredom, anxiety over Christmas bills and old habits all get in the way of maintaining the proper attitude for weight loss.
A proper frame of mind will help. If a dieter perceives a regimen as more than tiresome, the diet might last a day or two longer (and what is a diet, after all, but making it through aother day?)
If limited time inhibits a successful diet, let curried veal and eggplant rescue the harried cook. Serve the dish with 1/2 cup of (preferable brown) rice and a brightly colored vegatable -- steamed green beans, broccoli or carrots. If your grocery allows more items in the express lane, you're encouraged once again to buy bouillon cubes or stock of some kind for cooking the rice.
We hope that all "express lane" enthusiasts received a pepper grinder for Christmas. If not, they are advised to purchase one during the ubiquitous post-Christmas sales.
As usual, it is assumed that every kitchen has flour, sugar, salt, pepper, and some kind of oil or butter.
EXPRESS LANDE LIST: eggplant, ground veal, onion, curry powder, chili powder, rice, green beans, oregano.
CURRIED EGGPLANT AND VEAL (2 servings) 2 cups peeled and diced eggplant (about 1/2-inch dice) 1/2 teaspoon salt 12 ounces ground veal 1/2 cup sliced onion 2 teaspoons olive oil 3/4 teaspoon curry powder 1/8 teaspoon chili powder
Place eggplant in a colander and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Toss and allow it to stand 30 minutes. Pat it dry with paper towels. Cook the veal over medium high heat in a non-stick skillet, breaking veal into pieces. When veal begins to brown, reduce the heat to medium and add onion and oil and continue to cook about 5 minutes. Add eggplant and continue to cook until the eggplant begins to brown. Stir in remaining salt, curry powder and chili powder. Cook until the mixture is well browned and all moisture has evaporated. Each serving has 350 calories; with 1/2 cup rice, about 430. From "Weight Watchers 365-Day Menu Cookbook"
GREEN BEANS WITH OREGANO (2 servings) 1/2 pound green beans 1/2 teaspoon oregano
Bring about 1/2 cup water or broth to boil in a skillet. Add beans and oregano, cover tightly and reduce heat. Steam about 10 minutes, or until cooked to desired doneness. About 30 calories per serving.