Cooked by TFW: The Low-Carb Dinner Date

Before we even hop into this week’s meal, I’m happy to announce that I finally measured out how much “a handful” actually is! I was baking cookies the other day – a lot of folks at the gym are asking for that recipe. Soon, my friends. Soon – and scooped up a handful of chocolate chips. Before throwing them into my mixing bowl, I put them in a measuring cup.

Ladies and Gentlemen… and whatever University of South Florida graduatesmay be reading this (Tampa is NOT “South” Florida, and any justification you make for it is a lie… you’re a liar and I use USF degrees for toilet paper)… I, Dr. Six Finger Tym, Esquire – by the power vested in me by the state of Colorado and Train.Fight.Win – OFFICIALLY proclaim that a “handful” is…

1/3 Cup!

Please keep in mind, I’m built like a Great Dane puppy… I have big paws, so my handful may not be your handful. However, going forward, any recipe that calls for a “handful” of something measures out to roughly 1/3 to 1/2 Cup. As always, follow your heart and use your discretion.

With that out of the way, let’s talk dinner. Specifically, let’s discuss a dinner for two that’s all three of our favorite attributes: 1) easy to make; 2) healthy; 3) say it with me, kids… versatile!

I don’t have a catchy name for this meal, so we’re just going to call it… “The Perfect Low Carb Dinner Date.” What makes it so versatile is that you can substitute the chicken for tofu or another non-meat lean protein to make it for the vegetarian in your life (FUN FACT! I literally just spent 45 minutes googling whether Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard was vegan and the answers are inconclusive… It comes down to the sugar they use and if it is filtered through bone char… So if you use vegan Dijon mustard, this is a great vegan meal. Clarity matters, y’all.) You can substitute coconut milk for the heavy cream, too! VERSATILE!!!!

Regardless of what ingredients you substitute, this is the perfect dinner for two! Uncle Tym Tym isn’t just here to get you in bikini (I prefer Tymkini, but I also spend AT MINIMUM an hour a day staring at myself shirtless in a mirror… so of course I prefer my name in whatever we’re talking about) season shape; I’m also here to improve your swoon game while getting in great shape.

I naturally make a mess in the kitchen. For this meal, you could easily use three skillets and a saucepan, but I attempt it in one skillet and a saucepan. Also, this is our first #CookedByTFW meal where I get to use the new Veggie Spaghettifier. In the past, I’ve made it with rotini pasta; but let’s save those carbs for a future cookie post, shall we?

Enough blabbering… Let’s get cooking!

Ingredients

  • 1 Chicken Breast (or about half a pound of your lean protein of choice)
  • 3 **HANDFULS** (pretend game show sirens and bells just went off… also check under your seats, because you may have just won a free bag of) Brussel’s Sprouts
  • 2 Zucchinis
  • 3/4 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 4 Tablespoons Dijon Sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. Prep your food. Pat dry the chicken breast with a paper towel and slice laterally into about a quarter to a half inch thick cuts. Wash and then halve the Brussels sprouts. Use your Veggie Noodlication Device to transform your zucchini into beautiful noodles. Separate these three ingredients into individual bowls. Season with your salt and pepper.

Quick Question: Do y’all use regular salt? My roommate has that fancy pink salt. I know folks who swear by coarse sea salt. I – probably unsurprisingly, for our long-time (Bruh, we’ve only been doing this since mid-April; is three months “long-term?” Maybe if this was my dating advice blog. HIIIYOOOO! #ForeverAlone) readers – use garlic salt. Get your garlic salt from Costco, and, as always, thank me in the morning!

2. Protein First. In a medium skillet lightly sprayed with cooking oil on medium-to-high heat, sauté your chicken, flipping occasionally, until seared on both sides and cooked through. Transfer chicken to a clean bowl. SAFETY TIP: Don’t put your cooked chicken in the same bowl you had your raw chicken is… that’s cooking 101, but it’s also 2017, so those types of warnings are still necessary.

3. Cook the Veggies. So, like I said, I’m using the same skillet. Here’s my Pro Tip of the Week (#PTOTW): Get really cheap whiskey and deglaze the skillet, scraping all the chicken juices. I literally buy a 1.75 Liter of Kirkland brand blended scotch whisky frooooom… YOU GUESSED IT! Costco (Where is my sponsorship?!). It’s $17. Like, THAT cheap when I say “cheap whiskey.” This is obviously an optional step for adults over the age of 21.

Let’s assume you did go the Uncle Tym Tym “I’m not in Fight Camp” route and used some cheap “cough medicine,” once it reduces by half, toss in your brussies and cook until slightly browned, about 8-10 minutes.  If you didn’t, just spray some more cooking oil in the skillet and brown the brussies. Transferred the browned brussies to the same bowl as the cooked chicken (alliterations on alliterations) and then sauté the zucchini noodles in that same dang skillet!

4. Get Saucy. As you’re cooking the veggies, in the small saucepan, simmer the heavy cream (or cream substitute). Add the Dijon mustard to the cream and stir until blended. Let it cook down a little. Once your noodles are ready, reduce the heat under the skillet to low-to-medium; add the chicken and brussies to the skillet and stir. Then add about half of your sauce and stir thoroughly. You can continue to add more sauce until you’ve reached desired creaminess.

Divide this deliciousness between two bowls and share with the love of your life (or your love of the week; no shame in the game). And, as always, THANK. ME. IN. THE. MORNING.

We’d love to see your version of this meal, so be sure to share pics on all the social media platforms with the hashtag #CookedByTFW. Happy Eating!

LA Jennings