Friday, January 27, 2012

Phase 1 friendly Moussaka & Meatballs and Cabbage

Life has kept me from blogging.  There were some tense family moments this week, but everything has been ironed out and the world is right again.   Crisis averted:)

I meant to post this days ago, so here goes.  This is my low carb version of moussaka.  It's also Dr. Poon phase 1 friendly.  Moussaka is a traditional Greek eggplant casserole.  It is made with ground beef, eggplant, tomatoes, and bechamel sauce.  I can't eat tomatoes or bechamel sauce (right now), so I've improvised.  It's not a traditional moussaka, but still was tasty.  It's easy to add your own preferences as well!

First I started with:

  • ground beef (1 lbs)
  • mushrooms (8 oz)
  • garlic (1 tbsp)
  • onion powder (1 tsp)
  • pepper (to taste)
  • half salt (1/2 tsp)
  • low sodium beef stock (1 cup)
I browned the ground beef and drained all the fat.  Then I added the rest of the ingredients and cooked it until the liquid evaporated (about 15 mins).

While the liquid was evaporating, I placed a layer of sliced, salted (to remove moisture), rinsed and dried eggplant to a casserole dish.

I spooned the finished meat mixture on the eggplant.  Over the meat I added chopped, frozen spinach, and another layer of eggplant that was first sliced, salted, rinsed, dried, then fried in olive oil.  Over the layer of eggplant and in place of the bechamel sauce, I whisked together a tub of Allegro 4% ricotta cheese and 2 eggs.  After I whisked it smooth, I poured it on top of the casserole and baked at 350 for 45 minutes.  I let it sit for 15 minutes before serving.
It was good.  I'm not a huge fan of eggplant, but it was something different and was an easy lunch for work.

Another meal I ate this week that was actually quite yummy (because I really like cabbage) was meatballs and cabbage.
I know this would not be to everyone's taste, but I sauteed the sliced cabbage in a skillet with olive oil, half salt, pepper and chopped garlic.  Cooked it until tender.  I made the meatballs ahead of time and just added them to the pan to heat up.  I served it with yellow mustard and it was YUMMY!

I just realized that I eat A LOT of red meat.  Part of that is because I am anemic and have been since being pregnant with my son.  I haven't had my blood tested since beginning my lifestyle change, so maybe things are different now.  All I know is that I eat red meat like it's going out of style.  I actually crave it.  It's not good to eat as much red meat as I do, so I'll have to start using ground chicken and turkey more in my ground meat recipes.  No sense in exchanging one health problem (obesity) for another (heart disease).  Have a good weekend all!


  1. Looks great. I am assuming that is fresh garlic. IS that correct?

    1. If I wasn't so lazy, I would use fresh garlic. I use the already chopped kind that's stored in oil.

  2. I'm glada your family stuff was sorted Leigh!

  3. I eat a lot of red meat too by the way, but just because I love it. ;)

  4. Glad all is well with your family issues and all sorted out.
    I just started a week ago on Phase 1 at Dr. Poon's and thank you ever so much for your recipes.....I'm trying them all and so far my family has enjoyed them.This moussaka looks yummy as it is my husband's favourite dish.

  5. I have been anemic all my life mostly because I don't like meat at all, and red the least of all. Now I take iron supplements but am still anemic. My doctor is always urging me to eat more meat - but I just can't stand the texture no matter how I cook it, I do manage to eat it 2-3 x a week just because I know I have to. This why I alwasy struggled with Atkins or other low carb plans - not that it was impossible - but it was so hard and so much work to figure out that I gave up.

    I'm so glad you've found what works for you :)

  6. Both recipes look divine! I love me some cabbage!!!! As for the red meat, I don't crave like I used to. I am loving the "poultry versions" of good red meat.

    Have a great day!

  7. That looks really interesting and delicious.

  8. Replies
    1. I'm not really sure. I guess you could put everything into My Fitness Pal and it could give you the run down on serving size and nutritional value. It's been a long time since I made that...