TVP, Part Deux

Yes, I’m at it again.  I’m nothing if not a determined cook.  You might remember my failed experiment at using TVP to bake with.  But it still seemed like such a good idea.  For those of you who don’t read and memorize every bit of drivel that I write, TVP stands for ‘textured vegetable protein.’  I bought it because it looked interesting, didn’t have any taste of its own, and the stats were pretty darn good–12 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber in 1/4 cup for 80 calories.

So after the peach meatloaf fiasco, I googled ‘baking with TVP,’ and came up with this carrot cake recipe!  It was on a diabetic support forum, and the poor person who came up with the recipe had bought 25 pounds of TVP and was tired of TVP oatmeal.  NO KIDDING!  So I tried the recipe, ground the heck out of that TVP (it looked like dust by the time I was done with it,) followed the recipe to a T, and tasted the batter to check it out.  Can we all say “T stands for TEXTURE?”  I almost threw the whole thing away.  I couldn’t imagine it being improved by baking, and why heat up the house and have an extra dish to wash.  But then I decided it wasn’t sweet enough and didn’t have enough spice.  So I dumped in  about 1/4 cup of agave nectar and added 2 more teaspoons of cinnamon.  EUREKA!  I like this stuff!  I cut it into 10 pieces, which supposedly have 200 calories each (a bit ‘pricey’ for a dessert  in my book.)  But the author said they took it to work for lunch every day.  So the first day I had it for lunch.  It held me all the way ’til dinnertime (4 hours!)  Today I decided to press my luck, and had a piece for breakfast.  Again, it held me for four hours, in spite of a 3 mile run/walk with Noah mid-morning.  That is very impressive to me.

Now, the only thing is, it occurred to me, they process this stuff especially to GIVE it this texture that I am doing my darndest to get rid of by grinding.  Aren’t I just trying to turn it back into soy flour?  Sure enough, I checked the stats on soy flour and they are almost exactly the same.  I will be getting some soy flour to experiment with.  I know there is some info out there on not eating too much soy.  I don’t think I eat that much.  Edemame and tofu a couple times a month is all I can think of.  Since I am still trying to avoid wheat, the soy flour seems like a good alternative.

Here’s the carrot cake.  Plenty of texture, to be sure.  But more like a whole grain type of texture, not like hamburger.  Nice and moist.  If I succeed with the soy flour, I’ll post the recipe.

So.  Lots of interesting conversation in the  comments from  yesterdays post.  Be sure to check them out.   Pubsgal included an interesting link as well.

Exercise and food was really excellent today.  I felt like running a good portion of the time on our three mile walk this morning.  Had a good workout at  the gym, and a nice swim afterwards.  Still noticing that my weight is definitely up, and I kept thinking, ‘I’m gonna weigh myself tomorrow morning.’  And then the thought struck me, knowing my weight number is NOT going to change the way I am eating.  I am making good choices, and I don’t want to eat less.  I only want to stop eating when  I am already full and of course, I want to stop eating when I am anxious/bored/irritated/whatever.  Knowing the number will not change my (good) behavior.  It might make me eat more out of stress/anxiety.  So, the scale continues on sabbatical.

Ooh.  Here’s tonight’s dinner–most excellent!  ‘Fish Taco in a Bowl.’  Just mixed lettuce, tomato, onion, cilantro with a little balsamic vinegar/olive oil dressing, topped with a piece of red snapper ‘fried’ on medium high with PAM and garlic salt, then squeezed lime juice on at the end.  Yummo.  I kinda wanted another piece of fish.  I had an ear of corn on the side–didn’t think you guys needed to have a picture of corn.  It was most excellent, though.

Back tomorrow with Noah news, I think.

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6 thoughts on “TVP, Part Deux

  1. good pics

    I did go back and read the comments from the day before – they were all interesting – it was a thought provoking post.

    heat index has been over 100 here. been NEEDING the pool each afternoon. Yes, we have air, but pool is still very much desired after exercise.

  2. The carrot cake looked good–now all you need is that cream cheese/powdered sugar icing Lori concocted to make it perfect! LOL I also love your fish taco salad. That one, I’ll try. I can never find red snapper, but I’ll keep looking. It was pretty offhand in your post, but congratulations on your run/walks with Noah. That “wanting to run” is pretty major. Hope you’re not as sweltering as we are, though.

  3. That looks really good. I have some TVP, too, that I make veggie chili with (you might like this, you know. It has a texture like ground turkey in chili).

    Twin alert: “I am making good choices, and I don’t want to eat less. I only want to stop eating when I am already full and of course, I want to stop eating when I am anxious/bored/irritated/whatever.”

    I’ve been browsing Pubgal’s link to the Ask Evelyn site. It’s interesting.

  4. I’ve been cooking with TVP for 3 or 4 years now, and I can tell you two things. One, you can make fantastic foods of great variety with it. Two, but there’s a huge learning curve. The easiest is to get the “bits” or small pieces, and Italian and Mexican foods turn out the best when you use it in place of ground meat. I find that any one flavor “beef” or “chicken” or “ham” can be overwhelming and then not taste right, like artificially. One of the tricks is to make sure that there enough sauce, spices, etc. to blend the flavor in with. Also, experiment with combinations – chicken is ok alone, but beef and ham are not. You have to dilute their flavor by mixing in some chicken or plain bits. You can also jazz up some beef things by adding just a touch of ham bits. I recommend adding a little oil or margarine. Real meat has fat, and the fat is what gives it most of its flavor and richness. You don’t have to load on the fat calories, but some oil or margarine will enhance the flavor and consistency of the dish a lot. Here are two online stores that have great products: Honeyville Grains and Harmony House.

    Experiment! And enjoy.

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