Monday, March 14, 2011

That four letter word...

Yes, it's being said at my house again. We are on a D.I.E.T. My earliest memories involve bread and butter. Mom would carefully butter the slice at the table for me, homemade bread that was still warm. When memories are that good, it's hard to leave them behind. They are a part of all that is good and holy. When you like to cook, I mean really like to cook, it's punishment not to prepare food. I love the whole process... searching for the recipe, shopping for the ingredients, chopping and simmering and stirring. It's not been too bad really, we are eating healthy again and so far no one has died. Low fat, low calorie, whole grains and plenty of veges and fruit... this is the best way for me. This time of year gives me the encouragement I need to stick to a diet. It's warmer and I'm thinking about summer and having to get on the boat with all my blubber showing. Sorry if I've ruined anyones' appetite with such a visual word, but blubber it is. Jiggly, white blubber. Have you ever noticed that Jello doesn't make a white Jello... just wouldn't sell.

We've been having salads for dinner and since it's been nice, Hubby has been grilling the meat. I found a great recipe from one of our favorite hangouts in Recipes From Historic Texas. It's chocked full of famous places like The Mansion on Turtle Creek at Dallas, The Menger Hotel in beautiful San Antonio and from Hill Country The Gristmill River Restaurant.

Friday nights we'd go out to Gruene, a short drive from our house. Down a curvy little road, over a low water "slab" and in no time we'd see the beautiful emerald green water of the Guadalupe River. A crowd would gather in the beer garden outside the 100 year old building that was once a cotton gin. No one was in a rush, the night air was beginning to cool and the breezes would rustle the leaves above us. Evenings in South Texas are pure Heaven with starry skies and a moon up above that you can almost reach up and touch! The Gristmill had such charm that whether you ate inside or out, it was a real treat. From bar food to gourmet, it was all delicious!

The Gristmill's Beef Tenderloin Salad



1 lb margarine
1/2 c Worcestershire sauce
1/2 c soy sauce
1 c fresh lime juice
1/2 T chopped garlic
1/4 c chopped cilantro, diced fine
1 T black pepper
salt to taste
(This makes 4 cups of marinade, only use 1/4 cup prepared for this recipe)
7 ounces beef tenderloin tips
leaf lettuce
Romaine lettuce
fresh spinach
4 slices avocado
2 wedges tomato
2 ounces vinaigrette (recipe follows)

Melt margarine over low flame. Add Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, diced cilantro, salt and pepper. Place garlic in blender with just enough water to cover blades. Blend until smooth and add to marinade. Cook over low flame for another 10 minutes. (Use only 1/4 cup for this recipe) Allow to cool, then dip beef tips in marinade. Grill or saute in hot pan to your preference. Add the tips to a 3 leaf mixture of leaf lettuce, Romaine and spinach. Add 2 ounces of Vinaigrette Dressing along with avocado and mix. Serve in a salad bowl with tomato wedges.

6 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/8 tablespoon sugar
1/16 tablespoon salt
5 tablespoons salad oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons buttermilk
2 teaspoons chopped green onions
1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/16 teaspoon chopped basil

In a mixing bowl, combine the mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, buttermilk, white pepper, sugar and salt. Mix together with a wire whisk until smooth. Slowly add salad oil while whisking vigorously. In a food processor blend the garlic and onion, then add the red wine vinegar until the onions are in tiny pieces. Slowly add the onion, garlic and vinegar mixture and basil to the dressing while whisking. Refrigerate. Serves 2.
Printable Recipe


  1. This sounds really yummy! You gave me a chuckle with the white jellow, yuk!

  2. I've been on a diet for a few weeks now and with the exception of 2 restaurant visits while we were in TX, I've done pretty well eating healthy. Then yesterday we went out to lunch at a chain restaurant. I thought I'd made a healthy choice in selecting a salad. Little did I know! When we got home I looked up the nutrional info on it on the internet and my eyes about popped out of my head! I don't think I'll be indulging in the salad again for awhile - or anything else on their menu for that matter.

  3. You described exactly what hurts me most about dieting. The cooking! As you know I love to bake the most...I cant' because we both have no will power.

    We are trying is a killer. I think the meat salad is a great idea! Try it with grilled or stir fried chicken breast strips.
    Avocados are probably way too high in carbs, but the tomatoes would be OK for me.

    I have lost my enthusiasm for food!

  4. We are on a D.I.E.T. too... my husband has done wonderfully - 27 lbs! Me? not so much. Today is a new day, though, right?....

  5. Actually they do make white jello. It is white grape and it is delicious.
    Spring is always the best time to start the food improvement challenge (diet is a 4 letter word). The better weather gets us moving more.

  6. That tenderloin salad looks scrumptious, Joy! By the way, you have an award waiting. Come over and pick it up!...:)JP

  7. The Gristmill! My parents live just a hop skip and a jump from there. ...and I had that salad (at least my version of it) just tonight for dinner. What a coincidence that you posted the recipe!


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