4HB Diet / 4HB ダイエット

Hi there!

During the holiday season 2011, it is almost impossible to do diet. Obviously, we did not even try doing diet during the holiday season. But we noticed that we have put some unnecessary weight and now we must do something about this… 🙁

Now new year 2012, it is a great time to begin our diet! “New Year! New You!!” (New Year’s resolution?!) Our goal is to lose healthy amount of weight and be strong and healthy! Our awesome friend Mrs. J& Mr. D here in Austin introduced us this diet called 4 Hour Body by Tim Ferriss.

4 Hours Body (4HB): You need to avoid carbohydrate including bread, rice, oats and so on, dairy products, sugar, and fruits. You are required to have beans with every meal, meat, and vegetables. And you will eat each meal until you are full. So you won’t get hungry. No alcohol permitted except you can have up to 2 glasses of dry red wine per day. (I don’t drink so this won’t bother me much.) With this practice, you’ll lose average 15 to 20 pound in 4 weeks without exercise.

Too good to be true? Well, we both have seen our friends Mrs. J& Mr. D lost tons of weight while practicing the 4HB and they both look great! We also know a few other people did or still doing this diet lost tons of weight…

It will be hard for me because of dairy and sugar. I love sugar and cream. I love to bake so those two are essential. It will be hard for my Mr. Z because of beer = carbohydrate. But we need to lose weight (healthy amount of weight, we are definitely chubby right now) so we decided to try this diet for 1 week and document the results.

Next, I will introduce to you my meal plan for this week and results from 4HB diet! Stay tuned!!!

Mrs. H

どーも!

久々のブログ。 ブログって、きっかけがないと書けない(ただの言い訳)。
さてさて、ホリデーシーズンも終わり、やっとこさ、普通の生活に戻った今日この頃、日本そしてアメリカの皆様、いかがお過ごしでしょうか?

いやー、とにかく、2011年は色々あって、大変でした。 特にサンクスギビング (感謝祭)からお正月まで、家でパーティーを2回ホストし、その都度お客様が20名ぐらいいらっしゃって、ホストとしては、もうしばらくパーティーのホストはしたくないなっと。 アメリカは、サンクスギビング (感謝祭)とクリスマスで、とにかくモリモリ、チキンやらターキーやら、デザートやら、やたら料理の品数、そして量が増え、またそれを、整然と皆モリモリ食します。 なので、たいていお正月に、皆ダイエットを始めます。(笑)

家も同じです。 ってか、家はテキサスに引っ越してきてから、とにかくここは食事が美味しいので、やたらと太った模様・・・ 2012年、「新しい年、新しい自分!」(← 日本語直訳、なんか変・・・)みたいなのを目標に、健康的なダイエットで、健康的に痩せよう!と、色々とダイエット法を探しておりました。

ここ、テキサスに引っ越してきて、とても仲良くしてもらっている Mrs. J & Mr. Dさんご夫妻。 彼らから 4 Hour Bodyと言うダイエット法を教えてもらいました。これは、Tim Ferrissさん(同い年で億万長者! すばらしい!)が自分の経験と実験(自分を実験台にして)で生み出したダイエット法!

4 Hour Body (4HB) とは、炭水化物(米、麦、小麦等)、フルーツ、砂糖、そして乳製品を全く食べてはいけないダイエット法です。 その代わり、豆類(特にレンズマメ)、肉類・魚類、後は野菜類をたっぷり食べること。 お酒もドライな赤ワインをグラス2杯まで。 他のお酒類は全てだめ! 1週間に1日、Binge Day(好きなものを好きなだけ食べてもオッケーな日)っていうご褒美の日があります! で、これを4週間続けると、運動しなくっても、平均で15lbから20lb (7kg から10kg)痩せるらしいのです。

「え~!運動なしってのが、うそっぽい」と言うのが、私の最初のリアクション。 でもね、お友達のMrs. J & Mr. Dさんご夫妻は、このダイエットでかなりお痩せになって、超調子が良いらしい。このダイエット、どうも本当に成功するらしい・・・

砂糖と乳製品を食べれないってのが、お菓子作り好きで、それを食べるのがもっと好きな私としては、ちょっと辛いなっと・・・ ビール=炭水化物が大好きな旦那様Mr.Zにも、ちょっと難しいダイエットかなっと? でも、そんな事言っている場合じゃない! 健康の為にも痩せなければ!っということで、取りあえず、1週間試してみることに。 

次のブログには、1週間の4HB メニューと、結果をお知らせしまーす!
乞うご期待!!

Mrs. H

Christmas Eve 2010

Zomie sign

Having relocated the base of operations to the great state of Texas, I am now beginning to see the realities of a year round love affair with Carts, Tacos and Beers. Reflecting on the last few months of food-scapades I am suddenly jerked into the realization that I have only just begun.

This is certainly not what I am used to associating with winter, but the new smells and surroundings of Austin are ever more seeming like home and less like an extended holiday. I realized that this Christmas we wouldn’t be eating the same way we have in past years. So instead of the usual blathering on about some titanic gorge fest, I think I will list my top 10 must eats and drinks of Austin TX(so far).

10. Chilantrohttp://www.chilantrobbq.com/

A Korean twist on a Texmex classic, the Chilantro truck swaps marinated pork for Bulgolgi and jalapenos for Sriracha. This unlikely duo seems to please on many levels, the heat lover, the asian cuisine lover, the wild man and the late night snack attack.

9. Old school BBQhttp://www.oldschoolbbqandgrill.com/

Texas and BBQ are in fact somewhat synonymous. And there are many great places to get a full plate of BBQ at. This little spot is something of legend for everyone as the BBQ is so high regarded that it is often hard to get anything that you want because someone ahead of you just bought 20pounds of it. This issue forces me to leave it close to the bottom of the list.

8. Mighty Fine Burgershttp://mightyfineburgers.com/

Cheeseburgers are nothing short of an American miracle, and in a place where beef is king, there was bound to a be a place that is not only fresh but fast. Mighty Fine practices what it preaches and offers burgers made from the finest ground beef (which you can watch them grind) and a In & Out menu that focuses on the basics, burger cheese fries and shakes. Make sure you ask the staff how they are 😉

7. El Chile – http://www.elchilecafe.com/

Old reliable. I think of El Chile and I realize that the consistency and accessibility out weigh any of my inhibitions about returning to the usual place. I love that everything is really good and that the flavors of each dish reflect the progress of Texmex cuisine. Nothing can be more refreshing than a Shalongo (frozen spicy margarita) and a Charlie’s Lunch Special.

6. Gourdoughs Doughnutshttp://www.gourdoughs.com/

Doughnuts are something of a phenomenon here. Denver could barely pass mustard in terms of quality for the yeasty fried treats but Texas has a strong tradition of amazing fried confections. Gourdoughs is more than an exceptional trailer, it’s the standard that desserts in general should be measured. Doughnuts do not adequately describe the excellence that is available at Gourdoughs.

5. Upper Crust Bakeryhttp://theuppercrustbakery.com/

Gluten of the wheat variety can’t possibly be this delicious. I know that I can’t compare this bakery to an elits french patisserie but, there is a sense that this place is filled with a wealth of breads, pastries and even quiche built from the essentials of butter, eggs, milk and flour. A site that is the undisputed authority of all things baked fresh.

4. East Side Kingshttp://www.eastsidekingaustin.com/

Somewhere in the back of my mind there is a place that combines the gritty punk rock of a dirty concert and the flavors and smells of my favorite Asian snacks. East Side Kings is that place. Tucked behind a bar in a trailer that cannot possibly hold more than 3 people, beef tongue and beet homefries are being served to me on beds of delicious rice. I hate to say this but the average Japanese man would find this place a paradise.

3. The Draught Househttp://www.draughthouse.com/

Even though I have left the warm bosom of the Colorado craft beer network, I have found a new pride in this local pub’s ability to not only serve things that I know with regular celebrity but introduce me to new fresh concepts both foreign and domestic. The Austin craft beer scene is a burgeoning one on the edge of volcanic eruption. This gentle beer garten’s a testament to the really educated palette of Austin’s beer lover.

2. Torchy’s Tacos http://torchystacos.com/

Without going into the rant that I am prepared to give about this local gem, it is safe to say that if you want something that is not only consistently amazing but satisfying, you don’t have to look any farther than Torchy’s. Although the ravenous fanboydem in Austin would elevate the appearance of this humble product, the fact remains that they consistently have some of the most delicious tacos that could be dreamed up by mere mortals.

1. Odd Duck farm to trailerhttp://oddduckfarmtotrailer.com/

A gourmet chef whipping up sustainable trailer food that would make parisian chefs blush at the quality and price. Nothing really beats fresh meats and vegetables roasted, braised or otherwise grilled over the warm glow of a wood fire to fill you with a healthy flavor of the natural land. If this is a sign of the coming dystopia that everyone fears, I only hope to quicken the pace of its arrival.

Free Gelato Day at Wholefoods

What am I talking about? Is there really a free gelato day at Wholefoods? No. But there should be. For what they charge to fill a bag of groceries there should be a consumer appreciation day.

I know I have misdirected some of you but allow me to whisk you away to this far away city known as Denver Colorado, wherein I will tell you a tale that involves an old friend, goat tacos and free gelato. Continue reading

New York Our Dream Land…

First, I’d like to apologize those who actually read our blog… it has been two weeks since our last food blog update… Well, we were in NYC two weeks ago for 5 days, which was awesome (except my company trip), we had so much fun walking around the city, wondering around villages, and Brooklyn…

I have so much to tell you how awesome NYC was… Food wise, NYC MUST have high quality and inexpensive food because of the very serious food industry competition. I mean, you can go to the most expensive restaurant in the city and satisfy your taste buzz, but Zach and I like to go inexpensive and high quality food… So here we go, I’d like to introduce you the three exciting NYC eatery, first the magnificent cup cake!

Magnolia Bakery NYC
Box
Bakery Outside
I was recommended this place by one of my best friends. The first night we were there in NYC, we were wondering around the times square and found this magnificent Cup Cake Bakery! I was planning to visit but it was destiny we just came across to this store. So we did not resist but went into the store immediately and purchased 4 delicious Cup cakes!

Amazing Cupcakes Banana & Carmel Cupkae
We got a Chocolate Cup Cake, Vanilla Cup Cake, Red Velvet Cup Cake, and Banana Caramel Cup Cake. I dived right into the Banana Caramel Cup Cake so I forgot to take picture of this Cup Cake as a whole… sorry… the Cake was so moist, the balance of Caramel frosting and the Banana Cake were just right. Not too sweet but definitely you can taste both main components of this Cup Cake.

A Chocolate and Vanilla Cup Cake were okay, not so exciting… but the Cream Cheese frosting was extraordinary. I noticed that their frosting was not so sweet but just right to compliment the actual Cake.

OMG, Red Velvet Cup Cake… super moist, looks super red devilish, but just right amount of Coco hitting with the creamy frosting… I don’t think I have ever had such moist Cup Cake ever in my life!!

The second amazing eatery in NYC is located at Little Italy… Da Gennaro Restaurant

One of our dearest friends took us there said “The best Gnocchi Ever!” I was really excited because literally I have never had good Gnocchi in my life. The Gnocchi that I had tasted before was always mushy or gummy and too starchy… I made it myself once and that experience was disappointed. Another fact that I was excited about this experience because we were going to eat an Italian food in Little Italy in NYC. I mean it may be the closest you can get to eat the real authentic Italian Food, don’t you think?? Well, with all these exciting facts, we arrived at Da Gennaro Restaurant in Little Italy NYC!

The Italian Feast!
Little Italy Feast
This is something I ordered, which has Gnocchi with Pesto, Fetachini Alfredo, and Totellini Boroneze, just like Italian Flag the meal was nicely presented in the white plate. Guess what I ate first in this plate? Yes, you guessed it right, Gnocchi with Pesto, as our friend describes as the BEST Gnocchi. He was right, it was an amazing Gnocchi, it is soft, creamy, and melt in your mouth. The pest was just right with Basil, Garlic, and Olive Oil… I am sure there is some nuts and cheese in this sauce but it did not overcome the actual Gnocchi taste. It was divined!! Fetachini Alfredo was amazing as well, the cream sauce was soft and light, the pasta was cooked as al dente, and I think it was home made pasta at the restaurant. Tottelini Boroneze, the right amount of Tomato hits the meat sauce with the creamy Tottelini Pasta, it was awesome… Look at this amazing dish one more time. Please go visit Da Gennaro when you are in NYC, you won’t regret it.
Little Italy The Three Amazing Pasta

Last and at least, I was recommended this Pizza place from two of our good friends. This New York Famous Pizza place is located under the Brooklyn Bridge.
Store Outside Grimaldis Outside Tile 2

Grimaldi’s Pizza
The fact was that Zach and I skipped Breakfast and Lunch on this day because we were so excited to go eat this famous New York Pizza in Brooklyn. After the long walk of the Brooklyn Bridge, we were so excited to find this Pizzeria with the ridiculously long line at 2pm.
Long line at 2pm
Line at 2pm
Long line behind us at 2;30pm
Line behind us at 230pm
Well well well, by looking at this long line at 2pm on Sunday, we realized it was a confirmation of the Best Pizza in NYC. So we decided to stay in the line wait for our breakfast/lunch/early dinner patiently.
Hungry Couple
Hungry Couple
We waited for 1.5 hours and we arrived in front of the entrance. We felt that 1.5 hours past right by but the last 5 minutes right in front of the entrance felt another hour of waiting. We got seated and we ordered a large Margarita Pizza and the waiters recommendation of the Pepperoni Sausage and Mushroom Pizza. Also we ordered a Brooklyn Beer and Brooklyn Orange Soda.
Brookly Beverage Brooklyn Orange Soda
You need to ask Zach for the Brooklyn Beer cuz I did not drink it. The Brooklyn Orange Soda was very refreshing not like Fanta Orange… yuck. But you know after skipping breakfast, lunch and walking cross the Brooklyn Bridge, at that point, a glass of Fanta Orange could taste pretty good… 😉

Here are the Pizza Margarita & Pepperoni Sausage Mushroom Pizza.
Best Margarita Pizza Pepparoni Sausage Mushroom
No wonder why people want their pizza. The Pizza Margarita was amazing with the intense Tomato Sauce, Fresh Mozzarella Cheese, and Basil. The Tomato Sauce tested like fresh Tomato, Mozzarella Cheese was creamy and slightly tangy, and Basil was very aromatic. The crust was very thin that crunchy, it was an amazing pizza I have ever had.
Margarita Slice Thin PizzaCan you tell by this pic how thin the crust is?
The Pepperoni Sausage Mushroom Pizza recommended by the waiter was amazing as well. The Pepperoni tasted amazing itself. The Pepperoni and Sausage were not greasy like you imagine. It seems that the oil from the meats incorporated with the mushroom and the thin crust, which balanced really nicely. I usually do not like two meats on one pizza but this was an exceptionally tasty meat Pizza!

Oh I miss you NYC. Zach and I are actually thinking about moving to NYC. This city has such a wonderful history and great food! People are actually pretty nice. Right after we got back to Denver, I stared looking for an apartment in NYC and jobs. 🙂 🙂 🙂

Well, we hope to go visit NYC soon again or move to NYC soon… 🙂 until then, we’ll keep dreaming about the NYC life.

Happy Eating!!
Mrs H

Pasta Pomodoro

Pomodoro RestaurantAs my dear wife, Mrs H, has already indicated her neutrality on the restaurant, I will now exorcise the demon a bit and allow myself to make a couple of critical statements about the seemingly pedestrian eatery. I don’t think that every experience should end with a gold leafed brownie drowning in a mote of vanilla ice cream,  but I can’t help but notice a depressingly strong vein of “meh,” restaurants are finding their way into seemingly sophisticated areas such as Manhattan Beach.

Let us begin with atmosphere. For all intensive purposes seemed innocuous enough, things were clean, the staff was cheerful and prompt, there wasn’t a moment when I was fearing for my life or wondering “in whose drug crazed hands have I landed?” But the menu did lead me to the idea that there would a generous helping of “chain restaurant tom-foolery” lurking around in the shadows. The menu did contain all the staples of a normal Italian eatery but there was something Panda-Express -ish about the entire establishment’s identity or lack there of.

The thing on the menu that immediately caused me to question the legitimacy of the food, the words “USDA organic,” stood proudly next to their salad offerings. Apparently the leaves were organic, but the rest of the menu was “dangerous.” I hate the whole marketing shell game of organic, usda organic, certified organic. My poop is organic but there is no real market for it. Seems like a bit of ploy but on with the real issues.

I had Penne Arrabiata with chicken for my protein. I will admit that my dish was the most delicious of the four but that doesn’t really help very much. There was a Lasagna, Spaghetti and Meatballs plus the wife’s aforementioned delight. All of the red sauces appeared to share a common over salted undertone that really detracted from the overall flavor of the food. The pastas themselves seemed to be cooked close to al dente but ended up seeming to be some sort of pale starch merely there to check out the scenery and possibly score some pot.

The establishment fancies itself a catering service, so every meal item is really tailored to be produced and distributed in high volumes, like the Harry Potter novels. But with the lack of distinction, other than protein, the dishes border on insincere…like Harry Potter novels. That’s right nerds, I said it. Italian food is something so simple that it baffles me how often it is reduced to utter slop.

Hopefully the next time you go to an italian restaurant you will leave commercial establishments like this one by the wayside.

Zach “disgruntled eater” Meyer