So there I was, at the tender age of 44. Just your average barbecue-lovin’, pie bakin’ chowhound chick. My friends used to love coming with me on romps to Queens for Sichuan food, and coming over to our place for decadent dinner parties. But my pork eating days were numbered, because seemingly out of nowhere, I found out I had a 90% blocked artery in my heart. Two stents later, the nutritionists were giving me my marching orders: broiled chicken breast and steamed broccoli. Now, I like chicken and broccoli just fine. But plain, boring food? “No fucking way,” I believe were my exact words.
Yes, the new me, kept alive by little pieces of metal, clearly had to find a new way of eating. However, I wasn’t about to settle for anything less than hearty, spicy, exciting food. My friends were skeptical the first time they came over for dinner again. But I surprised them, because I found ways around the restrictions. It took some doing, but I created apple pies made with heart-healthy oils. I made lasagna without a gram of fat – and no one could tell the difference.
Not surprisingly, my experience made my friends re-think the way they ate, too. When deciding what to make for dinner – or perhaps before biting into a pastry – my friend Tracy said she would ask herself, “What would Cathy eat?” Thus, the inspiration for this blog. (Thank you, Tracy!) While my diet is far from perfect, it’s pretty damn heart-healthy. And I don’t miss the pork. Well … not too much, anyway.