Do Better

Arancini (Sicilian rice balls) were a typical meal at my house before weight loss surgery. They are a mixture of meat, sauce, onions, peas and mozzarella sandwiched in a ball of rice, covered in egg and breadcrumbs and deep fried, they look like oranges hence the name arancini (the Italian word for orange is arancia.)

Last night I made a more healthified version. Of course, it's a low carb, riceless version since rice is off my personal list post weight loss surgery. I used the same filling I know and love but made a few key changes...

Shelly's Zucchini Arancini

1 yellow Onion, diced
2 cloves Garlic, minced
1 1/2 pound package of Ground Beef (Ground Turkey could easily be subbed)
1/2 cup Marinara Sauce
1/2 cup Frozen Peas
1 teaspoon Oregano
1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese (divided use)
2 Cheesesticks, diced
3 medium Zucchini, halved

With a tablespoon measure or melon baller scoop out the middles of the zucchini halved creating zucchini boats (save the guts to drop in some soup) and set aside.

Saute onion till golden. Add beef (or turkey) and saute till no pink is seen, drain any fats rendered and discard. Add remaining ingredients (except 2 Tablespoons of the Parmesan and the cheesesticks). Cook about 3 minutes till warmed through.

Spoon mixture into zucchini boats.

Top with remaining 2 Tablespoons of Parmesan and dot with mozzarella cheesestick pieces, you could use fresh mozzarella balls, I used what I had on hand. Bake on a cookie sheet (I lined mine with foil for easier cleanup) at 350 for 45 minutes.

I just wanted to note for those of you that may be new to my blog. I choose not to eat bread, pasta, rice, white potatoes, crackers, chips since having weight loss surgery. I rarely crave them and with yummy (dare I say, tastier) adaptions like the above you can see why. This is my personal choice, plenty of post-ops eat them, and in moderation few foods have no redeeming value, well there's not a whole lot of redeeming value in a Ho Ho or Ding Dong but you know what I mean. Not opening the door to a few items is what I have to do. Those things pasta, rice, BAGELS, basically all white carbs were my pre-op demons. I had little control over them, I often ate triple and quadruple portions in one sitting, they and my lack of control over them were a big reason I become super morbidly obese (BMI 54 at time of surgery) so as part of my lifestyle change 5 years ago I chose to say goodbye to a few frenemies (I loved them but hated them too.)

(That's me in the black apron with a plateful of spaghetti about a month or so before Weight Loss Surgery in 2006)

Maybe white carbs weren't your demons maybe it was sweets, candy, cakes or greasy fried stuff like french fries and chips, maybe you snacked all day or were an emotional eater. You know what your pre-op "thing" was. If you don't... figure it out and find a better path after weight loss surgery.

Weight loss surgery is not a do-over (repeat the same mistakes = get a similar outcome.) Weight loss surgery is a do-better (make some lifestyle changes you can continue forever.)

Every post-ops journey is different. We didn't all get fat the same way or for the same reasons, so the path we take after surgery will be different too. You have to find what works for you.

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xo.Lisha said...

Oh WoW! This looks absolutely amazing.. I cant wait to try it!!!!!

Audra DNP-s said...

What a great post! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

That's a great message. I have to remind myself there are some foods just not worth adding back into my eating. Crackers is one food that tends to lead me back down the old well worn path that I no longer want to follow. Thanks for the great post.

Nica said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Making your own personal choices is what makes YOU and all of us successful. I am finding out that certain foods (like crackers) are triggers for me and therefore cannot eat them. I don't miss the carbs or crave them either!

Catracks said...

Rice, chips or sweets never did a thing for me; but pasta, certain breads and every form a potato can take is a trigger. I am craving pasta as I type this.

This very issue is something I'm wrestling with right now. In reading the blogs of other sleevers, carbs even in moderation have caused them to stall.

I guess I have to find what's right for me too.

lifelessordinary said...

That looks simply amazing and delicious!! All your recipes do, and I cannot wait to be able to try them :) Thank you so much for doing this site, I've told a lot of people about it, as it's GREAT for those of us having WLS.

Andrea said...

These look wonderful! Love your blog, Shelly! I started reading to find appropriate goodies to make for my post-op sisters bridal shower. I'm hooked on Eggface, now! I am an aspiring athlete and foodie, and just love your healthy Veggie Filled recipe adaptations. Egg-cellent!

June Witt said...

I love your site. I had my surgery August 30th and I am still having problems with food. I can eat something once and it is fine. The next time I eat it I get very sick. Hope that passes soon.
June Witt

Julie said...

I love your website. The recipes are all great. I love the little quiches. All yum. And I like the vitamins you talk about. Thanks!