I grew up in (what I now realize was) a very interesting place. Very small town, close-knit (some would say clannish) families. Food influences from Chicago, midwest farm country, and eastern Kentucky. Food in the area was great! Good cooking was just normal and I’m always surprised to find people who don’t know how to cook anything unless it comes in a box with step-by-step instructions. My mom was a business owner (female business owner in the early 1970s!) who sometimes worked long hours, always worked Saturdays and tended to cook mainly for holidays; my dad worked a swing shift and drove 45 minutes one-way to his job in a steel mill. We ate out a lot on the weekends. One place my family went to very frequently when I was growing up was a place called Patterson’s where the Italian Beef sandwich was fantastic – that’s what I’ve been hungry for lately. For those of you who have not had the pleasure, a true Italian Beef sandwich is a marvel of flavor, juiciness, and engineering. It should be slow-cooked for hours and piled onto a roll that’s been soaked in the cooking juices and accompanied by a bowl of juice into which one dunks the sandwich between bites. So good. When I was a kid I ordered 1/2 of a beef with fries…gave my pepperoncini’s to my dad.
I occasionally become home-sick for the food back in my hometown, although the last time my husband and I went to visit (a trip which I refer to as our Midwestern Eating Tour) it was not nearly so good as I recall, but I did get a pretty good Italian Beef at a place in Chesterton where we ate with my brother-in-law and sister. I digress…
Today I’ve got a roast in the crock-pot (thanks to my daughter who picked it up at the store for me) and the whole house smells fantastic. Not Patterson’s fantastic, but pretty darn great. Of course these days, no bread for me. I plan to serve the meat and juices over some cauliflower rice and may even top the entire delicious mess with melted cheese. Not traditional, but definitely low carb. I hope I can slice it really, really thin.
I haven’t posted here in weeks because I needed a little time off. Things have been super-busy (in good ways) and I haven’t been thinking about “doing low carb” whatsoever. I’ve just been eating this way because it’s what I do – which is the point, really. I’ve been at this a long time and I can attest that eating real food that is low-carb is completely sustainable. Those folks who claim it is unsustainable are wrong. For me, when life is extra busy I may be eating lots of restaurant meals and such, but I can do it low-carb. Today I am blessed with a day off to create some real food that will sustain me for several days, and I’m thankful for that. But when time does not allow for that, there is always a bunless cheeseburger and side-salad with ranch dressing within shouting distance.