I got in very late last night after a long vacation, which ended with a week in a rustic cabin in West Virginia. We were surrounded by wildlife: deer, bear, groundhogs, rabbits, hummingbirds, vultures, butterflies, etc. outside, and bugs and mice inside. We resorted to storing our food in the oven to keep it from being nibbled. One night we were awakened by a bat swooping over our bed catching insects. We shinned a flashlight on it to keep track of where it was until it eventually found a chink in the wall big enough to escape.

We were almost totally isolated from contact with the outside world—no phone, no cell phone, no Internet, no television, no radio. The closest grocery store was an 18 mile drive over West Virginia’s famous “country roads.” There was only one cafe in the park, so we improvised most of our meals in the small, sparsely equipped kitchen. One thing that worked well in this situation was my Quick Chili recipe from Carb Wars. It was simple enough to make without referring to the recipe and it didn’t require investing in an assortment of spices and other ingredients that would have to be discarded when we left. I made a double batch one night for dinner and we had it over Dreamfield’s* rotini (which I brought with me) for lunch later in the week. (The tortilla chips in the photo are also from Carb Wars.)

Quick Chili
1 pound ground beef
1 cup water or broth
1 (15-oz) can enchilada sauce
1 (15-oz) can diced tomatoes with juice
Salt, pepper to taste
Chili powder to taste, optional

Brown ground beef and drain off the fat. Put meat, water or broth,
enchilada sauce, and tomatoes in a large saucepan. Simmer for 30
minutes. Correct seasoning with salt and pepper and chili powder to taste.
Serve with shredded Cheddar cheese, chopped green onion or chives,
and sour cream or Crème Fraîche for topping.

Servings: 6
PER SERVING: Total Carb: 6.8g Fiber: 0.6g Net Carb: 6.2g

*Update: Dreamfield’s pasta is not gluten free. I now use Nasoya Pasta Zero or spaghetti squash.

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(c) 2010, Judy Barnes Baker

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Judy Barnes Baker

The working title for my first book was, “You’ll Never Know What You Are Missing.” It summed up my goal: to make eating for health synonymous with eating for pleasure. Once you discover the secret, you will find that the very best food for weight management, longevity, the treatment and prevention of disease, and over-all health and happiness is also the most sumptuous, satisfying, and indulgent way of eating the world has to offer. You are invited to the feast. Enjoy!
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Judy Barnes Baker
10 years ago

Trinkwasser: Very funny! I wonder if the bats would have been tasty?

13 years ago

When I make sauces like that I will have them with something like runner beans, purple sprouting broccoli, asparagus or bean sprouts depending on season as a pasta/rice replacement.

We have a lot of wildlife in the garden, but at the moment this includes a huge rat. Oh I know, I can make ratatouille. And guacamole with a real mole.