The Dukan diet offers (especially in the early phases) a limited amount of food products to choose from. Though you might enjoy that grilled chicken, steak or fish every day for the first few days, eventually the need for variety will come sooner or later.
Steaming and grilling are the obvious first choices. In many diets the first one is almost synonymous with the word healthy. Grilling on the other hand brings to mind barbeques (not really associated with a healthy lifestyle), however it does benefit from ridding the meat of its fat as long as you skip the sauces and stick to lean meat.
So, all the cooking fats like butter, lard or oil are out. Does it mean that your frying days are over (or have to wait till the diet ends)? Not in the slightest. With a few cooking tricks and the right set of pots and pans you can still enjoy things like stir-fries, fried eggs and other cooked and fried dishes.
Never have these wonderful inventions of the modern day been celebrated by meat lovers so much as on the Dukan diet. Any good Teflon non-stick pan will have you frying, chicken or steak, fat free in no time.
They used to be an expensive accessory of the health obsessed, while in fact these days they are almost more common than the old-fashioned frying pans. There is plenty of choice when it comes to size and features - usable in the oven, dishwashable, round or square, with heat indicators etc. At the same time the technology has been improved too and where Teflon has been criticized for causing health issues in the past it is no longer the case today.
Not to mention the fact that cleaning non-stick pans is fast and easy. Leave it to cool and then very often just water is enough to get rid of the dirt, followed by a quick wash if there is any grease left. If you do a lot of cooking you will definitely appreciate this time saving aspect of the non-stick pans.
If for some reason you want to use a normal pan, that's still OK. What Dr Dukan advises is to take 2-3 drops of oil and spread it on the pan using a paper-towel. This way you get enough grease for cooking, but can easily wipe out any excess.
A downside to this method is that you need to keep a closer eye on your cooking and preferably turn the food or at least move it around a bit so that it does not stick to the pan and/or get burnt.
However there is an even better way of applying that little bit of necessary fat. While you don't have perfect control over drops of oil there is a great alternative in the form of a spray can. With one spray delivering 1 calorie of oil in the form of a handy mist it is a great way to ensure you can minimize the amount of fat you take in while still enjoying juicy, well grilled or fried meat.
If you think all your food has to be dry think again, using cooking bags in the oven lets you keep the meat moist and juicy. When planning a roast get one of the bigger cooking bags and throw inside your chicken and if the phase allows some extra vegetables (you can always cook them to add flavour, just put them away on protein days). Onions and peppers are a great combination.
Let the meat sit inside the bag in an oven for most of its cooking time. Near the end open the bag (careful though, the released air will be very hot) by cutting across the top. To achieve a nice and crispy finish leave the opened bag with its contents to cook for a little bit longer.
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