Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Dining at Someone's House

Last night my husband and I were invited to dine at the home of one of his colleagues. I had never met the people before, so I had no idea what their eating habits are. For all I knew I could get served fried chicken with mashed potatoes loaded with butter, and some gooey, chocolate dessert with caramel sauce.

Worse, we weren't asked to be there until 7 pm, meaning that the earliest I'd probably see dinner was 8. Since I'm normally ravenous by 6, I knew that if I didn't take steps, I'd gorge myself on whatever fattening appetizers laid out.

So, I resorted to my tried and true strategy for controlling my eating (and calories consumed) when invited to dine in someones house. I ate a salad before leaving. It was a simple salad with just lettuce, cucumbers, red onion, and tomatoes with a lemon vinaigrette but it did the trick in taking the edge off my hunger.

As it was, I think I lucked out dinner-wise. Our hostess served hummus with pita bread for an appetizer. Hummus, is a great raw dip, but it does have a lot of calories. Also not good, the pita bread was not whole grain.

Still, hummus is a lot better than some of the nutritionally devoid, deep fried appetizers I've been served in the past. In any event, I just picked a little to be polite because I had already eaten my salad. Had I not eaten the salad, I'm sure I would have devoured a few hundred calories worth of hummus and pita bread.

Dinner was grilled salmon, grilled zucchini and corn on the cob, so I really lucked out there.

Dessert was coconut gelato, which was easy for me to resist. I took a couple of obliging spoonfuls so as to not hurt my hostess's feelings, then pushed the dish away.

Probably the only point at which my resistance failed was when the dish of chocolate covered almonds hit the table. Have I ever mentioned that I love both chocolate and nuts and that when you put the two together you get a confection that I just can't walk away from?

Well, I knew I was in trouble after indulging in my first piece of the candy, when I realized not only were they chocolate covered nuts, but they were really, really, good, gourmet chocolate covered nuts. When it became very apparent that I could easily eat the entire bowl of candy, I popped out of my seat and started helping the hostess clean up.

Scraping dishes and loading them into the dishwasher took my mind off those damn nuts until it was time to leave. Then I couldn't help but grab a couple of more on my way out the door.

I promised to reciprocate the hospitality, and will have this couple over to dinner some time soon.

I just hope they don't bring those damn nuts.


  1. Sorry I'm just leaving a comment, but my post today is about Dr. Kessler's interview in Nutrition Action Health letter. It just like Dr. Kessler says we go after foods that are multisensory. I really believe in Dr. Kessler's research. I hate plain chocolate, but if you add almonds, pecans or any kind of nut you better look out.

    I went back to work today and had a catered lunch, carrot cake from whole foods, and brownies. I know what you mean about eating at someone else's place or having your lunch catered. I did not eat the carrot cake or the brownies. I was proud of myself. I don't eat carrot cake, but I had to dig deep to let the brownies go by. So the comment was so long but I wanted to share.

  2. Thanks for the share. I'll take a look at your post.