"Losing Weight Without Compromise" or "How I ate well, drank wine and lost 15 pounds"
"Wine makes daily living easier, less hurried, with fewer tensions and more tolerance." - Benjamin Franklin
- Meal Two, Bechamel Chicken and Pepper with Pesto Zucchini (Prep time 25 minutes)
We love this creamy chicken dish and ate it multiple times over the course of our diet. The richness of the Bechamel sauce really gives you the impression that you are eating something that should not be eating when on a diet! The reality is that this dinner for two comes in at about 20 grams of carbs (24 grams with a glass of wine). By comparison, 2 pieces of bread with butter is 27 grams of carbs and a typical yogurt parfait (yogurt, granola and fruit) is around 31 grams. If you are really trying to trim carbs, you can cut the Bechamel sauce and bring the meal down to 12 grams of carbs. If you do so, then I would stick with the Sauvignon Blanc over the Chardonnay.
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 Bell Pepper (Red, Orange or Yellow)
1 half medium red onion
1 medium zucchini
3 tbsp of virgin olive oil
1 tbsp of white flour
2 tbsp of butter
3/4 cup of 1% milk
3 tbsp of Pesto (we like Costco but most basil-based pestos work)
2 tbsp of goat cheese
Salt and Pepper
- Cut chicken into thin strips (approx 1 in by 2 in)
- Chop pepper and onion and combine them with the chicken in a frying pan with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Mix the ingredients frequently whicle cooking at medium heat until the chicken is cooked through.
Preparation (White Sauce):
- In a small sauce pan place 2 tbsp of butter and then add 1 tbsp of flour once it melts, stirring until you make a paste.
- Take 3/4 cup of milk and warm slightly in the microwave for 30 seconds.
- Slowly stir in milk over the past and bring sauce to a boil. Add salt and pepper. Once it boils, reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes.
- Upon completion, immediately add the sauce to the chicken in the frying pan over low heat, mixing together to let the chicken combination absorb the Bechamel sauce for 3-4 minutes.
Note: We heat the milk because we find that it blends into the sauce better that way. Also, the white sauce should really have another tbsp of flour and be made with whole milk but this is a diet recipe. If you do not care about the extra 10 grams of carbs then go this way instead- it is great!
- Using a spiral tool or mandolin, slice the zucchini into "noodles".
- In a frying pan, add 1 tbsp of olive oil and then flash fry the zucchini noodles, stirring in the pesto, over 2 minutes.
Pairing with wine:
We have tried this dish with two different wines and enjoyed them immensely for different reasons. On our first time through, we paired the dish with Schug Sonoma Coast Chardonnay, while on our second pass we switched to the Schug Sauvignon Blanc. (Obviously other chardonnays and sauvignon blancs can work too).
With the Chardonnay, we loved how the richness of the creamy chicken was enhanced by the crisp style and juicy finish of the Schug Chardonnay. On the second occasion we went with the Sauvignon Blanc, which paired incredibly well with the zucchini/pesto combo of the dish. I also love Sauvignon Blanc’s cleansing effect on the palate when having creamy dishes. Try for yourself and see which one worked better for you!