We put it under the lens 5 protagonists of the Christmas table. Choosing among those that can also enter (in controlled doses) in the menu of the Free Diet. Here they are.
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Crustaceans have lean meats and an excellent content of valuable proteins, moreover they are not particularly rich in cholesterol. Their problem is rather in digestibility, laborious due to the high connective tissue (the hard one) they contain, but in jelly or as a seafood salad they can easily find a place in the Christmas menu. When you buy them, check their freshness carefully (they are very perishable): the carapace must not have dark areas and the meat must have a pure white color without yellow-greenish shades. In the shelled product, dark spots on the trunk must not be highlighted, due to the rapid alteration of the intestinal system. Pay attention to the price: from 80 € per kilo up the lobster, a little less than 20 € prawns and scampi.
A diced boiled vegetable and a variable amount of mayonnaise are the basic ingredients of the Russian salad, one of the most caloric appetizers of the Christmas table (one hectogram brings about 300 calories). The number of eggs and the type of oils used for the preparation of the mayonnaise make the difference in terms of quality but the percentage of fats supplied is always high. You prefer preparations that are much richer in vegetables than in sauce, letting yourself be guided by sight (if you buy Russian salad at the deli counter) or by reading the ingredients (if you take it already packaged). Shopping ok: about 10 €Per kilo.
The calories are 350-400 per pound, but if you limit yourself to 20-30g (a good taste!) They drop to an acceptable level. Pay attention to the recipe, because it can be varied and imaginative. Check the ingredients on the packaged product or ask at the deli counter. If glutamate is almost always present in gelatin, it is on the choice of meats that you need to focus: the top is obtained with muscle and veal liver together with a little raw ham, flavored with liqueur (perfect armagnac) or Port wine. As for additives: the less there are, the better. The right price: from 20-30 € up to 50-60 € Per kilo.
It does not give too many calories (if you do not accompany it with butter). You can choose between that of the Atlantic (of the Salmo Salar species) and that of the Pacific (Onchoryncus): there is not much difference between the two types. When buying, instead, focus on the appearance of the slices, which should not have too many dark parts, and prefer the larger ones that correspond to the central part of the fillet, the least salty. Then prefer cold smoking. The cost of salmon can range from 20 to 70 € Per kilo.
From a nutritional point of view it cannot be said that it is a properly healthy food, either for the high content of salt and fat, both because it is rich in particular substances (purine bases) that the body struggles to eliminate. But so little is eaten that the main problem, if anything, is the cost. The important thing is to avoid substitutes (lumpfish or capelin roe), which are generally a concentrate of additives: stabilizers (E412), preservatives (E202, E211), acidifier (E330), dyes (E110, E151). If it has to be caviar, let it be the real one. The price: 100 € per hectare that of the farming village (excellent!), 400 € the Iranian one.
Free menu without exaggerating
> Yes to fish "In the Diet there are 2-3 portions of 150 g of fresh one every week," says Dr. Carla Lertola, dietician. "The quantity ok for cooked crustaceans and net of waste is 120 g, while for smoked salmon it is 60 g ».
> No to excess of sauces "Mayonnaise and similar products should not be demonized", reassures our expert. «Everything can be placed on the Christmas menu, even the Russian salad, or the prawn cocktail but taking care to eliminate the sauce, if it is too much. To limit fats and calories and facilitate digestion ».