Friday, September 28, 2018

Foodie Friday ~ Product Review For the Awesome ActiFry

Alright, let's all admit it. Each of us has at least one weakness for fried goodness. It's okay to indulge once in awhile, but, no. It isn't something that should be consumed at every meal, or even on a daily basis.

My weakness is french fries. Yummy, crispy, mega-salty sticks of unrecognizable potatoes. And if you create a poutine with them...well. Let's just say if you make them right, we'll be friends for life. Unfortunately, due to a special diet I now have to be on (high protein, high calorie, low sodium), I have to seriously watch my intake of fried foods, especially salt, or it could spiral me back to how I felt months ago.

You can imagine my disappointment. And just because french fries are 'high calorie' doesn't mean they are acceptable forms of what my nutritionist reminds me of being acceptable 'high calorie' food (especially since they knock the salt reduction thing out of the park and there really isn't much protein in them). Yes, I could just bake them but what fun is there in that? That's when I started researching different mini-appliances that I could enjoy some of my fun foods, without hurting myself. That's when I found the ActiFry from T-Fal.

Now, this mighty little machine not only makes wonderful fries and other stuff we normally would fry up, it cooks a mountain of food with only about a tablespoon of oil (we use Extra Virgin Olive Oil). And it comes with it's own little green tablespoon so you can be sure to stay on track. Basically, you just get your favorite fries, add a sprinkle of your favorite spices then let it go for about 20 to 30 minutes. Even my fussy kids and husband were amazed with it. And that's not all it can do.

When we got our machine, I found a little instruction/cookbook in the box and was absolutely amazed at it's capabilities. Not only does it cook fries to ultimate yumminess, it can also create entire meals. So, it's a fryer and a sort of Crock Pot all in one little appliance. I am one of those consumers who buys a product based on whether it can do more than the main job it has to do, and the Actifry does just that.

I think I only paid about $35 or so on sale at Canadian Tire, but I'm sure that you can find it at most outlets that sell small appliances. I don't often do product reviews but when I'm excited about one, I shout it out. If you can't afford one right now, definitely put this one on your Birthday or Christmas list. It is so worth it.

As a bonus for today's post, I'm going to share a recipe from the Actifry book that we tried and all of my kids actually ate and had seconds! If you get a chance to try it out, be sure to comment here or let me know how things turned out.

Happy Eating!

Sweet and Saucy Pork Tenderloin

This recipe is supposed to serve 4, but with four hungry kids and a husband that's always hungry too, I often double portions for leftovers.

1 tablespoon of oil
1 lb pork tenderloin*, thinly sliced
1 thinly sliced onion
1 tablespoon of corn starch, divided
1 cup tomato sauce (I always use my homemade pasta sauce, but you can used canned)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp sesame oil
2 cups each shredded Napa/Chinese cabbage and thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms

1) Place onion and oil in the Actifry for about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, toss the pork  with 1/2 of the corn starch and add the coated meat to the Actifry for another 5 minutes. (You might have to use a wooden spoon to separate the slices of meat.)

2) Meanwhile, whisk the remaining cornstarch with the tomato sauce, stir in the tomato sauce brown sugar, red wine vinegar, soy cause, garlic, ginger and sesame oil.

3) Add the tomato sauce mixture, cabbage and mushrooms to the ActiFry pan. Cook for 10 minutes or until the pork is tender and the sauce is thickened.

*You can replace pork with beef, chicken, lamb or even tofu.

Protein - 28 g
Fat - 10 g
Carbs - 19 g
Sodium - 545 mg

For a lower sodium version, choose low sodium soy sauce and tomato sauce. This meal is also a fantastic source of Riboflavin, Thiamine, vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and Zinc.

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