Diet Places For Lunch - FiDi/North Beach/C-town?
Soon, I'm going to be starting Phase 1 of the South Beach Diet.
I'm wondering if anyone has any lunch menu suggestions or items for places located in the Financial District or North Beach/Chinatown.
For instance, in Chinatown: buying slices of roast pork at Hing Lung and steamed veggies at Mon Tiang.
Eventually I'll hit stage 2, so I plan on adding healthy portions of brown rice, some pasta, and some bread as well.
Any advice/hints/suggestions/warnings? :)
PS Thank God Golden Gate Bakery is closed for the month of August! The temptation for those Daan Tats is too extreme!
Chinese/Japanese = your best bet. Just explain what you want in terms of preparation and what items on the menu appeal to you and let them do it. For example, Chinese: what are the veg./protein items you want that day - then say they can only be steamed maybe with ginger/garlic/scallions, or stir fried in a small amount of oil, maybe served in broth. Japanese: Of course sashimi would be wonderful for you with spinach sesame salad, wakame salad, or pickled cabbage salad, miso soup with tofu and veg. Or Thai. I'm not a big Thai fan but it seems to me that most of their food is super healthy even without tailoring it specially to one diet or another - it's full of low fat dressings, low fat preparations and low calorie proteins and vegetables.
Julie's Kitchen (salad bars --$7.50/lb). They have a wide selection of simply prepared meats, including roast BBQ pork, roast turkey (right off the carcass), a couple of beef choices (usually sliced hanger steak and fillet mignon), and sometimes lamb rib chops. Today they had whole poached salmon, often they have seared ahi tuna, and they always have sushi. And of course they have all kinds of veggies. It's not super high quality meat, but it's not bad (as good or better than most Chinese lunch places), there's variety, and you can control your portions.
Two locations in the FiDi: one off the courtyard in the center of the block bounded by Market, First, Mission and Fremont and one at 250 Montgomery.
Some general advice:
Phase 1 of the South Beach Diet doesn't allow fatty meat (unlike Atkin's), so you might reconsider the Hing Lung Roast Pork (unless you have the pork loin portion of the piggy and refrain from eating any skin and fat). Also wouldn't count on eating BBQ Pork/char siu (too much sugar). Better option would be steamed chicken (preferably w/ the green onion & ginger "dip"), avoid the soy sauce chicken (sugar) and roast duck (fat). Don't really know if Hing Lung has a good steamed chicken, but I'm sure other places in Chinatown will.
Better off with stir-fries sans rice or noodles, but be careful of some of the fillers - don't eat any of the carrots, peas, or corn (baby corn). Ask if they will leave out the sugar.
I've asked at my fave Vietnamese place to substitute extra romaine leaves for rice and "wrap" my meat in that instead.
General advice (sorry, but I'm an East Bay CHer):
Dim Sum: stick with shrimp/fish/shellfish/tofu options, avoid anything wrapped in rice or wheat wrappers (though, I guess you could just eat the filling and leave the wrapper) - some things to enjoy are bean curd skin rolls, stuffed eggplant, stuffed tofu, stuffed mushrooms, stuffed peppers, black bean spare ribs, salt & pepper shrimp. Eat in moderation as there will still be more fat in most of these items than is really allowed in Phase 1.
Wish I could assist more with where to get the goods, but one place I do go to in SF Chinatown is Yong Kee on Jackson for fun (rice noodle sheets), steamed char siu bow, steamed lotus seed paste bow, and fried wonton - Obviously not allowed on Phase 1 or Phase 2 really, and possibly not even Phase 3.
Good luck. It's really not that bad a diet and after Phase 1 the carb cravings really do go away.