Loving the BITE: Dr. Lim’s Rice Cakes

I was recently asked to give my thoughts on Dr. Lim’s Rice Cakes.  Have you heard of them?  Dr. Allen Lim is the world-class physiologist who’s worked with many professional cycling teams, the US Cycling Team, and who has recently co-written a cookbook entitled The Feed Zone Cookbook.  During his career, he has created many whole-food, homemade “savory” fuel options for his athletes to balance some of the sweet-carbohydrate, processed fuels often used.  I’ll admit, I haven’t tried this recipe yet myself, but I didn’t want to hold out on this post going into the cycling season.  Until I do, I’ll let you be the judge and taste-testers.

Recipe of the Week: Dr. Allen Lim’s Rice Cakes

(from http://lavamagazine.com/training/recipe-allen-lims-rice-cakes/)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups uncooked calrose or other medium-grain “sticky” rice
  • 1½ cups water
  • 8 ounces bacon
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons liquid amino acids or low-sodium soy sauce
  • brown sugar
  • salt and grated parmesan (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Combine rice and water in a rice cooker.
  2. While rice is cooking, chop up bacon before frying, then fry in a medium sauté pan. When crispy, drain off fat and soak up excess fat with paper towels.
  3. Beat the eggs in a small bowl and then scramble on high heat in the sauté pan. Don’t worry about overcooking the eggs as they’ll break up easily when mixed with the rice.
  4. In a large bowl or in the rice cooker bowl, combine the cooked rice, bacon, and scrambled eggs. Add liquid amino acids or soy sauce and sugar to taste. After mixing, press into an 8- or 9-inch square baking pan to about 1½-inch thickness. Top with more brown sugar, salt to taste, and grated parmesan, if desired.Cut and wrap individual cakes.

Makes about 10 rice cakes.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1 cake): 225 cal, 8g fat, 321 mg sodium, 30g carbs, 1g fiber, 9 g protein

Comments:

Most Loving the Bike readers know I’m all for whole foods.  Especially in Daily Nutrition.  When it can be used effectively in Training Nutrition and promote optimal results, I’m all for it there, too.   This certainly may be a good, whole-food, homemade option for many cyclists on long rides.  To maintain the most nutritious and highest quality ingredients, I would simply remind users to choose cage-free organic eggs, organic bacon without nitrites , and consider organic honey in place of brown sugar since it’s a whole-food that promotes health, contains antioxidants, and has been shown in studies to provide a good source of training energy.  As far as nutrient breakdown, the rice cakes look great for on-the-bike fueling.

I also see the high value in a savory food source, as opposed to a sweet one, on long rides.  You just get sick of all the sweet-tasting carbs.  But, since carbs are a very important source of fuel, you need them and I recommend them.   Rice mixed with salty ingredients may be a good answer for the carbohydrate needs of many athletes.  And, from what I’ve read, the cyclists he’s worked with love them.

On the flip side, anytime you mix intense cycling with foods, whether they are solid, gel, or liquid, there are always some concerns and issues of which to be aware.

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