Is Low Carb a healthy choice?

Is Low Carb a healthy choice?

How about this for a good report?

My Mom and Dad have been following this way of eating for about 2 months. My Mom is starting to have people tell her all the time how good she looks and noticing she’s lost weight.

As many know – we just did that Filet Mignon for Dad’s 73rd birthday. He is a heart patient.

His nurse called just this AM, all excited to give him his latest blood work results…

Total cholesterol: 142

LDL: 78

He has had a ‘Total’ number as high as 600 in the past. The nurse told him – “Whatever you are doing… keep doing it”!!

He told her – “it’s the diet”. He told her his son has a website and writes about it all the time. She asked for the website and was most interested in seeing it.

www.TheLowCarbBlog.com

Real life – real results.

Here is a follow-up I had after this original post on our Private FaceBook Group…

…a question I had PM’d to me…

…”Hi Tom. I was reading the post about your dad. My husband just found out he has a fatty liver and light cholesterol. I have been trying this woe for a couple months. I still have trouble with trying to figure out all the macros. I was wondering if you know of somewhere to learn more or find a plan to help me. I’m just not doing good. Thank you”…

First off – I am not a medical professional. Please consult your doctors and nurses. If you need to, find someone that is fluent in this way of eating. They are out there.

Second, Dad has been practicing a “Low Carb” protocol. This is similar to, but not the same as – a true Keto Diet. The main difference being, he isn’t tied to his Macros. One has to decide which side you are on, then make food and meal choices accordingly.

On the Keto side of things (which I am closer to currently)…

The macros are fairly simple. Roughly 70% of your intake in fats – 25% in proteins – 5% in carbs. Saying it is the easy part, actually hitting those numbers seems to give folks a little more issue.

Another MAJOR issue is, if you are new at this and not properly attuned to (meaning – not very good at) identifying “hidden” carbs, while on a high fat protocol… it will make for a very dangerous place for those with any type of health risk.

Adding (by mistake or otherwise) bad carbs to a high fat protocol – is VERY DANGEROUS for those “at risk”. This shouldn’t scare you. It should make you think. If carbs, sugars, flours and other “carby” things are such an issue, why have we been eating them in the FIRST PLACE??

SO – no matter what, BE DILIGENT!!

Keto can work for you – Very Low Carb can work for you. However, be smart. Study. Find the carbs. Eliminate THEM!!

There is no cheat – EVER. It is a lifestyle. Think of it as a skill set. You will get better and better as you go along.

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Amish Salad

Amish Salad

Going to a pot luck and want to stay Keto?? Here’s a great idea!

Recipe:

2 stalks of Broccoli Flower Canopies cut into florets
1/2 head of Cauliflower cut small (as shown)
3/4 C Mayo
3/4 C Sour Cream
1/4 C Truvia (a bit more maybe? – or equal
Low Carb / Keto Sweetener of your choice)
1/2 t Kosher Salt
8 oz Bacon – Cooked, chopped… BTW – anything worth adding 4 slices of bacon – is worth 5 slices!!
1 C Shredded Cheddar

Mix well – let come together overnight. Creamy, DELISH!! This goes great with BBQ!!

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2 Suggestions Have Made a Difference for Me


2 Suggestions have made a difference for me.

1. I Google menus and plan ahead (when I can) before I go out to eat. This way, I’m not surprised or sad when I log my meals.

I learned the hard way. Someone treated me to a meal at the Cheesecake Factory for my birthday. It was an eye-opener as I was searching MFP (MyFitnessPal) for something decent to order while the waiter stood there. I chose so badly. It threw me out of ketosis. I learned a lesson.

2. For my own benefit, I took Dr. Eric Westman’s list (page 4) and wrote what the carb count is for every vegetable on it, based on serving size.

Page 4 is very similar to the “What Can I Eat?” list I’ve seen posted. Dr. Westman runs the Lifestyle Clinic at Duke University. I first learned about the Ketogenic WOE while watching his videos on YouTube and then attending a couple of his support group meetings in Durham, NC. Let me say there are many ways to do a Keto Diet. Some doctors have their own protocols.

Knowing the vegetable carb counts (and the suggested serving sizes) helped me decide which vegetables I will “spend” my carb grams on and which ones aren’t worth it. (It will be different for each of us!)

Knowing this can help you plan meals (which I began planning by the MONTH… sounds daunting, but it can be done), buy groceries, and eat out with more confidence.

Make Keto simple and it will always be your friend and never let you down. I hope someone finds this helpful. – Sandra H. Rosser

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Mom’s Low Carb Taco Soup

Mom’s Low Carb Taco Soup

So – before my Mom and Dad decided a Low Carb lifestyle would be healthier for them, my mother’s kitchen was a fairly safe place for me. Everything in there was “off-limits” for me – so my defenses were pretty well evolved. Now, however, this can be a DANGEROUS PLACE.

This soup is a perfect example. Imagine being able to walk through you mom’s kitchen and grab a bite of something delicious on the stove that is actually Low Carb (or Keto)… Uh oh – this is bad. Very bad for me!! The soup is sooooo good!!

Mom’s Low Carb Taco Soup recipe:

2lb. Pork Sausage browned (save the drippings)
4 C Chicken broth
2 T of Taco Seasoning (you could easily sub in Garlic, Onion, Cumin, etc for lower count)
2 8oz pkgs of Cream Cheese
2 10 oz cans of Rotel Tomatoes (your heat level preference)

Mix, heat and serve with garnish of sharp cheddar shredded.

Enjoy!!

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Real Low Carb Ice Cream

Real Low Carb Ice Cream

I’ve had the same experience as many others. I have never gotten any of those “internet shake – shake – shake” recipes to work. I’ve never gotten it to turn into anything I would call “ice cream”. I’ve tried everything – even an INDUSTRIAL SHAKER!!

However, I did recently make REAL, VERY LOW CARB Vanilla ice cream using a small Krups ice cream maker. It is LEGIT!!

The way this method works – generally… The cylinder is very cold and stored in a freezer.

The mixture is made (by whatever process for the particular ice cream recipe)… cooled and put in the very cold cylinder to be stirred until it changes consistency.

Ice Cream Recipe:
2 eggs
1 C Light Cream (I used Food Lion Light Cream – Listed at 9 gr carb per cup)
2 C Heavy Whipping Cream (I used Market Pantry – listed as “0” carb)
1/2 C Swerve
2 t Vanilla

I warmed the light cream on the stove top (NOT TO A BOIL). While this was getting started I beat the eggs and Swerve together WELL (hand mixer). Once beaten I added to the Light Cream and let heat a little longer. Do not allow to boil. Once these ingredients are mixed and slightly creamier… remove from heat, add Heavy Whipping Cream and Vanilla. Chill in fridge until very cold (several hours). Do not freeze this mixture. Do not use if it has turned to a semi-solid.

I removed the cooling cylinder from the deep freeze, assembled the ice cream maker, plugged it in and turned it on immediately. Once on and running I poured the ice cream mixture in through the pour opening (very easy).

Within several minutes I noticed changes – in 8-10 minutes, it starts developing some lumps. In about 20 minutes it was a pretty firm “home-made” ice cream consistency. It was VERY GOOD.


One could freeze this mixture for an additional several hours to tighten it up some more. I believe I could let it go another 8-10 minutes and gotten a different result – though it was super good and what I remember from my Grandma’s house over July 4th as a child.

You will LOVE THIS!!

Enjoy!!

(P.S. my next version will be Mint Chocolate Chip)

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Salted Chocolate Bombs

Salted Chocolate Bombs

3 1/2 T Creamy Sunflower Butter
3 T Shredded Coconut (unsweetened)
1 1/2 T Truvia
1 T Cocoa (unsweetened)
3 T Salted butter (we use Kerry Gold)
3 T Coconut oil
3 T Salt & Vinegar Almonds

I put the shredded Coconut and the Salt & Vinegar Almonds in a food processor for a few seconds. I like them to have texture but not be so big.

I heat the butter and Sunflower butter just a little so it all mixes well. I then mix everything together well.

I originally started using those little plastic disposable shot glasses. However, lately I’ve been using mini-muffin liners I put about 1 Tsp. in the bottom of each cup. Obviously, they are a little on the small side – but there is more in the batch and you don’t have to feel terrible if you eat more than 1!!

I put them in the freezer for a couple of hours and BOOM – there it is.

Once they come out of the freezer – they push right out of the liner, then you can store them in the fridge. They are just a little bigger than a mint patty and THEY ARE PACKED WITH FLAVOR.

These are really good. A perfect craving fix. They have a pretty low carb count (if you follow this recipe) and can keep you well on plan.

I don’t keep them around because I need more fat. I make them because they are delicious!!

Enjoy!!

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9 ways to beat the “Dreaded Stall”


9 ways to beat the “Dreaded Stall”

1) Find Hidden Carbohydrates – Carbs can go unnoticed in vegetables, nuts, and certain meat products and dairy. Read Labels – do research.

2) Verify Your Calorie Intake – Making sure you’re in a calorie deficit can be important. This allows you to lose weight. You can use a keto calculator to help you figure out your macros (this means – your “numbers”).

3) Do you have a Food Sensitivity – Some people find themselves following their daily macros perfectly, but still seem to hit a stall. This might mean they have sensitivity to certain types of food. For instance, my wife doesn’t do well with any kind of processed meat.

4) Stay Consistent – It can take a period of time for your body to become keto-adapted, a cheat day can take a long time to recover from. By the time you are back in ketosis, a week may have passed – a week of no fat burning.

5) Limit Protein Intake – Excess protein is not a good idea when you’re in ketosis. The body prefers to use glucose as it’s primary form of fuel, and that’s exactly what we don’t want it to do. In some cases, the liver can actually extract glucose from protein (or even muscle, in extreme cases) as well. If there is a protein excess, this can happen. Don’t let this be an option. Force it to burn fat.

6) Don’t Eat Too Little or Exercise Too Much – The body will slow itself down in response to a lack of food or excessive amounts of exercise to conserve itself. Studies show that if you do aerobic exercise for more than 1 hour a day, your metabolic rate can drop by as much as 15%.

In addition, eating too little can have the same effect.

P.S. If you aren’t exercising at all – get up and move around a little. Try to get in 30-35 min. a day, even if it’s just a walk around the house – or outside.

7) Are You Eating Too Often – Snacking when you’re hungry is great, but it can cause a setback. My personal advice? I love snack foods. I don’t condemn it like some. However, replace a meal setting with a snack plan. Keep a few small, GOOD choices around in case you have a “moment” during the day. For instance – if some kind of “bad food” snack opportunity presents itself… replace it with a good Keto (or Low Carb) choice, hopefully one you have close at hand. Plan ahead and be prepared.

8) Try Fat Fasting – Quick version? If you are stalled, UP THE FAT INTAKE. For 3-4 days cut your calorie intake down. Try around 1200 calories per day. Up your fat intake percentage. Try to hit 80% or more from fatty foods. Things like mayo, bacon, pork, Avocado, etc, etc… Break your meal times up and eat smaller portions during this effort.

Remember, this is not your regular routine – this is a STALL BUSTER ROUTINE.

Almost every single time the “stall debate” comes up someone will advise – carb cycling, a cheat day, a cheat meal or whatever. These are all well intentioned responses. DON’T DO IT!! Sheesh.

How do you cheat on a lifestyle?? Better yet – WHY?? This food is better. The long term health benefits are MAGNIFICENT. This isn’t some kind of prison sentence – it is a choice for freedom from BAD HEALTH.

9) Limit Alcohol Consumption – You already know what I’m going to say. Figure it out. Alcohol consumption, even smaller amounts can cause a stall. Why? It is interrupting the liver’s ability to process the various forms of fuel you need. The liver is dealing with the alcohol first. Simple. No need to lose the booze forever. Just push the pause button until you are at goal – then only in MODERATION. Always in moderation.

Keep on Ketoing on!!

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SunButter Fudge

SunButter Fudge

Here is the recipe…

1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened

1 C Sunflower Butter


1 C butter, softened (we used Kerry Gold)


1/2 C powdered artificial sweetener (we used 1/4 C of Truvia and some Torani S.F. Salted Caramel Syrup)


1/2 t Vanilla extract

In a microwaveable-safe bowl, heat the cream cheese, nut butter and butter until the butter is melted. Whisk this mixture well. Blend in the artificial sweetener and Vanilla.
Pour the fudge mixture into an 8×8 or 9×9 inch pan, smooth the top, cover and refrigerate until firm.

Slice into one inch squares and store in the refrigerator.

Keep on Ketoing on!!

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Twice Baked Cauliflower Mashers

Twice Baked Cauliflower Mashers

For this I went a little bit of a “non-traditional” route…

I did the Cauliflower as a stir fried Riced Cauliflower first. This will take a lot of that moisture out of the Cauliflower. Once I got the moisture out, my thought was to then go back and add in the things for taste and body.

I started with a whole fresh head of Cauliflower. I saved two thick steaks out of the middle for a blackened recipe tomorrow. I riced the rest in a small food processor. I stir fried it in some Kerry Gold butter, Salt, Pepper and a little Garlic Powder. I also used just a little Rice Vinegar in the stir fry. I used just enough to start muting the heavy fresh Cauliflower notes.


Once I started getting the browned, fried starts – I took it off and put it in a deep mixing bowl. I added about 4 oz softened Cream Cheese, 2-3 oz Mozzarella, some Kerry Gold butter and 2 T (heaping) of Mayo in… I used a stick blender to get this to the right consistency. Keep working it until you get a consistency you like.

I baked it for 20 min @ 350* and broiled it for 2 min at the end. It gave the peaks a nice browning and some texture.

I was shooting for something tasty, with a better texture… more like a twice baked masher should be… not a mushy runny Fauxtato mixture. This was a HUGE WIN.

This is BY FAR my favorite Mashed Cauliflower recipe (for now).

(My own creation – BTW)

Keto wisely my friends!!

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Get your Taco Bell crave on – for 2 bucks!!

Get your Taco Bell crave on – for 2 bucks!!

I ordered 2 salad sides, 2 meat sides (beef), 1 cheese side, 1 Guacamole side and then I changed my mind and asked for a Sour Cream side at the end (she didn’t charge me for that).

For a drink I ordered a water (since I’ve been struggling to get enough water lately).

I put several packets of Mild sauce on there – pretty darned good!!

Total? $2.08


This is just how it worked out for me. I’m sharing this example so you can see what is possible – even when eating out. Fast food or otherwise.  

Keto wisely my friends!!

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Keto Chicken Pot Pie

Keto Chicken Pot Pie

We decided to make a Keto Chicken Pot pie. Since we haven’t found much in the way of good recipes – I decided to “wing it”. I just started going with what I thought would work. Once I was done, I had to go sit down and write it out immediately (for fear I would forget).

Ingredients:

Small handful of frozen onions (3-4 T)
1/2 T minced Garlic

2 T Butter
2 full ribs Celery

3 oz canned Mushrooms
1/2 bag of Spinach (add some EVOO)
1 1/2 cooked Chicken breast (from a BBQ)
8 oz Mozzarella
8 oz Cream Cheese
2 C Chicken stock
1 t Xanthan gum

1 batch Fat Head Pizza crust. I added some liquid sweetener (your choice) and some Garlic to the dough. It is Pot Pie – right??

Instructions:

I checked the volume I would need to meet to completely fill my 3 Corningware dishes for the baking process (using water). Lucky too – I had an idea where I had to be for volume in the pan and I still just barely had enough.

First, I sweated off the Onion, Garlic, and Celery in butter to get things started. Once the were headed to the right place, I tossed in the Spinach and Mushrooms (side note – there was some wonderfully darkened, seasoned skin on one of the breasts. I chopped it up finely with scissors and added it with the Spinach) with a little Olive oil so they would cook down nicely. As the Spinach started to wilt I added the Chicken (I had cubed it).

As the ingredients started to gain some heat I added half the Mozzarella (shredded), half the Cream Cheese (thin chunks), 1 C (or half) of the Chicken stock and sprinkled in the Xanthan gum… once this was melted I added what was left and let it come together. I did not let it get to a boil. In fact, once everything was melted, I started working the temp down quite a bit until it was near a very low simmer. It thickened up nicely.

Just perfect.

I put the filling aside and made a normal batch of Fat Head Pizza dough – except as noted above, I added sweetener and Garlic. It’s Pot Pie, not Pizza, right? I split the dough in half so it was easier to work. I put the dough between 2 sheets of parchment I had given a quick shot of cooking spray. I gently turned the “pot” over on the dough, cut out the shape leaving about 1/2” extra around the out side edge. Once I completed one “top pastry”, I set it aside – still on the bottom piece of parchment it was on. I got another piece of parchment, gave it a quick shot of cooking spray and worked the next piece of dough down… and so on.

Once the dough was ready – 3 pieces on individual papers, I went ahead and filled the dishes. It was perfectly portioned. I prepared an eggwash of 1 egg and some light cream (beaten) for the last 8-9 minutes of cooking. I put a bit of this eggwash around the lip of the dish and then turned the dough over and carefully worked it into place. It went very easy. I did the same for the rest. I put just a light dusting of Paprika on and into the oven at 375 F for 18-19 minutes.

I advise keeping a close eye on them. At about the 9-10 minute mark I took them out, put an egg wash on them, turned them around and put them back in for the finale. Mine did not go the full time – I kept a close eye on it at the end.

Enjoy!!

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Low Carb Hot Dog on a Stick – OH MY!!

Low Carb Hot Dog on a Stick – OH MY!!

It’s the 4th of July and I was thinking about something Low Carb and in keeping with the holiday and our American traditions. What could be more American than a Hot Dog on a Stick??

For this recipe I used Oscar Mayer Bun length Angus Beef Hot Dogs. Reportedly, they are less than >1 net gram of carbs per Dog.

The “bun” a is version of the Fat Head Pizza crust with a few minor adjustments.

Check out my Fat Head Blog post here > TheLowCarbBlog.com/2017/07/03/fat-head-pizza/ .

The adjustments are as follows:

1) I went with a sweet spice profile – which worked out REALLY WELL. I put 2-3 drops of QuickSweet in with the beaten egg and then a couple of drops in the actual dough as I was mixing it at the 1 min mark.

2) I added some Garlic powder, Onion powder and Paprika to the dough mix.

3) When forming the dough (be sure and follow the logic I laid out in the Pizza post), I did it in half batches and formed a long “ribbon” loaf, then worked it into a pretty symmetrical piece. Use two pieces of parchment, a couple of shots of cooking spray – wet hands, etc, etc, etc…

Once I had it laid out as shown, I rolled each dog up carefully. Once it was fully encased, I cut the dough and moved the finished dog over to a cooking sheet lined with parchment paper. I repeated this process until I had 7 dogs done. With a little effort I might have gotten all eight in the batch. Oh well.

I measured the sticks – cut them and soaked them in water (to prevent burning) for a few minutes before inserting them into the dog. Once I had them to this point – I rolled the dogs up in the dough.

I “docked” the dough before rolling the dogs and added a few more holes after they were set into place on the cooking sheet.

I put them in the oven at 400F with the timer set for 15 min. With about 6-7 minutes left to go, I took them out and put a quick egg wash on them. The wash was 1 whole egg and a little light cream (HWC would work too) – well beaten. I put them back in the oven to finish up. I kept a close eye on them toward the end and reset the timer once. I was looking for just the right color. Probably about 18-19 min. total cooking time.

I took them out – let them rest a minute. Dusted them with just a little more Paprika for color and Oh MY GOODNESS!! These things were RIDICULOUSLY GOOD. I had a couple of sauces ready – none needed. They were PERFECT just the way you see them.

The sides were Avocado Lime Angel eggs (the other Avocado egg!!) and a Bacon Jalapeno Cream Cheese ball. I’ll cover these two recipes soon. I was feeling a little light on my fat intake lately. Ha HA!! Problem solved.

If you like this recipe – share it with your friends!! Enjoy!!

Posted in Breads, Entrees, Snacks, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fat Head Pizza

Fat Head Pizza

For this pie – I did a BBQ / Smoked Pork rendition. I had some leftover Homemade BBQ sauce and some Smoked Pulled Pork I had just done…

I mixed what BBQ I had left with some Rao’s Red sauce, added some Garlic, Basil and Oregano to the sauce – BOOM. BBQ Pizza Sauce. Next topping was some Spinach… then the Smoked Pork. I used a mix of three cheeses – Mozzarella, thick grated Parmesan and a bit of Fontina Fontal (a delicious white melty cheese). Just UNREAL FLAVOR. I painted the crust with a pass of Garlic butter right before the final cook off.

Crust Ingredients:

1 3/4 C shredded mozzarella
3/4 C almond flour (or 1/4 C Coconut flour??)
2 T cream cheese
1 egg – beaten
Pinch salt (or to taste)
Garlic powder to taste (or other spice profiles)

Instructions:

Cube up the cream cheese before melting with the Mozzarella. Mix both Cheeses. Microwave for 1 min, mix well. Add Almond flour, stir then microwave on HIGH for another 30 seconds.

Add Egg, Salt, Rosemary or other flavorings – mix gently.

Quick tip: Use Parchment both top and bottom when forming it. A tiny shot of cooking spray on the paper (both pieces – won’t hurt).

Place in between 2 pieces of parchment paper and work into a circular pizza shape.

Remove the top sheet of parchment paper.

If the mixture becomes difficult to work with, pop it back in the microwave for 10-20 seconds to soften again. Not too long or you cook the egg.

Make fork holes all over the pizza base to ensure it cooks evenly.

Slide the baking paper/parchment with crust, onto a cookie tray and bake at 425F for 12-15 minutes, or until brown.

To make the base crispy and sturdy, flip the crust over (onto baking paper/parchment) once the top has browned.

Once cooked, remove from the oven and add all the toppings you like. Make sure any meat is already cooked as this time it goes back into the oven just to heat up the toppings and melt the cheese. Bake again at 425F for 5 minutes.

Options:

Rosemary, Garlic or other spice profiles optional. I’ve done Red Neck Tacos – and even Corned Dogs with this recipe!! Get creative!!

Tom’s additional tips:

If you like a thinner Pizza – make it that way in the forming process (under
sprayed paper). Take care – thin crust will carry less in toppings well, be judicious.

If you like a crispier pie… cook on a plain cooking sheet (pan) – NOT A STONE!! I use my stone for presentation only. Before you add toppings, cook on one side – in the oven for 5-7 minutes… just until it just starts to get a tiny bit brown. Take it out and flip it over. Go
another 5-7 minutes.

Take it out and add toppings – cook a few more minutes. Basically long enough for the cheese to melt. 5 min at 425F.

If you are going to make a smaller pizza (when I make a batch – I usually split the dough in half and save one for later) cook one – freeze the other.

Cook the one for freezing about  5 min per side, take out, let cool and put in a Ziploc bag in the freezer. It won’t last long. You will remember where you put it.

BTW – if you like it crispier, the smaller size is much easier to flip and handle. It is not so awkward.

Good news… your next Low Carb Pizza will be done in like 5 minutes!!

(left overs – the next day. A wonderful college breakfast!!)

Extras:

Fat Head pastry can also be made by replacing the almond meal/flour with 1/4 cup (4 tbsp) coconut flour.

If you enjoy this recipe – share it with others.

Posted in Breads, Entrees, Recipes, Smoked Stuff, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

My favorite Caesar Dressing

My favorite Caesar Dressing

I am always doing some kind of Low Carb / Keto recipe research or adaptation. I have a bunch of “go to” dressings and sauces I have used for years. All VLC (Very Low Carb) – of course. However, I have never gotten around to doing a Caesar Dressing. My wife loves the stuff – good, bad or ugly. She just loves it. How could I have been such an oaf to pass up making her favorite thing. How could I have missed this?

I ran across a Caesar Recipe on FaceBook that looked interesting. Some kind of “shake up” in a pint jar routine. Fair enough. Time to right some past wrongs.

I did it. It went OK. She loved it. It was very yellow – and had A LOT OF BANG to it. Very powerful. She was soooooo happy. I was not happy – I gave it a 5 out of 10. Maaaaaybe not – maybe a 3.

Have you ever gotten to some point in a recipe and you realize you’ve been hacked by some dude in Islamabad, Pakistan typing stuff on the internet and he’s never cooked so much as a bean?

Well – I got to that place on this one. All of the ingredients they showed would not fit in the jar – as illustrated. It was not possible. Further, my past experience making and creating dressings and sauces told me someone can’t tell the difference between a “big T” and a “little t” in English  cooking vernacular. This spice profile was waaaaaaay off.

I realized I would have to make my own. I wanted a creamy, slightly sweet, gentle Caesar that would be so enticing – so inviting, it would always leave you wanting more. Here’s where I went…

I trimmed a little here – added some Sour Cream, cut the MONSTROUS SPICE profile down to something that wouldn’t burn your eyes, added a Low Carb sweetener and PLENTY OF PARMESAN.

If someone tells you there is too much Parmesan in here – UNFRIEND THEM IMMEDIATELY. No one needs that kind of negativity in their life!!

Tom’s Caesar Dressing

1/2 C Mayo
1/2 C Parmesan (grated, bottled)
1/2 C Olive Oil
1/2 C Sour Cream
1 t Pepper (medium grind preferred)
1/2 t Salt (Kosher)
2 t Garlic (minced)
2 t Mustard (I have used both yellow and ground dark)
2 T Lemon
4 drops QuickSweet (or 2-2 1/2 t Truvia – or 4 t Stevia.  Relax – use what you like)

Mix all well – I put it in a quart jar. It didn’t fill it up. Let it steep a day (or not). When I made the Caesar I chopped the Romaine quick, tossed it well in some of this dressing – maybe 3-4 T per serving.

When I had plated it I added a few more shakes of black pepper and more shaved Parmesan. Voila’ – plated with LOVE!!

I think I NAILED IT. I don’t even like Caesar. This is my favorite Caesar and maybe one of my favorite dressings – EVER!!

P.S. Some sliced, grilled Chicken on this wouldn’t hurt a THING. Enjoy!!

Posted in Entrees, Salads, Sauces and Dressings | Leave a comment

Low Carb Breakfast Casserole

Low Carb Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients:

6-8 slices of Low Carb Bread (I had a few slices from the Great Low Carb Bread Co. left in my freezer. It was time to clean it out. Only about 4 net grams for this ingredient). One could easily use some of The Best Low Carb Bread – EVER as the base for this. This  adaptation would make this recipe ENTIRELY Keto friendly.

1/2 C Melted butter (1 stick)
2 C Half & Half (or Heavy Cream)
1/2 t Salt
1/2 t Dry Mustard
5 eggs
1 package Sausage (I used a Mild Sage)
8 oz Cheddar Cheese
4 oz canned Mushrooms

Directions:

Brown the Sausage – reserve, and for HEAVEN’S SAKE!! SAVE THE GREASE!! You can make gravy and pour it over my Diet 7-up Biscuits or some Keto Bread!! Melt butter – soak bread (or tear it up into pieces) on bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish. Beat eggs – add all other ingredients and mix well. Add most of the Cheese – except maybe 1-2 oz. Add everything over the first layer. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.

Bake at 325* for 1 hour. Remove – let rest for 10 min… top with remaining cheese, a dusting of Paprika and Pepper (if you like).

Enjoy!!

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Tom’s Low Carb Blue Cheese

Tom’s Low Carb Blue Cheese

Nothing like  a snack time with a few fluffy, crunchy Hot-N-Spicy Pork Rinds with a side of Blue Cheese for dipping!!

This Blue Cheese has been a staple of mine for a few years. I was aiming for something very creamy and a little sweet (and very Low Carb) to go with Buffalo Chicken strips. This is what I came up with.

Tom’s Low Carb Blue Cheese Recipe:

1 C Mayo
1 C Sour Cream
3 Oz Blue Cheese
3 t Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 t Black Pepper
1/2 t Garlic Powder
3-4 drops liquid sucralose

Mix all ingredients well EXCEPT BLUE CHEESE – fold it in gently at the end.

ENJOY!!

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The Best Low Carb Bread – EVER!!

The Best Low Carb Bread – EVER!!

This gem of a meal was a couple of slices of Low Carb Almond Bread seared off in a buttered skillet. A smear of our Low Carb Creamy Horsey Sauce topped off with an egg, some Pepper and Scallions. This is very quick, easy and 5 star TASTY!!

I had the Bread made up and in a Tupperware container in the fridge. I did the egg in the microwave. The Horsey sauce was made a couple of days ago (and very quick – even then). Searing the bread off in butter took longer than anything (maybe a minute??). The whole process was done in less than 5 minutes.

A while back several of us were debating the merits of “cheat meals”, “cheat days” and “carb cycling”… I guess I got sucked into the wrong train of thought. I am wholly against such ideas. There are always other ways to go about results. I guess it boils down to one simple idea. We were asking the wrong question…

Why would I ever want to go back? Why would I want to eat anything but the way I do? In the event there is something outside my current set of standards – there is most often a creative way to get there.

I have tried a lot of Low Carb breads, tortillas, recipes and substitutes. I have a few very good – “Go to” Low Carb / Keto “bread” recipes. However, this is FAR AND AWAY the best Low Carb Bread – EVER!

The Best Low Carb Bread – EVER

Best Bread Recipe

Ingredients:

1/2 C Melted Butter
2 T Coconut Oil
7 eggs (I used 8 – a few were small. They were our farm eggs)
1 t Baking Powder
2 C Almond Flour
1/2 t Xanthan gum
1/2 t Salt
6 drops QuickSweet

The above is a great version. It works really good for searing or in another recipe. However…

I highly encourage some creativity with a flavor profile for your bread and going all the way with it.

For instance – Garlic powder, Rosemary and Thyme?? Or Cheddar…

Or Cinnamon, Pumpkin Spice and QuickSweet.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350*

Beat Eggs on high a full minute (or more?), add Coconut oil and melted butter – beat another minute.

Add additional ingredients and 1/2 the Almond flour – continue beating – add last half of the Almond flour. Continue beating. It will be thick.

Scrape into loaf pan lined with parchment paper. A quick shot of cooking spray on the bottom and sides won’t hurt a thing either.

Bake 50 – 60 minutes. I have found 45 minutes wasn’t even close to enough bake time. Mine turns out done and a nice medium color at 55 minutes.


Let stand a few minutes. Carefully pull parchment sides up. Gently remove loaf – it should come out with little coaxing. Let cool – cut with bread knife. It will be soft, moist, warm and have an INCREDIBLE bread texture. Enjoy.

I have been able to store in Tupperware for a few days while using it – but I have no clue how long it will last. Because it never makes it long enough to find out. It’s usually gone in a few days.


Keto wisely my friends!!

Posted in Breads, Breakfast, Recipes | 1 Comment

Tom’s Ranch Dressing

Tom’s Ranch Dressing

Here was a lunch – WOWSERS!!

A bed of Baby Spinach with homemade Low Carb Ranch, Blue Cheese crumbles, some sliced Radishes and Bacon. Who doesn’t like bacon – right?? All this with a side of warm, thinly sliced Low Carb Bread smothered in butter and a dusting of dill. Oh my.

Tom’s Ranch Dressing

1 C Mayo
1/2 C Sour Cream
1/2 oz. Sugar Free Vanilla Syrup
1 oz. Apple Cider Vinegar
2 oz. Heavy Cream (or unsweetened Almond Milk)
1 t Dill
1/2 t Thyme
1/2 t Onion
1/2 t Garlic Powder
1 t Parsley
3 drops liquid sucralose

Mix well – let steep one day…

Be sure to check out our post for The Best Low Carb Bread – EVER…

If you enjoy this recipe – share it with others. 

Thanks – Tom

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Aunt Meg’s Steak and Eggs

Aunt Meg’s Steak and Eggs

In an homage to Aunt Meg and Bill Paxton from the movie Twister, this is a T-Bone and eggs for breakfast in ULTIMATE Keto and Low Carb fashion. You can eat this way, right?!? So why not? It is so quick, easy and awesome.

Here are the details…

I started with pretty decent cut of T-Bone. I let it age a few days in the fridge.

I took it out – lightly brushed it with Olive Oil (both sides). I put a slight dusting of Garlic powder – Kosher salt and Pepper to taste (both sides).

I preheated the grill to near high (on my grill). I grilled this steak for 9 min total – 5 min. on the first side and 4 min. on the second (move them 45 degrees 1/2 way thru each side makes those nice sear marks).

This grill time gave me a really nice medium to medium/rare for this cut of meat. Once it comes off – let it rest under a cover for several minutes. While it’s resting make the eggs.

Two eggs in butter in the skillet and right at the end put a bit of water in a cover to firm up the tops… same seasoning – Garlic, Salt, Pepper (LIGHT).

I started in a very civilized fashion – cutting it with a knife (about twice)… then realized it would just pull apart in my fingers. I didn’t even need a fork.

This T-Bone tasted like meat flavored butter!! 😀 Perfect medium/rare…

It wasn’t long before I just picked it up and went to gnawing at it – no remorse…

Comments??  Too much egg, right??

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Quickie Bread – a real bread alternative

Quickie Bread – a real bread alternative

This was Quickie Bread, butter, a Low Carb Horsey sauce with some eggs and cheese on top we had for breakfast… Quick, easy – delicious.

Here is the recipe for the Quickie Bread – it’s a bit of a take-off from the 3 minute Chocolate Cake. This is a VERY versatile and usable bread alternative.

Quickie Bread

3 T Almond Flour
1 egg (beaten)
1/4 t Baking Powder
1 1/2 T Butter (melted)

2 Drops Quick Sweet (liquid sucralose)
Pinch of salt

Melt the butter – then mix all wet ingredients. Mix dry ingredients and mix them well. Add the dry to the wet mixture and mix well again. I like to do all this in a separate bowl and then pour in the one I’m using to Microwave in. Quick tip – smooth the top of the batter a bit (if it isn’t already) – if it is uneven, once it gets cooking, it only gets more so. No need to add additional cooking spray. There is plenty of butter in it and it will come right out.

Wrap bowl in a cooking wrap and vent the top. Set microwave for 1:30 – One minute and thirty seconds. Once it is done…

Unwrap, turn over and give a gentle tap – it should come right out. It might need a little coaxing. I like to let it rest and start to get a little firm. This might take a couple of minutes.

For this meal I then cut the bun in half with a bread knife and gave it a quick sear in some butter on a skillet. WOW!!

There are NUMEROUS of different variations you can do with this recipe. For instance, swap the sweet for more salt, Garlic and add some Cheddar Cheese – you’ve got Red Lobster biscuits!!

Be creative – and enjoy!!

 

 

 

 

Posted in Breads, Breakfast, Recipes | 1 Comment

Avocado Eggs

Avocado Eggs

We’ve been making Avocado Eggs for years. They are a great Low Carb / Keto breakfast.

I’m sure you will find a number of different renditions for them out there – this is ours.

Ingredients:

2 Avocados
4 fresh eggs
Garlic Powder
Cayenne
Pepper
Cheddar
Scallions

1) Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

2) Slice the Avocados in half, and take out the pit (cool trick you can look up on You Tube – once you have the Avocado cut in half – in a smooth, but forceful downward motion “set” the edge of your knife into the pit and give a little twist – comes right out). Spoon out some of flesh from the center of the Avocado, just enough so the egg will fit snugly in the center.

Save this spooned out flesh for later – goes great as a snack with dip… or a mini-batch of Guac!!

One of two things should happen here – take out enough flesh to fit the egg, or use small eggs. Lately we’ve been using pullet eggs. These are eggs from our young hens… they fit right in a smaller cavity and leave a lot of Avocado for the final dish.

3) Place the Avocados in a small baking dish. I have used a oven safe dish, pie pan (as shown) – another great method is to use a muffin tin… this holds the Avocados in place nicely. They have a tendency to want to roll a little and let some egg run over once you get the egg in them.

4) At this point, I like to put a slight (very slight) dusting of Garlic powder, Cayenne, maybe even Onion powder across them – be sparing here. Let the Avocado and the Egg be the stars!!

5) Crack an egg into each Avocado half. Try your best to crack the yolk in first, then let the egg whites spill in to fill up the rest of the shell.

6) Place in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Cooking time will depend on the size of your eggs and avocados. Me, personally – I go about 14 – 15 min… I like a juicy egg. If you like a firmer egg – just go a little longer, make sure the egg whites have enough time to set.

Remove from oven, add some cheddar on top, let them sit a minute to cool giving the cheese a bit to melt. They will be VERY HOT – so be careful.  Season with pepper, top with a sprinkle of Scallions or garnish of your choice and enjoy!

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Epic Sunday Brunch – Chicken and Waffles!!

Epic Sunday Brunch – Chicken and Waffles!!

I picked up some frozen chicken tenderloins at Wal-Mart the other day… I was kind of curious how they would do in this dish.

I took 5 tenderloins out early in the morning to let them thaw so we could get started as soon as my Sweetie got home from Church. With about an hour to go (around 10 O’Clock or so), I put them in a big Zip Lock bag and added some Kosher Dill Pickle juice as a marinade/brine (for the last hour).


They had thawed enough to take some of it on.

I then whisked 1 egg as a wash. I would (normally – see notes) bread in the following:

My Chicken Nugget/Strip Breading:

1 T Almond Flour
1 t Baking powder
1 T Paprika
1 t Onion Powder (that’s a SMALL t – for teaspoon)
1 t Garlic Powder (that’s a SMALL t – for teaspoon)
Plenty of Salt and Black Pepper (a little Cayenne might not hurt)…

Note: However, I skipped the above step because I had a left-over batch of CarbQuick in the fridge already seasoned correctly – lots of Salt, Pepper, Garlic and Cayenne.  Well – it was close enough!!

Take it straight out of the Pickle Brine, into the egg wash and dredge in the coating…

Listen – don’t freak out over CarbQuick. Is it grain – Yes. Is it Low Carb – YES. It only has a carb count of 3 net grams per 1/3rd Cup. Is it something you should use as a staple – probably not. In fact, I don’t use it that much. In lot of things, it just doesn’t do so well.

I use it in CarbQuick in three primary ways – ONLY.  As an easy breading for Fresh Oysters, for Shrimp (if I need a coating)… and in the Diet 7-up biscuits.

That’s it… so you might see a CarbQuick recipe out of me from time to time. This only means we eat a tiny bit of this “slightly sketchy” Low Carb product about once every other month or so. No biggie. We also carefully monitor how it affects us. We weight every morning.


Next I put the strips down in Peanut Oil at 375 degrees for 8-10 min. Mine too exactly 8 ½ min to be perfectly done. WHOA!! They were plump, moist and juicy.

I really like the Pickle Brine routine. I think it adds to the plump, juicy factor.

On another related note – Chicken Nuggets, depending on their size are more like in the 4-6 minute range – mine are usually perfect at 5 min… same oil – same temp.

For the Waffles I did a Pecan Protein Waffle – VERY low carb count.

Protein Waffles

2 eggs, beaten
1 Scoop Quest, unflavored, all – purpose mix (1 gram – natural Carb count)
¼ t Baking Powder
2 T Kosher Philly Cream Cheese (softened in microwave)
Cinnamon, a splash of Sugar Free Vanilla flavoring – a couple of drops of liquid Sucralose and a splash of Maple extract…

Whisk thoroughly – if it gets too gooey just add a little water, won’t hurt a thing.

Next add about a half a hand full of chopped Pecans in the batter – not too many, the lid won’t shut right.

Preheat the Waffle iron – give the Waffle maker a shot of cooking spray, pour the mix in and 3 minutes later – Boom. Waffle!!

Trim it – plate it… add a pat or two of butter in the middle, stack the Chicken – then douse it with “Sweet and Sassy” topping.

Sweet and Sassy Waffle topping

½ C Sugar Free Syrup – the kind you would find at most grocery stores
¼ C Valentina hot sauce (Salsa Picante)
Pretty generous portion of Cinnamon
1 T Maple Extract
Whisk together…

(this was enough for two full servings)

And there is our Epic Low Carb Sunday Brunch…

The End

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The Italian Slow Jam

I had no idea what to even know what to call this – so this is it…

The Italian Slow Jam

A couple of my guiding thoughts are to dispel the myth that the Low Carb / Ketogenic cooking or way of life is boring or uninviting. This is wholly untrue. Another inaccurate perception is that such flavorful recipes are hard to make or take more time than normal. Also untrue.

Earlier today I had been on something of a “snipe hunt” for some Rao’s Marinara and some G Hughes Sugar Free BBQ sauce… I found the Rao’s.

While I was standing there in Wal-Mart holding a jar of this Rao’s Marinara sauce I wondering what in world could I do with this stuff??

Then it hit me… an epiphany really did hit me standing right there in the sauce isle in our local Wal-Mart.

I made some Shirataki noodles…

Here is how I prepped the noodles this time (I have done it a lot of
different ways)…

First, I rinse and rinse and rinse and then rinse just a little more – once
it loses the funny smell when cool – I drain them well. To cook, I tossed
these in a skillet with some butter a dusting of garlic, kosher salt and
black pepper and worked them around similar to stir frying. They don’t
really need cooked more than a minute or tow but cook as long as you want (I
go long enough to get some of the spice flavors I’m using to work in there) – then
drain again. You can’t hardly tell them from regular noodles.

These are the Home Foods brand tofu Shirataki Noodles. I think they can be
ordered on the internet. These are a tiny bit higher carb count than the
Miracle Noodle brand – I like these better. Just a better texture… IMHO

I am somewhat hesitant to use these more than once or twice a week
or so (being made of Konjac flour)… they are VERY FILLING.

I got a quick feel for the Rao’s sauce when I put about a third of a jar in the sauce pan to heat up… I added 4 drops of Quick Sweet (liquid sucralose) and some extra Oregano.

I covered the noodles in the Rao’s 4-cheese Sauce topped with two thick slices of my Smoked Meat Loaf (quick seared in butter)… then the whole thing is covered in some shaved Parmesan – and a few scallions to garnish (I could have just as easily used some fresh Rosemary as well).

My impressions? This tasted something along the lines of a very high end Italian dish – only better. Being from Chicago – it was soooooo good to have stumbled onto this.

I had no idea what to call this – I have never even heard of such a thing, but it was such a delicious, slow jam of Italian awesomeness – this what I came up with. Sweet, smoky, savory and I can’t wait to do it again.

The whole thing took exactly 14 minutes from fridge to plate. Not bad.

So much for Low Carb being hard or boring – huh??

P.S. This had a true carb count for the serving shown – of maybe 5 net carbs?? Maybe even less…

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Smoked Meat Loaf – Oh my…

Smoked Meat Loaf – Oh my…

So this past weekend we had a lot of guests on kind of a short notice – so I swung into action and made a bunch of these Smoked Meat Loaves (16 to be exact) and a Smoked Pork Shoulder (which means easy, delicious meals and lots of pulled pork sandwiches).

Here is my recipe for a smaller “home brew” batch…

Smoked Meat Loaf Recipe

1.5 lbs of Eye of Round, Sirloin, Inside Round or similar beef cut – custom grind

1.5 lbs of Pork shoulder – trimmed and ground (twice)

1/2 C Celery and Onion mixture sauteed in Butter, Garlic and Oregano

1/2 C finely diced Orange Pepper (NOT A HOT PEPPER – just plain Orange Bell Pepper)

1 T Worcestershire sauce (I use the 40% Low Sodium version)

Kosher salt and Pepper to taste

2 T of Tom’s Low Carb Rub

1 C finely ground plain Pork Rinds… (not flavored)

2 eggs

1/4 – 1/2 C Nature’s Hollow Sugar Free Honey

Heinz Reduced Sugar Katsup (about 1 gram per 1 T) as a glaze

I ran both meats through a Lem brand “Prosumer” Meat grinder (twice). Just glorious. Then I mixed all the ingredients as noted. I used a tin foil loaf pan and gave it a quick shot of cooking spray before forming loaves. Form and press out (carefully). Put on some kind of smoking rack and put in the smoker at 250 degrees for 2 hours.

For the last 1/2 hour – I added some Katsup on the top as a glaze…

Let them cool and store – or not…

Slice off nice thick hunks – microwave about 1 minute per loaf and then and give each slice a quick sear on a grill, in a pan or on a flat top (preferably in butter). Oh my… LOW CARB FLAVOR MADNESS!!


Pro Tips: here are a few short cut ideas…

If I had limited items available to me – I might try 2 lbs of regular ground beef and 1 lb of packaged mild sausage.

If I didn’t have access to a wood smoker – I would pick up a cheap, used electric smoker. It will work great for a lot of stuff. In fact, I am going to pick one up for all kinds of stuff I do like this. Great for short, quick smoke sessions. If I couldn’t do any of this – skip it and add 1 T of liquid smoke and just bake it in the oven. Same time – same temp.

Tom’s Low Carb Dry Rub

3 1/2 t Truvia
7 t Chili Powder
3 t Onion Powder
3 t Garlic Powder
3 t Oregano
1 T Black Pepper
1 T Kosher Salt
2 t Paprika

Whisk this rub thoroughly – then use it on EVERYTHING!!

Enjoy. 

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Low Carb Smoked Pork Quiche

Low Carb Smoked Pork Quiche

So yesterday – I was making a quiche with some left over Smoked Pork Tenderloin as the meat… a while back I had smoked off a bunch of different meats. Ribs, Pork T-Loins, Fish, etc, etc…

This stuff was about at the end of it’s “usefulness” so I thought – “what the heck”? Why not throw it in a quiche for breakfasts? I start trimming it up a little better… then I tossed it in my little processor…

As I was standing over this bowl – I was overcome with the incredible aroma of the smoke… WOW!! I was rolling all kinds of ideas around in my head about what I could do with this stuff. Stay strong – stay strong… just make the quiche’ and WALK AWAY!!

Low Carb Quiche recipe:

6-7 eggs
1 C Meat (in this case I used the processed Smoked Pork Tenderloin)
1 C grated Cheddar Cheese
8 oz Cream Cheese (if you like on the moist side – cut this down to 4 oz and add 4 oz of Sour Cream).
2 T of the spice base leftover when storing it…

NO CRUST – Just cooking spray, pour it in and GO!!

Note: Depending on what “version” I’m up to I will add a spice profile to match. For instance, with a more Spanish/American meat version I might toss in a packet of Sazon to amp things up a little.

Mix all ingredients well. Shoot a pie pan with some cooking spray. Pour ingredients in… bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 min. I start checking at about 30. I finished this one off with a little Smoked Paprika and just a little shredded cheese on top.

This worked out REALLY WELL.

However, when I got done processing it – I realized I had something like 3 1/2 cups of this stuff!! SCORE!! I took one cup to make the quiche – and it had CRAZY FLAVOR. Then I took the other 2 1/2 cups and decided to make a version of ham salad since it as already finely chopped.

 

Easy Pork Salad Recipe

2 1/2 C processed Smoked Pork Tenderloin
1 1/2 heaping T of Mayo
3 t No Sugar Sweet Pickle Relish
2 T of the Smoke Spice base left over in the storage container.
3 drops QuickSweet

Whip it all together.

Whoa… really, really good.

This was last nite. After this “Smoked Pork Salad” had a chance for the flavors to really come together over night, it was JUST UNREAL how good this was. This was our third meal/snack. All gone…

Moral to the story – don’t be afraid to be creative!!

The end

Posted in Breakfast, Low Carb Snacks, Recipes, Smoked Stuff, Snacks, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

3-minute Mint Chocolate Cake

3-minute Mint Chocolate Cake

Well, not exactly 3 minutes… but if you had most of the stuff out or on hand (like we did) it happens pretty quick.

But let me back up a little – here’s how this got off the ground. I have this 3-minute Chocolate Cake recipe I’ve used for years (We’ve been messing with Low Carb off and on for 12 or 13 years). It’s really good and has a fairly low carb count.

A while back we ran across some Mint we had stored in a canister from a couple of years ago. It looked pretty green (though dried out) and seemed to have a lot of fragrance to it still. We made some Sugar Free Mint Sweet Tea out of it and I made a batch of Sugar Free Mint Simple Syrup (for flavoring things). What we had left was in the fridge.

Sugar Free Mint Simple Syrup:

2 – 3 T dried Mint
1 C Splenda (or similar)
1 C water

Dissolve Splenda into water over heat and add the dried Mint to mixture – as soon as the Splenda is dissolved and it’s been under heat for a little bit – turn off the heat and let it steep some. Doesn’t need to be long. Once it cools off – put some cheese cloth in a strainer and strain it into a small mason jar. It will be very sweet, Minty and fairly dark in color. This keeps in a fridge just fine.

Sugar Free Mint sweet tea: 

Pretty much the same process as above just don’t use near as much Splenda and more water. You decide how much. This stuff chilled in mason jars is just AWESOME!!

OK – back to today… this evening my wife says, “I think I want to do a whipped topping dessert…” GREAT!!

I suggested we add some of the Mint Syrup to the whipping process so we end up with a “Mint Chocolate” flavor… (man, that part turned out GOOD).

Then we decided to go one step further and do a 3-minute Chocolate Cake – adding some Mint Syrup to the mix and topping with the Mint Chocolate whipped topping at the end… Hmmmmmm??

Here’s the recipe:

3-minute Chocolate Cake

1/4 C Almond Flour
1 T Cocoa
1/4 t baking powder
3T + 1 t Splenda (normally) – What I did for the MINT Version was 2 T Splenda + 3 T Mint Syrup
2 T butter melted
1 T water (normally) – I skipped this in the MINT Version – because I was adding more liquid with the MINT SYRUP
1 Egg

Mix well – scrape sides of container down – wrap with some kind of cooking wrap – make small vent hole in top.

Microwave 1 minute (+ 20 sec?? if needed)

Whipped topping Recipe:

1 C Heavy Cream
1 T Cocoa
3 T Spenda
3 T Sugar Free Mint Syrup

Whip with electric mixer until it fluffs – it won’t take long.

To assemble – make the 3-minute Chocolate Cake – flip it over on a dessert plate (or make it in a mug). I let mine cool for a few minutes because if you put the topping on while it’s hot – it just melts right off. Once it cooled a bit, I put about 3 T of whipped topping on the Cake – or as much as it would hold!!

How did this idea work out?

Success level: EXCEPTIONAL!! This version has some CRAZY FLAVOR!! Really good stuff.

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5 Minute Guacamole (on a bunless egg sandwich)

5 Minute Guacamole (on a Bunless Egg Sandwich)

So I woke up the other day and I’m was thinking about doing a bunless egg sandwich, I kind of had a taste for the Guacamole on there (as shown in the video). However, I was not at all excited about prepping a full batch of Guacamole for one of two bunless egg sandwiches – BLAH!!

Then I got to thinking – “I have a couple of Avocados that need to be used…” – and… “I have about half a container of fresh Pico in the fridge…”

My “thinker got rolling” – now go with me here…

This Pico, from Pancho’s in Spring Hill, TN – has a very similar flavor profile as the spicing of some Guacamole recipes… except that it’s fresh (unlike spice packets).

It has a little onion (not too much – that can get “carby”), a little tomato (same issue – be careful), and plenty of lime. There is a little cilantro in there, which I wouldn’t normally put in Guacamole – AND none of the prep time. Just dump it in. Let’s try this…

I dressed my 3 Avocados – quick!! I added some of the Pico (as show in the pics) to the Avocados in my little food chopper – and BOOM!!

5 minutes or less – I had a LEGIT Guacamole. First thing in the morning. The profile wasn’t perfect, so I added some powdered garlic and more lime juice… and we were OFF!! This is gonna’ be my new “quickie” Guacamole!!

Bunless Egg Sandwich

(Not my recipe – but we’ve used it a few times…)

 

A look at our eggs “in process”. We use eggs from our Americauna hens. They are a little smaller – just the right size right for the rings.

Our finished product – real food, real pics, real life…

Here are some thoughts on this recipe – it is NOT – BY ANY STRETCH, a “finger food”. We like it. It looks good. It tastes good. However, plan on using a knife and fork. This is the difference between “virtual reality” and REALITY. Enjoy.

Pro Tip: This recipe made plenty of Guacamole – note the Guacamole added to the Smoked Fish Taco below – wrapped in a Mission brand Low Carb Tortilla. All for a grand total of less than 5 net grams of Carbs… and FLAVOR – WHOA!!

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Biscuits and Gravy DAY!!

Low Carb Biscuits and Gravy

This is IT!! The best Low Carb Biscuits and Gravy you’ve EVER EATEN!!

Obviously, we were showing off a little with this setting. The whole idea behind this blog and format is real recipes, real pics, real low carb food. However, I’ve done these often and they are a really nice – LOW CARB treat. I really have no desire for biscuits and gravy anywhere else – low carb or not, these are my favorites. I hope you like them.

When we do the “full biscuit and gravy thing” – we usually tag team. I do the biscuits and Arlyne does the gravy. She does awesome gravy. In fact, she does a lot of stuff really well. Breakfast is her specialty though.

For the one above we used our Low Carb Biscuit recipe (see below), while she was doing the gravy she reserved some of the sausage off to the side for topping. Once the biscuit was cut in half, we added some butter on each half. We then spread a generous portion of gravy all over it. We topped it with the reserved sausage crumble. Next we tossed a “quickie microwave egg” on there and covered with with some shredded Cheddar. A little Salt and Pepper – and this meal deserved a BLOG POST IN HISTORY!!

We don’t normally go to those lengths. Usually – it looks like this…

Normally – these are getting eaten so fast – no one has a chance to bother taking pictures – ha ha!!

Tom’s Low Carb Diet 7-UP biscuits

2 C CarbQuick – I added 1/2 t Baking Powder to the dry mix (for a low sodium version – you can leave the Baking Powder out – no problem)

1/2 C Sour Cream

1/2 C Diet 7up or Sprite Zero (I have used both…) – I added 3 drops QuickSweet to the pop in a separate bowl

1/4 Cup melted butter

1. Preheat oven to 450 – Toss the butter in either a deep pie pan or a 9×6? pan and let it melt in the oven for a few while the oven preheats (5 min??)

2. Cut Sour Cream into dry mix (fingers).

3. Stir in Pop – working dough some more.

4. Sprinkle counter with a little dry mix (I use Coconut flour – it tastes GREAT, is dusty for folding and kneading and gives the biscuits a great finish).

5. Knead and fold – doesn’t take that much… I worked the dough to about 1″ thick (or more) and used a pretty big glass to cut them out… rework the dough and do it again. This makes 4 Cat Head biscuits (because they are as big as a Cat’s HEAD).


5.a. In another recent twist on this recipe… I bought a giant Muffin tin at Bed Bath and Beyond. It is a 6 holer and the biggest one I could find. Each hole is 3-3/4in across. I make this recipe x 1 1/2. 1 1/2 is the perfect size batch for 6 big biscuits (fills up my pan).

I make the whole batch – roll it into a log – cut it in half… then work each half a little, form them up and cut them into thirds. In the muffin pan I put a pat of butter in the bottom of each port. While the oven is pre-heating I let the butter melt in the oven for about 5 or 6 minutes. Once I take the butter out and the oven is pre-heated… I add the six biscuits to the pan.

6. Put biscuits on top of butter and bake for 12-15 min… they will soak up the butter and be AWESOME!!

Pro Tip: These biscuits tossed in Tupperware and refrigerated keep really, really well. They might even be better the second day than the first. Maybe not, but in any case – they are really good.

7. The Sausage gravy is pretty normal – use 1 lb Sausage and 2-4 T of Carbquick instead of flour – use Heavy cream, Light cream or Half and Half instead of milk.

Final comment: These biscuits work for all kinds of things. Breakfast, lunch, dinner – any day that ends in “y”!! Enjoy.

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Daily Meal Rewind – Tuesday

“Daily Meal Rewind” – What did we eat on Tuesday?

Breakfast:

Low Carb “Ranch Eggs” AKA – Huevos Rancheros. I don’t think this is the actual pic of that day, but I make this so often, no joke – I accidentally clicked on a pic to add and it landed on this one!! The odds were very good that would happen. I was hungry enough though. I got through with the first two eggs and had some meat left, so I tossed another egg on there.

This is easy to make, almost any kind of Stir Fry, Mexican or spiced meat will work – a  couple of “quickie” microwave eggs on top (or on the stove) and some shredded cheese on top and Voila’!! You have a very flavorful, hearty – yet still very low carb, breakfast.

Lunch: 

Pretty light – but very tasty lunch. I had a bunch of the chicken wings from that bunch of meat I had baked and smoked – these wings had brined off for a bit and then been in the fridge for a couple of days. I was thinking of something to do with them. Simple – chicken wings for lunch.


Really simple – Chicken wings, cut into pieces. They had been in that brine recipe as noted earlier. Fire up the gas grill – spread these little buggers out and keep turning them until they skin starts to bubble a little bit. Usually about 15-20 min on med-high or high… depends on the temp. outside. Delicious!!

WING TUESDAY!!

Supper: 

Snacks… Blue Diamond Almonds and Babybel Cheese – I scored these down at Kroger in Columbia. I was walking along and saw (what I thought was) these on close-out for 1.79. WOW?!? I thought I would try them out as one of our snacks. Turns out – they were mis-marked and should have been 5.99. What I can tell you is – at whatever the price, these things are PRETTY GOOD.

 

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Smoke-A-Palooza 2017

Smoke-A-Palooza 2017

My intention here was to fire up the smoker and do a bunch of meat for both us and my parents…

As you can see, I started off with 3 racks of ribs, 2 pork tenderloins, two whole chickens, some brats (for anyone wandering by during the day – something to snack on) and (not in the picture) I also prepped up 6 thick fish steaks.

For the ribs and pork tenderloins I used a rub I got some years back from a dear friend.

The Rub Recipe:

1 part Smoked Parika
1 part Salt
1 part Garlic Powder
1 part Sweetener (Brown Sugar/Splenda mix or powdered Splenda)
1 part Black Pepper
1 part Raspberry Chocolate coffee – plain grind

The 1 part will depend on how much rub you are making at one time. I think I used either a cup of half a cup and it was the perfect amount for everything I was doing. This trip through I used plain powdered Splenda – worked great.

I made a much smaller batch of the rub for Mom and Dad’s stuff. He’s supposed to be on a strict low sodium regime and she doesn’t like things as spicy.

I covered the ribs and tenderloins in a plain yellow mustard coating – let it set up just a bit, maybe an hour or so in the fridge.

I had put them all on a rack covered in tin foil. So I could handle them easier…

Then I generously doused and rubbed all the pieces with the rub. One of the pork tenders and one rack of ribs was meant for Mom and Dad so I cut out all the salt in the rub, cut the hotter spice profile in half and added some extra Splenda / Brown sugar mix to their portion. Mine I did a little different.

The Brats didn’t really need any treatment.

Here is the brine/marinade I made for the chicken and fish.

Brine recipe:

16 Cups water
3/4 Cup Kosher salt (I cut this number way down for this batch)
2/3 Cup powdered Splenda
2 Heads Garlic (I think I used minced garlic – if I recall correctly)
1/4 Cup Sage
1 Bay Leaf
1 TBSP Peppercorns
Cook on stove top 20 min. Take off and let cool (at least 2 hours). Don’t put the chicken in hot – you will start the poaching process.

I mixed it up in a medium / tall pot. Before I dumped the chicken in the brine I dipped some of the mixture out for the fish (which I waited to brine until about 6 hours before I was ready to smoke). The chicken would eventually end up soaking for about 36 hours. 8 is plenty – but it was in the fridge. No biggie.

I had everything ready – then we had some serious storms in the forecast. I decided to leave everything as it was in the fridge overnight and try again the next morning. No problem.

The next morning I fired up the smoker. Good thing we waited, I had a hard time getting it to draft properly so I moved it out in the open and put a plain box fan about 4 feet away from the firebox on low – worked great. Got everything moving right along. I would have been drenched all day.

I put the 3 racks of Ribs, 2 Loins, and some Brats on first – trying to keep a consistent 225* heat profile. Turns out I didn’t have room on the smoker for any of the Chicken.

I wound up letting the ribs go about 8 hours on the grill. At the 3 hour mark I put them in a double foil wrap and dumped a bunch of Apple Cider Vinegar in with them. They were looking a little firm on the way in – the ACV started working that right out. When they came off the grill, I wasn’t super impressed with the tenderness… so I put them in a 13×9″ metal baking pan – poured all the juice from the tin foil over them. I covered them with the same foil and stuck them in the oven. I let them bake off at 250* for another 2 hours or so.

Here is what they turned out like…

This particular pic was from a “Rib Snack” about 10:30 one day… YUM!!

Psssttt –  That sauce is my very own LOW CARB BBQ Sauce.

I did much the same with the Pork Loins but not as long. Same grill – same temp, at the 3 hour mark I took them off, double foil wrapped them (if you don’t do this – you almost always puncture the foil and lose all the juice), then I added plenty of ACV to them as well. At 5 hours I took them off and let them rest a while. Ready to serve – WHOA!! Good stuff.

Here’s a shot of the Pork Loin done… nice smoke ring – huh??

The Brats really didn’t take that long – and they didn’t last long afterward either. The first pack was gone really quick. Myself, Arlyne, Dad and couple of workers at the shop – POOF. Gone. I sent Arlyne down to the store for a couple more packs – why not?? I was gonna’ be here anyway. The next two packs didn’t last long either… anyone within “smell range” had one!!

In the space on the smoker grill where the Brats had been – I put the fish. I did very little to them other than the marinade. A light, quick coating of Olive Oil, a light (and I mean LIGHT) dusting of Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning and on they went… for about an hour – 1 1/2 hour. Depends on the size what they look like. I did them in 2 batches of 3. My stainless fish rack is kinda’ small. Plus – I really didn’t have much room left on the grill surface.

Here’s what the fish looks like as starter for Fish Tacos… this was 1/2 of one filet (maybe not even that much?).

The flavor of the fish was just UNREAL GOOD.

Here is another shot of a half rack of the ribs… (this is making my mouth water all over again). Writing this crazy blog might not have been such a good idea. Ha Ha!!

Here’s a “during” shot of the same half-rack after I got into it for a minute… SERIOUSLY GOOD STUFF.

PRO TIP: This had all been done at once… These ribs have set finished in the fridge for at least 2 days. I cut out what I wanted for lunch. I dded the ribs and plenty of the juice/renderings to a plain sauce pan – threw it in the over for about 20-25 min at 250*. Just gently bringing it up to a comfortable temp. STUNNINGLY GOOD.

A few quick notes…

I have used the above rub, off and on for a few years. I’m going to experiment with a little more of a “Cajun twist” and several other sweeteners. For instance, how about dousing a rack of ribs with a No Sugar Maple Syrup? Or the Sugar Free Honey Substitute from Netrition.com? I’m also going to toy with some other sweeteners in the actual rub. One never knows, I might find something I like better.

The Chicken didn’t ever make it onto the smoker. I’ll be smoking again soon. I’ll include Chicken… and wings… probably some fish. Ha Ha – you get the idea.

BTW- I used Apple wood and some commercial hardwood chips in a smoker box to get started. Once everything is in foil, wood choice doesn’t matter that much. I finished with some Oak – I think?

I forgot to mention – towards the end, when I had some space I smoked off a pan of Roma Tomatoes and a couple of Onions. I made a Smoked Tomato and Onion salad dressing… I’ll share the recipe in another post soon. The veggies carry the smoke flavor way better than you might think. Pretty awesome.

I did bake the Chicken off in the oven the other day. It turned out great. I cleaned it all. I’ll use the breasts for salads… maybe some Chicken Salad?? I’ve got a killer recipe for that. Mom says it’s the best one she’s ever tasted. I’ll post it soon and let you decide.

I also cleaned all the leg and thigh meat and minced it down. It’s in the fridge as I write this – I’m plotting some VERY LOW CARB “Boneless Buffalo Wing nuggets” in the deep fryer soon… I can’t WAIT!!

See you soon!!

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