THE Premier Low-Carb store .. .. AND Meeting Place

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Does Chocolate Taste as Good as Skinny Feels? lol


Here are some chocolate recipes to enjoy - look through the confections and choose:

CONFECTIONS for your enjoyment.



Friday, June 29, 2012

Creamy Freezer Fudge



CREAMY FREEZER FUDGE
This creamy-smooth, chewy fudge with a subtle peanut butter and honey flavor is very sweet (like fudge) and thus rather addictive for those with a sweet tooth. Ian and I had a friendly race to the freezer for the last few blocks, which we then shared. 


For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:
Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 
http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced!

3 tbsp melted butter (45 mL)
Liquid sweetener to equal 1/2 cup sugar (125 mL)
3 tbsp water (45 mL)
2 tbsp creamy peanut butter (30 mL)
  (sugar-free)
1 tbsp honey, OR sugar-free honey* (15 mL)
1/4 cup whole milk powder (or skim) (60 mL)
1/4 cup powdered erythritol, OR Steviva Blend® (60 mL)  
1/2 tsp cornstarch (2 mL)
4 oz cocoa butter, melted (120 g)

Line an 8 x 4 x 3-inch (1.5 L) loaf pan with parchment paper (spray pan with nonstick cooking spray first).  In blender, combine melted butter, Liquid sweetener, water, peanut butter, honey, OR sugar-free honey, whole milk powder, powdered erythritol, OR Steviva Blend®, vanilla whey protein and cornstarch.  Blend until smooth.  In deep microwave-safe bowl, place cocoa butter.  Microwave 4 to 5 minutes, or until melted. 

Use oven mitts to retrieve bowl from microwave oven after a couple of minutes to allow it to cool a bit and be extremely careful.  Add contents of blender to cocoa butter and using a whisk, whisk it all in until creamy, smooth and thick.  Pour into prepared loaf pan and freeze for 1 hour.  Remove and score into 36 small squares.  Freeze again.

Helpful Hint:  *Instead of honey, you can use sugar-free maple pancake syrup.

Yield: 36 servings
1 serving
49.7 calories
0.8 g protein
4.8 g fat
1.1 g net carbs


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Best-loved Baking Recipe in Low-Carbing Among Friends, Vol-1



This recipe has probably been made the most and enjoyed the most of all my baking and dessert recipes from Low-Carbing Among Friends, Volume 1 from the tremendous feedback I have received (that was fun!!).  

I made the banana loaf again the other day for the photo for the booklet and added dark mini chocolate chips.  It was moist and delicious.  People have also made muffins using this recipe.   I had two going in the oven that were put in at different times and I opened the oven door too often (putting foil on top and checking the other loaf).  The reason I had two going is quite comical.  I was tired from working all day and decided to make the loaf.  Anyway, I completely forgot to add the butter and I had just put the loaf in the oven.  I quickly took it out and stirred in half the amount of melted butter required (it turned out great, but the top of the loaf was a little more craggy.  At any rate, not sure at that moment in time how it would turn out, I quickly made another and put it in the oven alongside the first loaf. lol  That's the story.  So, it is quite possible to save calories and use half the amount of butter called for in the recipe.)  Chocolate chips (my favorite) or nuts work best in this loaf.


BANANA BREAD
Real, moist banana bread, dark in color – good carbs!  In the tropics, the animals and the birds all love bananas, even my adopted doggie, Smiley.   I used a few raisins instead of walnuts for this bread in the photo because I am usually in weight maintenance mode although I could stand to lose some weight again.  You might see some more strict dieting lower carb options on my blog for a while.    Sorry about the quality of the second photo.  It was in my kitchen late at night and the lighting was poor.  The loaf keeps its height and does not sink.  I'm beginning to notice that with the new and improved Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix that there is little to no sinking with the baking.  I need to verify this but it seems that way.

1/2  cup butter
2 bananas, mashed
3/4  tsp EZ-Sweetz liquid sweetener (sucralose or stevia) to equal 3/4  cup sugar
1/4  cup granulated erythritol
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda                
1/4  tsp salt
1/2  cup sugar-free chocolate chips, OR walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F. In food processor, process butter, mashed bananas, EZ-Sweetz, erythritol, eggs and vanilla extract.  In medium bowl, combine Gluten-free Bake Mix, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Add to egg mixture and process until batter thickens up.  Stir in sugar-free chocolate chips, OR walnuts.

Line an 8 x 4 x 3-inch loaf pan with parchment paper (or aluminum foil, unless the pan is really new and nonstick).  Spray with nonstick cooking spray. Pour batter into pan.  Bake approximately 50 minutes to 1 hour, covering loaf lightly with sheet of foil during the last 25 minutes. Test loaf with a dinner knife and if it comes out clean, loaf is done.  Allow loaf to cool a few minutes and pick up the parchment paper and set it down on a cake rack. Gently remove paper from sides of the loaf.  If not using parchment paper or foil, allow the loaf to cool in pan about 10 minutes on cake rack and then remove. Allow loaf to cool completely before slicing with a sharp bread knife.  Refrigerate or freeze leftovers after a day.

Helpful Hints:  Low-carb baking often sticks to the baking pan.  Lining the pan with foil or wax paper and spraying with nonstick cooking spray will ensure the bread comes out easily.  Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing with a sharp bread knife.  Refrigerate or freeze leftovers after a day.  It is easy to slice super-thin slices of low-carb loaves (fewer carbs and calories!) after they have been refrigerated and thoroughly chilled.  No frosting is required - this is a very tasty loaf!  It tastes like the real thing.

Yield:  18 servings
1 serv: choc. chips/walnuts
143.5/143.2 calories
3.1/3.7 g protein
10.9/11.7 g fat
0.2/0.4 g fiber
5.7/5.7 g net carbs 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Bacon 'n Cheese Muffins and Condensed Cream of Tomato Soup






BACON ‘N ONION CHEESE MUFFINS
    These bread-like muffins are great with soup or a substantial salad, if it is summertime. (Jen)
11/4 cups Gluten-Free Bake Mix (300 mL)
Sweetener to equal 1 tbsp sugar (15 mL)
11/2 tsp baking powder (7 mL)
1/4 tsp salt (1 mL)
4 eggs
1/4 cup olive oil (60 mL)
1/4 cup low-carb milk (60 mL)
1/4 cup diced Monterey Jack cheese (60 mL)
2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 tbsp minced onion (15 mL)

Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). In medium bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix, page___, sweetener, baking powder and salt.

In food processor, process eggs, olive oil, low-carb milk, page___ and Monterey Jack cheese.  Add dry ingredients and process until thickened.  Stir in bacon and minced onion.  Scoop into paper cup lined muffin tray and bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until turning light brown on top and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Yield:  9 savory muffins
1 muffin
156.4 calories
5.3 g protein
13.0 g fat
3.9 g carbs


CONDENSED CREAM OF TOMATO SOUP
This quick-to-make soup may be used in place of commercial cream of tomato soup.  It is tasty and thick and sans all that sodium and no MSG. (Jen)
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (411 g)
  (Hunts®)
1 cup heavy cream (250 mL)
1 tsp salt (5 mL)
1/2 tsp glucomannan powder, (2 mL)
  (2 capsules), OR xanthan gum (half amount)
1/4 to 1/2 tsp hot sauce, to taste (1 to 2 mL)
1/4 tsp paprika (1 mL)
1/4 tsp black pepper (1 mL)

In food processor or blender, process tomatoes.  Add heavy cream, salt, glucomannan powder, OR xanthan gum, hot sauce, paprika and black pepper; process.  Taste and adjust salt level to your liking.  Upon standing, this soup thickens up.  Heat some in a bowl in the microwave oven and enjoy!

Helpful Hints:  Glucomannan powder is a useful ingredient in managing blood sugar. 

Yield:  3 servings
Almost 1 cup per serving
296.8 calories
3.5 g protein
25.5 g fat
9.9 g carbs


For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:
Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 
http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced! 







Garden Salad with Creamy Italian Dressing

A garden salad could not be easier or prettier or more versatile.  Add the veggies you enjoy to your salad and serve with Creamy Italian Dressing or Non-Creamy Italian Dressing, page 36 of Low-Carbing Among Friends, volume-1.  The recipe may be doubled, if desired.




CREAMY ITALIAN DRESSING
This is a handy recipe to have on hand.  For a non-creamy Italian Dressing, see Low-Carbing Among Friends, page 36.

1/cup olive oil (60 mL)
2 tbsp vinegar (30 mL)
2 tbsp mayonnaise (30 mL)
1 tbsp heavy cream (15 mL)
1 tbsp Parmesan cheese (15 mL)
1/2 tsp garlic powder (2 mL)
1/2 tsp onion powder (2 mL)
1/2 tsp salt (2 mL)
1/2 tsp black pepper (2 mL)
1/8 tsp Worcestershire sauce (0.5 mL)

In blender, combine olive oil, vinegar, mayonnaise, heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, black pepper and Worcestershire sauce.


Yield:  1 cup (250 mL)
1 tbsp (15 mL) per serving
74.7 calories
0.4 g protein
8.0 g fat
0.7 g net carbs



Wednesday, June 20, 2012

LEMON COOKIES




LEMON COOKIES
A delectable lemon cookie to enjoy with your coffee.  I like these kept in the freezer for more of a crunchy texture, which I prefer.  Sometimes I just want a cookie...so nice to have my Gluten-Free Bake Mix, because I can pick and choose which recipes I want to make.  Typically it works real well in cookie recipes...especially Gluten-Free Bake Mix 1 (with xanthan gum).  Next preference is Bake Mix 2.  Bake Mix 3 (using neither xanthan gum nor gelatin) will work for many recipes, but sometimes you may get a crumbly outcome!

11/2 cups Gluten-Free Bake Mix 1 (375 mL)
1/4 tsp baking powder (1 mL)
1/4 tsp salt (1 mL)
1/8 tsp baking soda (0.5 mL)
1/2 cup butter, softened (125 mL)
1 egg
Liquid sweetener (sucralose or stevia) to equal
  1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup granulated erythritol (60 mL)
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice (15 mL)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (2 mL)
2 tsp lemon zest (10 mL)
1/2 cup Steviva Blend®, powdered, OR anything similar (125 mL)
  (I also like the Natural Mate products (combo sweeteners) available on Netrition.com and Amazon.com)

Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.  In medium bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix 1, baking powder, salt and baking soda. 

In food processor, process butter.  Add egg, liquid sweetener, erythritol, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Add dry ingredients and process until thickened.  Add lemon zest and process briefly. Place finely powdered Steviva Blend® OR equivalent in a small bowl.  Form generous tablespoon (15 mL) portions.  Roll into balls and then in powdered sweetener. Place on parchment paper and flatten cookies with back of spoon. Bake 10 minutes, or until bottoms are beginning to brown.  Allow to cool.  Keep in freezer or refrigerator, depending on the texture that you prefer.

Yield:  16 cookies
1 serving
103.5 calories
2.1 g protein
9.4 g fat
2.3 g carbs



For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:

Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 

http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced! 

Saturday, June 16, 2012

FATHER'S DAY DINNER

This is the dinner I made for my hubby as a pre-Father's Day celebration.


A mixed grill dinner: Char's Ribs, from Low-Carbing Among Friends, vol-1, Rib-Eye Steak (14 oz), Lower Sodium Eggplant Parmigiana, Caesar Salad and Faux Stuffed Baked Potato (recipe below).  He loved it!  He had fun trying to finish it all, but, of course, it was way too much food. LOL  We put that much together for the photo shoot - so that it would look extra yummy!

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there who are so deserving.  Here is yet another Father's Day Feast to feast your eyes on!


FAUX BAKED POTATO
A little taste of the real thing with delicious fixings is guaranteed to chase away feelings of deprivation, while the rest of the family or guests enjoy regular baked or mashed potatoes. 

1 medium baking potato
1 tsp butter or olive oil (5 mL)
1/3  cup Creamed Faux Mashed (75 mL)
  Potatoes, Low-Carbing Among Friends,
  page 50
2 tbsp grated Cheddar cheese, OR (30 mL)
  to taste
Optional Fixings:
Real crispy cooked bacon, chopped
Chives, OR green onions, chopped
Sour cream

Scrub potato skin really clean with potato scrubber.  Dry with paper towel.  Rub potato with butter or olive oil. Bake potato in 450°F (230°C) oven 45 minutes or until skin is crispy and inside is soft when tested with a sharp knife.  Cut in half lengthwise.  Scoop out potato pulp and fill each half with Creamed Faux Mashed Potatoes, page___, Low-Carbing Among Friends, page 50.  Cover each half with Cheddar cheese to taste.  Place in oven again until cheese has melted and faux potato filling is hot. 

Optional Fixings:  Add optional fixings of choice.  Serve with sour cream, if desired.

Helpful Hints:  Typically, half a Faux Baked Potato is sufficient for one serving.  (3.0 g Carbs)  If you are less carb sensitive, then a little real potato may be mashed into the cauliflower, or simply add more cream cheese to give a more substantial cauli-mash with body.

Yield:  1 Faux Baked Potato
1 serving
164.2 calories
5.8 g protein
12.7 g fat
5.8 g carbs

For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:
Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 
http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

HAMBURGER AND "FRIES"

Hamburger and Fries.  I didn't have bacon or lettuce - that was sad!  However, it was still delicioso!  The potato skins are better than fries any day of the week!  Trust on me on this one!  That is my Artisan Sesame Hamburger Bun, page 60, Low-Carbing Among Friends, vol-1.


Hamburger Patties


CRISPY POTATO SKINS OR "FRIES"
Jonathan said with delight, “This is a great appetizer.  Put it in the book!” A man named Arthur commented on my blog: “You have changed my low-carb world. I never even thought I could have the skins from potatoes!” Ginny from Ginny’s Low-Carb Kitchen said: “Good idea for me since my men all eat potatoes. I never thought of using the skins.”   What to do with the rest of the potatoes - mash and give to a neighbor or guests.

Hamburger Buns - CLICK HERE

3 lbs potatoes (1.5 kg)
  (approx. 13 oz (368 g) potato skins)
1/4  cup olive oil (60 mL)
1 tsp seasoning salt (5 mL)
1/4  tsp paprika (1 mL)
1 green onion, chopped
11/2  cups Monterey Jack, OR (375 mL)
  Cheddar cheese

Peel potato skins in thin strips.  Set peel aside. 

In large bowl, combine olive oil, seasoning salt and paprika.  Add potato skins and toss in seasoned oil to coat well.  Lay out in single layer on cookie sheets.  Bake in 425°F (220°C) oven 15 to 30 minutes, checking every 5 minutes after the 15 minutes have elapsed to remove crisp, golden potato skins.

Once all potato skins are baked to perfection, lay them out once again on cookie sheets and sprinkle with green onion and Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese.  Bake 5 to 10 minutes, or until cheese has melted.

Helpful Hints:  These may also be served with a meal in lieu of potatoes or French Fries.  Use peeled potatoes to make a scalloped potato casserole or mashed potatoes for family members or friends or a neighbor not on a low-carb diet.

Yield:  6 servings
1 serving
235.9 calories
9.0 g protein
19.0 g fat
6.0 g carbs
HAMBURGER PATTIES
An easy, tasty recipe!   

3 lbs lean ground beef (1.4 kg)
3 eggs, fork beaten
3 tbsp Gluten-Free Bake Mix, (45 mL)
1 tbsp GF Worcestershire sauce, (15 mL)
  (Lea and Perrins®, original formula)
1 tsp crushed garlic (5 mL)
1/2 tsp No Salt® (2 mL)
1/2 tsp seasoning salt (2 mL)
1/4 tsp black pepper (1 mL)
3 tbsp olive oil, divided (45 mL)

In large bowl, place ground beef and Gluten-Free Bake Mix, page___.  In small bowl, whisk eggs, Worcestershire sauce, crushed garlic, No Salt®, seasoning salt and black pepper. .   Add egg mixture to ground beef and mix well.   Form patties. 

In large frying pan, in half of the olive oil fry patties on the one side until cooked underneath, flip and cook the other side.  Repeat.  I place a lid on the frying pan while cooking it on the other side, in order to make sure they are not only browned but also no longer pink inside.  Check when you think they are ready to make sure the hamburger patties are well done.

Yield:  22 patties
1 patty
165.3 calories
12.7 g protein
12.1 g fat
0.4 g carbs


For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:

Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 

http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced! 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Jiffy Banana or Jiffy Pumpkin Muffins

Jiffy Banana Muffins

Jiffy Pumpkin Muffins

JIFFY BANANA MUFFINS
Delicious muffins made in a jiffy.  I love these muffins with the chocolate chips in them – especially the bottom part as many of the chips drop – pure fudgey, banana-and-chocolate-flavored heaven in a muffin. The muffins are great even without chocolate chips.  One could add a tsp or two of snipped raisins or prunes instead, if desired  Mini dark chocolate chips go further and you can use less.  A dark chocolate Lindt bar could be chopped into fine pieces to stand in as chips.

These are moderate carb - not super low, but then again, most of my muffins in the cookbook are between 5 and 6 grams if I remember correctly, so not too much extra when you look at it that way. Muffins are typically very carby things. When I was a young woman and my boys were little and we were living in Canada, I would go the Eatons Center for the day with Dan held by the hand and Jon in his pram (stroller). The first thing we would do is stop by Mmmm Muffins or the Muffin shop that Jean Pare was famous for. I loved them, but, boy they were not exactly good for us, except I didn't know that yet. I was so skinny and hardly knew the weight struggles that I would have to face later on...what with Hashimoto's Thyroiditis as well (not an excuse, but it doesn't exactly help matters, nor do the stuttering hormones as one is about to enter menopause).

5 tbsp Gluten-Free Bake Mix (75 mL)
2 tbsp erythritol (30 mL)
1/2 tsp baking powder (2 mL)
1/8 tsp salt (0.5 mL)
1 egg
2 tbsp mashed banana (30 mL)
1 tbsp heavy cream (15 mL)
Liquid sweetener (sucralose or stevia) to equal 2 tsp sugar (10 mL)
1 tsp olive oil (5 mL)
1/tsp vanilla extract (1 mL)
1 to 2 tbsp sugar-free chocolate chips (15 to 30 mL)
  (optional - sprinkle some chips on top of batter)

In small bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix, erythritol, baking powder and salt.  In another small bowl, whisk egg with fork and whisk in banana, heavy cream, Liquid sweetener, olive oil and vanilla extract.  Add to dry ingredients and whisk well with fork.  Stir in chocolate chips, if using.  Pour into two greased ramekins.  Nuke approximately 1 minute and 10 seconds, or until top springs back when touched.  Allow to cool almost completely for best taste experience.

Yield:  2 muffins
1 muffin
154.0 calories
6.3 g protein
10.5 g fat
7.4 g carbs

Variation:  Jiffy Fudgey Pumpkin Muffins:  Use 3 tbsp canned pumpkin, Liquid sweetener to equal 8 tsp (40 mL) sugar, 1/2 tsp (2 mL) cinnamon and 1/tsp (1 mL) nutmeg.  Nuke 1 minute 30 seconds or undercook slightly at 1 minute 15 seconds for a super-moist, fudgey muffin. (6.2 g carbs and with chocolate chips 6.7 g carbs)

Helpful Hints:  My microwave oven is a Panasonic Inverter – 1200 Watts.  Cooking time may vary depending on your microwave oven.  These muffins taste best if allowed to cool to room temperature.  

For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:
Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 

http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

CINNAMON COOKIE CRACKERS

Here is how they look on the parchment paper:




CINNAMON COOKIE CRACKERS
These cookie crackers are nicer to me (and healthier) than commercial varieties. Lovely spread with  butter and my favorite peanut butter.  These take care of the need for “crunch” on this WOE.  These reminded my boys of graham crackers or animal crackers - but they are crunchier, I think.  It's been a while since I had any of those, however.  I hope someone makes these and gives me some feedback.  I love them and will continue making them forever and a day.  
                                                                                  
1 cup Gluten-Free Bake Mix, (250 mL)
  page___
1 tsp cinnamon (5 mL)
1/4 tsp salt (1 mL)
2 eggs
Liquid sweeteber (sucralose or stevia) equal to 1/4 cup sugar (60 mL)

Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).  Spray 10 x 15-inch (25 x 38 cm) jelly-roll pan with nonstick cooking spray.  Line with parchment paper; cut off excess paper.  In medium bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix, page___, cinnamon and salt.  In small bowl, beat eggs with fork and add liquid sweetener.  Add to well in dry ingredients and mix well.

Place dough ball on parchment paper.  Cover with another large piece of parchment paper and roll out to cover pan, almost completely.  Leave top parchment paper in place.  Bake 5 minutes.  Cut crackers (right through) into 8 x 5 pieces (40 crackers).  Bake a further 10 minutes.  Remove and carefully carry parchment paper holding crackers to the microwave oven.  Nuke 3 minutes, or until the crackers are nice and hard.  Allow to cool and then store in a sealed tin at room temperature.

Yield:  40 crackers
1 cracker
16.4 calories
0.8 g protein
1.1 g fat
0.6 g carbs

Variation:  Savory Crackers for Soup:  These crackers are great for crumbling into hot soup, however, omit the sweetener and cinnamon. Add some onion powder, if desired.

Jiffy Cinnamon Cookie Crackers:  Make half the recipe and roll into a rectangle or big circle between two pieces of parchment paper.  Leave the parchment paper in place and nuke in microwave oven 1 minute, remove paper, score crackers, flip, nuke 1 minute, flip again and nuke another minute.  I usually nuke it another 50 seconds and then it's nice and hard.  It hardens a little more upon cooling.  2 servings: (6 g carbs)

Helpful Hints:  I have a Panasonic Inverter, 1200 watts microwave oven.  Your timing may be different for these crackers, so keep that in mind.  You could also finish baking the crackers in the oven and skip the microwave oven, if desired.  You may need another 5 to 10 minutes, but keep an eye on them and remove the crackers around the outer edges of the pan that are turning very crispy and brown.  I used the oven and microwave oven method to avoid the fussy stage, just described – so easy just to nuke the crackers before that stage.



For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:

Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 

http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced!