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Sunday, May 29, 2016

BROCCOLI SWISS CHEESE SOUP



BROCCOLI SWISS CHEESE SOUP
Broccoli is such a healthy vegetable.  Supposedly it can actually prevent stomach ulcers, so I think one should eat it at least once a week.  My soups are really easy if you already have homemade chicken stock on hand. See Low-Carbing Among Friends, Volume-2 for a recipe.  I steer clear of commercial soups as they are high in sodium, contain MSG and even high fructose corn syrup in some cases.  There is nothing quite like, tasty homemade soups.  They cannot be duplicated commercially, in my opinion.  Served with my FOCACCIA BREAD (CLICK HERE).

7 oz broccoli florets (198 g)
1 tbsp olive oil (15 mL)
1/2 cup diced onion (125 mL)
Seasoning salt, to taste
2 cups chicken stock (500 mL)
1/2 cup heavy cream (125 mL)
1 tbsp arrowroot powder, OR (15 mL)
  corn starch
3 oz Swiss cheese (90 g)
Salt and pepper, to taste
Heavy cream for garnish, (optional)

In pot in boiling water, cook broccoli florets until it tests tender to a fork. 

Meanwhile in frying pan, in olive oil, cook onion over medium heat until turning brown.  Add broccoli and stir fry for a minute or two until broccoli is as tender as you would like it to be (softer; less texture/bits in the soup) and sprinkle with seasoning salt, to taste.  In blender combine vegetables, chicken stock, cream and arrowroot powder, OR corn starch.  Blend.  Pour into frying pan and bring to the boil.  Boil until thickened. 

Reduce heat and stir in Swiss cheese.  Allow cheese to melt.  Pour soup into bowls and drizzle heavy cream over top of soup in a swirl pattern, if desired, and serve.  Nice to serve with a bit of bacon and extra cheese and lots of black pepper.

Yield:   4 servings
1 serving
223.3 calories
11.3 g protein
16.5 g fat
6.9 g net carbs


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


BACON-WRAPPED MEAT LOAF


BACON-WRAPPED MEAT LOAF

This is based on one of my husband’s favorite recipes for meat loaf from his childhood.  I have made this recipe countless many times through the years.  Thought I'd share the recipe finally.  This recipe is in SPLENDID LOW-CARBING, my first low-carb cookbook, which became a national best seller, much to my surprise, actually.  That spurred me on to write 4 more books in that series, however, Dr. Atkins died more or less when I was doing my last book in the series and our cookbook sales completely tanked.  Even the Atkins company hit financial tough times, literally giving away thousands of Atkins Advantage bars.  Dr. Atkins left a good legacy and that is he taught us that low-carbing is the way to regain our health.  I have come to believe that sugar turns on the fat switch and going off of it, turns the fat switch off.  White flour is also bad, but not quite as bad as sugar in that way.

2 eggs, fork beaten
1 tbsp instant beef stock mix (15 mL)
1 tbsp vinegar (15 mL)
Sweetener to equal 2 tsp sugar (10 mL)
  (OPTIONAL - just to balance very savory flavors)
1/tsp salt (2 mL)
1/2 tsp black pepper (2 mL)
2 lbs lean ground beef (0.9 kg)
1/2 cup finely chopped onion (125 mL)
1/3 cup oat bran, OR oat fiber for lower carbs (75 mL)
1/4 cup tomato paste (50 mL)
6 slices raw bacon, thawed

In small bowl, combine eggs, beef stock mix, vinegar, SPLENDA® Granular, salt and black pepper.  In large bowl, combine ground beef, egg mixture, onion, wheat or oat bran and tomato paste. Place on 15 x 10-inch (38 x 25 cm) jelly roll pan.  Form into 14-inch (36 cm) loaf or roll. Wrap bacon around loaf, leaving small spaces in between. Bake in 350°F (180°C) oven 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Variation:  Hamburgers:  Omit tomato paste, vinegar and sweetener.  Form meat mixture into 16 hamburgers, 3-inches (8 cm) across. Serve with small piece bacon on top, if desired. (1.1 g carbs)

Helpful Hint:  Any pinkish-red color that you may see in the meat loaf after it has cooked, is due to the tomato paste, and does not mean it is undercooked.

Yield:  10 servings
1 serving
252.9 calories
22.5 g protein
16.1 g fat
1.0 g fiber
2.7 g carbs

SUPPORT YOUR TEAMbuy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks: low-carb.us/SALE.go


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

Saturday, May 28, 2016

SPLENDID GLUTEN-FREE, LOW-CARB BAKE MIX 2 - AS SEEN IN UPDATED LOW-CARBING AMONG FRIENDS' COOKBOOKS



SPLENDID GLUTEN-FREE BAKE MIX 2
This is the bake mix I favor these days. Gelatin is very healthy for the digestive and immune system and does not cause digestive distress like xanthan gum can. Gelatin helps bind the wet ingredients and also the dry “flour” components of the bake mix to prevent crumbly outcomes, which is what the xanthan gum accomplished in the original bake mix. For the record, I never weigh the ingredients!  This is a very forgiving bake mix and so easy to use.  There is so much one can do with it!  I love it and it totally changed my low-carb lifestyle.  If you do not want the oat flour, you can look at some of the alternatives or use this bake mix in pre-maintenance and maintenance levels of the Atkins diet.  Please read the older link for the bake mix for tons of info on how wonderful gelatin and oat flour are for our health, let alone the heart-healthy almond flour. If I only mention the former bake mix, it typically means the recipe has only been tested using it, however, I believe that the two bake mixes are typically fully interchangeable!

This is the updated version as seen in revised copies of our Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks.  Volumes 1, 3 and 4 have been revised and are organized by category, instead of by author.  They have lots of lovely photos.  Volume 5 also has photos and is organized by category.  Volume 2 and 5 are the next books that are being revised.  I am hoping to have a new cookbook one of these days in addition to Kindle books (my recipes only with perhaps a few from each of the team of Low-Carbing Among Friends).

Note:  I used to use almond meal (using sliced almonds and a coffee bean grinder), but these days I feel enormously blessed to be able to order 25 lbs of the best almond flour ever from Honeyville Grains online).

12/3  cups almond meal, OR (400 mL; 182 g)
  almond flour
3/4  cup certified GF oat flour, (175 ml; 100 g)
  (Bob’s Red Mill®, not Legacy Valley®)
2 tbsp coconut flour, (30 mL)
  (Bob’s Red Mill®)

In large bowl, combine almond meal (grind sliced almonds in coffee bean grinder), OR almond flour, oat flour and coconut flour. In container with airtight lid, place bake mix and shake well to combine.  When measuring oat flour (only with the oat flour) into measuring cup, make sure to tap the cup on the counter top and fill to top to get the correct yield for the bake mix.  Keep bake mix at room temperature for up to one month or freeze or refrigerate for longer storage.

Instructions for substituting the bake mix in your own flour-containing recipes:  Add 1/4 cup (60 mL) additional bake mix when substituting for 1 cup (250 mL) or more than 1 cup (250 mL) flour and use 2 tbsp (30 mL) more if substituting for less than 1 cup (250 mL).  Always begin by adding an extra egg in muffins, loaves, cakes and coffee cakes, except for cookies and except if bake mix required is less than or equal to 1 cup (250 mL).  Withhold 1/4 cup (60 mL) of liquid/wet or fat ingredients; add in as needed (usually need it all). If batter after processing at least a minute is still too thick, add more of the wet ingredients, and if accidentally the batter ends up too sloppy, then add a little more bake mix. If all the liquid has been used and the batter is still too stiff, add another egg.

Adding Gelatin:  Use 1/2 tsp (2 mL) unflavored gelatin for less than and equal to 1 cup (250 mL) Gluten-Free Bake Mix.  For more than 1 cup (250 mL), use 1 tsp (5 mL) gelatin.  For 2 cups (500 mL) or more use 11/2 tsp (7 mL) gelatin. Gelatin is added to wet ingredients in a food processor or mixer and mixed well. Add dry ingredients and process until well combined.  That’s it.  It couldn’t be easier!

Some of the health Benefits of Gelatin

Applications:  Gelatin option works in muffins, biscuits, donuts, cakes, donuts, scones, loaves, bundt cakes, cupcakes, squares and cookies. The gluten-free bake mixes need eggs in almost all applications. Gelatin is not always required; usually it is self-explanatory - for example, breading, crusts, etc. or simply where I’ve elected to omit it in a recipe.  The other thing, too, is that many recipes will be fine without gelatin.  Sometimes I simply forget to add it and it works!

Cookies: Often cookies do not require gelatin.  If you notice on my blog or Facebook or in this book that I have a cookie recipe without gelatin, it simply means it worked without. Keep number of eggs called for in cookie recipes the same and follow the instructions for replacing flour with the bake mix. Cookies will usually be somewhat fragile immediately out of the oven.  Allow to cool completely on the cookie sheet and using a thin metal spatula, place cookies in a container for the freezer or refrigerator (separate with wax or parchment paper).

Alternatives for Oat Flour, Almond Flour and Coconut Flour:  If you are intolerant to certified gluten-free oat flour (could be the avenin), substitute some other gluten-free flour like sorghum flour, which others have had success with in the bake mix. Other ideas: quinoa flour (a seed not a grain works very well, however, it might have a strong taste – try Bob’s Red Mill® and toasting the flour first to create a mild taste and store in the freezer), Carbalose flour, Spelt flour (weak and a different gluten to wheat), Einkorn flour, an ancient, healthy wheat (last three are not gluten-free – available at Netrition.com or Amazon).  I like the health profile of oat flour (it makes up a small portion of the bake mix and helps our baking taste more normal), as it lowers cholesterol very effectively. It now turns out that oat flour is actually Paleo, as ancient stones were analyzed and oat flour remnants were discovered. Instead of almond flour, use sunflower seed flour (baking soda will turn baked goods greenish; use baking powder) or hazelnut flour. Others have tried pumpkin seed flour: here. Instead of coconut flour, use golden flax seed meal or possibly oat fiber.  You could experiment with half oat flour and half oat fiber.  

To sit down to a bowl of oats for most of us is no longer something we can do, however, using the bake mix with the oat flour diluted by twice the amount of almond flour, the insulin response in a small portion of a recipe will be much less than sitting down to a bowl of oats, which is not recommended for most of us with insulin resistance, weight issues, or just simply being older.  

Helpful Hints:  I buy NOW® Brand gelatin in a 1 lb (0.45 kg) bag from Netrition.com. One can use regular, store-bought, unflavored gelatin instead. If substituting this bake mix for some of my other more robust bake mixes, then 2 tbsp (30 mL) to 1/4 cup (60 mL) more of this bake mix will be required depending if one is replacing less than 1 cup (250 mL) or 1 cup (250 mL) or more (last 2, latter amount).  Follow same rules.  It is convenient to double, triple or quadruple the bake mix. Almond meal:  sliced almonds or blanched almonds ground in a coffee bean grinder (it is coarser than almond flour). Honeyville Grains makes the best almond flour at a good price – available online in bulk).  I keep mine in large, sealable plastic bags in the freezer or refrigerator.  I buy 25 lbs at a time.

*If you are using the gelatin application for my recipes that use the original Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix 1, page 241, it should be a straight exchange, however, you can make small adjustments with more bake mix or liquid.

I usually keep my bake mix in the container shown above.  We have a hot and humid climate and we don't use air conditioning other than in the one bedroom.  It normally is fine at room temperature in the airtight container for at least a month .  If I need to store leftovers for longer, I freeze it and typically use that for "breading" veggies and fish, etc., as usually I don't have a lot to freeze.  However, after thawing completely and shaking it in your container to mix well, it should be good to go for baking.  I have also used it straight out of the freezer - somehow with the other ingredients in the bake mix, it typically doesn't form clumps, which almond flour on its own has a tendency to do when frozen (just use your food processor (use the pulse button) to process briefly to get rid of clumps).


Yield:   21/2 cups (625 mL)
1/4 cup (60 mL) per serving
125.0 calories
4.5 g protein
8.9 g fat

5.7 g net carbs


Why the small amount of oat flour over time should help lower cholesterol:  READ ABOUT IT HERE

The virtues of my bake mix - READ ABOUT IT HERE

NOTE:  If you would like to use this bake mix, but for whatever reason your body does not tolerate xanthan gum well (my hubby!), then please visit SPLENDID GLUTEN-FREE BAKE MIX 2.  That is my preference these days.  The bake mixes are interchangeable.  You can use one or the other in the recipes.

Quote from a fan, a nurse by profession: "I am a 20g or less low carber. Live in ketosis. I use Jen's bake mix often and never have any problems, never go over on my carbs, never knocks me out of ketosis. And it has opened up a whole world of amazing dishes, from low carb breads/rolls, even to veggie dishes (ie yellow squash casserole). Look at her carb counts per serving, very low...

When people go low carb, they give up a lot, (of course they gain so much more)...you are right in that the bake mix gives baked goods a feel, taste, and texture that is closer to mainstream baked goods, and does it with VERY little carbs. Nut flours are nice, but a bit heavy, and excess nuts are also not a good idea. Coconut flour is really nice and light, but you gotta use a million eggs! Lol!!! So this very low carb bake mix can help win a lot of folks over to low carbing and a healthier way of life by giving them something that seems close to what they are used to. Ok. Climbing off my soap box now! Lol!

For those that don't have a particular intolerance to oat, it is a very small amount and would still allow a person to stay low carb. She uses the gluten free oat flour. I don't particularly eat the oat for the cholesterol benefits, because low carbing in general will provide all the help with cholesterol you will need. I think most people in the grain free world view wheat as the real culprit. I am completely wheat and gluten free by choice. (I have no food allergies or intolerances.) Yet after carefully reviewing Jen's recipes and carb counts using the bake mixes, I gave it a try. I love the bake mix! And as I said, I keep at 20g or below and stay in continual ketosis. Can't get much more low carb than that. So as long as a person doesn't have a specific intolerance to oats, I encourage all to try!"

NOTE:  Some people have tummy issues with xanthan gum.  My Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2 is the answer to that problem.  It uses unflavored, unsweetened gelatin.

My Alternate Bake Mixes (not gluten-free): When substituting the Splendid Gluten-Free bake mix for some of my other bake mixes, 2 tbsp (30 mL) to 1/cup (60 mL) more bake mix may be required depending on if one is replacing less than 1 cup (250 mL) or 1 cup (250 mL) or more (last 2, latter amount).  Follow the same rules above.  It is convenient to double or triple this bake mix.  See blog post on this recipe for more information or updates: low-carb-news.blogspot.com


Oat flour and almond flour in the gluten-free bake mix are both proven heart-healthy ingredients. Oat flour reduces cholesterol.  Arrowhead Mills Oat flour is used in the nutritional analysis as well as ground almonds (made using sliced almonds and a Cusinart coffee grinder, 18-cup capacity, although these days they have one specifically for grinding nuts and seeds) versus almond flour as that is what was used in the bake mix. http://store.honeyvillegrain.com/search.aspx?find=almond+flour

(Honeyville Grains) is the very best blanched almond flour available at a good price. With regard to oats and insulin spikes – remember if it was pure oat flour, it would be a problem, but since the oat flour is a small amount diluted in a large amount of almond flour and a bit of coconut flour, the glycemic load (which is more important than glycemic index) is a lot lower and, therefore, the insulin response would be a lot lower, but everyone is different. The coconut flour, oat flour and xanthan gum provide fiber which is heart-healthy as well as helps stabilize blood sugar.  Compare the heart-healthy Splendid Gluten-Free Bake mix with bleached all-purpose flour which contains alloxan, a chemical used to induce diabetes in lab rats, let alone the gliadin,which is a protein in wheat that stimulates the appetite for more . 1/cup (60 mL) white flour = 24 g carbs and compare 1/cup (60 mL) Gluten-Free Bake Mix = 5.7 g carbs (Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix is 4 times less carby than white flour!).  This bake mix may be used in place of Jennifer’s other bake mixes in most recipes.  See instructions below recipe. What to do with leftover bake mix?  Visit http://low-carb-news.blogspot.com (RHS) to find suggestions.


NOTE:

One sweet lady shared with me recently in comments under the Banana Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting - love comments like this! :)  I hope she doesn't mind me sharing.

"Good to know I can keep a smaller batch right on the counter.  I'm in Georgia/USA and it's hot and humid here.  I buy 25 lbs of blanched almond flour from Honeyville Grain. I break it down into large freezer bags and freeze most of it.  It saves me money to buy it in bulk.  We have an extra refrigerator in our garage so that helps.  I usually mix up 4x - 5x your GF bake mix.  Shake it up, dip my measuring cup into the mix and level it off with the back of a knife.  It's been no-fail.  I'm baking one or two of your recipes each week.  Your GF baked goods go into my kids lunchboxes each day so we really appreciate all that you do to bring us these wonderful recipes!"

"I cooked these bars this morning.  They browned beautifully and smell divine.  Easy to make as I always keep a large tupperware container full of your GF bake mix in my fridge. Just give it a good shake and I'm ready to bake.  Instead of cream cheese frosting, I covered them with your Chocolate Ganache recipe from Low Carbing Among Friends as my husband and kids are chocolate lovers.  We've been enjoying the new cookbook so much.  Thanks!"

SUPPORT YOUR TEAMbuy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks: low-carb.us/SALE.go


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


SPLENDID GLUTEN-FREE, LOW-CARB BAKE MIX 1 - AS SEEN IN UPDATED LOW-CARBING AMONG FRIENDS' COOKBOOKS



SPLENDID GLUTEN-FREE BAKE MIX 1
Almond flour versus almond meal (ground almonds) produces slight differences.  We used to use oat flour by Arrowhead Mills®, but see below for certified gluten-free.  This was my first bake mix which I have pretty much abandoned in favor of Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2.  However, if you prefer the Bake Mix 1, it is interchangeable with Bake Mix 2 that uses gelatin instead of xanthan gum (as long as the recipe actually has gelatin in it...there will be differences with recipes that don't include gelatin, obviously, as xanthan gum and gelatin both thicken the batter a bit, plus the real reason for these ingredients is to prevent crumbly outcomes...they bind all the components of the bake mix together).  This is the updated version as seen in revised copies of our Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks.  Volumes 1, 3 and 4 have been revised and are organized by category, instead of by author.  They have lots of lovely photos.  Volume 5 also has photos and is organized by category.  Volume 2 and 5 are the next books that are being revised.  I am hoping to have a new cookbook one of these days in addition to Kindle books (my recipes only with perhaps a few from each of the team of Low-Carbing Among Friends).

Note:  I used to use almond meal (using sliced almonds and a coffee bean grinder), but these days I feel enormously blessed to be able to order 25 lbs of the best almond flour ever from Honeyville Grains online).

Almond flour versus almond meal (ground almonds) produces slight differences.  We use the nutritional analysis of oat flour by Arrowhead Mills®, however, use certified gluten-free Bob's Red Mill Oat flour if you are extremely sensitive to gluten or have Celiac disease.  Instead of xanthan gum or gelatin (in my Bake Mix 2), I believe one could use ground chia seeds (needs to be added to the wet ingredients).  I need to explore that idea a bit, but you're welcome to add a bit of that instead of the xanthan gum or the gelatin.  Most recipes should be fine with 1/4 to 1/2 tsp of ground chia seeds...depending on how much bake mix is used in the recipe. Here is more about chia seeds for some interesting reading. 

Surprising health benefits of oat flour.  Many people anti-grains these days and I personally believe it's not necessary to throw the baby out with the bath water, so to speak.  There are some grains that are beneficial, oat flour being one of them.  Obviously, some people are very sensitive to any carbohydrates, so proceed cautiously with the bake mix (however, if you look at my baking, recipes are all suitably low-carb).  Please do avoid white flour and other highly processed flours and definitely avoid sugar.  On that topic, there are some breakthrough ideas re pasta and rice and how they can be consumed more safely.  Check out this thread on lowcarbfriends.com 

Here is a lady who has celiac disease talking about how she can still enjoy oat flour.

LATEST NEWS: OATS ARE PALEO!  CHECK OUT THE ARTICLE - CLICK HERE!

It is imperative to use Bob’s Red Mill coconut flour for all my recipes requiring coconut flour!  Coconut flours differ in their ability to absorb moisture and that will affect the recipes.

12/3  cups almond meal, OR (400 mL; 182 g)
  almond flour – yield is greater with
  almond flour by up to 1/2 cup (125 mL) more,
  so then carbs would be 4.8 g – bonus!
3/4  cup certified GF oat flour (175 ml; 100 g)
  (Bob’s Red Mill®, not Legacy Valley®)
2 tbsp sifted coconut flour, (30 mL) 
  (Bob’s Red Mill®)
3/4  tsp xanthan gum (3 mL)

In large bowl, combine almond meal (ground almonds), OR almond flour, oat flour (can substitute gluten-free sorghum flour, which others have had success with in the bake mix – see other ideas with Bake Mix 2, page 242), coconut flour and xanthan gum.  In container with airtight lid, place bake mix and shake well to combine.  When measuring oat flour, make sure to tap the cup on the counter top and fill to the top to get the correct yield for the bake mix.  Keep bake mix at room temperature for one month or freeze for much longer storage.

Instructions for standard recipes:  Add 1/4 cup (60 mL) additional bake mix when substituting for 1 cup (250 mL) or more than 1 cup (250 mL) flour and use 2 tbsp (30 mL) more if substituting for less than 1 cup (250 mL).  Always begin by adding an extra egg in muffins, loaves, cakes and coffee cakes, except for cookies, and except if bake mix required is less than or equal to 1 cup (250 mL).  Withhold 1/4 cup (60 mL) of liquid or fat ingredients; add in as needed (usually need it all). If batter after processing at least a minute is still too thick, add more of the wet ingredients, and if accidentally the batter ends up too sloppy, then add a little more bake mix. If all the liquid has been used and the batter is still too stiff, add another egg and another if necessary. Baking experience is helpful. 

Helpful Hints:  Great in muffins, loaves (with eggs!), cookies, scones, squares, coffee cakes, many cakes, pie crusts and a few other specialized applications, but will not be suitable for all applications, nor for most yeast applications.  Xanthan gum has gluten-like properties, binding ingredients together to prevent crumbly outcomes.  To substitute this bake mix for some of my earlier bake mixes (not gluten-free), 2 tbsp (30 mL) to 1/4 cup (60 mL) more bake mix may be required depending on if one is replacing less than 1 cup (250 mL) or 1 cup (250 mL) or more (last 2, latter amount). It is convenient to double, triple or quadruple this bake mix.  Gluten-Free Bake Mix 1 and 2 seem to be interchangeable.   

I usually keep my bake mix in the container shown above.  We have a hot and humid climate and we don't use air conditioning other than in the one bedroom.  It normally is fine at room temperature in the airtight container for at least a month .  If I need to store leftovers for longer, I freeze it and typically use that for "breading" veggies and fish, etc., as usually I don't have a lot to freeze.  However, after thawing completely and shaking it in your container to mix well, it should be good to go for baking.  I have also used it straight out of the freezer - somehow with the other ingredients in the bake mix, it typically doesn't form clumps, which almond flour on its own has a tendency to do when frozen (just use your food processor (use the pulse button) to process briefly to get rid of clumps).

Alternatives for Oat Flour, Almond Flour and Coconut Flour:  If you are intolerant to certified gluten-free oat flour (could be the avenin), substitute some other gluten-free flour like sorghum flour, which others have had success with in the bake mix. Other ideas: quinoa flour (a seed not a grain works very well, however, it might have a strong taste – try Bob’s Red Mill® and toasting the flour first to create a mild taste and store in the freezer), Carbalose flour, Spelt flour (weak and a different gluten to wheat), Einkorn flour, an ancient, healthy wheat (last three are not gluten-free – available at Netrition.com or Amazon).  I like the health profile of oat flour (it makes up a small portion of the bake mix and helps our baking taste more normal), as it lowers cholesterol very effectively. It now turns out that oat flour is actually Paleo, as ancient stones were analyzed and oat flour remnants were discovered. Instead of almond flour, use sunflower seed flour (baking soda will turn baked goods greenish; use baking powder) or hazelnut flour. Instead of coconut flour, use golden flax seed meal or possibly oat fiber.  You could experiment with half oat flour and half oat fiber in the bake mix.

Yield:   21/2 cups (625 mL)
1/4 cup (60 mL) per serving
125.7 calories
4.5 g protein
8.9 g fat
5.7 g net carbs



Why the small amount of oat flour over time should help lower cholesterol:  READ ABOUT IT HERE

The virtues of my bake mix - READ ABOUT IT HERE

NOTE:  If you would like to use this bake mix, but for whatever reason your body does not tolerate xanthan gum well (my hubby!), then please visit SPLENDID GLUTEN-FREE BAKE MIX 2.  That is my preference these days.  The bake mixes are interchangeable.  You can use one or the other in the recipes.

Quote from a fan, a nurse by profession: "I am a 20g or less low carber. Live in ketosis. I use Jen's bake mix often and never have any problems, never go over on my carbs, never knocks me out of ketosis. And it has opened up a whole world of amazing dishes, from low carb breads/rolls, even to veggie dishes (ie yellow squash casserole). Look at her carb counts per serving, very low...

When people go low carb, they give up a lot, (of course they gain so much more)...you are right in that the bake mix gives baked goods a feel, taste, and texture that is closer to mainstream baked goods, and does it with VERY little carbs. Nut flours are nice, but a bit heavy, and excess nuts are also not a good idea. Coconut flour is really nice and light, but you gotta use a million eggs! Lol!!! So this very low carb bake mix can help win a lot of folks over to low carbing and a healthier way of life by giving them something that seems close to what they are used to. Ok. Climbing off my soap box now! Lol!

For those that don't have a particular intolerance to oat, it is a very small amount and would still allow a person to stay low carb. She uses the gluten free oat flour. I don't particularly eat the oat for the cholesterol benefits, because low carbing in general will provide all the help with cholesterol you will need. I think most people in the grain free world view wheat as the real culprit. I am completely wheat and gluten free by choice. (I have no food allergies or intolerances.) Yet after carefully reviewing Jen's recipes and carb counts using the bake mixes, I gave it a try. I love the bake mix! And as I said, I keep at 20g or below and stay in continual ketosis. Can't get much more low carb than that. So as long as a person doesn't have a specific intolerance to oats, I encourage all to try!"

NOTE:  Some people have tummy issues with xanthan gum.  My Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2 is the answer to that problem.  It uses unflavored, unsweetened gelatin.

My Alternate Bake Mixes (not gluten-free): When substituting the Splendid Gluten-Free bake mix for some of my other bake mixes, 2 tbsp (30 mL) to 1/cup (60 mL) more bake mix may be required depending on if one is replacing less than 1 cup (250 mL) or 1 cup (250 mL) or more (last 2, latter amount).  Follow the same rules above.  It is convenient to double or triple this bake mix.  See blog post on this recipe for more information or updates: low-carb-news.blogspot.com


Oat flour and almond flour in the gluten-free bake mix are both proven heart-healthy ingredients. Oat flour reduces cholesterol.  Arrowhead Mills Oat flour is used in the nutritional analysis as well as ground almonds (made using sliced almonds and a Cusinart coffee grinder, 18-cup capacity, although these days they have one specifically for grinding nuts and seeds) versus almond flour as that is what was used in the bake mix. http://store.honeyvillegrain.com/search.aspx?find=almond+flour

(Honeyville Grains) is the very best blanched almond flour available at a good price. With regard to oats and insulin spikes – remember if it was pure oat flour, it would be a problem, but since the oat flour is a small amount diluted in a large amount of almond flour and a bit of coconut flour, the glycemic load (which is more important than glycemic index) is a lot lower and, therefore, the insulin response would be a lot lower, but everyone is different. The coconut flour, oat flour and xanthan gum provide fiber which is heart-healthy as well as helps stabilize blood sugar.  Compare the heart-healthy Splendid Gluten-Free Bake mix with bleached all-purpose flour which contains alloxan, a chemical used to induce diabetes in lab rats, let alone the gliadin,which is a protein in wheat that stimulates the appetite for more . 1/cup (60 mL) white flour = 24 g carbs and compare 1/cup (60 mL) Gluten-Free Bake Mix = 5.7 g carbs (Splendid Gluten-Free Bake Mix is 4 times less carby than white flour!).  This bake mix may be used in place of Jennifer’s other bake mixes in most recipes.  See instructions below recipe. What to do with leftover bake mix?  Visit http://low-carb-news.blogspot.com (RHS) to find suggestions.


NOTE:

One sweet lady shared with me recently in comments under the Banana Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting - love comments like this! :)  I hope she doesn't mind me sharing.

"Good to know I can keep a smaller batch right on the counter.  I'm in Georgia/USA and it's hot and humid here.  I buy 25 lbs of blanched almond flour from Honeyville Grain. I break it down into large freezer bags and freeze most of it.  It saves me money to buy it in bulk.  We have an extra refrigerator in our garage so that helps.  I usually mix up 4x - 5x your GF bake mix.  Shake it up, dip my measuring cup into the mix and level it off with the back of a knife.  It's been no-fail.  I'm baking one or two of your recipes each week.  Your GF baked goods go into my kids lunchboxes each day so we really appreciate all that you do to bring us these wonderful recipes!"

"I cooked these bars this morning.  They browned beautifully and smell divine.  Easy to make as I always keep a large tupperware container full of your GF bake mix in my fridge. Just give it a good shake and I'm ready to bake.  Instead of cream cheese frosting, I covered them with your Chocolate Ganache recipe from Low Carbing Among Friends as my husband and kids are chocolate lovers.  We've been enjoying the new cookbook so much.  Thanks!"

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

Friday, May 27, 2016

FUDGY FROSTED BROWNIES





FUDGY FROSTED BROWNIES
These were delicious!  These have been tested with both cocoa and Chatfield’s® premium carob powder.  A good quality carob powder makes a good substitute for cocoa and chocolate {1 oz chocolate would equal 3 tbsp of premium carob powder (45 mL) plus 1 tbsp(15 mL) butter}.  The frosting should not be optional for this recipe…together it makes for a special brownie.  In this particular instance I doubled the amount of carob powder for the frosting.  I’m not entirely sure if that was necessary, as in the refrigerator it became quite firm – good though! Carob powder is more carby than cocoa so it is only recommended if chocolate is something you cannot have due to allergies or migraines. This recipe does not need gelatin.
I'm so very happy with this recipe using carob powder....finally I have a part of my life back again!  It tastes like chocolate to me!!  Thank you to a special reader who suggested carob powder.  Now I need to try the unsweetened carob chips and see if I like them or not. 

3 eggs
3/4  cup butter, softened (175 mL)
Liquid sweetener  (sucralose or stevia) to equal 1 cup (250 mL)
  sugar
1/cup granulated erythritol, OR (125 mL)
  sweetener packets equivalent
11/tsp vanilla extract (7 mL)
3/4  cup Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2, (175 mL)
   PLUS 2 tbsp (30 mL)
1/cup carob powder, OR cocoa powder (125 mL)
1/tsp baking powder (2 mL)
1/tsp salt (1 mL)
Milk Chocolate Frosting:
1/cup unsalted butter* (60 mL)
  (if using chocolate use half the amount)
1/cup whole, OR skim milk powder (60 mL)
3 tbsp whipping cream, OR evaporated milk (more carby)
Liquid sweetener to equal 3/4  cup sugar (175 mL)
6 tbsp carob powder, OR (90 mL)
  1 square unsweetened Baker’s® chocolate, melted (1 oz; 30 g)
2 tbsp powdered erythritol, OR (30 mL)
  3 sweetener packets (the kind for coffee)
1 tbsp water (15 mL)
1 tsp olive oil (5 mL)
1/tsp vanilla extract (2 mL)

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). 

In food processor, process eggs.  Add butter, liquid sweetener, erythritol and vanilla extract; process.  In medium bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2, carob powder, OR cocoa, baking powder and salt.  Add to wet ingredients; process until smooth.  Turn out into a greased 8 or 9-inch (20 or 23 cm) baking dish.  Bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until knife inserted in brownies comes out clean.  Do not over-bake.  Allow to cool completely to room temperature.  Frost the brownies and refrigerate.  They are best once completely chilled or chilled and left at room temperature for 5 minutes.

Milk Chocolate Frosting:  In food processor, process butter, whole, OR skim milk powder, whipping cream, OR evaporated milk, liquid sweetener, carob powder, OR unsweetened Baker’s® chocolate, erythritol, OR sweetener packets, water, olive oil and vanilla extract; process.

Helpful Hint:  *I have used regular butter with the frosting before and it was fine.  

Yield:  25 servings
Carob/cocoa
120.1/107.1 calories
1.8/2.3 g protein
10.3/10.2 g fat
0.7/1.0 g fiber
3.6/1.8 g net carbs

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

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

CHEESY BACON RANCH DIP



CHEESY BACON RANCH DIP

Here is a dip you need to try.  Rich and the flavor is delightful due to the little bit of light beer added to it. However, if you prefer, you can use chicken stock instead.

16 oz regular cream cheese (500 g)
1/cup Ranch dressing (125 mL)
1/cup light beer (125 mL)
  (such as Miller Lite®), OR chicken stock, OR cream
1 tsp crushed garlic (5 mL)
2 cups grated Cheddar cheese (500 mL)
1 tbsp bacon fat (15 mL)
1 cup chopped onion (250 mL)
4 slices bacon, cooked crispy and chopped
  (reserve bacon fat)

In food processor, process cream cheese, Ranch dressing, light beer, OR chicken stock, OR cream and garlic.  Add Cheddar cheese; process.  Spread in a 2-qt (2 L) casserole dish.  Smooth the surface.

In frying pan, in bacon fat over medium heat, cook onion until caramelizing.

Cover dip with caramelized onion and chopped bacon bits. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until just before serving time.  Bake in 350°F (180°C) oven 15 to 20 minutes, or until bubbly and hot. 

Ranch Dressing, p. 61 Splendid Low-Carbing for Life, volume 2 or HERE (CLICK).

Yield: 16 servings
1 serving
197.2 calories
8.3 g protein
17.0 g fat
0.2 g fiber
2.4 g net carbs 


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Saturday, May 14, 2016

ZUCCHINI CRACKER-JACK SNACKS




 ZUCCHINI CRACKER-JACK SNACKS
These are most unusual and very moreish!  You can use them for dipping or for spreads.  You can serve them with ketchup, mayonnaise or sour cream to dip into.  I like to eat them plain. You can cook them less for a softer result, however, I like them as crispy as possible.  You have to try these!  The Jalapeno idea is something I got from Peggy Hardaway. It's not difficult to be inspired by Peggy.  The next day, my husband warms them up in the pan to crisp them again.  I find they are delicious spread with my healthy butter - see Helpful Hints below.

2/3  cup Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2, (150 mL)
2 oz grated Parmesan cheese (60 g)
  (the kind in a can)
1 tsp dried oregano (5 mL)
1/2  tsp dried basil (2 mL)
1/2  tsp black pepper (2 mL)
1/4  tsp salt (1 mL)
2 large eggs
1 tsp crushed garlic (5 mL)
  (bottled kind)
8 oz grated zucchini (250 g)
  (about 11/4  cups (300 mL)
1 small onion, peeled and grated (3 oz; 90 g)
1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese (250 mL)
Canned jalapenos (or fresh) for the center of some of them


Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).  Grease a cookie sheet and place a piece of parchment paper down (the greased side helps the parchment adhere to the cookie sheet).

In medium bowl, combine Gluten-Free Bake Mix 2, Parmesan cheese, oregano, basil, pepper and salt.

In small bowl, whisk eggs and garlic with a fork.  Add to dry ingredients and combine well.

Squeeze as much moisture as possible out of the grated zucchini and onion with your hands.  (I use a food processor to grate my vegetables)  Add to egg mixture; stir well to combine.  Stir in the grated Monterey Jack cheese.

Form tablespoonfuls of zucchini mixture and place on parchment paper.  Form flat ovals, spaced about 1-inch (2.5 cm) apart. Place a piece of jalapeno in the center of some of them. Bake 10 minutes, flip them and bake another 10 minutes, or until golden on both sides.  Leave in the oven until the oven is cool for the crispiest, cracker-like snack results.  However, they are great without drying them out further; I actually think I prefer them without making them too dry. As they cool they get crispier even without drying them out further – just not as crispy as they would be.  I love them spread with my Healthy Butter (spreadable) - CLICK for the recipe.

Yield:  6 servings (makes 36)
1 serving (6 each)
210.8 calories
13.4 g protein
14.6 g fat
0.6 g fiber
5.4 g net carbs

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