Category Archives: Recipes!

Recipe! Flatbread pizza.

Happy Friday!

Cliche alert: Like you, I’m always on the lookout for low-carb options of my favorite foods. Today, I’ll be showing you just how easy it is to make a tasty flatbread pizza. Not only is it low carb, it’s also about three dollars (or less) per pizza. Let’s begin:
 
 
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit. I’m still working on this; you can probably cook these a little lower, say around 350. The idea is to get all the ingredients cooked through while crisping up the flatbread, but not burning it. A little finesse is required. We’ve also done this on the grill, which requires a very low flame so you don’t burn the flatbread. Regardless, watch it like a hawk the first time.

Flatout-Flatbread

I started with flatbread from Flatout Bread. Good size, easy to use, fits on a cookie sheet. 16 grams of carbohydrates per flatbread. They come in a variety of options, including Garden Spinach and Sundried Tomato. I used the Italian Herb. FYI: Their website contains great recipes from other bloggers.

I like to put a very thin layer of olive oil on the bottom of my cookie sheet, along with some garlic powder or celery salt, to give the crust a little zing. Then I went to the refrigerator.

Ingredients

I just looked for anything that might taste good on a pizza. I found turkey deli meat (for Maureen), salami deli meat (for me), green onions, baby portabella mushrooms, and green olives. I also had some cherry tomatoes left from my garden.
 
 
Classico-Pizza-Sauce

We began the pizza build with Classico Fire Roasted Pizza Sauce. The nutrition label says that ¼ cup carries about 6 grams of carbohydrates, and that’s about the amount we used on each pizza. I’m also a big fan of basil on my pizza; we didn’t have fresh basil, but I sprinkled some dried basil flakes on top of the pizza sauce to give it an extra layer of flavor.

Then we just started piling on ingredients! One thing about the tomatoes: A lot of flavor is in the juice of tomatoes, but that extra liquid can really make your pizza soggy if you’re not careful. These cherry tomatoes worked fine, but we made sure to put them on top of the other ingredients. If you’re using something like a Roma tomato, slice it really thin and place each slice on a paper towel first. It won’t drain all of the liquid from the tomato, but keeping the slices thin will keep from weighing everything down, while still giving you that tomato boost. Yes, I’m a fresh tomato addict.

Once we finished with our ingredients, all we needed was a little mozzarella cheese on top. Here’s a look at one pizza before the cheese and one after the cheese. Looks good, right?

Half
 
 
Well, they were even better when we took them out of the oven. Cook your pizza at 400 degrees for 5 to 5 ½ minutes. In our case, thanks to our 50 year old oven (literally), we needed to finish it off for 30 seconds or so under the broiler to brown the top a little bit.

Flatbread-Pizza

From start to finish, these two flatbread pizzas took about 15 minutes. It may not have taken that long to eat them.
 
 
Carbohydrate count: Let’s see… 16g for the flatbread, 6g for the pizza sauce, maybe 3g for anything else. That’s 25 grams of carbohydrates for everything you see in the photos! A regular store bought or pizzeria pizza of the same size would probably be three or four times that amount. Note: You might want to take the fat content of the cheese you use into consideration too.

Carb counts are estimates only. Check with a registered dietician to find out what a healthy carb count is for you.
 
 
Full Disclosure: I’m not getting anything from Flatout Bread or Classico for writing about their products. They are just what I used to make this pizza.
 
 
 

Recipe! Tomato Salad.

I had a really great ear of corn last weekend. The kind where it was just so sweet and creamy with just the right amount of butter and Old Bay seasoning (it’s a thing here). Of course, my BGs didn’t necessarily like the effect of a big fat ear of corn.

So the next day, even though I was grilling something again, I decided to think differently about a side dish. This one isn’t completely carb free… but it’s a lot less than an ear of corn, and don’t forget, tomatoes are just coming into their own in North America now too.

I started with a handful of small tomatoes, yellow and red, that I got from my local farm truck. And a few of my purple cherry tomatoes that are just starting to ripen.

I just sliced them in half and added about 2/3 olive oil and 1/3 red wine vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste (I also added Old Bay seasoning– I admit– I’m addicted). Then I thinly sliced some fresh basil and fresh mint. Again, about 2/3 basil, about 1/3 mint. No need to measure out all of this. Trust me… You’ll figure out the right proportions.

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If you want to add a few extra carbs, you could cube up a slice of bread, throw it in a pan with butter or olive oil (just a tiny bit), and add something like celery salt or garlic powder, or both. Blue cheese or parmesan cheese too. Or experiment– how about a little cumin or siracha sauce? No matter what, this is a super-easy, tasty side dish.

Carbohydrate count: In what you see in the photos, about 6 grams to 8 grams. If you add a few croutons, add about 14g – 18g depending on the type of bread you use.

Carb counts are estimates only. Check with a registered dietician to find out what a healthy carb count is for you.
 
 
 

Recipe! Cured fish with tequila.

Lots of pictures in this post today… I’ll try to do this recipe justice.

Living where I live today is different from anywhere else I’ve lived. I grew up catholic, way back in the old days when I used to go to mass all the time. However, the neighborhood I live in now has a high concentration of Jewish Americans, as well as Russian Jews and Polish, African, and, you get the idea. Over time, I’ve been lucky enough to make lots of friends in this part of the world, which means I’ve been invited to breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and everything in between by people who are as friendly as can be. Often, there’s some kind of cured or smoked fish on the menu. Not a big deal, right? Unless you’re used to eating beef and pork all the time. There’s a huge difference between a meat-and-potatoes Midwestern diet like I grew up with, and a Mediterranean-influenced Kosher diet.

But I’ve gotta admit… some of the food I’ve been exposed to has been awesome. Like the gravlax that I put together the other day. This isn’t a Kosher-exclusive dish, to be sure, but had I not been exposed to the influences I’ve been exposed to here, I probably never would have tried this. And I love it!

You’re going to find this is a very easy recipe, and one you can vary according to what’s on hand in your pantry and what you really like. If you close it up tightly after it’s cured, you can probably keep it in the fridge for four or five days.

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I started with a ¾ pound filet. What you see was labeled as steelhead trout, but you might also see it as freshwater salmon in places. You’ll also need a deep dish, and a brick or something weighty to place on top of the fish while it cures. For my recipe, I included:

½ cup of kosher salt

1 tablespoon celery salt

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon dill (fresh is best, but I used dried because that’s what I had)

1 tablespoon McCormick’s® Grill Mates® mesquite seasoning

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Tequila

Basically, you mix all of the dry ingredients, then add the olive oil and tequila until you have what seems like a dry paste. If you think your mixture is too wet, just add some more dry ingredients.

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Now it’s time to get your hands dirty. Put your fish in your deep dish… this is where it will sit for a couple of days. Take your mixture and rub it over your fish. Make sure the mixture covers every single inch of the surface of the fish. If you don’t have enough to cover the fish, make more.

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Once the fish is covered in your seasonings, wrap everything up. First in plastic, then in foil. Again, make sure the entire surface of the fish is covered. Place the fish in your refrigerator, and then place your “something weighty” on top. We used a brick from our landscaping outside, and wrapped it in foil. This helps your spices to really get into your fish, and it helps with the curing process too.

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Then the hard part starts. Because you have to wait 48 hours to unwrap everything and dig in. Don’t be surprised if some of the liquid drains from the fish during this time. That’s normal, and it’s why you have it in a deep dish.

Once your 48 hours are up, get the dish out of the refrigerator and uncover everything. If you have to, use a paper towel to remove any leftover moisture.

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I love bagels, but I don’t love what they do to my BGs, so I mostly avoid them. Instead, I opt for small crackers for my lox. I thinly slice the fish, then put it on the cracker with a little cheese (provolone in this case, because… that’s what I had), and maybe some tomato. If I can make some sort of swanky mustard sauce for it, I might do that too, but that’s a matter of personal taste. Anyway, the recipe turned out great, and I’m looking forward to enjoying this for the next few days, and sharing it too.

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So there you have it. Good for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Sorry I don’t have a carb count; any carbs come primarily from the tablespoon of brown sugar in the spice mix, so it can’t be too much.

I hope you get a chance to make this recipe too. It’s a great example of something that’s easy, but tasty. Enjoy!
 
 
 

Recipe! Alternative salad.

We had sliders for dinner the other night. Or, in my case, slider. One is enough for me to feel full anymore, even though the taste is quite satisfying. It’s the carbohydrates in the bun that turn me off. Once in a while, I’ll have a second, without the bun.

Anyway, this isn’t about the sliders. It’s about the salad I made as a go-with for this meal. If you’re looking to make semi-lifestyle changes in the new year, a salad is a great way to replace something like french fries with something that’s more healthy, yet still filling.

My recipe is for a salad that’s a little different. Lettuce is not the main ingredient. I remember seeing Jamie Oliver doing something like this on TV a while back, but I’ve lost track of where and when. It’s a great change of pace when you’re sick of chopping up the lettuce and throwing something familiar on top. It’s actually a really great summer salad, but it works this time of year if you can find ingredients that you like.

I started with a large plate. It helps me to do this on a large plate first, but you can do it in a bowl too. Just give yourself enough space to work with without damaging the delicateness of all of the ingredients.

The recipe begins with a large carrot and a large stalk of celery. Then I got out my peeler. For a recipe like this, it helps to have a sharp peeler. But if you don’t have a sharp one, a little elbow grease will help you get the job done. Just give it a little effort.

I peeled the carrot and celery, then got out a couple of green onions (also known as scallions). I chopped the scallions in half, then sliced each half very thinly lengthwise. Once that was complete, I thinly sliced a medium-sized radish. I also added a little chopped-up red cabbage. Then I chopped some fresh cilantro to help add another layer of flavor. Oh, and I added some tomato too (campari tomatoes, quartered, if you want to know). I love tomatoes, and I almost never go without them on my salad.

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I made a lemon vinagrette to mix in with all of this. The lemon helped to mellow the strong flavors of the radish and cilantro. I’m not including the lemon vinagrette recipe… it’s basically red wine vinegar, some olive oil, and the juice from half a lemon. Add in salt and pepper to taste, if you like. So there. I did give you the recipe.

Okay… where was I? I added the lemon vinagrette, made sure my hands were clean, and gently tossed everything together. Sometimes you just have to get your hands messy. I used a large leaf from a head of romaine lettuce as a bed for the salad, and placed everything on top. What do you think?

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Total estimated carb count: I have no idea, really. I know there’s a little bit in the carrot, a little in the tomato, and a little in the lemon vinagrette. I’m gonna guess it’s 8g per serving, but that’s just a shot in the dark.

Making this salad was a fun experience, it was easy, it was quick. Next time you’re staring in the fridge dreading another salad, or if you’re looking for a super alternative to something more carby, this may be your answer.

Carb counts are estimates only. Check with a registered dietician to find out what a healthy carb count is for you.
 
 
 

Recipe! Roasted Turkey Thighs.

This is not my own recipe… But it’s now mine in the respect that I’ll be going back to this one for some time.

Truth be told, there are two recipes not mine that are now mine in this post. Each with my own spin, based on what I had available at the time of preparation.

First, let’s talk about the salad. I saw Nigella Lawson do something like this on TV, then I added my own twist to it:

Begin with a couple of leaves of red leaf lettuce, then use fresh parsley for the rest of your greens. To that, I added little half-moon slices of red oinion, green olives, and thinly sliced peaches. On top I added some feta cheese. I served it with a peppery lemon vinaigrette (it sounds a lot fancier than it is), and it was delicious.

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Now, let’s talk turkey.

There was a sale on turkey thighs at the grocery store. I am not a turkey person, never have been. But The Great Spousal Unit is most definitely a turkey person, and I wanted to do something nice. Since I had never cooked turkey before (true), I went searching on the internet for an easy, but good looking recipe. I found it here. I only deviated slightly in the ingredients. The link has the recipe and some great in-progress photos, but if you don’t want to click over there, here’s the recipe, with the finished product below.

Herb Roasted Turkey Thighs Recipe

2 turkey thighs
A handful of garlic (I used 3 cloves), peeled
A handful of pearl onions, peeled (I didn’t have pearl onions, so I went with about half a red onion)
4 small potatoes, cut into chunks (I used two small-to-medium potatoes)
2 cups unsalted chicken broth
2 sprigs of sage
2 sprigs of rosemary
2 sprigs of parsley
2 bay leaves
a sprinkle of olive oil
salt & pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400°F. Let turkey thighs sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before cooking.
Gather a few leaves from each herb sprig and finely chop to make about 2 teaspoons each. Rub chopped herbs onto each side of the turkey thighs along with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Place thighs skin side down in a deep roasting pan. Bake for about 30 minutes.

Turn thighs over, then add potatoes, pearl onions, garlic, bay leaves and herb sprigs. Pour in broth and sprinkle all with a little more salt & pepper, then drizzle some olive oil on top. Roast for another 30-40 minutes, until thighs are done and potatoes are tender. Stir the potatoes once during roasting. Remove pan from oven, let thighs and potatoes sit covered with foil for about 20 minutes before serving. Place turkey and vegetables on a serving platter.

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Estimated carb count: 30 grams (though you might want to account for a little fat, since turkey thighs have a little more than say, breast meat)

Believe me, this tasted as good as it looks. If you luck into a sale like I did, this is a super autumn meal, even if you ditch the potatoes and just go for the salad and turkey.

 
 
 

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