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Archive for the ‘Bacon & Other Meats’ Category

What a tasty surprise!  I’m a bachelorette for the day and had not yet washed the skillet I fried bacon in this morning.  So I thought I’d stir-fry me a quick lunch of smoked sausage and cabbage.  I had just made a fresh batch of my Sofrito for freezer keeping and was smitten with the idea of breaking off a little piece from my freezer block and putting a little in my lunch skillet.  What a great idea this turned out to be! And what a simple, quick meal to prepare on a week night when you come home from work really tired.

Earlier in the week I had pulled off the outer leaves of a cabbage for stuffing but changed my mind.  So I wanted to use those leaves up quickly before they dried out.  This final dish turned out to be delicious and much better than I anticipated!  But then I really just love this Sofrito and use it on/in so many different recipes now.  If you like it, you’ll become addicted to the stuff, I’m certain. Haven’t used it in or on anything to date I didn’t like.  This recipe is naturally Atkins Induction friendly and suitable for Keto, Paleo and Primal lifestyles.

INGREDIENTS:

8 medium cabbage leaves, stemmed & sliced ½” (or equivalent)

8 oz. Burton’s Smoked Sausage (or other brand), sliced ¼”

2 tsp. bacon grease

2 T. my Sofrito

VARIATION:  Use halved small red radishes or daikon radish slices instead of cabbage

DIRECTIONS:  Cut cabbage and sausage as instructed above.  Add bacon grease to a skillet and head on medium-high.  Add sausage to the pan and brown slices on both sides lightly.  Add cabbage and stir-fry a few minutes until cabbage begins to soften.  Add the sofrito herb mixture and continue stir-frying until cabbage is done to your liking. Serve at once.

NUTRITIONAL INFO:   Makes 2 servings, each contains:

350 cals, 27g fat, 6.2g carbs, 2.55g fiber, 3.65g NET CARBS, 23.4g protein, 1050 mg sodium (reduce sausage to reduce sodium)

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I was craving some good old sausage cheese balls for lunch today, but realized I’m out of bulk breakfast sausage.  But I did have a 6-oz. piece of smoked sausage in the fridge.  Wasn’t sure how all that would bind together with the change in meat, so I added 2 eggs, some cream and baked my ball-shaped lunch in to Twinkie® shapes instead.  Wow!  These were amazingly good, and not at all heavy like one would think.  I ate 3 of these things and am pleasantly full.  My husband won’t be home from Waco until dinner, so I’ll let him try them for a late snack perhaps.  I just KNOW he’s going to love these delicious treats!

Our latest three volumes of LOW CARBING AMONG FRIENDS cookbooks are calling you.  Volume 8 and Volume 9 are almost exclusively comprised of my recipes!  Included in both editions are a few tasty new creations of my dear friends George Stella and Jennifer Eloff.   Volume 10 is hot off the press with more delectable goodies.  Special prices going on right now!  Hurry and place your order today for one or more of our cookbooks at https://amongfriends.us/sale.php or at Amazon.  After your book(s) arrive, and you’ve had a chance to try a recipe, do stop by and leave a review at Amazon here.

INGREDIENTS:

2 c. Carbquik Bake Mix (or other low-carb mix)Smoked Sausage Twinkies (2)

1 c. shredded Cheddar cheese

6 oz. Burton’s Smoked Sausage (or any brand you have), chopped

2 large eggs, beaten

½ c. heavy cream

VARIATION:  Add a little minced green onion to the batter.

DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 350º.  Using a brush, oil a non-stick twinkie-shape pan (12-slot).  I used a food processor to chop up my sausage, but you could finely dice with a knife if you prefer.  Scrape into a medium bowl.  Add all other ingredients and stir until uniformly moistened and blended.  Spoon the stiff batter into the 12 slots of the twinkie pan.  Batter will be nearly to the top of each slot.  Slightly press batter down to eliminate air holes.    Pop into 350º oven for 18-20 minutes or until lightly browned as shown above.  Remove from oven.  Cool 3-4 minutes before attempting to loosen and lift out of the pan of they may break apart.  Serve warm and enjoy!

NUTRITIONAL INFO:   Makes 12 Twinkies®, each contains:

123 cals, 11.2g fat, 4.81g carbs, 3.5g fiber, 1.31g NET CARBS, 7.46g protein, 296 mg sodium

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Sausage Tarragon Cream on Toast

It’s what I had for breakfast today!  This dish evolved from my Eggs with Tarragon Cream recipe but I added some sausage.  This is Atkins Induction friendly and a tasty change of pace for breakfast when you just don’t feel like eggs.  My husband scrambled up an egg and placed on his toast before adding his gravy mix.  Nice variation on a theme.  This dish is also good as a lunch or evening meal served alongside a lovely green salad.  It truly is one of my favorite breakfasts!  This one is Atkins Induction Friendly, too!

INGREDIENTS:

2 Revolution Rolls (also known as Oopsie Rolls or Cloud Bread)

4 oz. pork breakfast sausage, browned (or whatever brand you prefer that has minimal sugar added)

1/3 c. green onion, chopped

1 Roma tomato, coarsely chopped

¼ tsp. dried tarragon (or ½-1 tsp. fresh)

Dash salt and black pepper

¼ c. heavy cream

1 c. water

DIRECTIONS:  Brown sausage in non-stick skillet over medium-high heat..  Add chopped green onion and chopped tomato and saute until onion is softening a bit and the tomato is just barely beginning to soften, but is not cooked to mush.  Lower heat to low.  Add seasonings, cream and water.  Simmer to thicken.  If not thick enough to suit your preference, sprinkle a tiny bit of your favorite thickener and stir until it has thickened up.  Toast the Revo Rolls and spoon the sausage cream over the toasted rolls and serve at once.

VARIATION:   Add scrambled egg before topping with sausage gravy. 

NUTRITIONAL INFO: Makes two servings, each contains (not including egg):

330 Cals, 26.7g fat, 4.3g carbs, 0.8g fiber, 3.5g NET CARBS, 17.5g protein, 522 mg sodium

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livers002

Southern girl that I am, I get a hankering for fried chicken liver every once in awhile and today was my day.  This is not a food I’ve tried to low-carb before now.  Frankly, I didn’t think they would come out very good without the crispy traditional flour coating they are often made with. My grocery store has taken to carrying their chicken livers in a huge 1.25# cartons instead of the 1# carton they have stocked in the past.  My husband doesn’t like chicken liver, so I alone (or my puppies are most eager to) must polish off any leftovers.  So it looks like I’m going to have 5-6 oz. leftover every time I bake my homemade dog treats with the size carton they sell them in now.  Now I have a way to quell my fried chicken liver craving that crops up once in awhile.

Since this coating has worked well on everything I’ve tried it on to date, I thought I’d give it a go and these came out REAL good!!  These are suitable for any phase of Atkins.  They are also suitable for Paleo-Primal, if you occasionally eat pork rinds (otherwise, coat with almond flour).

VARIATION:  Add some grated Parmesan cheese to the coating.

INGREDIENTS:

5 oz. raw chicken livers

½ c. homemade mayo

4 oz. plain pork rinds, crushed fine

1/4 tsp. spice blend of your choice (I used my Cajun Seafood Spice blend)

DIRECTIONS:  Preheat oven to 425º.  Place chicken livers on paper toweling and pat them with more paper towels to get as much moisture off as you can. Cut the really large ones in half for more even cooking.  Pour mayo onto a paper plate.  Place crushed rinds and spices onto a second paper plate and stir well.  Dip livers into the mayo to coat both sides, then drop into crushed rinds.  I curl the paper plate to facilitate rolling the rinds up over the tops of the livers.  Place coated livers onto a non-stick sided cookie sheet.   Pop into 425º oven for 10 minutes.  Turn gently with tongs and cook an additional 10 minutes.  They should be done in 20 minutes and browned nicely on both sides.  Enjoy quickly so they will still be crispy!  Serve with your favorite sides.

NUTRITIONAL INFO:   Makes 3 servings, each contains:

526 cals, 43g fat, 0.53g carbs, 0.03g fiber, 0.5 NET CARBS, 32.5 g  protein

488 mg sodium

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I recently bought some Palmini canned “noodles”, which are made from Hearts of Palm.  To date, I’ve only used Hearts of Palm in salads.  Some pickle them.  I tried them with a meaty Bolognese Italian meat sauce recently and didn’t much care for them that way as the taste of the Hearts of Palm came through in my final spaghetti.  But today I decided to experiment with them in a soup and this application was a success.  We both liked this soup.  Simple to put together, too.  Can’t wait to do a chicken noodle soup with these!  This recipe is suitable for all phases of Atkins and other Keto diets.  Paleo and Primal folks can enjoy this recipe, too!

Our latest three volumes of LOW CARBING AMONG FRIENDS cookbooks are calling you.  Volume 8 and Volume 9 are almost exclusively comprised of my recipes!  Included in both editions are a few tasty new creations of my dear friends George Stella and Jennifer Eloff.   Volume 10 is hot off the press with more delectable goodies.  EARLY BIRD SECRET SALE!!  Special pricing and limited-time free shipping so hurry and place your order today.  You can order these or any of our cookbooks at https://amongfriends.us/Secret-SALE.php.  When you purchase our books, we would sure appreciate you stopping by Amazon to leave a review here.

INGREDIENTS: 

1 lb. pork bulk breakfast sausage

3/4 c. celery, chopped

2 oz. onion, chopped

1 oz. red bell pepper, coarsely chopped

2 oz. green bell pepper, coarsely chopped

½ c. parsley, chopped

¼ tsp. my Seafood Spice Blend

1/8 tsp. coarse black pepper

¼ tsp. crushed dried thyme

1/4 tsp. Chipotle Tobasco Sauce (or 1/8 tsp. regular Tobasco)

1 Roma tomato, coarsely diced

3 c. chicken broth, (more if you like greater ratio liquid to solids in soup)

1  14-oz can Palmini “noodles”, drained & rinsed (I actually used 2/3 can)

DIRECTIONS:  Brown pork sausage in a 4 qt. saucepan or soup pot.  Add celery, onion, bell peppers and saute until the veggies begin to wilt.  Add all remaining ingredients but the noodles and bring to a low boil.  Lower heat to a simmer and cook 30-45 minutes or until flavors have developed.  Add noodles toward the end of cooking (earlier if you want them softer, last 5 minutes if you want them firmer or “al dente”).  Fat will eventually cook out of the sausage into the soup stock and give it a very deep, tasty flavor.  If you like more liquid in your soup, add a little more broth or a little bit of water and simmer a little longer.  Serve hot.  Leftovers should freeze well.

NUTRITIONAL INFO:   Makes 6 large bowls, each contains:

316 cals, 23g fat, 4.95g carbs, 2.88g fiber, 2.07g NET CARBS, 19.3g protein, 627 mg sodium

 

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Southwest Ham-n-Cheese Squash

Once again, the Queen of Leftovers creates a surprisingly delicious dish with a bit of “this and that” she has been staring at the last few days in the fridge.  One small piece of thick ham steak, half a spaghetti squash and an avocado getting way too ripe on my kitchen counter.  Just sounded like a Mexican meal in the making to me!  This creation sort of reminds me of Ham-Mac-and-Cheese.  But the generous handful of cilantro really takes it to a different flavor level.  For those that don’t like cilantro, just leave it out and sub in a little chili powder.  This dish will be nearly as good without it, I’m sure.

The Mexican Poinsettia stuck onto my guacamole was an afterthought, but I thought it came out very pretty!    I quartered 2 San Marzano tomatoes and 1 thin slice of jalapeno pepper for my flower.  This recipe is suitable for all phases of Atkins and other Ketogenic diets, but is not suitable for Primal-Paleo.

Our latest three volumes of LOW CARBING AMONG FRIENDS cookbooks are calling you.  Volume 8 and Volume 9 are almost exclusively comprised of my recipes!  Included in both editions are a few tasty new creations of my dear friends George Stella and Jennifer Eloff.   Volume 10 is hot off the press with more delectable goodies.  EARLY BIRD SECRET SALE!!  Special pricing and limited-time free shipping so hurry and place your order today.  You can order these or any of our cookbooks at https://amongfriends.us/Secret-SALE.php.  When you purchase our books, we would sure appreciate you stopping by Amazon to leave a review at this site.

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 of a medium, 7-8″ long spaghetti squash (about 1¾ c. threads)

2 tsp. bacon grease

2 oz. onion, chopped (I used red onion)

4 oz. chopped ham

¼ c. red bell pepper, chopped

½ c. chopped cilantro

2 oz. American Deluxe or cheddar cheese, shredded

2 oz. Monterrey Jack Cheese (2 slices)

DIRECTIONS:  Preheat oven to 350º.  Place the half squash cut-side down in a dish with ½” water and microwave on HI for 13 minutes.  Fork the threads into a bowl and save the shell to stuff.  While it is cooking, Melt the bacon grease in a skillet and saute the onion until tender.  Add the ham and bell pepper and saute until they are done/tender respectively. Turn off fire and stir in the cilantro.  Add half the ham mixture to the bowl of squash and stir well.  Add the American or cheddar cheese shreds and stir again.  Spoon into the squash shell.  Top with the 2 slices of Jack cheese any way you want to arrange/cut and place it.  Top with the remainder of the ham mixture and pop into the 3350º oven just long enough to melt the Jack cheese, or about 15 minutes.  Remove and scoop half the squash contents onto each plate and serve with guacamole or a green salad.

NUTRITIONAL INFO:    Makes 2 servings, each contains:

399 calories, 26.5 g  fat, 14.45 g  carbs, 2.65 g  fiber, 11.80 g  NET CARBS, 26 g  protein, 1600 mg sodium (soak ham in water for 1 hour before frying to lower sodium)

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This is what I made for dinner tonight and it was one of my best batches EVER!  I used Sam’s smoked sausage this time.  I only had 1# shrimp in the freezer and no shrimp stock.  So I added 1 can rinsed smoked oysters (which were quite good in it) and had to use chicken stock.  But man, was it ever good.  Even the hubs said “One of your better gumbos.”  This recipe I have been using for decades and can now make it blindfolded without a recipe.  It’s even Induction friendly if you omit the Carbalose or oat fiber roux.  You can always just thicken with xanthan gum, but you won’t get the brown flour’s depth or flavor the roux is used for.  If you omit the roux you can also omit the olive oil, which make up the “roux”.

A teacher I used to work with taught me how to make “roux”.  She was born and raised in Louisiana and cooked gumbo for a teacher’s holiday social gathering once years ago.  Though she used smoked sausage instead of bulk pork breakfast sausage, I find I like breakfast sausage better in my gumbo.  Two things I have added to the recipe are the stick of butter and the parsley.  She used chicken stock and I prefer seafood stock I get from boiling the shrimp shells for 10 minutes in 1½ quarts of water.  Of course, you can add crab meat (and/or crawfish), but you would have to adjust the nutritional info below if you make these additions.

Our latest three volumes of LOW CARBING AMONG FRIENDS cookbooks are calling you.  Volume 8 and Volume 9 are almost exclusively comprised of my recipes!  Included in both editions are a few tasty new creations of my dear friends George Stella and Jennifer Eloff.   Volume 10 is hot off the press with more delectable goodies.  EARLY BIRD SECRET SALE!!  Special pricing and limited-time free shipping so hurry and place your order today.  You can order these or any of our cookbooks at https://amongfriends.us/Secret-SALE.php.  When you purchase our books, we would sure appreciate you stopping by Amazon to leave a review at this site.

INGREDIENTS:

2 T. Carbalose flour (or oat fiber for lower carbs)

2T. olive oil

1 stick butter (1/2 c.)

½ c. chopped onion

½ c. chopped parsley

3 cloves minced garlic

6 oz. crumbled breakfast sausage (or sliced smoked sausage if you prefer)

3/4 c. chopped green bell pepper

½ c. chopped celery

3 Roma tomatoes, coarsely chopped (or a 14-oz. can diced tomatoes)

4 small bay leaves

2 tsp. thyme

10-15 drops Tobasco

¼ tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (or more if you like things spicier)

2 lb. shrimp in their shells, heads on (I often do half shrimp and half cleaned crawfish tail meat)

1qt. (4 c.) seafood stock made from shrimp shells

1½ c. frozen okra slices  (added last 5 minutes)

1 tsp. gumbo file powder (added last 5 minutes)

OPTIONAL:  Add 1-2 tsp. my Seafood Spice Blend

VARIATION:  Add 1 can smoked oysters well-rinsed of oil or 1 c. fresh oysters (if available). 

DIRECTIONS:  First make the seafood stock by boiling the shrimp shells in 1½ qts. water in a large cooking pot for about 10 minutes.  I make seafood stock ahead and keep extra in my spare freezer in 1 cup portions in plastic tubs for such uses.  Then I can just pop one out and add to the pot for soups, gumbos and etouffees.  Scoop out shells with slotted spoon and discard.  Pour stock into bowl and set aside.   Wipe moisture out of pot.

Chop all your vegetables and have them at the ready by the stove top, because once you start to make the roux, you can’t stop to cut them up.

Now you’re ready to make the roux and start the gumbo.  The roux imparts a nutty, browned flour taste to the broth of this dish and if this step is bypassed, you will merely be making an ordinary fish soup with much less depth of flavor.

There is an art to making roux with respect to knowing when to “kill” the browning action just short of it burning, which gives it an unpleasant, bitter taste.  If it burns, you just have to toss it out and start again and you’re butter is wasted.  I’ve burned it one time in hundreds and hundreds of batches.  Once you get the hang of it, it’s really quite easy!

Heat oil and add Carbalose flour (or oat fiber for lower carbs) and whisk constantly on high heat.   You want to brown the roux as dark as you can get it without it getting black.  I you see black bits of burned flour that look like pepper in it, it’s ruined and you’ll have to start again.  This can burn in the blink of an eye, so absolutely do not get distracted or walk away from the stove while making a roux!    The second it gets to a dark brown color, immediately dump the chopped vegetables in the pan to drop the temperature of the roux and halt further burning.  Now add the stick of butter, relax and continue sauteing the vegetables for 5-10 minutes until they wilt and begin to caramelize.  If still on Induction,  thicken with xanthan gum or your favorite thickener instead.  You won’t get that nutty flavor browning the flour gives to the final dish, but it will still be a good seafood stew.

If on Induction and omitting the roux, just begin by melting the butter and sauteing the veggies until tender.  Now add all remaining ingredients (except the gumbo file), including the seafood stock.  Simmer covered on lowest heat for about an 1-1½ hours to allow flavors to mellow.  Add okra and Gumbo File powder and simmer 5-7 minutes longer to let okra get just tender.  Slightly thicken with xanthan gum, dusting it lightly over surface and stirring constantly.  Repeat xanthan gum additions until gumbo reaches desired thickness (takes about 1/4 tsp or so total).  Serve with a nice salad.

NUTRITIONAL INFO: As a full meal, this recipe should serve 6 people a large bowl of gumbo.  If serving a small cup of gumbo as an appetizer to another entree, it will make about 10 servings.

6 Servings: each contains 450 calories, 30.28 g fat, 7.83 g carbs, 2.23 g fiber, 36.45 g protein, approx. 96 mg. sodium 5.6 NET CARBS

10 Servings: each contains 272 calories, 18.17 g fat, 4.7 g carbs, 1.34 g fiber, 21.87 g protein, approx. 58 mg. sodium, 3.36 NET CARBS

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