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Bacon Brussel Sprouts

I love brussel sprouts, and enjoyed a recipe last night I will be making soon. “Very simple, verry easy” as Chef Tell used to say.


3-4 cups/45kg of brussel sprouts, cut in half

3-4 strips bacon (or use 2 Tbs/28kg bacon dripping)

1/2 cup/113g Mexican Cotija or similar salty cheese

1/4 cup/57g  minced onion or shallot


Fry the bacon until browned, remove and cut into pieces; using the same pan, sautè onions in bacon fat, then add the brussels. Cover and cook until desired doneness. Dish up and add crumbled cheese over the top along with the bacon pieces.


Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount per Serving
Calories 93
Calories from Fat 49.3
Total Fat 5.48g
Saturated Fat 2.95g
Cholesterol 16.25mg
Sodium 150.25mg
Total Carbohydrate 7.01g/ <5g net carbs
Dietary Fiber 2.39g
Sugars 1.93g
Protein 3.25g
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Spicy Sausage & Bok Choy Soup

If you want a very low carb and low calorie filling meal, you might like this soup made with bok choy, which is the lowest carb of the cabbage family, and can of course be made with other cabbage or kale at a somewhat higher carb-cost.  This is also an inexpensive meal.  The sausage gives the rather bland bok choy a lovely flavor.

For medium spicy choose a sausage like andouille or chorizo, for mild use a Polish or Italian type of dense sausage.

12oz (or more) of sausage

2 Tbs dripping

1/2 cup diced onion

1 large head bok choy (about 10 cups)

4 cups beef or chicken stock

Opt: 1/2 tsp pepper flakes

Saute the onion and sausage until the sausage in the dripping or other fat until it is a bit browned, then add the bok choy and saute a further 3-4 minutes before adding the stock. You might need to add some water if you want more soupy soup. The flavors should be nicely combined after 30 minutes.

I pour the whole thing into my slow cooker and let it simmer for several hours.


Amount per Serving
Calories 159
Calories from Fat 103.4
Total Fat 11.49g
Saturated Fat 4.4g
Cholesterol 31.08mg
Sodium 445.92mg
Total Carbohydrate 5.18g
Dietary Fiber 1.54g
Sugars 2.24g 
Protein 8.42g
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Cauliflower “Tots”

A common US junk food is “Tater Tots” which is processed dehydrated potato, plus additives, fried. Kids do like them, and adults, too.  I was never a fan of the tot, but I have children who visit that I think would like this superior, and very tasty, alternative–the cauli-tot.  I especially like that this recipe freezes well, so I can make a big batch to have at the ready when the young ones visit.

Cauli Tots (Baked)

1 12 ounce bag frozen cauliflower
1/3 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
salt, pepper, onion powder (to taste)

Cook cauliflower, covered, in microwave for 6 minutes. Pour off water and let stand until cool.

Process well in a food processor, (or rice using other means). I’ve found the smoother texture holds together better than the more coarse texture. As you form cauliflower into its shape, squeeze, working any excess water from the vegetable. Roll into approx. 1.5″ balls and drop into Parmesan. Form into tots by flattening the tops. If the mixture is still too moist and falls apart, work a little of the Parmesan into the tot, and then roll the formed tots into the Parm once again to coat.

Place tots on a greased cookie sheet and freeze for 30 minutes prior to baking to help tots hold their shape. At this point it’s good to note that you can freeze them longer or make these ahead of time. Simply place in a freezer bag after the initial chilling period and store for up to a month.

Below, you can see the uniform shape of the tots. (The ones to the far left were stuffed with American cheese inside, and only incredibly amazing. My kids swiped those. The whole world should be covered in cheese stuffed cauli tots.)

To bake: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for 10 minutes, rotating tots every five minutes or so for even browning.

Makes about 30 tots. One serving is 6 tots.

Nutritional Information per serving: Calories: 38, Carbohydrates: 5g, Fiber: 1g, Net Carbohydrates: 4g, Protein: 7 g, Fat: 4.5g.

Source: http://yourlighterside.com/2010/03/caulitots-baked/

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Cinnamon or Cocoa Almonds

If you have had those tasty little morsels offered by Emerald, you might want to make your own free of the additives. A very simple process.

Melt coconut oil (1/4 cup will coat approximately 1 cup of almonds), add a few drops of stevia if desired, then pour into a lidded container;  add the almonds and shake to coat. In another container, add cinnamon or cocoa powder, put the coated almonds in and shake yet again. Voile! Store in the refrigerator if the weather is warm.

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Beef Carpaccio

Had anyone told me in my youth that I would one day relish raw meat I would have scoffed. Now, though, one of my favorite appetizers is just that, raw meat fancied up a bit. Here is my version of the Italian classic raw meat dish beef carpaccio.

Beef Carpaccio

1 pound beef tenderloin or top round roast

2 cups fresh baby arugula

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

Grape tomatoes cut into quarters for garnish

Parmesan cheese shavings

Wrap the beef in cling film, and put in the freezer for 1 hour. With a very sharp knife, cut the beef across the grain into very thin slices (about 1/8-inch thick). Place the slices between wax paper sheets. Lightly pound with a meat mallet, or a rolling pin, until paper thin.

Arrange the slices on 6 individual chilled plates (or two for  an entrée portion). Add the arugula to a bowl and toss with half the olive oil and season with salt and pepper, then arrange in a pile on top of the carpaccio. Add tomato quarters to garnish.

Place the remaining oil, vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper in a container with a tight lid, and shake until well blended. Or use a blender.  Drizzle dressing around the plate. Top with several shavings of a good quality parmesan or other Italian hard cheese.

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Lava Cakes

Lava cakes, yes! These tasty little cakes are as good as any I have had, even pre-hflc! Plus, they are so easy to make, and dress up any meal, especially when you have guests.

PreHeat oven to 375F/190c. Cooking time is critical, for you want them essentially under done, so that the center will flow out when you cut into them.

2 eggs beaten

4 T coconut oil or ghee (butter probably will work, but so far I haven’t tried it)

2.5 oz  good quality chocolate (I use Lindt 85% or 99%)

1 Tablespoon almond flour (I plan to try coconut flour, and will use half the amount)

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

stevia or other sweetener to taste

Prepare 2-3 custard cups by greasing, then dust with cocoa powder. I usually get 3 servings, and that may just be the custard cups I am using.

Melt the chocolate and oil together over hot water, mix well; add a little to the eggs to temper them, then mix in the remainder along with the vanilla and almond flour.

Bake for 8-10 minutes. I will go for 9-10 minutes if serving immediately, but only 8 minutes if I plan to reheat later. Insert a skewer to see if the center is runny.  Run a knife around the edge, place a small plate on top, then turn upside down.

Serve with lots of whipped cream.

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Mini Cakes

These are sometimes called mug cakes, since they are cooked in a mug. I prefer to use custard cups, and then turn out on a plate, top with berries, and a lot of whipped cream.  The recipe is for the basic cake, but you can add cocoa, chocolate, fruit, flavorings, etc., to vary your minis.

Makes two

1 egg

2T oil (I like walnut or coconut)

2T water

3T almond meal

Opt: few drops of stevia

Beat the eggs, then add oil and water, and any flavorings you like, such as vanilla; then add in the almond meal. Divide between two custard cups. Microwave for 1.5 minutes. I do one at a time. You will see the cake rise up, then level out. Let cool a bit, then add any toppings.

Amount per Serving
Calories 355
Calories from Fat 284.0

Total Fat 31.56g
Saturated Fat 6.2g

Sodium 320.7mg
Total Carbohydrate 11.15g Net Carbs 5.7
Dietary Fiber 5.43g
Sugars 1.53g
protein 13.14g


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Crunchy Flax Crackers

I love crunch! One of the things I missed most about giving up wheat bread was the very crispy toast I enjoyed. Now I finally came up with a really crunchy, and very low carb, cracker.

Crispy Flax Crackers

1 cup flax seeds*

1/2 cup egg whites

¼ cup water

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp oil

Opt: 1 tsp psyllium powder

Opt: 1/3 c grated parmesan cheese

Mix all ingredients and let sit for a couple minutes, then spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (I shake it around a bit to get it level over the whole sheet.)  The batch in the picture has both pysllium powder and parmesan cheese, but they are very good without, and I like the flavor either way. The white specks are from the cheese.

Bake at 225F/107C for 30 minutes, remove and score into 24 crackers (pizza cutter works well), put back in oven reduce the temperature to 200F/93C and bake for another couple hours or until crisp.  The time is always a bit iffy, I check every 30-40 minutes.

About 1 carb per 3 good-sized crackers.  Great with cheese, butter, pate, or anything else that fits well on a cracker.

*Use whole flax seeds, not flax meal, to keep the carb count low; whole seeds can’t be digested, so you get the crunchy without the calories and carbs. Also, the color of  flax seeds range from golden to dark, and so the crackers will look lighter or darker depending one which you choose.

Flax Crackers done

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Bolognese Sauce with Zucchini Noodles

I had been craving the meat sauce traditionally known as Bolognese. Part of my desire in winter for comfort foods. The traditional sauce is relatively low in carbs, but I need lower carbs for my LCHF plan.  This is delicious on squash noodles, I use the green zucchini variety. I use a neat little gadget that makes long strips like noodles, which I then lightly sauté in a bit of butter to use in place of regular pasta.  This is good way to extend meat.

Recipe is for 4 serviings.

Bolognese Meat Sauce

1 pound ground beef

1 teaspoon minced garlic or garlic powder

2 tablespoons of minced onion or dehydrated onion

7 ounces of diced canned tomatoes

2 Tbs of tomato paste

1 small carrot finely diced

1 stalk of celery finely diced

1 T of Italian herb mix

2 cups of beef or chicken stock or water

1/2 cup red wine (opt)

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (opt)

Sauté the ground beef until just done, not really browned, more like steamed, then add remaining ingredients, plus salt and pepper to taste. When the vegetables get soft, take a potato smasher and squish everything together so that the sauce is fairly smooth with no big chunks of meat or veg adjust seasoning. Simmer for a couple hours to improve the taste.

Good on a bed of lettuce, the squash noodles, or shirataki noodles.

The carb count for zucchini noodles at about < 2 carbs per 100g, or 1/4 of a medium size squash.


Serving Size: 1 serving
Calories 374
Calories from Fat 245.9
Total Fat 27.32g
Total Carbohydrate 7.42g
Dietary Fiber 1.43g
Protein 21.13g
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Thanksgiving Day Meal

My spouse and I are on our own this year and briefly flirted with the idea of going out for our holiday meal, but I love turkey and all the turkey leftovers, plus the gallon of delicious and nutritious bone broth I will make with the carcass. I am using the slow-roast method. I have a small ten pound turkey, locally raised on an Amish farm. I brined it for a day, trinsed well and patted dry. I then salted inside and out, and rubbed melted butter over the bird so it will brown nicely. I filled the cavity with a garlic bulb left whole, a small onion, a halved apple, plus a big bunch of thyme, and stuck sprigs of thyme and rosemary under the skin, and around  wings, thighs, and legs. And parsley in all the other nooks and crannies.

Placed in a shallow roasting pan lined with foil, added some carrots and other root vegetables around the sides, the placed uncovered in the oven set at 200F/93C for ten hours. An hour before dinner raise the temperature to 375F/190C, and

165F internal temp deepest great and thugh

people warn foolishly, but safer because bird is thoroughly cooked (remember worries about areas not well done enough?)

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