Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Bacon Cheddar Cauliflower Chowder - LOW CARB!

What is this???
Yeah.....the sight of that got me, too! SOUP!!!  And I love soup!!  With BACON!  And CHEESE!

I found the recipe on Facebook and couldn't resist clicking on the link that took me to the blog of Iowa Girl Eats.... and the recipe for this lush soup.  Meant to be a replacement for Potato Soup, it seems more like a rich, cheesy rice casserole to me.....but in soup form!

I did alter the recipe just a tiny bit.....don't I always?  I started by cooking my bacon....I used 5 slices.  Why?  Because!
Beautiful, huh?  So, while the bacon was frying, I used my mini food processor to chop up two celery heart stalks (change...recipe calls for one) and three green onions (change...recipe calls for onion powder, but I like the real thang).   
Once the bacon was done, I poured out all but a tablespoon or so of the bacon grease, then threw in the celery and onion to sauté for about 3-4 minutes, then I threw in....CAULIFLOWER RICE! 

Yes...I stalked Trader Joe's for two weeks before I finally asked the secret to finding this stuff on the shelf (fresh) or in the freezer case (organic, frozen).  Yes...I'll tell you the secret, but don't take them ALL!  The fresh is delivered at night and the frozen in the morning, so get there early!  I don't do early, but I did for this stuff (yes, I should just make my own, but...I'm a busy girl!)  Then I threw in the lush, chicken bone broth (yes, I make my the crockpot!) and let it simmer for about 12-15 minutes. 
Next?  Another item I stalk Trader Joe's for.......their pantry friendly, heavy whipping cream!  OMG, how I love this stuff!  It's reasonably priced and it KEEPS ON THE SHELF!  I used two of them.

Then I added about 1.5 cups of cheddar cheese...medium...not from Trader Joe's. 
You could see this coming together so rich, and lush!  I could hardly wait to eat this, I did...I poured a ladle of it into a bowl and ate it...standing right there at the stove!  Then I decided to try it garnished.  I used the bacon and cheese as in the recipe, but I added chopped green onions.
Because I love them.  On everything!  And yes,  it tastes just as delicious as it looks!
It does.....  It really does!   Guess what I'm having for lunch today!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Chicken with Red Pepper Sauce

Yesterday was a busy day and when I finally looked up, it was DINNER TIME!  ACK!  And I hadn't given a second thought to what I was going to make!

I had a huge pack of chicken breasts that I needed to separate and put in the freezer and I had some asparagus....grilled chicken and asparagus?  Boring.  Of course, my "go to", Pinterest, was where I went for ideas.....and up came a recipe for chicken with a red pepper sauce!  Yes!

THIS is the recipe that  liked best....mainly because I had most of the ingredients.  But I never really follow a recipe and I make substitutions when I have to!

So, to start with I made cutlets out of the chicken, put salt and pepper on them and cooked them in my AMAZING grill pan (because it was freezing outside and snowing!).
While those were cooking, I sautéed my onions and garlic.  I used both yellow onion and green onion....because I love green onions, but felt it needed a little more flavor.
And while those were both cooking, I used my mini food processor to blend the sour cream, cream cheese, white wine and roasted red peppers (there's my substitution....but I had a whole jar of them and I love the roasted flavor...and it's quick!). 
Once the onions and my mixture were done, I added them together and let it cook down a little.
Meanwhile, I roasted my asparagus that I had tossed in a garlic infused olive oil.  Once everything was done, I poured the sauce over the chicken, plated it all and.....yummmmm!
More green onions on top.......did I tell you how much I love green onions??
In hindsight, I wish I had used the Vitamix to blend the sauce ingredients.....while I loved the red pepper chunks, I just think it would have been a little time!  But this was really a quick and easy way to make a cream red pepper sauce!  I think it would be amazing over pasta, shrimp, and roasted vegetables!  Let me know if you try it!

Monday, June 16, 2014

I Scream...for Low Carb Ice Cream!!!!

I've been away for longer than I thought!  Let's just say, "I've been busy..." and leave it at that!

I'm still busy, but I'm busy and I miss, here's the latest obsession of mine....low carb ice cream!

I had my first of this when my BFF, Melinda, made some for me up at the cabin one was SO delicious!!!  We did notice that her recipe was less sweet the more frozen it was, so I thought about it and here's my adaptation of her recipe....

For the base I use 8 eggs, 3 cups of half and half, 2/3 cups of Splenda, 1 tablespoon of vanilla.
I started by separating the yolks from the whites....I've seen this done a lot of different ways, but I just put the whole egg in my hand and allow the whites to just fall off!

Do what you want with your egg whites....I pitch them.

The next thing I do is add 1.5 cups of the half and half to the eggs....
...and mix!
Then add the vanilla....

Then the Splenda (or whatever sweetener you prefer).

Meanwhile, I heat the remaining half and half just until you see the smoke start to rise off of it....not too much or it will curdle!  Then add a few tablespoons, one at a time, in order to temper the eggs and not cause them to cook or separate. 

 Then I add the rest, mix well and put it back on the stove on medium low and stir and stir......

...and stir until it begins to thicken enough to coat the back of a this...
For this batch, I melted a stick of butter and let about a cup (more or less, if you like) of pecans...
....then added them to the egg/half and half mixture and set the pan into an ice bath...

Once it's cooled to room temperature, I put it into my Cuisinart ice cream machine....

...and let the magic begin....
After it started to get really can tell when it's ready because it STOPS getting thicker...then I put it into a tightly sealed container and put it in the freezer.
And then I stalked the freezer until it was frozen enough to eat.....

...and then I it....
And then I made chocolate...

And now my life will never be the same again.....

Friday, March 8, 2013

To Tahini or Not to Tahini

I love hummus....but some of them out there just seem a little d r y.  So I decided to try something I saw somewhere...yea, I have NO idea where I saw this, but it stuck in my head.  Typically only weird stuff sticks...not important things such as where my keys are, what day of the week is it...umm...what month?

Anyway....I saw this recipe for an eggplant dip that reminded me of hummus.  So, I started off with these ingredients.... Tahini, hence the post title!  I didn't have any and it was raining outside....really raining.  I didn't miss it, but try it if you have some and let me know how it tastes!!

So...I cut up the eggplant into cubes and roasted them in the oven....with the garlic!

Yea, I agree....roasted the garlic was the a great idea.  If I'm roasting anything that's going to have garlic in it/on it, it goes into the oven WITH it.  It's a no brainer, right?


I drained the beans, then put them in my mini food processor and "whizzed" them.

Then I put the roasted eggplant and garlic into the processor with the lemon juice and parsley and "whizzed" them..
Add the two together..........and VOILA!!!
I'm telling you, the eggplant made all the difference in the world!  It made it so much more silky....moist and full of flavor.  As much as I enjoy hummus, I'd take a tablespoon of this over a gallon of hummus.  Of course, then I'd go into the kitchen and make some more!

I hope you try it!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Carrabas Chicken Bryan

I tend to eat a bit on the "low carb" side of things.  I LOVE bread....but it doesn't love me back.  I've tried to ignore that, but sometimes I give in.

When life is busy and I don't have time to cook something up and I'm in the mood for something delicious while sticking to my low carb intentions, I go to Carrabas.....yes, their bread is a m a z i n g, but I can give up the bread knowing everything else in my meal will be awesome!  What do I get???  The chicken trio!  And MY favorite of the three is.........drum roll, please........Chicken Bryan!!! 
I love it for many reasons...but mostly because it has GOAT CHEESE on it!  I've searched far and wide for a good recipe and I found one that is close......but not quite right, so I altered it a bit.
I started by dicing up half of a pretty large shallot and three garlic cloves.
Then I melted two tablespoons of butter and sauteed the shallots and garlic. 
Then I added 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and 1/2 cup of white wine (I used a chardonnay).  I let that simmer until it was reduced by about 80%.   Then I added about  tablespoons of butter and turned off the heat.  The butter adds a silkiness to the sauce...if you continue to cook it, the milk solids will dissapate and it won't be as silky.  It will still taste delish though!  ;o)
Meanwhile I drizzled olive oil........screeeeeeeeeeeeeech...........wait....I didn't really use olive oil.  This recipe calls for some sundried tomatoes...mine are soaked in olive oil....and yes, I used that oil.  Why not?  It's packed with flavor!  Oh, and I've saved it for future tomato-ey recipes!

Now where were we?  Oh....I drizzed some of the oil onto the chicken breasts, along with salt and pepper....
I got my grill pan (thanks, Shelby) nice and hot, then I seared both sides to get those nice grill marks!
Then I turned down the heat, added a little white wine, covered the pan with a lid and let it finish cooking.  This added a little extra flavor, while keeping the meat moist.
Meanwhile, I was working on the toppings..........chopped basil, chopped sundried tomatoes and......GOAT CHEESE SLICES!!!!!
Once the chicken breasts were done, I put them on the plate and put the goat cheese slices on the top so they could begin to soften....topped that with the sundried tomatoes and the chopped basil, then poured over the sauce.........voila!
It really was delicious that I wish I had waited and made it for my Valentine's Day dinner!!!  Because Valentine's Day is such a special day to me for many reasons, I eat only my favorite things on that day!   I guess I'd better go now....I need to find something else to have tomorrow. 
Happy Valentine's Day!