Saturday, December 13, 2014

Low Carb Crustless Ricotta Quiche Cups


I'm changing the way my recipe photo looks. Trying something different instead of the pink swirl frame. Please let me know what you think of this newer one.
I wanted to make a crabmeat quiche that I've made before, but I couldn't find my printed recipe. So, I searched through my old wooden recipe box and found one for a Shrimp and Broccoli quiche that's made with minimal eggs and ricotta cheese. I remember it as being good and creamy. Since my husband doesn't like shrimp or broccoli, I decided to go with 2 separate bowls and make muffin cups instead of 2 pies.
In his, the ones on the left, I only put Bacon. In mine, the ones on the right, I put Bacon, Mushrooms, and Onions. You could easily use whatever veggies you want. Another meat possibility is Ham.
Total muffins were 16, but if you wanted to just make one quiche in a pie plate, a 10" plate would be required. I'm going to post the recipe for what I made today, and also for the Shrimp and Broccoli version.

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup of a diced and cooked onion (I use a sweet onion)
1 cup of diced and cooked mushrooms
6 to 8 slices of chopped crispy cooked bacon
1 cup of grated Pecorino Romano cheese
3 Jumbo eggs
1 cup of Ricotta cheese, whole milk
1 and 1/2 cups of Heavy Cream
Pinch of coarse black pepper
1/4 teaspoon of salt

DIRECTIONS:
After you have cooked your onion, mushrooms, and bacon, preheat your oven to 375°F. In a large bowl, beat your eggs with an electric hand mixer. Add the grated cheese, Ricotta cheese, and heavy cream and mix well. Add all of your cooked veggies and bacon, and mix with a spoon. I did get 16 muffins out of this, so you'll need two muffin pans. I line the wells with non-stick liners. I found that this works best because the quiche cups are very light and creamy. Otherwise, they might break apart if you decide to grease your muffin pan.
Spoon the mixture into the liners 3/4 of the way full. I would imagine that you could fill them higher. They do puff up, but once they are out of the oven and cooling on a rack, they collapse in the middle.
Place in the oven and time them for 30 to 40 minutes. Mine were done at 35 minutes. When you insert a knife in and it comes out clean, they're done. Remove from oven and place pan on a cooling rack. If not eating right away, refrigerate them after they have cooled down. When ready to eat, just reheat in the microwave at 20 seconds for 2, or 30 seconds for 3. Those are approximate microwave times.

OPTIONAL:
If making in a pie plate, use a 10" one and oven time will be 40 to 50 minutes.

SHRIMP AND BROCCOLI VARIATION:
Eliminate the veggies and bacon. Instead use 1 cup of cleaned, cooked, and chopped Shrimp + 1 cup of blanched broccoli florets + 1 teaspoon of curry powder. The balance of the recipe stays the same.

NOTES:
Total servings - 16 muffin/quiche cups 26.48g net carbs (Veggie Bacon version)
Per serving - 1.65g net carbs
Total servings - 16 muffin/quiche cups 15.9g net carbs (Shrimp and Broccoli version)
Per serving - 1g net carb


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Low Carb Sugar Free Jello Cupcakes


I remember my Aunt Ann making a sheet cake that she poked holes in, then poured Jello on top. After it was refrigerated, whipped cream was then added. Whenever we went over to her house, it's something that I looked forward to, that Jello Poke Cake. I never knew what it was called until recently when I stumbled on a recipe through the Internet.
So, to make it low carb was easy, since I already had the cupcake recipe. For the topping I went with my Lemon Cream Cheese pie filling, instead of whipped cream. My husband, who doesn't like my low carb baked goods, loved this!
Monday night we went out to dinner with family, and I brought some of the cupcakes with me to have at their house for dessert. They all agreed that you wouldn't know that they were Low Carb!
It really makes me happy when one of my recipes is well-liked from non-low carbers.

Ingredients for the Cupcake:
1 stick of butter, softened (1/2 cup)
1/2 package of full fat cream cheese, softened (4 ounces)
1/4 tsp EZ-Sweetz Liquid Sucralose
3 Jumbo eggs
1/2 cup Liquid Egg Whites (from a carton)
2 tsps Vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cups plus 2 Tbsp Almond Flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
Zest of a lemon to equal 1/8 tsp

Instructions:
1 - Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare your muffin pan, regular size, with cupcake liners. I use unbleached parchment liners that do not stick.
2 - With a hand-held electric mixer, beat the butter, cream cheese, and sweeteners until smooth.
3 - Add all of the remaining ingredients and mix well.
4 - Spoon mixture into the liners about 3/4 of the way full. I got 11 cupcakes out of the mix.
5 - Bake at 30 to 35 minutes. Since ovens are different, start checking at 27 minutes until the tops are golden brown.

While the cupcakes are in the oven, mix a 3-ounce box of Sugar Free Raspberry Jello with 1 cup of boiling water. Keep stirring for 2 minutes to make sure all is dissolved.
When the cupcakes are done, remove from oven and place the muffin pan on a rack. Let them cool for 10 minutes.
After they've cooled, poke holes with a fork, I hit 6 spots of the top and the cupcakes were nicely soaked with the Jello. Okay, pour (or spoon) the Jello carefully over the cupcake tops, it will seep into the holes. There might be some remaining Jello, if you want to add an equal amount of cold water, maybe you could get some servings of Jello. I dumped mine, since there wasn't a lot of it.
Refrigerate the entire pan for 30 minutes. After that time, remove them from the pan.
While the cupcakes are in the refrigerator, you could go ahead and make the Lemon Cream Cheese topping. OR you could whip up some heavy cream with a little sweetener for the tops. It's up to you.

Lemon Cream Cheese Topping:
8 ounces of full fat cream cheese at room temperature
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream

You'll need 2 bowls, one medium sized and the other one small.
In the medium bowl, beat the cream cheese, lemon juice, and sweetener with a hand mixer until smooth.
In the small bowl, whip the heavy whipping cream to soft peaks.
Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. (If it seems too thick, just add more of heavy cream straight into the mix. Blend with the hand mixer until you have the consistency you want)
Spoon onto the refrigerated cupcakes, after you've removed them from the muffin pan.
Place in an airtight container and keep refrigerated.

Notes:
Total servings - 11 cupcakes at 24g net carbs with Lemon Cream Cheese Topping
Per serving - 1 cupcake at 2.2g net carbs
If using whipped cream instead of the Lemon Cream Cheese Topping, the carb count drops to 1.5g net carb per serving/cupcake.



Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Rustic Apple Pie - Medium Carb Count


If 10.5g net carbs per serving sounds like a lot to you, then this recipe isn't for you. Since I've started walking in the mornings after breakfast, I'm finding that I can handle slightly higher carbs. I also walk in place after lunch and dinner for 10 minutes. It helps to play some music when I do this, and before you know it I find myself dancing! My doctor changed one of my oral diabetic pills to Invokana around 5 months ago. This might also be contributing to my constant lower fasting glucose. I range from 90 to 130 in the mornings before breakfast, and I don't really test at other times of the day, unless I feel a little off. Right now I'm really happy that I've been able to be adding some more carbs, but I don't go overboard!
I have to do some more research on what fruits have lower carbs, so that I can make more pies!!
Anyway, since the crust I use bakes up quickly in the oven, I had to cook my apple filling on the stove top. I'm really happy with the taste of this one. The slices come out smaller than a standard pie, so next time I may make the crust in a pie pan, and add the cooked apples when the crust is almost done. The amount of carbs would stay the same, but the slices would be bigger!

APPLE FILLING:
  • 3 small Granny Smith apples
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp Swerve Granulated sweetener or granulated erythritol
  • 3 drops of EZ- Sweetz Liquid Sucralose
  • 3/4 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
COOKING DIRECTIONS:
Core and slice apples into 1/2 inch thick slices. Place slices in a bowl and pour lemon juice over apples and mix to coat well. Set them aside.
In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Stir in sweeteners and extract. Add apple slices, turning to coat with mixture. Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg.
Cover and cook until apple slices are soft, about 2 to 3 minutes. Test one of the slices at 2 minutes, if it still has a little crunch to it, cook a little longer since the time in the oven is minimal.
Remove from the heat and let it cool completely before adding to your unbaked pie crust at Step #8 below in the Directions!


PIE CRUST:
Directions:
1.     Preheat oven to 350°F.
2.     For the crust, combine almond flour, GF all purpose flour, Swerve, xanthan gum, and salt, in a food processor. Pulse to combine.
3.     Sprinkle butter in, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
4.     With processor running on low, add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough begins to clump together. 2 Tbs worked for me.
5.     Cover work surface with a large sheet of parchment paper and sprinkle with almond flour. Turn out dough and form into a square (or disk for a pie).
6.     Sprinkle with additional almond flour and top with another piece of parchment, then carefully roll out in all directions to form a 10 to 11 inch circle.
7.     Poke some holes in the bottom of crust with a fork.
8.     Add the cooled apple filling and carefully fold up the edges as shown in the photo.
9.     Bake 20 to 25 minutes, so that the top browns, but watch the bottom doesn't burn! Cool on rack when done.

Optional: A bit of whipped cream on top is heavenly. I store my leftover pie in the refrigerator. When I'm ready to serve, I put a slice in the microwave, covered, for 15 seconds to warm it up, then top with a sprinkle of Confectioner's Swerve and some whipped cream. Oh Boy it's good!

Notes:
Total carbs for entire recipe is 84.3g net carbs. If slicing into 8ths, per serving is 10.5g net carbs.



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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Coconut Lime Cream Cheese Squares - Low Carb


On May 3rd, we went to a Kentucky Derby party at our nephew's house. Besides bringing my low carb Maple Walnut Chocolate Chip Biscotti (recipe not updated yet) we also brought this low carb dessert. I could have made a pie, but since there were a lot of people I went with squares and cut 16 small pieces out of this 8 by 8 pan. I cut them in 4 one direction, then turned the pan and cut into another 4 pieces.


PIE CRUST:
Directions
1.     Preheat oven to 350°F.
2.     For the crust, combine almond flour, GF all purpose flour, Swerve, xanthan gum, and salt, in a food processor. Pulse to combine.
3.     Sprinkle butter in, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
4.     With processor running on low, add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough begins to clump together. 2 Tbs worked for me.
5.     Cover work surface with a large sheet of parchment paper and sprinkle with almond flour. Turn out dough and form into a square (or disk for a pie).
6.     Sprinkle with additional almond flour and top with another piece of parchment, then carefully roll out in all directions to form a 9 by 9 inch square (or 10-inch circle for a pie).
7.     Place in 8 by 8 pan (or a pie tin).
8.     Poke some holes in the bottom of crust with a fork.
9.     Bake 13 to 15 minutes. If you can cover the crust edges with foil after they have browned, you can add more time to let the bottom of the crust get slightly brown. Cool on rack when done. 

Ingredients for Filling
  • 12 oz cream cheese (full fat) room temperature 
  • 1 Lime, juiced 
  • 9 Tbsps Swerve or granular erythritol 
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
Directions
1.     In a bowl, beat the cream cheese, lime juice, and sweetener, with a hand mixer until smooth.
2.     In a separate bowl, whip the heavy whipping cream.
3.     Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture.
4.     Scoop into the cooled down crust. Refrigerate for 2 hours or more.

Optional:
Top with toasted coconut before refrigerating. On a sheet pan, spread out 1/4 cup of unsweetened fine coconut. Toast for 2 to 3 minutes in a 350° oven. Be careful not to burn the coconut. Remove from oven and let it cool. After it has cooled, place in a bowl and add 1 to 2 tablespoons of cold water and mix until moist. Add 1 teaspoon of powdered erythritol and 1 drop of E-Z Sweetz liquid sucralose and mix well. Whatever amount doesn't get used, keep the remainder in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Notes
Total carbs is 33.6g for the entire recipe. If cutting into 16 squares, each square would be 2.1g. If making a pie and cutting into 8 slices, the carb count would be 4.2g per slice.



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Thursday, May 8, 2014

Cheese Crookies


You're probably thinking, what the heck is a 'Crookie'? It's my version of a cross between a cracker and a cookie. It has the texture and taste of a cheese cracker, but the look and shape of a cookie. I intend on modifying the shape to be square and flatter, and then it will be a true cracker. The taste of these are awesome, so cheesy!
I adapted a recipe from Trisha Yearwood's Cheese Straws on the Food Network. I tried her method of using a cookie dough press, but the mixture was just too dense and difficult to work with in a press. Next time I make these I'll make some adjustments to get them to work in the press. I went out and bought one specifically for this recipe. I might have to resort to just using it for cookies.

Ingredients:
15 ozs. of shredded sharp cheddar room temperature (or Colby Jack)
1/2 cup butter softened
2 cups Jen's bake mix (Splendid Gluten-free Bake Mix 3)
1/4 tsp. xanthan gum
3/4 tsp. salt
pinch pepper
pinch cayenne
pinch paprika
pinch garlic powder

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325°F.
Put the softened cheese and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, beat it for 15 to 30 minutes.
In a medium bowl, sift 1 and 1/2 cups of Jen's bake mix with all of the spices. Gradually add the seasoned flour to the cheese mixture by large spoonfuls, beating well after each addition. Now, gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup of the unseasoned bake mix until the dough is somewhat stiff but still soft enough to the touch. You will not need to add all of the bake mix. I ended up using only 1/4 cup and returned the balance to its canister.
I use non-stick parchment paper in my trays. With this amount you might need 3 or 4 trays. Bake at 325° for 15 to 20 minutes. Any thin areas will bake quicker and probably burn, so be careful to have consistent thickness.
I rolled the dough into 1/4 inch balls and flattened them with a fork. I may adjust this recipe to be softer to be put into a cookie press to make cheese straws, or fill a plastic bag and cut the tip to pipe the dough on.

Yield: 110 Crookies
Serving Size: 5 Crookies are 2g  net carbs.

Optional: Sprinkle some salt on them as soon as they are out of the oven.


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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Mushroom Saute with Wine (REVISED)


I've been making this side dish for many years, often with a few tweaks here and there. My Mom used to make this, and I could never get enough of it. She wasn't Italian, but could cook as good as any other Italian in my Dad's family!
I'm pretty sure that she used a Red Wine that my Grandfather made in his wine cellar, but I'm using a Merlot wine. So, I would assume that any dry red wine would work here. I have such great memories playing under my Grandfather's grape vine that provided a shady place out of the sun. My grandparents had the biggest vegetable garden that I had ever seen for a residential area. Grandma grew tomatoes (the best taste ever!), green beans, eggplant, and they had a fig tree. I'm sure there were other vegetables but I can't remember them all. I remember the chicken coop, and still have disturbing memories when Grandma slaughtered the chickens. If my memory is correct, the hens in the coop were for laying eggs. She went on a bus into Paterson, New Jersey to get live chickens, that would later become dinner.
Grandma made the best pizza from scratch, topped with her crushed tomatoes, fresh garlic, and some freshly grated Locatelli Peccorino Romano cheese. Sometimes she would add some anchovies, yum! There was NO mozzarella on her pizza anywhere, and it really didn't need it. Everything she made was from scratch, and a lot of it came from her garden.
Okay, moving on to today's recipe!

Ingredients:
an 8oz. pack of Baby Bella OR White mushrooms sliced
1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Extra Light)
1 Tbsp Butter (REVISED)
1/4 tsp Fine Sea Salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (or less)
1/2 cup Merlot wine

Directions:
First thing is to make sure your mushrooms are cleaned. Add olive oil and butter to a medium saute or frying pan. Have the burner set to medium high heat and add the mushrooms to the pan. Toss them with tongs for about 2 minutes. Lower the flame to medium. Next, add the salt, pepper, and garlic powder, then toss the mushrooms to distribute the spices. Add the crushed red pepper and toss again to mix. Finally, add the Merlot wine (or any dry red), turn the heat up to high until the wine has cooked off. Keep tossing and coating the mushrooms with the wine until the wine has completely disappeared. That's it!

I have always winged it with the spices before measuring them out today. I adjusted the final measurements in the Ingredients list above. I didn't have enough salt (for my taste), and the red pepper was so hot on my tongue that I cut that back. Even the wine wasn't enough, but like I said the amounts have been adjusted in the Ingredients.
I like to have this as a side along with my morning scrambled eggs. It is also a good side for some beef dishes. Since I'm the only one that eats mushrooms in my house (hubby doesn't like them at all), I only used the one pack of mushrooms. If you have a bigger family, go ahead and double or triple them, but you will need a bigger pan.

Notes:
Adding butter to the oil in the frying pan has made this an irresistible side dish! Once I tasted them, I couldn't stop eating them and I ate the whole bunch of mushrooms!! 
Based on the ingredients used the entire recipe is approximately 4.5g net carbs. It should give you around 1 and 1/2 cups of mushrooms for the full recipe.
Serving size = 1/2 cup with 1.5g net carbs



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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

"Not So Impossible" Coconut Pie



Five slices remain after my husband, Frank, got a taste of it. I had 1 slice, and he had 2!
This morning when I went into the kitchen, I saw a note from Frank with a happy face ☺saying "The pie was GREAT!". To get a note, he must really like it!!
He's my recipe tester, if he likes it, everybody will like it. He's very difficult when it comes to eating healthy, the low-carb way, but he's slowly getting there.
I adapted this recipe from Barbo's Kitchen (a friend of Jennifer Eloff). I tried it a couple of days ago by making 1/2 the recipe and putting them in a muffin tin. They tasted good, so I knew I would be making it again really soon, but in a pie plate with the full recipe.
My sister reminded me that our Mom used to make the original Impossible Pie using Bisquick mix. I do remember eating it, but cannot recall how it was made.
At 1.2g carbs per serving, my version works really well as a low carb dessert!

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup of Better than Eggs (or 4 eggs)
3 Tbsp melted butter
3/4 cup of heavy whipping cream
1 and 1/4 cup of water
a Pinch of Sea Salt
1/4 cup Biscuit Mix from LC Foods Corp
1/4 tsp Liquid Sweetener (I used E-Z Sweetz liquid Sucralose)
2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup unsweetened finely grated coconut

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 350° F.
Using a blender, put all EXCEPT the coconut in and mix until smooth. Add the coconut and stir into batter. Spray a  9" pie plate with a cooking spray. Pour the batter into the greased pie dish and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until custard in the center is firm.
Once it's cooled down, place it in the refrigerator to store it. Whipped Cream goes nicely on a slice of this pie!

Notes:
The entire pie is 9.5g carbs, based on the ingredients that I used.
If you slice into 8 servings, each serving would be approximately 1.2g carbs.


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