26/09/2016

Low Carb Breakfast | Travel breakfast options

 
 
I was able to get my hands on some homemade, low carb granola that is basically a selection of seeds with some nuts and coconut, roasted in the oven until it is crispy. How good does the picture below look? Fantastic I say. The coconut gives it a nice sweetness which I love.
 
 
 
 
This really is tasty (who doesn't love roasted nuts?) and so good in the morning.
So how do I enjoy mine?
 
 


Firstly I have 1/2 a cup to 200ml of plain full cream yoghurt. I dice 2 strawberries and add it on top.


 
 
I add about 2 to 3 tablespoons granola on top of that.
 
 


Mix it all together and enjoy!
 
 

Breakfast is important but not always possible. And you can only have eggs so many times! This is also great for traveling. Take some granola with and at the breakfast buffet, just add your yogurt and fruit. So quick and easy.

Another option at the buffet, when you want something hot, is eggs and vegetables. I take some of the marinated mushrooms, peppers and onions (or the veggies meant for the omelettes and add some vinegar) and enjoy that with my eggs. No issues and healthy. It keeps you full for longer meaning you aren't starving by 10am.



What are your favourite traveling breakfast options? Please share them in the comment section below.

24/09/2016

Beef Burger and Burger Bowls



While I started following the low carb lifestyle, the rest of my family has not. Hubby and Toddler has switched over to whole wheat breads and pastas to get away from the over processed white stuff. I therefore tend to make meals where I can add some carbs and substitute either cauliflower or salad for my meal. One of our biggest loves are a proper burger.


 
 
I have learnt to love a Burger Bowl, which is essentially a burger patty with lost of salad ingredients. I say learnt because not being able to pick up a burger and take a big bite is basically the only thing I loved about it. Or so I thought. I do have some ideas how to spice it up!




Firstly I buy the best, thick-cut patties I can find. Woolworth's make a fantastic beef patty with just the amount of fat so it stays juicy. If you want to make it yourself, don't use lean beef as your burger will be dry.




Just before the burgers are done, I add a dollop of onion relish on top of each and then cover it with cheese.



So instead of a cheese slice I use grated cheese, as it makes a melted cheesy sauce which is great for the Burger Bowl.




Add a lid a steam until the burger is cooked to you liking. Don't over cook it because it will go dry. It should be slightly pink inside.




In the meantime prepare the buns by adding lots of veggies and some siracha mayo. I do the same for the Burger Bowl, lots of veggies and some mayo as well.




When the burgers are done, to the buns and salad bowl and enjoy immediately (or you salad veggies will wilt). You can also do some sweet potato fries on the side.



Enjoy!

21/09/2016

Steak dinner for a party | Mushroom Sauce Recipe



Having a party (or in the South African sense: a braai) is something that happens in our family every weekend. There is always a reason to celebrate, even if it is just to watch the rugby. We use this menu for almost every braai, but vary the actual ingredients slightly.




We were able to source these beautiful, thick cut T-bone steaks. They work out great, especially when you count the couples: the guys take the big piece, while the ladies get to have the smaller fillets. The guys like theirs medium-raw while the ladies usually like theirs medium and because the fillet is thinner it cooks quicker! And the leftovers the next day (if there are any) are great in a salad or on some toasted bread.




A standard at every braai or BBQ is the green salad. No matter what else is on the menu, you always have a salad. My mom always said that if there is nothing green on the plate, then it doesn't look appetising. We follow that rule as much as we can because it really is true.
 



In the winter months we add some veggies too, especially if there are people following low carb. Otherwise we make potato fries. But because we know not everyone follows a low carb lifestyle, we do add some other carbs like a fresh french loaf with a selection of jams and brie cheese.
 


 
We don't like anyone feeling left out so I also made some of my low carb bread, as we had someone who is gluten-free as well. However even the guys doing high carb tried my bread, they loved the bread so much that I had to go make some more!
 



Then I made my pride and joy: a big batch of mushroom sauce (as I am one of those people that eat some steak with my sauce instead of some sauce with my steak). This is so easy:

What you need:
  •  8 large portabella mushrooms, diced
  • 250g button mushrooms, diced
  • 500g creme fraiche
  • 250g thick creme
  • slat and pepper
  • peri peri powder or other hit sauce like Tabasco
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • xylitol or chutney for sweetness
 What to do:
  1. In a hot frying pan, add some oil and the mushrooms and fry until all the water has emerged and evaporated. About 10 -15 minutes. You want to get them nice and browned.
  2. Add the creams and lower the heat. They should simmer while stirring.
  3. Add some salt and lots of black pepper. Add about 1 to 2 tbsp each Worcestershire sauce and xylitol and the peri peri or hot sauce to you liking. I like it were you just taste the chilli but is not overwhelming.
  4. Simmer until it has thickened and serve hot.
  5. Enjoy!

I hope this menu will appear at your next braai!

13/09/2016

Low Carb Microwave Bread with Almond Meal


 
I love my microwave. It makes my life so much easier. Doing low carb is very difficult if you had a serious love affair with bread. I miss my peanut butter sandwiches so much. By doing this 2 minute bread in the microwave you can have fresh bread in minutes.
 
 


Previously I made it with coconut flour, which is good but sweet and a bit dense. With almond flour it even looks like good old white bread!


What you need:

  • 1 TBSP melted butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 TBSP almond flour (sifted to remove lumps if possible)
  • 1 tsp baking powder


What to do:

  1. In a microwave safe bowl with a flat bottom, add the cooled butter (too hot and you will scramble the egg!) and flour and baking powder. Mix and then add the egg.
  2. Mix well removing all lumps. Don't be tempted to add water if you feel it is dry because if you add too much it won't cook in the middle. If it looks eggy (or too moist) then add another tbsp of flour. You want it the consistency of a stiff porridge.
  3. Smooth the top with the back of a wet spoon.
  4. Microwave for 90 seconds.
  5. If it is still raw in the middle then continue with 30 second intervals.
I cut the slice in half lenght-ways and enjoy as normal. How delicious does this look? I add a big lump of butter while it is still warm.




Add butter and peanut butter or absolutely any other topping: cheese and salami, tomato and lettuce, whatever you can think off!



09/09/2016

Low Carb Chocolate and Macadamia Brownie





I miss chocolate. I miss it so much. Not to mention cakes and brownies. I have been attending a lot of parties lately and really would love to just stand in front of the cakestand and shovel as much goodies into my mouth as I can handle! But I am also attending a wedding in September and we are celebrating Christmas in Bali this year and would love to wear a swimsuit (a bikini even?) by then.



Currently I still have about 10kg of baby fat but as my Mom says, I can't call it that anymore because the Little One isn't a baby anymore. Toddler fat? Anyhow. This recipe allows you to enjoy some treats while following the low carb lifestyle. It is sweet so you only need a little bit and I made it with some chocolate peanut butter icing and we ate it like birthday cake. The Little One even had sprinkles. For grown-sups I added grated dark choclate. This is a nice moist brownie and the nuts add to it but can be left out. 

FOR THE BROWNIE:

What you need:

  • 200g xylitol or sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 200g dark chocolate (half a slab)
  • 250g butter
  • 1/3 cup almond flour
  • 2 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 100g macadamia nuts (optional)

 What to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180F.
  2. Cream the sugar and eggs until it is light and creamy.
  3. Melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave. Mix until smooth and the chocolate is melted.
  4. Add vanilla to eggs and mix well. Add the chocolate mixture to the eggs and whisk.
  5. Add the flours and baking powder and fold through (sift the flours if they are full of lumps).
  6. Add the nuts and pour into a prepared baking dish lined with baking paper and buttered.
  7. Bake in the oven for 25- 30m minutes (until a toothpick comes out clean). It will rise but will fall flat again as it cools.
  8. Decorate and enjoy.
Here it is in pictures:


Cream the eggs and sugar until it is pale in colour. Melt butter and chocloate together
 

 
 Stir chocolate and butter until everything is melted and smooth. Add to the egg mixture.
 
 
 
 Mix well then add the flours and baking powder. Fold.


 
Add the nuts, mix carefully then add to a prepared baking dish and bake.
 
 

FOR THE ICING:

 

 
I you want to add icing (or frosting or whatever you call it) to the brownies, then try this one. It is not too sweet so it goes really well with the sweetnes of the brownie. It is inspired by my Chocolate Peanut Butter cake.
 

What you need:

  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter
  • 200g cream cheese (room temprature!)
  • 100g coconut cream
 

What to do:

  1. Melt the chcolate in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds.
  2. Ad th epeanut butter and warm again for 10 seconds. Mix well. Allow to cool.
  3. Add the cream cheese and mix well. If it seizes because the cream cheese is too cold, then microwave it for 10 seconds. It may seem like it splits a little but whisk it well.
  4. Add the coconut cream and whisk again.
  5. Top the brwonie and enjoy!
 



01/09/2016

No Bake Easy Cheesecake with Jelly Topping

Perfect for Spring Day in South Africa! How about we forget that bikini season is a mere 4 months away and enjoy some delicious cheesecake?
 

We have a lot of parties here at the Office. Birthdays, Farewells, Baby Showers and sometimes for Charity. Aziza (one of our members and also the local dessert queen) usually makes a wonderful and easy cheesecake that she brings to our gatherings. The picture on the left (I couldn't take a picture of the whole tray because it was almost finished by the time I got there!). The one on the right is her milk tart squares. I haven't been able to pry this recipe from her but you can use this recipe as it cuts well and taste amazing.
 
 
 
 
What I love about this recipe is that it is a no-bake recipe and it looks so elegant. This really is the perfect dessert for parties where your guest will think you slaved all day. The easiness of this recipe will be our well guarded secret!


What you need:
Base:
  • 1 packet Tennis Biscuits
  • Tablespoon Butter (melted)
  • 1 tin Condensed Milk
Filling:
  • 1 tub Fresh Cream
  • 1 tub Plain Cream Cheese
  • ½ cup Lemon Juice
  • 15g Gelatin (dissolved in 100ml Hot Water)
Topping:
  • different colours jelly (red is used in the picture and green matches well but use whatever is according to your tastes)
 
 


What to do: 
 

 
Base
  1. Crush the biscuits and mix with the melted butter.
  2. Press into a shallow dish to form the base.
  3. Chill in the fridge while making the filling.
Filling

  1. Whip the fresh cream until almost whipped.
  2. Add the condensed milk and cream cheese and mix through. 
  3. Add lemon juice and mix again.
  4. Dissolve gelatine in hot water and stir until dissolved.
  5. Add to rest of the cream cheese mixture and mix thoroughly
  6. Pour mixture over chilled biscuit base and set in the fridge overnight.

Topping
  1. Make a packet of strawberry or lemon or greengage jelly, but use 1 cup hot water and ½ cup cold water.
  2. Wait until completely cooled and pour gently over set cheesecake. 
  3. Put back in fridge again until set.

OTHER OPTIONS:
Pour a tin of passion fruit pulp over your set cheesecake before serving.
You can layer sliced fresh strawberries and place on set cheesecake and then pour over the runny jelly. Set in fridge.
Do the same with pineapple and lemon jelly or use kiwi and greengage jelly.



 
 

 

Low Carb Pesto Lamb Chop Dinner


 
Sometime you need quick and easy dinner and this one is really quick and easy! Marinating the lamb chops for 30 minutes makes all the difference. I buy good quality pesto from Princess Pesto who make absolutely great pesto's. The basil pesto work well with the lamb. You can serve it with either a salad and some hummus on the side or some radishes and cucumber to dip into the hummus for a more informal dinner.
 
 

What do you need:

  • 4 lamb chops
  • 4 tsp basil pesto, plus extra to serve
  • salad or crunchy vegetables
  • 2 tbsp hummus
What to do:

  1. Spread the pesto on the lamb chops and marinade it for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Fry the chops in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat until cooked to your liking (must still be a bit pink in the middle, like steak).
  3. Serve with an extra dollop of pesto, salad and a dollop of hummus.
  4. Enjoy!