Monday, May 5, 2014

California Shrimp Salad with Goddess Dressing

I am obsessed (that's putting it lightly) with the shrimp salad at a certain popular chain restaurant. It was almost like the heavens opened up and Angels sang hymns the moment I tasted that deliciously high carb salad. So obsessed that I made a ketogenic version of the goddess dressing to satisfy my crazy. I hope you enjoy too!

California Shrimp Salad

  • Fresh spinach (THE MORE THE BETTER - SPINACH IS GOOD FOR YOU, SON! I'm looking at you, Husband!)
  • 5-8 black olives
  • 2 ounces of tomatoes
  • One half of a small Haas avocado - sliced.
  • 1 bag of peeled, deveined shrimp - medium sized - may have to take tails off.
  • Seasoned salt because I'm a lazy cook. 
    • Careful though - Read the label! Might contain sugar, which my season salt does. I'm using up my last container of Lawry's and going homemade. That recipe will be linked down the road.
Thaw shrimp under cold running water for 5-7 minutes. I took the time to remove the tails while the shrimp was thawing. Once thawed, I sprinkled probably about 1-2 teaspoons of season salt on the shrimp and cooked it on low in 3 tbsps. of bacon grease - cook until no longer see through. I usually cook shrimp until it has a nice crisp on the outside.

While the shrimp is cooking, assemble your salad and get the dressing mixed!

Goddess Dressing

  • 4 ounces of cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice - preferably from a fresh lemon
  • 3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons Almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1 whole Haas avocado - remove skin and seed.
  • 2 cloves of garlic (I like garlic)
  • salt and pepper to taste
There's several ways you can do this - you can use a potato masher and mix by hand (it'll probably be a bit chunky - still delicious though), use a hand blender, or the magical Kitchen Aid thingamabobber. Whatever floats your boat. There's no special way to add the ingredients so just toss them together and mix!

Dressing: 4 servings (2.65 ounces, or approx: 1/3 cup)

Cal: 214 kcal, Total fat: 20.7g, Total Carbs: 6.4g, Fiber: 3.0g, Sugar: 1.5g Net Carbs: 3.4g 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Money, Food, and the Dreaded Grocery Shopping

I hate grocery shopping (especially with my husband). I hate dragging myself to the store where people tend to not pay attention to anything outside their bubble of stupid; taking up the entire aisle, walking very sloooooowwwwlllyyy in front of you, ignoring your presence even when you say "excuse me". One day, there may be a Royal Rumble going down in the dairy aisle if people don't get the hell out of my way! Don't get me started on the parking lot. UGH.

But, I digress, I am not here to bitch about the grocery store - I am here to share some money saving ideas when it comes to eating a ketogenic diet. Taking on an entire new diet can be very daunting when it comes to paying for it the first time, but once you figure out a system, and what you enjoy eating, going to the grocery store will be a walk in the park. Your health will thank you for it as well.

Look at the beautiful money tree! If only such thing existed!

1. Grow a Garden

A lot of people assume that the ketogenic diet is all meat. It definitely is not. Fibrous green vegetables are very important to maintain a well balanced diet. Depending on your location, and what you like to eat, grow what you can at home so you will always have fresh, nearly free vegetables on hand. It can be hard work, but the delicious noms right from the garden makes the work worth it.

I would grow a garden if I could, but unfortunately, I live in a sardine can of an apartment with no yard. I have one window that light comes through and it is low enough for my cats to completely destroy any effort I put into growing anything. Rest in peace, agave plant. If I were to grow anything in a pot on the sidewalk, I'm very sure some douche canoe neighbor will let their children rip it up or throw their cigarette butts into the pot because who has ever heard of being respectful toward other people's things, right? Yeah, yeah - sidewalks = public property. Still doesn't give them a right to be a complete asshat. (Whoa, slow down there tangent! Get back on track!)

I actually asked my Grandparents to grow spaghetti squash for me in their garden this year, and they said yes. (Yay!) I go through a lot of it especially since I use to be a pasta fiend, it is quite nice to have that substitute. Even at Wal Mart, Spaghetti Squash is expensive - priced between 98 cents - $2.99/lb. When I'm paying $8.00 to eat a damn vegetable, I know that I either need to cut back or grow it. Luckily, it can be grown. :) Can't wait for the near endless supply.

2. Buy in Bulk

If you have the ability to buy in bulk, it will make your life easier. 99% of the time, we have to cook to ensure we're eating properly so you will definitely go through the bulk goods. Since I just moved back into my hometown area - I no longer have every day access to Costco. I do have a Sam's club in my area, but I don't know yet of what they offer in regards to good ketogenic products. Some examples of stuff to buy in bulk include:

  • Meat - I tend to buy it at Wal Mart, but the quality doesn't compare to Costco's meat department. After John and I get a chest freezer, we're splitting a cow with my brother and his wife. $250.00 for a half a cow. Jackpot.
  • Coconut oil
  • Olive oil
  • Eggs
  • Heavy Cream - can be frozen in ice cube trays and stored in freezer bags. Good for popping into coffee, soups, stews and sauces.
  • Flour - almond and coconut flour.
  • Nuts - almonds, macadamia nuts, pistachio, etc. (Watch out for carb content!)
  • Chia seeds
  • Flax seeds and/or meal
  • Butter
  • Cream cheese
  • Whey Protein
3. Figuring out a meal plan = Staying on Budget

Impulse buying is a pretty big pain in the back pocket especially when you go to the store and have no idea what to buy for the week or if you are hungry. (Snack on some almonds before heading in or something...)  Having a weekly meal plan and budget to stay under will allow you to walk out of the store feeling like a boss. I know I do when I have money left over in the bank after grocery shopping. Also, unless you need condiments, stick to the outer perimeter of the store. You'll be less likely to buy junk food.

There you have it - short and sweet tips. I'd love to hear your tips on saving money on food. I'll have to post an example of my meal planning later on to give an example of what John and I eat every week, and how much I spend monthly. Definitely something I look forward to. It's almost like pantry porn. I love pantry porn. :3

Stay Frosty, my friends.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Bulletproof Coffee - Breakfast of Champions

I start my day off with bulletproof coffee.

What is it? Amazing. That is what it is. If I'm not fasting, I usually survive off of just BPC and bacon in the mornings - keeps me full and energized until I'm ready to eat which usually isn't until 7 or 8 o'clock at night. (I'm pretty sure that is a form of fasting, dumb dumb.) Bulletproof Coffee is coffee mixed with butter and coconut oil, and it is absolutely delicious. It's actually a really simple process if you have a hand blender. You can whisk the ingredients together, but the end result doesn't stand up to the blended coffee. I know from experience. As much as I love butter, I don't like tasting butter by itself floating on top of my coffee, along with the coconut oil. Yuck.

Take 8 ounces of fresh brewed coffee, add 1 tablespoon of salted butter and 1 tablespoon of coconut oil or Medium Chain Triglyceride oil (webMD explaination of what MCT oil is, since I'm lazy). Blend it with your hand blender until the coffee is frothy and dump it in a coffee mug. I always add 2 tablespoons of heavy cream into the mix to add more calories and fat.

Recipe for Bulletproof Coffee
  • 1 Cup of freshly brewed coffee
  • 1 tablespoon of salted butter
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil or MCT oil
Instructions:  Mix that shit. Drink that shit.

I know there is a big hurrah for using the finest ingredients when it comes to the food you consume, but I'm a broke bitch and I do what I have to do to ensure that I am eating close enough to a healthy diet while consuming the cheaper end of the spectrum. For instance, a lot of folks use Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter which is $4.99 for 8 ounces. I can find 1 lb of salted butter for half that price at Giant Eagle. Almond flour is just ridiculously priced, especially since low carb is becoming the next big thing; I use my coffee grinder and grind up 1 pound bag of sliced almonds I buy from Wal Mart for $8.00. May be chunkier than almond flour, but it works for baking just the same! I don't use it often so a little goes a long way.

For coconut oil, I use LouAna Coconut oil (Found at Wal Mart), but I may shell out the money to find something better. Preferably the Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil for $27.00 when I'm back in Pittsburgh next month. LouAna is supposedly bleached, and I'm not down with that even if I'm a broke bitch. I'm also considering MCT oil to try out instead of using all of my coconut oil for just my BPC since coconut oil is expensive.

I might have to go into more detail later on how I try to keep as cheap as possible when it comes to groceries in another blog post. I know folks are always interested in saving money, right!?!?

Stay Frosty, My friends.


Thursday, April 10, 2014

My Body Wants to Be Sith. Hell No, I say!

Ranty post, but I got to rant some where I guess. Why not my blog? Plus, writing this down holds me accountable - especially since my friends and family read this blog. I hope it will encourage them to not let me fall back into the mud.

I am accountable for my own action and inaction. It isn't anyone else's job to make me lose weight. It is all me. I've been doing the ketogenic diet for nearly two years now, and yet here I am back to nearly square one at 202.4 pounds. What had gone wrong? I can tell you that it is a number of things - Burning out from cooking all the time, moving, never having enough money (that has changed now that I have a real job), and just sheer laziness. I compare my douche canoe body to the dark side of the Force - it is trying to fight me always - trying to consume me.

Can I tell you I ate straight keto these past two years? Absolutely not, but 90 percent of the time, I have been in a state of ketosis with nothing to show for it, but bad breath, a better personality and less "I'm a crazy bitch thanks to sugar" moments. (At least having a better personality is a good thing, right? :P )

There is no time for excuses - If you want something, you strive for it; make it your goal to be a better person at the end of each day. It is a struggle. It is especially a severe struggle for me. Some folks can cut calories and lose all the weight without a problem - I can't. I have to be on top of my game with my calories, carbs, sugar, water consumption and how much I workout or I simply stagnate. It is the most frustrating thing ever. I see my friend already losing 50 pounds by eating keto, and she had just started doing the damn diet! I have been in a stall since my first pregnancy in 2013.

It makes me want to rip my hair out.

Instead, I'll cry for a minute, and go workout and continue to count my calories and carbs. The struggle is real, and I cannot let it eat me alive. That's a path I no longer want to take. I'm going to be the Jedi Master of my own body, I will bring it over from the dark side. I'm done letting it run the circus. It's my turn.

On that note - here's a HIIT workout for you to do today. I am doing it myself once I post this blog entry.

By the way, Fitness Blender is amazing. A lot of body weight workouts on their website. I'm so glad I discovered them because they make you work up a sweat at home! My gym membership is currently inactive at the moment, but I definitely plan on going back to weightlifting using the Strong Lifts 5x5 in two weeks. :D

<3 Squats <3

Stay Frosty, My Friends.


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Bacon Cream Cheese Pancakes with Sugar Free Maple Almond Syrup

Say that title ten times fast. Phew! If you have ever seen that mathematical show, Adventure Time, one of the main characters, Jake, decides to make bacon pancakes. He sings a catchy tune while cooking - I've had the song stuck in my head since last night so I decided to make bacon pancakes myself!

But before I dive into the recipes, listen to the awesome song:

It only took 10 seconds for the song to get stuck in my head. Now it is in yours.

You're welcome.

Sugar Free Maple Almond Syrup

  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of Stevia for baking (Available at Wal Mart)
  • 1 teaspoon of Watkin's Imitation Maple Extract (Available at Wal Mart.)
  • 1 teaspoon of McCormick's Imitation Almond Extract (Available at Wal Mart)
  • 1 teaspoon of xantham gum  (I use 99 cent Hogson Mill packets from Wal Mart since xantham gum cost your first born child, and I don't use it very often any way. Last night was literally the first time I ever used xantham gum for a recipe)

    Bring the water to a boil on your stove top and whisk in stevia until combined. Add both extracts and slow the mixture to a rolling boil. Sprinkle the xanthum gum into the mixture and whisk until thoroughly incorporated. The mixture will thicken to a nectar consistency (thin syrup). I stored the syrup in a pint mason jar. Tried two tablespoons of syrup this morning and it. is. amazeballs! One jar should be enough for 16 servings of two tablespoons. 5 calories, 2 net carbs.

Bacon Cream Cheese Pancakes

  • 1 strip of bacon (or more because bacon)
  • 2 ounces of cream cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of stevia for baking
Dice the bacon and throw it in a skillet to cook up. Mix the cream cheese and eggs together using a hand blender or a kitchen aid stand mixer until frothy, and then add the cinnamon and stevia to the party. (Mix that shit!)

Don't do what I did and just dump the bacon into the batter. It sinks to the bottom and makes it a pain in the butt to fish up. I'd say 1/8 cup of batter should make a 6 inch pancake - it is a thin batter. Once you put the batter on the skillet, sprinkle some bacon on top and allow the pancake to cook until the edges start to brown, flip over and cook the other side until firm. Voila! BACON PANCAKE! Add 2 tablespoons of syrup and enjoy.

Servings: 2
Per Serving: Calories 208 kcal, Carbs 4, Fat 17, Protein 10, Fiber 2, Potassium 127

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Keto Coco Cereal? Is This a Dream Come True?

When it comes to chocolate cereal, I am like a crack addict. . . I need my fix. I loved peanut butter cup cereal, cocoa puffs, and well anything that involved chocolate or peanut butter in milk honestly. To my joy, someone had posted a recipe for chocolate cereal on /r/ketorecipes - I had to make it.

Boy, was I NOT disappointed either.

It is the perfect consistency to be satisfy the chocolate fiend in me, and it is actually very filling. Just last night, I decided that I loved the cereal so much that I'd make bulk in a coffee can (Remember, addicted).

Adapted ketogenic recipe from Reddit User /u/LarryitSeatwDoritos

Original Recipe from Maria Mind Body Health Blog

    • 1/2 cup vanilla whey or egg white protein (I used Body Fortress Vanilla Whey Protein Powder)
    • 3/4 cup almond flour
    • 1/4 tsp baking soda
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1/4 cup coconut oil
    • 2 TBS Truvia + 1/2 TBS extra for sprinkling
    • 2 TBS water

    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). In a medium bowl, stir together the whey, almond flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, 2 tablespoons of the sweetener and salt. Add in the coconut oil until evenly distributed. Stir in the water to form a stiff dough. (Note: dough will look pretty crumbly, and not really like a dough. This is okay.) Place parchment paper on cookie sheets, and lightly grease. Sprinkle the dough in cereal-sized pieces over the parchment paper. Bake for 6-8 minutes in the preheated oven, until edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven, sprinkle the remaining Truvia, and break up the pieces into pebble-sized cereal bits.

    Out of the oven.

    And into the bowl!

    My batches of cereal go a bit longer since I only use 1/2 cup. I'd say there are more along the lines of six servings. I also used 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk and 2 tbsp. of heavy cream!

    Makes 4 servings. Per serving: 286 calories, 25g fat, 12g protein, 2g net carbs, 5g fiber (Not including the almond milk and heavy cream)