Zucchini Pumpkin Bread

Baking with whole grain flour I've milled myself is fun and tastes so incredible but I have yet to 'perfect' the ultimate whole grain load of bread.  I've tested two loaves this week and have another to test tomorrow, but in the meantime quick breads like zucchini bread, pumpkin bread, banana bread are always an easy and delicious item to bake.  I'm not a huge fan of banana bread (I could take it or leave it) but pumpkin bread and zucchini breads are my favorite!  I like to make a cream cheese spread for my pumpkin breads as an option to serve.  This makes them almost like a cupcake but HEALTHY.  (My frosting's are sugar free of course, using natural sweeteners). This bread is so tender and moist you don't need anything with it... except maybe an awesome cup of hot coffee!

Zucchini Pumpkin Bread

2 c whole grain flour (I used a mixture of hard white, soft white and whole wheat. Use what you wish!)
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
1 t cinnamon
1/2 c oil (I used grape seed oil but you could use coconut oil too for a healthy option too)
1/2 - 3/4 c sweetener (I used a mixture of Truvia and Ideal to make 1/2 cup.  You can use sugar of course)
1/2 c brown sugar or sweetener (I used Truvia brown)
1 egg
2 t vanilla
1 c pumpkin (not pie filling - use real pureed pumpkin or canned pumpkin)
1 c shredded zucchini - squeeze to get excess moisture out

Grease 9X5 loaf pan and set aside.  In a bowl mix dry ingredients; flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon.  In a mixing bowl mix your oil, sweeteners, egg, vanilla and pumpkin.  Use 1/2 c sweetener if you don't like over sweet quick breads or if you plan to use a cream cheese spread with it.  Use 3/4 c if you like your bread a little sweeter.  Use a wooden spoon, whisk or electric mixer on low.  Add the dry and mix just until blended - a wooden spoon works best as zucchini gets stuck on the beaters or whisk.  Place batter into the loaf pan and bake at 350 for 1 hour and 15 minutes.  Yours might be done before that so test the center at 1 hour.  Mine sometimes bake for 1 hour 20 minutes.  Let cool in the pan about a half hour before turning out to cool completely. 

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And the winner is.... 3 low carb pizza crust recipes put to the test - The Best Low Carb Pizza Crust Was......

After testing 3 low carb pizza crusts this weekend and then eating leftovers for 3 days... we are really sick of low carb pizza right now!  Ha ha.  But with pizza - give it a day and you'll be craving it again.  YUM!  So my previous post featured the other two recipes I tried and this is the one my husband and I picked as the winner.

The pizza was taste tested at 3 different points:
1 - tasted the dough
2 - tasted the baked crust with no toppings
3 - tasted the finished pizza with various toppings

 *I prebaked the crusts with no toppings to get a clear picture and to taste test the crusts without any toppings so I could compare fairly.

1st place:  Good taste and decent texture made this our favorite of the three tested

Came in 1st place 

1 pk yeast (2 1/4 t)
3/4 c warm water
1 t sugar to feed the yeast
1 egg
1/3 c oat fiber
1/3 c flaxmeal
1/3 c almond flour
1/4 c wheat protein isolate 8000
3/4 c wheat protein isolate 5000
1 1/2 t baking powder
1 t sea salt
2 t apple cider vinegar
1 T grapeseed soil

In a KitchenAid mixer with a dough hook, place the yeast and add warm water and sugar.  Stir once or twice and let set 4-5 minutes til foamy.  Add the rest of the ingredients and mix and knead for about 5 minutes.  Let the dough rest 2 minutes while you heavily grease a pizza pan.  Divide the dough in half as it' makes 2 pizzas.  Press into the pan.  Let it rest 5 minutes or up to 20 minutes.  Top as you wish and bake at 400 for about 15 minutes until done. 

Makes two pizzas

Heavily grease or oil your pan

Ready to top with whatever and go into the oven to bake

Low carb recipes turn out extremely different based on the brands you buy. Different brands have very different carb counts and sugar counts as well.  If you try any low carb recipe (not just on my site but anywhere) and you have used different brands or different amounts or substituted an item from the original recipe, you will have different results.  It's just how low-carb cooking is.  

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An American Housewife's Low Carb Pizza Crust Trials 2016 - 3 low carb pizza crust recipes put to the test


Last weekend I was going to make pizza for dinner by request from my husband and as I stared at my recipes I sighed to myself and said, "I need to make a bunch at the same time and taste test them all at the same time to truly compare."

So I did.
I made 3 different low carb pizza crust recipes.
And frankly, we surprised ourselves!


My stuffed cheese, low carb pizza crust got 2nd place in the taste-tests

We both thought this would be 1st place but it ended up 2nd.  The texture is most like a 'real' wheat crust but because it has a cup of low carb bake mix in it, it has that slight 'carbalose' flour taste to it that I just can't get past. It makes 2 pizzas but I made it into 1 large stuffed crust.

Came in 2nd place

1/8 c wheat protein isolate 8000
1 c Bakesquick Mix or Carbquik
1/3 c unflavored whey protein powder
1 c wheat protein isolate 5000
1/8 c wheat resistant starch 75
1 t Thick It Up
1 t sweetener of your choice
2 t baking powder
1 t sugar to feed the yeast
1 pkt Rapid Rise Yeast
1/2 c half and half
1/2 c warm water
2 eggs
2 T butter
3 T parmesan cheese
1 t apple cider vinegar
Extra wheat protein isolate to add as needed to make the dough not sticky

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl starting with the yeast, sugar and warm water, letting it get foamy before adding the rest of the dry.  Add the wet to the dry and start to knead (I used a KitchenAid mixer with a bread dough hook).  IF you need it; add the extra WPI 5000 as you would any flour, watching until the dough just comes together and isn't sticky.  Sometimes I don't need any, other times I need up to 1/3 cup.  Knead about 5 minutes.  Divide dough into 2 balls - press each onto a greased pizza pan.  Prepare your toppings.  I've baked right away AND I've let set and raise 20-30 minutes before baking.  I actually get similar results either way.  Bake at 375 approximately 20 minutes or until done.

2nd place crust

2nd crust place is the most like 'real' wheat pizza crust in texture

This was my 3rd crust that afternoon and I decided to use the whole batch in one LARGE stuffed crust pizza instead of 2 smaller


Last place. Looked like a great whole wheat pizza but was spongy and eggy in texture

Last place: Spongy and eggy in texture
We both thought this would be 2st place but it ended up 3rd.  The dough had a decent flavor and it looked like a great whole wheat pizza crust.  Unfortunately it's hard to eat because of the texture.  My husband's notes described it as spongy.  In my notes I wrote down egg-y and spongy.  I made it palatable by making this one into a BBQ Chicken and Smoked Mozzarella pizza but I admit by the time we were eating leftovers, I scraped the toppings off and ate those; throwing away the crust. I liked the taste of this dough the best.  The flavor is great because there is no carbalose flour or soy in it.  But we didn't care for the texture.

Came in 3rd place out of three

1 1/4 c almond flour (I used natural, unblanched)
1/4 c unflavored wheat protein isolate
4 T psyllium husk powder
1/2 t sea salt
2 t baking powder
2 eggs
2 T parmesan cheese
1 c boiling water

Mix the dry in the bowl.  Add eggs.  Add boiling water.  Knead until it all comes together.  Dough is very sticky.  When it forms a sticky ball, remove and place on a well greased pizza pan.  Place a piece of greased parchment over the dough before pressing or rolling out.  Top with favorite toppings and bake at 375 about 15 minutes, take out, add your toppings and bake about 5 minutes more until done.

Yummy tasting dough - good flavor

Your dough will be sticky - no worries

Covered with greased parchment to press out

Ready to go into the oven to be prebaked

(Because I need a break from typing and uploading photos. Ha ha.)

Low carb recipes turn out extremely different based on the brands you buy. Different brands have very different carb counts and sugar counts as well.  If you try any low carb recipe (not just on my site but anywhere) and you have used different brands or different amounts or substituted an item from the original recipe, you will have different results.  It's just how low-carb cooking is. 

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Over the past year I've made this particular dry rub for bbq beef and pork ribs numerous times and I swear, every single time I make it, my husband raves about it and acts like he's never had it before!  Ha ha.  He will compliment me over and over and tell me how amazing they are.  I'm glad to hear it!  I agree with him!

I posted this dry rub recipe last April and slow cooked them in the oven on a cold, chilly day.  This time I'm going to add 2 of the photos from that post, but adding the new pictures too because this time around I opted to use a slow cooker.  When I made these ribs this time, I pre-cooked them in 2 different foil wrapped bundles so I had two meals worth with just 1 day of cooking.   
This dry rub makes a huge amount; bag it in little ziplocks or store in a Mason jar for up to 3 meals.

 Dry Rub

1 T cumin
1 T paprika
1 T granulated garlic
1 T granulated onion
1 T chili powder
1 T brown sugar
2 T salt
1 t ground Coriander seed
1 t cayenne pepper
1 t black pepper
1 t white pepper

Mix in a bowl.  Sprinkle on damp beef ribs as heavy or light as you wish for your personal taste. 
This time around I chose to wrap the ribs in heavy aluminum foil - (optional: makes it easy to pull them out in one piece later) - add a dash of apple cider vinegar and a dash of orange juice to the ribs, and wrap tightly in the foil or just add to the crockpot/slowcooker.  Slow cook them on low all day til tender.  Remove ribs to finish off either on the grill or under the broiler for a few minutes to finish them up.  *If you want to make a BBQ Sauce from the juices; Opening one side of the foil, pour off the juices into a pan on the stove and then unwrap the ribs completely.  Broil the ribs under the broiler for a few minutes each side until golden brown.  Drizzle with your favorite sauce and serve.

Optional Sauce:  While the broiler pre-heats, make a sauce out of the juices you poured off the meat, by adding a heavy dose of (low sugar) ketchup, brown sugar sweetener, and a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce.  I simply kept spoon tasting until I got the sweetness I liked.  (about 1/2 cup ketchup, 1/2 cup brown sugar sweetener).   Medium high heat to boil gently until it's reduced to a thick sauce.  Broil the ribs under the broiler for a few minutes each side until golden brown.  Drizzle with the sauce and serve.

I like to use beef ribs - but you can use pork

It makes a LOT of spice mix.  Use it sparingly or heavy; up to you.

Tightly wrapped in heavy duty aluminum foil to catch all the juice as it cooks

Fix it and forget it!  Cooked all day on low, tightly wrapped, they don't dry out. Finish on the grill or under broiler.

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A Dozen Muffin Recipes! Mostly low carb, sugar free and healthy! 12 muffin recipes in one post!

The last two days I've told myself to bake some muffins and make a batch of healthy almond-thin crackers but I admit, I was procrastinating.  The problem is when that urge to snack hits you and you don't have something ready and waiting, you are often tempted to eat something not at all good for you!  Especially when you are eating low carb, wheat free and sugar free!

Before bed last night I told myself I would do muffin baking today.  At least 2 different kinds, if not three; and I would deep freeze them.  I usually do this... but I've been so preoccupied with other things that pre-baking dozens of muffins has been pushed the lower priority list.

To make it easier on myself to quickly see some of my favorite muffin recipes all in one place, I decided to post a dozen or so of them on one easy-to-click-on post.  It's a pain in the butt to compose the post - having to search, find, cut, copy, link... but it's done.

A DOZEN of my favorite recipes in one post!  Mostly for my own use but if it helps a reader or two, then all the better! 






Cream Cheese Filled Pumpkin Muffins - Healthy and Almost like a Cream Filled Pumpkin Cupcake!







 Chocolate, Chocolate Chip Muffins (Low Carb, Wheat Free, Sugar Free and with Flax) 







Almond Muffins Everyone Can Love - (even if they eat Paleo, Gluten Free, Sugar Free, Atkins, Low Carb...) OR NOT








Healthy Almond Muffins








 Homemade Blueberry Muffins - Shh, no one will know they are wheat free and sugar free!






An American Housewife's Wheat Bran Muffins










Pumpkin Muffins with Flaxseed (that happen to be low carb, flour-free, sugar free.... but you won't know it)









Low Carb, Sugar Free Muffins - (good replacement for corn muffin








Mini Cinnamon Donut Cupcakes/muffins










Sugar Free Almond Poppy Seed Muffins ( a low carb option!)









The Best Homemade Blueberry Muffins









Healthy Low Carb, Sugar Free Berry Muffins (blueberry and blackberry, etc.)






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Champagne Cookies to Use Up That Leftover Champagne

Over the holidays we entertained out of state family a few times; one of which included New Year's Eve with a mixture of people of ages and as well one pregnant.  I had prepared for the occasion with not only champagne, but sparkling grapejuice and a wonderful non-alcoholic champagne.  We had non-alcoholic champagne left over and I am loathe to throw things out, but instead I like to find ways to use them up.  Usually in the case of wine I'd make it into a cake because it's just so quick and easy, but this time wanted to do a cookie instead. 

It just so happens however that as of the first of the new year we went back to into our no sugar, no flour, low carb mode of eating to clean up our holiday-stuffed bodies and get back on track.  While I could play around with the sugar and flour in this recipe to make it low carb and sugar free, if I leave out the champagne it would just be a boring old sugar cookie!  And we can't use the champagne right now because even the non-alcoholic versions have sugar.

But I'm in luck!  We have relatives in town this week for business and we will be having them over for dinner later this week; which is perfect timing to whip these up, use up the champagne, and send the extras with them to enjoy this week in their hotel!

I have numerous copies of champagne cookies in the vintage cookbooks I have from the 40's - 70's but being lazy, and not wanting to flip through them; I found this recipe online.  It seems to be a 'hit' or 'miss' with everyone and not much wiggle room between.  They loved it or they hated it.  Most said it wasn't sweet enough for them; but others said it was perfect to enjoy with a glass of champagne or with a cup of tea.  You can use shortening instead of butter if you wish; and since it's not an especially sweet cookie, if you wish it to be sweeter, increase your sugar or sugar substitute and do a taste test. 

The only other issue some had with it was for some it was too sticky to work with.  If this is the case, try only using 3/4 cup of champagne!  Or, if you've already added it and found the dough too sticky, try chilling your dough for 2-3 hours before baking.  Will update my take on them after I make them this week for our guests!

Champagne Cookies

1/2 c candy sprinkles
1/2 c butter
1 c sugar
1 c champagne
2 c flour
2 t baking powder

Beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add the champagne, mix for 1 minute on low speed. Add the flour and baking powder.  You can add a few drops of red food color to make these pink if you wish!  Form balls or just push of a spoon and drop on a parchment lined cookie sheet, 2 inches apart. Top with sprinkles and bake at 375 for about 12 minutes until the edges are starting to brown.  Print Friendly and PDF

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies (Low carb and sugar free)

When I posted this yesterday I was in a hurry and trying to it up on the site so I could delete the photos from my files. I had made the cookies about 3 or 4 nights earlier and they were big hit so I wanted to get them posted to 'save' for future reference. I quickly grabbed the recipe, posted, and off I went.  Only...  it didn't feel right.  I kept thinking; that recipe just doesn't feel like the one I made.  Did I put the wrong one up with the wrong photos? I've done a LOT of baking this week though so I couldn't recall.

Well, this morning I'm here with my binders in front of me, and as I'm looking for a different recipe, out falls my hand written note card from the other night when I made them!  Woohoo!  Here it is.

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies
1 c peanut butter
1/2 c Truvia
1 egg
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
1/2 c sugar free chocolate chips

Mix all ingredients well. Form into balls and place on parchment paper lined or greased baking sheet.  Flatten slightly.  Bake at 325 approximately 14 minutes until golden brown.  Let cool on the baking sheet 5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. 

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#WhatsForLunch? Avocado and Egg Salad!

I really did not intend on posting this afternoon but I just finished the most lovely lunch and wanted to post because I KNEW I would 'never get around to it' otherwise!  You see, I've been cooking and baking tons this past couple weeks but you would never know it by the posts on An American Housewife because it always seems like such a task to upload the photos and type out recipes. 

However, I need to remind myself how much I absolutely enjoyed today's 'quick lunch' I literally threw together at the last second as I realized I was hungry and opened the refrigerator to get an idea of what to eat.  We are currently eating pretty low carb so my dozen hard boiled eggs have been disappearing quickly as it's my hsubands 'go to' to grab as he rushes out the door to work!  But I saw he left me 3 eggs and on the next shelf down in the refrigerator I spied a ripe avocado I had stashed there after it was ripening too quickly in the bowl on the counter.  Avocados and eggs... a match made in heaven.

Avocado and Egg Salad

3 hard boiled eggs, shelled
1 avocado
2-3 T mayonnaise
salt and pepper
*optional cooked, crumbled bacon pieces

Dice 2 of the eggs and slice the 3rd.  Add one avocado and gently mash it with a wide tined fork just enough to blend.  Season with salt and pepper.  I sometimes add real cooked bacon pieces to this but today was a non-bacon kind of day for me.  You can serve this on a bed of crisp lettuce or put it between a bagel or slices of bread if you wish to make it a substantial sandwich.

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Purging my draft recipe files: Lemon Meringue Cake

I loved this old fashioned cake when I had it years and years ago and saved this recipe when I stumbled upon it in 2008.  I never bought cake mixes at the time, much less a lemon one so this was forgotten in my files.  However, I know I can tweak this recipe to make it healthier using almond flour to make my own lemon cake, and of course use a natural sweetener to make it sugar free.

Lemon Meringue Cake

1 boxed lemon cake mix, baked as directed in two 9" pans

1 c sugar
3 T cornstarch
1/4 t salt
1/2 c water
1/4 cup lemon juice
4 t butter
1 t grated lemon peel
4 large egg yolks -- slightly beaten

4 large egg whites
1/4 t cream of tartar
3/4 c sugar

Cool the baked cakes completely and slice each layer in half so you have 4 cakes. Make the filling:  Combine sugar, corn starch and salt in a sauce pan. Stir in water, lemon juice, butter and lemon peel. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils, whisking or stirring constantly.  Remove from heat. Drizzle one cup of the hot mixture with egg yolks, whisking well.  Return to the pan and cook 2-3 minutes over medium low, until thick.  Chill.

When chilled, make the meringue. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar till foamy. Add sugar gradually, beating until stiff peaks form.

Place about 1/3 cup of filling between the cake layers.  Spread meringue over the top and sides of cake.  Bake the frosted cake in a hot 450 degree oven for about 4-5 minutes to turn the meringue golden brown on tips.  Cool completely before serving.

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Fresh Baked Buns

Back in 2008 I uploaded a photo of my freshly baked buns so I could compile a post later.  Later never came and this draft picture file just sat there waiting and waiting for me to post it!   

The difference in how you make and bake these determines their look.  I placed these close together in the pan when raising so the edges touched and they were tender and to be pulled apart.  I also often make these into individual buns by placing them farther apart. I also make loaves of bread, bread braids and cinnamon buns from this same recipe.

Classic White Dough

12 oz. warm water
1 1/2 t salt
2 T butter
4 c unbleached bread flour (or use all purpose if that is what you already have)
2 T dry milk powder
2 T sugar
1 3/4 t yeast, dry

Either place this in a bread machine (in the order your machine requires) and run on the dough setting or place into a large KitchenAid style mixer with a bread dough hook and knead/mix for up to 10 minutes or use an electric mixer and place the water, salt, sugar and yeast in first;  let it set and proof for about 2 minutes and then add the butter, dry milk and flour.   

Let your dough set for about 10 minutes after kneading to rest.  Remove the dough from the machine or the mixer bowl.  Divide it in half.  Then each half into half.  Then each of those halves into half.  This is how you will get fairly equal sized balls.  If making rolls to go with a meal divide them until you have golf ball sized balls.  If using for hamburger buns, stop dividing the dough when they are double that size so they will be large enough for the hamburger patties.  Roll in your floured hands and place on greased or parchment lined baking sheets. Letting them rise a bit will give you a taller fluffier bun but you can also bake them right away if you are pressed for time and don't mind a dense roll.  Bake at 375F for approximately 15 minutes but this can be up to 22 minutes depending on the size buns you make, the thickness of your baking sheet and your oven.  When they are golden brown remove them, brush the tops with butter for a softer bun and let cool to warm to serve as rolls or cool completely and serve as hamburger buns.

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Purging my draft recipe files: Sally Lunn Bun's

This is an English recipe I've had sitting in my files for about 8 years now.  I'm going to leave it posted exactly as I collected it and put it into a draft file.  I haven't made this exact recipe yet though!

Sally Lunn Buns

3/4 oz Fresh Yeast
1/4 C Castor Sugar (extra fine sugar)
2 Cups Bread Flour
grated zest of one lemon
1 large egg - beaten
2 oz soft butter

Cream the yeast with 2 tsp sugar, 1/2 C of the flour and 2/3 C tepid water in a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm spot to froth, about 15-20 minutes. Lightly grease 2 small round cake pans (6 inch if you can find them). In England they are referred to as sandwich tins.

Put the remaining flour into a large bowl and mix in the remaining sugar and lemon zest. Make a well in the center, spoon in the yeasty mix and almost all the egg (save a spoonful for glazing). Use a large wooden spoon to mix well, then knead in the softened butter with your hands until the dough leaves the sides of the bowl, adding a little extra flour if necessary. Cover with lightly oiled plastic wrap and leave in a warm spot to raise about 1 hour.
Punch down, knead lightly and divide into 2 neat rounds. Drop into the sandwich tins, glaze the tops with the last of the egg and cover loosely with the oiled plastic wrap. Preheat the oven to 425*F (220*C). When the dough has risen by half, bake the loaves on the same shelf for about 15 minutes until risen and golden brown. Serve warm.Print Friendly and PDF

Purging my draft recipe files: Split Pea Soup

Almost all the split pea soup recipes I've made are similar and this one is no different.  I have a container in the deep freezer right now with a meal of split pea soup.  I had made a batch, we ate half and I froze the other half for a future meal.  Quick and easy.

Split Pea Soup

1 T olive oil
1 chopped medium onion
4 carrots, thinly sliced
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 T dried thyme leaves
salt and pepper
15 oz. chicken broth
1 bag (16 oz) green split peas, picked over and rinsed
Ham bone plus 2 cups ham cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 to 2 T fresh lemon juice

In a heavy pot with a lid, saute' onion, carrots, celery, and thyme in oil. Add salt and pepper. Cook until vegetables begin to soften, 5 to 8 minutes.  Add broth, split peas, ham bone, and 5 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, partially cover, and simmer 45 minutes.   Remove and discard bone from soup. Working in batches, puree 1/2 the soup in a blender, return to pot. Add ham cubes, and simmer until heated through. Add water if it's too thick.  Season to taste with salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

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Puring my draft recipe files: Leeks in Cream

Back in the spring of 2008 I wanted to try to start eating more leeks.  They never really caught on in our family though. This is so simple and uses such a small amount of bread crumbs and cheese that I think I might have to give it a go! 

Leeks in Cream

4 Leeks - trimmed and sliced diagonally into 3/4 inch chunks
3/4 c cream
2 T dried Bread Crumbs
2 T grated cheddar cheese
salt and pepper

Boil leeks in salted water for 5 minutes then drain well. Pour into a shallow heatproof dish. Pour cream over and sprinkle with the crumbs, cheese and salt and pepper. Bake at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes until bubbling and golden brown on top. Cool 5 minutes before serving.
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Purging my draft recipe files: Shpherd's Pie

I saved this recipe back in 2008 to make not with lamb (I don't eat lamb) but with beef.

Shepherd's Pie

1 1/2 lb lamb, minced
1 onion chopped
1 carrot coarsely grated
1 T olive oil
1 T flour
1 t rosemary, ground or fine chopped
2 c beef, pork or vegetable stock
dash of Worcestershire sauce
2 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 stalk of celery, chopped
2 T butter
1 T grated cheddar cheese
sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Brown the lamb in a pan, stirring until cooked and crumbly. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate. Saute the onion and carrot in the pan juices with a little oil if necessary until softened. Sprinkle in flour and cook for one minute then add the herbs and stock, stirring as it comes to a boil. Season and mix in Worcestershire sauce to taste then return the lamb and simmer for 15 minutes. Pour into a greased baking dish. Boil the potato and celery until tender, about 10-15 minutes. Drain and mash smooth  with the butter and salt and pepper. Spoon the mashed potatoes over the meat mixture, spreading with the back of a fork. Sprinkle with the cheese and broil until lightly golden and crispy.Print Friendly and PDF

Purging my draft files: Appetizer idea - Shrimp Puffs

Oh my goodness... this one has been sitting in my draft files since the spring of 2008 just waiting for me to make them!  I did, but they sure look good.

Shrimp Puffs

Bread pieces, pinched and ripped from 2 slices bread
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/3 c mayonnaise
1/4 c fine diced onion
1/4 c fine diced red bell pepper
1 t Dijon mustard
1/4 t pepper
1- 8 oz can tiny shrimp or 1/2 c fresh shrimp, chopped and diced

Mix ingredients well. Shape into 1 1/2" balls on baking sheet.  Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and done.   Print Friendly and PDF

Purging my draft files: Artichoke Casserole

About 10 years ago I started to make a spinach casserole our family really loved and when I saw this artichoke casserole recipe I saved it to my files as we really love artichokes too.  It got lost in the drafts and never made.  I'm putting it out as I will never make it if I don't post it and 'remember' it when I'm brain storming recipes!

Artichoke casserole

2 cans artichoke hearts in water
2 cans french style green beans
1/2 c olive oil
1 1/2 c bread crumbs
1 c romano cheese
1 small onion
2 cloves garlic

Saute onions and garlic in olive oil. Add beans and artichokes, chopped and drained. Simmer 5 to 10 min. Mix in the cheese and bread crumbs.  Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes.  Print Friendly and PDF

Purging more draft recipes from my files: Beef and Sausage Meatloaf with Mushroom Gravy

Since 2006, I've collected many recipes in my 'files' that I wanted to remember, to make, to tweak, change to make our own using healthier options, etc.  This one is a 'Great Grandma' recipe - old fashioned and using not just one, but two cans of mushroom soup.   

Beef and Sausage Meatloaf with Mushroom Gravy

1 lb ground beef
1/2 lb sausage
2 c instant oatmeal

1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 small can mushroom pieces
1 small onion, diced
1 beaten egg
salt and pepper to taste
1t seasoned salt
1 c milk

1 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 small cans mushroom pieces
1 c milk

Mix all ingredients together. Shape into a loaf in a baking pan.  Bake in 350 degrees approximately 1 1/2 hours, or until done.  Drain. Mix the gravy ingredients.  Pour over meatloaf. Bake 10 more minutes or until the gravy bubbles. Remove from the oven and let set for 10 minutes to set up before slicing to serve.

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Low-carb Gluten-free Chocolate Almond Cake

From my files as I have 250 files 'waiting' for me to make and post!

Low-carb Gluten-free Chocolate Almond Cake

1/2 c Cake-ability*
2 c almond flour
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
1 t instant coffee
Sweetener to equal 1/2 c sugar
1/2 t salt
1 t baking powder
2 eggs, separated
1/2 c sour cream
1/2 c oil
1/2 t vanilla
1/2 t almond

Preheat oven to 350° F.  Grease a regular sized (bread style) loaf pan with non-stick spray. Place a bowl of water on the bottom shelf of the oven. This helps to keep the cake moist.

Combine Cake-ability, almond flour, cocoa, coffee, sweetener, salt and baking powder. Add egg yolks, sour cream, oil and extracts, stirring to mix well.

In a glass or stainless steel bowl beat egg whites to soft peak stage. Fold into batter.  Turn into prepared loaf pan and bake until a tester comes out clean - 25-30 minutes.  Cool in pan 5 minutes then turn out to finish cooling.

Cake-Ability is no longer available.  
A popular substitute recipe is this one;

1/4 cup egg white powder (like JustWhites)
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 Vitamin C tablet - crushed

Mix.  Store air-tight.  Use when called for in recipes.  

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Cutting your own large boneless pork loin into roasts and chops! Cutting instructions too!

If you buy boneless pork roasts and boneless loin chops, you can easily spend upwards of $18 on the roasts and $9 for a package of 4 chops.  Savings when you cut these yourself is HUGE. And it's not difficult at all. 

You can find the best price for a large boneless pork loin at your local membership warehouse (Costco, Sam's, etc.) - you can buy one for approximately $12-15.

The instructions for cutting are right on the packaging.  I've taken a picture of it with my camera to post here.  These are instructions for cutting a boneless pork loin into 2-4 roasts and 12-18 pork loin chops, depending on how large you make your cuts and how many people you are serving.

I own a simple, affordable Weston food saver so I just seal up the roasts into packages, and then put 4 chops into each package.  You can use any freeze bag or freezer paper though.  Just bundle up tight, and put into your deep freezer for future use.

I got two large pork roasts and a dozen, thick boneless pork loin chops ready for future meals.  

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