10/27/21

Low Carb, Keto - Spaghetti Inside a Garlic Pastry Crust

  

When I decided to try making this 'idea' I had in my head, I didn't know how it would turn out but since I had one of my old cell phones sitting on the kitchen counter, I grabbed it every once in a while and snapped some photos.  I'm glad I did... because this was pretty yummy!

I was busy yesterday and had left the house early so I had nothing out thawing for dinner, nor had any ideas of what to make.  When I had to brainstorm something fairly fast for dinner, a keto spaghetti came to mind.  I normally like to use Great Low Carb Bread Company Low Carb Pasta, but I'm currently out of all but their elbow macaroni.  However, I had Palmini Hearts of Palm Pasta - which I always keep some on hand in the pantry, as I can find that locally and don't have to order it online.

There is no recipe for this, it's more of an idea I had when getting ready to make a regular keto style spaghetti and garlic bread dinner.

Use your favorite keto/low carb spaghetti sauce, faux pasta and favorite keto Bread Product.


Keto Spaghetti Inside a Garlic Bread Pastry

Your favorite keto/low carb spaghetti sauce
Your favorite keto/low carb bread - thin sliced
Your favorite keto/low carb pasta
Mozzarella Cheese
Parmesan Cheese
Butter
Garlic, minced
Garlic salt
Parsley

Prepare your keto pasta of choice, add a bit of butter or oil so it doesn't stick while you prepare the pan.
Cut the crusts off enough slices of keto or low carb bread, enough to cover whatever size pan you are using.  SAVE the crusts for another dish!  I save all my keto bread ends and bits in a baggy in the freezer and use them to make 'keto bread crumbs' and stuffing for a keto Thanksgiving.
Use a rolling pin to flatten the bread slices.
Melt some butter (amount depends on the number of bread slices) - start with about 1 stick or 1/2 cup.
Add about 2 teaspoons minced garlic, a 1/2 t garlic salt and about a tablespoon of parsley.
Brush each slice of flattened bread on both sides and start to lay them in your pan of choice, overlapping the seams just a little to cover your pan.
Use your fingers to seal the seems a little bit.
Place a layer of mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese over the bread pastry crust bottom.
At this point you can pre-bake your bread for about 8 minutes or so. If you don't have time, skip it.  The bread just won't be quite as crunchy on the bottom.
Layer your spaghetti sauce and keto pasta into your pan in as many layers as you wish.  Fill your pan.
(If you use a sauce that is really runny or has a lot of liquid, you can simmer it ahead of time to reduce it to a nicer, thicker sauce.)
Top your pan with more garlic/parsley/butter brushed breads.

Bake at 350 approximately 40 minutes or until it's heated through, bubbly and golden brown.




I didn't have my favorite keto pasta on hand but I always have Palmini.  I rinsed it twice and then boiled it in water for about 10 minutes to soften it a bit. 

 

 

 Cut the crusts off your bread and save them for another recipe like stuffing or use for bread crumbs.

  

 

 Now roll them out with a rolling pin to flatten them. 

 

  

And brush both sides with melted butter with garlic and parsley in it.


 Start to line whatever pan you wish to use - based on the number of servings you need to make.

  

The pan is covered with garlic bread, seams gently pressed together. 

 

Heating my sauce to reduce it a bit and make it thicker so it doesn't saturate the bread.


 A thin layer of mozzarella and parmesan.

 

 

This time I started with a bit of sauce over the cheeses.  I thought my cheese layer would seal the bread but next time I make this I'll pre-bake the bread with the cheese layer first for about 8 minutes and then I'll top with the keto pasta, followed by the sauce.  I think this will seal the bottom bread layer better from getting soft.

  

Layering 

 



 Finish the top of your pan of spaghetti with the same melted butter/garlic brushed slices of keto bread.

   

Into the oven!



I baked mine about 40 minutes at 350 degrees.


When I served it, I flipped my pan over onto a serving tray as I had used a rounded, pretty, half-circle loaf pan.  I popped it back into the oven with the curved side up, to toast the underside (now topside) of the bread.   If I had used a regular flat bottomed pan to bake it in, we could simply cut and serve much like lasagna.







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You might be interested in some of the products related this post:  I can find some keto products locally, but I buy many of them online from Netrition - and have for almost ten years.  I actually became an affilate for them because I like and use them myself.

I make my own spaghetti sauce and freeze it in food-sealed bags but of course there are many low carb, sugarfree and keto sauces available.  If you can find any locally, you can check out my affiliate link on the Netrition Home Page.

My favorite keto pasta is the Low Carb Bread Company version but it's not something you can find locally and I have to order it.  It's also pretty expensive (as is all keto and low carb foods!) but I do try to keep some in the pantry at all times.  I use their shells, rotini, fettucini, spaghetti, penne and elbow macaroni.

 

Low Carb Pasta Great Low Carb Bread Company Low Carb Pasta 

 

 

 

 

 

Because I know I'll probably run out of my favorite keto pasta before I can budget a new keto/low carb foods order, I always keep Palmini brand on hand in the pantry for back up!  I CAN get this locally, so it's easy to pick up during our normal grocery trips.

Hearts of Palm Pasta Palmini Hearts of Palm Pasta

 

 

 

 

 

Recently a LOT of companies have been coming out with keto bread... which I love because I've never found a perfect keto bread recipe I loved so much I'd rather make it than buy!  I used to order the Low Carb Bread Company bread because they were one of the few making it and I had no local options.  In the past 6 months or so, Lewis Bakery and now Arnold's have both been popping up randomly at my local grocery stores.  NOT in stock all the time and they seem to be 'testing' the market before they commit to carrying it full time (?).  So I use both as I can find them and order keto bread online when I can't.

Low Carb or Keto Bread of your choice.  I know a lot of people love this one - although I typically use Lewis Bakery or Arnold's.



647 Bread Schmidt / Old Tyme 647 Bread  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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10/24/21

From my Grandmother's Recipe Box: French Cream Pie (a fruit and cream ice box pie)

 


French Cream Pie

1/2 lb. graham crackers - rolled fine - butter a cake pan (large) put in 1/2 of the crax crumble. 
1/2 c butter (very soft) add 1 cup powdered sugar and 2 unbeaten eggs, mix thoroughly and pour over crax crumbs.

Whip 1 pt. cream add to 2 cups diced peaches and 1/2 cup nutmeats.
Pour over the egg mixture then cover with rest of crax crumbles.

Let stand 12-24 hours in ice box or a cool place.  

Serves 12 generously. 
Can use other fruit instead of peaches but I like peaches best of any I've tried.










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10/10/21

A make-ahead or use now low-carb, keto pie crust... make two! One for now and one for the freezer!

 keto pie crust - low carb and sugar free

 

There are certain foods that have an unwritten rule about them:  If you're going to make one, make two.  Pie crusts are one of those things.  You've already got the ingredients out, it will only take about 5 minutes more and you know, that whole 'easy as pie' thing.

Last weekend I was craving a pie but wasn't sure when I would get the time to make one.  However, when it comes to pie, the crust is always a little more time consuming and throwing together almost any kind of pie seems so much easier when you already have a crust ready to go.  That's why I made a crust... and then made two.

This one is a keto version since we primarily eat low carb and sugar free.  This is one of two pie crusts I use (the other already posted on the website a few times).  In my opinion, all almond flour based pie crusts are persnickety and a bit fragile so keep this one cold and pop it into the freezer for 1 minute or so if it gets too warm when you are working with it.  So what if your crust isn't 'pretty'?  Anyone who judges you on pretty pie crusts doesn't deserve to have a piece of your yummy homemade dessert anyway....

Low Carb Pie Crust

1 c almond flour
4 T coconut flour
dash salt
6 T cold butter
1/2 t xanthan gum
2 oz. cream cheese
1 egg
2 t apple cider vinegar

In a food processor, briefly pulse the flours, xanthan gum and salt.  Add the butter and cream cheese, pulse again just till it turns crumbly.  Add the egg and vinegar, and pulse a few times until it just starts to come together and forms a ball. 

Turn the disk out onto lightly greased parchment or saran wrap and place another on top.  Roll out as usual to form your pie crust.  Almond flour crusts are more fragile than wheat based, so carefully use the parchment or saran wrap to transfer the crust to the pie plate.  (You can see me doing this in one of the photos below.)

Crimp or press the edges and cut off excess if needed.  I covered mine in plastic wrap and popped them into the freezer to use later this week but you can also use them immediately.  Put them into the freezer while you prepare a filling of your choice, remove, fill and bake in a preheated oven according to your pie direction.

You can also prick the bottom crust with a fork and pre-bake the crust until golden and flaky, let cool and use for an unbaked pie or dessert like with a pudding filling.

 

 

 Pulse just until it forms a ball.

 keto pie dough

 

Ready to cover and roll

 pie crust ready to roll

 

Pressing into a pie plate with the help of the saran wrap

 pressing a fragile pie crust into a pie plate 


Press the edges to smooth out cracks or rips.  Use pieces to patch if necessary. Freeze for a minute if it's too warm to work with.



Crimp or pinch the edges or make them fancy if you wish.  You can also freeze at this point.

homemade pie crust using almond flour, keto and low carb



 

 

 

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Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Coffeecake - Keto style

 

 Keto pumpkin cheesecake coffee cake

I certainly keep it real on this site, and lousy photos taken quickly on my cellphone is one of the ways!  And to make it better this time... I don't have a finished product picture!

One day last week I whipped up a pumpkin spice cake with a layer of cheesecake and a layer of streusel.  Lots of streusel. And I usually throw in whatever nuts we have on hand, usually almonds and pecans and sometimes walnuts.  I've added a little flax before as well.  I would add some oatmeal except this a low-carb version so... nope.

Normally I also do not like baking with coconut flour... I can taste it in any food it's used in, even in small amounts, and I really don't like it.  But when it's a pumpkin or carrot based cake, cupcake, muffin or bread, I'm totally ok with coconut flour as it blends perfectly and doesn't stand out at all. 

Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Coffeecake - Keto Style

Topping:
1 c almond flour
1 c pecans, chopped
1/4 c toasted chopped almonds or sliced almonds
2/3 c brown Swerve
1 t cinnamon
6 T butter, soft or melted

Cake:
2 c almond flour
1/4 c quality coconut flour
2 t baking powder
1 t pumpkin pie spice
1/8 t salt
1 c pumpkin
3 eggs
3 T cream
1/2 c sweetener (erythritol/monkfruit)
2 t vanilla

Cheesecake Layer:
12 oz. cream cheese
1/2 c sweetener (erythritol/monkfruit)
1 egg
1 t vanilla
1 t espresso powder
2 T water
1/8 t pumpkin pie spice

Mix the streusel topping together in a bowl and set aside.

For the cake, mix the dry ingredients:  almond flour, coconut flour, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt.  Add the pumpkin, eggs, cream, sweetener and vanilla.  Mix well.

Line a 9" baking pan with parchment paper and spread half the cake batter in the pan.

For the cheesecake layer:  Mix the cream cheese and sweetener until smooth, then add the egg, espresso, vanilla, water and spice. 

Spread this over the pumpkin batter in the pan.  Spread the second half of the pumpkin batter over the cheesecake layer.  Top with the streusel topping. 

Bake at 350 for approximately 45 minutes.  Let it cool completely and then chill in the refrigerator at least 2-3 hours. 

 










  


 

 

  




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Blue Diamond Almond Flour, Gluten Free, Blanched, Finely Sifted 3 Pound bag  

 

 

Swerve Sweetener, Brown Bundle, 12 oz pack of 2 

 

 

 

 

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10/6/21

Homemade Keto Buns - 6 net carbs (Really yummy and a great texture!)

    
Another batch, hot and fresh from the oven!  Second day in a row...

I've previously used this same recipe and same keto flour to make bread, and it was fine.  One of those "fine for now but....." recipes.

Last night I wanted to make hamburger buns and decided to use my same recipe and same keto flour, since I do use it exclusively for my Southern Keto Biscuits and I love it.  So without much confidence in the end result, I went ahead and made the buns to use in our Chicken Bacon Ranch Sliders.  

They turned out just lovely!  I want to make sure I get them down into my saved recipes so here we are.

The main difference in ingredients or method between the initial trial run of this recipe (the bread I wasn't completely in love with) and the buns I'm very happy with is the yeast I used.  I've found I must use Fleischman rapid rise yeast for the right texture and rising I like.  (Link if you're insterested in the exact one:  Rapid rise instant yeast)

The recipe is originally from King Arthur and is printed on the back of their keto flour. All the previous times I've used it for breast I've used an active dry yeast, but never the rapid rise because I never keep it on hand and almost never use it.  However, I couple months ago, during a "stock the pantry and freezer" grocery trip, I randomly picked up a strip at the store and put it into the freezer and forgot about it.  

Last night as I prepared to make the dough, I remembered I had seen some yellow envelopes of yeast stuck in the freezer and grabbed one out.  It was the rapid rise yeast and BINGO.  That was all the difference in this bread dough. 

Keto Buns

3 1/2 - 3 2/3 c King Arthur Keto Flour
1 1/2 c water - cool, not as warm as with regular yeast as you don't proof it
1 t white vinegar
1 1/2 t Rapid rise instant yeast
1 t salt
2 T soft butter

Combine all the ingredients into the bowl of your stand mixer.  Use a dough hook to knead the dough for 5 minutes.  Use a little more flour or a little more water drizzled to make sure the dough is mixed well. Cover the dough and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.

Shape the dough into buns and place in a greased pan.  Cover with sprayed or greased plastic wrap and place in a warm place to rise.  (I turn on my oven, place the plastic wrap over and then turn the oven off so it's barely warm; and then place the pan in the barely warm oven with the light on).  Let it rise until it's about 1" above the top of the pan for bread or doubled for buns.  This might take 1 1/2 - 2 hours. 

Bake in a hot oven (350 degrees) for about 30-35 minutes until golden brown.  Remove and let cool a few minutes then turn out onto a rack to cool completely before cutting.  If you cut when they are still hot or warm, the centers will be a different texture; dense and squished and too wet.

King Arthur bread loaf made with this recipe yields 18 slices at 3 carbs each.  I made this into 9 buns so they would 6 carbs each.

 

Hot keto buns fresh from the oven


 

2 Strips Fleischmann’s RAPID RISE INSTANT YEAST (6 Packs Of 1/4 Oz) For Bread

 

 

King Arthur, Keto Wheat Flour Blend, Non-GMO Project Verified, 1-to-1 Substitute for All- Purpose Flour, 16 Ounces 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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9/28/21

Old School Pizza Burgers! And I made them into a Keto Pizza Burger Too!

Old School Vintage Pizza Burgers
Pictured are low carb - using a keto bun and served with keto 'faux' fries - not potato based french fries
 

When I get a food memory/craving stuck in my head, it lives there until I finally make it.  I got it into my head I just had to have something from my childhood.  Not just my childhood, but an elementary school lunch item; pizza burgers.

Now, this was years (decades!) ago - back when school lunches were really, really good.  Homemade by the lunch ladies.  The smell of the homemade foods wafted up the stairs and down the halls of the classrooms all morning long so by the time lunch came around we were going crazy and more than ready to eat, as we'd been smelling the delicious aromas all morning!

In addition to being blessed to be in grade school back in the early 80's when lunches were homemade, hot, filling and so good; I went to a small, private school so the government didn't supply us with food or money; the talented lunch ladies did their own menu-making, ordering, buying, and cooking.  Another reason our lunches were so good. 

I know a lot of people remember 'pizza burgers' from the good old days of school lunches, but with all the different cooks making them homemade back then; every school made them a little different.  The pizza burger I remember isn't the same as the one my husbands school served.  As a matter of fact they dreaded pizza burger day!  He said their school served a 'weird, slimy patty' 'smothered with sauce and sprinkled some cheese on top'.  He thought I was crazy to be craving pizza burgers from my childhood until I explained that was nothing like our schools!

Our school pizza burgers were huge.  They were served on oversized hamburger buns.  They were a loose-meat version with a delicious, tangy sauce; open-faced, and usually had a mixture of American and mozzarella cheese on top.  

(Another thing - back then you could go back for as many helpings as you wanted as long as there was food... and you NEVER had to have your lunch ticket punched a second time or paid more.  After everyone went through the line, whatever was left, everyone got as much as they wanted so food wasn't wasted or thrown out.)  

Now, I wasn't able to recreate it exactly to my memory.  But it's close.  So close.  I'm going to tweak it a little more at some point in the future - as I know my school used canned tomato soup in their version as well; and we don't ever have canned tomato soup in our house because we are lowcarb/sugarfree.

To make it a little more difficult, I was having to not only recreate something from a childhood memory, but we eat sugar free and low carb so I had to try to make it keto!  

If anyone from the internet stumbles upon this recipe through searching; remember - YOUR school might have made these differently.  I suggest you do your own taste tests and see if it's similar to the version your school cooks made.  Mine just needs a little bit of tweaking (needs a bit more... tang I think) but it was SO close, I was happy with the results for now.  (And, since this is the first time I've craved them in over 30+ years, I might not have another craving for years!  Ha ha).


Old School Pizza Burgers

1 1/4 lb. ground beef (approximately - I didn't weigh)
1/2 lb. (about) ground ham
1/4 c onion, finely minced
1- 6 oz. can tomato paste
1/2 c water (use the can to pour as to rinse out the can as well)
1 c (scant) ketchup  (I'm going to use part tomato soup next time as I KNOW my school did)
1 1/2 T dried parsley
1 t Italian seasoning
1/2 t salt and some fresh ground black pepper
onion powder
sage
oregano
2 t vinegar
2 - 3 T cream or whole milk

Hamburger buns
Shredded mozzarella
Shredded or sliced up American cheese


Brown the ground beef and onion, add the ground ham. 

(I used an S-blade in my food processor.  I didn't want to over process it, but after I was ready to add it, realized I should have processed mine a little more - but I was lazy and didn't want to bother so the pieces in mine in the photos are little larger than I'll do next time).  Season with salt and pepper. 

While the meat cooked I mixed up the sauce separate (although you TOTALLY could add it to the meat in the same pan.  I just made mine while the meat was still cooking as I like to multi-task and have no patience to just stand around browning meat without doing other things as well.)  Mix the tomato products and the seasonings.  For the onion powder, safe and oregano, I started with about a teaspoon of each.  You can adjust this later.

Add the tomato mixture to the meat.  Let it simmer for about 10 minutes over low.

After mixing with the cooked meats and letting it simmer for a few minutes to blend the flavors; do a taste test.  I added about 1/2 - 1 teaspoon more of each of the oregano, sage and onion powder.   When you are happy with the meat filling, stir in about 1/2 cup cheddar cheese IF you wish - or some of the American cheese into the mixture.  Use the rest of the mozzarella and/or American for the top later.

On a baking sheet (lightly greased if you wish) but not on parchment as the buns need to crisp up a bit, lay out about 8 buns to make 16 sandwiches.  Or lay out 4 buns, open to make 8 sandwiches and you can freeze the rest of the meat mixture.

NOTE:  I used KETO buns for this meal with only 4 carbs total per whole bun, so only 2 carbs total when eating just the one half, as these are served "open faced".  Regular buns usually run about 24-30 carbs, so each half would be about 12-15 carbs.

Sprinkle the tops with shredded cheeses.  Bake at 350 or 375 (I baked at 370) until golden brown buns, melted cheese and heated through.  About 12-15 minutes depending on the heat of your oven.

 

 

 ground beef with onions  

grinding up ham in a food processor

making sauce for pizza burgers

pizza burger mixture

old school pizza burger meat/ham mixture

old school pizza burgers ready for cheese

 

pizza burgers with american and mozzarella cheese




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