Sunday, February 27, 2011

Dr. Atkins' Memorial Service

As we all know, no matter what anyone else does to improve the Atkins Diet, Dr. Atkins was and is our GURU! He is alone responsible for more good health than any other doctor I can think of! With the possible exception of Dr. Jonas Salk. And at the time, he was alive, he was up against the villification of the entire medical community. It didn't stop him. Not many could withstand what he did and keep fighting the good fight.

During my Sunday catching up on Dana Carpender's blog I read her report of Dr. Atkins' memorial service. She actually was at it. Before I finished, I found myself tearing up- this man died way too soon! Anyway, if you'd like to read her report on the service, here it is:

Are We Eating Too Much Fat? Courtesy of Dana Carpender

It's Sunday folks, so I have had extra time to spend catching up on reading info from my various favorite low carb gurus. I've got about ten more of Dana Carpender's to read, but I came across one that is really relevant for us on the Atkins diet. A reader had asked her if there was a limit to the fats we eat. This article addresses, not only, fats, but protein, carbohydrates and calories. It says it all in less than a page. It is well worth the read! So, take a look:

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Mini Enoki Mushroom Fritattas from Dr. Ben Kim's Newsletter

Dr. Ben Kim gave another Atkins friendly recipe in his newsletter today. I think this could be made with almost any herbs. Since I am a basil lover and have garlic chives growing, that would be my choice. Also, I think I would shave a little mozzarella over the tops at the end. If you have trouble finding Enoki mushrooms, they are usually in any Asian grocery store. Otherwise, this is adaptable for any mushroom.

He recommends combining this recipe with rice or noodles- we can all ignore that, right OFL's? LOL

Low Carb Bread Courtesy of Jan2

Jan2 has found low carb bread with only 1 net carb. I'm posting it on here so it will be a ready reference. You can also plug in your zip code on their site and find a store near you that sells it.

For anyone interested in the bread that Jan2 bought from Julian Bakery, here it is:

Dana Carpender's Update on Gelatin

For those of you OFL's who have been taking gelatin to strengthen bones and muscles, not to mention hair and nails, this is Dana Carpender's update on taking it since September, 2010. For those of you who are new, there is a wonderful bit of research provided by Doreen on an earlier post. Here is the update from Dana's blog, "Hold the Toast." 

Friday, February 25, 2011

Joe's Scramble Courtesy of Dana Carpender

Good evening folks. I've just been reading Dana Carpender's blog, "Hold the Toast," and she has posted an incredibly simple sounding recipe that sounds wonderful. It's called Joe's Scramble and is originally from San Francisco. This is lunch for me tomorrow!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Stevia in the Raw

I've just been looking at Dana Carpender's blog, "Hold the Toast," and there's a very interesting post today on the new stevia in the raw, which can be used instead of sugar in baking. To those who are very sugar sensitive, do read this, because the stuff has sugar in it as does granular Splenda. .

I try not to use any sugar substitutes as they all add just a wee bit of carb. I'm even trying to wean myself from sweetened coffee. And another BTW, some people are very sensitive to Atkins Bars because they contain a very small amount of sugar. I don't eat them regularly, because I was near diabetic when I started the Atkins WOE again, and I try not to eat anything at all with sugar listed as an ingredient. I do love them once in a while for a treat or when I'm out and can't get back to the house for a regular meal.

Stuffed Eggplant Courtesy of Gabby

Well, here I am a day late with posting this promised recipe for stuffed eggplant. Depending on the veggies you include in the recipe, it has a load of fiber. I use 1/2 of the eggplant as a one dish meal, with maybe only sliced tomatoes as a side. If you prefer, it can be made without any meat and used as a filling side dish. It can also be done without the cheese topping and is very good that way. I have used the stuffing as stuffing for poultry also. In that case, I use chicken stock or broth.

Stuffed Eggplant

1 medium/large eggplant slice in half lengthwise (leave the peeling on
olive oil
1 MIMS crumbled and toasted under the broiler to make faux bread crumbs
1/2 medium onion diced finely
1 small stalk of celery finely diced
about 1/4 cup of finely diced red bell pepper (green is fine also- I like the red for color and the sweeter flavor
1/2 small carrot grated
1/2 medium to large tomato with seeds and pulp removed (diced)
1/2 pound of ground beef (this can be any ground meat you prefer. I have used ground turkey and switched the beef broth for chicken broth.)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano 
grated mozzarella cheese (or any grated cheese you prefer)

After slicing the eggplant in half lengthwise, cut out the center till the outside left is about a half inch wide. Brush the cut edges with a little bit of olive oil. Make a MIMs and when cool enough to handle, crumble it and lightly toast it under the broiler to make faux bread crumbs. The toasting really doesn't have to be done, but I like the finished consistently better when it's toasted. Crumble the beef into a saute pan, along with all veggies except the tomato, and brown till the meat is done. Place the MIMs, veggies (including tomato), meat and herbs in a mixing bowl and thoroughly mix all together. Add broth in small bits and work into the filling till it is the consistency of stuffing. When thoroughly mixed, stuff each half of the eggplant, heaping it at the top into a small mound. Cover with grated cheese and bake in a 350 degree oven for 35 - 40 minutes or until the eggplant is done. Test by inserting a steak knife into the edge of the eggplant.  If you want to cut the oven time in half, you can brush the scooped out eggplant with the oil and micro it till it's tender.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Easy Cheesy Cauliflower Casserole Courtesy of Gabby

Having been an executive chef for many years, when I retired I was still a little "snobby" about how to cook things. I didn't even own a microwave for a while, and finally succumbed and bought one, in case I wanted to "warm" something up (ONLY!) Well, times have changed! I have found a new friend in my microwave. This cauliflower casserole is incredibly easy to do and very tasty!

Cauliflower Casserole

1 12 - 16 oz package of frozen cauliflower florets
1/2  red bell pepper diced
1/2 medium onion diced
2 tablespoons sour cream
3-4 Tablespoons ranch dressing
grated cheese- amount to your preference (I use any types I have on hand and usually try to use at least two types of cheese.)
1 teaspoon dried basil

Place cauliflower florets in an oven proof casserole dish with just enough water to cover the bottom under the florets. Sprinkle the florets with lemon pepper generously. Microwave on high 3 - 5 minutes just till florets are fork tender. Drain the water. Saute diced onions and peppers in olive oil till just tender or microwave till tender. Mix cauliflower, onions, peppers, sour cream, basil and Ranch dressing. Make sure all the florets are coated- if not add more ranch dressing. Then add enough grated cheese till there is cheese throughout the casserole. Microwave again for a couple of minutes till the cheese is melted. Cover the top with more grated cheese and place under the oven's broiler till the cheese begins to brown and is bubbly. Enjoy!

Note: I sometimes mix in broccoli and carrots as well for a change of pace. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Low-Carbing, Insulin Resistance, Hormones, etc.

Today, on Dand Carpender's blog, Hold the Toast, there was a very interesting post about PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) and the effects it has on glucose production by the liver and how it skews hormone production to make for more progesterone and less estrogen in post-menopausal women. It also definitely relates to why some people get to a certain point and can lose no more weight, even though they are very conscientious about counting carbs. Dana's experience is very interesting to read and it will be worth following her blog to see what happens with her treatment. Any, have a read- not complicated, but it may ring some bells with some of you.

Monday, February 7, 2011

How to Overcome Stalls in Weight Loss

I came across this brief article on how to overcome stalls in weight loss. It is very basic, but good advice! I actually didn't know the stuff about caffeine, so as of tomorrow, no more coffee and artificial sweeteners for a while. Won't hurt the blood pressure anyway. So take ten minutes and have a look.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Grandmother's Chicken Soup courtesy of Gabby

For as many cooks as there are, there are versions of chicken soup, it seems. This is my version adapted from the way my grandmother made it years ago. One of my fondest memories is coming into her kitchen to find the kitchen table covered with noodle dough for the soup and smelling the chicken simmering. I have made  a couple of changes to her version, the first being not putting the flour-based noodles in and adding more herbs and spices.

Try this on a day when you have some time. It's not short and easy like Carole's, but for me, it's well worth the effort when I have the time. I make a big pot of it when I do and freeze portions for later.

Gabby's Chicken Soup

5 chicken leg quarters

2 quarts homemade chicken stock (chicken broth will work fine or 1/2 chicken broth and 1/2 water with chicken bouillon)
more chicken broth or water and ground bouillon as needed (later in cooking)
chicken bouillon as needed for flavor at the end after tasting. I don't use it if using homemade stock.
at least 3 tablespoons soy or teriyaki sauce
2 tablespoons dry basil
1 tablespoon dry parsley
1 tablespoon dry cilantro
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder ( more if you like)
1 teaspoon onion powder
salt and pepper to taste- add this near the end of cooking time to make sure you don't over cook
Use your own judgment about amount of herbs and spices, according to your own taste.

Dreamfields rotini cooked separately from the soup. To be added when soup is done.


The types of veggies you can use in this soup are endless and your choice. These are just the ones I regularly use. Except for carrot, I generally use frozen veggies. If I happen to have fresh ones on hand, I use them, but I make it a point to always have a stock of frozen veggies.

2 scallions sliced thinly (green and white parts)
3 stalks celery sliced thinly
1 medium onion diced
1/2 cup of frozen green peas ( added near the end of cooking)
1 large or 2 medium carrots sliced or diced
1 cup or more of broccoli
1 cup or more of cauliflower
1 cup or more of snow pea pods sliced diagonally
1 large or 2 medium tomatoes diced into large dice

Wash the chicken leg quarters thoroughly. Do not remove skin yet. If you find it aesthetically unpleasing to leave the skin on, go ahead and remove it if you must. However, being on low carb, animal fat is an essential part of our diets, and there is a world of flavor in chicken fat, which is mostly found with the skin. Growing up around a Jewish grandmother, chicken fat was second only to gold in dollar value. LOL! In a large soup pot, add stock or broth, all herbs and spices, and Teriyaki sauce. Bring to a boil, turn down to simmer, and simmer till the chicken can be pulled from the bones easily. At this point remove the skin and let your dog or cat have a treat! When the chicken is cool enough to handle, pull the meat from the bones, cut into chunks or large dice and place back in the stock. At this point, add onion, celery, scallions and all other veggies except for the green pease. If the soup appears too thick, add broth in small increments till it is the way you want it. Gently simmer a few minutes more until the veggies are just done- not mushy. Add frozen green peas the last five minutes. Ladle into bowls and enjoy. I cook a little Dreamfields rotini separately and  add to my bowl when ready to eat so as not to cook the pasta in the soup, as per the Dreamfields label.

Makes two quarts or more, depending on how much you thin it at the end. If you are on Phase I, you can omit the peas and carrots. I never did ever and it has not slowed my weight loss, or if it did, not much. This is not something you make every day anyway.

Dreamfields Pasta Courtesy of Dana Carpender

For those of you who aren't on phase 1 and are really, really missing pasta, Dreamfields may be the answer for you. It has been for me. Having been the executive chef of a large Italian restaurant, pasta has been a mainstay for me for many years. I did totally give it up till I found Dreamfields. According to Dana Carpender's research on the pasta, it affects different people in different ways.

For me, it causes no carb craving, no sugar spike and no weight gain. That being said, I don't use it daily by any means- Maybe once a week, and cook it as directed on the package. So, have a look at Dana's take on it.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Easy Chicken Veggie Soup Courtesy of Carole

This is yet another version of chicken soup given by our dear OFL Carole, who, by the way, has reached her goal weight! This is the kind of thing to make when you are tired and don't want to cook ANYTHING! I now keep a couple cans of chicken meat for this purpose- never thought of using canned before.

My chicken soup is easy. I don't have lots of time so:
I use a can of white chicken, add 3 0r 4 cups water, 2 boullion cubes, green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, onion, and shredded cabbage. All vegies are frozen so taste great. Cook for 30 minutes or so and eat! This makes enough for a few meals- so good!

Melinda Mae Courtesy of Sharon- How to Succeed at Atkins!

Sharon, our dear OFL from Israel, contributed this on how to succeed at Akins. I think it's very apt. So many of us want this process to be instant. It isn't and it's a process of developing this as a way of life and forgetting the old. We do not GO on Atkins and go OFF. We stay on the low carb lifestyle for life- we will be happier, healthier and far better off for life!

Sorry, me again. I just thought I would post something someone sent me, which I think is a very good metaphor for how to succeed on Atkins -- the Shel Silverstein poem called "Melinda Mae" about eating the whale:

Have you heard of tiny Melinda Mae,
Who ate a monstrous whale?
She thought she could,
She said she would,
So she started in right at the tail.

And everyone said, "You're much too small,"
But that didn't bother Melinda at all,

She took little bites and she chewed very slow,
Just like a little girl should...

...and eighty-nine years later she ate that whale
Because she said she would!!!


Cauliflower Cous Cous Courtesy of Jan

For all your dear OFL's in search for variety, this is a good one, courtesy of Jan, our long and faithful OFL! I have always loved cous cous, because it is an incredibly simple and easy pasta to make. Well, as you know, we gave up pasta, not for lent, but for Atkins! It's delicious and a great variation for our WOE. You DO know that we have to keep the variety in our food to be successful, don't you?

Cauliflower couscous
Chef Ben Ford
• 2 tablespoon olive oil
• 2 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 2 teaspoon ground turmeric
• 1 large yellow onions, diced
• 3 garlic cloves, chopped
• 3 whole cauliflower, shaved (save stalks, they make a good soup)
• 2 sweet red peppers, roasted and diced
• 2 JalapeƱo pepper, roasted and diced
• 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
• 1 tablespoon mint, finely sliced
• 1 tablespoon basil, finely sliced
• 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
• 1 tablespoon butter to finish.
• Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
• * Regular cooked couscous can be substituted for the cauliflower
Shave the cauliflower florets with a knife. The smaller the better since it will help us avoid having to over work the cauliflower in the processor to get a consistent size that resembles couscous, the grain.
Heat the oil in a large skillet.
Add the spices and gently heat until the mustard seeds pop.
Add the onion and garlic and let them soften.
Add the cauliflower and diced peppers to the onion.
Cover and allow to steam until tender — 5 minutes or so.
Finish with butter, mint, basil, parsley, kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper

I might add here that when I tried this recipe, I didn't have all the ingredients available, but It worked fine, and I omitted the Jalapenos, because I was serving it to the folks, and Mama won't eat even a hint of the hot stuff. Anyone who says cauliflower is boring just hasn't tried this versatile vegetable. Also, I processed the cauliflower on a mandolin- much faster!

Ten Day Cole Slaw Courtesy of Sue

This is a new variation on cole slaw contributed by our ever faithful Sue. It's a nice change from those sweet creamy cole slaws. I tried this almost after she gave it to us on my folks, and even deep South Colonel liked it!

Ten Day Cabbage Slaw

1 head cabbage, shredded (or 16oz pkg slaw mix)
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 bunch green onion, chopped (or white or purple onion)
1 C sugar (Splenda)
1/2 C vinegar
1/2 C oil
1 tsp celery seed
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

It is a nice change from the creamy slaw

Chicken Veggie Soup Courtesy of Sue

This sounds like yet another wonderful variation of chicken soup, courtesy of Sue, another faithful dear OFL. She adapted this recipe from another and made it even better. Just the right thing for comfort on a cold day! Give it a try!

Chicken Vegetable Soup

6 cups water
7 tsp or 7 cubes chicken bullion
1 tsp parsley
l tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp oregano
2 C cabbage cut in strips
3/4 C chopped celery
2/3 C chopped mushroom
1/2 C chopped broccoli
1/2 C chopped string beans
1/3 C chopped white onion
1/3 C chopped zucchini
2 1/2 lbs chicken breast

- Chop all veggies
- Fill a small pot with water and get it to a rolling boil. Drop in the chicken breasts for five minutes, then remove, drain, and cool them. Cut into chunks.
- Fill large pot with 6 C water and stir in all your spices bringing the water to a boil. Dissolve the bullion.
- Reduce heat to medium and stir in all veggies EXCEPT for cabbage.
- Cover and simmer for 20 min.
- Add cabbage "noodles" and chicken.
- Cover and simmer for 15 more minutes.

For starters, hubby cooked chicken breasts with skin and bones. Makes for such a rich broth. He always seasons heartily including poultry seasoning. We removed the skin and bones and cut up the chicken, of course. We also used that same broth for the soup and not different water with bullion. I found the veggie amounts to be paltry at best. Guess we always make a bigger pot of soup. I probably tripled the amounts except for the onion. I also added a finely sliced carrot for added color. I used fresh veggies but I would think that frozen broccoli and green beans should be fine. I did find it to be very yummy...loved the cabbage.

Ten Day Cabbage Slaw

1 head cabbage, shredded (or 16oz pkg slaw mix)
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 bunch green onion, chopped (or white or purple onion)
1 C sugar (Splenda)
1/2 C vinegar
1/2 C oil
1 tsp celery seed
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

It is a nice change from the creamy slaw.

Rosemary Garlic Chicken Courtesy of Sharon

I have to admit, I haven't tried this recipe contributed by our dear OFL Sharon, but I will. Just have cooked a lot of chicken lately. It sounds delicious and Atkins friendly even for Phase I minus the potatoes. Thanks, Sharon!

Rosemary Garlic Chicken

6 chicken legs, divided
3 potatoes (for non-Atkins people; eggplant slices work too)
3 zucchini
2 onions
6 Roma tomatoes
1 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, coarsely chopped
4 cloves of garlic (at least; I used 6), crushed
1 small hot pepper, finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt (you can use more)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Take a small empty pan, fill it with water and put it in the bottom of the oven to make the air moist.

Line an oven pan with aluminum foil. Take 2 Tbsp olive oil from the measured cup and brush the aluminum foil with it. Put the rosemary, garlic, hot pepper and salt into the rest of the olive oil and let sit for at least 10 minutes.

While the spices sit in the oil, peel the potatoes and slice them about as thick as your index finger; cut the zucchini in half lengthwise and each half into 2-3 pieces; cut the onions into 4-6 wedges each; and cut the Roma tomatoes in half lengthwise.

Now cover the bottom of the pan with the potatoes. Pour about 1/4 of the olive oil mixture over them. Arrange the chicken pieces on top of the potatoes and pour about 1/4 of the olive oil mixture over them. Arrange the zucchini and onions in the spaces between the chicken pieces and pour about 1/4 of the olive oil mixture over them. Put 1/2 tomato, cut side down, on top of each chicken piece and pour the rest of the olive oil mixture over them.

Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake 1/2 hour at 400 degrees. Take off the foil and turn the oven down to 375 and cook until the top of the chicken is golden and the tomatoes are very wrinkled.

Stand back -- there will be a stampede.

Dreamy Chocolate Soda Courtesy of Jan2

Here's and incredibly simple and delicious treat contributed by Jan2. I tried it and thought I was having a chocolate soda at the old fashioned drug store! Tried it yesterday afternoon!

Discovered a wonderful treat I need to share as it has helped me a lot with that sweet craving. Put ice in a glass and add a small amount of heavy cream, a drizzle of sf choc syrup and fill glass with seltzer water, I swear I was having a chocolate soda,.....mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm....yummy...

Gabby's Slumgullion

Well, as anyone who follows this blog can see, I am behind on posting. Not to worry, I will get everyone's new recipes up sometime today hopefully. This is not a "real" recipe, but it is something I throw together that doesn't require a lot of pots and a lot of time. This recipe can be varied as you like.


1 pound or a little more of ground beef
1 medium red, white or yellow onion diced
8 ounces sliced mushroom ( canned will do when you don't have fresh)
1/2 medium green or red bell pepper diced
1 or more cloves of garlic minced (depends on how much garlic you like)
2 small zucchini squash sliced lengthwise and then sliced thin
1 14 1/2 to 16 ounce can diced tomatoes with juice ( I use the ones that come with basil, onions and garlic- no sugar added) or if you like, you can dice a couple of large fresh tomatoes instead.
1 1/2 teaspoons each of basil, oregano and parsley (dried)
1/2 teaspoon  ground cumin
Good sprinkling each of garlic and onion powder
1 teaspoon dried onion flakes ( optional)
at least one  tablespoon Teriyaki or Soy sauce
Worcestershire sauce if desired
Salt and Pepper to taste- taste for this after the whole mixture has cooked together, and then add as you like. I find no additional salt is needed, because of the saltiness of the sauces added.

In a saute pan, crumble the ground beef along with the diced onions and peppers, and minced garlic. Brown the mixture, being careful not to let the garlic burn. As it begins to cook, add all the spices and herbs, and saute a little longer. Then add zucchini, tomatoes and sauces. Stir all together and let simmer till the zucchini is the desired doneness. Throw all in an oven proof casserole dish, cover with grated cheese, and place under the broiler of the oven just until the cheese is melted and beginning to brown. This all takes about thirty minutes and is suitable for all phases. For me this makes about four servings.

Note: you can use other ground meats, add what veggies you want and vary amounts of herbs and spices to your taste. Sometimes I add a little chopped jalapeno that has been cleaned and deveined, if I'm more in the mood for something more spicy. My grandmother used to make this and named it "slumgullion," because almost anything but the kitchen sink could be tossed in. Veggies like carrots and green onions are good in this also. If you use carrots, cook them in the mixture a while before adding the zucchini.