Tuesday, October 28, 2014

My now favorite zero carb chicken salad

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I want to leave a disclaimer right away - if you decide to nitpick this recipe, then there are, probably, about 2-5 g of carbs in it (in tomatoes or olives, for example). But since most of the nutritionists consider all of the additions in the salad "free items", I prefer to think of it as a zero-carb option :)

I mentioned before that I've been struggling with a gestational diabetes diet, so I'm always on the lookout for something to fill in my tummy without the guilt trip afterwards. This salad was inspired by a local restaurant. Unfortunately, it was recently discontinued but since it's so easy to make at home, that's not much of a loss. It's filling and can be served as a separate meal with a side of brownie (right...)

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CHICKEN CHOPPED SALAD

You will need (for 1 serving):

2-3 leaves of romaine salad or red leaf for a little extra nutrition (as much as you want really)
1/2 cup chopped, cooked chicken
1 boiled egg
1 roma tomato
1 cooked slice of bacon (I cheated and used real bacon bits, about 1TB. Or more because everybody likes bacon :)
1/3 cup olives, sliced
1-2 TB ranch dressing (homemade or store-bought, can add more to taste)

How-to:

Chop the tomato. I actually added some halved cherry tomatoes from the last of our crop this year instead. Slice an egg.  Toss all the ingredients together, add dressing and enjoy immediately. The original recipe also asks for some croutons to top it with but since I'm trying to keep it as close to a zero carb version as possible, I omitted them. It's still delicious, and did I mention almost no carbs???
 

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

I'm still here :)

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I know it's been a while...  You can't even imagine how many times I came here to write a post only to close the screen a few seconds later. It's not that I have nothing to write about. In fact, I've been creating "blogging schedules" for weeks now. But it seems like my world revolves around this pregnancy and nothing else is as important right now. I have a TON of doctors' appointments, every week is a new surprise or struggle. Nothing bad or serious but by the time I get home, I can barely drag my feet... I'm always always tired. I get fake contractions (Braxton hicks) every single day and some of them feel almost like the real deal when I can hardly catch my breath. We also had a small scare about two weeks ago but, thank goodness, everything was fine eventually and I'm back to normal...

I'm sorry if you are sick and tired of me talking about the babies... But this is my reality, take it or leave it, lol :)

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Yep, 32 weeks with twins, measuring 41 (if I had only one there... what's 41 weeks in pregnancy even??) Keeping fingers crossed for at least 4 to 6 more healthy weeks...

OK, enough about me... HOW HAVE YOU BEEN????


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The last of the crop and quick veggie freezer pockets.

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We've been having an unusually warm week for almost mid October. It was 78 degrees today! After a very wet September and a pretty cold first week of this month, it's an unexpected and pleasant surprise!

I've been picking the last few offerings of the summer crop. I didn't spend nearly enough time in the garden this year but we were still blessed with an abundance. That's what we got last week:

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Look at this Japanese cucumber!! It's bigger than the zucchinis! Good thing, everybody in our family loves the cukes :)

And since it was 39F last week, I also picked all of the rest of the green tomatoes (some of them cracked from all the September moisture):

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As you can see, many of them have already turned red. I do it every year before the frost and let them slowly turn red at home. Last fall we had enough homegrown tomatoes to last us until mid-December. Won't happen this year but we should have enough for the next couple of weeks. And they taste so much better than the store-bought.

And since I'm on a freezing gig right now, I thought I would share with you something that my Grandma taught me to make many-many moons ago - quick veggie freezer pockets. I still remember her chopping their garden veggies in front of the open window every September...

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I used peppers and tomatoes from our garden. I like to use roma tomatoes because they are a little more meaty. I just chop everything but carrots. I like them grated better. Or, and I forgot to add an onion to the picture but, of course, I also chop about a half or a whole onion to the mix:

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Then mix together and separate into 1 cup each. I like to wrap each cup into plastic wrap before putting it in the freezer for easy usage. These pockets can be added to soups, crock pot meals, when you make pasta sauce and in many other meals. So easy and practical! Don't even need to be defrosted. Just unwrap and use. They will last for a couple of months in the freezer.

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Exactly!

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Let's face it: English is a crazy language.
There is no EGG in EGGPLANT nor HAM in HAMBURGER; neither APPLE nor PINE in PINEAPPLE. ENGLISH MUFFINS weren't invented in ENGLAND. QUICKSAND can work SLOWLY. BOXING RINGS are SQUARE, and a GUINEA PIG is neither a GUINEA nor is it a PIG.
And why is it that WRITER'S WRITE but FINGERS DON'T FING, GROCERS don't GROCE and HAMMERS don't HAM? Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make AMENDS but not one AMEND? If TEACHERS TAUGHT, why don't PREACHERS PRAUGHT? If a VEGETARIAN eats VEGETABLES, what does a HUMANITARIAN eat?
In what other language do people RECITE at a PLAY and PLAY at a RECITAL? We SHIP BY TRUCK but SEND CARGO BY SHIP. We have NOSES that RUN and FEET that SMELL. We PARK in a DRIVEWAY and DRIVE in a PARKWAY. And how can a SLIM CHANCE and a FAT CHANCE be the same, while a WISE MAN and a WISE GUY are opposites?
You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your HOUSE can BURN UP as it BURNS DOWN, in which you FILL IN a form by FILLING IT OUT, and in which an ALARM goes OFF by going ON. And, in closing, if Father is POP, how come Mother isn't MOP?

I didn't write that but I just had to share :) And there are days when I feel like a mop, unfortunately... Especially when I look like Sideshow Bob :)

Monday, October 6, 2014

Food waste and a menu, week 10/6-10/12

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Hello, hello, my lovelies,

I hope you all had a quiet Monday. Wishful thinking, huh? :) Well, my Monday was surprisingly normal. I know I'm going to jinx myself now and have a crazy day tomorrow... I was busy with work, laundry, cleaning, organizing, the usual stuff. And I actually had the energy to do it all. Love the days like this!

This week in the kitchen we are trying really hard to catch up on leftovers. I have a myriad of small containers, cans and jars in our fridge. Guess what we are eating for most of our lunches here? We are usually so good with eating leftovers but now that I have to count every carb, I kind of let it slide. I'll be trying really hard to incorporate all kinds of leftovers into different meals over the course of this week.

But before that, here's our food waste for last week:

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A pepper and some chicken. I found the pepper in the produce drawer and it looked nothing like this on the other side. Unfortunately, it was all rotten on the inside too. And the chicken was totally supposed to be used up (I wanted to make some of these over the weekend. Don't they sound delicious??). I tried it Saturday morning and it was still fine but by Sunday afternoon at was already smelly... Blah... Chicken is too expensive to let it go to waste...

And this week we are eating (not necessarily in this order):

Mon. - teriyaki pork chops (scroll down for the recipe - I froze some and made some, and they were delish!), jasmine rice, peas, cheesy cauliflower
Tues. - fritatta (nice way to incorporate bits and pieces from the fridge :), green salad
Wed. - spaghetti with meat sauce, steamed broccoli
Thurs. - homemade pizza, salad
Fr. - chicken noodle soup with all kinds of veggies in it
Sat.- leftovers - cause we'll have more by then :)
Sun. - TBD

And what's cooking in your kitchen this week?


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