Why You Should Taste Test Your Recipes

Do you always taste your cooking? Of course you do, and you should! Especially, if you are sharing said recipes for the public to try! Always taste test your recipes!!

This morning I tried a recipe for “Best Low Carb Chocolate Cookies” that were anything but! Now, in all fairness, we could have used different products, I slightly altered the recipe, and maybe she didn’t taste the end product to make sure they were palatable.

My results-looked better than they tasted

I did taste them however, and they were horrible! Even frosted, or iced, I don’t think these cookies were salvageable. I felt like it was an expensive waste of precious ingredients and I have to wonder if she even bothered to taste them herself.

Another admission is that this was my first time to try Swerve sweetener, I always use Pyure brand stevia for my baking. The internet is full of great recipes using Swerve, so I thought it must be all the rage. Maybe the amount called for just was too little.

The result was like eating chocolate flavored sand.

I found the recipe on Pinterest by Ditch the Carbs and from the get go, I thought 2 cups of almond flour would be excessive, so I only used one cup. I had read the reviews and many people were complaining they were too dry.

The results were skewed because the recommended time for cooking was too long, and the first 7 cookies burned, I tasted them anyway and they tasted like a dry popcorn fart.

The dough was plentiful, so I added 1/2 cup of coconut flour, mixed it in very well and cooked 7 more. (I also added a few Lilies chocolate chips to add some sweetness because they were so bitter.) The result? Like eating chocolate flavored sand!

So, at this point, I had dough with 1C almond flour and 1/2C coconut flour, still not the recommended 2C almond flour!

To the last bit of dough left I added 1 T more butter and there was no improvement at all. Dry, bitter, tasteless. I was so bummed. I kept them thinking that maybe I could use them as a crumbly topping for Keto pudding or ice cream. Ten it wouldn’t be a total loss.

Please, people, taste your recipes!! All I’m saying is, had I made them with the originally called for 2 Cups of almond flour, they would have been even drier!! I will go back to the drawing board with these, once I get over wasting so many expensive ingredients.

Check out the recipe for yourself, and let me know how they worked out for you. One other note here: I used Hershey’s unsweetened cocoa, Kerrygold butter, and Swerve granulated sweetener.

Next time I might try with the 2 cups of almond flour but add an extra egg, or some nut butter (or both), and definitely more sweetener! I’ll keep you posted! For the original recipe, click on the link here.

Keto Baked Chicken Thighs-Two Ways

This morning I’m going to show you how I’ve made Keto chicken thighs two ways, for two days in a row now. I may or may not have wanted to show off my cooking skills to my brother who is staying with us for a few days. 😉

First day was Monday, I found a recipe from KetoGasm for “fried” chicken that’s really baked! It was so easy and turned out delicious!

My version of baked “fried” chicken

The breading is crushed and spiced pork rinds, yet the result tastes just like regular fried chicken (for those of you who may be thinking, ewww!) I happen to like pork rinds, yet I still didn’t think the breading tasted like them.

I already had some pork rinds in a gallon ziplock bag, so I just added the spices and threw all of it in my food processer and returned it to the bag. In a shallow bowl I mixed up the egg, mayo, and spicy mustard-this made up the wet ingredients.

I rinsed each piece of chicken, dipped it in the egg mixture and dropped it in the bag of crushed rinds. then I laid them on a rack over a large baking sheet.

In hindsight, I should have put parchment paper on the baking sheet, would have made clean-up so much easier.

You could also use a mixture of almond flour and pork rinds if you like.

My result wasn’t as pretty as hers, yet the taste was wonderful, the meat was juicy, and it was nice to have that crunch I’ve been missing for a long time.

Then yesterday, I cooked the remaining chicken thighs in the oven following a different recipe, one I got from WholesomeYum for crispy baked chicken thighs.

This time I brined the thighs first, in a bowl of warm, salted water for around 10 minutes. Next I brushed them with melted ghee, spiced them with salt, pepper, and Slap Ya Mama spice mix (lightly) and put them in a 450 degree oven for about 25 minutes.

My version of baked, crispy chicken thighs

The result was juicy, delicious, and had a slight kick which paired well with salad and seasoned broccoli. Brining and basting the chicken with ghee really adds a lot of flavor, plus your much-needed good fat.

Had just been my husband and I eating for the week, all of this chicken would’ve lasted us the whole week-which makes for easy put together meals each night, however it won’t stretch as far with three of us eating every night.

When my brother got here, he ate chicken, salad, finished off the broccoli, and ate the Zucchini with Mozzerella I had made earlier. He agreed everything was tasty.

Click the links for the recipes to get the ingredients and all of the nutrition information. I have not been tracking my macros as much lately, since I have a good idea what to eat every meal. As long as I don’t cheat, I stay pretty much on track.

Dessert was what I’m calling Keto Crack Pudding lol, because it’s so addicting!! It is also so easy and comes together in ten minutes! It’s really meant to be a fat bomb replacement and is simply any sugar free pudding mixed with 1C of heavy whipping cream, 1C of water, and 1 8oz pkg. of softened cream cheese. A little goes a long way, I usually eat two TBS in a small bowl and I’m satisfied. 🙂

On a personal note, I started my knee therapy yesterday and really thought I would be working hard. What happened was 5 minutes of adjustments to my back, followed by some intense vibrating of my knee to break up scar tissue.

I thought, “That’s it? I got off easy today!” The idea is to break up the scar tissue and get better blood flow through the knee to allow the stem cells to start working.

I go back Thursday and we’ll see what’s in store for me then. 🙂

I hope y’all try these recipes, they make for an easy keto dinner when paired with a non-starchy vegetable and a salad. Let me know what you think, or if you have questions. Happy hump day!

 

Why I Joined The Keto Challenge

Join the challenge here!

Hey guys, guess what starts today? The 60-day Keto Challenge, put on by Martina Slajerova from Keto Diet. You all should get in on this because not only is it a good way to jump start your weight loss plan, you could also win some awesome prizes!

The prizes include her brand new cookbook and an iPhone 8!

I joined for many reasons:

a) get back to tracking my food, making it easier to stay in ketosis, therefore dropping those last stubborn pounds (gotta get bathing suit ready)😉😊

b) possibly cure or at least maintain my PKD

c) free tools and recipes/meal plans

d) the chance to win prizes!

e) accountability with exercising

(Just click on the link provided above or the image at the beginning of this post for all the rules and regulations, helpful links, and details concerning prizes.)

You will be asked to provide a before pic but you can take one in your bathing suit, shorts and a tank top or whatever you have that you don’t mind sharing with the public. At the end of the challenge, you will take a pic in the same outfit to show your results! Good luck!

 

*Just so you know, I am not affiliated in any way with Keto Diet, just trying to help out whomever might like the chance to get healthy, lose weight, and/or win a prize!

Welcome To Keto For Beginners-Yes I Changed Again!

Why I Changed My Name Again

Good morning everyone! You probably think I have gone off my rocker having changed my name again over the weekend, but I had an epiphany!!

I needed to let go off the patio concept and get to the heart of my purpose here, which is to help those looking trying to get started on the Keto diet, provide answers to questions, and share what has been working for me.

What Is Keto And Why I Went From Paleo To Keto

When I was Kimmy’s Patio for the last couple of years, I focused on the Paleo diet, my use of essential oils, and my passion for all things alternative health. I want to get away from the use of pharmaceuticals as much as I can, so nothing much has changed except the way I’m eating.

I had started cheating over the summer and had gained a few pounds, started feeling sluggish and tired again and knew I needed to get back on track. That is when I heard about Keto and began to incorporate that way of eating into my life. I dropped 5lbs the first week and had my old energy back! I knew then I was on the right path.

It might have been easier for me to convert since my body was already used to no bread, pasta, or sugar. All I really did was cut out the carbs I was allowed on Paleo, like sweet potatoes and starchy fruits (bananas), and add in dairy, like cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and heavy whipping cream. The hardest part of this way of eating is figuring out your macros and planning meals accordingly.

What Works Is Writing It Down

You have to keep track somehow of what you eat every day. There are apps for that, I’m still experimenting to see which one works best. I made a simple chart to follow that shows what foods I eat the most and their macros. (Short for macronutrients, all you need to follow is carbs, fat, and protein.) What I really need is a spreadsheet, I may get my hubby to help me make one. My list needs revisions already!

Luckily, I’m a writer, so I’m used to writing things down. Now, I’ve come to depend heavily on Pinterest for recipes, meal plans and general articles and info guiding me along this journey.

What I want to do with this here blog is help others like me who are just starting out, to learn the ropes, so to say. I don’t know it all by any stretch, but I would love for you to join me as I figure all of this new way of living out.

It’s Not Really A Diet

That’s the thing, like I used to say when I was Paleo, “It’s not a diet, it’s a healthy lifestyle, a new approach to eating.”

As I discover what works best, I will share information, recipes, tips and tricks, products and services, just like I did on the patio, but I hope I do a better job of it here at Keto For Beginners.

There are a ton of sites out there doing the same kind of thing, but they don’t know you like I do. You are my tribe, my people, and I have your trust (I hope) by now. I will try my best not to steer you wrong. (Did you get that? Steer, I’m from Texas and all…never mind, lol.)

Longhorn Steer

I’ve already started by sharing some breakfast ideas here, and now I want to show you how to figure out your own macros, how to plan meals, and what to eat each meal, healthy snack ideas and more. Let’s start today with how to figure your macros.

I used this handy Keto calculator at Ruled Me. Their prediction for me was slightly different than the one I have set, but not enough to throw everything off. I just realized by trial and error, I need more than what they determined for my daily calorie allowance, otherwise, I’m not eating enough.

My macros break down something like this: Calories per day-1500, fat grams per day-117g, 25g carbs, and 92g of protein. This is just a basic model to follow, I’ve realized that all of this isn’t an exact science, I just try to come close to that every day.

Yours will be different as determined by the calculator. What you’ll do is enter your sex, age, height, weight, and exercise level. They also ask your body fat and how to figure that out. It is a rough estimate based on your weight and exercise level.

Once you figure out your macros, you have a starting place to plan your meals and snacks from. It is a little tricky at first but soon you get the hang of it.

You want to get your carbs from veggies and nuts/seeds, a moderate amount of protein to maintain muscle but not kick you out of ketosis. Get plenty of good fats from avocadoes, coconut oil, grass-fed butter or ghee, olive oil, nut butters, fatty meats, and dairy.

Meal Examples

A typical day of meal planning goes something like this for me:

Breakfast: 1 egg, 1 piece of bacon or several slices of salami, 1/4 avocado, and a cheese stick or baby Bel. -or- A smoothie using coconut/almond milk, strawberries or blueberries, avocado, lemon juice, Stevia, and ice. -or- A Keto porridge like this one Hemp Heart Porridge.

Lunch: Whatever leftover meat and salad we had from the night before. -or- Salad with chicken, tomato, cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower, black olives, shredded cheese, ranch or Italian dressing (1tbsp)

Dinner: Meat choice, salad, vegetable. Most nights we have a piece of meat Dave has grilled, a salad, and some fresh vegetable like Brussel sprouts, asparagus, green beans or similar.

Snacks: Fat bombs, or pork skins, or cheese and nuts.

These are just examples, but you get the idea. What are your questions, suggestions, comments? Just let me know and I will get you an answer.

We can do this together people, we all need to get healthy and get that old devil sugar out of our life. (Most of the time, anyway) Cutting out the carbs and ramping up your daily intake of good fats will have you melting off the pounds and improving your cholesterol numbers in no time!

Join me, won’t you? Glad to have you here!

 

Update: Here’s a great post that came in my email today, right after I published this post! I told him I would share it with you all.

016: Working Out Like Our Ancestors and Going From Paleo to Keto – Mark Sisson

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Fat Bombs Help To Keep You Thin

I know, I know…I didn’t wait for your responses, but to be fair, no one had one about my name change except for my son’s girlfriend who didn’t see my blog before I did the name change. She liked it and so do I…for now, I will leave it and see what happens.

So today I thought I would post a picture and a recipe of one of the easy fat bombs I’ve been making and then tell you about one of those “happy accidents” that happen when you tweak a recipe and it comes out waaay better than you imagined.

These I got off of Pinterest from Living Well Mom and even they were tweaked a little since I used cashew butter instead of almond butter. I halved her recipe and made half like this with my cute silicone heart molds and the remainder of the “batter” I added heavy cream and pecans to and OMG! They came out tasting like creamy, delicious, pudding pops and I had to stop myself from overeating them! Mine also have a little bit of Pyure brand stevia in them, a totally all-natural sweetener.

Not beautiful but oh-so-delicious, melt-in-your-mouth goodness!

The plus to eating fat bombs on a Keto or Paleo diet plan is that they actually help you BURN fat, curb sugar cravings (wha?), and boost your metabolism so why not enjoy one or two a day? The science behind it has to do with coconut oil having MCFA’s (medium chain fatty acids) which are very effective at obliterating fat. Also, they support your immune system due to the lauric acid in the coconut oil (wonderous stuff, no wonder I eat it by the tub!) And since you need your macros to be at least 50% of your daily intake to be from good fats, these little gems help you fill the bill!

So for me, eating such a restrictive diet makes these a treat I look forward to, heck, I may have one after breakfast and one after supper, as long as I get that fat in somewhere during the day. It is so hard reversing my thinking to eating more fat than anything else, after a couple of years eating more plant-based, higher protein diet. Yet, the scale shows it is working! Five pounds lost my first week!

These are so easy to make too, just click on the Pinterest link above and it will take you to the recipe on Erika’s site. Thanks to recipes like hers, I am sure I can continue to eat this way for a few more weeks. I just wish the weather would warm up so I could start walking. I’m doing all the exercises the doctor and PT gave me, yet I don’t feel like they are enough. I have been making trips to the store, just to get some extra movement in my day on top of the exercises and housework I do on a regular basis. 😉

Do try these easy fat bombs, play around with the recipe and let me know what you think! Use any kind of nut butter you can tolerate, add nuts (or don’t), slip in an essential oil (like peppermint) or an extract, in other words, go crazy! I want to hear what you made and how they turned out. Post pictures and leave comments.

For more wonderful information on how to benefit from a Keto diet, read this great book I’m currently reading called Keto Adapted by Maria Emmerich. It is so far a fantastic read. In addition, it was free and she includes recipes at the end of the book. If any of you want a copy, I can email you one-I am reading it on my iPad in the iBooks section.