This week’s recipe is something I threw together for the first time last week when my son came over and we were munching on pork rinds. We wanted something tasty and for some reason I was out of salsa, which never happens….except it did I guess.
Turns out this is an amazing recipe. I was shooting for a kind of Zucchini Hummus but I didn’t have any Tahini so I subbed in the sunflower seeds. I think it was a stroke of genius because I prefer the smoky flavor of the seeds over the tahini. In fact, I’ve made it several times since then trying to fine tune the recipe. Turns out, you almost can’t put too much salt in it. The more salt, the more awesome it tastes.
Also, last night I steamed up some broccoli and used this as a dip and ate the broccoli by hand. It was a great decision and I think I’m going to do it again with just raw veggies for lunch.
Today I get to share with you a recipe that has kind of become a staple around here for when one of us wants something very quick and easy to make but will satisfy a sweet craving, a keto chocolate muffin that takes all of about 2 minutes to make.
As long as I’ve been low carb, I’ve really learned how to get by without bread but sometimes you want something that is a little “bread-y” to totally make up a word and this works fantastic. In fact, sometimes I will leave the cocoa powder and sweetener out of it and turn it into a hamburger bun. Nothing wrong with eating a hamburger with a fork but sometimes you just want to pick a bad boy up with your hands and chomp down.
This recipe takes the shape of the bowl it’s cooked in so you can cook it in a ramekin container if you want it to look more like a muffin but I usually just throw it all in a cereal bowl and call it a day. This is also great for a quick breakfast as you are headed out the door as well.
I’ve always had a thing for stuffed pork chops. In fact I’ve always liked food with more food inside of it, I’m not really sure why but ever since I was kid I loved cream filling, or candy with juice in the center, or pigs in a blanket or anything else with food inside food. It’s weird, I know but that’s me. So when my Walmart put some inch thick pork chops on sale, I knew what I needed to do.
The key here is to cut a pocket in the chops that is as big as possible but doesn’t open up to the back or sides. You want it to be able to hold as much filling as possible without leaking out anywhere.
Making the stuffing is very easy. Put the diced onions and garlic in a pot with a little coconut oil and the seasoning and cook until soft. Then stir in the spinach until wilted, then transfer it all to a bowl and stir in some soft mozzarella. I cubed mine but you can shred yours, I just prefer those big chunks of cheese. I might be a cheeseaholic.
Stuff your pork chops with the mix and put them in a pan standing up. You might need to use toothpicks to prop them but if the chops are thick enough, they will usually stand up on their own. Bake on 350° for about 25 minutes until fully cooked.
I was talking with someone in the 28 Day Challenge group yesterday about how much I LOOOOOOVE avocados. If there is any excuse to include them in a meal, I figure out a way to do it. This is probably a little rebellion from the old days of being told to stay away from avocados, eggs, butter and everything else that is awesome and to eat only low fat crappy tasting food. Thanks for making me 400 lbs Doc!
Anyway, in the course of talking about avocados and how I eat them, I realized 2 things. #1 The person I was talking to didn’t know what guacamole was and #2 I had never posted my guacamole recipe on the blog which I thought was weird. I remember thinking I was going to do it about the same time I did my Fire Roasted Salsa recipe but I guess life got in the way.
This guacamole is what I make every time we have burgers as a big scoop of it on top of a tasty burger is both a taste treat and an easy way to add fat to my meal. Of course it also goes with virtually any Mexican dish or sometimes I’ll put it on top of some baked chicken breasts.
I fired up the grill yesterday for some hamburgers and wanted to try something a little different for the veggies. I had run across a video on YouTube for BBQ Eggplant that I thought was interesting but I had yellow squash instead of eggplant. I was a bit worried about that but it turned out awesome. It was simple to make and full of flavor. Here’s what you do.
Dice a half a onion and 2 cloves of garlic and place in bowl with 1 tsp of cumin, 1 tsp of chili powder and a half a cup of soy sauce. Stir it up and that will be your sauce
Then get 2 yellow squash and cut in half lengthwise. Then score the meat of the squash in a checkerboard pattern being careful not to cut all the way through to the skin on the backside. I did 3 long cuts along the length of the squash and smaller perpendicular cuts about a half an inch apart.
Then put in on the grill over direct eat, skin side down and let it cook for about 5 minutes with the lid down. Then use a brush to brush on the liquid from the BBQ sauce and let it roast for another 5 minutes. Then spoon on all the chunky bits from the sauce and let it roast again until it us soft, about 5-7 more minutes. Then serve it up! It was vary tasty and certainly gave us a different way to serve squash than our usual way of steaming it.
Just a note, if you have an aversion to soy for any reason, I bet you can get pretty close to the same taste with olive oil and kosher salt. I haven’t done that yet but I’m sure it would be fine.
As promised last week, I’m sharing my Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers recipe with you all this week. I wasn’t happy with the pictures I took last week so I decided to remake a batch and of course, I burnt the tops a bit. Oh well, they still tasted good. I got distracted because I was cooking these at the same time I cooked dinner, I really need to remember that I’m not the best multi-tasker in the world.
The first step is the most important because it will determine how hot the final product will be. Cut the tops off the peppers and cut in half lengthwise to make boats. Then remove seeds and de-vein the peppers. All the heat for the peppers is in those seeds so be sure to remove them if you don’t want them to be spicy. Of course if you DO want them spicy, just put a few seeds into the cream cheese mixture in the next step. The capsaicin in the seeds is supposed to have benefits for joint health and weight loss but I am in no way an expert. All I know is more seeds equals more heat. Now preheat your oven to 350°.
Next fry up 3 pieces of bacon to extra crispy and chop into small pieces. Then mix up an 8oz box of cream cheese with the bacon and a tsp of garlic salt until uniform. Then take a butter knife of spoon and spread the mix into the pepper boats. I sprinkle a little almond meal on top to give it something a little crunchy but my son said it made it taste like I mixed peanut butter into the cream cheese so your mileage may vary.
Put those tasty peppers in the oven on 350° for 20 minutes then turn the broiler on for about 3 minutes to brown the top a bit. DO NOT turn the broiler on and get distracted by playing with the most beautiful grand-daughter in the entire world or you will end up burning the tops. They still taste great but not the most aesthetically pleasing look in the world.
I hope you enjoy this recipe. If you decide to make it, take @MySugarFreeJrny on Instagram so I can see!
One of my favorite things to do now is to throw a rack of ribs covered in my Cocoa Chili Powder rub on my little gas grill in the backyard. This rub is easy to put together and tastes awesome. Something about the cocoa powder and chili powder mixing together makes the pork ribs taste amazing and goes well with the steamed veggies I usually serve it with.
I always looking for ways to fresh veggies on my family’s plates in new and tasty ways. This Cucumber Dill Salad is incredibly flavorful and doesn’t use any mayo (which normally has sugar in it) or any kind of sugar or other sweeteners. Just simple ingredients that can be prepared in about 10 minutes to make a wonderful side dish for any meal.
I absolutely love okra. I grew up eating it in gumbo, my dad always had a jar of pickled okra in the fridge, fried okra always went with the fried chicken and a can of okra and tomatoes was a common side dish.
So I thought I’d try my hand at an okra and tomatoes recipe and was so happy with how it turned out. I used fresh okra but if you can only find frozen, that should work also just don’t get the breaded kind. Also beware of over-cooking, my first batch was allowed to simmer overnight and was almost completely liquid. Also beware of the tomato sauce because sometimes they like to add a little sugar to the recipe. Just check the recipes and make sure it’s just tomatoes and possibly salt.
As part of our commitment to eating healthy, Dian and I joined a produce co-op. This has opened me up to several veggies that are outside of my “normal vegetable rotation”. For instance, the only time I have ever bought cabbage in my life was when Dian wanted Cole Slaw for her hot dogs. As a true Texan, I know that Cole Slaw on hot dogs is a Yankee abomination and only gets in the way of the chili and cheese.
So now I had a head of cabbage that I really didn’t know what to do with. (I know, I’m stumped by the stupidest things. I also got a package of figs that will probably rot before I get to them.) After a little experimentation, I found a way to use my cabbage that was absolutely delicious and complemented the grilled chicken I paired it with.
This recipe is made for 2 people people but it is very easy to double or quadruple for more people. I hope you enjoy it!