Sunday, October 17, 2010

All Kinds of Ugly Green Beans

I know these are anything but attractive, but you will just have to trust me when I say they are delicious. Erik and Tanner don't even miss french fries anymore when we make hamburgers and Erik even bought more green beans last week and requested that I make more.

These make a great low carb snack or a great accompaniment to any meal you might normally have fries with.

There are a couple of ways you can bake these...longer time at a lower temp (which I've heard yields better results if you are wanting them a bit crispy) or at a higher temp for a shorter amount of time. I've only done the latter so far and the result is a kind of chewy texture. I'm going to give the other method a try to see how they taste crispy. I'll include instructions for both methods.


-1 lb green beans (many swear by frozen, but so far, I've used fresh) Canned green beans have too much moisture so don't try them.
-1 to 2 tblsp EVOO
-sea salt
-Tony Cachere's Original Creole Seasoning (this is optional, but it gives them a slight kick that I love!)


1. If you are using fresh green beans, snap off the ends and throw in a ziplock baggie. When you are done preparing the beans, pour 1-2 tblsp into the baggie and close and then mix up the beans until they are completely coated with the oil. If you are using frozen, just snip off the top of the bag and pour 1-2 tblsp of EVOO into the bag and mix until coated.

2. Pour onto a shallow metal cookie sheet or baking pan and sprinkle with kosher salt and cachere's seasoning. The Cachere's seasoning has salt in it so be mindful of this.

3. CRISPY BAKING INSTRUCTIONS: If you want to try the crispy method, bake at 275º for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours until the beans are turning dark and crispy but not burnt. After about half an hour, flip using a spatula and sprinkle with cachere's seasoning and a bit more salt. You can continue to flip every 30 minutes, but I wouldn't season them more than twice. You may need to keep a close eye on them towards the end as they can go from crisp and tasty to charcoal quickly.

FASTER BAKING INSTRUCTIONS: I put the oven at 400. After about 30 minutes I use a spatula to flip them and then sprinkle the other side with Cachere's and a bit of sea salt. Bake for another 20 and flip again until they start to brown. I had a few come out crispy using this method so if you cook them long enough, they might crisp up for you however, I've been told the slower method is great for crisping up the outside and leaving the inside kind of soft and sweet (almost like a fried onion).

4. Store leftovers in the refrigerator in a baggie and microwave for a minute or so to crisp back up.

Number of Servings: 6

Get complete nutritional information for this here

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Chili Relleno Casserole with Mock Mexican Rice

Easy, Yummy and low carb. If you want to reduce the carb count, reduce the amount of chili's you use by half. I've made it both ways and it tastes fine either way.

Ingredients for Chili Relleno Casserole:

1 onion chopped
evoo 1 tblsp
1/2 lb ground turkey
1/2 lb ground beef
4 (7 ounce) cans whole green chile peppers, drained
8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
8 ounces Longhorn or Cheddar cheese, shredded
4 eggs, beaten
1 (5 ounce) can evaporated milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 (14 ounce) can enchilada sauce
2-4 cloves of garlic minced
salt and pepper to taste

Directions for Chili Relleno Casserole:

. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Heat a pan with your tblsp of EVOO and add your chopped onion. Cook until just beginning to brown a bit (the browning will add flavor but you don't want your onion ALL browned.
3. Add your meat and brown meat. Add your garlic and cook a minute or so longer and set aside.
4. Get your pan and lay 12 oz of the chilies across the bottom of the pan. (make sure to spray it with a nonstick spray first). Add half your meat/onion mixture, sprinkle with half of the Jack and Cheddar cheeses, and cover with remaining chilies. Repeat with meat and cheese.
5. In a bowl, mix together the eggs, milk, and flour, and pour over the top of the chilies.
6. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, pour enchilada sauce evenly over the top, and continue baking another 15 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining Jack and Cheddar cheeses and broil for a few minutes (if desired, you can also just add the cheese without broiling), and serve.

Number of Servings: 12

Complete Nutritional Information for this recipe can be found here

Ingredients for Mock Mexican Rice:

-1/2 head medium cauliflower
-one large onion chopped
-half red bell pepper, chopped
-half yellow or orange bell pepper, chopped
-2 tblsp minced garlic (we like garlic, but you can reduce this if you don't)
-1 14 oz can stewed tomatoes mexican recipe
-1 tblsp EVOO
-2 tblsp Fiesta Spanish Rice Seasoning

Directions for Mock Mexican Rice:

. Using the largest set of holes on your grater, grate the cauliflower and set aside.
2. Heat EVOO in pan on med high heat and add onions and bell peppers. When they are softened and browned slightly, add the garlic and stir allowing to cook another minute or so.
3. Add the cauliflower and stir to coat with mixture in the pan.
4. Add tomatoes and some of the liquid. I crush the tomatoes in my hand as I add them to the pan rather than try to chop them up (much faster). add just enough liquid to moisten the mixture and help the cauliflower cook. You don't want to water it down too much.
5. Stir in the spanish rice seasoning and cook until cauliflower is soft, but still somewhat firm as you don't want it to turn to mush.

Number of Servings: 8

Full Nutritional Information for this recipe can be found here

NOTE: one serving of the casserole actually lasts about three meals for me so if you've had any kind of bariatric surgery, you will want to figure your nutritional info based on how much of the one serving you ate. When I add a dollop of the mexican "rice" I could only eat about a third of one serving of the casserole.

Asian Salmon with Cauliflower Fried Rice

Found a better picture, but that is obviously Tanner's portion. I think it looks like a much bigger portion because I used a smaller plate to trick him into thinking he was getting a larger portion lol.

I found this amazing blog and this was the first recipe I tried. I definitely recommend visiting her blog on a regular basis for more delicious recipes like the one below;

Has a bit of sugar so can be a bit carby, but still a tasty option.

Ingredients for Asian Salmon:

-Atlantic Salmon 6 oz
-2 tbsp soy sauce
-2 tbsp sesame oil
-2 garlic cloves minced
-1.5 inch piece of ginger (grated)
-1 tbsp brown sugar (can use splenda brown sugar blend or half brown sugar and half splenda which is the same thing)

Directions for Asian Salmon:

1. Put all in a bowl and mix together.
2. Put salmon in a baking dish and pour marinade over the salmon. Cover with saran wrap and put in the fridge. Marinate 1-4 hours.
3. When you are ready to cook it, heat a pan to medium high heat. No need to add oil because there is oil in the marinade.
4. Put salmon in top down (you can remove the skin if you prefer) and cook for about 6-8 minutes on each side.
5. top with chopped green onions and sesame seeds to make it purdy.

Number of Servings: 2 (for me, it was more like 4 with the rice)

Complete Nutritional Information for this recipe here

The mock fried rice is SO good, I dare you to make it for your family and see if they notice it isn't fried rice. Erik was skeptical and I had to practically FORCE him to add some to his plate, but he called me from work to tell me how AWESOME he thought it was!! I want to try and adapt this a bit more to make with less oil. If I come up with a better adaptation I'll tweak the recipe here.

Ingredients for Mock Fried Rice:

Cauliflower medium head
6 tblsp oil
3 tbsp sesame oil
3 cups fresh bean sprouts
4.5 tbsp soy sauce
9 stems of green onions
3 egg
1 pack of simply asia fried rice seasoning (use 2 tsp or just a pinch if you are cutting in half)

Directions for Mock Fried Rice:

1. Shred the cauliflower using the biggest holes on a grater. Put aside.
2. Heat a large skillet on medium high heat. Add oil and garlic and sauté for a minute or two (don’t let it burn).
3. Add cauliflower, soy sauce, sesame oil and bean sprouts. Saute in pan for about 5 minutes. Mix well to make sure cauliflower gets covered in sauce.
4. Push the cauliflower to one side of the pan and crack the egg. Scramble it. When egg is cooked, add it to the rest of the cauliflower mixture.
5. Add a pinch of the fried rice seasoning and taste it. A little goes a long way so be careful.
6. Add green onions and mix everything in the pan for a few more minutes and serve.

NOTE: as noted on the website, this may not keep well so you may want to make just enough for your meal.

Number of Servings: 6

Full Nutritional Information on this Recipe can be found here