Broccoli, Cheese and Bacon Soup

I am starting my week of soups with a creamy broccoli, cheese and bacon soup. Packed with healthy fresh vegetables and coconut milk makes a perfect soup to take to work for your lunch or to serve as a starter for supper. A bowl of broccoli, cheese and bacon soup is only 9 net carbs per portion.

Today I made Fat Head Pizza Dough rolls as an accompaniment to this creamy soup. Each portion is only 2 net carbs per portion. Recipe from https://howtothisandthat.com/keto-fathead-rolls/

My recipe makes enough soup for four portions. A perfect amount to see you through the week for lunch. Keep in the fridge and heat as required; put in a thermos flask and it will keep warm until lunch time. A easy and nutritious lunch.

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Meatballs with Homemade Tomato and Basil Sauce

Today I made  meatballs in a rich tomato and basil sauce. I made the meatballs from minced beef, however they would be equally delicious using minced pork or minced lamb. Net carbs in recipe below 9 g per portion.

The meatballs are very quick to make but it is important to chill them before cooking to prevent them falling apart when you cook them, so allow time for this. They will freeze well so a good choice for preparing in advance.

I do not bother frying the meatballs, as they cook equally as well in the oven and as you are going to put them into the tomato sauce before serving you do not really need them browned; however if you want to serve them plain and therefore require a little colour, then I would suggest you still cook them in the oven first and then brown the outside for appearance purposes once cooked.

The tomato and basil sauce is a normal classic tomato sauce with basil herb added. When you chop the basil, do not over-chop as it is a delicate little herb and flavours will reduce if it is over worked. I use Pasatta as I prefer my sauce to be smooth, but you could also use tinned chopped tomatoes. Two tins would make a similar amount to the recipe below.

Today I served them with low carb spaghetti, however they are also delightful accompanied by courgette noodles. Find my recipe here.

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Celeriac Dauphinois

Who doesn’t like Dauphinois Potatoes right? All that creamy, cheesy, garlic flavour mixed with sliced potatoes, wow a marriage of heavenly ingredients.

Well now you have a low carb version. 4 net carbs per portion. A chef I used to work with served these for my dinner one day accompanying a braised piece of beef and seasonal vegetables. Well I could not believe how good it tasted.

Celeriac really has become one of my favourite vegetables and I mostly prepare it as I would potatoes; roasted, mashed, chipped or baked. It is a  seasonal vegetable in the UK so you cannot readily find it during the summer months and if you do it is likely to be expensive, so I make good use of it during the winter months. Equally I found the Dauphinois freezes exceptionally well, although there is not normally enough left to freeze!

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Fisherman’s Pie

Who can resist a creamy Fisherman’s Pie? In this blog I am going to share with you my low-carb version of a traditional British Fisherman’s Pie. Coming in at only 6 net g carbs per portion.

Traditionally the top crust layer would be mashed potato but for this version I am going to use Celeriac. You will be pleasantly surprised how much the nutty flavour of the celeriac compliments the fish flavours. In a Fisherman’s Pie it is preferable to use fish with bold flavours such as cod, salmon and smoked haddock.

If you have not used celeriac before then you have missed a treat. I love it and often use it as a potato substitute. To prepare it just cut off the bottom and the top so you have a flat surface to work with. Then take your knife along the inside and follow the skin down from top to bottom. As you cut into the shapes required for your recipe, you can cut out the brown root bits. Treat as potatoes, although Celeriac browns pretty quickly so keep in water to prevent this. Celeriac makes an amazing alternative Potato Dauphinois – see my recipe here. Celeriac is not available all year around but is seasonal during the winter months in the UK, so make good use of it whilst it is around.

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Green Thai Pork Curry

There are so many good Green Thai Curry Pastes available in your local supermarkets that maybe you do not need to use this recipe. There is however nothing I find more satisfying than cooking with fresh ingredients. A Green Thai Curry should taste a bit sweet and sour with a creamy coconut feel and hints of Lemon Grass, Ginger and Lime. Of course one advantage of making your own from scratch means that you can adjust spiciness to your own palate. 8 net carbs per portion.

For quickness and convenience I do use lazy purée for the lemon grass and ginger but I have included the equivalent fresh amounts in the recipe below.  You can also make up extra puree and freeze it for future use.

In my recipe below I have used pork loins, however chicken and turkey would be equally as versatile in this dish.

Instead of using noodles, which are packed with carbs I used Courgette Noodles and Beansprouts, which I stir fried quickly before serving.

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English Trifle

An English Trifle is the quintessential British dessert. It is the go to dessert that every family at some occasion or other will serve when they have a large family dinner. Traditionally a proper trifle will be layered with sponge soaked in fruit, sherry and jelly, followed by a traditional egg custard and topped with whipped cream.

For this low carb version I am going to make sponge using almond flour; sugar free jelly; sweetener to replace sugar and strawberries as my fruit as they are not too high in natural sugars so lower in carbs than some fruits. Oh and no sherry. The sponge is quite dense but this is perfect for the jelly will soak into it and make it nice and moist.

Although this is a low carb version of this dessert, please be aware of the nutrient value as it has very few proteins and is high I need calories so it should still be considered a treat item and not something you should eat as part of your low carb life style daily.

There is quite a bit of making and cooling and setting so make sure you plan to make ahead of time. I have individualised the preparation time next to each component so you can plan. I normally make the day before, minus the cream layer so the trifle is completely set.

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Winter Warming Beef Stew

This Winter Warming Beef Stew is just great for those cold winter days when you need a warm up for your insides. 17g net carbs per portion.

When I attended catering college back in the 1970s, Stewing was classified as being cooked in liquid on the stove top, but frankly whatever the difference is between a stew and a casserole I know for sure that a slow or oven cooked pot of beef and root vegetables immersed in a beef stock cannot be called anything other than a Beef Stew.

This meal is a perfect low carb winter warmer making you glow inside and out. I have served mine with mashed Celeriac which I cooked in the same way as I cook mashed potato – although be sure after draining the cooking water you return to heat just to dry out slightly as Celeriac retains more water content than potatoes. Although not pictured here, a nice floret of broccoli would be a perfect accompaniment and brighten the colour on the plate.

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Shepherd’s Pie made with Butternut Squash Mash

A tasty low carb alternative Shepherd’s Pie made with Butternut Squash Mash instead of the traditional creamed potato topping. A winner for all the family.

So we have 2 British pies which are traditionally topped with mashed (creamed) potato. One is a Shepherd’s Pie and the other is a Cottage Pie. The main difference between the 2 is the meat origin. A Shepherd’s Pie uses minced lamb whilst the Cottage Pie uses minced beef.

I’ve today chosen to cook and share the recipe for a low-carb lamb version – Shepherd’s Pie.

I will be replacing the mashed potato with mashed Butternut Squash. You will notice I will regularly use this versatile squash as an alternative to potatoes. 100 gm of cooked Butternut Squash is only 10 net carbs, a typical serving is going to be about 80gm. You could replace this with Daikon Radish and prepare in the same way as the Butternut Squash, however the difference is that the Radish is only 3 net carbs, so if you are restricting carbs to loose weight, this may be your preferred alternative.

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Cauliflower Pizza Base

Using just 6 ingredients from your everyday stores you can enjoy this low carb cauliflower pizza base. There are plenty of low carb alternative pizza base recipes on the internet and I have tried many. I started out with courgettes, but I could never seem to get them dry enough to prevent a soggy base. Then I found cauliflower recipes which revolutionized my  outlook on alternative pizza bases. Net carbs 17 g per 9 inch base.

To vary the taste, I do add other vegetables to my cauliflower, cheese and egg mixture. Often I include vegetables which I want to use up. My favourites are carrot and leeks, so the recipe below will include these, but I’m sure once you’ve made this a couple of times you will experiment with what suits you. The main thing is that the cauliflower is great at making the base firmer so it is key to the ingredient list.

These bases are ideal to eat cold and once topped with tomato pizza topping and your chosen meat and vegetables make a fabulous lunch box meal.

TIP: The base should be cooked on a non-stick commodity such as a silicone baking mat or baking parchment paper.

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Easy Moussaka Recipe

This easy to follow Moussaka recipe is ideal when looking to add variety to your low carb diet. Perfect for dinner and only 17 net carbs per portion.

Traditionally a Greek Moussaka is made with Aubergines, Minced Lamb, Potatoes and a Bechamel Sauce.  In this low carb version I have replaced the potatoes with butternut squash and the bechamel sauce with Greek yoghurt.

Moussaka is made by layering the vegetables with a lightly spiced lamb sauce and then baking it to integrate the delicious flavours and permeate them throughout the dish.

TIPS:

This simple recipe does involve several stages in the preparation so be prepared to allow time for this. This will include how to stabilise your yoghurt to prevent it curdling when cooking.

Check out the recipe below.

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