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Monday, 18 June 2018

Bread Sticks : The Low Carb Way

Did you know that 'regular breadsticks, at 100 grams per serving, amount to 68g total carbs.' If husband Eddie, who is a Type 2 Diabetic ate those his blood sugars would be way too high … so if you are diabetic or like me prefer to eat low carb what do you do?

Easy! There are many low carb bread stick type recipes available and Libby at Ditch The Carbs site has recently published her version. Yes, a keto bread stick for you to enjoy! She says 'If you’ve missed bread sticks for a while then you’re in luck. These gluten-free bread sticks are wonderfully keto and really easy to make! Keep reading to find out why they are less than 1g net carbs per stick!'

Makes 20
170 g pre shredded/grated mozzarella cheese
85 g almond meal/flour *see recipe notes below
2 tbsp. cream cheese full fat
pinch salt
1 egg medium

Optional Flavours
1 tbsp. garlic crushed
1 tsp dried rosemary 

1 tbsp. parsley fresh or dried

Recipe Notes
Mozzarella dough can also be made by replacing the almond meal/flour with 1/4 cup (4 tbsp.) coconut flour.

See recipe instructions and more here

Low carb grain-free gluten-free broccoli bread sticks

Makes 12-15 breadsticks or one pizza crust
1 head of broccoli – chopped to make 4 cups
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast (could do some cheese if you would like)
1 tablespoon psyllium husk (can be omitted)
2 whole eggs (could try a flax-gel for replacement)
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
handful of fresh basil
2 tablespoons water
Pre-heat oven to 375° F.
Have a baking sheet ready to place bread sticks on.
Remove the some of the broccoli stem. Begin to chop the broccoli into chunks; depending on size broccoli head – you should hopefully get around 4 cups.
Add the chopped broccoli to a food processor or Vitamix and pulse until the texture is similar to rice.
Add in your nutritional yeast, psyllium husk, sea salt, and basil. Pulse till combined.
In a bowl place your pulsed broccoli mixture with your eggs and water. And stir.
Spread dough out evenly over baking sheet– can make as thick or thin as you like.
Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until the crust is golden, crispy on the edges and cooked through the middle.
Remove the crust from the oven. And enjoy. To make vegan with the flax-gel we would suggest adding in some baking powder about 1/2-1 tsp to help lift the bread sticks as the eggs help hold it together but also lift.

Recipe and photograph taken from here
Need help with weight/measurement conversion please see here

You will find a variety of recipe ideas within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Pork skewers with oregano and orange - served with a Greek salad

These pork skewers are lovely for a summer BBQ (although they can also be cooked on a grill). Flavoured with oregano and orange, and served with a little Greek salad ...Yum! 

Serves Four
400g (13oz) pork fillet, cubed
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp dried oregano
1 orange, zested and juiced
325g baby plum tomatoes, halved
½ red onion, sliced into wedges

olive oil, for brushing 

For the Greek salad
50g (2½oz) pitted black olives
80g (3oz) baby spinach
100g (3 1/2oz) feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. red wine vinegar 

In a bowl, toss the pork with the garlic, oregano, orange zest and juice. Leave to marinate for 10 minutes. 

Thread the pork, tomato halves and onion wedges onto skewers until all the pork is used up (reserve the leftover veg for the salad). Brush with olive oil and barbecue (or grill) for 8-10 minutes, turning once or twice, until cooked through. 

For the salad, combine the olives, spinach, feta and leftover veg. Mix the oil and vinegar, season and drizzle over the salad. Serve with the skewers. 

Nutrition Per Serving 
Carbohydrate 7.2g Protein 27.8g Fat 19g 
From a Tesco recipe here

Often used to top your favourite pizza, oregano offers you a range of health benefits you may have never considered. Oregano contains a powerful substance called beta-caryophyllene that helps fight inflammation. This herb is said to benefit people suffering conditions such as osteoporosis and arteriosclerosis. On top of it’s anti-inflammatory properties, antibacterial and antifungal properties can also be added to the list of what makes oregano a top pick. 
Incorporate oregano into your life by:
Sprinkling it on top of your next low carb pizza. You can also add a teaspoon of oregano to your homemade sauce or casserole dish.

A variety of recipe ideas are within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Wendy McNeill - In Bocca Al Lupo

It's music night and for tonight something a bit different, some old guys on accordion and a quirky singer who's obviously having fun making the video 

Take These Five For A June Harvest !

Romaine (or Cos) Lettuce

Romaine*, or Cos lettuces as they are also known, have a long, oval head of tightly packed crisp leaves.
Little Gem is a miniature version.
Cos Lettuce is believed to have originated on the Greek Island of Kos.
*In the US there has been serious problems with Romaine Lettuces, read more in this article 'Is it safe to eat romaine lettuce now?' here
See recipe suggestion here


A member of the summer squash family, courgettes are harvested when young to ensure a stronger, sweeter flavour. Choose small, firm courgettes and store them in the fridge.
See recipe suggestion here


Back in the 1800's, hawkers in London sold bunches of watercress, which were bought and eaten as snacks.
Like its cousin mustard, watercress has a strong smell and a bold peppery taste, as hinted by its Latin name, Nasturtium officinale - Nasturtium means nose twister !
Both the leaves and the stem are edible - just remove (or finely chop) any thicker stems, which can be tough.
See recipe suggestion here


Broccoli is thought to have been introduced to Britain from Italy in the 1700's, when it was sometimes called 'Italian Asparagus'. It's name translates as 'little arms'.
Like kale and cabbage, broccoli is a brassica, and is high in Vitamin C and folic acid. Although the stalks are tough, they are still edible. Best stored in an airtight bag in the fridge.

See recipe suggestion here


These wonderful berries are at their best from now until September.
Store fruit un-washed in the fridge but bring to room temperature before eating to maximise their flavour. Strawberries have the highest Vitamin C content within the berry family.
See recipe suggestion here

Idea for article from Tesco Magazine.
I wonder … have you a favourite among these?

All the best Jan

Friday, 15 June 2018

Moroccan Chicken : A Tasty and Delicious Casserole

No matter what the season, casseroles remain in my menu plans, what about you?

Serves Four
1 tbsp. olive oil
8 skin-on and bone-in chicken thighs
2 onions, halved and cut into wedges
500g baby Chantenay carrots, trimmed
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1½ tbsp. harissa spice mix (from a jar)
3-4 preserved lemons, drained and sliced
3 tbsp. pitted green olives

500ml chicken stock

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C, fan 160°C, gas 4. Heat the oil in a casserole and brown the chicken in batches.

2. Soften the onion and carrots in the casserole for 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, then stir in the spice mix. Return the chicken to the pan, putting it on top of the vegetables, skin-side up. Add the preserved lemons and olives, then pour over the stock. Bring to the boil. Cover and cook in the oven for about 45 minutes until the chicken thighs are cooked through. Check the seasoning and serve.
Why not serve with Cauliflower Couscous - see here

Make the day before; cool, cover and chill.
It can also be frozen

Nutrition Per Serving:
Fat 22g Protein 34g Carbs 15g
From an original idea here

A variety of recipe ideas are within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Computer or Phone - Tips to protect your eyes when staring at a screen

Rachel Morrow at Food Matters writes:
"Stare At A Screen All Day : Three Things To Do To Protect Your Eyes ! 
Our eyes are pretty amazing organs. We get to witness the outside world with them. Every day they are exposed to constant stimulation yet continue to work efficiently, for most of us. The thing is, the stimulus that we are exposing our eyes to has changed drastically over the years. We are now in a digital age - A time where our digital screen time and lifestyle is slowing down our eye's efficiency due to continuous stress on the eyes. One of the most common stressors to eye strain, blue light! Visible light is defined by how long the wavelengths are and how much energy is produced. The longer the wavelength, the less energy is produced (safer), and the shorter the wavelength, the more energy is produced (potentially dangerous).

Here's a quick breakdown on red light vs blue light:
Red light, like from a heating lamp, is an example of a long-wavelength, low-energy light.
Blue light, from digital devices like computer screens, phones, and TVs has the shortest wavelengths and is, therefore, the highest energy. Blue light is damaging to the eyes because, unlike other UV rays that are blocked by the cornea and the lens, virtually all visible blue light passes through and goes straight to the light-sensitive retina, causing damage that can lead to degenerative conditions and vision loss.
Naturally, we are exposed to small amounts of blue light from sunlight during the day, the damage comes when we have excessive exposure in front of electronic devices, especially at night-time, which emits significant amounts of blue light. Staring at a screen for long periods of time can cause eye fatigue and other symptoms such as eyestrain, dry eyes, headache, fatigue, blurred vision, and difficulty focusing and sleeping.

A Harvard Medical School study found that blue light exposure at night suppressed melatonin production for about twice as long as the green light and shifted circadian rhythms by twice as much.

OK, we get it, there are 101 things you need to remember to do daily to maintain your health, and now you've got to think about how much time you're spending staring at your screens? Before you panic, we want you to know there are some really simple things you can do to prevent the damage. Here's how you can start:

1. Eat Foods For Eye Health
We love the saying "you are what you eat"! Some of the best foods you can include in your diet for eye health include:
Dark Leafy Greens: The carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin are primarily found in green leafy vegetables, with kale and spinach topping the list of lutein-rich foods. Other healthy options include Swiss chard, collard greens, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts. Lutein and zeaxanthin are both important nutrients for eye health, as both of them are found in high concentrations in your macula — the small central part of your retina responsible for detailed central vision.
Orange Fruit & Vegetables: Think carrots, pumpkin, oranges and sweet potato. Eating a variety of these is going to give your body the nutrients it needs to maintain healthy eyesight. This is largely due to the high amounts of vitamin A, phytonutrients, vitamin C, lutein & zeaxanthin.
Healthy Fats: Since many of the vitamins are responsible for eye health are “fat-soluble nutrients” - that are absorbed best when eaten with a source of lipids (fats). Pair these vitamins with something like omega-3 foods (like salmon), coconut oil, olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds for proper absorption.

2. Hello, New Computer And Phone Habits!
How much time do you spend on your phone, computer, or watching TV per day? Really think about this... It’s probably a lot more than you think. Young adults are spending about five hours per day on their phone, just their phone. If you work in front of a computer for eight hours per day, add that in plus whatever time you spend in front of a TV at night watching Netflix or FMTV ;-) That's a fair chunk of your day!
Our tips: Take frequent breaks by looking away from the screen for 2 to 3 minutes every 15 to 20 minutes. Glare from digital screens can also have an effect on the eyes, so try to avoid overhead lights and use a desk lamp instead to control the glare that might come in from any nearby windows. Blue light blocker glasses are now widely available that can help filter the blue light coming from digital devices. You can also install blue light filters on most smartphones. Our biggest tip would be to challenge yourself to spend some time off your screen at night, especially 2-3 hours before bed - You may even notice a more restful nights sleep - Winning!

3. Change Up Your Lifestyle Habits
The smallest changes to our daily routine can help take stress off of our eyes. Start thinking about things like:
Wear sunglasses: Find yourself outdoors for long periods of time? Wearing sunglasses can help to protect your eyes from excessive exposure to UVA and UVB.
Stop smoking: No brainer here, but smoking cigarettes produces cyanide, which is damaging to the eyes.
Hydrate your eyeballs: Hold up on the staring competitions and blink - blinking is actually our eyes way of Moving.
Move your body: Turns out, being active isn't just good for your booty! Although exercise is considered beneficial for overall health, it can also help support healthy vision. Aim to be active for 30 minutes a day to feel the benefits, this will also get you away from the screens!

The world has changed, and while it seems we may be bound to our screens from morning through to night, we can start being more aware of what these amazing organs are going through and look after them like they deserve!" 

You will find a variety of articles, studies and recipe ideas within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Bacon, Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad : Low Carb

Take some broccoli and cauliflower

Add these five ingredients

and you end up with a wonderful
Bacon, Broccoli and Cauliflower Low Carb Salad

Serves Four
150 g broccoli chopped
150 g cauliflower chopped

Creamy Bacon Sauce
3 slices bacon diced
1 spring onion (scallion) sliced
150 g sour cream
1 tbsp. vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
50 g nuts and seeds optional
(e.g. mixture of pumpkin seeds, walnuts and sliced almonds)

Cooking Instructions
for this family favourite,
which has a creamy bacon sauce over the broccoli and cauliflower,
and is perfect for a healthy low-carb barbecue
can be found at 'Ditch the Carbs' site here

All the best Jan

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

How many teaspoons of sugar are in your food?

"The glycemic index predicts how much glucose you are going to absorb into your blood, compared to pure glucose. Brown bread has a lower glycemic index than table sugar. The teaspoon equivalent makes it easier to see how much a food raises blood sugar. For example, 150 g boiled rice will raise blood sugar as much as 10 teaspoons of sugar will do."


Monday, 11 June 2018

Grilled Peaches : A Summer Dessert

Stunning. Simple. Effortless.
Tastes good too!
A celebration of summer.
All of those words perfectly describe this wonderful dessert!

Serves Four
11g carbs per serving
3 ripe peaches
2 tablespoons butter or coconut oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup (240ml) heavy (double) whipping cream
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

The peaches may also be served with a generous amount of non-flavoured Greek yogurt.
These grilled peaches adore a hint of vanilla or lime zest!
See recipe instruction here

Cinnamon is a popular spice often associated with baked treats, cereals and smoothies.
However, you may not have considered that the teaspoon of cinnamon that you add to your baked treats may be doing you more good than you realized.
Studies have shown that cinnamon could assist with boosting brain function, fighting cancer, aiding in digestion, supporting weight loss and fighting diabetes.

Wishing you a happy day

All the best Jan

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Lara Fabian " You're Not From Here "

It's music night and time to wind down for the weekend with a chill out song from a lady with a great voice

Cinnamon Coffee Cake : Low Carb

Can you resist cake? I do enjoy a slice occasionally, and this low carb recipe does go nicely with a cup of tea ... although you may prefer coffee!

Low Carb Sour Cream Cinnamon Coffee Cake
2 cups of almond flour finely milled
1 ¼ cup of sugar substitute
2 tablespoons of baking powder
2 1/2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of sea salt
¼ teaspoon of baking soda
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
½ cup (1 stick) melted butter cooled
1 cup of sour cream
2 eggs

Low Carb Crumb Topping
1 cup of almond flour (e.g. finely milled)
½ cup of coconut flour
½ cup of sugar substitute (e.g. Swerve)
½ cup of your favourite low carb nuts ( e.g. pecans)
½ cup (1 stick) cold butter sliced thinly
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon of sea salt

1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch spring-form cake pan.
2. Make the crumb topping: In a small bowl, combine the sugar substitute, almond flour, coconut flour, pecan nuts, salt and cinnamon. To the dry ingredients add I thinly sliced cold butter and cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.
3. Cake batter: In a large mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, sugar substitute, spices, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt. In a small bowl, stir the cooled melted butter, sour cream, and eggs until they are well combined. Fold the butter & sour cream mixture into the batter dry ingredients. Mix until well incorporated. Spread the batter into the spring-form pan and sprinkle the crumb topping over the cake.
4. Bake the cake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the crumbs are lightly browned and until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
5. Cool the cake for 20 minutes before slicing and serving.

Serves 15
3.6 net carbs per slice
Enjoy ...

Recipe seen here, from an original idea here
If you need help with weight/measurement conversion, look here

Did you know ... Cinnamon is a popular spice often associated with baked treats, cereals and smoothies. However, you may not have considered that the teaspoon of cinnamon that you add to your baked treats may be doing you more good than you realized. Studies have shown that cinnamon could assist with boosting brain function, fighting cancer, aiding in digestion, supporting weight loss and fighting diabetes.

You may have noticed that this recipe does not contain coffee! Well, the reason being is that 'The American Coffee Cake does not contain coffee. It's traditionally a cake which is to be served alongside coffee. It is agreed that the concept of coffee cake originated in Northern and Central Europe sometime in the 17th century. The countries in these areas baked traditional sweet yeast breads, so when coffee was introduced to Europe, these cakes were the perfect accompaniment. When the German, Dutch and Scandinavian immigrated to America, they brought with them their wonderful recipes.

Originally more bread like, coffee cakes have evolved and changed. They are still a relatively plain cake, perfect with that cup of coffee, but now fruits, cheese, nuts, sour cream or other creams are used in this wonderfully moreish cake. It is a true taste of American baking!' 

... would you like coffee or tea with your slice!

A variety of recipe ideas are within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Friday, 8 June 2018

A Walk In The Garden ...

Fifteen years ago we had a dream. We discovered this place and decided that when we retired we would live here. For most of us dreams do not come true, but this one did. What appealed to us more than anything else were the fabulous gardens at this property. Fifteen years on, and we moved in earlier this year. We cannot take the credit for these beautiful grounds, as others including professionals maintain them, but ...

Is there anything better than a walk in the garden

the summer bedding so colourful

the woodland area beloved by us, various birds and squirrels

there is even a pond, the water-lilies will be flowering soon and the reeds give a nice display

an oasis of calm in an ever changing world

Yes, we are very fortunate.
Follow your dream ...

All the best
Jan and Eddie

Thursday, 7 June 2018

A Watermelon Pizza : Perfect For Warmer Summer Days

What a great idea this is! Watermelon Pizza ... it's just perfect for those warm summer days and enjoying fresh fruits that you find in the supermarkets, farmers markets, or indeed may grow yourself! The recipe is simple and takes less than 10 minutes to put together ...

Serves Six
1 seedless watermelon
6 - 8 Tablespoons of Vanilla Yogurt (whole milk Greek Yogurt is good)
1/4 - 1/2 cup blueberries
1/4 - 1/2 cup strawberries, sliced

1. Create the "crust" of the pizza, by slicing a piece of watermelon that is about 1 1/2 - 2 inches thick. The centre of the watermelon will create the biggest pizza.
2. Lay the slice of watermelon on a cookie sheet (flat baking sheet) covered with parchment paper.
3. Cut the slice into 6 pieces.
4. Spread about 1 TBL Vanilla Yogurt on each slice.
5. Top with delicious blueberries and strawberries.

Why not add a handful of raspberries too!

From an original idea here
Need help with weight/measurement conversion, look here

A variety of recipe ideas are within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Cauliflower Tabbouleh with Halloumi Cheese : Low Carb, Gluten Free

This recipe suggestion is a gluten-free and low-carb variant of tabbouleh using grated cauliflower instead of bulgur, it's served with freshly fried halloumi and a creamy sauce which gives a good touch of spiciness...

Serves Two
13g carb per serving
7 oz. (200g) halloumi cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 oz. (75g) baby gem lettuce or Romaine lettuce
2 tablespoons pistachio nuts (optional)
salt and pepper, to taste

Low-carb tabbouleh
9 oz. (250g) cauliflower
1 tomato
½ cup (125ml) fresh parsley
2 scallions (spring onions)
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ tablespoon dried mint
salt and pepper, to taste

Creamy sauce
1⁄3 cup (75ml) sour cream or Greek yogurt
½ tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt, to taste

This refreshing salad also works great as a side dish for grilled chicken, lamb or beef.
If you are having a barbecue ... why not fry the halloumi on the grill, it will be even more delicious.

Can be seen here

Halloumi is a firm, slightly springy white cheese from Cyprus, traditionally made with sheep's milk, although these days mass-produced varieties often use cows’ milk. In texture, halloumi is similar to a firm mozzarella, making it a popular ingredient in Middle Eastern cooking. Unlike mozzarella, however, it has a strong salty flavour, particularly when preserved in brine.

Halloumi Cheese, is definitely to be enjoyed, see here

A variety of recipe ideas are found within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Low-carb and alcohol : Can I drink wine on a (low carb) keto diet?

Many people wonder whether it’s OK to drink alcohol on a (low carb) keto diet.
If you are meticulous about what wine you choose, then it usually works out great.

Above taken from Diet Doctor site here

All the best Jan

    Monday, 4 June 2018

    Triple Berry Summer Salad : So Delicious

    I first came across this recipe idea three years ago, and Wow ... Wow ... Wow, it's still simply amazing! This triple berry summer salad is simply wonderful. Just have a read of the ingredients and your taste buds are already in action savouring the great taste. Make a note of the ingredients - go out and get them and then just make and enjoy this super summer salad.

    Serves four
    9oz baby spinach, torn
    1 cup sliced strawberries
    1 cup raspberries
    1 cup blueberries
    1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
    1/3 cup chopped basil
    1 avocado, chopped
    4oz goat cheese

    1. Divide baby spinach between plates then top with berries, almonds*, basil and chopped avocado. Crumble goat cheese on top then dress with salad dressing. You could use a strawberry balsamic vinegar, but any olive-oil based vinaigrette would be fantastic.
    2. So easy and fabulously fresh, no-cook, and light ...yet filling from the goat cheese and avocado. You could if you wish serve it with some grilled chicken breast marinated in some of that balsamic vinegar. Dear readers it's entirely up to you.

    *The easiest way to toast almonds is to spread them on a plate and microwave in thirty second increments until they’re golden brown. You could also do this in the oven, but sometimes you just don't need the oven on!

    I hope you enjoy this taste of summer soon, see original recipe idea here 
    If you should need help with measurement/weight conversion see here

    All the best Jan

    Sunday, 3 June 2018

    Kedgeree : Made The Low Carb Way

    Yes, this dish is so tasty, and made a nice change to start our day. Some Sunday's it's just nice to take things slowly ... today is one of them! A leisurely breakfast with tea for me and coffee for Eddie.

    We hadn't had Kedgeree for a while, don't know why, but rectified it today. If you haven't tried this low carb recipe idea using cauliflower instead of rice we can recommend it.

    It is a great meal, which can be served anytime of day. It is low in carbs, and if you are a diabetic, can help you keep those BG numbers to non diabetic, it is very tasty too.

    (serves 2)
    1 small cauliflower, grated
    1 red onion, finely chopped
    2 table spoons of Patak's (or similar) Madras curry paste
    3 boiled eggs (8 minutes in boiling water), quartered
    250g smoked haddock, or unsmoked salmon is also good, poached in water for 5 minutes
    Lots of finely chopped parsley, or coriander
    Some lemon wedges to serve.

    Fry the onion in olive oil or butter until soft. Add the curry paste and fry for 3-4 minutes more. Now add the grated cauliflower and cook until all the ingredients are well coloured, maybe 8-10 minutes.
    Add the flaked fish, then the herbs and finally the eggs.
    Salt and pepper to taste, then spoon onto warmed plates with the lemon wedges.

    Delicious - make a note to myself - we really must have this more often!

    All the best Jan

    Saturday, 2 June 2018

    33Tours - California Dreamin

    It's music night and this week a cover of the Mamas and Papas California Dreamin mixed with Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata

    Friday, 1 June 2018

    Two cups of milk every day can protect obese children from diabetes, metabolic syndrome 

    NEW YORK: Is your child obese? If so, drinking at least two servings of any type of cows' milk each day are more likely to have lower fasting insulin, indicating better blood sugar control -- risk factors for metabolic syndrome, according to a study.

    Metabolic syndrome is defined as the presence of at least three of five conditions that increase the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke--high blood pressure, high levels of blood sugar or triglycerides, excess belly fat, and low "good" cholesterol levels  

    The results showed that children who drank less than one cup of milk each day had significantly higher levels of fasting insulin than those who drank less than or at least two cups a day.

    "Our findings indicate that obese children who consume at least the daily recommended amount of milk may have more favourable sugar handling and this could help guard against metabolic syndrome," said Michael Yafi from the University of Texas Health Science Centre, US

    For the study, the team analysed 353 obese kids and adolescents aged three to 18 years and recorded information on daily milk intake, milk types, sugary drinks intake, fasting blood glucose, and insulin sensitivity.

    The results presented at 2018 European Congress on Obesity (ECO) in Austria, showed that kids who drank at least two cups of milk a day no association between milk intake and blood glucose or lipid levels.

    Another study, presented at the 2018 ECO, stated that dairy products had no link in the development of childhood obesity, as thought earlier.

    According to the researchers, no evidence was found to suggest that body fatness varied by type of milk or dairy products, or with age .. 


    Bank Holiday's, Wonderful Days and Low Carb Ice Cream !

    Did you know that Bank Holiday's in the UK date back to 1871,
    read more about that here

    We've recently had a three day Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK and for most the weather was good, but as well as the Bank Holiday it's also been a week off school for many UK schools.

    These two grandchildren spent some wonderful days
    including a visit to Lulworth Cove 

    yes, looking at a lovely view of the path and Cove
    which they had fun walking/climbing down carefully!

    Durdle Door (sometimes written Durdle Dor) a natural limestone arch near Lulworth

    and there is always time for fun at the park
    bless them ...

    Of course it's always nice to enjoy some ice cream,

    Blueberry Ice Cream Delight
    it's low carb, see more here

    All the best Jan

    Thursday, 31 May 2018

    Italian Stuffed Roast Pork ... a special dish !

    If you may have a family, or friends, gathering coming up soon, then this recipe suggestion by Lucy Jessop at Sainsbury's Magazine could be just what you need ...
    It's Italian stuffed roast pork and I'm sure that your family/friends will love it!

    Serves Six
    2 tbsp. olive oil
    1 medium leek, white part only, finely chopped
    2 (Sicilian-inspired) pork sausages
    10 sage leaves, finely chopped
    20 g breadcrumbs
    20 g blanched almonds, chopped
    1 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
    zest and juice of 1 lemon
    1.5 kg boneless loin of pork, skin scored, at room temperature
    2 tsp sea salt
    3 fennel bulbs, quartered and sliced, fronds reserved
    100 g cubetti di pancetta
    200 g kale

    1. Preheat the oven to 220°C, fan 200°C, gas 7. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a frying pan; add the leeks and cook for 8-10 minutes until soft; transfer to a bowl. Squeeze the sausage-meat from their skins and add to the leeks. Add the sage, breadcrumbs, almonds, half the fennel seeds and the lemon zest. Season and mix well.
    2. Remove any string from the pork and unroll, skin-side down, on a clean board. Using a sharp knife, cut into the meat horizontally about two-thirds of the way along (but not all the way through), keeping your knife parallel to the board, to make a pocket. Open the meat out like a book and spread the stuffing into the opened-out joint, leaving a 2cm border. Roll up tightly; tie with string.
    3. Weigh to calculate the cooking time (see step 4); transfer to a roasting tin. Rub the skin with 1 teaspoon of the oil. Mix the remaining fennel seeds with the sea salt and spread over the scored skin. Roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
    4. Meanwhile, in a bowl, toss the fennel with the remaining olive oil and the pancetta; season with black pepper. After 20 minutes, remove the pork from the oven and scatter the fennel mixture into the tin. Reduce the temperature to 160°C, fan 140°C, gas 3; return to the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes (or 25 minutes per 500g) until cooked through. Transfer the pork to a board, cover and leave to rest for at least 20 minutes.
    5. Meanwhile, cook the kale in boiling water for 3-4 minutes until tender; drain and add to the tin with the fennel. Toss together, add the fennel fronds and lemon juice and season. Serve with the pork.

    You can stuff the pork up to a few hours ahead; chill. Return to room temperature before roasting.

    Hope you may enjoy this special dish soon ...
    Happy cooking - Cottura felice !

    If you are looking for a low carb dessert, how about this one.

    Crunchy Berry Mousse 
    this simple low carb dessert is just delightful.
    It's one that the whole family (and friends) can sit down and enjoy.
    The combination of berries, cream and pecan nuts with a touch of citrus ... delicious, more details here

    A variety of recipe ideas are in this blog, and not all may be suitable for you, if you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues please take these into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

    All the best Jan

    Wednesday, 30 May 2018

    Tom Watson MP : Deputy Labour Leader : Low Carbing !

    You may have already read about Deputy Labour Leader Tom Watson and his weight loss...
    With headlines such as:

    Tom Watson: weight struggle made me realise scale of obesity crisis ... and 

    Politician loses weight on low carb and realizes we can do more to combat obesity.

    Yes, after reading about how other politicians died early from lifestyle-related diseases, British politician Tom Watson decided to take control of his weight and started low carbing

    He is now 84 pounds (38 kg) lighter and his weight loss has made him realize that not enough is done to overcome the obesity epidemic.

    He said, " I kept reading about Labour politicians that died early in their 50s and 60s and I want to get healthy, and actually for me the journey’s been very interesting because what I realise is there’s a lot more we can do in public health to deal with the obesity crisis, because you know we’ve got 10 million of these people heading to diabetes, another 15 million sitting behind them are overweight. "

    The Guardian: Tom Watson: weight struggle made me realise scale of obesity crisis, see here

    Article also seen on Diet Doctor site here

    Read our 'Introduction to low-carb for beginners' here 

    All the best Jan

    Olive Oil ... some facts and information

    Olive oil is probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's mainly made in the Mediterranean, primarily in Italy, Spain and Greece (though countries such as America and Australia also produce it). Much like wine-making, climate, soil and the way the olives are harvested and pressed all have an impact on an oil's character.

    Olive oil is assessed on three criteria - fruitiness, bitterness and pepperiness - the flavour, smell and colour can vary radically, both according to its origin, as well as whether it's extra virgin (the finest grade) or not.

    Generally speaking, the hotter the country, the more robust the flavour of the oil. It is also possible to flavour olive oil with herbs and spices by steeping them in the oil for ten days or so (though chilli needs far less time).

    All year round.

    Choose the best:
    Extra virgin oil is the most expensive type, and is made from the first cold pressing of the olives. It has a very low acidity rate (under 1%) and is best used for dipping or to dress salads - both because its superior flavour is impaired by heat and because it has a low smoking point.

    Virgin olive oil is also a first pressing, but has a slightly higher acidity level (under 2%). It should be used in much the same way as extra virgin, and can also be used to cook Mediterranean dishes to create an authentic flavour (but should not be used for deep frying).

    Refined to remove its impurities, and blended to improve flavour, pure olive oil is the cheapest olive oil there is. Its flavour is quite bland, so it's not worth using it on salads, but it's a good all-purpose cooking oil (again, don't deep fry with it).

    Oils from Spain tend to be smooth, sweet and fruity, with hints of melon and nuts and very faint bitterness - they're quite versatile.

    The flavour of Italian oils varies from region to region. The north produces oils that are mild, slightly nutty, and very good with fish. Oils from the centre of the country are stronger-tasting, with grassy notes. Southern Italy, including Sicily, produces oils that have a drier, more herbal flavour.

    Greek olive oils are herby, fruity and sometimes peppery - good all-rounders.

    Prepare it:
    Olive oil is ready to cook with. If you have flavoured olive oil with any herbs and spices, these should be strained out - pour the strained olive oil into a clean bottle before you use it.

    Store it:
    Olive oil deteriorates when exposed to direct sunlight, so keep it in an airtight bottle a cool, dark place, like a kitchen cupboard, rather than sitting out on a worktop or window sill. Olive oil does not improve with age, and is best consumed within a year of bottling.

    Above from article here

    a couple of recipe suggestions using olive oil

    Tomato and Mint Salad
    A fruity Sicilian olive oil brings out the best in this refreshing salad
    details here

    Green Pepper Tortilla
    great for lunch - details here

    A variety of articles and recipe ideas are found within this blog. Please note, not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

    All the best Jan