Why it is awesome to cook

Apr 21, 2014 by

I haven’t been posting a lot lately, but I have still been cooking quite a bit.  More than every actually because of the new keto diet I’ve been on lately.

A couple things I’ve noticed in cooking a lot more.

  1. I’m really good at cooking eggs now.  It’s funny how you don’t think of cooking as practice, but it is.  The more you do it, the better you become at it.
  2. It is still a lot of fun to sit back and eat something wonderful you have made yourself

All that said, I came across this video and it’s worth a watch.

As I have been cooking a lot, I have many recipes ready to post, now I just need to find the time to post them.

Stay tuned

Ben…

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A Simple Crunchy Salad

Apr 21, 2014 by

I love this salad.  I love this salad for several reasons.  First, its delicious.  Second, its super easy to make.  Third, its very easy to make ahead of time and then mix all the parts together when you are ready to eat it… aka its great to take camping.  And fourth, it uses the cabbage I grow in my garden and sometimes I struggle to find recipes to eat all the cabbage. But this salad is very easy to make, is very tasty and is a nice change from the normal boring salad. IMG_3245 Here’s how you make it. First you will need a head of cabbage.  here is an awesome one that I grabbed from the garden. IMG_3087 Second, you’ll need some chicken.  I used the leftover chicken I had from the Greek Pita recipe.  It was super tasty, but you can just use any chicken however you’d like to prepare it.  Cut it up into chunks and cook it up. IMG_3104 Next you’ll need some Oriental flavor top ramen.  You know its awesome when there is ramen in it! IMG_3114 Before you open the ramen package, smash it against the counter a few times to break it up. IMG_3120   IMG_3124 You want to chop up the cabbage.  If you have a mandoline slicer, now is the time to bust it out and use it. IMG_3131 Chicken is cooked and looking and smelling awesome.  Set it aside. IMG_3140 Throw the ramen noodles in a sauce pan. IMG_3143 Add a couple tablespoons of butter and the oriental seasoning packet and cook it up for a few minutes.   You want it to remain crunchy and mix in the flavor, so only cook it for a c0uple of minutes. IMG_3148 that is a lot of cabbage, but thats why I love this recipe.  If you keep the parts separated you can mix it together any time you are ready to enjoy this. IMG_3155 Ok, now to make the dressing for this salad.   Super easy.  In a small tupperware container mix 1/4 cup sugar. IMG_3186 Then add 1/4 cup white wine vinegar IMG_3195 Then a tablespoon of oil. IMG_3207 and finally a teaspoon of pepper. IMG_3221 Now put the lid on and shake it up.  You are done with the dressing. IMG_3205 If you are making this all at once, put the cabbage in a big bowl and add 1 cup of peanuts.   Then add the chicken and salad dressing and shake it all up.  Top it off with the crunchy raman noodles and you are set.  I prefer to leave the components separated so I can make the salads individually.  Again this is super easy to make ahead of time and put into separate zip lock backs for camping.  Its a great lite salad to break out at lunch. IMG_3242 Here is the final product.  The savory chicken with the tangy and sweet dressing mixes with the crunchy noodles for the perfect salad that has an amazing texture.  Try this salad out next time you want something new and tasty.  It is awesome.

Ben…

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Zucchini Pizza and Cheese Fried in Cheese (KETO)

Feb 11, 2014 by

Wow has it been a long time since I’ve posted a recipe.   I’ve been very busy with a lot of new projects and a new kid and thus I have not taken the time to get some new posts up.  I’ve been cooking a lot as usual, but in a new way.  I recently started on the KETO diet as a way to lose some weight, but really more to experiment with an entirely different way to eat and see how my body liked it.  I’ve been having some bad allergies and sinus issues where I couldn’t taste anything, hence the no new recipes for a while.  Allergy shots have been helping and the new diet is in full effect.  I’m still learning as I go as its a whole different paradigm, but the essentials are, low carbs, high fat.

With that, I’ve been cooking some fun low carb recipes lately and this was one of them.  You know I love zucchini and put it in everything from muffins, to waffles so I was happy to incorporate it into my low carb pizza.  This meal turned out amazing and I LOVE the marinara sauce.  It’s so simple and so tasty.

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Here’s the final product and it is good.  Now lets get making with the food.

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Here’s what you’ll need for the marinara sauce.  I modified the recipe from this one.

Ingredients:

  • 28 oz can Peeled San Marzano Tomatoes
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

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Here’s the easiest part of this recipe.  Put all of that into a blender or Nutribullet and blend it up.  It’s just that simple.

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Now onto the pizza making parts.  You’ll need some zucchini, mozzarella cheese and pepperonis

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Slice the zucchini at 1/4 inch strips.  A mandolin slicer is the way to go for this.

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Grill them up on high heat for 30-45 seconds per side.  You just want them to have the nice little lines but still be firm.

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Line a baking sheet with tin foil and lay down your zucchini strips.  Add a little salt and pepper and spoon on your marinara sauce

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add your pepperonis

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and then the cheese and throw it in the oven at 350 until the cheese is melted (about 5 minutes).

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Viola, super yummy and low carb pizza.  Now onto the cheese fried in cheese

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To make these cheese sticks you will need…

Ingredients:

  • String cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • almond flour
  • oregano
  • basil
  • garlic powder
  • an egg or two
  • pork rinds

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basically you are going to dip the string cheese into the egg and then into your coating and deep fry them.  I experimented and tried out two different coatings.  The first was just Parmesan cheese and the spices.  Pour out your cheese onto a plate.

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add in your spices.  This was all by eye.  I used a good sprinkle of garlic powder and a nice dash of oregano and basil.

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for the other mixture experiment I crushed up some pork rinds

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and then added almond flour and the spices

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I got this nice consistency

again, just cut the string cheese in half to get more manageable pieces.  Dip them in the egg, then roll them in the mixes and set on a tray.

Before frying in oil, put the coated cheese pieces in the freezer for 20-30 minutes so they can chill out and be easier to work with when you are frying them up.

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Fry them in oil as you would deep fry anything else.  They only need to cook for a very short time until they are nice and golden brown.  Both mixtures turned out good, but I think the cheese only mixture was the slight favorite.  My friend who ate with us that night was blown away that you could fry cheese coated in cheese.  He was very happy.

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speaking of happy, here was my little helper for the evening and one of the reasons I’m not posting as much lately.  He’s worth it.

As always, let me know how it turns out when you make this

Ben…

 

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Resolutions Start When You Do

Dec 29, 2013 by

The simple truth of news resolutions is that they only work when you do.  Within that truth lies this one; your resolutions start when you do.  You can have great ideas and plans for all the great things you want to change in the new year, but they won’t happen until you start.   As with all of these weekly posts I’ve been posting for the past year, it comes down to simple actions being taken.  Thinking about and planning the great diets and workout routines you will start in the new year don’t amount to squat unless you take action on them daily.

Soon you will see a lot of new faces at the gym and running along the streets in your area.  Very soon after you won’t see those faces anymore.

It all comes down to taking action.  Intentions are well and good, but they don’t make the difference.  Your resolutions start when you do, not on January 1st.

If you make any resolutions this year, let them be to take some simple actions toward your goals.  If you are looking for any simple actions to take each week to make your life better, then check out any of the 51 suggestions below.

Have a safe and happy new year and may 2014 be the best year you’ve ever made for yourself and others.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing. Previous TSA’s: 

 

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Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas

Dec 23, 2013 by

If you’ve been paying attention, the last several week’s posts have all been about adding a little holiday joy into your life.  I hope you’ve taken the time and action to do just that, but if not, its not too late.

Tomorrow is Christmas eve and as the calendar goes, Christmas the next day. You have two full days to decorate your house a little, make some Christmas cookies, and call up some friends to come over for a nice holiday get together.  Throw some Christmas music on Pandora, or watch your favorite Christmas movie with your family and friends and enjoy the moment.

The point is to have yourself a merry little Christmas.  That is all you have to do this week.

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Merry Christmas from our family to yours.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing. Previous TSA’s: 

 

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Add a Little Holiday Spirit

Dec 16, 2013 by

Building upon my previous post of creating your own traditions, infusing a little holiday spirit can be just just as simple as adding a little candy cane.

Candy Cane Cookies

If you are looking for an easy way to infuse some holiday spirit, just make some chocolate chip cookies and add in some crushed up candy cane.   It’s just that simple.

These are perfect for any holiday party or just to make the house smell awesome while you are wrapping presents.

My wife gave me the best compliment after making these, which was

“Never make these again!  They are too good and I can’t stop eating them!”

Your Truly Simple Action this week is to infuse a little holiday spirit into your week.  Turn on some Christmas music.  Make some cookies.  Invite some friends over for some eggnog (WARNING: Adults only!)

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing. Previous TSA’s: 

 

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YOU Create Your Traditions

Dec 11, 2013 by

Close your eyes and think back to your favorite Christmas as a child.

I remember going up into the mountains to chop down a tree.  We spent more time getting stuck in the snow and helping out others get unstuck than we did getting the tree, but it was so much fun and exciting.

I remember the most delicious eggnog every year from our neighbors Christmas eve party.

I remember finding the little tiniest piece of plastic left out by my parents as they assembled the Millennium Falcon and being able to identify exactly what it was and knowing what I was going to get to open on Christmas day.

I remember hanging the stockings by the fireplace.

Those traditions I cherish didn’t just spring magically into existence.    My parents, neighbors, friends and relatives all worked to create those magical moments that I now remember fondly.

Now it is your turn.

Those fond memories of traditions past don’t create themselves.  It’s time to start a new tradition for your family.

I now have a son and this is his first Christmas so now I get to create some fun traditions for our family.  Now granted he’s only 11 weeks old and is happy with the blinking lights on the Christmas tree and won’t remember anything else, but I get the opportunity to create something magical.  I get the chance to create happy times among family and friends that will last for years to come.  I get to carry on traditions of the past and create new ones to be carried on in the future.  I get to create something to look forward to every year.

Could you use a few more great things to look forward to around the holidays?

Your Truly Simple Action is to create a new tradition this year and make something magical that you’ll look forward to recreating next year.

This will be fun and here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Invite some friends and family over for a Christmas party
  • Bake some cookies and deliver them to neighbors
  • Make some Eggnog (Warning: Adults ONLY) and sing Christmas carols
  • Adopt a family in need and buy them some gifts

The point is to take some time this year and create a new tradition that will last for years to come and will create wonderful memories for all those who take part.

What are your favorite holiday traditions that you do with your friends and family?  Share them in the comments to give some good ideas to others.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing. Previous TSA’s: 

 

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