Thursday, December 13, 2012

Breakfast for Dinner

It's funny, but I'm rarely in the mood for "breakfast" at breakfast time. I feel like I should eat SOMETHING as soon as I wake up, but I don't feel like putzing around and cooking anything, so more often than not, I eat a couple hard boiled eggs and a cheese stick with a veggie or two (cucumbers, a couple grape tomatoes, etc.)
But breakfast for dinner? I'm all over that. So here is my super simple low carb breakfast for dinner...
Two eggs with a splash of HWC scrambled in butter with a sprinkle of shredded cheddar, two links heat and serve sausage (I believe it's 2 g carb/serving, which is 3 links, but I had two), and two strips of Wright's brand smoked bacon (which is scrumptious). 

Where have you been all my low carbbing life?

Hubs and I eat lunch out a lot. He works nights, sleeps in way later than necessary, so lunch is our together time. 

I've been looking around at low carb message boards, like Low Carb Friends, for new places to eat, and Jimmy John's comes up a lot. A sub place on a low carb diet? Pshaw! But what makes Jimmy John's unique is the Unwich. A low carber's dream? Perhaps. It certainly does make ordering a lot easier when the low carb option is front and center on the menu (don't believe me? check it out right here). No meekly ordering a salad when everyone else is chomping down on a sub. This thing is a miracle in sandwich engineering; no bread, but wrapped in such a way that you can actually hold it while eating it. Genius! I have to admit, I'm biased toward eating things with my hands, which is why In-N-Out will always win over any burger place where I'm required to use a knife and fork. 

Also, Jimmy John's website has awesome nutritional information. Pick your sandwich and you can add and subtract ingredients. It will recalculate with each ingredient. Makes knowing what you want to order a whole lot easier!

This one, incidentally is a #9 Italian Night Club with Turkey substituted for the ham. It was delicious. Jimmy John's will be added to the regular lunchtime rotation.
The Unwich

Oh, drama

I hate to get off topic so early in my blogging life, but I have to get this out there. Two weeks ago, my mother was diagnosed with Stage 2 lung cancer. She is 53, and so full of life. It sounds typical, but my mother really is my best friend. We see each other every day, and call or text constantly. Her being a younger, single mom meant that she was my whole world. And aside from the kiddo and hubs, she still is. She's a petite 5'2'' and about 100 pounds soaking wet.
It was fluky the way we found out. She was having a minor surgery, so they were doing those standard pre-surgery blood tests. Her white count was high and doc decided to put her on antibiotics before and after the surgery just to clear whatever it was up. But the post-surgery blood tests came back with high white count again. Perplexed, they sent her to an oncologist. More tests, and a PET scan. We were sure that they were going to come back and say that she had a bladder infection or something stupid, and we'd be on our way. Side note- have you ever sat in an oncologists waiting room? It's the saddest place in the world. We were sitting in there waiting to see the doc, making each other laugh like the jackasses we are until we were crying, and in the most inappropriate place. A gentleman was wheeled in by his wife, and as she was checking him in, he started crying uncontrollably. That got us to stop our joking, for sure. What were we doing there? We didn't belong there with all those dying people!
But it turns out she has a pretty sizable mass in her right lung. It was shocking to hear, but not totally unexpected, as she is a lifelong smoker. She will be having surgery next week to remove the upper lobe of her lung, possibly the middle lobe as well.
I have to say that this is probably the most stress I've experienced ever in my life. Between being out of work, and having hub's dad living with us, and my own medical shit, my mother's diagnosis is pushing me over the edge. I used to turn to food to relieve my stress, but thankfully Atkins has taken that desire from me.  I'm trying to find another outlet.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Linda's Italian Casserole

Oy vey, I had to get tweeky. Decided on Linda's Italian Casserole, a perfectly lovely looking dish from everyone's favorite low carb recipe guru, Linda Sue. But it called for mushrooms, and I didn't have any, but I did have some zucchini sitting around waiting for a purpose. It called for shredded mozzarella, but I had this presliced log, which I decided to just crumble up. It called for Italian Sausage, but I had some precooked Italian chicken sausages taking up space in the fridge. 7x11 baking dish? Ha! Used an 8x8.

What could go wrong???
Add caption

Really? Absolutely nothing! It was a bit of a soupy mess because the zucchini leeched all it's liquid into the dish. And the mozzarella is a little stringy. Had to serve it up with a slotted spoon. But you know what? It's a delicious soupy stringy mess. Both the kiddo and HD like it.

So next time, and there will be a next time, I will salt the zucchini and drain to get some moisture out, and use some ground Italian sausage with a touch of fennel in it.

It's ugly, but delicious

Linda's Italian Casserole

1 pound ground beef
1/2 pound Italian sausage (used two links chicken Italian sausages, cut up)
1 clove garlic, minced (used a tablespoon of the pre-minced stuff)
2 tablespoons onion, chopped (used about a quarter of an onion)
1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced (eliminated, used 1 med zucchini, sliced into thin rounds)
8 ounce can tomato sauce
Salt, to taste
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning, or to taste
4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded, 1 cup
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup freshly shredded parmesan cheese *
4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded, 1 cup
Brown the meats along with the garlic, onions and mushrooms; season with a little salt and pepper. Drain fat; stir in the remaining ingredients. Adjust the seasoning if necessary and put in a greased 7x11" baking dish.
Combine the topping ingredients and spoon over the surface of the meat mixture. Spread evenly with a spatula. Bake at 350ยบ about 40 minutes until the topping is nicely browned.
Makes 8 servings

P.S. Sorry for my poor photography skills, I used my phone!


Welcome to my adventure into low carbing!

Introducing myself, I'm Emily, 32-year-old Stay at home mom (at the moment, been out of work for 6 months). I'm low carbbing to lose weight and improve my health. I'm currently looking to lose about 60 (!) lbs. on my third try on Atkins. Three years ago, I started Atkins, but just couldn't get into the groove and gave up quickly. Two years ago, I decided to give it another try. I stuck with it and lost a whopping 40 lbs in four months. I should have kept it up, but life got in the way. This past year, I was diagnosed with Grave's Disease (auto-immune Hyperthyroid disorder). Yes, hyperthyroid. I am convinced I am the fattest chick with an overactive thyroid on the planet. The only symptoms I had were an increased heart rate and mild (I say mild, my husband may not agree) case of the mood swings. The medication I am on wreaks havoc on my metabolism, making it very easy for me to gain. So a couple weeks ago, I was almost back to where I started weight-wise before loosing. Grr! I knew I had to get back on track. The losing isn't quite as easy this time around, but I have to stick to it, I know this way of life is the only way for my body. 

As per the title, I do have a kid, a seven-year-old daughter who will be enjoying (hopefully!) these low carb meals with me. I figure she gets plenty of carbs with her breakfasts and school lunches, so dinners at home will be strictly low carb. Hubby will be joining us occasionally, but he works nights, so will be MIA for most nightly meals. Hubby's Dad (heretofore to be known as HD, or occasionally PIA) lives with us and will be eating along with us since he will eat whatever I put in front of him.

Cooking is new-ish territory for me, so there will be a few hit and misses, I'm sure. Also, a lot of eating out, just because I love when other people cook for me (not because I get lazy... ok, yeah, it's because I get lazy).

Stay tuned for the good stuff... The Food!