Monday, April 21, 2014

Gluten Free Breadsticks


bread sticks

Cauliflower is a perfect base for these gluten free bread sticks. In the past,  I've made a pizza crust with a cauliflower base that was outrageous and loved by all. When I saw this idea for breadsticks on Pinterest,  I just knew I wanted to try it. I wasn't disappointed. It's a tasty low carb treat which is perfect for anyone who is gluten free. You can make it for parties, a healthy snack, or a side with soup.

For a party, you could top with sauteed mushrooms, red pepper, or any topping of your choice. They are wide and flat , so they will hold toppings.

Ingredients: 
1/2 medium head of cauliflower , riced ( directions will explain how)
3 eggs, beaten
2 cups of shredded cheese ( any kind)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons oregano ( or any Italian seasoning- rosemary, thyme, etc.)
1/2 teaspoon of freshly grated pepper

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Cut and wash half of a medium cauliflower into large flowerettes..
 Place the cut up cauliflower into a food processor with the blade.
Pulse for a few seconds, and then for another few seconds until the cauliflower looks like rice.
 Pour riced cauliflower into a large mixing bowl and add the eggs, shredded cheese, Parmesan cheese, oregano, pepper  or any seasoning of your choice. ( I don't add salt as the Parmesan cheese is salty)

Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper and half of the mixture into a rectangle. ( you should have enough mixture to make two). Bake for 20 minutes and then remove from oven.
Allow to cool for 5 minutes and then cut leastwise into five strips and then cut each strip in half and move apart slightly.

Raise temperature of the oven to 425 degrees. Return baking sheet to the oven and allow to crisp up for ten more minutes. Remove from oven sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese if desire and enjoy with your favorite marinara sauce.

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cauliflower
place cauliflower in food processor with metal blade

riced cauliflower
Process quickly on and off until cauliflower looks like rice ( a few seconds) 
spread onto a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet  ( recipe makes 2)
Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes

Remove from oven. Will look golden before cutting into strips Return strips
to 425 degree oven for 10 additional minutes to crisp

bread sticks on a plate
serve with a sauce  of your  choice of sauce ( I used marinara) 
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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Why I Stopped Using Stevia

herb stevia in container


Two summers ago I grew a stevia plant in a container on my back deck. I was intrigued by how easy this beautiful herb was to grow, and I was surprised how sweet the leaves actually tasted. I  wasn't surprised when industries started turning stevia leaves into a powdery white substance or liquid.

Although the stevia plant is not bad for you, when the green leaves are processed and converted into a white sweet powder for your morning coffee it takes lots of processing and chemicalizing. I've bought some packages of a brand called Truvia, but I really wondered how good  bad they could be for you.

While doing some research, I came across an informative article on the Dr. Axe website ( same doctor who wrote about apple cider vinegar and weight loss) about the affects of stevia products like Truvia on your health .

As I suspected, anything that is processed to become a white powdery substance will have it's drawbacks. My original concern was that white powder is so refined it usually acts as what is called an "excito- toxin" which excites the nervous system or appetite. In my case, it stimulates my appetite. Not Good for weight loss!

However, Dr. Axe was looking at processed stevia from another point of view. He was asking whether it could actually be unhealthy. It turns out processed stevia that we buy in little packets in the stores are not really healthy after all.

Dr. Axe
      Read Dr. Axe's article for the details: 

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Free Ebook




Who doesn't like getting something for free? The other day I was researching information for writing my first Ebook, and I came across David Gaughran's book, Let's Get Digital- how to self publish and why you should in PDF format.

I have lots of ideas for writing a multiple E books, but I have felt stifled by the technology of how to actually format, organize, edit, publish, get an ISBN number, market etc. In other words: I didn't know what to do! I still don't , but I finally decided to spend the time to learn!

A fellow blogger and author recommended David's book. ( Thank you Vicki Lesage - love your blog)  When I searched for the book, I found that it was available on Kindle for $2.99 or the PDF version for free. Not only was it free, David stated that you could offer the link on your blog for free as long as you didn't do so for profit.

Since I decided I would like to share my E book writing journey on my blog with my readers, I'm going to start with sharing the link for David Gaughran's free PDF download for anyone else who might be interested.

  If you have written an E book and have suggestions, recommended reading, recommended programs to use , recommended editors, cover designers etc. I would be most appreciative of any information you could share with me, as I really don't know much yet..  I ( and I'm sure my readers)  would love to hear about your book and your process etc.. Please leave a comment.

Guest Post Opportunity: If you are a blogger and would like to write a guest post- even better!!
 Let me know by writing me at
vegyid2@yahoo.com

Let's Get Digital by David Gaughran: 
The PDF version is FREELet’s Get Digital by David Gaughran – Free PDF Edition (Updated 19 August 2011)

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Monday, April 14, 2014

Zucchini Noodles in the Spiralizer ( WW)

                             

How did I make these sprialized zucchini  noodles? With an inexpensive tool called a sprializer!

Zucchini noodles are an amazing substitute for regular starchy pasta noodles. It's a very low calorie way of eating a pasta look a like dish . How do they taste? Fabulous!

There are many brands of spiralizers, but the one I bought on Amazon  is very reasonable, and I've been using mine for years  Joyce Chen 51-0662, Saladacco Spiral Slicer, White

                                   
                                  Joyce Chen 51-0662, Saladacco Spiral Slicer, White

Making vegetable noodles is fast and easy and something really different. Once you have a sprializer, you can go crazy making noodles from carrots  , beets into pasta noodles, and so much more. There is something about regular pasta that really sticks to the ribs, literally, but not this zucchini pasta. It's light and delicious and made from the raw vegetable using a simple tool that every kitchen should have called a "spiralizer". I made two different recipes: one with sauce and the other with mushrooms.

                          

Back to our zucchini pasta dishes- The whole family will love these simple delicious dishes, and if you are conscious of counting calories, it is much lower in calories and much more nutritious than regular or gluten free pasta. Vegetables are good for you and most of us need to eat more of them. Why not enjoy them when they taste like pasta!!

Here are some reasons to eat enjoy these fun and very easy to make zucchini noodles
  • If you are celebrating Passover-   these vegetable noodles are a grain free and make a fun meal!! 
  • If you are celebrating Easter, this nutritious recipe will make a light and fabulous side for any holiday meal.
  • If you are vegetarian- Makes a great entree
  • If you are vegan , leave out the cheese and make a marinara sauce
  • If you prefer raw- try my amazing raw zucchini recipe made with sundried tomatoes for the sauce
  • If you are weight conscious- You will LOVE these noodle alternatives- low in calories 
Recipe #1
Ingredients:
1 medium zucchini
1 cup of marinara sauce
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Olive oil or butter

Directions:
Using a spiralizer ( very very easy) follow easy directions to make the noodles -takes about 1-  2 minutes to turn into noodles
In a skillet, add a teaspoon of olive oil or butter and saute the noodles very quickly for about a minute and half ( don't over cook)
Place into a bowl, cover with sauce and cheese.
Eat and enjoy

Or if you prefer You can eat your zucchini pasta raw or cooked. So dig in and enjoy this nutritious and very tasty dish.


Used a spiralizer to make zucchini noodles
I ate this raw without sauteing the zucchini - delicious 
                       

Recipe #2 - Zucchini and Mushrooms
1 package of sliced mushrooms
1 medium zucchini
optional: Parmesan cheese

Directions:
Saute mushrooms in a little olive oil or butter
sprialize the zucchini into noodles
Add zucchini to mushrooms and sautee just 1 minute longer!
Toss with grated cheese if desired and enjoy
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zucchini made with a sprializer
zucchini just after spiralized
since zucchini is a non starchy vegetable it is zero points plus on WW.. so enjoy this healthy lunch.

sauteed zucchini tossed with Parmesan cheese
Zucchini sauteed a little and then tossed with a little Parmesan- Amazing

mushrooms sauteing in a skillet
sauteing mushrooms for zucchini 


sprialized zucchini noodles tossed with mushrooms
toss mushrooms and zucchini together


sprialized zucchini and mushrooms with a fried egg
I added an egg to eat it with.. It made a nice lunch

may be shared on a few of the following blog carnivals

You can check out the spiralizers on Amazon:  Joyce Chen 51-0662, Saladacco Spiral Slicer, White

may be shared on a few of the following blog carnivals