Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Low-Carb Flatbread

I am so very very excited to share this Low-Carb Flatbread with you all, but I wanted to make sure it was as good as I first thought.  So I have been holding back.  I made it a second time. I froze it. I thawed it and tasted it again.   And yes, it is JUST as good as I first thought it was. Better, probably. In any case, I am going to share it with you and I know you are going to love it.

It is delicious, and nutritious, and a wonderful substitute for any soft and flat naan style bread you may be missing since you gave up gluten or grains… or if you haven’t given up gluten or grains but you just want a low-carb option.

This flatbread has only 2 ingredients and you will be really surprised when I tell you what they are!  It is durable, and pliable. It is chewy and substantial.  You can spread jam or mustard or soft cheese on it and it doesn’t break or tear.  You can use it flat or fold it like a panini bread.  You can use it for savory sandwiches with tomatoes, meats, cucumbers, or cheeses.  You can spread it with peanut butter and honey, or jam and Nutella.  Your choice.  

And the two main ingredients?  Cauliflower, and eggs.  That is it.  Yes, you can add a dash or 2 of salt if you like.  And you could add some Italian herbs for a nice change, or you could sprinkle in some cinnamon if you prefer.  But it is not necessary.  Actually, I suggest you try it plain at first, and then experiment.    If I were making it to use with a chicken filling, I might put rosemary in it.  Or cinnamon and cloves if I were going to have almond butter and strawberries.  You get the idea.

I make it into rectangles so that I feel like I am having ‘bread’. But you could make any shape you like, of course.

Low-Carb Flatbread

Low-Carb Flatbread
Makes 4 servings of 2 slices each.
  • 1 large head fresh cauliflower
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 large eggs
  • Dash of salt
  1. Puree the cauliflower in  your food processor in batches.
  2. Place the cauliflower and water in a microwave safe dish and then cover and cook on HIGH for 10 minutes OR place the cauliflower and water in a saucepan with a lid and boil/simmer for 7 minutes.
  3. Prepare a colander by setting it in the sink and lining it with a double layer of cheesecloth about 16 inches square.
  4. Put the cooked cauliflower in the centre of the cheesecloth.
  5. Set your oven to 350° F.
  6. Bring the 4 corners of the cheesecloth together and twist, enclosing the cauliflower in the centre of the ‘bag’.  Keep twisting and squeezing as much water out of the cauliflower as you can.
  7. Put the cauliflower in a large bowl and break the eggs into  it. Add a healthy dash of salt.
  8. Mix well.
  9. Place mixture onto a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.
  10. Spread into a rectangle about 3/8 inches thick and trim up the edges with spatula.
  11. Bake for 45 minutes.
  12. Remove and cool on rack for about 20 minutes.
  13. Slice into 8 pieces while slightly warm.
  14. Store in fridge or freezer.  Thaw at room temperature or in microwave before serving.
Per 2 piece serving.
Weight Watchers P+ = 2.
Calories 73; Protein 6g; Carbohydrate 8g; Fat 3g; Fibre 4g.

This Low-Carb Flatbread is made from Weight Watchers Power Foods so there is no need to count WW P+ for it if you are following the Simple Start Plan or the Simply Filling Technique.

Apr 19 Flatbread 001
Puree the cauliflower florets into the smallest bits you can.

Apr 19 Flatbread 002
Place the cauliflower in a microwave dish with water and cover, OR cook on stove top.

Apr 19 Flatbread 003
Place double layer of cheesecloth in the centre of a colander in the sink.  After I am finished with it, I rinse the cheesecloth and hang it to dry. I use the same piece several times before replacing it with a new one.

Apr 19 Flatbread 004
Put the cooked cauliflower in the centre of the cheesecloth.

Apr 19 Flatbread 006
 Bring the corners of the cheesecloth together and start twisting.  Be aware that the cauliflower is HOT and the water coming out of it will also be HOT.  Spend a few minutes pressing as much water out of the cauliflower as you can and allow it to drain away down the sink.

Apr 19 Flatbread 007
After you have removed as much water as you can, open the cheesecloth and then place the cauliflower in a large bowl.

Apr 19 Flatbread 008
Add  the eggs and a bit of salt. Mix well.

Apr 19 Flatbread 009
Place the mixture on a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.

Apr 19 Flatbread 010
Spread into a rectangle.  This will later be cut into 8 pieces so that may help you decide on the shape you want.  I use my fingers to press the mixture flat.

Apr 19 Flatbread 011
This is a picture of my second batch after it came out of the oven. I think the dark spots may be where the mixture is a bit thinner. 

Apr 19 Flatbread 013
Allow to cool and then cut into 8 ‘bread’ sized pieces or whatever other shape if you prefer.

Apr 19 Flatbread 014
Stacked and ready to freeze. They do not stick to each other so no need to separate with waxed paper.

Apr 20 Flatbread 001
I made these ham and cheese open-faced and then quickly realized I could fold them quite readily.

Apr 20 Flatbread 003
 And NO they do not taste like cauliflower!  I hope you like them as much as I do.

If you like this idea, I really hope you will share it... by copying and Tweeting this:

Check out this Low-Carb Flatbread via @WeCanBegin2Feed     at http://wecanbegintofeed.blogspot.ca/2014/04/low-carb-flatbread.html
#platecommunity #FitFluential #myffmeal @FitFluential

or by Pinning the first picture. 

THANKS so very Much!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Happy Easter

It’s almost that time of year again… Easter is one of our favorite holidays.  Easter is such a happy and hopeful time of year.  It means Spring, Renewal, Rebirth, Salvation… whether you celebrate the religious aspects of Easter or not, you have to agree that is a joyous holiday.

Happy Easter

I have enjoyed coloring eggs for Easter since I was a small child - first with my Mother and older Sister, and then with my younger Brother.  And since The Captain and I have been together, I have been doing them for him every year. Sometimes on a stove in a kitchen in a house… sometimes on the small propane stove in the galley of our sailboat… both in the marina and out at anchor.

It is one of our mainstay traditions. I color them. He love to eat them!

This year will be no different… I am going to hardboil and then color the shells of a dozen eggs on Good Friday.  He has already reminded me about it.  What he doesn’t know is that this year I bought a little coloring kit at a local $$ store and am going to really do up his eggs purty! 

Apr 16 Easter egg kit 001

Normally I just dye them with food coloring and a bit of white vinegar.  You can read about my technique for hardboiling and then coloring the eggs here.

Colored Eggs for Easter

And last year I also colored the insides of a few, too.  Click this link to read how I did it.

Colored Insides of Easter Eggs

Colored Insides of Easter Eggs 2

But this year I am going to use the dye tablets and stickers that came in the package and make them fancy and gaudy, just for a change.  Wonder what he’ll think when he sees them.

Then I think we will head over to the Children’s Farm to see the baby goats and new piglets.  Can’t wait!  There may even be some new ducklings in the park.

Do you color eggs?  Do you ever do egg hunts with your family?

What is your favorite thing about Easter?

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Peanut Butter, Soy, and Sesame Sauce for Zoodles or Noodles

Ya’ll know how much I love my zoodles.  I have had so much fun coming up with new sauces for them every week or so. I never get tired of them.  Nope, never.  Do you have any favorite foods like that? That you could eat over and over and over and still want more?

Now, I don’t eat peanut butter very often… I really think that almond butter and cashew butter are better for me.  But sometime you just have to have peanut butter in a recipe for the flavor it brings.  This is one of those recipes. I have tried it with almond butter and it is just not the same.

When you put a sauce on zoodles it tends to bring out the moisture in them, so by the time you get to the bottom of the plate, there is usually soupy sauce left.  Don’t waste it… get out your spoon and slurp it up!

Peanut Butter Soy and Sesame Sauce

Peanut Butter, Soy, and Sesame Sauce
Makes 1 serving
  • 1 Tbs peanut butter
  • 1 Tbs tamari soy sauce
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled, smashed and minced
  • 1/2 tsp dark sesame oil
  1. Mix the peanut butter and soy sauce till well-combined.
  2. Add the minced garlic and sesame oil and stir to blend.
  3. Pour over zoodles and toss to coat.
Per serving.
Weight Watchers P+ = 4.
Calories 135; Protein 6g; Carbohydrate 5g; Fat 10g; Fibre 1g.

Peanut Butter Soy and Sesame Sauce 2
Just tossed, already getting wetter.

Since I first came up with this recipe, I have also tried it with a spoonful of fat free plain Greek Yogurt stirred in... it makes the sauce a bit thicker and just as tasty!

What is your favorite nut butter?

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Triple Treat Cookie Bars

Sometimes I like to bake a little something special for The Captain on the weekend.  He has been talking about caramel lately.  I was pretty sure he would be happy with butterscotch so after our 5 km run, and then breakfast and clean up on Sunday morning, we did a little trip to the Bulk Barn. He found some Easter Candy treats for himself and I found some raisins, a variety of baking chips, some gluten-free tamari soy sauce, and some spices.  

Apr 6 Cookie bars 003
Gummy Bunnies and Paste Candy Corns

Ever had lemon-flavored baking chips?  Me neither so I couldn’t resist buying a few… and the Bulk Barn is one of the few places I ever find peanut butter chips so I made sure to stock up on them as well.  I am gonna use some of them to make an ‘icing’ for one of Lee’s Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies later this week.  You all know how much I love those!

But these bars I ended up making for The Captain don’t have either of those baking chips in them… instead I used butterscotch, semi-sweet dark chocolate, and Greek yogurt chips so I call it Triple Threat Treat.  This is an adaptation of an old recipe I have had around for many many years and really cannot give credit to anyone for it. I think it may have even come from my Mother at one point.  That would make it pretty old.

I alter it as I need to, by adding spices, nuts, raisins, different baking chips, M&Ms, and sprinkles, and it always turns out just great!  This particular batter is very plain because I wanted the flavor of the baking chips to be the stars of the show… but sweet spices such as cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and ginger are very nice too if you are using raisins and nuts.

I also use less sugar than I once did so that the batter is not very sweet.  Adjust according to your own tastes... you could use up to another 1/2 cup of sugar if you like.

Experiment!  Use different combinations of chips; add nuts; add candy.  Go crazy!

I purposely did not make these gluten-free so that I wouldn’t be tempted to eat them.  Yeah, I do know my own limits... But you certainly could use a G-F all purpose flour if you want.

Triple Treat Cookie Bars

Triple Treat Cookie Bars
Makes one 9 X 13 inch pan
  • 3/4 cup of butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • dash of salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt chips
  1. Preheat the oven to 325° F.
  2. Cream the butter and sugars together in a large bowl.
  3. Add the eggs, vanilla and salt. Beat well.
  4. Mix in flour in 2 or 3 batches and blend well after each addition.
  5. Add the baking chips and stir to distibute them through the thick batter.
  6. Spread batter in a 9 X 13 inch pan that has been coated with non-stick spray.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden and batter pulls away from edges of pan.
  8. Cool on rack several minutes before cutting.

Yes, you really MUST wait a few minutes before digging in, otherwise you will burn your mouth.

Now this is not a Weight Watcher’s friendly recipe at all.  It is pretty decadent.  But I am gonna share the N.I. with you anyway and you can decide for yourself whether or not you want to make them.  Of course you can always cut them smaller too!

Per serving of 1/40th of recipe.
Weight Watchers P+ = 3.
Calories 132; Protein 2g; Carbohydrate 16g; Fat 6g; Fibre 0g.

Cookie bars 001
See how thick this batter is?

Cookie bars 002
I wet my fingers and patted the dough into the corners.

Cookie bars 004
Still bubbling, just out of the oven. Actually I think my oven must have been a bit too hot this batch cause the edges are so dark.  But The Captain like them anyway!

What are your favorite flavors of baking chips?

Friday, April 04, 2014

My White Smoothie

I didn’t run very much during the month of March.  But I have a very good reason excuse. I had a one-month membership to GoodLife Fitness that I won in a giveaway and wanted to make the most of it so I attended some group exercise classes 3 times a week… Body Pump on Tuesdays, Flow Yoga on Wednesdays, and Body Flow on Fridays.  I did strength training on Sundays and Thursdays with The Captain at home, and we also did a lot of walking.  Before every group class I ran on a treadmill at the gym for anywhere from 10 to 25 minutes, including some sessions of sprint intervals… so there was that!  But overall, running took a back seat… and so when we did finally get out for a 5 km run earlier this week, and again today before our 3.5 km run (after our strength workout) I wanted to make sure we were well prepared with some nutritious fuel.

I like to drink a high protein smoothie before I head out for a run.  I find I don’t need to wait as long after drinking a smoothie before heading out, as I do if I eat something solid.  If I drink a smoothie I only need to wait about 20 mintues to half an hour before I start running. If I eat something solid I need to wait a full hour.  If I don’t I tend to get sick.

This simple combination that I call My White Smoothie is nutritious and delicious. Those are my two main criteria for a pre-run drink. 

My White Smoothie

My White Smoothie
Makes 1 serving
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 ripe banana
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 scoop Fermented L-Glutamine
  1. Mix everything together with your blender and enjoy.
Per serving.
Weight Watchers P+ = 5.
Calories 204; Protein 26g; Carbohydrate 18g; Fat 4g; Fibre 2g.

This drink is a good way for me to get my Fermented L-Glutamine in.  This supplement is flavor-neutral so there is neither added taste nor added color.  I also use a 100% ISO Whey Protein Powder – both of these products are from North Coast Naturals.  You can certainly make it with any vanilla protein powder you like… and  just leave out the L-Glutamine if you don’t use it.

What is your favorite pre-workout fuel?

Are you a high protein smoothie fan?

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

The Story of a Girl and a Brownie

Oh my!  I am so very excited about brownies again!

I love brownies… gooey and hot, right from the oven. I have never been the patient sort, who can wait for them to cool before biting in.  I have had my lips and tongue burned many times over the years, but I don’t learn.

My very favorite brownies in the whole world are No Pudge… you know…the mix in the pink, box with the little piggy on the front.

No Pudge

I used to buy them by the case when we visited the U.S. and could get to a Trader Joe’s.  Yes, they are in Canada too but cost a small fortune here.  Trader Joe’s had them for a very reasonable price and when American friends and family came to visit us on the sailboat, they always brought boxes of No Pudge Brownie Mix for me.

I made trays of them in the little oven on the sailboat to take to cruiser’s pot luck get-togethers quite often. But mostly I made them single serve… with fat free yogurt, fat free sour cream and even with unsweetened applesauce. I was the No Pudge Queen. I blogged about them and ate one almost every day when I had shore power to plug in the microwave oven. Heck, I even had The Captain run the generator when we were out at anchor so I could plug in and run the microwave oven!  I loved my No Pudge Brownies.

Fast forward several years and I found myself no longer able to ignore my gluten intolerance.  I gave away most of the boxes of No Pudge Brownie Mix in my cupboards. The Captain would never have eaten them in front of me, and my heart went right out of making them for other people when I couldn’t even lick the spoon after the batter went into the oven.

Then I discovered a gluten free brownie mix in Bulk Barn when visiting family in Calgary… and can honestly say they are not bad.  Not quite up to No Pudge standards, but certainly a pretty good brownie. I never did get the hang of using the mix for single serve brownies, though.  And then I discovered, through trial and error, that my body is just much happier and functions better when I don’t eat any grains at all.  So there went the gluten free brownie mix too… Since then I have done a bit of experimenting… a girl has to have some chocolate after all… but have never created or found anything that could really replace my beloved No Pudge Brownies.


I am almost jumping up and down with glee as I relate this story!  I cannot tell you how happy I am to have discovered this recipe… just a few short days ago… created and shared by Lee Hersch,  who blogs at the fit foodie.  Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies

I read the post, drooled over the pictures and realized that I had most of the ingredients in my cupboard already, except for chocolate chips (one of my trigger foods so I don’t keep them around… they seem to disappear) and quickly posted and favorited this tweet so I would have the link for reference… my new bookmarking system.


Lee and I exchanged a few tweets over the next several hours… and on Saturday, I finally got to a market and picked up some chocolate chips.. mint flavored. I thought I might be less likely to just devour them cause the only chocolate/mint I really care for is a Peppermint Mocha or those Girl Guide/Girl Scout cookies and I cannot eat them anymore either.

So I made up 2 batches of the single serve Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies that Lee shared on her blog… and after they came out of the oven I put a few more of the chocolate chips on top, and after they melted a bit, spread them around a bit to make an icing… and then I actually let them cool for about 15 minutes before removing them to serving bowls.  I wasn’t really sure how good they would be, so I put some Greek fat free plain yogurt sweetened with NuNaturals vanilla stevia alongside… in case the brownie wasn’t great I could smother it in yogurt… and yes, I know yogurt is not Paleo but I do eat it sometimes.

Honestly, the longer I waited, the more I prepared myself, mentally, to be disappointed.

One bowl for me.

One bowl for The Captain.

First bite…. OH MY GOODNESS!

This brownie absolutely knocked my knee high compression socks off! It is so good. It is every bit as tasty and as gooey as my beloved No Pudge Brownies.  So move over, EVERY OTHER BROWNIE RECIPE out there. This is… BY FAR… the best brownie I have eaten for a couple of years. Truly!  It has made a believer out of me again because I had given up hope of ever eating a really good brownie EVER again.
Lee, you are my hero! I cannot thank you enough for creating this recipe, and eating your mistakes till you were ready to share the recipe with the world. And for letting me blog about it and sing its praises to everyone I know. I am not going to bother with any other single serve brownie recipes EVER again, unless YOU tell me you have created a better one.  I might try it.

Get over to Lee’s blog post and find this recipe and make this brownie for yourself. 

Me, I am heading back to the store to get me some more baking chips… I am gonna try dark chocolate, and maybe milk chocolate and I am also gonna get some peanut butter chips for the melted ‘icing’… Oh yeah. This is my new indulgence and at only 6 P+ (for all of you Weight Watchers who are wondering) why not?  I may learn to eat just half…

Hah!  Who am I kidding?

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 1
I doubled the ingredients to make 2 servings.

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 2
The batter tasted good, but I thought it could have been a bit sweeter and I was a little worried when I put them into the oven.

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 3
Hot out of the oven, I put more chips on top to melt.

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 4
And spread them around to make an ‘icing’.

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 5
My brownie, sweetened Greek yogurt on the side.

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 6
And The Captain’s too.

Double Chocolate Paleo Brownies 7
A closer look.

I would like to share some pictures with you of the inside of the brownie but honestly, after the first taste, I never put the spoon down to pick up the camera.  And I almost licked my bowl… how embarrassing!  No more pictures of this first experience… maybe next one!

Have you tried this recipe yet?

Are you as big a brownie fan as I am?