companion blog to the e-book the 24/7 Low Carb Diner

Companion blog to the e-book
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Tropicana Pulled Pork Soft Tacos

So here we have a couple of ingredients which are normally off limits for low carbers. Pineapple. Just a tad for a sweet burst of flavor. And tortillas made with real corn. Amazing. We had these for dinner last night and the guys loved everything. Sweet and savory. Slightly tangy with a pineapple barbecue sauce over slow cooked pork. Oh yeah! I am thinking that this really ought to be two posts, because I have so much info. But one recipe is simply not as good without the other. So, here we go.

I got the inspiration for the Masa based tortillas from a Trim Healthy Mama blogger, Nana's Little Kitchen. She was inspired as well, from a video post from Tisa Fournier on the THM Facebook page. They were, of course, building on ideas from others as well. The idea, as I understand it from Gwen's Nest, the Masa is not just a fine cornmeal. It has been treated with lime (calcium) before grinding, and causes it to have a lower glycemic index. Win! This treated corn actually is even healthier. Now we can't go crazy, but it is not taboo either. BTW,  try Gwen's marvelous corn muffin recipe too. It is excellent. Only wish I had created it! I am so happy to live in a time when we can all share our kitchen adventures!

Speaking of adventure, I did have a little trial and error here, so I modified the recipe a bit. The original recipe calls for oat fiber or psyllium husk. When I tried that, my mixture was much thicker than what I saw in the video. I added water, but had problems with my tortillas sticking to my non stick pans. grr. I tried a new batch, but this time left out the psyllium/oat fiber all together. Just egg white and masa. It worked great. I didn't have a pan I could swirl the batter in. I had the most luck with my old standby cast iron skillet. I simply poured the batter in and smoothed it out from the center in circles using the back of my spoon. Success. If you do want to try the psyllium husk, work quickly. I got called away to the phone and mine set up fast! I haven't tried the oat fiber yet because I found I didn't seem to need it. I think it was because I used egg whites from the shell, not a carton. They seem to be much thinner when purchased in that form.

Tropicana Pulled Pork Soft Tacos

3-4 lb pork roast

1 tsp smoked sea salt
3 x recipe Masa Wraps
2 bell peppers, sliced
1/2 cup pineapple chunks
4 oz shredded  cheddar cheese
1/4 cup diced cilantro
2 green onions, chopped

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup unsweetened pineapple chunks
2 tbsp sugarfree orange marmalade
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp liquid smoke
1/4 tsp glucomannan

Slow cook the roast, sprinkled with smoked sea salt for 8 hours on low. Cool, pour off broth,  and use two forks to shred the meat.  Add a tsp of coconut oil to a skillet. Brown the pork in the skillet while preparing the rest of the meal. Just before serving, pour in half the sauce.

To prepare the sauce, add all ingredients into a blender and puree. Pour the sauce into a small saucepan and simmer on low while you  saute the vegetables.

In a sprayed non stick pan, saute sliced bell peppers and pineapple chunks.

Heat the tortillas and arrange on a plate. They will remain very soft and flexible. Fill each with the pork and vegetable mixture. Top each with a sprinkle of cheese, diced green onion and cilantro. Drizzle with remaining sauce.

Sauce alone serves 8:  18 calories  4 net g carb

8 servings (3 small tacos each)  592 cal.   10 net g carb

 Masa Taco Wraps 
6 egg whites
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp Masa Harina
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
Coconut oil spray

Beat egg whites with water. Stir in masa, onion powder,  garlic powder and salt.

Spray a non stick skillet with coconut oil spray. Heat skillet. Add the batter to the center of the skillet. Use the back of a spoon to smooth it out into a thin tortilla shape. Circling the edges works well. Cook until the top is no longer glossy and the wrap releases without tearing. Flip and cook the other side until just beginning to brown. Remove to waxed paper to cool. Repeat with remaining batter.

Yield: 6-8
Serves 3:  55 calories
                   5 g carb

These are so delicious. Perhaps a bit time consuming, but you can easily break the work into doable chunks of time. The pork slow roasts all day. The tortilla wraps can be made ahead and reheated easily. The tropical flavor is unexpected, and a real crowd pleaser. Give this one a try. Of course, you can use a low carb tortilla from the grocery store, or serve it as a salad. Do what works for you!

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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Fennel and Avocado Salad with Strawberries

It is salad season! It was really warm and windy today. I ate salads for both meals. That signals summer for sure for me. This is an unusual salad, but perfect for summer. It was pretty enough to be featured in the Diner News from April 16--the one with wonderful ideas for shower, brunches and other girly foods. It is pretty, but tasty too. I love the crunch and flavor of the fennel combined with the smooth creaminess of the avocado.

You should give this one a try. It is especially nice paired with baked salmon or a chicken breast.

Fennel and Avocado Salad with Strawberries

Fennel has a nice crunch and a light licorice flavor that goes well with the sweetness of the berries and poppyseed dressing. Beautiful presentation!

1 head fennel (approx. 1/2 lb)
1 avocado
8 strawberries
3 tbsp slivered almonds
1/4 tsp coarsely ground pepper
Prepared Poppyseed Dressing*

Shave fennel into very thin slices on a mandolin or in a food processor.  Dice avocado into chunks. Quarter or halve strawberries. Lightly toast the almond slivers.

Divide fennel among 4 salad plates. Distribute avocado chunks over fennel. Top with strawberries and almond slivers.  Sprinkle with pepper and drizzle poppyseed dressing over the top.

· I like Hungry Girl sugarfree and fatfree Poppyseed Dressing, available at Walmart. I use 2 tbsp per salad

Serves 4:   141 calories  8 net g carb

Of course, you may make your own vinaigrette dressing to replace the store bought dressing in the recipe. A slightly sweet dressing pairs really well here. Use just enough to let the flavors shine through.

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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Mediterranean Feasts and Yogurt Marinated Chicken Salad

So I just got back home from a week at a teacher training seminar at my alma mater. I am so ready to teach Oklahoma history again. I actually learned a lot. Sadly, I was especially reminded of how dorm cafeteria meals never seem to get better as the years pass. I am pretty darn certain that my family ate better this last week than I did, even if it did feel like I was on vacation.

Since last week I had been cooking up a storm for the the June Diner News, I had tons of dishes stockpiled in my freezer. With only hubby home, I made sure to send individual servings of several recipes home with my sweet mom and wonderful middle son. Now that I am back, I have reports that they were wonderful! Nothing spoiled while my kitchen was quiet without me. No, hubby does not share my cooking passion. Somehow he managed to leave some of my prepped food untouched. I don't see take out bags, so I guess he ate a huge amount of peanut butter and celery.

But my mom and Pearson raved about their food gifts. Now I just have to decide with to share with you. Mediterranean food is touted as among the healthiest in the world. We low carbers leave out the grains, but still benefit from the olive oil, fish, lean meats and veggies. Every dish here is a winner. You can find them all in the June issue of the Diner News. Get the 2017 issues for just $6.

Yogurt Marinated Chicken Salad

1 lb boneless chicken breast
1 cup Greek yogurt (add 1 tsp olive oil if using nonfat yogurt)
3 tbsp lemon juice
4 cloves garlic
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp Archer Farms Mediterranean Seasoning
1 1/2 tsp chili flakes
1/2 tsp oregano

Salad:    2 heads Romaine Lettuce
12 cherry or grape tomatoes
1 cup zucchini slices
2 tbsp diced onion
6 Kalamata Olives

Slice chicken breast into large chunks, about 2 oz each. Combine all remaining ingredients. Place chicken into marinade for several hours.   To grill, place on oiled grates and grill until juices run clear. Serve over lettuce, tomatoes, zucchini, onion and olives. Top with Greek dressing. 

Serves 4:  210 calories  12 net g carb (will be lower as all the marinade is not consumed)

The marinade makes this chicken so delish! You can use any Greek Seasoning. I buy  mine at Target. I love the mint and dill flavors. Of course, this chicken doesn't have to be in a salad. It makes a superb entree with roasted veggies too.

Now check out some of the other recipes included this month! Be sure to order your subscription.

Cauliflower Aleppo

Minotaur Steack Rolls with Eggplant Sauce

Caprese Salad in a Jar

Feta Slaw

Gyros Flavored Meatballs

Apollo's Sheet Pan Dinner

Sun Dried Tomato Crusted Fish

Poseidon's Tuna Wrap

Copycat Zoe's Greek Dressing

Zoodles By Zorba Greek Salad


Grilled Artichoke Salad

Zucchini Hummus

Cauliflower Hummus
With no new cookbook out in a while, my Diner Newsletter subscriptions are waning. Rather than purchase a year's subscription, I am changing the order now to the 2017 issues only. I may be phasing out the newsletter. It is a serious amount of work. If you are renewing, I will promise to include a new seasonal issue for the same price. Same new recipes, but seasonal rather than monthly. It will still be a great deal.

24/7 Low Carb Diner News:

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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Sun Dried Tomato Crusted Fish

Most of the people in my family are not big fish eaters. My hubby will tolerate a meal of fish, as long as it is mild, and I serve another favorite recipe at another meal of the day. This one, however, is not your average fish recipe. It is utterly delicious, even for a less than enthusiastic fish eater.

The Diner News for June will feature Mediterranean food. This is definitely in that category. So many provocative flavors, yet so good for your health. In addition to the intense tomato flavor, we get the tartness of lemon and capers, the salty and earthy olives, and the crunch of almonds. Such a winning combination!

Sun Dried Tomato Crusted Fish

1 cup whole olives: a blend of black, green and Kalamata, any ratio you prefer
 ½ cup sun dried tomatoes, drained and  chopped
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp slivered almonds
1 ½ tbsp lemon juice
1 clove garlic
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tbsp capers, drained
4  frozen fish filets (4 to 5 oz each)
 Salt and pepper, to taste

 Preheat oven to 400°F. Place the olives, sun dried tomatoes, olive oil, almonds, lemon juice, garlic, and Italian seasoning in the bowl of a food processor. Process until ground but not completely smooth.  Place the fish filets in a baking dish sprayed or brushed with olive oil and season them with a small amount of salt and pepper. Spoon the olive and sun dried tomato spread on top of each piece of fish, spreading it out over the surface. Divide the capers among fillets.  Bake until fish is cooked through, about 30 minutes depending on the size and thickness of the filet. (Reduce baking time by half if using fresh or thawed fish.)
Serves 4: 330 calories  5 net g carb (7 total carb)

All those classic Mediterranean flavors. Yum. If you need to sub some ingredients, go ahead. But stick with the sun dried tomatoes! Capers would be optional.

You can use any fish, I think. I used a white fish for mildness. But you can get more Omega 3 fatty acids if you choose salmon or tuna. I am personally not a huge fan of some of the other healthier fish--mackerel, herring, trout and you be the judge.

Speaking of judging. Everytime I post a fish recipe I seem to get a battle going between farm raised and wild caught. Please just eat what your conscience tells you, and be happy. Frankly, there are so many opposing views on so many health issues, it is no wonder the average Joe just eats burgers and fries day in and day out. Not that I don't love a good burger.

School is out, but I am still doing grading and clean up. Next week I travel to a teacher conference for Oklahoma History. I do love my history classes the most. I will be dining in my old college dorm cafeteria. I am sure they will not have the good eating I get today with this fish! It will be fun anyway.

Don't forget to order the Diner News. Just $6 a year.

Get more great recipes at the Low Carbing Among Friends Facebook Page:     

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Love the recipes I share on this blog? My ebook helps you plan and prep to stay healthy 24/7.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Korean Kalbi BBQ Sausage Skillet

Never too busy to cook, right? I have been a little overly busy lately. I was a bit behind schedule getting the Diner News out. Saturday was my kitchen day. Then it rained and was so gloomy all day. No photo ops at all. Since I had three grocery stores to visit on Friday, just a little bit of cooking got done then.

So it all fell on Sunday. Let me say, goodbye to my regular prep routine. It was all sausages, all day. Sausages, you say? Why sausages? Well, that happens to be the Diner News theme this month. I really am a fan of sausages. There are so many more healthy options that we had a few years ago. Many are just 1 or 2 carbs these days. And the flavors available now...Wow. I love all the fresh sausage at Sprouts. Good value and 2 carbs per really generous link. Trader Joe's have some fabulous options too. (I do think their sausages tend to shrink more in the cooking though.) I also love the Italian Turkey sausages at Aldi. Warehouse stores have some interesting finds too.

Many sausages are pre-cooked. What time savers those are. Often, I just cut one up into a salad and lunch is prepped and ready to go. The are great for dinners when you just don't want to think about anything else too. Or hot weather, when you don't want to heat up the oven.

If you want the low down on all my finds, you just have to have this month's Diner News. Remember, it is just $6 for 12 months and almost every recipe is new. That is why I am so busy and tired. I cook and experiment a lot for each edition. With no new cookbooks out, this is one of my main income streams. I promise these newsletters are worth the price. (I hear they are worth more)

Here is an interesting dish I created yesterday from an unusual sausage I found at Trader Joe's. Spicy Chicken Sausage: A Korean Inspired Kalbi BBQ Recipe. These are fully cooked, so they are super speedy for a quick stir fry. Especially when you take advantage of TJ's frozen peppers and onions. I also adore snow peas, and those are especially good here! And gorgeous to boot. I used Shirataki Rice for my filler. That did get some conversation at the school lunch table today. I am not so sure anyone else is a fan. I happen to like the rice much more than the noodles. Considering the calorie count, it is a win for me. Try this recipe. It is really yummy.

Korean Kalbi Style BBQ Skillet

2 Trader Joe’s spicy Chicken Korean Kalbi BBQ Sausages
1 tbsp refined coconut oil
1 cup snow peas
1 cup frozen peppers and onion blend
1 tsp minced garlic
7 oz bag shirataki rice*

Slice sausages and set aside. Heat oil in a skillet. Sauté snow peas, peppers and onions. When vegetables are soft, add sliced sausages and garlic. When hot,  stir in Sambal Oelek to taste.   Divide among plates and serve with tamari.  283 CAL 7 NET G CARB

· Substitute caulirice for an extra 2 net g carbs per serving

If you prefer to use riced cauliflower, Trader Joe's is a great place to buy it. Fresh or frozen. Couldn't be easier.

Now check out these other fabulous recipes featured this month:
Beer Braised Brats

Joe's Vino Lover's Bake

The Italian Birdie Bake

Bacon, Brats and Greens

Feta Chicken Sausage Skillet

French Apple Sausage Roast

Garlic Parmesan Sheet Pan Medley

Bangers and Mash

Sausage Alfredo

Man Pleaser Spaghetti Squash

Pressure Cooker Sausage Stack

Beer Brat Cheese Chowder

Don't forget to order the Diner News. Just $6 a year.

Get more great recipes at the Low Carbing Among Friends Facebook Page:     

Order our books at: 

Love the recipes I share on this blog? My ebook helps you plan and prep to stay healthy 24/7.