Summer cooking fun!

I’m not ignoring you. I promise. I’m still here. I haven’t gone anywhere – I’m filling my days with recording music, cleaning, keeping busy in the kitchen – and just trying to keep to a regular schedule.

I’ve been toying with low carb recipes. While I’m not full on keto – I have found that I love a lot of the keto friendly recipes. Some new foods I have introduced into my life:

Lettuce wraps – these are surprisingly delicious. I fill them with a variety of things – and they take minutes to prepare.


Summer Lettuce Wraps – low carb

  • Goat cheese – you can eat a lot of cheese with low carb diets
  • Cottage cheese
  • Protein – eggs, chicken, ham or beef
  • Cucumber – sliced into thin pieces
  • Mustard, salt and pepper

I’m telling you – I’m noticing a big change in how I’m feeling in just a couple of weeks. While the scale hasn’t budged – eating these kinds of foods is helping a lot.

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Chicken lettuce wraps

Instant Pot Cooking

I upgraded my Zest Pot to a full on Instant Pot and I made chicken today. I was scared at first but realized how easy the pot is to use. The only thing I don’t like is that you can’t stop the pot and check on the meat – unless you use the Saute feature. I love the sound it makes when the pot is opened and closed – lets you know that it’s closed properly.

It really isn’t intimidating once you get used to it – just have to get know cooking times. And really, we live in a world where I can BAKE a low carb cake without turning the oven on. So, score.


Instant Pot Chicken

  • 1/2 cup of water – base
  • 1/2 cup of chicken or veggie broth
  • 2-3 chicken thighs – defrosted
  • 1 cup of spring onions
  • 2 cups of sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup of frozen corn
  • 1 cup of grape tomatoes
  • Spices; salt, pepper, basil, chives

Throw all the ingredients into the pot and turn your pot on. That easy. Cook on high heat about 20-25 minutes.

I’m learning that you need to let the pressure release naturally. I think this is where I screwed up and was too impatient. Letting the instant pot release naturally helps to keep the meat moist and tender. But the meat really did just “melt” off the with the fork. I was lazy and paired this with some lettuce. Yummy! I think next time a bit of Ranch dressing will pair nicely with this.

I’ve also read that adding some olive oil or cooking oil may help with moisture. But I think I just released the valve too early.

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Three lettuce wraps and chicken and I was full. Still full now. I finished it off with some cherries and delicious. I tore up the rest of the chicken “shredded chicken” and will be using that for my wraps for the week. I can fancy it up with some ranch dressing. And I’m going to try a less spicy version of this dish from Gord Ramsey.

I also saved the left over stock/broth and will use that for a gravy later in the week. Or put the stock in rice and quinoa dishes – it’s so good.

I’ve been watching a lot of cooking videos and just getting ideas for healthy cooking without having to turn my oven on. The instant pot is helping with that. It will take some getting used to. But it’s nice NOT to have to turn on my oven in 30C weather (That’s about 90 for you Americans).

I threw together a “keto strawberry yogurt” cake in the instant pot. I’m a little worried. I think I put in too much almond flour. I had to use regular sugar so it’s not full on keto – but I used:

(I’m a little nervous on how this will turn out)


Instant Pot – Strawberry Yogurt Cake

  • 1 cup of almond flour
  • 1 cup of sugar (keto folks use Stevia)
  • 2 eggs (prob too much — maybe not enough!)
  • 1/4 cup of butter – use butter (coconut oil was bad)
  • 1 cup of vanilla greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups of strawberries
  • 1/4 cup of almond milk or regular milk – this is DELICIOUS
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

So, I made this up on a whim. I threw it in the pot for an hour and then thought that might be too much time. So I released it (it might be dry now) and changed the time to 45 minutes. There’s about 31 minutes left – so I will let you know how it goes.

I will share pictures – depending on how it turns out. I hope it’s good. I just had a craving. I don’t recommend trying this recipe – not yet. I’ll let you know … fingers. Crossed.


UPDATE:

It was awful. Even putting it in a skillet and frying up with some more sugar – it was bad. I think I put in too much coconut oil. I should have just used butter. Don’t make this. It’s bad. Bad. Bad.

Did I mention I knocked over my pepper bottle and it broke all over the floor? It’s been that kind of month – SEE YOU LATER JULY! NEVER WANNA BE YOU!


I’m just trying to get healthy. Eating better. Using more natural products. Keeping to a lower calorie and lower carb diet. I’m aiming for 50-150 grams of carbs per day. Some days are easier. This way I can still eat bread, bananas, and cake. Yum.

A banana is 31 grams of carb. So, that’s like an entire days worth of carbs in one sitting.

I’m back to intermittent fasting too. So yay.

I’m also exercising daily.

My sleep is almost back on track. I’ve been a little rough the last couple of days (hormone stuff, you don’t want the details) – but generally have good energy. I also am good with taking my vitamins D3 and I think that’s helping too. Better mood overall!

But even more good news – I’m seeing my dad tomorrow. We get to watch hockey. And he has air conditioning. I might just move in.


Instagram

I’m thinking of starting a third instagram account just for recipes and food pictures. I realized I wasn’t comfortable sharing my private insta for all the world to see. I locked it down. I’m getting hit with friend requests from gross guys with “private” accounts daily. No thanks.

So, yeah.

That’s where we are this blazing hot Friday night that feels like Saturday. I’m so mixed up on the days.

I’m getting excited about cooking again and trying new foods. I fear my shopping cart right now is all baking ingredients! But hey! At least it’s low carb, right?

Enjoy your weekend! Happy Friday.


Follow this blog for more great summer cooking tips and healthy recipes! You’ve got this!


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