Food is more than fuel for our bodies. When done right, food nourishes our souls, especially when it is prepared with love, and shared with the ones we love.
Anyone can post a recipe here, via comments. Please remember to label it for Protocol or Maintenance — and to ensure that it is Good To Eat — test it first with your own meter by eating a healthy piece or serving all by itself, then doing PP tests at the 15, 30, 60, 120, and 180 minute mark. Be sure to let us know you did, and that the recipe did not spike you!
Finally, please make sure to use a formal recipe format: ingredients listed first (by weight; your cup and my cup may not weigh the same!), then directions and finally any notes, which should include Fitday or Nutrition Data stats for the entire recipe.
CHICKEN NORMANDY — A Maintenance Recipe by SugarFree — added 1/2/2012
This is one of the few recipes I make where I need to be restrained from sticking my head into the pot and slurping down the entire contents in one go. It’s also a recipe that should be made, if not the very first time, then every subsequent time for company. Because when you take the finished casserole out of the oven, your guests will oooh and ahhh so vociferously their praise will remain one of your cherished memories.
I’m also pretty sure that neither you nor your guests have eaten a dish so rich and unctuous in a long time, if ever. It’s from the school of French Cooking that used to be served in fine French restaurants here, and is still served in the regions of France not yet hit with fat phobia. It calls for cream, really heavy-with-butterfat-cream, and lots of it. Barrels, given today’s skimpy “maybe add a teaspoon of cream to a recipe if you DARE” type of cooking we all now suffer when we dine out. Or, with some of us, in.
Plan to make this dish THE meal of the day. Trust me, served with a simple salad of bitter greens (and homemade vinaigrette) and a slice or two of baguette with butter, you won’t be able to eat another bite of anything all day. But oh, what a day it will be!
Serves 4 – 6
* 3 pounds of chicken thighs, with skin and bone, dried well, sprinkled with 2 T. of kosher salt (both sides), and left to sit at room temperature for one hour. This is known as a ‘dry brine’ and will make the chicken retain moisture while adding a lot of flavor. Do NOT rinse off!
* 3 medium crisp/tart apples — from Granny Smith to Honeycrisp to Gala or Jazz, peeled, cored and finely chopped.
* 9 carrots, not huge or woody, tips and trunk cut off, peeled, and cut in 2-inch pieces.
* 6 T. (3/4 of one stick) unsalted butter.
* 1/3 cup Calvados (French apple brandy). You can use regular brandy if that’s all you have, but a bottle of Calvados is lovely to have on hand for everything from aperitifs to cooking many delicious meals.
* 4 cups heavy cream, cold. Yes, that’s an entire quart of cream for one dish (I did warn you). No ‘whipping’ cream allowed. Not enough butterfat and in fact useless for whipping. It’s kind of like the Ministry of Truth in 1984 — “War is Peace,” etc. Get the real thing — HEAVY cream — at Whole Foods if you can’t find it anywhere else. If there’s a restaurant supply house anywhere near you that sells “manufacturers cream” (a full 40% fat) buy that. Buy it for everything, in fact. I go through six quarts of the stuff a month.
Preheat the oven to 350 F. while you’re doing your other preparation. It takes a good thirty minutes to one hour to truly preheat an oven. Place a shelf in the middle of the oven.
Assemble equipment: you’ll need a LARGE skillet to brown the chicken and reduce the cream as well as a LARGE casserole dish (with a cover) in which to cook the dish. If Santa did not bring you an Emile Henry Flame casserole this year, start saving your pennies. As I’ve written about elsewhere, my Emile Henry collection is my most prized culinary possession, and can be handed down to many generations. The Flame line is made by a family concern in France from special Burgundy clay, and it can be cooked on direct heat, go from freezer to oven, or used in a microwave or convection microwave. It holds the heat so beautifully that everything can be cooked on medium or low, and washes up as if it were teflon, even if you’ve burnt cheese on it. Amazing stuff. But . . . I digress.
1. Into the casserole, toss the peeled, cut carrots. Top them with the chopped apples, toss together and cover. Set aside.
Optional: Should some fresh WILD mushrooms come your way (about half a pound), chop coarsely, then add to the carrot/apple mixture. This immeasurably enriches the dish, so much so that you may be willing to hock some of the family silver to always include it.
2. Melt the butter in the skillet over medium heat until all foaming has stopped. Add the chicken, skin side down for a few minutes until the skin is crisp and golden. Turn over, and do the same to the other side.Remove the skillet from the heat. Remove the chicken thighs to the casserole and set the pieces, skin side UP, on top of the carrot/apple mixture.
3. Pour the Calvados into the skillet and return it to the heat on medium high. With a wooden spoon, scrape all the gorgeous (and oh, so delicious) fond off the bottom and sides of the skillet as the Calvados comes to the boil and reduces. When all the fond is scraped up and the Calvados is reduced to a few tablespoons . . .
4. Immediately pour in the cold cream and bring to the boil, stirring a few times. Once the cream is at the boil, immediately reduce the heat and let the cream boil (more than a simmer) very gently without stirring until reduced by half. This will take from 10-20 minutes. Once reduced, stir in a teaspoon or so of freshly ground sea salt to taste. Stir in freshly ground pepper to taste.
5. Pour the (now) two cups of cream all over the chicken, apples and carrots. Push the chicken thighs down into the cream but make sure the skin (with some cream on them, of course) remains out in the open.
6. Cover the casserole and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the cover and bake another 15 minutes. When you remove the casserole from the oven the cream will be bubbling and have turned a golden brown on top, glorious to behold.
Serve in large soup plates with chicken, carrots and apples — and lashings of the cream sauce. A knife and fork is required but believe me, so is a soup spoon, or you’ll find your guests licking their bowls. They may do that anyway. Enjoy!
Cardoons (also: Cardones) for Maintenance or Protocol by Ariel — added 1/7/12
Cardoons look like giant, pale bunches of celery but are actually the growing stalks of artichokes, and taste like the best part of that veggie.
Though there are some fancy recipes out there, like —
http://giulianohazan.com/blog/the-secret-to-making-cardoons-tender-and-sweet-a-quick-and-easy-fall-recipe — I kept my first try simple. Just butter, salt, and parmesan cheese, because that’s how I like my artichokes. Garlic and lemon would be excellent additions!
— 5 oz cardoons/cardones
— 1 oz butter (on Maintenance or Protocol if you can have that much)
— Scant pinch of parmesan
1. Wearing kitchen gloves for safety (cardoons are related to thistle and so have tiny little thorns), scrape or slice off the edges of the stalks, then slice each stalk into 2-3 inch pieces.
2. Boil gently for 30-40 minutes, until they’re completely soft and tender; this will eliminate bitterness.
3. Saute in butter until they’re slightly more golden and delicious. Salt and pepper to taste.
4. Dust a pinch of grated parmesan over the top. Enjoy!
Notes: After boiling cardoons freeze beautifully, so I recommend picking up more than one bunch and boiling up several servings at one time to save for later. They’re so hard to find in the market that when you see them, snatch them up! The Ocean Mist site has the nutritional information for the Cardoons/Cardones by themselves, but here is the info for my entire recipe (1 serving):
Calories: 232 Fat: 23 g Carbs: 7.2 g Protein: 1 g
Vegetable Template, by Booklover. Cook time about 30 minutes
Weigh and put vegetables in washing water to soak a few minutes. If making a slow cooking sauce for Maintenance such as a reduction sauce, begin it at this time.
In a large frying pan at medium low temperature, weigh and add the following:
* Meat, especially some bacon – (more than one kind of meat is great)
* On Protocol you will probably only be able to use an ounce of bacon.
* Fat – .25 ounces or so on Protocol, much more on Maintenance
* If you can get any beef tallow, lard or duck fat, these are wonderful fats!
* Onions, garlic and spices that do well with long cooking times, like sea salt
* Consult a spice book to identify long and short spice cooking times.)
– Saute everything until the meat is almost cooked.
– While the meat is slowly cooking, rinse the vegetables and pat dry.
– Chop the veggies. Chop first the foods that take the longest cooking times. This would include stems such as broccoli and roots like potatoes. Even kale stems can be eaten.
– Add the stems and roots to the pan. Be sure to add some more sea salt to taste.
On Protocol this is the time to add two ounces of stock. I prefer chicken. Use what you like. There won’t be enough fat to finish sautéing the meal so now switch over to steaming. This step is not needed in Maintenance.
Dry and break up all the leaves and veggies with shorter cooking times. Add this second set of veggies to the pan. Now cover the pan to allow the steam to work. Check on the food every 5 minutes. It usually takes 5-10 minutes to steam.
On Maintenance at this point you could be making a nice cheese sauce with heavy cream and a cheese you like.
On Protocol or Maintenance you could also break the cheese into small pieces and put the cheese in the pan while steaming or sautéing. You could also add the cheese when it’s finished cooking.
Parmesan cheese works well on Protocol because it has more protein. Cream cheese or almost any cheese works great on Maintenance.
On Maintenance at the end of the cooking time, I add lots of butter. Butter and olive oil have low smoke points so I prefer not to cook with them.
There are endless variations even though this template is pretty basic. Hopefully it will be a starting point for someone.
Homemade Fermented Mayonnaise
Unlike regular homemade mayo that only lasts a few days in the fridge, this mayonnaise is slightly fermented and will last for a month or so in the refrigerator. The choice of oil for mayo is crucial. But if you don’t use soybean or vegetable oils (PUFAs) — and you shouldn’t — what’s left?
I used a combo of rice bran (1/4 to 1/3 of the total) and light olive oil, either of which is perfect for mayo. Coconut Oil won’t work because as soon as it gets in the fridge it hardens, and all olive oil provides too much flavor in this case. Mayo should be a behind-the-scenes player, not up front and center.
This can be made in minutes in a food processor that has a whipping attachment. Or in a blender. Or with a stick blender used in a long narrow container. Or with a standing or hand-held mixer — or even with a whisk, though that takes a bit longer. However you make it — once you’ve had it you will never go back to store-bought.
TIP: Buy a plastic squeeze bottle that holds 16 ounces and pour your oil into it before making the mayo. It make adding the oil drop by drop — as must be done initially — a breeze. If it’s dishwasher safe, even better.
** ALL ingredients must be at room temperature!
— 2 cups of good oil
— 2 egg yolks, preferably pastured
— 1 tablespoon kosher salt; more to taste
— 1 teaspoon of dry mustard or Grey Poupon
— Pinch of cayenne or chipotle powder
— 2 or more tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
— 1 or more tablespoons of vinegar. I use a mix of plain, rice wine, coconut, and apple cider vinegars. Make a mix you enjoy, or use just one.
— 1 drop of liquid sucralose
— 1 or 2 tablespoons of whey from yogurt.
If you make your own yogurt, save the whey you drain from it when you make ‘yogurt cheese’. If not, buy a small cup of plain unflavored organic yogurt. Pour it into a fine sieve balanced over a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave overnight in the fridge. In the morning, the whey will be in the bowl and you’ll have delicious ‘yogurt cheese’ in the sieve.
1. If making in a food processor with a whipping attachment, add both egg yolks, salt, mustard, pinch cayenne or chipotle powder, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1 tablespoon vinegar.
2. Process until you see an emulsion form, about 10 or 15 seconds.
3. With the processor running, squeeze in a few drops of oil, drop by drop. Drip in more oil until you see the emulsion ‘taking’ the oil. Then squeeze in the oil in a small stream, not too fast.
4. After half the oil is in, stop the processor and add another tablespoon of lemon juice. With the processor running, add another half cup of oil, then taste for seasoning. Add salt and/or a bit more vinegar or lemon juice or both, plus the 1 drop of liquid sucralose.
5. With processor running, add the remaining oil and the whey. Taste for seasoning and thickness of mayo. If it’s too thick, add more lemon juice or even water if you like. The entire process will take less than 10 minutes.
6. Spoon into a very clean glass jar. Let the jar sit out at room temperature for at least 8 hours, or up to 12 hours. Do NOT put it in the fridge at this point, or the good bacteria in the whey cannot populate the jar.
7. After 8 hours (or overnight) refrigerate.
Almond Bread by Missy
– 1 cup Smooth Almond Butter (100% ground almonds and/or salt; nothing else)
– 3 Large eggs
– 1/2 cup (cooked and mashed) sweet potato
– 1 tsp. baking soda
– Pinch of salt
– Stevia to taste (8-10 drops of liquid or 1/2 to 1 packet of dry stevia) — or — even better: 8 drops of liquid sucralose, or 1/8 teaspoon powder sucralose (NOT “Splenda”). No bitter aftertaste w/sucralose.
– 1 T. apple cider vinegar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
1. Grease a regular-size loaf pan with butter or coconut oil and set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine almond butter, eggs, sweet potato, baking soda, sweetener and salt. Blend with mixer on low speed until smooth.
3. Add apple cider vinegar and blend with mixer on low speed until well combined. Mixture will be slightly thinner than cookie dough.
4. Spoon mixture into pan and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean. Allow bread to cool before cutting.
Nutrition for entire recipe: Calories: 2079 Fat: 167 g Carbs: 85 g Protein: 60 g
This is the most wonderful bread ever! I am amazed that a bread can even be made from those simple ingredients. It is delicious, low carb and doesn’t spike my blood sugar. You can use it just like you would
bread. I make sandwiches out of it, toast it with cream cheese,
use it for grilled cheese sandwiches, and it makes mouth-watering french toast!
Be creative with the recipe and add cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, cardamom, etc. for a sweet bread or add garlic, onion, Italian seasoning (basil, oregano, parsley) and eliminate the sweetener for a savory loaf.
Protocol Pizza by Missy
– 2 Large eggs
– 2 Large whites
– 4 oz. Raw Spinach
-2 oz. Any other raw veggies you like that you can eat on your Protocol (diced peppers or onions, chopped tomatoes, broccoli florets, mushrooms, etc.), Italian seasoning — like basil, rosemary, oregano, thyme
-1 T. parmesan Cheese
Preheat your oven broiler to high. Place an oven safe skillet on a burner and heat the pan on medium heat.
1. Crack two whole eggs into a small mixing bowl. Separate the yolks from the white of 2 large eggs and add the whites to the whole eggs in the mixing bowl.
2. Whisk eggs, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper with a tablespoon of water until well mixed and set aside.
3. Add raw spinach and chopped vegetables to the heated pan and steam by adding a small amount of water. When vegetables are tender, pour whisked eggs on top. Do not stir the eggs. Allow the eggs to settle in pan and cook over medium heat for 4-5 minutes until eggs are mostly set, but still slightly jiggly. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top of the eggs.
4. Place the entire pan under broiler for 2-3 minutes until the eggs are set and top is golden brown. Cut into slices like pizza and pretend it’s the real thing!
Nutrition for entire recipe: Calories: 240.8 Fat: 12 g Carbs: 7.8 g Protein: 25.4 g
Protocol “Mock” Tortilla Wraps by Missy
– 1 large whole egg
– 1 large egg white
– .5 oz. room temperature full fat brick cream cheese
– Large pinch of salt
1. Remove eggs and cream cheese from fridge and allow to come to room temperature.
2. Preheat waffle iron.
3. Separate the egg yolk from white in the whole egg. Place the yolk in a small bowl and the egg white in a medium bowl.
4. Add the second egg white to the medium mixing bowl (reserving the yolk for another use), and beat the egg whites with a mixer on medium speed until stiff peaks form.
5. Add the room temperature cream cheese to the egg yolk and beat with a mixer on low until smooth. Gently fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites.
6. Bake the batter in the hot waffle iron until done. Result: a delicious flat bread wrap. I like to wrap up chicken salad, egg salad or make cheesy quesadillas! Be creative!
Nutrition for entire recipe: Calories: 138 Fat: 10 g Carbs: 1 g carbs Protein: 11 g
Wisconsin Broccoli Cheese Soup — Maintenance Phase — by Trish
• 16 oz. chopped broccoli
• 8 oz. water
• 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules (I use gluten-free)
• 2 oz. chopped onion
• 8 T (1 stick) unsalted butter (I use Pastured)
• 1 oz. all-purpose flour
• 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 16 oz. heavy cream
• 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine broccoli, water, and bouillon. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat; set aside.
2. In a large saucepan, cook onion in butter over medium heat until onion is translucent. Stir in flour and pepper; cook 1 minute. Stir in cream. Bring to a simmer, then stir in the Cheddar cheese until melted.
3. Add in the reserved broccoli and its cooking liquid. If you want a creamy rather than chunky soup, use a hand-blender. Heat thoroughly and serve.
Nutrition Information for entire recipe:
Fat: 300 g
Carbs: 42 g
Protein: 72 g