Homemade Andouille Sausage

And then, there would be me, huffing and puffing away with my manual Corona meat grinder! lol

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0sBHwLO7jw&feature=share&list=UUCg7p68j9fDXQvMU2l6Tn9A

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Green Chile Chorizo

We used to eat store-bought standard Mexican chorizo until something in it stopped agreeing with us.  Well, I just stumbled on this recipe for Green Chorizo that looks fantastic!

Green Chile Chorizo

Please go to the above link for directions and video:

1 large fresh poblano chile
1 or 2 fresh serrano chiles, stemmed and roughly chopped
1 medium bunch of cilantro, tough lower stems cut off, the leafy part roughly chopped
1 1/2 pounds ground pork (you’ll need pork that’s a little fatty – 25 to 30% – and preferably coarsely ground)
3 tablespoons spinach powder (available on the internet)
2 teaspoons salt

Me And Diabetes

My friend’s mother was just diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.  I wanted to bestow my wisdom (yeah, I know) on him so that perhaps it could help during this transition.  Then, I realized I had never really shared my experience with anyone (well, not too many).  So, here I am.

I don’t actually remember when I was diagnosed (last year or the year before).  What I do know is I had been having health problems for years that I kept attributing to other factors, illnesses, conditions, whatever I could find via Google.  I experimented with different treatments (yes, acting as my own doctor because not one of these problems I felt was important enough to see a doctor about).  Then God thumped me on the head, like He has so many times in my life.  I developed a severe allergy to seafood.  It is so severe now that I can’t even go near an aquarium (you should have seen me at Bass Pro Shops … that’s how I found out about that one).  So, Emergency Room, followed by a visit to my family doctor, which included all the tests you can imagine when you have never (and I mean never) had a thorough yearly exam.

That’s when I was hit with it and now, looking back over my life, I think I had type 2 diabetes for at least 21 years (well, 21 years this past February).  I was thirsty all the time.  If I did not have something to drink at all times (I couldn’t go more than 20 minutes without drinking something) my mouth and throat would become so dry I would cough and have a hard time breathing.

I couldn’t go more than an hour or two (two was pushing it) or less time if I was doing heavy manual labor without eating.  If I did, I would get the shakes and feel very weak (sometimes I felt like I was going to pass out).  I describe the start of it like this, “It feels like my stomach is shaking, like it’s cold”.  After meeting, then marrying my husband, I always felt self-conscious about raiding their cupboards so we would be there for hours before he would force me to eat something (that’s one of the times it felt like I was about to pass out).

Cuts and scrapes (especially on my hands/fingers) became infected quickly and took forever to heal once the infection was dealt with (sometimes, soap and water just don’t work like they should).  Even though I was always diligent (too much information for some but I’m a female … what are you going to do?) I got yeast infections all the time.  Before being diagnosed, I thought I had just developed allergies to certain ingredients but after changing everything, nothing worked.  And even though I can’t say they are directly related to the diabetes, I got bladder/kidney infections at least once a year.  I say directly related because my view of my body is, when one thing goes wrong, a lot goes wrong at the same time.  It’s like my body has A.D.D. (it can’t really focus on one thing while there are too many distractions).

So, when I was diagnosed, I did exactly what my doctor said (but, as always, took it to the extreme).  I took my Metformin and Glucophage.  I regularly cut myself (tested my blood sugar).  Instead of living on sugar (sugared coffee all day during the winter and sugared tea and soda during the summer) I went sugar-free everything (and let me tell you, Sugar-Free Sees Candies are not even worth the bother … yuck!).  I even embarked on the 1970’s version of Atkins (as in fats, meat and salad).  After 4 months, I was off all my medications.  Due to my diet and the medications, my blood sugar would drop so low I would have to scarf sugar to bring it back up (fruits and juices didn’t work fast enough).  As long as I followed that sugar intake with a slower digesting carbohydrate (or even just some straight meat), I wouldn’t experience a sugar high, then crash.  It wasn’t easy.  I actually cried one night because I could smell the Cheez-Itz my step-daughter was eating.

Due to other health issues (not mine) I had to abandon the die-hard Atkins way of eating.  Although my blood sugars have been normal for at least a year, I am always watching for the signs to come back.  Last week I got REALLY thirsty so I freaked out.   I checked my blood sugar and it was normal.  I guess it was just the 100+ degree weather and I was legitimately thirsty!  🙂  I just eat better, still focusing on proteins (not having a pile of toast for breakfast like before) with a side of good carbohydrates and a sprinkling of bad if I still want them.  I think, as in all things, the key (in my case) is simply moderation.  If I were to lose more inches, I would be better physically but that’s not my main focus (since this saga began, I have only lost roughly 10 pounds but I have lost 9 inches off my waist alone).  I actually squeezed my rear into a size 14 pants yesterday (it wasn’t pretty … I looked like a mushroom) but I could breathe AND sit without busting out the seams!

My point in all this is, it’s not the end of the world.  It may feel like it (especially in the beginning when you have to give up all that you have loved to eat for so many years) but you will eventually learn to appreciate food again, I promise.

Cream of Broccoli Soup

It’s that time of year: Spring and the run for trying to figure out different ways to serve/preserve vegetables!  I love this time of year, when I am no longer freezing but not frying out in the sun yet.

This recipe can be adapted to just about any vegetable combination.  I’m going to make Cream of asparagus soup with maybe some leftover peas thrown in (I’m not sure if the peas will detract from the flavor of the asparagus but I’ve been craving peas lately).

It’s simple and basic.  Enjoy!

Cream of Broccoli Soup via Hallsys Kitchen

 

Some Great Links

I have about 30 tabs open, trying to remember to post information (or save recipes) so here are some of the links:

Great Low Carb recipes

http://www.sugarfreesheila.com/RecipesPage.html

Here are some Diet/Low Carb recipes

http://whatscookingamerica.net/RecipeIndexDiet.htm

This one especially spoke to me (*grin*):

http://whatscookingamerica.net/Beverage/MochaShake.htm

Check out these Southwestern Recipes:

http://whatscookingamerica.net/RecipeIndex_Southwest.htm

My Whole Foods Kitchen.com (I love this site and all her videos on You Tube):

http://3dhealth.net/

Here’s one that has Old Recipe Books:

http://oldrecipebook.com/

And, thanks to Anthony Bourdain (“No Reservations”), here where you can order the book “Foods of the Azores Islands”:

http://foodsoftheazoresislands.com/

Low Carb Food Storage

Well, since my switch in eating, I’ve been thinking about all of my food storage.  Boy, I have some adjustments to make!  Flour, sugar, jams and jellies (sugar-made), beans, white rice, oats, etc.  So, I went searching for suggestions online.  I found some great links to check out:

I don’t usually like “about.com” articles, this is a good basic one:

http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/whattoeat/a/lowcarbemergencyfood.htm

A One-Month Long-Term Food Supply from a Low-Carb Perspective from Claiming Liberty:

http://claimingliberty.com/2011/08/25/a-one-month-long-term-food-supply-from-a-low-carb-perspective/

I do not, in any way, shape, or form support HCG but this is another good article about disaster preparedness and a low carb diet:

http://www.myhcgjourney.com/Disaster_Preparedness.html

Here is a video about dehydrating spaghetti squash:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKwopbMrvAg

Paleo Prepper: I have barely looked through this website but it’s intriguing!

http://paleoprepper.com/

Here’s a post by The Low Carb Prepper (good stuff):

http://modernsurvivalonline.com/guest-post-the-low-carb-prepper/

Duh, I didn’t even think of dairy!  “Do you store foods you shouldn’t?”

http://dfwpreppers.com/do-you-store-foods-you-shouldnt/

Here’s a thread at The Survival Podcast Forums:

http://thesurvivalpodcast.com/forum/index.php?topic=20965.0

Roasted Peppers In Oil

Well, I have finally concluded that my peppers are not going to produce anything this year.  It is now September 11th and they STILL only have their second set of leaves.  So, I had to purchase some.  What I usually do is dice them, lay them on a cookie sheet, and freeze them.  Once frozen, I place them in a Ziploc bag so I can just grab a handful anytime I need some.  This works especially well for breakfast, when I’m usually starving and just trying to throw some quality food together.

This time, I’ve decided to do something different.  I’m making roasted peppers in oil:

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/roasted-peppers-in-oil-peperoni-arrostiti-sotto-olio/detail.aspx

I’ve read of people doing this with vinegar but since my husband doesn’t like vinegar (and that might clash with whatever I am cooking) I will leave that out.  I’m also going to leave out the salt.  That way, anyone who needs salt can just sprinkle some on themselves.  I read somewhere that if I want to store these, I can put them in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes to seal the jars.

So, once hubby is fully awake and can fiddle with the electric ignitor, I’m going to broil 4 pounds of mini bell peppers!  I can’t wait!  🙂

Serving Size    1/6 of a recipe
Servings Per Recipe    6

Amount Per Serving
Calories    270

Total Fat 28.2g, Sodium 196mg,** Potassium 132mg, Total Carbohydrates 4g, Protein 0.7g

Chile Rellenos

This is my mom’s recipe for chile rellenos.  She usually uses Ortega canned chiles but these are so good with freshly roasted and peeled peppers!

Chile Rellenos (4 rellenos, serves two)

  • 4 Anaheim chiles, roasted and peeled (canned Ortegas work OK)
  • 3-4 oz. Monterrey jack cheese (or whatever kind of cheese you prefer)
  • Red Chile Sauce (or canned chile enchilada sauce)
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • a pinch of salt

In a large frying pan, heat  approximately 1/2-inch of oil on medium high.

Remove the chiles from the can.  Rinse and dry thoroughly (if using freshly roasted chiles, be sure to thoroughly dry them).  Stuff the chiles with the cheese.  Beat the whites of the eggs until stiff but not dry; mix salt and yolks, then fold in the yolks, being sure not to deflate the egg whites.

Dip the stuffed chile in the egg mixture, ensuring it is completely coated.  Slowly add to the hot oil.  Cook on one side until lightly brown, then turn.  Cook for another minute or so.  Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.  To serve, place on a plate and spoon warm Red Chile Sauce over each relleno.

To make these extra wonderful, cube some pork roast, brown lightly, then stew in the Red Chile Sauce.  Spoon this over the rellenos.

Nutrition Facts

Calories    233.1, Total Fat    14.6 g, Cholesterol    267.7 mg, Sodium    458 mg, Total Carbohydrate    11.3 g (Dietary Fiber    2.8 g, Sugars    4.3 g), Protein    14.7 g, Vitamin A    75.7 %,  Vitamin C    16.8 %,  Calcium    3.5 %

Red Chile Sauce

 

This, though we usually use canned (La Victoria), is what we use for enchiladas.  We always have.  So, when I was looking for an actual recipe to make our own and most of the recipes out there call for tomato sauce I just about flipped out!  LOL!

http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_circulars/Circ533.html

Red Chile Sauce

Makes about 1 cup

Red chile salsa (sauce) can be made from dried chile pods.

Select dry chile pods in optimum condition. Do not use pods with signs of mold, insect infestation, disease, or decay. (Chile pods from ristras sprayed with plastic, shellac, or insecticide are not edible and are to be used for decorative purposes only.)

Remove stems, seeds, and yellow veins from chile pods. Twelve to 14 large chile pods yield about 1 pint of chile puree. Leave the veins if a more pungent product is desired. Wash pods in warm water, lifting pods out of the water and changing the water several times.

Place washed chile pods in a pan and cover with warm water for 1/2-1 hour to allow pods to rehydrate. Add warm water as needed. Simmer pods and water for 10 minutes. Pulp should be soft, thick, and separating from the skin. Place chile pods and some of the water in a blender and blend until a smooth puree is obtained. Run puree through a sieve or colander to remove any unwanted peeling bits.
Measure:
1 c. chile puree
1 c. water
1 minced garlic clove (optional)
1/2 t. salt
2 T. vegetable oil
1/2 t. crushed oregano leaves (optional)

In a sauce pan mix chile puree, water, garlic, salt, and fat. Simmer gently for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add oregano and simmer another 5-7 minutes. This yields 1 pint or enough for four servings of enchiladas of three tortillas each.  Store left-over salsa or puree in the freezer for later use.

Nutrition Facts

Calories    54.2,  Total Fat    5.1 g,  Sodium    458.5 mg,  Potassium    4.1 mg,  Total Carbohydrate    2.1 g ( Dietary Fiber 0.3 g,  Sugars 0.4),  Protein    0.2 g, Vitamin A    18.8 %, Vitamin C    3.3 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Krazy Salt and Atkins

Yesterday I was on a mission.  After going to 6 different thrift stores, I found the 1972 edition of Dr. Atkins Diet Revolution (actually a reprint from 1990 but NOT updated).  I have been so curious exactly what the differences are between the original way of eating to what is being taught now.  So far, the difference is night and day.  I will probably do a post comparing and contrasting the two after I finish reading the 1972 version.

Well, I was flipping through the recipes in the back of the book and one ingredient smacked me in the head: Krazy Mixed-Up Salt.  I have never heard of this and looking online, I still really don’t know what it is.  From what I can gather, it’s basically Seasoned Salt with more seasonings.  Since I have never heard of Krazy Salt before I can’t judge whether this is a good substitute but it sounds awfully good to me!

http://www.food.com/recipe/Crazy-Salt-191455

Ingredients

  •  1/4 cup sea salt
  •  1 teaspoon dried dill weed
  •  1 teaspoon black pepper
  •  1 teaspoon onion powder
  •  1 teaspoon garlic powder
  •  1/4 teaspoon curry powder
  •  1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  •  1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika or 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika or 1/4 teaspoon hot paprika
  •  1/4 teaspoon sage
  •  1/4 teaspoon oregano
  •  1/4 teaspoon marjoram
  •  1/4 teaspoon parsley
  •  2 teaspoons lemon zest or 2 teaspoons orange zest or 2 teaspoons lime zest

Directions:
Blend all ingredients in your food blender or coffee grinder. Blend until it is a fine powder.