Hooray! I have found a way to CHEAT on my diet without technically cheating!
     This whole "no sugar, no flour" thing has been aggravating sometimes. The only sweet thing I eat, usually, is some berries with plain yogurt. "Whoa, there. Calm down! Don't get crazy now!" you say.
     Yeah, I know. I was about to lose my ever-lovin' mind. Then, about a week ago, a friend shows me this recipe. Not sure who is the real author of this treat, but I am happy to pass it along for those of you struggling with gut or sugar issues.
     The sweeteners here are stevia and xylitol. Stevia you have probably heard of as it has been made popular in the last couple of years. It is actually a plant, and the extract can be made into a liquid or a powder. It is 100 times stronger than sugar, so it takes very little to sweeten, say, a glass of iced tea. Not only that, it has absolutely NO affect on your blood sugar.
     Xylitol, too, is a natural sugar found in many different foods, but in such little amounts that it cannot be harvested naturally from those foods. Instead, it is made from birch tree bark. The only side effects that may result from its use are diarrhea and gas. But I imagine you have to eat quite a bit, because I didn't experience any gut problems.
     Anywho, once you've assembled all your ingredients, this recipe takes no time at all to make! And they are soft, chewy, chocolaty deliciousness! Enjoy this one, folks!
----- Jenny


2 large eggs
1 cup raw unsalted creamy almond butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
12 drops liquid stevia
1/2 cup xylitol
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon buckwheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup shredded dried (unsweetened) coconut, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Beat eggs in an electric mixer in a medium bowl. Add the rest of the wet ingredients. Do not mix until you have added the sifted dry ingredients.

Add dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Then combine with wet ingredients and blend with electric mixer until well mixed. Use a small scoop (I used a 2-teaspoon spoon) and drop dough onto paper. 

Bake for 10-14 minutes, and allow to cool. Best served hot out of the oven or cold out of the fridge!

     So far, I've lost seven pounds. I'm not too frustrated, I guess, because this is a healthy way to lose it. I'm on my way, and by the end of the year, I hope to have completely reached my goal. That means I will have lost 54 pounds and likely 8-10 dress sizes. I'm embarrassed to admit that I have to lose THAT MUCH, but whatever. At least I'm doing something about it!
     I have found that cabbage is an awesome diet aid. It is bulky, so it fills up your tummy. It's high in fiber. And it helps me drop the weight more easily. 
     For this recipe, I had some kale that I needed to use. Kale... Kale... cole slaw... KALE SLAW! So crunchy, and healthy, too, because I used my homemade mayo recipe. A great raw food, diet food, side dish, BBQ side, gluten-free, YUM!

--- Jenny


2 cups kale, stemmed and finely chopped
2 cups red cabbage, finely shaved or sliced
1/2 medium onion, diced
1 celery heart (the inner stalks, including leaves), chopped
1 fresno pepper, seeded and diced
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup homemade mayo or more to taste (recipe below)
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper to taste
other herb or spice to taste (I used a Thai blend)

Combine and toss all ingredients. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Fresh Mayonnaise:
     1 egg
     1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
     3 tablespoons lemon juice
     1/2 teaspoon salt
     1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
     1 cup unrefined sunflower seed oil (or olive oil)

     In a blender or food processor, blend egg, lemon juice, salt and pepper for about a minute. While processor is still running, stream oil until mayonnaise thickens. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate to set. 
     So pretty, isn't it? This was actually the result of my need to use a few things in the fridge that might otherwise go bad if I didn't figure something out... soon!
     I've been on a Candida-killing diet for the last three weeks (without cheating - YAY, me!). That means no sugar, no grains, no alcohol, no vinegar. No sugar means none. The only thing I can use is stevia, because it actually comes from a plant. No grains means: no flour, no corn... That's a hard one.The vinegar might sound easy, until you realize that vinegar is in almost EVERY salad dressing, and that's pretty much all I eat! Salad! Luckily, I CAN have organic apple cider vinegar, so I make do with that.
     Well, mayonnaise and mustard both have vinegar, too, so I have to make my own with lemon juice. So I used my mayo recipe in this slaw. If you choose to remake it, you can use regular mayo with probably 1-2 tablespoons of lemon juice and a pinch of ground red pepper.
     The flatbread recipe came from a need for something carb-y, but without wheat or corn. It's very simple!
     --- Jenny


     2 tuna steaks, approximately 6 ounces
     olive oil or grapeseed oil

In a skillet over medium heat, warm 2-3 tablespoons of oil. When it is hot, sear the tuna by cooking 3-4 minutes on each side, then make sure to sear the edges. Salt and pepper to taste.

Asian Slaw:
     1/2 head purple cabbage, thinly sliced
     2 medium carrots, grated
     1/3 cup diced onion
     1/2 -3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
     2-3 tablespoons ginger, minced
     2/3 cup fresh mayonnaise (recipe below)
     1 teaspoon Asian five-spice seasoning
     1/2 - 3/4 tsp ground red pepper     
     salt to taste 

Gather all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Refrigerate before serving.

Fresh Mayonnaise:
     1 egg
     1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
     3 tablespoons lemon juice
     1/2 teaspoon salt
     1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
     1 cup unrefined sunflower seed oil (or olive oil)

     In a blender or food processor, blend egg, lemon juice, salt and pepper for about a minute. While processor is still running, stream oil until mayonnaise thickens. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate to set.

Spinach Almond Flatbread:
     2 cups almond flour
     2 eggs
     1 tbsp olive oil
     1 tsp salt
     1 packed cup chopped fresh spinach

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients well. Flatten (to about 1/4") onto a well-greased cooking sheet. You may have to wet your hands to be able to flatten without the batter sticking to your hands. Bake about 15 minutes.     
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Omelet with Fresh Spinach, Sauteed Red Peppers & Onions, and Freshly-Grated Parmesan Cheese

     Eggs are so versatile. Pair them with herbs, vegetables, or the ever popular bacon. Make them into a quiche or frittata, scramble them, fry them, or do what I do, and make omelets out of them. 
     Some people add milk to their eggs, thinking this makes them fluffier. Honestly, I don't see a difference. I set my heat to medium (about a "5" on the dial), and I lubricate the pan with butter or coconut oil. 
     Then I pour the scrambled eggs (usually 3 of them) into the pan and immediately put the lid over the top. This way, the top cooks a little while the bottom cooks. When the edges come away from the pan, I get my spatula and flip the omelet to let the top cook the rest of the way, only about 10 seconds longer. Transfer to a plate and add shredded cheese, or whatever you want as a filling. Some people prefer to add things to the eggs themselves, but I find it easier to add other ingredients after the eggs are cooked. The only reason I would veer from this is if I wanted to add herbs. The heat brings out their flavor.
     Ever wonder if brown eggs are better than white ones? There's no difference whatsoever. The reason some eggs are brown simply lies with which chicken laid them. Some chickens lay white eggs, some lay brown ones, and some lay green ones! I own chickens that give us all three colors! Very cool.

     My egg-buying advice: get your eggs from a local producer who can tell you what living conditions are like for their chickens. Mine are relatively free range. That means they're allowed out of their cage/roost to feed on insects. When they stay in, like in bad weather, they eat regular chicken feed. So not completely organic, but as close as you can get.
Otherwise, I suggest organic free-range eggs. But what's the difference between that and "cage free"? "Cage free" just means that the chickens were not kept in battery cages. 

"Free range", by USDA definition, only means that the chickens have access to the outside, not that they are ‘grown’ outside.
Straight from the horse's mouth, the USDA trade guidelines for the free range designation (section 10.5, page 13) say: " The birds are raised in heated and air-cooled growing houses with access to the outdoors…"

Wow. According to this, my chickens are going over and beyond their guidelines. Anybody want some eggs?

Until then, you have some educated decisions to make!
Omelet with Sauteed Onions and Garlic, and a Spinach, Basil & Cashew Pesto
Omelet with Goat Cheese, Capers, Tzatziki Sauce, and Diced Tomatoes
     Before today, I had never sampled a blood orange. I carefully pulled back the peel so as to not let any of the juice escape before I had my first taste. Somehow I knew this would be special. I pushed my finger into the center to separate the sections, and pulled the orange apart into its two halves. Wow. It looked like it was infused with wine, it was such a rosy red inside. Then, I bit into a section and let the juice burst onto my tongue. I let it swim in my mouth, savoring its richness... Ahhh...!
     Such was my first taste of the blood orange. No wonder people have been going crazy over this thing! I immediately thought of all the things I could make with this common delicacy: salad dressing. Dessert. Margaritas! 
     Well, it was lunchtime, so, salad dressing it is! Online, there are countless dressings, but none that are creamy. So I devised my own. Next time, (which will be very soon!) I'll make a larger amount and add more yogurt. Maybe even make it Greek yogurt.
     Enjoy this one, guys! DEEEE-licious!


2 cups chard, stemmed and torn in bite-sized pieces
2 cups baby spinach
1/2 cup sliced cucumber
1/4 cup tablespoons diced onion
1/2 cup diced red pepper
8-10 ounces pan-seared chicken tenderloin
(2 tbsp olive oil in frying pan -- approx. 4-5 minutes per side)

juice of two blood oranges, about 2/3 cup
1/4 cup yogurt, Preferably Greek yogurt
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/4 cup olive oil

In a food processor, blend oranges, yogurt, garlic and cilantro. Stream in olive oil as processor runs to acheive desired consistency.
     Here we go! While you can still count on me to post things on the See Our Latest page, I have dedicated space here to post great "diet" recipes, the first of which is Baked Eggplant Chips. As is the case with most of my inventions, I was disappointed to discover that this was not my invention. Shoot! Oh, well, they're pretty tasty anyway. They can be accompanied by a low-fat dip, maybe yogurt-based, and I think I'll try that next time. But this one includes a pesto of spinach, cilantro (great for detoxing) and cashew. I actually felt like I was cheating, this was so good!
     One suggestion, I used a regular eggplant, so some pieces were really big. For a more uniform size, I would suggest a Japanese eggplant, and you can even use this recipe for zucchini!

Baked Eggplant Chips

1-2 eggplants, preferably Japanese variety
olive oil
sea salt

Slice eggplant, with a mandoline or other slicer, into 1/4" thick slices. Brush lightly both sides of each slice with olive oil. Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet, and place slices on sheet. Bake at 400 for about twenty minutes. About ten minutes in, flip slices over and continue to bake until browned.

Pesto (pictured above): 
2 cups fresh spinach 
1 cup fresh cilantro 
1/2 cup cashews 
1-2 cloves garlic 
olive oil

Process spinach, cilantro, cashews and garlic in a food processor. Stream olive oil until desired consistency.
     I began my WEIGHT-LOSS WAR ten days ago, and I've only lost four pounds. I cheated yesterday and gained a pound! Arrrgh! That'll teach me to eat a Mexican sope. And chips and salsa. And a piece of cornbread... Sheesh.
     I usually have one day where I absolutely lose my self-control and just carb out. Unfortunately for me, that's what my body loves the most. It's more of a love to hate. Or hate to love. Whatever. All I know is I have 50 pounds to lose, and it looks like it's going to be a slow row to hoe. 
   So here we go. I will limit my dairy and meat, and try, TRY, to cut out carbs altogether. I will allow myself the occasional brown rice, and if I happen to make sweets, I get two bites and the rest will be given away!

     As for supplements and the like, here will be my regimen:  
          --- Oil Pulling - something I recently discovered that helps me wake up and detox. And I received a compliment, after doing 
             it only four times, that my teeth were whiter and prettier!
          --- Acidophilus, the potent stuff. Because everybody needs a healthy colon.
          --- A daily dose of powdered greens, including alfalfa and kelp. It looks like pond scum, but it doesn't taste bad, and it's   
               great for energy and as a raw food source.
          --- Kombucha: a fermented drink that contains a great source of probiotics. The more, the better. I make my own at home, 
             so cost is soooo affordable!
          --- A drink of fresh vegetable juices, namely, carrot, celery, green apple or pear, lime and a bit of ginger, because I like    
            things SPICY! :D

Aside from that, I get vegetables and meat. It's a good thing I'm creative, because that could get pretty boring PRETTY fast. 
Ugh. Now I'm bored. 
     Anywho, the purpose of this page is to document my story. I think it'll keep me motivated. Here goes!

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