Archive for the ‘Low-carb Lifestyle’ Category

From: Eileen A. McAllister @ Google+
September 21, 2014 at 10:25PM

Unplugging from the Stream

As you may or may not have read below, I made some killer chicken soup today, and had a bunch of chicken left to bag up and use for my lunches over the next 2 weeks.  Quite the coup from $7 worth of rotisserie chickens from which we already had a meal.

I hope everyone has had a restful Sunday, and is ready to get back into the work routine tomorrow.  What do you guys do for a living?

Have a great night, fellow +Plussers, and Ride the Stream while I dream 🙂

Digital art available at

#unpluggingfromthestream #goodnight #digitalart #darkness #night  #stars #galaxy


Sunday Cooking:  Chicken Spinach Soup plus great-for-work extras

I tried really hard to get a good looking shot of the soup that I made, but it just didn’t happen.  I had to settle for the stuff I threw in the freezer.  I was taking the pictures with my phone, and it doesn’t do well up close.  I’ll go grab the real camera next week.

So, the secret to my Primal Sunday meal this week was rotisserie chicken.  I bought 2 a couple of days ago, and we ate about 1/2 of one for dinner that night.  Today, I pulled the rest of the meat off of that one, and all of the meat off of the other.  I used half of that in some Chicken Soup Florentine, and the other half I bagged up in individual servings to take to work.  I have a freezer at work, but you could just as easily pull one of these out at a time to take daily.

For the soup, I, unfortunately, didn’t have any stock on hand, but I had some Knorr bouillon cubes that are pretty decent.  I have turkey broth in the freezer, but I just don’t like it with chicken in it.

Anyway, I sizzled one medium chopped onion in 2 Tb of olive oil, threw in 2 chopped garlic cloves after the onions were translucent, used 8 of the big Knorr bouillon cubes in 24 cups of water, and turned the heat up to high.  Right as the water got to boiling, I added a large bag of chopped, frozen spinach, and turned it down to medium (around 4 on my burners).  While the spinach heated up, I ran to the store to grab a few things, and that took about 20 minutes.  When we got back, I tossed in half of the chicken, and we served it up about five minutes later.  I grabbed rolls at the store for the non-Primal peeps in the house, and the soup was a hit.  It may sound like too much water, but it was just right – you can also use your own choice of stock here, of course!

24 cups of soup, or maybe more like 23 after all that time simmering, and there is not a drop left.  My boys have been eating it all day, which was the point of making so much.  Last week, or maybe it was two weeks ago, I made a huge frittata, and that was the Sunday nom.  It’s really the only day that the kids can depend on me making a meal, so I make a big one that will last all day 🙂

What will I do with the other half of the chicken, I hear you asking.  Well, I keep some Swanson® Flavor Boost® packets at work along with a big tub of dried veggies.  The dried veggies that I get are Harmony House Foods Soup Mix, and I linked the name to the product on Amazon (it’s not a referrer link, but I may consider those in the future).  I imagine that you can get them in local stores, but I looked online first because that’s just how I am.

I also carry in a small box of organic fresh baby spinach or kale leaves and a head of lettuce every couple of weeks, plus I keep mayo in my fridge there along with low carb tortillas.  I might stir in some mayo, and have chicken salad on spinach leaves, wrap the spinach and chicken salad up in a lettuce leaf or tortilla, heat up some of the broth in water and add spinach or kale and chicken, or some of the dried veggies and chicken, or sometimes just eat the chicken salad all by itself.

I freeze the chicken in snack bags … somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 cup each, and I pull out one or two at work depending on what I’ll prepare.  I really like having multiple options at work to keep me from hitting the vending machine out of desperation, or from having to endure yet another fast food salad.


I’ll be whipping up another option later this week, and I’ll let you in on that one as well.  I use the terms Primal. Paleo, and Low-carb, but I am not a purist at all.  I generally avoid grains, but low-carb tortillas, which aren’t Primal or Paleo, are just so wonderful that I can’t see why I should do without them.  I mix 2 Tb of Buckwheat honey with 2 Tb raw apple cider vinegar in hot water every morning, and that’s against the Low carb diet, plus I drink a few beers every other week or so, so I use a mashup of the three and my own judgement 🙂

On exercise, I managed to get in two walks last week, and I used an entire lunch hour to crawl around in my minivan cleaning and vacuuming, so I count that as exercise.  I was hot, and breathing hard, and sweaty by the time I was finished, so I believe that qualifies.  This week I’ll add jumping jacks at least once a day on a break, and wall-ups – either of which can be done in the restroom if you want privacy and don’t have a door.  I’ll see if I can’t fit a walk in every day, and I’ll continue doing chair lifts as well.  I try to do 5 of those several times a day.  I’ll make it a goal to do those 4 times each day, and go up to 10 in each set next week.  So my fitness goals for the week are:

a brisk walk every day at work for 10 – 15 minutes
20 jumping jacks / day when I get up
20 – 30 more jumping jacks on one restroom break per day
20 wall ups a day on one restroom break per day
20 chair lifts every day

It doesn’t sound like much, but I start these things small and work up.  If I try to fit in 20 or 30 minutes of exercise every morning, or every day after work, I just won’t do it.  I know there are folks out there working out or running a couple of hours every day, but that’s just not who I am, and I would be miserable doing the same.  I have too many other demands on my time to dedicate that many hours each day as well, and so fitting a little bit in throughout the day, and increasing that over time until I reach a good level, and it becomes a habit will work a lot better for me.  I AM considering getting a treadmill as I was successful with that in the past, but I haven’t decided.  My last one broke, and I have been hesitant to buy a new one … I’ll make my decision in time to get it for myself for Christmas, so before Thanksgiving.



Today I have wasted a bit of time on social media sites, edited a few photos, cleaned a bit in the kitchen and my bedroom, spoken with a friend, and when finally prompted by hunger, but more because my teenage sons woke up, I needed to make something to eat.  In my bid to cook more meals, but not spend a lot of time in the kitchen because I have a ridiculous schedule, a frittata was the winner for our main Sunday meal!

It actually took longer to type out instructions than the prep work took, so let’s get to what I typed and you can get started …
If you have a mandoline, a nifty vegetable chopper slicer gizmo, or a food processor (does anyone even use theirs?  I find the cleanup such a pain that it just sits on my counter collecting dust), any of those will work to chop both the onion (first to get it cooking while you prep the other veggies) and/or other veggies.  You could use broccoli in this or cauliflower or brussel sprouts (thaw out a small bag or box of frozen and cut them in half if you want to speed up cook time) or spinach or asparagus.  You can change up the cheese, add roasted red peppers, mushrooms, capers, or olives.  You can leave out the onions, use different cheeses, add bacon or sausage or ham or chicken or Italian sausage.  Serve it with sauce or not … it’s so flexible 😀
I usually use:
12 eggs
3 – 4 cups veggies (*unless I’m using spinach and then it’s a full 10 oz container of fresh spinach meaning like a bazillion cups)
2 cups of cheese
3 Tb butter and 3 Tb olive oil, but you could probably get by with 2 & 2
About a cup of meat if using
Sometimes salt, but that’s hardly ever needed with the salted butter and the cheese
Today’s frittata I dub, Italian Zucchini-onion Frittata Extraordinaire 🙂
It has yellow squash in it as well, but I can’t tell the difference once it’s cooked.
In a fit of squashy inspiration, I bought 8 zucchini and 8 yellow squash at the store last weekend along with some Vidalia onions to sizzle with them.  Unfortunately, the inspiration didn’t last, and the squash sat languishing in the refrigerator.  My daughter has eaten a couple raw, so I was happily not facing such a huge pile of potential waste as could have been the case 🙂
You can see from the exchange with her while she was at work today, that she too was concerned about the poor zucchini …
I took out three of the zucchini and two of the yellow squash, and my younger son twirled those through the spiral slicer thingy.  If you don’t have one, you should get one … I use ours to make zucchetti regularly, and I run the occasional beet through it when the mood strikes me.  I chopped up one of the onions while he was taking care of the squash. However you cut them up, you want to end up with about 3 – 4 cups of veggies total*.
Turn the oven onto 375 degrees right about now.
In my oven safe 12-inch skillet I melted 3 Tb of butter and 3 Tb of olive oil over med-high (8) heat, added the chopped onion and sauteed for about 3 minutes, and then turned the burner down to med-low (4).  Add the squash to the skillet with the onions, and turn the burner back to med-high.  Saute the veggies until the onions are translucent and a little brown, then add 3-6 cloves of garlic, chopped.  Stir for about a minute, then sprinkle the mix with 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese.  Cover the top with 10 slices of American cheese, and turn the burner to low.
In a separate mixing bowl, break 12 eggs and scramble them (a Magic/Nutri Bullet works great for this!).  Pour the eggs over top of everything, and stir gently to get the eggs down to the bottom under the veggies and distribute the cheese.  Turn the burner to high, and let sit for two minutes.  Remove the skillet, sprinkle with pepper, and put it in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes, or until set and to the desired level of brown on top.
I heated up some low-carb spaghetti sauce in the microwave during the last five minutes of cooking.
Once you are happy with the top of the frittata, pull it out of the oven, slice into 8 or more wedges, and serve with two or three tablespoons of sauce over top. Yummmmy.
Now that the family has been fed, and I’ve prepared my post for the day, it’s time to take a look at my second discussion question and assignments for the week.  This 3-day weekend is a great opportunity for me to get ahead in my coursework and relieve some stress in the coming weeks.  I’m also hoping to compose a couple of weeks’ worth of posts for my social media outlets, as I’ve let my presence drop more than I like there.
Until then …
So my son walked into the kitchen … peeked into the skillet, and asked what kind of fish. I answered sorta, so he asked, “what?” It’s sorta chicken … chicken piccata without the breading, so it’s Chicken Pisorta, and after tasting it, Chicken Pisorta is now a new family favorite :).
I’m coming back to throw up a quick recipe for this.  Melt 2 Tb butter with 2 Tb olive oil in a skillet on medium-high (5 or 6).  Toss in a bunch of chicken breast tenders or unbreaded breast strips, and stir about until cooked through – about 10 minutes. When cooked, add 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice and 2 – 3 Tb capers, or more if you really like them like we do 🙂
Stir it around a bit, and serve.  Spaghetti squash or zucchetti with a can of Italian or garlic-herb tomatoes as a light sauce goes well with this.  Or some zucchini sizzled with onions would be nice as well.  It’s super fast and easy, and it tastes like it wasn’t!
#chicken #dinner #recipe #capers #butterrules #easy #chickenpisorta #lowcarb #progressivepaleo #hashtagmania

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