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The Shogun

The Monastery Kitchen

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I've had a request for a discussion of the Fathead dough that's making the rounds of the keto/LCHF circles. It's also gluten-free, fast, easy, fairly cheap, and a reasonable approximation of most things I've used it to replicate.

 

It seems to be important to use the part-skim cheese. I haven't experimented, but that's the consensus. It's probably a protein content thing.

 

There are a bunch of recipes out there, but I'm a bear of little brain, so I used the very simplest I could find, which was something like a cup of shredded mozzarella and, I don't know, half a cup of ground flax seed. I only made that one once or twice, because I'm just tired of the taste of flax. So what I use now is 3/4 cup of cheese (just because I use the one from the rice cooker, but 1C is probably the official measurement) and 2Tb of coconut flour. This makes a pretty generic white baked good. Melt it together (30 seconds in the microwave, maybe twice), knead it, and you've got an edible Play-Doh to make things from. The generic cooking instructions after that are ten minutes at about 400F, but it might take a bit longer for certain things.

 

What I have actually made:

  • Pat it down to a quarter inch, and you've got a pizza crust. Prebake, then top and rebake.
  • Add sesame seeds to the dough, pat down to a quarter inch, and you have crackers.
  • Pat down to a quarter inch and wrap around ham/cream cheese/green onions, and you have a hot pocket/pasty.
  • Pat down to half an inch, and you've got pita. It puffs up as it bakes, and holds that shape.
  • Pat down to an inch, and you've got a roll or biscuit. This one might need some extra time, I don't feel I've nailed the perfect texture, so it might be a little thick for ten minutes. But it's close enough.
  • Add sweetener to dough and shape into freeform handheld tart crust. Fill with chunky cooked apples, and you have an apple tart.
  • Add sweetener to dough (or not, if your filling is sweet enough), rough shape a pastry, and top with sweet vanilla cream cheese, and you have a cheese danish.

Basically, shape it into a thing and it magically becomes that thing. Somehow everything comes out magically golden brown and perfect. (I did fail at cinnamon rolls, but I was doing to many experimental things with it, so that was on me.) The only caveat is that as it cools, it loses the bready texture and gains a tougher pastry texture. This is great for pizza and crackers and crusts, but less great for bread and soft rolls, so they're best eaten right away.

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Lazy batch-cooking recipe: Green lentils and rice. 

 

Needed equipment: Rice cooker with rice paddle and scoop. 


Ingredients: 

  • 1 scoop green lentils (if you don't deal well with a lot of fiber, substitute 1/2 of that with a scoop of textured vegetable protein or ground meat of your choice
  • 1 scoop brown rice (can sub white rice if you don't deal well with lots of fiber)
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes (or more to taste). 
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil (optional)
  • Water or stock of your choice to the appropriate rice cooker line. 

 

Cook above on whole-grain setting for your rice cooker. When finished, it should taste just a little too strong for you - that's so that the lentil-rice mixture will season the veggies to be added next. Portion into tupperware with two servings frozen veggies per one serving each of lentils and rice. Optionally add 1 tsp of lemon juice with each portion. 

 

I realized I didn't have enough lunch to bring the second helping I need to not hit a wall at martial arts tonight, soo I whipped that up while I had my coffee. Literally takes 5 minutes of prep and then you wait an hour while your rice cooker does all the work. 

 

Did I mention I love my rice cooker?

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Slow cooker Morroccan style chickpeas: 

  • 2 cups dried chickpeas
  • approx 6 cups water
  • 3/4 cup red lentils
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (can use canned minced garlic)
  • 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes (or approx 2 cups of diced tomatoes)
  • Optional: 2 cups diced squash or sweet potato (not used by me this time because turns out I need to scale this recipe down because it's too big for my crock pot. Whoops!)
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes or more to taste
  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth

 

Modified from a recipe I found online, so I guess I can call this one mine? I changed around the spices, removed the salt, added extra garlic and modified so it'd work with dried chickpeas instead of canned. 

 

Soak chickpeas overnight in a covered pot with water. Drain and rinse the next morning. Add everything to the crock pot. Turn on high for approx 4-6 hours (when chickpeas are done) or low for 8-10 hours. Older chickpeas will take longer to cook. Even the version I have with less veggies (no squash) makes 6-8 servings depending how you portion it - if I had the squash in there it would go a really long way, but I guess I'm using my squash for maybe some squash pancakes or soup? Or both, because it's a huge squash (literally over 2kg in mass). 


Can serve with rice or flatbread if you want grains. I'm just going to eat as-is. 

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Thanks! I am not vegetarian but heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes run in the family so I do try to avoid saturated fat and also eat a lot of fiber - which means cooking vegetarian meals for myself about half my meals. :)

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1-pot fish pasta: 

Need: 

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3-4 servings of white fish (frozen ok - any type of flakey white fish will do. I used sole), cut to bite size pieces
  • 1 400g can tomatoes
  • 250g of spinach (or 1/2 package frozen spinach)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 450 mL water
  • 4 servings spaghetti

Heat oil in pan. When water sizzles in the oil, add the chopped onion. Cook until soft. Add garlic, tomatoes, water, spinach and paprika. Bring to a boil. Add pasta and cook until 1/2 done. Add fish, finish pasta (gentle with the stirring so the fish doesn't break). 

Done. Quick and easy. One of those rare 20-min recipes that genuinely does take about 20 min. 

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Slow cooker Beef stew for today: 

  • 4 medium potatoes, peeled & chopped
  • 1 diced onion
  • 3-5 purple, yellow, or orange carrots, chopped (will depend on size)
  • 1 small or medium sweet potato, chopped
  • 2 tbsp onions
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 lb beef, chunked
  • 1/2 cup your choice of green peas or green lentils
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1.5 tsp paprika
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste 
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 2-3 bay leafs
  • Optional: 1 oz whiskey
  • Black pepper to taste

Dump all veggies into slow cooker. Add flour, stir until coated. Add the remaining ingredients, stir again. Turn slow cooker on and cook on low for 8-10 hrs or high for 6 hrs. 

 

Does require a fair amount of prep (about 30min worth) but once that's done, you can totally ignore it until it's cooked, so there's that. 

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Where did everybody go? Well either way here's a nice recipe 

Lemon pepper shrimp/tofu: 

- 1lb shrimp or an equivalent amount of firm tofu 

- 1/4 to 1/2 cup white wine. 

- as much lemon pepper seasoning as you can stand. I usually use like 1 tbsp sometimes more. Fresh lemon juice/zest and cracked pepper will up the flavor even more. 

- garlic of some sort, I use 1 tsp of brine from pickled garlic but the powder or a crushed clove will work fine. 

- red pepper flakes (optional)

-1 dash soy sauce/coconut aminos  (optional) 

Method: put everything in a container to marinate between 15 and 30 minutes. Too short and the flavor doesn't get into the shrimp, too long and all the acid makes the shrimp cook up weird and they get kinda chewy. Cook with your favorite method. I like using these as part of a stir fry. 

Full disclosure I have never tried the tofu method, a vegan friend of mine recommended it. 

 

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I've been making this for breakfast lately.  Lots of nutrients, tastes quite good, and I'm finding it filling.  Might need to scale up for some of you :-D

 

1/2C frozen fruit defrosted or fresh blueberries

1/4C Amaranth flakes or a packet of Qia oatmeal with chia seeds and buckwheat

water enough for the grain

Large-ish dollop of vanilla Greek yogurt

 

Microwave the fruit and grain for 2 min 30s.  Let it sit another few min to thicken.  Add the Greek yogurt to the top.

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Last night I made ratatouille in my Instant Pot.  It was wonderful.

  • 1 Eggplant
  • 1 Onion (I thought I had one full onion, but didn't - so I had to supplement with some dried onion I had in the pantry)
  • 2 Bell peppers
  • 3 zucchini (summer squash would be here as well, but I didn't have any)
  • 1, 14oz can of stewed tomatos (wish I had diced but I made due)
  • Tomato paste (okay, I lacked this as well - I used a bruschetta mix that was eggplant, olives, capers, and tomatoes that was thick enough and acidic enough to mimic the paste though.... and added in some tomato sauce I had)
  • Garlic
  • Italian seasoning
  • Olive Oil (I included a glug of black truffle olive oil as well)
  • Salt/Pepper

To make:

  1. Cube and salt the eggplant (or slice the eggplant, salt, remove salt and the resulting water, and then cube - probably wiser)
  2. Slice onion thinly
  3. Cube and dice other veggies
  4. Use the sautee function on the Instant Pot and warm 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
  5. Sautee the onions until softish, adding in the garlic half way through
  6. Add in 1~2 tablespoons of tomato paste and mix together
  7. Add in the remaining veggies and the can of tomatoes (I kept the liquid from my canned tomatoes, recipe I found used drained, but then added in some vegetable stock)
  8. Mix well to coat everything in the tomato-paste, add stock or a bit more water to ~0.5 cup
  9. Season with Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper as desired
  10. Set Instant Pot to "Manual, High" for 6 minutes
  11. When the timer is done, let sit for 6 more minutes, then do a quick steam release
  12. Mix everything together, let sit to cool and absorb some of the excess liquid
  13. Devour

 

So this came out shockingly well.  A bit more salty than it should be because of the bruschetta - the capers and olives made it salty, and then I liberally salted the eggplant and didn't remove enough.  Mine was also a bit more liquidy because I erred on the side of caution and added a bit more water.  I also probably would have preferred to cook the veggies for 5 minutes, and then do a quick release, just to keep things a bit more al dente.  Still, super, super tasty.  Really good alone, really good on top of some rice or riced cauliflower.

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New Englanders and Midwesterners, I apologise: It's been hot here. Very hot. 80-degree, blazing sun, sweatingly hot. I've been craving berries like mad. It is the season for berries. (Also ice cream, and have decided I don't like either Halo Top or paying for it.)

 

Solution: Impulse-buy a bag of frozen berries. Put a cup in the food processor with the half cup of cream, with a little optional vanilla or sweetener. Run food processor for twenty or thirty seconds. Scrape into a bowl and eat immediately. (I don't know if this will freeze. Maybe I'll experiment sometime.)

 

Science: The frozen fruit flash freezes the cream that touches the frozen surfaces while it's all being aerated.

 

Result: Instant ice cream that fits my macros, has the amazing texture of creamy high end gelato softened to perfect serving texture, and tastes like fruit and expensiveness and freshness rather than sugar and manufactured extracts. Also super cheap, because those berries were BOGO for a three pound bag. I think I got thirty bowls of ice cream for the cost of a pint or two of a leading brand of rock-solid, grainy, bland, chemical-aftertastey diet ice milk product. Take that, Halo Top.

 

Also, my calories have been quite low lately due to a chicken and vegetable stirfry kick, so I'm looking for ways to add them, and eating several large bowls of this also fits my macros. Hello, ice cream for breakfast.

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Bah. Latest attempt at no bake protein bars turned out like EVERY OTHER no-bake protein bar I've ever tried (which is to say, good taste but messy and melty and terrible texture unless frozen). :\ Either I'm doing something wrong in the recipe OR the recipes are lying about what the end-texture is. I'm not sure which. 

 

Aside from that: Food rut is happening so I need to change things up. Does anyone have any recipe ideas?

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Poor Man's Curry: ground meat and rice and salsa blended up together. Throw some veggies in there if you want to be healthy.

 

It's extremely lazy, and it's coming from a guy whose idea of innovation was throwing some coconut oil in with the rice, but I've gotta admit, it's easy, filling, and darn tasty if you spice it right. I typically let the meat determine what spices I'll use - salt and pepper are generally a given, but if it's red meat I'll go with basil, and if it's poultry I'll go with turmeric. Pork is a special case that also gets turmeric.

 

2 hours ago, chemgeek said:

Bah. Latest attempt at no bake protein bars turned out like EVERY OTHER no-bake protein bar I've ever tried (which is to say, good taste but messy and melty and terrible texture unless frozen). :\ Either I'm doing something wrong in the recipe OR the recipes are lying about what the end-texture is. I'm not sure which.

 

My money's on lying recipes.

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On 3/17/2018 at 11:52 AM, sarakingdom said:

Solution: Impulse-buy a bag of frozen berries. Put a cup in the food processor with the half cup of cream, with a little optional vanilla or sweetener. Run food processor for twenty or thirty seconds. Scrape into a bowl and eat immediately. (I don't know if this will freeze. Maybe I'll experiment sometime.)

 

Science: The frozen fruit flash freezes the cream that touches the frozen surfaces while it's all being aerated.

 

Result: Instant ice cream that fits my macros, has the amazing texture of creamy high end gelato softened to perfect serving texture, and tastes like fruit and expensiveness and freshness rather than sugar and manufactured extracts. Also super cheap, because those berries were BOGO for a three pound bag. I think I got thirty bowls of ice cream for the cost of a pint or two of a leading brand of rock-solid, grainy, bland, chemical-aftertastey diet ice milk product. Take that, Halo Top.

 

Also, my calories have been quite low lately due to a chicken and vegetable stirfry kick, so I'm looking for ways to add them, and eating several large bowls of this also fits my macros. Hello, ice cream for breakfast.

 

If it comes out at soft-serve texture, it can be frozen as ice cream. All ice cream is produced as soft-serve, then packaged and frozen solid for storage.

 

I've made ice cream with fresh fruit lots of times. There are some tricks I can share if you have an ice-cream maker and want to try it. Full-fat coconut milk is an excellent alternative to heavy cream. You don't have to be avoiding dairy. I think the coconut milk ice cream is often better than ice cream made with cream.

 

Science tip: Sugar and fat both lower the freezing point of the ice cream. So does ethanol if you use liqueur as a flavoring. That means that you can play with the macros by shifting the balance between sugar and fat. Ice cream that is low in both sugar and fat will be grainy with ice crystals.

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Hi everybody, I'm looking into eating vegatarian/vegan like once a week for the next challenge. Any suggestions for recipes? I'm trying to get more variety in my protein sources, I cook at home fairly often so Im willing to experiment with various recipes. Also I eat almost any type of food so don't hold back

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Hiii people. 

 

I apparently have a new and serious food allergy that saw me in ER for 3 hours yesterday. So! I can't have peanuts, have beed advised to be cautious about tree nuts because those allergies also go hand in hand and need to avoid legumes that are cross reactive with peanuts (lupin and fenugreek) until I get an allergist referral. 

 

Peanuts and tree nuts are a big part to my protein intake. Anyone have ideas on what I can use instead?

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Today's lunch - spinach and cheese omelette. I've been a bit low on protein and fat lately thanks to no longer being able to eat nuts, so eggs and cheese should help with that. 

 

Couple tips for cooking newbies: Use your very best, newest non-stick frying pan or skillet (make sure it has no scratches! Scratched or worn nonstick coating is why eggs stick to pans), and a flexible silicone spatula for scrambling the eggs. If you make a French omelette, you'll also need a whisk. If making a US style omelet, you will also need a hard plastic spatula for flipping the omelet and a fork. French style omelettes are not difficult but are a bit technical, if that makes sense. Very new newbies who've never cooked eggs before should follow the instructions for US-style omelets, as they're less difficult to make. 

 

Ingredients: 

  1. 3 eggs
  2. a few drops of cold water (if making a French style omelette)
  3. 1 serving of spinach (defrosted frozen spinach is fine), shredded
  4. 2 thin slices of cheddar cheese
  5. 1 tbsp butter
  6. Salt and pepper to taste

 

To make a French-style omelet: Whisk the eggs in a medium-sized metal mixing bowl until they break and become runny - the white and yolk should be thoroughly emulsified, so there is no more blobs of white visible. By "runny" I mean "about as thick as maple syrup and no thicker" - in other words, it will at some point become much easier to mix. At that point, add a few drops of water and mix a bit more. 

 

In a large non-stick pan, on medium, melt the butter. Wait until the pan is very hot (water should sizzle and boil off quickly if you put a drop into the pan), THEN add the eggs. After the eggs are in the pan, spread them out quickly. Use your spatula to scramble a bit, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Then add the spinach on top while the egg is still semi liquid. When the edges are looking dry, lift them up and tilt the pan so the extra egg mixture can roll into them. When the center is moist but there is no longer enough spare egg mixture to run it into the edges, break the cheese slices in two and spread them evenly over the egg. Roll it up like a crepe (or if you've never had crepes before, think a sausage roll), turn the heat off, and let it rest for 2 minutes before you put the omelette on the plate (optional: add a tsp of fresh butter to the top of the omelette and let it melt. Eat. 

 

note: French style omelettes should be cooked until the egg has almost a crepe-like texture, but not browned. 


To turn this into a US-style omelet: Beat the eggs in a bowl with a fork until well-scrambled but not totally emulsified - about a minute. Skip adding the water because US omelets are supposed to be thicker than French omelettes. Add the spinach to the eggs and stir. 

 

Melt the butter in a medium non-stick pan on medium-high heat. When the edges are dry, use your rubber spatula to lift the edge and let extra egg roll down. When there's no more extra egg mixture, add the cheese to the middle, then fold it in half using your spatula. Let it cook until the bottom is golden brown, then flip it. Let it cook on the other side until the other side is also golden brown, then plate and eat.

 

My notes: I find US style omelets tend to give the eggs a rubbery  texture I'm not a fan of, so I prefer French style omelettes, but some people prefer US-style omelettes, and they are more cooking newbie friendly so I included instructions on both. For extra protein, you can add a couple slices of thin-sliced lean ham or what USians call Canadian bacon (up here, we call it "back bacon"), chicken, or turkey. But three eggs also give a very decent amount of protein on their own, so. 

 

French people might also have an issue with my choice of omelet filling (using cheddar instead of a mild French cheese, frex), but that I like the method of prep doesn't mean I can't put a Canadian twist on it. :P 

 

Allergy and health notes: This recipe can be made lacto-ovo vegetarian, but is not appropriate for those with egg allergy. To make it dairy-free, substitute a tofu cheese or nutritional yeast for the cheddar, or even just forego the cheese entirely. To make it less saturated fat heavy, you can separate the yolks (at the cost of some vitamin D) or use a cooking oil in place of the butter. 

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