First off, happy holidays everyone! I hope you and your loved ones all had a wonderful Christmas 🙂
The past couple of weeks have been difficult in terms of staying on keto, but I stuck to my guns and I think in the end I didn’t do too badly. I even received a couple boxes of chocolates from some neighbours (who didn’t know I was on keto) even one that had a card that said “We hope you really really really like chocolate!” (I do… 😦 thanks for that.) but I didn’t even open the boxes! I took them over to my parent’s yesterday to share with the family but (conveniently) forgot them. In all honesty I didn’t mean to leave them there, but it’s probably for the best 😛
The last couple of days have been filled with lots and lots of baking and cooking. My mom suggested I take care of the appetizers and snacks before dinner, and suggested I make them all keto-friendly. With help from a fellow /r/keto redditer, /u/Craigasaurous and his awesome site full of great keto recipes… I put together a pretty decent sized spread 🙂
First off, I made a sweets plate:
Orange Chocolate Chunk Cookies
These turned out pretty good! By the time we went home there was only 1 left on the platter (and who really wants to be “that guy” who takes the last cookie?). The amusing thing about this recipe is that I didn’t have a zester, but I (naively) thought that I might be able to use my cheese grater. Well, it turns out that just doesn’t work, or maybe my cheese grater just isn’t sharp enough, or maybe it was because I bought mini honey mandarin oranges (with the idea that since they’re only about an inch in diameter, if I caved and ate an orange they’re portioned out so a single orange couldn’t possibly do much damage). So… I improvised! I peeled a mini orange or two and tossed the skins into my coffee grinder (I’m sure many of you are cringing right now) but hey, it worked! The other beauty of using mini honey mandarins is that when it came time to adding the freshly squeezed orange juice, one orange came out to almost exactly 1 tablespoon! And when I didn’t have a juicer… well, I used my garlic press and it worked like a charm 😛 one entire orange fit into the garlic press!
Per cookie: 223 Calories, 21g Fat, 6g Protein, 7g Carbs, 3g Fibre, 4g Net Carbs
Rosemary Shortbread Cookies
I’ll start by mentioning I’m really not a fan of rosemary… I left it in the deviled eggs, but having the flavour in cookies just… seemed unappealing to me completely. Craigasaurous suggested that I tone down the lemon a bit if I plan to leave out the rosemary, so I also left out the lemon zest (which was helpful since I didn’t have any lemons nor a zester). I think they turned out pretty good as well, my Mom seemed to particularly like them. I think it could have used a little more lemon in it, so in the future (if I ever get a zester) I’ll probably leave in the lemon zest.
Per Cookie: 113 Calories, 11g Fat, 3g Protein, 3g Carbs, 1g Fibre, 2g Net Carbs
Mock Snickers Bars
This was by far the most difficult to make… to start with I didn’t have any granulated stevia. I thought maybe I’d try substituting with granulated xylitol, but from what I read it was not even close to a 1:1 ratio in terms of sweetness, and the added dry powder would have given the bars a significantly different texture (if it even turned out at all). So I decided to substitute it 1:1 anyways and add a few extra drops of liquid stevia in hopes it would even out the sweetness. I think in the end it ended up being a bit too sweet for me, but my family seemed to love them. Aside from the sweetener dilemma, I had to toss out the first batch of peanut butter filling… it seemed to go from being of perfect texture and consistency, to an oily congealed mess in a fraction of a second. So I started that part over again and it turned out much better. The other issue was that the peanut butter part was very soft, whereas the chocolate was very hard… which made cutting it into squares very messy, so I ended up cutting bigger squares because it was such a pain in the ass; getting 10 squares out of the batch instead of the recommended 16 (which ultimately raised the carb count). I think that had to do with not having quite the right size of pan, so the layers of peanut butter and chocolate were a bit thicker than they were supposed to be. Anyways, as I said, although it didn’t look too pretty my family seemed to really like them, and I thought it was pretty good too (aside being being a little too sweet). I think of all the desserts on the sweets tray, this was probably the one that I would have the most trouble convincing someone that it had very few carbs.
Per Square: 378 Calories, 33g Fat, 7g Protein, 9g Carbs, 4g Fibre, 5g Net Carbs
Next, I put together 2 savoury plates. Along with some slices of cheddar, havarti, and garlic sausage, I included:
Spiced Bacon Deviled Eggs
This was probably my personal favourite of all the appetizers I brought with me. I had made this before, so I knew it was definitely worth making again. Unfortunately though, this time around I left the bacon grease out of the yolk mixture as my brother is vegetarian (and left the bacon out of a few of the deviled eggs) which gave them a bit more of a mayonnaise taste than they should have had, but they were still really good.
Per Egg (2 Halves): 175 Calories, 14g Fat, 8g Protein, 2g Carbs, 0g Fibre, 2g Net Carbs
Mini Grilled Ham & Cheese
This was definitely a family favourite. Of course I left the ham out of a couple of the sandwiches so my brother could give them a try, but as with the chocolate orange cookies, there was only 1 left on the platter by the time we left. These were slightly frustrating to make, but only because they were the last appetizer I made and by that time there was zero counter space left in the kitchen, and I had zero patience and very little sleep. So of course, when grilling them they started to burn, set the smoke detector off 3 times, and I had no where to put the frying pan… it was just. very. frustrating. Ultimately though, they turned out pretty delicious!
Per Sandwich: 183 Calories, 16g Fat, 8g Protein, 3g Carbs, 1g Fibre, 2g Net Carbs
Bacon Crusted Frittata Muffins
This is another one that turned out a bit messy… I think the problem here was that my muffin tins are small? I’m not exactly sure to be honest, but when the recipe said “they will puff up” I expected it to rise… a little. However, when I checked on them half-way through the cooking time, they were spilled out all over the muffin tin and burning on the bottom of my oven 😦 In terms of taste though, they turned out pretty good, near-zero carb, and pretty filling as well.
Per Muffin: 307 Calories, 21g Fat, 23g Protein, 0g Carbs, 0g Fibre, 0g Net Carbs
All in all, I think I did pretty well at not giving in. I ate a lot of the keto foods I brought, avoided the potatoes, stuffing, and sweet treats, and while I did go over my 25g daily limit, I only went up to 39g and seemingly have stayed in ketosis. In other news, one of the gifts I received this year was a digital food scale! This should definitely go a long way to helping me stay on keto!
Anyways, that’s about all I have to say… in terms of progress, I seem to have slowed, but not stalled. I can live with that since it’s the holidays and we’re all eating more than usual, but hopefully it will pick back up soon.
Happy New Year and keto on!
Weight Loss So Far: 32.8lbs
Weight Loss to Go: 49.0lbs
Fat Fashion Fund: $128