Thursday, March 31, 2011

On the Hunt for Low Carb Snacks...

Lunch!

As I sat down to eat my lunch today (Tuna Melt in Tomato halves), I was looking for good snack and meal ideas that are also low carb.  Not that low carb food is all that hard to make, at least for me.  I like to keep things simple most of the time, today's lunch was a handful of ingredients and took all of 5 minutes to make, most of which was spent cutting pickles, lol.  That first picture is what my lunch looked like before I made it "more edible", lol.  I also added a little Salt & pepper along with some dehydrated minced Onion (this Toss on top of the tuna while I dice my pickles to sort of "rehydrate" in the juices in the meat).  I only buy Best Foods Mayo (Hellman's for anyone on the east coast, same company...different name by region) because it has the fewest carbs (and plainest ingredients)...besides it just tastes good!  The pickles aren't nearly as good as the last jar I had, but they were Nalley brand and these are Vlasic, nothing bad about these, I just prefer the flavor of the other.  I'll buy whatever I can get my hands on though!  Sugar Free sweet pickles?!?  Where were these when I was a kid and they took away my sweet pickles because I was Diabetic?  "Back then" it was a treat to get one tiny sweet pickle at Thanksgiving!  I've been munching on these guys like they're going out of style the last few weeks, hence getting out the second jar!  Tuna I'm not too picky about, as long as it's "Light" or "White".  I don't care for the Albacore or whatever they call the "darker" tuna and oil-packed makes me want to yarf, lol.  Although, oil-packed is supposed to be better for us low-carbers... I just can't make that switch! 

Cheese though...mmm...cheese (think Homer and his Donuts here)!  I grew up in Oregon and as long as you don't adhere to Wisconsin's claim as the cheese capitol of the world....there is nothing better than Tillamook cheese!  If you're ever anywhere near Tillamook, OR...take the time to visit the facilities and take the tour!  I went with my little sister several years ago, it was supposed to be a big vacation to the coast with my Cousin (really she's my Dad's cousin...my parent's age), my Mother, Grandmother, and Aunt (my cousin's Mother, so my Great Aunt), but my Grandmother got sick and we ended up spending our entire vacation in Portland (where they all lived) instead and the two of us made a day trip to the Oregon coast (Newport, Seaside, the works!) and stopped at the Tillamook Cheese Factory for a tour on the way to the beach (a 1-2 hour drive from the city).  You get to see them making the cheese and I believe (though it has been a very long time) milk the cows.  You are on the actual ranch were the cows are...so be prepared for "cow smell" when you step out of your vehicle!  Anyway, the tour ends in the gift shop.  Make sure to pick up some fun gifts if you go!  We got a fridge magnet for my Mother that looks like a brick of cheese!  Also, they have cheese samples there, you'll want to try the cheeses you just saw being made, cut, packaged, and labeled for sale!  And pick up a few pounds of cheese while you're there too!  Or, ya know...go to the local grocery store and just buy some.   We get our shredded cheese nearly in bulk when it goes on sale (which it has done recently a few times) at Fred Meyer, they put out a coupon usually about once a month in the Sunday paper for Tillamook shredded cheese 10 for $10!  I almost never pass this coupon up...that's why I have 15 bags of shredded cheese (10-12 of which are in my box freezer)!  When I can't afford Tillamook (the bricks can be a little spendy), I buy Bandon cheese...oddly enough, this is also owned by Tillamook!

Non-Food Item...

Before I get into what I found but haven't purchased any of yet...I got this fun new toy yesterday too!  Normally, I just buy a cheap baby bottle brush to get inside the Thermos, scrub tall glasses, etc...but after looking at this scrubber by Dawn...I decided to pay the extra $0.70 or so and give it a try.  You just push the scrubber down into the glass (or whatever) and as you push down, the handle spins doing all the scrubbing for you!  I broke my bottle brush quite a while ago and have had a Thermos sitting full of soapy water ever since waiting for me to remember to buy a new one (gross I know...I changed the water daily though...).  I was finally able to clean it though and boy am I happy with the job it did!  I think that the Thermos is cleaner than it's ever been!  It does spray water everywhere though...so stand back!

Items to Try...

All I did was go to Amazon.com and type in "sugar free", then I did a few searches for "low carb"...but for the most part, these all came off the sugar free search.  The first thing that popped up was an amazing treat for this house!  Sugar Free Oreos?!?  It can't be!  Of course, the carb count on them is a little steep at 3g Net carb per cookie!  They're also a little spendy ($8+ at Amazon), but I found them cheaper at Netrition ($3.50, plus shipping), so I'll order them from there when I do order them.  I'll save these for a special occasion though... you only get "about 16" cookies for that price...so $4.95 for UPS shipping to my zip code, plus $3.49 for the cookies....divided by 16 cookies...makes the cookies cost $0.53 each!  It could be worse, but I think I'll save them for a birthday or Christmas, lol.  By then we should be able to "afford" a few extra carbs now and then.

I already have my second bottle of this stuff opened, but it is definitely worth mentioning!  I didn't think Id ever see Honey again when I decided to go back to Low carb eating!  Yet, there it was!  I had seen it called for in recipes and after a complete failure at trying to make low carb, sugar free caramels, I was on a mission to find this.  I figured it had gone the way of most low carb items that were on the market 5+ years ago, but after much "Googling" and searching through people's comments in threads about it, I saw a semi-recent post (it was under a year old) on a forum that said that their local Wal-Mart carried it!  Woot!  I rushed right out (at 10pm) and drove the few miles to my local Wal-Mart!  There it was, nestled amid the regular Honey!  It isn't priced too bad either, right around $2, just like the "regular" kind!  It tastes "like" honey, but it is sure not "exactly like" it!  It is excellent though in a nice hot cup of Earl Grey with just a touch of Cream added to it!  Earl Grey is a recently acquired taste, I never could stand the stuff growing up, I thought my Mother was nuts for drinking it, lol.  Yup...showing my age now!  I swiped the picture off of Honey Tree's website, the pictures I took of my score are blurry and sort of "blah" looking, lol.

They sell large packages of these at the WinCo near my house (50 in a package!), but I haven't had the nerve to try them yet!  Strictly speaking, Whole Wheat is not a food that should be in our diets just yet.  But, if/when I think we "need" a Taco night...I'll get a package of these!  The large package is "on sale" for $5.98...12 cents and 3g Net carbs each!  We could have one "taco" and seconds could be on a bowl, lol.  I haven't read through the entire company website, but they appear to know what they're doing in all things "low carb tortilla" wise, lol.






Gifts for the Low-Carbers....
 I was going to suggest a book...but after reading through the "look inside" pages, I'm glad I did!  Normally the "for Dummies" books are pretty good, but the Low carb book is just another persons version of what low carb is.  I know, I know, they all are...but I have found that the first low carb diet I was following just wasn't working for me this round (last time I lost 30-45 lbs in under 6 months, but I went off the diet and now weigh much more than I did then).  I was "Somersizing", but it seems even the creator if that plan has "fallen off the wagon" and changed her own diet to suit her (I'm talking about Suzanne Somers...the Blond from Three's Company).  She does have a similar low carb eating plan out now (with a new book to boot), but it is specifically for women over 40, I'm not there yet, lol.

I have switched to following Atkins' diet...it is a little less strict with the foods you can and cannot eat (I got to add Olives, Pumpkin, nuts, and coconut back into my diet).  It does require you keep track and limit yourself to a total number of carbs each day, Induction (phase 1) is 20g Net carbs.  As of yesterday, I'm down 22.6 pounds total since I started low carbing in October!  Other people have lost as much as 30 lbs in the first month, I'm jealous of those people, lol.  The only thing I don't follow according to the Atkins' plan is the Cream and Splenda (or other sweetener) guidelines.  I like cream in my morning coffee (and more than the 2 T a day you're allowed), I usually have several cups!  Also, you are supposed to limit Sweetener to 3 packets...that's a grand total of 1 Tablespoon a day!  So, I don't follow that part...I'm still loosing!

Instead of wasting money on that "for Dummies" book...get a good one, the new Atkins' book!  First though, if you want to try it or are already low carbing and haven't so yet...go to this website and order your "starter kit" (it's free and comes with a little recipe book, and 3 of the Atkins' snack bars!), and while you're there, download the $3 off coupon for the book!  Just remember to send the coupon in (it's a rebate type deal)...we forgot too, it's being used as the bookmark in the book, lol.

I did find a sort of cool gift idea on Amazon, though I can't figure out just who the seller is...I need to do some research on the Brand name here.  A cooler packed full of meat!  The description claims that it's all low carb, but I'm suspicious of it until I get a look at the ingredients and nutritional info.  They had several "gift pack" sizes listed, ranging from around $40 to $200!  The "20-piece" pictured was for $60, but it does come in that snazzy 6-pack cooler, lol.  This is not cheap meat!  I went to the website list on the cooler (or here) and a 1.25 lb "slab" of 30 (1/2 slab) servings (1g Carb each serving) was $28!  Yep, not something I'll buy myself, lol.  This does give me an idea for a "do-it-yourself" gift basket though...just using less expensive packages I can find locally!  I bet one or two of the local butchers sell similar products...  Also, while the website appears to have lots of "low carb" choices, in a small box when I clicked the nutritional link to the slab of jerky was a little note that they carry X number of low carb options...with instructions to follow a link to see them.  Oh well, the idea is still a good one!

That's pretty much all I found that was truly low carb...Dreamfields pasta claims to be low carb...but I need to do a little looking to see what they consider to be "protected carbs", the nutritional info for their Angel Hair pasta says that each serving has 41g total carbs, 5g Fiber (you subtract these out), and 31g of "protected carbs" (and they subtracted those too)...leaving each serving with 5g Net carbs.  Looks to me like 36g net carbs and someones "fancy math" skills at work though...

3 comments:

  1. Hello I would suspect you have Cuckoo Maran chicks. How do u know they are girls??

    John
    2 Cuckoo Marans girls 1 year old --2 brown eggs a day

    Just love our chickadees ( a good way to call them as they are free range )

    manaakua@usa.com

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  2. John - So sorry, I just now found your comment! I purchased my chicks at the local feed store...they got them from Dunlap Hatchery in Idaho. They are "hatchery quality" and probably do run a bit on the "mutt" side because of that. I would LOVE a Marans! I really want one or two Black Copper Marans, but have yet to find an affordable breeder in my area (the one I did find wants way too much or doesn't like that my coop is built mostly out of scrap, lol). As for how do I "know" they are girls...well, they are supposed to be sex-linked since they are Silver Laced Wyandottes and a Plymouth Barred Rock, but as time goes by, two appear to be looking very roo-ish! No crow attempts yet though and they will be 8 weeks tomorrow, so keeping our toes crossed! We'll know for sure when they either lay eggs or crow!

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  3. The Sugar Free Oreos have finally hit stores in the Spokane area!We found them at WinCo for $2.88 a box, much better than ordering them online! And I must say...they taste just like an Oreo! Okay, they do have a slight "fake sugar" taste to them, but you quickly get over it when the joy of sticking an actual Oreo in your mouth kicks in!

    They are still 3 net carbs per cookie, so we limit ourselves to one cookie a day. I went and bought another box today, it's a nice after dinner treat on the nights we remember they are there! We keep them out of view because they are so dang good.

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