Low Carb Pizza – Yes, there really is such a thing!

Hubby decide that for the first quarter of 2018 he wanted to adopt a high protein and low carb/no carb diet; and beyond keep to a lower carb diet as he feels his body runs better with that combination.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s a challenging one for me as “head chef”.  A few years ago we both engaged in Dr & Dr Eades Lose Your Middle Aged Middle, eating plan.  It worked. We both lost several inches around our middles.

However, and here’s the biggie for me, the diet plan made us completely antisocial.  Not because of the bad breath you might obtain from living solely on protein… we were very careful about our oral hygiene; but because it made it almost impossible to go out socially.

By making a few tweaks to the diet to better encompass our lifestyle we did find a way. For example, in restaurants we could have ham egg and chips without the chips or a mixed grill again without the chips.  I recommend you ask the waiter to leave the chips off the plate altogether because its much tougher just to choose not to eat them when they’re there and smelling so damned good!

For Hubby it was a great diet, He loves nothing more than a high meat content meal.  He loves grilled bacon and fried eggs for breakfast every day.  He doesn’t have high cholesterol or blood pressure so that’s OK.  According to the doctor he’s fit as a fiddle (even for a man of his age 😉 )  He could even stomach the disgusting body builder high protein meal replacement drinks.  I, on the other hand would wretch at the smell of them so in the end I just didn’t bother with the shakes at all.

Overall the diet was successful, we didn’t feel hungry, we weren’t miserable and we both lost 1.5 – 2 stone.

Several years on our weights have exceeded our pre diet weights.  As with all diets, they just plain don’t work long-term.  UNLESS you can find dietary habits that fit your lifestyle and the new eating regime becomes your lifestyle choice.

We’re trying again.  John is back to high protein / low carb and I’ve taken from the Dr Eades book those recipes and tips that worked before and done my own thing for him.  For Hubby I cook up loads of interesting meat based or egg based meals and he can have as much cheese as he wants with those. So I make lots of creamy/cheesy sauces which he loves, and as long as he supplements his diet with potassium, magnesium and multivits, hes a happy bunny.

I decided I don’t do as well on high protein and low carb. I could do it short-term but it wouldn’t be sustainable for me.   I prefer veggie options quite often and would rather have no meats than all meats.  I struggle to give up fruit and salad and much of that is a no go if you are being a strict no carb dieter.

I’ve chosen to cut out cake/alcohol/chocolate and crisps. and drastically reduce my bread and cheese intake.  Funnily enough the only one I’m struggling with is crisps.  I crave them constantly.  I’ve replaced those with natural seeds and nuts and I salt those myself – it seems to (almost) satisfy my needs. I also discovered during the first diet that nuts and seed vary greatly in their carb/protein ratio .. i can’t have walnuts but i tend to stick to hazelnuts, almonds and pecan and add pumpkin seeds to the mix.

You have to read this

Very occasionally I crave chocolate but other than a couple of teeny treats. I’ve managed that too, even when I’ve had PMT (big high-five to me).  (BTW I cannot stand carob, it’s NOT an equivalent option in my opinion, I don’t care what anyone says!  I’d rather do without completely.  )

These days there so many great alternatives on the market and many of them can be bought in mainstream supermarkets.

This alternative to spaghetti is available in our local Aldi store. It has 6.6g of carb per 100g compared to 76g in standard durum wheat spaghetti, most importantly hubby likes it and it only takes 3 minutes to cook.  So I can stick to my normal whole-wheat spaghetti and make a bit of this for him.

Of course there are fresh veg options to spaghetti, which are really easy to prep yourself but can be bought pre prepared , for example courgetti (which I think is available in the fresh veg section of most supermarkets these days – but is a very expensive way of buying fresh veg #justsaying) .  Really easy to make yourself though.

I make hubby mashed cauliflower or cauliflower cheese to sit in place of potato on his plate.  But you can also rice cauliflower….and if that sounds like a lot of hassle you can even buy it ready done… (I got this in Tescos)

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Then there are all the alternative flours.  I bought The Groovy Food Organic Coconut Flour from Tescos in my home delivery.  Only 16g carb compared to plain flour at 81g

I bought it to make this Fat Head low carb pizza base with a recipe from Ditch the  Carbs.com (thanks Graham Miller for this link) thinking it would be a good alternative to almond flour (which Tescos didn’t have ).  Subsequently I’ve discovered this Sukrin sesame flour with only 6g carb (although it was in my local whole food shop Vans Good Foods  in Llandindod Wells; and it wasn’t cheap).

So how did the pizza go?…..

I doubled up the quantity as Hubby can easily eat a whole normal pizza to himself and I can usually manage with a bit of patience and persuasion.  However, these were so filling even though his was bigger than mine we each only managed half.

Basically you plonk the mozzarella, and flour in a bowl with the egg and lightly microwave and it will mix into a dough – ts hard to believe, its like a magic trick, I really didn’t expect to get a rollable dough but…

surprisingly it rolls out very easily

TAH DAH!!!

After that its simply a matter of cooking the base, 15 mins in a gas 7/225 degree oven, taking it out, adding your toppings of choice (pre-cooked especially meats), then popping them back for 5 more minutes.  Whats more, Hubby said he would happily eat it again.  I would too but I might try the coconut or almond flour, I did find it a tad over sesame-y.  Extremely filling though and lovely rustic looking.

five minutes further cooking with the topping on and voila!
serving suggestion 😉

Just so you know, this post is not affiliates or sponsored in any way.  I have tried the products purely for our own health wellbeing and my views on the outcome and mine alone – as they would be even if someone were to ask me to review something (which I am more than happy to do #hinthint 😉 

My Random Musings

Letters to my Daughter

Life: Mine: It’s full: Very full

15016351_1247664865307784_3338542209251484497_oI’m a woman.  I’m self-employed.  I’m fairly ‘alternative’ and, am told, slightly ‘eccentric’.  I wear many hats.  Not all suit me…

Life gets confusing and chaotic……

Here’s perhaps why….

13912605_1298769933474183_1529318925936773135_n???????????????????????????????I’m an artist, I occasionally do pet portraits, I often do stained glass commissions. I do have an Etsy shop, which I manage in a very ad hoc way.  I promise to keep a stock of my designs but the artistic bit of me is really only interested in the bespoke commissions and one-off designs , so I struggle to find time to hold stock.  So I make my designs to order.

20170322_123236I teach stained glass.  It’s a new string to my bow.  I love it.  I find it immensely satisfying and it brings me huge amount of joy.

I run a B&B.  This involves being really nice to (mostly) lovely people, talking (a lot), keeping the place clean, ironing sheets (even though I’d never iron my own) and cooking really gorgeous breakfasts.  I do this with my hubby.  We love working together.  It works.  Coming to stay at Cerdyn Villa is like staying with friends (so we’re told) and that, my lovelies was the plan so things her are going well

breakfast

I manage our business website and various tourism pages on social media.  Some of these pages… “www.cerdynvilla.wales” is our lifestyle hub (ooo fancy!), it leads you off to “Pink Butterfly Art and Glass” – my Etsy shop; “Pink Butterfly at Cerdyn Villa” -our FB page combining our B&B and my art; http://www.cerdynvilla.co.uk – our B&B website; “rose-tinted Ramblings” – my blog; “Home of Bog Snorkelling” – the tourism FB page for our town; “@Berni_Benton” – my twitter account

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m a gardener – I look after six people’s gardens.  Mostly elderly ladies, some of whom like to garden with me and its as much about the company as the weeding and pruning.  I LOVE weeding (does that make me odd?  I don’t care, I LOVE IT!)

peanut butter cheesecakeI work shifts in the local cafe and cover for the owners if they go away.  Sometimes I even bake some cakes!

I blog.  For fun, but mainly to keep me sane and promote my work(s) (not necessarily at the same time). Its called Rose Tinted Rambling, but you know that because you are here now.  It’s mainly a brain dumping ground.  Most thoughts evolve whilst I’m either ironing or weeding and I can’t rest until they’re typed.  So there! I try to categorise to avoid you haven’t to read the ‘boring shit’  but I’d say there’s pretty much something for everyone here.

I  advocate for a local elderly lady and manage her finances. It’s my ‘pay-it-forward” – we should all have one.  It’s great to give back.

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I volunteer, Working to help run the weird and wacky events in Llanwrtyd – I am the commentator at the World Bog Snorkelling and Man v Horse.  They gave me the job because, and I quote “if the PA system breaks I’d still be loud enough for everyone to hear”.  Hubby said he could hear me from the house last year and I was three-quarters  of a mile away….

… I hasten to add the mic was working that day.

I am responsible for keeping our household accounts.  Although hubby takes my figures and does the scary bit of filling in the returns and sending them off

I do all the food shopping, planning and feeding. Sometimes I do this well.  Other times we eat out!

I ‘manage’ a tenanted house with 5 flats.  Not for fun, at all, but because the landlords were neighbours but now live in Spain.

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We keep hens, that means they have a house that needs cleaning

11182523_1594413547510404_4888338233642762611_oI’m a mum………

………………………………………….

……..in my spare time (!!)

I do a bit of yoga and belly dancing

a vision in red

I look after my own garden (sometimes I get dressed before I start)

11168862_1046829525379356_5330321855820313332_oI’m a member of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party (say hello to Lady Lily the Pink).  I even stood for the Welsh Assembly

I soak in a bubble bath

I enjoy a good live band

I read the occasional book.  mostly I read blogs  and watch TED talks

I snuggle on the sofa with my Hubby and watch Netflix

I play board games with my boy(s) – son and hubby

I eat out with friends

I eat in with friends

I drink out with friends

I drink in with friends

Sometimes I just drink…….

I love my life, but planning is difficult.  Impossible actually.  So it appears chaotic.  and sometimes it really is.  It also appears disorganised.  But actually it rarely is.  ….

….it just feels it

Logistically its a massive challenge.  It’s so far removed from the 9-5 life I used to lead.  I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

diaryofanimperfectmum

What My Fridge Says

 

Focus, Aspire, Inspire

I have been inspired, as I often am, by certain bloggers I follow.  This time my muse is Debbie of My Random Musings.

As I flutter around in random formation, flitting from this project to that; this passion to that; this idea to that; this demand on my time to that; I get through my days,week and months in a blink of an eye.  Completing a lot of stuff; dipping my toes in many a pond and having a great deal of fun but it all kinds of floats around in a mishmash of activity without borders, direction or guidelines.

That’s all very well.  A nice, jolly, unfocused existence, guided by optimism and chance, but I really would like to look back on a year without being completely surprised by how I got from January to Christmas and the circuitous route I took to get there.

I’m not saying I don’t love the surprised.  I do.  That’s the problem.  I enjoy the freedom of it a little too much.  Sometimes to the point that at any point in the year I’m not really sure what sort of ground I might find under each footstep.  More importantly I’m not moving forward.  I’m treading the beautiful waters in which I wallow and am allowing myself to enjoy things as they float by; maybe latching onto them for stability for a few moments; but never really reeling myself in.

I’d like to be able to say my starting point was A by goals were B,C and D with a few distractions via M,Q and W, but I made it to D by the end of an allotted time.  I’d like to measure my achievements as well as list them.

So *deep breath* I’m taking Debbie’s advice and starting with a bucket list:

1.TWITTER – I’d love to have over 500 followers before the end of the year, a small hop rather than a leap  – in my mind I already know I really want 1000 but let’s be realistic about these things. This is me

2. ALSO TWITTER – I need to find help and learn how to use it more effectively – I love talking politics, parenting, art, religion, tourism – I don’t want to focus on one topic – I love to RAMBLE and REACT and REFLECT as he mood takes me and the words grab me but I must more effectively access the right people for each topic otherwise I am aware I may bore, or worse, annoy my followers

3.BLOGGING – again I want to ramble randomly so I’m aware I need to be smarter with my tags/metatags/linky’s/sharing . Again I need advice .  I can find lots of blog share site but I’m not interested in fashion, cosmetics, hair and makeup and I’m in the UK… I need to find other companions  – as fun as some of those I follow are – I need more of the random eccentrics out there.  I won’t put a link as you’re already here but feel free to have a look round if you can make it to the end of this post 😉

4.ALSO BLOGGING – I need to set a goal for ‘followers’ but I don’t really want followers so much as interactors – I’ll continue writing it even if no-one reads it because sometimes I can’t sleep until I get whatever it is out of my head.  however, it would be lovely to have a few people who felt inspired to discuss my content… Lets say I’ll aim for 36 new followers / contributors in 2017, 20,000 views

5.TEACHING – this is new to me, I’m loving it – teaching stained glass to members of the community as part of a funded Community Project – my goals are to be proud of the finished product, have it installed by the end of summer and to both blog and Vlog the process.  My aim is to obtain another teaching commission for 2018

6.STAINED GLASS ART- let’s get proactive instead of reactive.  Last year I started thinking about Christmas stock mid October – about 3 months too late when I had zero old stock to sell and had to close by order book on 5th Dec because for some reason we decided a holiday before Christmas would be relaxing.  It was.  The run up to it was definitely not.  So. START making Christmas glass in the summer.

7.ALSO STAINED GLASS – I am really really bad at marketing myself, my skills and my ETSY shop (I bet you are thinking ” whoa, she has an Etsy shop?!”) – I looked at my Etsy shop today and all items have expired.  I’ve not been updating my existing ‘made to order’ items or creating any new ones.  Target – never have my shop empty. Create 2 new designs before summer (lets say end July).  Anyway, here’s a link to the shop ..don’t look yet, I’ve written this but I haven’t done it yet, give me a few hours!!

8. ALSO STAINED GLASS – my favourite moment in the artistic process is creating a new design and making it for the first time.  I love most of all the commissioned one-off pieces.  As an artist rather than a commercial maker, the fun and challenge is in the original design and the presentation of it to the individual who asked for it.That said I really need to focus on marketing myself as a designer and maker of one off commissioned glass panels… If I could get 3 more commissions for 2017 I’d be a very happy bunny.

9.BED AND BREAKFAST – Cerdyn Villa is, in my mind small and perfectly formed .  I love that we run it like we are having friends over.  I love that we spend hours talking to our guests over breakfast or sharing our wine/beer in the garden on a rare warm sunny day.  Yes its a business, but mostly its a lifestyle choice.  What I wanted to do last year was to start running weekenders for like-minded people – eg: an artists retreat, a classic car enthusiasts retreat; that sort of thing.  Basically fill our 3 rooms and maybe have 4 or 5 campers come along – welcome drinks evening around a bonfire, breakfast together, some form of group activity, an evening meal together, possibly everyone heading to the local pub together for a pint, some other activity and away they go – fulfilled, enlightened and loving our home and this little village. My target is to run a first one in 2017…In September *better warn hubby*

10.ART  – as an acrylic artist I am again pretty crap at self promotion.  I would however be very happy to paint 2 more original spacescapes to add to my series and arrange for them to be exhibited somewhere before Christmas.  I’m not a mass creator of sellable art I just want to follow my passion and paint these for me – but be brave enough to put them out there for others to look at.

11.FACEBOOK.  I amalgamated my art page (Pink Butterfly Art & Glass) and our B&B page (Cerdyn Villa B&B into one with a view to create a ‘lifestyle hub’  The page is Pink Butterfly Art & Glass at Cerdyn Villa B&B or @CerdynVilla – I’d love to grow that to 1000 likes.

12.LIFESTYLE HUB – with so many facets to life I set up (with a lot of help from my friend and  mentor, Dinah) a ‘one-stop-shop ‘Lifestyle Hub’ combining my blog, Facebook, B&B website, art and twitter into one place from where everything can be accessed.  I need to make it more visible (how? – ok arrange more time with the gorgeous Dinah – for that but mostly for coffee and cwtches).  Plus I promised I’d start a VLOG... so my target is to set up a VLOG!!!

So there you go.  I shall continue fluttering about randomly rambling my way along but at the same time (yes I do plan to multi task), I shall keep my mind on these goals and moreover I shall report back in January on my success/failure/adaptations to the above.

Wish me luck, I’m going in!