Wednesday, December 31, 2008

South Beach Diet Phase One Recipes Round-Up from December 2008 (Low-Glycemic Recipes)

Hungarian Pot Roast with Sour Cream GravyKalyn's favorite phase one recipe for December 2008 was
Hungarian Pot Roast with Sour Cream and Paprika Gravy.


In March of 2008 I started doing Low-Glycemic Recipe Round-Ups, including phase one recipes from Kalyn's Kitchen posted during that month. It's been fun seeing how many tasty phase one options I find, even in months like December when I wasn't that vigilant about looking for them. Tomorrow starts the biggest dieting month of the year, and I know phase one is challenging for many people who're starting the low-glycemic way of eating that's the foundation of the South Beach diet. In January I'm always doing a little diet tune-up myself, and this will be the third year in a row I'll be posting all phase one recipes during the month of January. This year I'll be sharing some of my favorite phase one dishes from the past, as well as new phase one recipes I've been working on. 

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Best Recipes of 2008 from Kalyn's Kitchen

Best Recipes of 2008I love those end-of-year lists that start showing up in late December, and last year I had fun picking my twelve Best Recipes of 2007, even though some months it was hard to choose. I had that same problem this year when I checked the monthly recipe archives, so I decided to spotlight a few of my favorites from each month of 2008. Of course I don't post recipes on the blog if I don't like the recipe, but these dishes are my very favorites; things I would happily eat over and over. For January 2008, let's start with the Black Bean and Beef Chili with Avocado, Lime, and Cilantro Salsa that's pictured above. Another dish I loved in January was the Crockpot Recipe for Southwestern Pot Roast.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Recipe Favorites: A Great South Beach Diet Breakfast - Alanna's Peanut Butter Oatmeal

Peanut Butter Oatmeal
(Updated December 2008: Recipes that I make over and over go into a special category called Recipe Favorites. This peanut butter oatmeal that I learned to make from fellow food blogger Alanna Kellogg back in October 2006 is fantastic! Nowdays I fill the small size Ziploc Twist 'n Loc food storage containers in advance with oatmeal and a pinch of salt, and keep them in the cupboard right by my microwave. There's no doubt this has turned out to be one of my favorite recipes ever for breakfast, so I'm updating my original post for new readers who might not remember this great breakfast option.)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Five Delicious Sugar-Free and Flourless Cookies to Bake for Christmas

Sugar-Free Flourless Pistachio CookiesThe holidays are just about to get into full swing, and for the next week I'll be doing some gift-giving, eating and socializing, a bit of traveling, and probably not too much blogging. Before I take time off, this cookie round-up is a Christmas present for everyone who loves cookies, but wants to avoid sugar or white flour. Baking isn't my best cooking skill, but this year I've really had good results with cookie recipes that were flourless and sugar-free. All the cookies could be gluten-free, but in a few cases I didn't call them gluten-free when you'd have to be sure to use gluten-free ingredients. I'd be hard pressed to say which of the cookies was my favorite, but the Flourless Sugar-Free Pistachio Cookies shown above were definitely some of the best cookies I've made. (There are even more cookies recipes in the Christmas Recipes if you'd like to take a peek.)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Two Recipes for Sugar-Free and Flourless Chocolate and Oatmeal Cluster Cookies

Sugar Free and Flourless Chocolate and Oatmeal Cluster Cookies
Two different Sugar-Free and Flourless Chocolate and Oatmeal Cluster Cookies (with Stevia or Splenda)

(Edit 2009: Kalyn's Kitchen is part of Holiday 2009 at Oprah.com, and this is one of the recipes being featured there, as well as being one of the Christmas Recipe on Kalyn's Kitchen. Welcome to anyone visiting from Oprah.com!)

I think the cookie-baking spree is about to come to an end around here, although before I take a few days off for the holidays I may do a round-up of all the sugar-free cookie recipes I've been trying. This latest cookie experiment started when I spotted Choco Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies on Mochocholata-Rita which reminded me of something my mother used to make, and I thought it would be fun to come up with a sugar-free version. After a few attempts I ended up with two similar but slightly different cookies and when I let my contractor try them, he liked both the fudgy and cakey versions. This is a regular Utah guy who's most definitely not on a diet, so when he thought both cookies were good I figured I'd let people decide which one to try. (Photos are the fudgy cookies, but both versions look very similar. If you're not watching your sugar intake, both these cookies could be made with sugar. I believe these cookies would also be gluten-free if you used gluten-free oatmeal.)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Recipe for Roasted Tomato, Basil, and Goat Cheese Holiday Spread

Roasted Tomato, Basil, and Goat Cheese Spread(Edit 2009: Kalyn's Kitchen is part of Holiday 2009 at Oprah.com, and this is one of the recipes being featured there. There are also lots more holiday offerings in the Christmas Recipes on Kalyn's Kitchen. Welcome to anyone visiting from Oprah.com!)

The combination of tomatoes, basil, and goat cheese is one of my favorite flavor trios, and I loved it in this holiday spread for crackers, which was also delightfully red and green. This recipe was quite honestly inspired partly by the fact that I had slow roasted tomatoes and frozen basil in my freezer, since it was snowing like crazy in Salt Lake and I didn't want to go to the store. However if you don't have those two ingredients, I'm thinking you could make something very similar to this with sun-dried tomatoes and pesto; see suggestions in the recipe. (Thanks to Chris from Mele Cotte who sent me the charming chile-pepper knife I'm using in the photo.)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday Night Photo: The Best Birthday Present Ever!

Birthday PostcardsJust one photo this week, but a heartwarming story to go with it. If you follow me on Twitter, or if you saw the comments on my birthday post of Sixty Things I've Learned in Sixty Years, then you heard about this. Yes, it was my sixtieth birthday, and my sister Valerie and her incredibly cute kids surprised me with sixty postcards in the mail telling "Sixty Things We Love About Aunt Kalyn."

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Kalyn's Kitchen Picks: Bob's Red Mill Almond Meal

Bob's Red Mill Almond MealAfter another blogger told me she hadn't heard of almond meal, I thought it might be a fun thing to spotlight for Kalyn's Kitchen Picks where I talk about ingredients and kitchen items I love. I think it was my friend Georgette who introduced me to almond meal, which is nothing more than blanched almonds ground to a consistency like that of cornmeal. It's used to replace flour or bread crumbs when the goal is to reduce the carb count or make a dish gluten-free, and it's a wonderfully low-glycemic ingredient for South Beach Dieters. It is a calorie-dense food, and not inexpensive either, so this is something I use in relatively small amounts.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Recipe for Sugar-Free and Gluten-Free Triple Almond Cookies

Triple Almond Cookies
Sugar-Free and Gluten-Free Triple Almond Cookies (made with Splenda or Stevia)

(Edit 2009: Kalyn's Kitchen is part of Holiday 2009 at Oprah.com, and this is one of the recipes being featured there, and also one of the Christmas Recipes on Kalyn's Kitchen. Welcome to anyone visiting from Oprah.com!)

I'm definitely not a baker, and if it wasn't cookie-eating season I might have given up on sugar-free almond cookies, since I had to make three versions of this cookie to get one I felt was good enough to share the recipe. First batch, completely delicious, but crumbled apart. as soon as you touched them. Second batch, stayed together, and tasted good, but the texture was a bit too cakey for what I wanted. Third batch (after I consulted my favorite gluten-free baking expert) nicely crisp and delicious.  Truthfully, I should call them "almost" sugar free, because adding 1 tablespoon of agave nectar improved the cookies a lot.  The photos were not quite what I wanted, but ignore that and make these delicious cookies anyway.

Monday, December 15, 2008

A Menu for Hope Starts Today and Here's the Prize I'm Offering

Menu for HopeFor several years now I've been proud to participate in A Menu for Hope, the annual fund-raiser sponsored by Chez Pim where food bloggers all over the world unite to raise money for a good cause. Last year Menu for Hope raised $91,188.00, and even though the economy is troubled this year, we know people will be as generous as they can. Once again, donations will raise money for the UN World Food Program, targeted to a school food program in Lesotho.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Easy Recipe for Roasted Carrots with Agave-Balsamic Glaze

Roasted Carrots with Agave-Balsamic GlazeRecently I was talking to my friend Susan about cooking carrots and she told me she gets her two young daughters to eat them by glazing the hot carrots with honey. I think that planted the seed in my mind for some kind of sweetened, glazed carrots, so today I used the same method as Agave and Balsamic Glazed and Roasted Buttercup Squash and roasted some carrots. Then in that serendipitous way that life sometimes works, Susan dropped by just as I was shooting these photos and we sat at my kitchen table and munched down the whole plate of carrots. Susan and I have both approved this recipe.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Friday Night Photos: A Fabulous Store for Cookbook Lovers

Used Cookbook StoreI've missed a few weeks of Friday Night Photos, but this week I'm back with a recommendation for anyone on the east coast who's shopping for someone who loves cookbooks. When I was visiting Lydia, she took me to the most amazing store that sells used and hard-to-find cookbooks. Next time you're in Massachusetts, don't miss this store!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Recipe for Low-Sugar Raspberry Cheesecake with Pecan Crust

Low-Sugar Raspberry Cheesecake
Low-Sugar Raspberry Cheesecake with Pecan Crust

Here we are in the middle of the sugar rush season, where there are sweet treats everywhere, and even people like myself who normally don't have trouble passing up the sugary stuff will be seriously tempted. To help with that, I thought it might be fun to try to add a few more options to the Low Sugar Desserts section of the recipe archives this month, and it's been fun testing new dessert recipes. (It's a tough job, but someone has to do it!)

Monday, December 08, 2008

Sixty Things I've learned in Sixty Years

Photobucket

Today's my birthday, and after several weeks of mental flip-flops trying to decide just how I felt about it, I'm announcing to the internet that I'm turning 60. Even typing it makes me catch my breath a bit, even though every single person I've told that I was going to be 60 has looked at me in complete disbelief. For those of you who are a long ways from this age, let me warn you: sixty is like no birthday I've had before. Sixty is the first birthday where I've had to consider that my life is more than half over.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Healing Asian Soup with Ginger, served with a Big Hug for Barbara

Asian Soup with GingerBarbara from Winos and Foodies is one of those wonderfully genuine and positive people that everyone loves, even those of us who live halfway around the world and can only enjoy her spirit through the miracle of the internet. Recently Barbara courageously shared the news that the cancer she's battled since 2004 has returned. She's now undergoing another round of chemotherapy, so Ilva from Lucullian Delights and Bron from Bron Marshall have organized a giant virtual hug for Barbara to let her know how much healing energy is being sent her way. This healing soup is something I'd gladly make for Barbara if I could, so I'm sending her the recipe with all my love and best wishes.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Recipe for Revithia - Greek Chickpea (Garbanzo Bean) Soup with Lemon and Olive Oil

Revithia - Greek Chickpea SoupSometimes the simplest of ingredients can produce a dish that's full of interesting flavor, and that was certainly true with this Greek soup made of dried chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans.) The soup would have been a perfect candidate for my new pressure cooker, but I made it before I got the pressure cooker, so I enjoyed the smell of this cooking for several hours. I'm not sure how authentic my take on this is because I combined several recipes to come up with a version that appealed to me, but I loved the flavor of this creamy chickpea soup brightened up with lemon and drizzled with a bit of olive oil.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Recipe for Turkey and Cannellini Bean Soup with Sweet Potatoes and Rosemary

I guess I've had turkey soup on the brain, because after I shared my ideas for turkey leftover recipes, I made this new version of turkey soup, and also turkey and white bean chili over the weekend. I'll save the turkey chili recipe for a while, but I thought I'd post this soup recipe just in case there are people who still have leftover turkey. I love to create new soup recipes, and this soup with turkey, cannellini beans, sweet potatoes, and rosemary was definitely a winner.

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