A Low-Carb Challenge

///A Low-Carb Challenge

MY TWO-DAY CHALLENGE
While I’ve already established that low-carb works best when it simply becomes your everyday way of eating—your lifestyle— with your body in a state of ketosis and burning fat, I’d now like to issue a challenge, something completely different for those people who can’t quite break their reliance on carbohydrates. My Two-Day Challenge has been issued for those who have tried, but failed, or those who have never had the determination to try in the first place.

A TRIAL RUN
Consider this a trial run, a “try it before you buy it” plan towards success. It’s walking before you run…baby steps into the world of eating fresh, naturally low-carb foods. Processed foods are addicting, with a cocktail of carbs, sugar, and salt that hit the pleasure centers of the brain. Sugar (and carbs that convert into sugar in your body) give you a “sugar high” that is hard to resist, even when it can lead to a crash.

BREAKING FREE
My Two-Day Challenge is about breaking that addiction to carbs as you cook and enjoy real food. It’s to show how easy and delicious eating low-carb can be; to show you that eating fresh foods can work within your life, and that it can possibly give you more energy, without the crash of those sugar highs.

TRY IT YOURSELF
If you can’t go all-in with low-carb, take My Two-Day Challenge by pledging to stop eating processed and refined foods only two days a week. Any two days a week. It could be Saturday and Sunday, when you have less temptations in the work place and more free time to cook; or it could be Monday and Tuesday, to cleanse your body after indulgences of the weekend.

Pick any two days, whether they’re subsequent or not, and make the resolution that you’ll eat only fresh, naturally low-carb foods on those days. While it won’t put your body into a consistent state of ketosis for sustained weight loss, many people eat so many refined carbohydrates that even cutting them out some of the time can make a real difference.

We all have to start somewhere! Start your journey by enjoying recipes like the ones included below just two days a week. Hopefully you’ll then find that this is a journey that you can fully commit to. When and if you’re ready, you can jump on the low-carb lifestyle full-time, get into that state of ketosis, and feel even better. It’s as easy as one, two, days a week!

Keep On Low-Carbin’!
George Stella

For tons more low carb recipes, ideas, and support please visit:
www.StellaStyle.com
www.facebook.com/LowCarbingAmongFriends

Meat Lasagna

Recipe by George Stella / StellaStyle.com

Calories:350 |Fat: 19g |Protein: 40g |Fiber: 1g |Net Carbs:4g

Honest ingredients such as the perfect amount of spices, a saucy meat filling, and plenty of melted cheeses are truly what a good lasagna is all about. Excluding the pasta seemed the natural thing to do, and I guarantee you won’t even miss it!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups diced celery
  • ½ cup diced red onion
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 15 ounces tomato sauce (no sugar added)
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Cheese Filling

  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-
  2. Add the celery, red onion and ground beef and cook until browned. Drain off the excess fat with a spoon or turkey baster.
  3. Add the tomato sauce, garlic, garlic powder, salt, and pepper, and simmer for 2 more minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat.
  4. Mix the ingredients for the cheese filling together in a bowl, using only half of the mozzarella.
  5. Fill the bottom of a 13×9 baking dish with the meat filling and top with the cheese filling.
  6. Cover the top with the remaining 8 ounces of mozzarella cheese.
  7. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the top starts to become golden and bubbly.
  8. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing (the lasagna will hold together better).

Helpful Hints
You can also make this with half ground beef and half crumbled Italian sausage for even more flavor.

Low Carb Gingerbread Squares with Lemon Frosting

Recipe courtesy George Stella / StellaStyle.com

Prep Time 15 min/ Cook Time 25 min / Serves 9
Calories 233/Fat 20g/Protein 9g/Fiber 3g/Net Carbs 4

Whether it’s for dessert or with coffee in the morning as you run out the door, this traditional treat is an all time comfort dessert that my Mom made for me when I was a kid. It was a favorite of mine then with the delicious thick lemon frosting that I would ceremoniously lick off the top before devouring the spicy cake! Today, I can still have my cake and eat it too!

Shopping List

GINGERBREAD SQUARES

  • cooking oil spray
  • 1 +1⁄2 cups almond flour
  • 1⁄4 cup milled flax seed or flax seed meal
  • 2⁄3 cup sugar substitute
  • 1+1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1+1⁄2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (no sugar added)
  • 1⁄4 cup heavy cream; may use Almond milk
  • SPECIAL EQUIPMENT: 8 x 8 inch baking pan or dish

LEMON FROSTING

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1⁄2 cup sugar substitute
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. and spray the baking pan heavily with cooking oil.
  2. In a bowl whisk together the almond flour, milled flax seed, sugar substitute, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon and salt.
  3. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, vanilla and heavy cream until frothy. Combine the dry and wet ingredients and stir until combined.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for about 25 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean when stuck in the center. Cool completely before frosting with Lemon Frosting. Slice into 3 rows by 3 rows making 9 dessert portions or cut 5 by 5 to make 25 smaller party portions. Best served cold.

Lemon Frosting

  1. 1. Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well blended.
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By |2018-04-02T09:47:19+00:00April 2nd, 2018|Culinary Corner|0 Comments

About the Author:

George Stella
George Stella, a professional chef for more than 30 years, is the official spokesman for the Junior League’s Kids in the Kitchen program, which aims to help kids lead healthier lives by encouraging family cooking time. He has appeared on numerous television shows, including two seasons of his own show, Low Carb and Lovin’ It on the Food Network. His family continues to work together today and has written five healthy eating cookbooks. For more information, please visit StellaStyle.com.

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