Lowcarbezine! 11 April 2001

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Hey, Gang!

Lots and lots of recipes this issue!  Plus an explanation for all of you
new folks who keep asking me why I'm wary about soy, an intro to an
experiment I'm doing, and -- well, lots of stuff!

Read on!



All contents copyright 2001 by Hold the Toast Press.  All commercial
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Now To Annoy My Sponsors

Well, it's officially happened.  Low carb dieting is a major part of the
American scene.  How do I know?  Because there's now about as much
processed low carb specialty food available as there is low fat
specialty food -- even Snackwells have gotten in on the act; they now
are producing sugar free cookies.  (Not low carb, you understand, but
sugar free -- clearly, they've caught the shifting of the wind.)

And folks are buying the stuff by the carload, expensive though it may
be -- and it *is* expensive, often more expensive than low fat specialty
products, because proteins and healthy fats used in low carb specialty
products are far more expensive than the sugars and starches used in low
fat specialty products.  As folks buy more and more of these new
specialty products, many of them decide that a low carb diet is just too
expensive -- after all, you can spend $4 on a bottle of ketchup! -- and
drop out.

This is a shame.  After all, *none* of these low carb specialty products
are essential to eating a healthy low carb diet.  Indeed, when I started
eating this way almost six years ago, none of this stuff was available
-- and I wrote in my book that one of the real benefits of a low carb
diet was that it practically *forced* you to eat *real* food -- meat,
poultry, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, vegetables, and some fruit -- instead
of processed food products.  No more
-- now you can have a low carb soy protein muffin for breakfast, a
protein bar for lunch, and low carb pasta for dinner, if you want to pay
for it, and a lot of people do.

You see, a whole lot of people seem to be trying to make their low carb
diets identical to their old way of eating.  Personally, I think this is
a bad idea.  Why? 

For a few reasons.  First of all, as I mentioned, it's needlessly
expensive, and you need find a way of eating that you can live with
*forever*.  Few of us are going to be willing to spend the same kind of
money we'd spend on eating at a good restaurant to eat processed,
packaged stuff at home -- forever.  

Secondly, very few of the low carb processed foods are as low carb as
meat, eggs, cheese, and low carb vegetables.  You'll be able to eat more
food if you eat *real* low carb foods, and you'll be more full and feel
more satisfied.  Furthermore, there is a great deal of controversy about
some of the ingredients in the low carb specialty foods.  Glycerine,
used in all low carb protein bars that I know of -- it makes them moist
-- may very well be metabolized as a carbohydrate; I've had readers
report that these bars invariably knock them out of ketosis.  And while
the research I've been able to find on the polyols -- maltitol,
sorbitol, lactitol, and the like -- used to sweeten the low carb candies
on the market says that they are barely absorbed, and do not raise blood
sugar, Doc Atkins, at least, is adamant that these *do* count as carbs. 
If you're hoping to stay in ketosis, and you're eating any of these
things regularly, watch your keto strips carefully to see how your body
is reacting.

Third, despite the fact that some of the low carb processed foods are
fortified with vitamins and minerals, in general they don't offer as
much nutritional value as real food does.  It's hard to beat a steak or
a chicken breast or some salmon, or an omelet, plus a big salad, with
some berries or
cantaloupe for dessert, for positive nutritional impact.  And no matter
how many vitamins and minerals are put in processed food -- and
certainly I'd rather they were put in than not put in -- they're sure to
be missing many of the positive food elements that we simply haven't
identified yet.  Nature knows how to make food far better than people

Numero Four-o, if you're eating pretty much the same way you were before
you went low carb, only substituting low carb specialty products for the
high carb stuff, you're not learning how to eat low carb anywhere but at
home.  This is a real handicap; you're going to cave in every time you
eat away from home, because you haven't learned how to have a meal
without bread, or pasta, or whatever.

And finally, if Ray Audette, author of Neanderthin, is right, and part
of what's happening with carb intolerance diseases is actually an immune
system reaction to substances which were foreign to the human diet until
the past ten millennia or so, then these foods, with their additives and
such, may be as much a part of the problem as a part of the solution.

What the whole thing boils down to is trying to change without
changing.  Sorry, can't be done.  Learning to live low carb really *is*
a big change, and your time and energy will be far more productively
spent learning how to put together tasty menus of real low carb foods
than in working extra hours to pay for lots of processed stuff, or
scouring the stores for low carb bread.

Does this mean I think you should never, ever eat this stuff?  Heck, no,
or I wouldn't review it, and I wouldn't carry the ads for it.  I think
low carb specialty foods have a place in our diet, and I think it's a
very nice thing that we have them to add some variety, to deal with
cravings, to make special occasions easier, to ease the transition to
low carb eating. I think it's great that we have condiments that we can
eat by the tablespoonful, instead of the half-teaspoon.  I hope that
you're all eating sugar free chocolate instead of Cadbury's creme eggs,
and sugar free marshmallows instead of Peeps, this Easter.  And if you
use up some of the leftover Easter ham by making a ham pot pie with a
crust made of low carb bake mix, I won't object.  

I just don't want you blowing the kid's college money, and your chance
at a long term healthy diet, eating these things  at every meal.  And I
don't want you ending up eating as much processed low carb stuff as you
used to eat processed high carb stuff.  Use these products, sure.  Just
realize that change is change, and roll with it.


Now you can make low carb biscuits, pancakes, waffles, shortcakes, and
MORE with NO SOY!  

Plus, new low price on CarboLite chocolate bars!

We now have _How I Gave Up My Low Fat Diet and Lost Forty Pounds!_ 


Why I'm Not a Soy Fan

Whenever I mention that I prefer to minimize my consumption of soy
products, or mention that there is negative information coming in about
soy, I can expect at least a handful of emails asking me why.  Soy is so
hot currently, and the US government is pushing it so hard, (not to
mention the marketing people) that
suggesting that soy is not only not a panacea for all ills, but may
actually be harmful, really startles people.  Long time readers know my
reasons for jumping off the soy bandwagon, but the folks who have joined
us more recently -- and there are a lot of you!-- don't.  So for the
benefit of those of you who are puzzled by my reluctance to endorse soy,
here goes:

* It has been established for *decades* that soy can cause thyroid
dysfunction, especially goiter.  There is some reason to believe that
soy can actually cause thyroid failure.  A malfunctioning thyroid gland
is an unhappy thing, especially for those who are trying to lose weight.

* A research study coming out of Hawaii last year showed a straight-line
correlation between the amount of tofu consumed in middle age, and the
degree of brain function deterioration in old age.  Researchers theorize
that soy phytoestrogens bind to receptors in the brain meant for the
estrogen a person's body creates, blocking proper estrogen use by the
brain.  If this is the case, all unfermented soy products would be a
problem, not just tofu.  This would include soy milk, soy protein
powder, soy cheese, soy burgers, etc. 

* A British study about six months ago turned up the fact that
vegetarian mothers have five times the risk of non-vegetarian mothers of
giving birth to boy babies with hypospadias, a genital defect where the
urethra is not long enough, and exits the penis along the base, instead
of at the tip.  While the reason for this is unclear, the front-running
theory is that the high estrogen levels in soy-based vegetarian diets
are the cause.

* In 1999, Daniel Sheehan, director of the Estrogen Base Program,
Division of Genetic and Reproductive Toxicology, in the Food and Drug
Administration's (FDA) National Center for Toxicological Research told
the FDA's Office of Special Nutritionals that the Center for
Toxicological Research disagreed with the FDA's proposal to allow health
claims of reduced heart disease risk on soy products.  Sheehan states
that soy isoflavones, the heavily touted soy phytoestrogens, have been
demonstrated to be toxic to the human thyroid, and also in "tissues that
are sensitive to estrogen".  Sheehan also stated that soy isoflavones
can increase risk of abnormal brain and reproductive tract development
if consumed during pregnancy.

* Also in 1999, the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition refused
to grant GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) status for soy protein. 
The petition for GRAS status was denied because adverse effects were not
adequately reported by Archer Daniels Midland, the agribusiness
corporation applying for GRAS status.

* There is some speculation -- and at this point, that is all it is --
that soy may raise the risk of some kinds of cancer.  This, of course,
is in contrast to the speculation that soy can *prevent* some kinds of

* There is no question that soy products interfere with mineral
absorption.  They are very high in chemicals called "phytates" which
bind with minerals and prevent their absorption.  Phytates are present
in other plant foods as well, especially whole grains, and may be the
reason why the bones and teeth of early farming peoples show that the
beginning of grain and bean agriculture resulted in a drop in stature,
and the thinning of bones and weakening of teeth.  Soy phytates are
different from some other phytates, however, in that even long cooking
does not get rid of them.

* Most soy grown in the USA -- except for specifically labeled organic
soy -- has been genetically modified.  Perhaps the most
ubiquitous genetic modification is the "Round-up Ready soy bean" -- this
means that the soybean has been genetically modified to be immune to
Round-up, Monsanto's top-selling herbicide.  This has a couple of
ramifications -- first of all, Round-up ready soybeans are regularly
bathed in Round-up herbicide, which is incorporated into the plant --
and the bean -- itself.  Monsanto claims it's safe, but it makes me
pretty edgy.  Also, Round-up Ready soy beans have a much higher estrogen
level than unmodified soybeans.  There is some speculation that these
super-estrogen beans are part of the reason for ever-earlier puberty in
American children.

I know what you're thinking -- "But Asian folks have been eating soy
forever!"  Not true, in a couple of ways.  First of all, soy has only
been part of the Asian diet for several hundred years, a far shorter
time than most grains and beans -- and all grains and beans have to be
considered newcomers to the human diet.  Secondly, Glycine soja, the
soybean originally cultivated by Asian folks, is a different species
than the highly hybridized Glycine max, the soybean now in use.  Among
other things, Glycine max has been bred for higher protein concentration
-- which sounds good, but if soy protein is a problem, then higher
levels of it are a worse problem.  Breeding is also suspected to have
increased the levels of isoflavones, which the soy plant apparently
produces as a protection against pests.

Also, Americans tend to overestimate the quantity of soy traditionally
in Asian diets.  An American who drinks soy milk, uses soy protein
powder, and eats soy cheese, tofu, and veggie burgers is likely to be
eating far more soy than Asian populations generally have.  The problem
can be even worse for children, because they're so small -- by some
estimates, an infant drinking soy formula can ingest the estrogen
equivalent of five birth control pills a day.  Small children drinking
soy milk instead of cow's milk can easily get enough soy to cause
permanent autoimmune thyroid disease.

Finally, much of the soy consumed in Asian diets is in fermented forms
-- miso, tempeh, natto, and of course soy sauce.  The fermentation
process destroys the phytoestrogens, which means that these products are
safer:  The Hawaiian study linking tofu to dementia showed no problems
with miso consumption.

All of this is a real bummer for us low carbers, since soy products are
very useful as substitutes for many of the higher carb products we've
eliminated from our diets.  I've been experimenting; I've found that
rice protein powder is the best substitute for soy powder in non-sweet
recipes --  I have Nutribiotics brand, which has about 1.5 grams of
usable carb per tablespoon; I've heard that other brands are higher
carb, so read the labels.  In sweet recipes, I've long since switched
from soy powder to vanilla whey protein powder.  I do still use tofu
every now and then; it's hard to make hot-and-sour soup without it.  And
Keto Crisp, a soy based product much like Rice Krispies, makes such good
cookie bars it's hard to resist making them every now and then.  But I
try to keep my consumption of soy products (except soy sauce, which
isn't a problem) to a minimum.

If you're concerned about soy, you will need to be careful about low
carb specialty products, since so many of them use soy -- indeed, many
of them boast about their soy content, and even their isoflavone
content, on the label.  Personally, I consider soy to be a negative, not
a positive, and will only eat these products every so often, no matter
how well I like them -- and I like some of them pretty well.  I do
always note soy content in product reviews, so you can all make your own
decisions about whether a product is tempting enough to be worth risking
a little soy.

Of course, this bad news about soy is most problematic for low carb
vegetarians, and particularly low carb vegans -- there simply are not
very many good low carb sources of complete vegan protein other than
soy.  My best recommendation for low carb vegans -- assuming that you're
vegan because of ethical/philosophical/religious convictions, which I'm
not about to argue with -- is that you eat primarily tempeh, natto, and
miso, instead of tofu, soy cheese, soy meat analogues, TVP, soy milk,
and other unfermented soy products.  Seitan, made from wheat gluten, is
often pretty low carb, although it's protein quality is not as good as
that of soy, and many people are sensitive to gluten.   Up your
consumption of nuts and seeds -- almonds have the best protein quality
of the nuts -- and eat a wide variety of them.  

The same advice goes for low carb lacto-ovo vegetarians, but these folks
will also, of course, want to eat eggs, cheese, and yogurt, and
therefore have far fewer worries about getting ample protein on their
low carb diets.  Also a very good idea for the low carb lacto-ovo
vegetarian is purchasing Diana Lee's _Baking Low Carb_, so you can eat
high protein muffins and sweet breads and such; this won't work for
vegans since Diana's recipes use eggs and whey protein.  (Baking Low
Carb: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0967998808/lowcarbohysoluti
)  It's also good to know that the low carb specialty foods people are
catching on; there is now a soy-free low carb bake mix.  I haven't tried
it yet, but I'll be reviewing it soon.  In the meanwhile, if you'd like
to try it, it's available from Low Carb Grocery:
http://www.lowcarbgrocery.com .

So that's why I'm not a big soy fan.  Hopefully that will settle the
issue until I pick up another couple-thousand subscribers!

For more info:



At http://www.lowcarbpharmacy.com you get a free copy of Dana
Carpender's Low Carb Book when you order 4 bottles of the carb blocker


Regarding Last Week's Special Notice

I got some feedback regarding some of the Passover recipes I sent out in
a special notice last week -- a reader pointed out that some of them
weren't strictly kosher.  This is so; but then, I didn't write any of
these recipes.  Barbo Gold, of Barbo's Diet Kitchen, was the source for
these, and since Barbo has also sent me a recipe for mock matzo balls
using pork rinds (below), I'm pretty darned positive that Barbo doesn't
keep kosher.  However, she's certainly going to have recipes that are
more traditionally Jewish than anything I would come up with, since I'm
so WASPy it's kind of scary.

I have the feeling that cooking a Seder which was both quite low carb
and also strictly kosher-for-Passover would be very, very hard -- after
all, you're combining two different sets of limitations, each ruling out
large groups of foods.  If you observe kashrut, I'm thinking you'd do
best to just declare your Seder an Indulgence meal.  However, if someone
is reading this who has some good ideas for a truly kosher low carb
Passover menu, please, please, *please* send them along!!  

In the meanwhile, here are a couple more recipes Barbo sent along --
Thanks, Barbo!!

Matzo Balls for Chicken Soup Recipe By     : Barbo from Barbo's Diet
Serving Size  : 12   Preparation Time :0:00 
Categories    : Breads                           Soups   Amount  
Measure         Ingredient -- Preparation Method 
--------        ------------  -------------------------------- 
3/4  cup        pork rinds -- 0 carbs 
1/4  cup        Matzo Ball Mix 
2 extra large   eggs 
1               egg yolk 
2 tablespoons   canola oil 
1/4 teaspoon    black pepper 
2 quarts        chicken broth -Place matzo  mix and crushed pork 
                               rinds in a deep bowl. 
-Add everything else and mix well. 
-Chill for about 1/2 hour. 
-Remove and make 12 little round balls 
-Keep chilled until you are ready to cook them. 
-Bring the  soup stock to boil, then add balls and when stock begins to
place  a tight fitting lid on top and simmer slowly for abut 45 minutes.
I added my veggies and cooked chicken chunks  the last 10 minutes. 
-12 matzo balls @ 3 carbs each & 8.7 gr. protein  no dietary fiber 

Title: Aunt Sadie's Brisket of Beef Categories: Main dish, Beef, Jewish, 
Holiday Yield: 8 servings 
3 Large onions sliced paper thin (3 onions is not a typo)
8 Whole allspice 
Salt and pepper 
Garlic powder 
5,6 lb. brisket; Flat cut  

>>> The following is my favorite brisket recipe and it really does come from 
my Aunt Sadie's kitchen: 
Remove any excess fat from brisket, but leave a little on top. Place one 
half of the onions on bottom of pan. Season the brisket with a little
pepper, garlic powder and lots of Hungarian paprika. Place brisket on
top of 
onions, then other half of onions and allspice on top of the brisket.
and roast in a 300- 325 degree F. oven for 3 hours. Test your brisket
when it is fork tender, take it out. Let it cool and then slice it very
Strain juice and either thicken it with a little cornstarch or serve it
jus. You will have a very dark brown juice. NOTE: *Best when made one
day in 
advance. Aunt Sadie almost always served this with savory noodle kugel.
also serve it with roasted, boiled or mashed potatoes. (Dana's Note: Low
carbers could used cauliflower puree) Use a good roasting  pan with a
lid that fits well or covered with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Spray 
pan and inside of lid with Pam. MMMMM Discard the whole allspice (never
used powdered allspice) 
*When it is cool, slice it very thin across the grain.  Fix the gravy. 
Lay slices in a re-heatable type pan and lay gravy on bottom then
gravy and slices until you have used it all up.  Cover tightly and
over night. 

At http://www.lowcarbnutrition.com it's cheaper by the dozen when you
order! Please feel free to mix-n-match the items when you place your
order. Everybody loves variety and you will love the savings! Take a
look at my latest development -- lowcarb bake mix that is soy free!


The Things I Do For You!

As I write this, I'm also busily sticking holes in my fingers, and all
in your service.  

Here's the deal:  I've had several inquiries about starch blockers, but
the medical research available on them is minimal.  (For what it's
worth, the one article I was able to find from a peer-reviewed journal
suggested that they do, indeed, work, at least to some extent.)  I
needed hard data!  So I bought a blood glucose monitor. (Don't you think
that will make an interesting business deduction?)  I measured my blood
sugar on an empty stomach -- dead normal at 101 -- and then ate a
bowlful of brown rice.  I'll measure my sugar again off and on for the
next couple of hours, recording the results.  Then, later in the week,
I'll do the same thing, only I'll take a starch blocker capsule first. 
If they do, indeed, prevent the digestion and absorption of starches, my
blood sugar level should stay much lower the second time around.

Of course, more data would be better; I think I'll repeat the experiment
with bread.  And I'd like to get another person in on it.  Think my
husband's devotion to the 'zine extends to having holes pierced in his
fingers?  Stay tuned...


Reader Review of _How I Gave Up My Low Fat Diet and Lost Forty Pounds!_

(I got this post at Christmas time; just getting around to publishing it

Dana, I've been lax this season about sending holiday greetings to the
people I care about, and wanted to make up for it.  I know we've never
met, but I feel I know you well because of your book and your
e-newsletter, and as a result, I have come to care for you - because you
helped me change my life!

I've never been obese, but I've been on a permanent weight loss/gain
yo-yo for years.  Up 30, down 30, etc.  On top of the frustrations that
accompany being heavy, or avoiding the foods I love and starving myself
to be thinner, I had a permanent sense of hunger and fatigue.  I swear,
I could eat 24 hours a day in my former way of life.  And after each
meal, naptime!

Until I read (and read and read) your book, I didn't understand what the
foods I was eating were *really* doing to my body, beyond adding inches
and pounds. Now that I've given up my low fat diet, I am also 40 pounds
thinner (from Feb 2000  to August 2000).  But I don't have a scale to
gauge how much better my life is now that I'm never hungry and never
tired.  I can barely put into words how it feels to go on a business
trip and LOSE 2 pounds after eating everything I want.  Or how it feels
to look at a pie and think, blech, that looks 

I have learned from your book more about how my body reacts to foods,
and  feel more in control over myself, than I ever did using low-fat
approaches  to eating. I can safely say that even if the weight had not
come off (and  stayed off) with this way of eating, I would be thankful
for your book  because of the radical  improvement in how I FEEL about
eating and how my body feels after I eat.

So, happy holidays, and thanks for helping me change my life.  I
strongly recommend your book to anyone who wants to understand how foods
impact their bodies and minds, and who wants to feel confident and in
control over their eating, and in turn, over their bodies!

Kara in Chicago

Thanks, Kara!

If you'd like to read more reader reviews of _How I Gave Up My Low Fat
Diet and Lost Forty Pounds!_, you'll find twenty five of them at:

If you'd like to read the first chapter of the book for FREE, plus find
a bunch of other useful low carb info, visit:
http://www.holdthetoast.com .  You can also see my smiling face and my

Or, for that matter, you can visit
http://www.webbalah.net/carbsmart.html , and order
_How I Gave Up My Low Fat Diet and Lost Forty Pounds_ from Carb Smart,
where it's at a discount.  Low Carb Grocery has it at a discount, too --
http://www.lowcarbgrocery.com .  So does Just Say No To Carbs, at
http://www.justsaynotocarbs.com .

If you'd like to buy the book from a bookstore, you'll probably have to
special order it.  If you're in the USA, this shouldn't be a problem --
just tell them that you want to order _How I Gave Up My Low Fat Diet and
Lost Forty Pounds!_ by Dana Carpender, and that the ISBN is
0-9668831-0-1.  You could also tell them that they can order it through
Baker and Taylor; one of the country's biggest book wholesalers.  We do
ship to Canadian bookstores.

If you're outside of the US, your best bet is to order from Amazon.com.
We can ship internationally from here at Hold the Toast, too, but we're
not set up for it big-time like Amazon is.  If you're a book wholesaler
outside the US and interested in carrying _How I Gave Up My Low Fat Diet
and Lost Forty Pounds!_, we'd love to hear from you!


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Low Carb Spotlight Foods of the Week!

Okay, most of this article is a repeat from last Easter.  But most of
you weren't reading Lowcarbezine! last Easter!  I'll add just one note: 
All ham has sugar added, but how much sugar varies quite a lot from
brand to brand.  Read your labels, and get the lowest sugar ham you can

By the time next Monday rolls around, a goodly percentage of you are
going to be knee-deep in leftover ham and hard boiled eggs.  (The
results of the great Easter dinner poll?  Ham, by a landslide.)  So
let's give some thought to what to do with them.

Ham is wonderful, but it's also *BIG*.  _The Joy of Cooking_ defines
eternity as "Two people and a ham". ;-D  But it's delicious and
versatile!  Here's some ideas:

* Make ham and cheese UnSandwiches.  This is when you take a slice of
ham and a slice of cheese, and sandwich the mustard and the mayo between
them, then simply stuff them in your face.  I love this.  If you're
feeling particularly ambitious, you could wrap the whole thing in a
lettuce leaf.  Hardly essential, though.

* Serve frizzled ham with eggs for breakfast -- or for that matter, for
a fast, easy supper.  Steamed broccoli would be good with this, if you
ask me, and you did!

* Slice the ham and frizzle it in a skillet.  When the first side is
cooked, turn it, put mustard on each piece, and some cheese -- swiss,
cheddar, whatever you like.  It will melt while the second side browns.
Again, a fast, easy crowd pleaser.

* Make ham salad.  This can even be ham and egg salad, using up two
leftovers at once!  Diced ham, chopped hard boiled eggs, diced celery,
maybe some diced pickle (no sweet pickles, of course!) or green pepper,
or a little chopped onion, mixed with mayonnaise to taste.  Very nice!

* Easier yet, slivered or cubed cold ham and/or chopped hard boiled eggs
make a tossed salad into a meal.  You might even throw in some shredded
cheese.  This makes a fine take along lunch -- take the dressing
separately, in a small container, or your salad will be soggy by

Here's a great dish using ham that's good for breakfast, lunch or
supper, or even a company brunch:

Ham and Cheese Puff

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray a medium sized casserole dish with non-stick
cooking spray, or butter it generously.

5 eggs
3 tablespoons soy powder or rice protein powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt or Vege-Sal
1 cup small curd cottage cheese
1/4 lb. ham -- leftover ham or deli ham, doesn't matter.
1/4 lb. cheddar cheese
1 green pepper
1 can mushrooms, well drained
2 tablespoons grated horseradish

Using a food processor with the S-blade in place, grind the ham, cheese,
green pepper, and mushrooms together until fairly finely chopped -- no
chunks of pepper or ham bigger than, say, 1/2 inch cube.  I'd recommend
using the pulse control to do this.  In a large bowl, beat the eggs
well.  Add the soy powder or rice powder, baking powder, and salt, and
beat well
again.  Next, beat in the cottage cheese and the horseradish, then the
ham/cheese/vegetable mixture.  Pour it into the casserole, and bake for
about 40 minutes.  It should be puffy and set, but still jiggle just a
bit in the middle when you shake it.  This reheats well.

Depending on what brand of cottage cheese, cheddar cheese, and ham you
use, this should have about 33 g. of usable carbohydrate in the entire
recipe.  This is at least five servings, so figure just over 6 g. per

* Here's a fast skillet dinner using leftover ham:

Sour Cream Ham

Sliver up enough ham to feed the troops.  Chop an onion, too -- a little
one if you're only feeding a couple of you, a bigger one if you're
feeding four or five.  Saute them together in a little oil or butter
until the onion is limp.  Add a drained can of mushrooms or two (again,
depending on how many you're feeding.)  (You may use fresh mushrooms if
you like; they're certainly better.  I just always have canned mushrooms
in the house.  If you use fresh ones, wipe them, slice them, and fry
them with the ham and onion.)  Then stir in enough sour cream to coat
everything well -- start with a half a cup, and go by taste.

You, you low carb dieter you, you eat this as is.  You can serve it over
brown rice for the troops, if you like.  Obviously, with a loose sort of
recipe like this, I can't give you an exact carb count, but assuming you
picked the lowest carb ham at the market, it should be quite low.
Mushrooms are very low carb, so is sour cream; the only appreciable
amount of carb comes from the onion.

And if you're still eating ham two weeks from now, you might consider
buying a *half* ham next Easter!

How about hard boiled eggs?  Personally, I like 'em cold, with a bit of
salt, and they sure are a quick and easy take along breakfast or lunch.
Here's some more ideas:

* You could make "technicolored egg salad", so called because a little
of the dye always seems to seep through the shell and color the white in
spots.  I like celery, scallions, green pepper, and mayonnaise in my egg
salad. My mom adds sliced green olives.  I surely wouldn't argue about a
thing like that.

* Hard boiled eggs are also a classic addition to spinach salad.  Fresh
raw spinach, a few chopped scallions or a bit of sweet red onion, tossed
with a good vinaigrette dressing (I've recommended it before -- Paul
Newman's Olive Oil and Vinegar is great, and very low carb), and topped
with chopped hard boiled eggs and crumbled bacon.  Yum.  Hey, you could
use diced ham instead of the bacon if you wanted!

* Make your favorite low carb meat loaf recipe.  Press half of the meat
mixture into the loaf pan.  Peel three or four eggs (depends on the size
of your eggs and the size of your pan) and arrange the whole, peeled
eggs down the middle.  Top with the rest of the meat loaf mixture and
press firmly in place.  Bake as usual.  Each slice will have a pretty
white-and-yellow round of egg in the middle.

* Don't forget good old deviled eggs.  These seem to be universally
popular; every time I show up at a potluck or church event with a
platter full of deviled eggs, people say, "Ooooo, deviled eggs!", and
there's never a single one left.  I like mine simple -- I peel the eggs
and cut them in half, turning the yolks out into a bowl.  I mash the
yolks with enough mayonnaise to make them good and moist, a good dollop
of spicy brown mustard, and a little salt or Vege-Sal and pepper, and
that's *it*.  Stuff it back into the whites, and devour -- oh, I
sprinkle them with a little paprika if I'm trying to make them look
really nice.  You may add other things, if you like -- curry powder,
worcestershire sauce, cayenne, what have you -- but I consider this
gilding the lilly.  I like them simple.  If you haven't done this
before, and you're improvising, remember the basic rule that it's easy
to add more of a flavoring, and hard to take it out.  Add things like
mustard, salt, and pepper in modest quantities, and *taste*.

Oh, and regarding hard boiled eggs:  Eggs that are a week old are better
for hard boiling than fresh ones, and plunging them into cold water as
soon as they're done helps them peel easily as well.  But I've just
heard of a new trick, and I thought I'd pass it on:  Salt the water you
hard boil your eggs in quite heavily -- use a couple of tablespoons of
salt if you're boiling two dozen eggs.  Supposed to make the shells
positively stick proof.


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Dana W. Carpender

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