Love and Hate

The crazy weather has continued this week. It has been very hot and the wind has been insane. Some of our windows sound like they are going to blow in. I can’t begin to imagine what it is like in a shack made of flimsy corrugated iron.

After a day of lazing about listening to the rain last Sunday, I decided to make a low carb pizza for our dinner. Norm went to the shops and got supplies. I cooked a big pot of tomato sauce starting with frying a chopped red pepper and a yellow pepper, celery and an onion as my base. Once they were cooked I added garlic and spices, a bottle of passata sauce, a splash of balsamic vinegar and Worcestershire sauce, a spoonful of bisto and a big blob of tomato paste. I left it to simmer while I prepped the other toppings. I fried sliced porcini mushrooms in garlic butter, chopped some green olives and cut the excess fat from the Sorreno ham. Once my sauce had thickened up we started the pizza crust.

I had all of the ingredients prepared as the cheese can become too goopy to mix quite quickly if you pause so I recommend that you are prepared so you don’t have to stop stirring. I measured out 2 cups of mozzarella and 2 tablespoons of cream cheese into a bowl, a beaten egg in another bowl and 3/4 a cup of almond flour.

I microwaved the cheese for a minute, removed and stirred, cooked for 30 seconds more and stirred, then cooked for 15 more seconds. I stirred again then added the egg and the almond flour and stirred again.

Norm put the dough between 2 sheets of baking paper and rolled the crust out into a large rectangle. We baked it for 10 minutes then flipped it and cooked for 10 more. We ladled on my tomato sauce then layered the porcini mushrooms, olives, cheese and then the salami and Serrano ham.

We sprinkled on baby spinach then popped it in the oven. Once the cheese melted we removed from the oven and cut it up and devoured it.

It was delicious and I am so pleased we discovered the crust recipe.

The next night I used the tomato sauce and mushrooms left over from the previous night’s pizza. I lightly browned 4 chicken breasts with the mushrooms in butter. I put the Chicken and porcini mushrooms into a glass dish and topped them with the tomato sauce and baked for 20 minutes then removed from the oven and topped the dish with mozzarella and baked for 15 more minutes. We served the chicken on zucchini noodles with a side of steamed broccoli.

I love using left over bits to make new meals and we did the same on Tuesday night. We had a rotisserie chicken in the fridge Norm had bought for lunches and he shredded the meat to make low carb chicken patties. We did not have all of the ingredients but we added what we had. Norm made the patties and I fried red cabbage, garlic mushrooms and steamed some asparagus to accompany it.

It was so delicious and all low carb and high fat thanks to the tons of butter I fried the vegetables in.

On Tuesday when going up the steps at work I realized my knees were not sore. My joints all ache and throb and going up the stairs usually hurts but the reduced sugar in my diet has meant that the pain is lessening. My body has excreted so much fluid! However the next day my knee pain was back. Maybe I need to keep a food diary to see what foods trigger it. Of course the elevator at work was out of operation on the day my knee pain came back.

Wednesday night we decided to try turnips as a potato ‘replacement’. Norm marinated the chops in teriyaki, soy and Worcestershire sauce.

I chopped the other half of the red cabbage from the night before and fried it in butter and balsamic then topped with boiled water to soften and simmered til the water cooked down. I peeled and chopped the turnips and heated some coconut oil in a roasting pan. Once the oil was hot I added the turnips to the roasting pan and coated them in the hot oil. As I had no previous experience with turnips I assumed they would take as long as potatoes and I cooked them for 20 minutes before putting in the chops. The turnips cooked fast and so we had to wait for the chops. Next time we will put them in the oven at the same time and maybe even roast them in the same pan.

They did not taste like potatoes but they were nice. We will definitely try these again when doing roast meat.

On Thursday Norm had a neighborhood security group meeting and was going to finish very late so we got a takeaway eggplant parmigiana from Casarrechio in Hout Bay. It was yummy as always. It is not 100% low carb as the eggplant is breaded but it is better than a plate of pasta or a pizza so we made the best choice we could.

Fridays are usually a take away night but we decided to just make something quick and easy at home. It was 30 deg Celsius when I left work so we made a bacon and halloumi salad. Norm is a master at halloumi and so he grilled the bacon and fried the halloumi while I made a salad out of gem lettuce, baby tomatoes, radishes, cucumber and avocado. I also made a homemade blue cheese dressing using blue cheese, fromage frais, fresh cream, garlic and a bit of milk to thin it out.

I love this salad and am happy to have it every week, it is so quick and easy and tasty.

One of the things that helps keep me away from consuming bags full of M&Ms is my nightly bowl of banting chocolate ice cream from our local Hout Bay ice cream shop, Ice Dream. Their ice cream is all home made Italian gelato and is amazing. The owner went onto low carb eating and they started making it to sell. It’s my nightly treat and stops me from feeling deprived.

Saturday I made plans to meet Bronwyn at our fave hang out, Hout Bay Manor. When I arrived Bjorn was there and Melodie arrived shortly after with Bronwyn coming soon after that. I hadn’t seen anyone since I got back from the US so it was great to catch up.

We all ordered coffees and perused the many menus, they have an all day breakfast menu, a lunch menu and an Asian menu. Bjorn had already eaten so he just had a coffee. Mel had to go off to work and so she only ordered a snack and she chose the prawn toast from the Asian menu.

Bronwyn chose the crispy fried duck: Deboned & sliced served with stir fried vegetables in a delicious oyster sauce with chilli, garlic & herbs.

I tasted a slice of the duck and it was delicious! I will order that next time I go for lunch.

I had not eaten yet and did not feel lunch ready so I went for the El Pixo breakfast: Sweetcorn fritters made with feta, chilli & spring onions, avocado, streaky bacon, 2 poached eggs, grilled baby tomatoes, fresh coriander and a wee spoon of chilli, olive oil and lemon zest and a wedge of lemon.

My eggs were soft and my bacon crispy. The kitchen did not serve the egg punctured, I impaled it when making it photo ready. Oops. It was all low carb other than the sweetcorn fritter but it was so delicious.

It was a lovely sunny morning but as the day progressed it started to drizzle with rain and as we were sitting in the courtyard we decided to move inside. Bjorn and Melodie both left and Bronwyn and a I settled into one of the couches in the hotel.

It is such a beautiful venue with a peaceful energy. We spent hours chatting and catching up. Bronwyn and I get into some deep conversations and yesterday was no exception. We did not solve the world’s problems but we touched on most of them! We finally decided to toddle off after 5pm. Our lunches always seem to last for 5 hours. It was lovely to see her.

Norm said he was starving when I got home and despite just leaving ‘lunch’ the eating part was hours before. I was craving sushi and went a bit off plan on the low carb journey and had sushi. I ordered prawn roses, salmon roses and cucumber roses topped with prawns.

It was delicious and fresh and really hit the spot.

Norm and I have started watching The Messiah this week and we are really enjoying it.

We briefly discussed the series at lunch and it was interesting to hear the different perspectives of each of us. I am only halfway through so no spoilers please but I do not see it as anti-Christian or pro any other religion. I see the Messiah character as trying to show that there should be no concept of disparate religions, we all are connected. Regardless of our beliefs, love and inclusiveness are all that should matter. The series has received both good and bad ratings and the acting is not the best but I can ignore that in order to receive the message of the series.

This week there was a large protest at the US Embassy. Members of the South African Communist Party (SACP), an alliance partner of the governing African National Congress (ANC), gathered outside the United States embassy, in Pretoria, to protest against US President Donald Trump’s treatment of Iran. They were protesting the assassination of the Middle East’s most revered military veteran, General Qasem Soleimani.

They chanted “One American, One Bullet”.

Trump has made Americans the most hated people in the world, his core belief is about Hate. I detest that corrupt, racist, misogynistic moron so much I cannot even put it into words.

The other global drama is the Coronavirus. This has caused so much fear due to the risk of it spreading to the rest of the world. I hope that they manage to contain it and treat the victims to reduce any further deaths. I am glad I am not flying anywhere soon!

We are finally making progress on our project at work. The client is chomping at the bit for the final report but our delays are due to the client not progressing the contract. We could not employ a developer until we had confirmed work for him. I am a bit less stressed in regards to work.

Today is going to be a lazy day, it is nice and cool today as it is bright but overcast. I gave the kitchen a scrub and Norm is ironing. The pups are all snoozing and quiet for a change. It’s very peaceful.

I hope you have all had a wonderful weekend and I wish you a great week next week. Until next time, Kisses from the Kitten xoxoxoxo

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