suggestions, recipes, and ideas for staying low-carb

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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Low-Carb Cocktails

With New Year's Eve being tomorrow, people will be partying the night away. If you are attending or even hosting a party, you may be interested to know that there are some mixed drinks that aren't full of carbs. When you are trying to stay low-carb, it's definitely best to only consume alcohol in moderation. This doesn't mean that you can't have any alcohol. You just need to choose the healthier ones.

Here is a low-carb version of a margarita. These taste great, and your guests probably won't notice the difference.

1 jigger (1.5 oz) tequila
2 Tablespoons (1 oz) lime juice
1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons) water
1/4 teaspoon orange extract
1 Tablespoon's worth artificial sweetener
Ice - small handful
Margarita salt or kosher salt

Preparation:Wet the rim of the glass and dip into a small plate of salt.Combine all ingredients. You can either serve it over ice or blended in a blender.

This is a recipe for a low-carb strawberry daiquiri. This is a great sweet treat for a party.

1/2 cup sliced strawberries
1 Tablespoon lime juice
I jigger rum (1.5 oz)
Sweetener to taste
Small handful of ice

Preparation:Put in blender and push the button. Serve immediately.

Happy New Year, everyone. Here's to making 2009 low-carb.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Great Blog

I recently found a low-carb blog that is full of recipes. It's always helpful to have as many resources as possible when you are going low-carb. I like this blog because of how versatile it is. It gives information for various recipes. It's a lot like this blog because of the fact that it also has suggestions and ideas for low-carbing. Maybe that's why I liked it so much. Go visit The Pitter Patter of Losing Pounds, and you'll be glad you did.

Crock Pot Soup

Even though the weather here in Florida isn't really calling for soup, it is winter, and traditionally, this is a soup time of year. This chicken soup has a Mexican taste to it. The carb count is pretty low, and the protein count is high. It's a great meal for ending the day. It also heats up nicely as leftovers, and makes a convenient lunch at work tomorrow.

You will need:
1 14 ounce can of chicken broth
1 small can of Ro Tel Diced Tomatoes with Lime Juice & Cilantro
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 cup frozen stir fry (yellow, green, red peppers)

Toss all of the ingredients into your crock pot. Cover and cook on low heat for 7 hours. If you are pressed for time, you can set it to high for 3 1/2 hours. I like to sprinkle shredded cheese on the top of the soup while it's still hot. It melts, and adds great flavor to the soup. You can also put a scoop of sour cream on top. If you stir the sour cream in, it will thicken the soup.

This is a great way to use up some leftover chicken.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Beware the Flu

With the holiday season also being infamous for beginning the cold and flu season, it's great to have a low-carb soup recipe. The following recipe is an easy to make, 15 minute chicken soup. The ingredient list is short, and the directions are simple. Make this for when you are sick, or when you just want some delicious soup.

You will need the following ingredients:

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon diced shallot
1 tablespoon grated carrot
3 ounces cooked chicken breast (shredded)
1 and 1/2 cup chicken broth

Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and carrot and cook until the shallot has softened. This should take 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chicken and cook the mixture, stirring it for about 1 minute. Add in the broth and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the chicken is heated through. This should take 2 to 3 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

I like to add some shredded mozzarella cheese to the top of mine. That is completely optional, but it adds a great flavor.

How to Survive the Holiday Parties

Are you looking for a low-carb idea to take with you to a holiday party? At this time of year, it's inevitable that you are going to be invited to some kind of get together. The first thing that you always ask after being invited is "What can I bring?" If you are a fellow low-carber, you know that it's tough to stay low-carb when you are attending these parties. It seems that people only know how to make sweets at this time of year.

Here are a few tips on how to stay low-carb, but not have to avoid going to holiday gatherings:

1. Eat something high in protein before you head out the door. This will help you to not evereat at the party.

2. Go straight to the vegetable tray. This is a much better option than pigs in a blanket, or cracker and seafood dip.

3. Look for meatballs. Often meatballs make their way to holiday parties. Even though they sometimes have sauce that isn't low-carb, the protein in the meatballs can help to offset the carb count.

4. Offer to bring something, even if they say it isn't necessary. Don't overstep your boundaries, but let the host know that you make great deviled eggs, or that it's tradition for you to supply a party with a cheese tray. This way you are guaranteed something low-carb and high in protein.

These tips can help you to avoid the average 7 pound weight gain people expect during the holiday season.

Low-Carb Eggnog

If you like eggnog, keep reading. If you try to stay low-carb, eggnog is not really an option. There is an eggnog that you can have and still stay low-carb. You have to make it on your own, but is you are an eggnog drinker, this will be worth it to you.

You will need:
4 large eggs
2 cups milk (I like Carb Countdown by Hood)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup sweetener (I like Splenda)
1/2 cup brandy or dark rum (I like brandy better)
1 and 1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
freshly grated nutmeg

The directions are simple. In the induction phase of the low-carb lifestyle, you should leave out the alcohol.

Lightly beat the eggs in a medium bowl. Combine the milk and cinnamon in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring it to a simmer, and then gradually whisk it into the eggs. Place the new mixture back into the saucepan and reduce the heat to low. Cook while whisking it constantly until it reaches 175 degrees. This should take between 1 and 2 minutes. Remove the mixture from the heat. Whisk in the sweetener, the alcohol, the cream and the vanilla. Let it cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate it until cold. About 1 hour will be good. After you have poured it into the glasses, you can dust it with the nutmeg.

Fairly easy, and a great holiday treat makes this eggnog irresistible.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Why Breakfast?

In the last post I talked a little bit about breakfast. This post, I am going to go more in depth.

Statistics show that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. The Mayo Clinic has found that people who eat breakfast in the morning have more energy throughout the day, have better chance of weight loss, and perform better due to increased concentration.

Schools with low-income students are required to serve breakfast at reduced prices, or free to those who qualify. The reason: students who eat breakfast perform better. You can often see teachers eating cafeteria breakfast, also, because they know the part it plays in overall success.

During standardized testing, most classroom teachers have snacks for the time between each test, because eating something healthy can give your brain that extra boost you need.

Keep this in mind the next time you think you don't have time for breakfast. Make time for breakfast. It's imperative that you fuel your body for the day that lay ahead. Weather it's few slices of bacon, some cottage cheese and peaches, or a hard boiled egg, give yourself something to hold you over until lunch, which in this busy world may come until dinnertime.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Most Important Meal of the Day

One of the things that seems to be difficult is to find something low carb to eat in the mornings. Breakfast has always been a meal of pastries and sweets. Muffins typically have over 600 calories. Of course, they do make low fat muffins, but that tastes like eating the cardboard box that they were shipped in. Even though you know you should avoid fast food, when you are running out the door in the morning, and you realize that you are starving, and you know you can't make it through to lunch, you end up hitting the drive through.

Here's the way to solve this problem. The following recipe can be prepared on Sunday night. It's enough to last through the entire week. I like to make the casserole, and take it to work in single serving sizes. That way, when I get to work, and everyone else is eating McGriddles and Breakfast Burritos, I can heat a serving up in the microwave, and I have breakfast, too.

Follow these directions, and your casserole will make others want to trade their breakfast for yours.

You will need:
8 eggs
1/4 cup whipping cream
salt/pepper
1/2 pound pork sausage or half a pound crisp bacon
1/2 cup cheddar cheese
4 Tbsp cream cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook the sausage or bacon in small pieces. For sausage, just use a fork to break it apart while cooking it. If you are using bacon, my advice is to cut it with kitchen shears right into the pan. While that is cooking, you can be mixing the eggs, salt and pepper, and cream together. Stir the meat and both cheeses into the egg mixture with a spoon. Pour the mixture into a greased casserole dish, and bake it for 45 minutes.

Enjoy.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Are You Addicted to Sugar?

It sounds like a funny question at first, but in all honesty, it is a problem that plagues many Americans. Some doctors would disagree with you when you say that you are addicted to sugar. I absolutely believe, however, that there is a such thing as sugar addiction. There are many symptoms that you can attribute to sugar addiction. If you are curious as to whether or not you have a sugar addiction, answer the following questions:

1. Do you have to have something that contains sugar at least one time per day? (remember, this includes fruit)

2. Do you feel great after eating sweets, only to "crash" after an hour or two?

3. Do you make special trips to the store, or special stops on the way home from work, to pick up something sweet? (a Hershey bar from the vending machine at work before leaving counts)

4. Have you ever vowed to cut down on sweets, only to fail after a few days, and consume the amount you would have eaten those days during a few hour period?

5. Do you ever eat one Oreo, and find that you can't stop until you have finished the entire bag?

6. Can people pinpoint when you haven't had your sugar fix, because you are so moody?

7. Can you pinpoint when you haven't had your sugar fix, because you have a headache from sugar withdrawals?

If you answered yes to more than one of these questions, you most likely have a sugar addiction. If you answered yes to all of these questions, you most likely are me. I have self-diagnosed sugar addiction. There is really no need to get a diagnosis on this, as it is so unbelievably obvious.

Knowing that you have a sugar addiction is the first step to beating the addiction. If you have a sugar addiction, eating something that contains sugar will cause you to want to eat something more that contains sugar. Knowing that you should avoid sugar altogether is a great way to get your addiction under control.

Sugar addiction will never go away. It is always with you. Identifying your sugar addiction is the first step in overcoming this problem. There are actually twelve step programs for sugar addicts, and it may be a direction you should go. Whatever you choose to do to combat this sugar addiction, remember that one sweet leads to another sweet, leads to another sweet, leads to a sugar induced coma.

PCOS and Low-Carb

Another reason that I shouldn't be allowed to play on the Internet. I have found multitudes of information on the benefits of living the low-carb lifestyle. Earlier I came across a bit of information about PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome)

If you don't know anyone who has been diagnosed with this disease, you may not know much about it. Here's a quick overview of what it is.

Polycystic ovary syndrome is a problem in which a hormones are out of balance. It can cause problems with a woman's menstrual cycle, and also make it difficult to get pregnant (cause infertility). PCOS may also cause unwanted changes in the way you look. It can cause weight gain, unwanted hair growth, acne, etc. If it is not treated, over time it can lead to serious health problems, such as diabetes and heart disease.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (or PCOS) is common, affecting as many as 1 in 15 women. Often the symptoms begin in the teen years. Treatment can help control the symptoms and prevent long-term problems.

Interestingly, it is thought that PCOS stems from hyperinsulinemia. Big word, huh? Basically, that is "carbohydrate intolerance." Even more interesting. Do you know what the first step in treating PCOS often is? Bet you can guess... It's low-carb dieting. Many doctors suggest that their patients go low-carb as a first attempt at combating PCOS and successfully conceiving. In fact, many women with PCOS report that low-carb dieting was the first and only step that they took to successfully conceive, and that it worked.

There are many women who suffer from PCOS and do not even know it. The following symptoms are associated with PCOS:

Acne
Weight gain and trouble losing weight.
Extra hair on the face and body (often women get thicker and darker facial hair and more hair on the chest, belly, and back)
Thinning hair on the scalp
Irregular periods (often women with PCOS have fewer than nine periods a year; some women have no periods; others have very heavy bleeding)
Fertility problems
Depression
Cyst on their ovaries (these are not harmful, but they do cause hormonal imbalance, causing the infertility)

These symptoms do not need to all be present for you to have PCOS. Sometimes they are mild, and other times they are severe. If you are currently experiencing some of these symptoms, or know someone who is, it wouldn't hurt to consult a doctor. You may not be suffering from PCOS, but it is a good idea to rule it out.

Another Low-Carb Link

Attention Men: This blog will help to benefit your health.

This is not to say that female readers need not continue. I may not be a man, but I have many men in my life that I care about, and after reading an article about low-carb diets, I have contacted them all to remind them to pass on the potatoes and macaroni at dinner tonight.

Research shows that a diet high in carbs contributes to a more rapid growth of prostate tumors. It seems that having too much insulin in the blood contributes to outcomes in patients who already have prostate cancer not being as favorable. Basically, if you or someone you know has already been diagnosed with prostate cancer, it would be beneficial to maintain a low-carb lifestyle. High-carb yields higher insulin levels, along with more weight gain, and what appears to be quicker tumor growth. Though the studies were conducted on mice that already had tumors, it can't hurt to think in preventative terms.

In studies that were conducted for determining the affect that carbohydrates have on the growth of prostate tumors, the overall result was that "diets associated with reduction in insulin level may have benefits for prostate cancer patients..." This is a direct quote from the authors of the study.

This is a promising discovery. It may be true of all tumors. Wouldn't it be great to know that the "low-carb craze," as it has been dubbed by many skeptics, is helpful in slowing the growth of cancers? What a world, huh...

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Truth About Fruits

Even though most people grow up being told to eat your fruits and vegetables, the truth is that fruits are very high in sugar. There are some that are healthier than others. Fruits can be broken down into groups that include those low in sugar, moderate in sugar, and high in sugar. You should always find out the nutrition facts of food before consuming it, whether you are trying to stay low-carb, or not. Here are some common fruits broken into groups for your low-carb convenience.

The list of fruits that you should absolutely avoid due their extremely high sugar count are:

bananas
cherries
figs
grapes
kiwi
mangoes
oranges
pears
pineapple
plums
pomegranates
tangerines

Fruits that have a moderate amount of sugar in them should be avoided mostly when you are living the low-carb lifestyle. These include, but are not limited to:

apples
apricots
blueberries
cantaloupes
grapefruit
honeydews
nectarines
papaya
peaches
strawberries
watermelon

If you are going to eat fruit while living the low-carb lifetsyle, there are some that are lower in sugar, and are a healthier choice. Some fruits lower in sugar are:

blackberries
cranberries
lemon
lime
raspberries

The sugar in fruit is somewhat different than granulated sugar, but in effect, it is the same on your body. I, for one, feel very sick after I eat most fruits. They feel heavy on my stomach, and I lose energy. If you are someone like me, and notice the same reaction to fruits that I have, you would be wise to avoid them. There are people who don't have the same reaction to fruit that I do. For those people, eating fruit everyday may be just fine. For me however, eating fruit daily is just not an option.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

What's For Dinner Tonight

With the frequent job layoffs, and the skyrocketing prices of everything, one thing that can be helpful to your budget is to meal plan in advance. The cost is much higher for most items at local, smaller grocery stores. When you meal plan in advance, you can shop around for better prices.

The first step to meal planning is to have some kind of inventory of what you already have at your house in the cabinets and the freezer. For example, if you have 40 pounds of chicken (like I do thanks to a local market meat sale), a good place to start would be to find some recipes with chicken. I like to search allrecipes.com, but there are lots of recipe sites out there.

Besides saving money, meal planning adds convenience to your week. Most people are super busy during the week, and factoring in a trip to the grocery store on the way home from work just takes too much energy. The thought of having to stop for an ingredient is draining enough, but actually making the stop is too much.

The final plus to meal planning in advance is that you can control the nutrition facts in your recipe. If you are a low-carber, which I would assume you are since you are reading this, you can substitute ingredients to stay low-carb.

There are a lot of reasons to meal plan. It's not a difficult thing to do, and it saves time, money, and stress. If you don't already meal plan, hopefully this post will inspire you to do so.

Monday, December 8, 2008

A Quick Observation

A quick observation that I have made is that I seem to struggle with dieting more when I am at work, than when I am anywhere else. I have no problem sticking to my diet when I am at home, or when I am out doing "chores." When I am at work, however, it seems like all I want to do is snack. I don't know what the reason for this is, but it is most definitely the case. The great thing about me making this observation is that I can now prepare for this.

There are some great snack foods that come in handy when you figure this out about yourself. My favorite for this type of occasion is bacon. I love to eat a few pieces of bacon when I am wanting to snack. (notice I said wanting to snack, and not hungry) The benefits of snacking on bacon are high protein content, and virtually no, if any, carb content. In that same thought, cheese is great. I just buy blocks of cheese, and cut it into cubes. It takes a little time, but costs less this way. Another snack I like to have, but must plan in advance for, is hard boiled eggs, which I sometimes make into deviled eggs. They are convenient, but you have to consider others when picking this snack. It is important to remember that some people have a problem with the smell. If you share a space with someone else at work, make sure it isn't offensive to them.

If you are pressed for time, and can only make a quick stop on the way somewhere, there is always beef sticks, like Slim Jims, or my favorite Jack's Links. Also, most convenience stores have pork rinds which are high in protein and low in carbs. Think of some other low-carb snacks that are convenient, and make a list of them. Make them in advance, so you never get into a bad carb situation.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sample Menu Plan

I recently came across a low-carb starting plan, and I was very unhappy with what I saw. As you should know from my earlier post, you should consume very few carbs on the first few days of the low-carb lifestyle. It takes a little while for the carbs that are stored in your body to get out. For this reason, you want to stay very low-carb while this process is taking place. The suggestion meal plan that I came across while playing around on the Internet doesn't seem to agree with me. While I did agree with much of the food that is listed, there were a few items that did not belong on the menu for the induction phase of low-carb. The plan was as follows:

Monday
Breakfast-Two egg omelet with sausage and roasted red peppers
Lunch-Reuben sandwich (corned beef, Swiss cheese and sauerkraut) on one slice low carb bread, and green salad with low carb dressing
Dinner-Grilled chicken breast and steamed asparagus and yellow squash and mixed salad with vinaigrette or low carb dressing
Snack-Celery sticks with low carb dip

Tuesday
Breakfast-Two poached eggs with smoked salmon in cream dill sauce, and half small tomato
Lunch-Grilled beef patty with steamed broccoli and cauliflower and mixed green salad with olive oil & balsamic vinaigrette
Dinner-Roast chicken with herbs with broccoli with Parmesan curls and Endive and radish salad with vinaigrette
Snack-Red pepper sticks with low carb dip

Wednesday
Breakfast-One low carb muffin and one hard-boiled egg
Lunch-Cobb salad (avocado, tomato, chicken, hard-boiled egg, blue cheese and bacon over lettuce) with olive and balsamic vinaigrette
Dinner-Salmon with Steel’s Wasabi Teriyaki sauce and steamed green beans with sesame oil cabbage slaw with low carb Cole Slaw dressing
Snack-Olives and Cheddar cubes

Thursday
Breakfast-Two scrambled eggs with two slices of bacon and one slice of low carb bread
Lunch-Shrimp salad over lettuce and tomato slices with low carb dressing
Dinner-Broiled lamb chops with Swiss chard with garlic and olive oil and mixed green salad with olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette
Snack-Atkins Advantage shake

Friday
Breakfast-Two low carb pancakes with low carb syrup and three turkey sausages
Lunch-Large tossed salad with tuna, tomatoes and low carb dressing
Dinner-Roasted pork tenderloin and sauteed spinach and red peppers
Snack-Stallone high protein low carb pudding

Saturday
Breakfast-One low carb muffin and two slices of Cheddar cheese
Lunch-Steak and pepper fajitas on low carb tortilla and Romaine and avocado salad with Olivado Avocado oil and lemon
Dinner-Grilled tuna with spice rub and zucchini and mushrooms skewers
Snack-Atkins Advantage bar

Sunday
Breakfast-Poached egg on one slice low carb bread, two tomato slices and two slices Cheddar cheese
Lunch-Chef Salad (roast turkey, cheese, red onion and sliced tomatoes over romaine) with olive and balsamic vinaigrette
Dinner-Turkey meatloaf and green bean, snow pea and pepper medley
Snack-Olives and Cheddar cubes

Now that you have seen the suggested meal plan, see if you can spot my three biggest problems with this meal plan for the induction phase.

Give up? If you know me at all, you know I am going to tell you the flaws that I found. Usually, the flaw would be something with grammar or spelling. This time, though, it's the content, and not the spelling. My first issue is that there is flour product eaten 6 of the 7 days. Sometimes it's low-carb bread. Sometimes it's a pastry, like a muffin. It also comes in the form of pancakes and tortillas. They do make sure that the reader realizes that it's a low-carb version, but still, during induction, low-carb flour products are a no-no. Even after induction phase, they should be eaten in moderation. The next issue that I have with this meal plan is that you eat salad almost everyday, and sometimes twice a day. Vegetables are wonderful, and you can of course eat them on the low-carb lifestyle, but in the induction phase, this is just too much salad, and not enough protein to go with it. The other problem that I had when I saw this was the way I felt like it was advertising products. I enjoy all of the products mentioned, including Atkins products and Stallone products. However, I thought it was in poor taste to "advertise" in this way. I was left uneasy with the entire menu plan.

I did like the idea of menu planning, though. It's especially important to menu plan for the first week. During the first week, you will still be craving carbs, because you are technically "addicted" to the carbs. By all means, menu plan. But, when you do...watch out for those hidden carbs, and eat the low-carb food you like. Don't fall for slick advertising campaigns.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Meatloaf Calling Your Name?

Here's a great meatloaf recipe that keeps your carbs under control, but also gives you that comforting feeling in your tummy. With the temperatures dropping, you need something like this for dinner.

Ingredients

Tomato Topping:
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1/4 cup sugar substitute (recommended: Splenda)
2 teaspoons white vinegar or water

2 pounds ground chuck
2 eggs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 cup red onion, diced small
1/4 cup roasted or fresh red bell peppers, diced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Optional

1/4 pound prosciutto, or any type of ham, thinly sliced
1/4 pound provolone cheese, sliced

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a small bowl, mix together the tomato topping ingredients. Set it aside. You may add a few drops of water to thin to a ketchup consistency.
In a large bowl, mix together the beef, eggs, Parmesan, vegetables, herbs, and seasonings.
Working on a waxed paper lined sheet pan or counter, form meatloaf mix into a 10 by 8-inch flat rectangle on the waxed paper. Place a layer of prosciutto slices on top, followed by a layer of provolone slices. Roll up the stuffed meatloaf mix like a burrito and seal the edges all around by pinching the meat.
Place the roll, seam side down, into a 5 by 9-inch loaf pan. Spread a heavy coat of the tomato topping to completely cover the top of the meatloaf. Place it in the oven and bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Drain the fat and let rest at least 10 minutes before slicing.

Comfort Foods (Repost)

Comfort food is something that everyone wants, at one time or another. The trouble with most comfort food, however, is that it is generally high in carbs, meaning that if you live the low-carb lifestyle, like so many people do, it's off limits to you. The good news is that there are ways to make the comfort foods that you love, and still stay low-carb. All you have to do is modify the recipes a little.

For example, one of my favorite comfort foods is a good basket of onion rings. I love to dip them in a thick ranch dressing. They go great with a burger. The problem with onion rings is that the breading has carbs, and that makes it a no-no. There is a way, however, to make them lower in carbs than usual. The following recipe comes from George Stella. If you don't know who he is, as a low-carber, you absolutely need to find some information about him. Short version, he is an avid low-carber with a show on Food Network. He has lost a tremendous amount of weight, and has great recipes.

Ingredients
3 to 6 cups vegetable oil
3 eggs
1/4 cup heavy cream or water
3 large yellow onions

Breading:
2 1/3 cups soy flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning

Directions
Place a heavy pot over medium-high heat with at least an inch of vegetable oil. Heat oil to 350 degrees; it is important to monitor and maintain the temperature, or the soy flour breading and your oil will burn. (Portable deep fryers at home are great for this.)In a medium bowl, mix the eggs and cream to make an egg wash. In a separate larger bowl, mix the breading ingredients together.Peel and slice the onions in thick slices and carefully separate the rings. Then dip individual onion rings in the breading, then the egg wash, and then back in the breading again, making sure to coat well. Pat off any excess breading and carefully place into hot oil, in batches as necessary, and fry until golden brown and crisp, just 1 to 2 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Serve immediately.

Soy flour is made from toasted soybeans and has already been "cooked."Therefore it has a tendency to brown faster than plain flour when frying.

You can also use this same breading recipe to make other fried foods such as okra and cheese sticks. Oh, and it's also great on deep fried chicken.

Hopefully, you will enjoy these onion rings. I make my ranch dressing at home, so I can keep track of the nutrition facts. It's also better than any other ranch dressing that I have tried before. The next few posts will be about more comfort foods. If you enjoy comfort foods, come back and visit soon...