1 – 1.25 pounds flatiron steak

sea salt

1 12 oz. bag of steamable vegetables

reduced sodium soy sauce

sesame seeds (optional)

Prepare the meat by cutting out any thick pieces of gristle, tendon or fat.  Pour salt into your hand and rub over both sides of the meat.  I had to cut the piece of meat in half and cook each piece separately to make it fit into my 10″ cast iron skillet.  Heat the pan well on medium heat – a drop of water should dance around and disappear.   The idea is to sear the meat to keep the juices inside.  Cook on each side for about 2.5 minutes.  The meat will still be very pink inside and you should have a nice brown color on the outside.  In the meantime, cook the steamer in the microwave for only 5 minutes.  Remove and drain the vegetables.  Remove the beef from the pan and slice against the grain at a 45 degree angle.  Repeat this process with the second piece of beef.  In a larger skillet, return the sliced beef to medium heat for about 2 minutes – any dark red parts of the sliced beef should finish cooking.  Add soy sauce to taste.  Add the drained vegetables.  Toast the sesame seeds and sprinkle over the top of the dish.


You are going to like this!

Want something to crunch?

There is a cable TV show called Blaine’s Low Carb Kitchen that I watch to get wonderful recipes and ideas from.

This recipe is from his December 25, 2009 show and is extra easy to make. I added a tweak or two of my own:

Crunchy Parmesan Crackers

1 cup grated parmesan cheese – I used coarsely grated DiGiorno

1/4 cup soy flour

1 egg white – feed the yolk to the dog.

2  T olive oil (plus a tiny bit more)

1 t italian seasoning (original recipe called for 1 t caraway seeds; you can be creative)

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Mix above well with a spoon until it comes together into a crumbly dough and form into a ball with your hands.  Divide the ball into half.

Spray 4 square sheets of waxed paper with Pam spray (I use olive oil in my Misto) and place the balls between two sheets.  Roll each with a rolling pin until extremely thin.  The thinness is what will produce the crunch.  Take the top sheet of paper off and score the dough with a rolling pizza cutter – about 1.5 inch squares. Place the dough with bottom wax paper still intact onto a baking pan.  Bake in the oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until the crackers are nicely browned.

Fresh out of the oven.

Allow the crackers to cool and break along the scores.  Enjoy with just about anything!

Carbohydrate: 15 grams for the whole batch.

ready to enjoy!

The recipe:

1 cup natural peanut butter (no-stir type preferred)
1/2 cup coconut oil
3 Tablespoons honey
4 tablespoons heavy cream or half & half
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 packets Sun Crystals
1 packet Stevia
2 cups planters lightly salted dry roasted peanuts
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 scoop (14 – 19 g protein) unflavored whey protein powder

Add peanut butter, honey, and coconut oil to a microwave safe dish.

Microwave on high for 69 seconds. Remove and immediately whisk
in vanilla extract and heavy cream or half & half. Stir in sweetener,
xanthan gum (if using), and protein powder. Taste and adjust if necessary.
Fold in peanuts and spread onto a pan lined with wax paper.
If making chocolate wash:
In small bowl, melt 3 tablespoons 85% chocolate chips with 1 tsp coconut oil for
20 seconds; stir, microwave 20 more seconds. Stir until smooth and stir in 1 packet
Sun Crystals until blended.  Spread as a “wash” over the peanut bars.  When all is firm
in refrigerator, cut into 1.5 inch squares (like fudge) and you are ready to eat!

Ready to slice. . . .

This recipe uses zucchini and yellow squash – I suppose you could just use twice as much of one if you so desired.

I learned something really cool about olive oil and butter.  If you use equal parts of each you end up with an amazing flavor.  I am also told these two mixed together will not overheat as each will when used separately.  This has been my experience so far ~

Squash Hash

3 yellow squash

2 medium or 3 small zucchini squash

1 small onion chopped

1 generous teaspoon minced garlic

1 T olive oil

1 T butter

greek seasoning

Finely chop the onion or pulse a few times in the food processor and saute with the garlic.  Slice each squash lengthwise into quarters, then chop into 1/2 inch pieces ~ ending up with a whole bunch of cubes. Add these to the onions and garlic and season with greek seasoning.  Saute until the squash becomes translucent – serve sprinkled with bread crumbs.


I am adding an update here on the whole diet change thing.  Richard joined me in this low carb ‘taming the beast’ lifestyle about 5 weeks ago.  As of today he has lost 29 pounds!!  As of now I have lost 27 pounds.  Richard is on a quest to lose more and I will keep you updated. Go Richard!!  I believe I have lost all I am going to so now will just maintain where I am.

One more successful recipe ~ originally from my best friend Paula.  Mind you previously I am not a lover or even liker of cabbage until I tried this dish.  I added the cinnamon after eating this one day while smelling a coffee cake that was sitting in front of me at work in the break room.  Hmmm sounded like it might be tasty – so I tried it and it worked!

Cabbage with Love

1 head of cabbage

2 cups peeled baby carrots

olive oil

Nature’s Seasons seasoning blend

ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Coat a 13 x 9 dish with olive oil.  Quarter the cabbage and separate the layers – spreading over the dish and tossing in some more olive oil.  Sprinkle with Nature’s Seasons.  Arrange the carrots on top of the cabbage layers and generously sprinkle with cinnamon.  Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes to one hour.


Wow is all I can say – and this year is almost gone!  Life just keeps happening at turbo speed.  Richard has had 2 relatives pass away in the past 2 weeks with trips to West TN each time.  We are enjoying a visit from Richard’s cousin Butch this evening – his mom passed away this past week.  Richard officiated her memorial as he has done for the last 3 relatives in this group.  He did a great job.

I have stepped up my cooking efforts – I am totally energized by 1) moving a small TV into the kitchen and catching some FoodTV shows 2) finding a new author named Stella that has a great low carb cookbook 3) a website called ‘Healthy Indulgences’ at healthyindulgences.blogspot.com and 4) a book called the Metabolism Miracle.  I would totally recommend the last 3 for anyone looking to conquer weight gain and master weight loss.  And if you are fighting with high blood sugars, please check this information out.

I am really excited at some of the tasty recipes I have to share.  Most of these were originally a recipe on one of the previously mentioned places that I added a bit of myself to.

This one passed the Gracie test; she was very enthusiastic about it even!  Most of these type recipes call for cream, sour cream, or half and half.  I omitted these and achieved what I wanted just by making sure the cauliflower was extremely tender and well liquified in the blender.

Faux Potato Soup

2 frozen packages of cauliflower

4 cups of chicken broth

a generous handful of chopped shallots or mild onion

a heaping teaspoon of minced garlic

1 lb bacon cooked crispy (yes go ahead and cook the whole package!)

cheddar cheese – finely shredded


white pepper

Bring chicken broth to a boil; add cauliflower, scallions, and garlic.  Boil until cauliflower is tender ~ 15 minutes.  Remove cauliflower from the broth and liquify in the blender.  This may take two trips depending on the size of your blender.  Add the liquid back to the broth in the pot and then add a cup or so of water to the blender and blend to get all of the cauliflower mixture out and back into your pot.  Now add a teaspoon of white pepper and salt to taste, stirring in over low heat.  Add three large handfuls of cheese stirring in after each one.  The finely shredded cheese works really well for this recipe.

Serve in bowls topped with crumbled bacon.  Offer more cheddar cheese as topping.


When I started this blog I wanted to include a fairly easy but tasty recipe with each post.  Since that time I have changed my diet greatly which means focusing on not eating too many carbs.  I will now try to include a recipe, meal, or a snack that has not caused a spike in the blood sugar after 1 and 2 hours – just in case anyone else is trying to tame this beast.

I have now officially been working at this blood sugar thing for 6 months.  I have tried diet and exercise, which did not work exclusively, tried metformin, which seems to be working at it’s max dose, and also lost as of today 25 pounds.  I also tried Januvia.  For the first week or so Januvia seemed like a wonder drug.  I could eat bread, fruit, potatoes (always in moderation) and my blood sugar stayed very even and low.  Then I started feeling like I was coming down with the flu.  I slept away a whole weekend without really being ‘sick’.  I had a sinus type headache and my joints began to swell like when I had a weird virus several years ago.  I googled Januvia and joints swelling and found that what makes Januvia work to keep the blood sugar down also works against keeping inflammatory processes at bay.  So any immune type problems are activated because the natural defense in your body (cytokines, in case you are interested) are deactivated.  So I quit taking Januvia and all of the symptoms were gone within 2 days.  Do you know, in the listed side effects/contraindications there is nothing about immune disorders?  I plan to send a report to the FDA when I figure out who and where to send it.

Favorite Dessert

1 small package of sugar free pistachio pudding

1 short container of cottage cheese

1 short container of sugar free cool whip

3/4 c walnut pieces

1 can pineapple tidbits, drained

Liquify cottage cheese in a blender.  Stir in cool whip and pudding mix until smooth.  Add walnuts and pineapple; cover and chill for an hour or so.   A serving is about a cup.

There are lots of things to find joy in – all around us all the time.  Today is a beautiful Saturday and I am headed outdoors!  The temperature is mild (for mid-July) and there is a nice breeze.  Look out world!

The older I become, the more I realize that life is bumpy.  The first bumps I thought were just temporary,  incidental and would go away.  That was about 20 years ago!  As life went on and the bumps kept coming I began to realize that things were not getting any easier, especially if you focus on all the bumps.  Today things are not going the way I would have wished in several areas and luckily I have already learned that these circumstances are not my life rather they are just bumps to navigate around.  And there are so many things surrounding me that bring me joy.

I am a redeemed child of God, who blesses me more than I can ever understand.  I have a wonderful husband, two beautiful and healthy girls, a job that gives me great fulfillment.  I have loving parents and family, friends and neighbors that are all blessings to my life.  I live in a place that I have dreamed of for years.

And now I am going to help my sweetheart make BBQ rub, marinade and sauce and enjoy the day!  Smoked pork shoulder or butt anyone?

Checking in with the latest progress regarding ‘taming the beast’.  I am 17 pounds down from the beginning and from FS (fingerstick checks) pre and post meals look to be in good control as long as I don’t eat more than about 15 – 20 carbs at a time.   I have noticed that I can tolerate more carbs after lunch and not many in the morning.  I also missed a night time dose of metformin this week and the next morning my fasting was 150.  Yikes – not ready to get off medicine yet.

17 pounds lighter

17 pounds lighter

The real issue I am working on right now is an early morning rise in the blood sugar.  Around 5am a rise of 20 to 40 points will occur and cause sweating and a general feeling of irritability that seems to last until almost noon.  I have tried drinking a protein drink on awakening, but sometimes the thing happens before I wake up!  It makes getting ready for work miserable because who wants to sweat while getting ready for work?  I am seriously considering going outside for about 10 minutes and going on an all out sprint to see if this puts a stop to the rise.  I will post more on this later.

One other really interesting thing:  Mexican food and chardonnay wine.  Almost every time we have dined at Casa Blanca in Lewisburg and I eat the shrimp and chicken fajita salad AND have 2 glasses of chardonnay wine, my blood sugar the next morning is below 120.  Sometimes below 110 and twice below 100.  Wow!!  Unfortunately after 2 glasses of chardonnay I am no longer awake and the evening is over.  There has got to be a better way!

Wonderful Pot Roast

2.5 – 3 pound pot roast

lawry’s seasoning salt

minced onions

small jar of ready made gravy

1 cup red wine (I use merlot)

1/2 water

Place the pot roast in the crock pot.  I put mine in directly from the freezer.  Pour red wine and water over and season with seasoning salt and minced onions.  I have found I don’t need much seasoning salt.  Cook on low for 7 – 8 hours and remove the roast onto a platter.  This will be a pretty hard little piece of meat – don’t worry!  Slice thinly against the grain and return to the pot.  Add gravy and enough water to make the liquid thicker than water but thinner than gravy and make sure all the meat is under the liquid.  Leave in the crock pot on low for another hour at least – longer is fine too.  Serve with steamed broccoli, carrots and a green salad.

In the beginning

In the beginning

So, I am trying not to be fixated on diabetes all the time.  Get up, go for the exercise, eat a breakfast without more than 20 carbs.  Ahem, add check the blood sugar right after Get up.  And then add ‘feel good if the blood sugar is less than 120’, or ‘try to figure out what went wrong if the blood sugar is greater than 120’.  Sometimes it is anyones guess.  Oops, I forgot the ‘step on the scale’ right after checking the blood sugar.  I am down to 130.8 from 144.  And the fixation seems to be alive.  I have to wonder though, if I lose enough weight will this beast go away?  Or at least allow me to quit taking metformin?  It’s anyone’s guess, once again.  I figure if I get to 120 or so and I still have it then I probably am stuck.   Ok enough of the musing for now.

I am conducting a very small trial of the theory of wine reducing blood sugar.  I joined a diabetes education group and this theory was discussed.  I am keeping blood sugars on a spreadsheet and notice that on Sunday mornings I have a blood sugar of about 100 – after eating at the mexican restaurant and having 2 glasses of chardonnay.  I am going to have a glass of merlot every night for 2 weeks and then abstain for 2 weeks and see if there is a difference.  Right now the data on the spreadsheet is not showing any pattern that I can see except for the Saturday night thing.  By the way, this is not ‘fixation’, rather ‘data collection’.

Here is my latest concoction – a loooonnng way from fresh bread but hey!  It is a nice pick-me-up in the afternoon!

1 cup chocolate Soy Slender Soymilk

1 scoop Aria Womens protein powder

ice chips to desired consistency

process in blender on high; add stevia for additional sweetness.  pour into glass and eat with a spoon.

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