Sunday, April 27, 2014

finally....

Hi guys,

I hope that someone will still come to my blog after such a long time of no post... 
Times and times I think to post my baking results, but it so much more easy to post just a photo to the Facebook page or on Twitter. I know, not good.

I have some news...  usually, when someone starts a new post with those words, you expect them to announce a pregnancy, a move to another city, state or continent, new fanstastic job opportunity or winnig a lotto (maybe?)...
No, no, no... my news are much simplier. 
Few weeks (maybe 3 months ago) I was feeling too full(?), full of eating the same stuff, full of not fitting into some dresses I wanted to wear, feelling tired, hungry all the time and generally not feelling to do everyday things - waking up, working, cleaning, cooking... nothing at all...

So I decided to give a try a ketogennic diet. Yes, low carb, gluten free and sugar free eating.
I will not write the same stuff as everyone, I just wanted to share my feelings with you.

After just 3 months I feel great! I lost some weight (some of my friends say a lot... like 10 kilos?) 
I do not really know, I don't care about numbers, they are just numbers. I fit into the dresses I never have worn (because I could not zipp them up). I am not feeling tired, I have much more energy thought sleeping less hours, I even smile more. 
I have the feeling that I eat much more - though I eat creme fraiche, heavy creem, eggs, butter, coconut oil and some more "fatty stuff", but I eat much more protein and vegetable than before.

I feel great, and my husband sees it. He even started this diet too cause he was diagnosed with high cholesterol and they wanted to put him on statins. He denieded it and tries to help himself exercising daily (just a swift 1 hour walk), eating low carb, gluten and sugar free and hoping in October to check again with his doctor to seat some results. 
I read a lot about cholesterol, and we decided, that going sugar and gluten free should have the result to lower the general cholesterol (fatty liver without sugar and gluten in our meal should clear sometime and produce just the necessary cholesterol for our cells, body and energy).

As a result of this diet - (you could say I have a sweet tooth) - I was not keen on to eat any sugar-y stuff, just the fatty stuff. But I made lately 2 fantastic cakes - based on my mothers Sunday sponge cake I grewn on.

And I wanted to share them with you. Just before I do so - here are my 2 favorite ladies living gluten and sugar free and low carb

 http://www.ibreatheimhungry.com/
 http://alldayidreamaboutfood.com/


The first one is Lemon chia seed - sponge cake


5 large eggs (separated)
3/4 to 1 cup of erythritol 
10 drops of liquid stevia
pinch of salt
3/4 cup of almond meal (flour)
2 tbsp coconut flour
150ml almond milk
1 baking powder
100 ml olive oil
1/4 cup creme fraiche
zest and juice of 1 big lemon (if you want more lemony taste- add more zest)
1 tspn vanilla extract
2 tbsp chia seeds


Beat the egg yolks with erythritol and stevia, add slowly the almond milk, olive oil, vanilla extract, lemon zest and juice and creme fraiche.
Add slowly almond meal, coconut flour, chia seeds - all mixed with 1 baking powder. Mix well.

Beat the eggwhites with the pinch of salt till stiff peaks appear and fold immediately but tenderly to the first mixture (flour, egg yolks etc)

Then pour the mixture to your silicone bake form for sponge cake and bake in preheated oven at 170 C for 30-35 minutes (or till the knife comes clean out).


The second (based on the same receipe) is

Peanutbutter chocolate caramel sponge cake


5 large eggs (separated)
150 ml almond milk
100 ml olive oil
pinch of salt
1 cup almond meal
1/4 cup coconut flour
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup erythritol
10 drops of liquid stevia
1/4 cup raw cacao powder
1 baking powder

for the caramel sause adapted from Maria Emmerich
1/2 cup butter 
1 cup erythritol
1/2 cup heavy cream (not whipped)

Mix well together egg yolks, stevia, erythritol, peanut butter, olive oil and almond milk.
Add slowly the mixture of the almond meal, coconut flour with 1 baking powder and cacao powder.
Inbetween beat the 5 egg whites with the pinch of salt to stiff peaks and fold slowly and tenderly into the first mixture.
Pour into the baking form ( I use silicone, so I do not have to butter spray the form first  - a bit lazy I know) and bake for 35-40 minutes at 170 C.

Make your caramel sauce:
brown the butter (melting and mixing it till it starts turning brown), immediately - while stirring well - add the ertythritol and heavy cream. Mix well, turn of the heat - it will start thickening while cooling.
Pour over the baked cake. Let cool and serve.

---

The some important things to care while on low carb, gluten and sugar free diet:
peanut butter - I make my own, just blendin the peanuts till they turn to smooth peanut butter - I do NOT add any further oils or butter
almond milk - just buy raw almonds (blanched or not - I do not mind)... add 1 cup of almonds to your blender and 3-4 cups of wather, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and if you want - 1 tbspn erythritol (or stevia, or what ever your prefer) and blend well - about 1 minute - and you will get your home made almond milk. pour into glass bottle and store in refridgerator for up to 4 days.
almond meal - I don't buy the pricey stuff in food stores - I just buy blanched almonds and blend them for about 3-4 minutes (not longer, as they will start to turn into almond butter), I store them in airtight glass container for as long as I need - it is a flour guys
erythritol - I did not find clear stevia on the market here - but I foudn Deligios Stevia with erythritol - perfect for baking as it is sold as powder and 1:1 serving for sugar (no maltodextrose, no fructose and glucose or any other sugary stuff)...
olive oil - always use the best of best - extra virgin olive oil

I am NOT an expert, I am just sharing with you my 3-months experience of low carbing - which really is changing my life right now.

So I hope you will try those cakes to bake and hope you enjoy them!

soon I will be posting some pictures of my Easter SUGAR cookies- which I did for my boy to school and my office clients.

Hope to hear from you!

Jana

Friday, December 20, 2013

Merry Christmas and healthy and happy New Year!

I know - I have not posted for ages... I was really thinking from time to time to post at least a hello to everybody ... but always went the opposite way - avoiding blogging.

But I am still here, living in Greece on the sunny island of Rhodes (with over 256 sunny days a year). I am sure many of you know / read / heard about Greece in economic crisis. And though the island was full of tourists and we had quite a lot of work during the summer season - I cannot say I fell happy or satisfied or fulfilled.

I feel that I am working for nothing - meaning in the business, just waking up, working through the day and taking care of my family.
And though I know that the most important is that our family stays connected and supporting each other and thinking of each other (and most important - HEALTHY) - I still feel that I do not do enough.
But I am positive, I truly believe that tomorrow will be a better day - not just for my kid - but for everybody. Because every living human deserves to live a proper and let me say - protected and safe - life with equal opportunities for all of us. 

So far my thoughts. 

I did bake during the summer, but I did not sew or crochet. Shame on me!

But here is my latest batch of decorated cookies with the best wishes to everyone for Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Enjoy!






 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Greek Orthodox Easter coming...

Hello everyone,

difficult times here in Greece... with all the crisis and political decisions going on ... you never know who tells the truth and where we are going to be tomorrow.

But... the Greek Orthodox Eastern are coming and will be celebrated on May 5th & 6th.
so it was time to make some decorated cookies:




 I made a bit stiffer royal icing for the flowers and made them look more  funky (I would say).

Hope you like them.

thanks for stopping by!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Crochet basket

I love pinterest... it allows me to find easy anything I want... I love the colors, the scheme, the designs, the photos...everything.

And I saw a crochet basket (or few of them) there.

And here is my first attempt at it:







I made the basket first and a doily in red later. I handsew the doily on the front of the basket.

thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

A present...

Few days ago a very good friend of mine had a birthday.
...
Wait. A very good friend... I talk to her, almost every day, I e-mail her etc. but - the extraordinaire is  - I have not met her in person yet - I have not seen a picture of her yet!

But I feel like I  knew her since ever.

She is funny, friendly, always with a smile and sweet, she never gives you a feeling not to want to help or listen or do something.
I truly am happy I have met her few years ago (via my work - meet - I mean via email and phone .... I undersign - I have not met her yet in person). 

So as I knew she has a birthday the same day as my niece - it is easy to remember - I decided that I needed to send her a gift.

I made a crochet bag in happy colors for her and a necklace to go with.




Happy Birthday Stella!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Once a year

Once a year ... it is time to remember the special one
Once a year ... it is time to celebrate
Once a year ... it is time to make his favorite Vanilla cupcakes with Peanutbutter frosting (the fluffy one, please)
Once a year ... it is time that the family gets together to celebrate HIS birthday.

I am talking about our son... the one and only.
this year it is his 11th...
I like the number, I like to make cupcakes and cakes.

so here is his story in pictures:

his b-day cake : Strawberry Vanilla mousse cake... actually just mousse...more or less, the cake became very very tall!

some orange jellies and Vanilla cupcakes with Peanut butter fluffy buttercream

And finally - the slice of the cake... you see how tall the cake became?
sorry for the light on the pictures, it was evening, so ... sorry again.

the Vanilla cupcakes are my favorite - Amy Sedaris' Vanilla cupcakes

the Peanut butter (the fluffy / creamy one) frosting can be found here

and the Strawberry Vanilla mousse cake here.



Happy Birthday!