Pork hock

At the market today, I picked up a smoked pork hock ($2/lb, $4.45 total), broccoli ($1), my usual 30 grade B eggs ($5.50), a local “second” tomato ($1.29/lb, $1 total), a crooked cucumber (90 cents), and a quart of jalapenos ($2).

Before I ate low carb, I would have made split pea soup with a pork hock. Right now, I’m simmering the pork hock in water to make a broth. After it’s cooked, I plan to refrigerate it so the fat solidifies on top and then set the fat aside for cooking. I’ll use some of the broth to cook black soybeans for black soybean soup. I’ll use some of the meat for a ham and onion frittata. It should be good eating!

Edit: OK, how does something I simmered in plain water for 3 hours taste this good? When I removed it from the water (now broth), piece by piece because it was so tender, I tried a bite then decided at 11 o’clock at night to have a serving of it with dijon mustard. It’s moist, not too salty, tender, delicious – better than most of the hams I’ve had.



Frozen okra is really inexpensive – it’s on sale for 87 cents for 12 ounces right now. It has 3.8 net carbs per 100 g, so it’s a pretty good choice, carb-wise. I made Okra with tomatoes from World Vegetarian with a package I already had in the freezer and frozen tomatoes instead of fresh. I stirred in the crumbly paneer at the end to make it a complete meal. It was pretty bland, so I’m not going to bother sharing the recipe. I’m sure I’ll find a recipe that I like better next time.


Ground pork

Regular ground pork tends to be really inexpensive here – I picked some up today for $1.29/lb. I’m planning to use some of it to make green beans with fermented black beans and pork sauce (I’m planning to use 1/4 tsp. guar gum instead of the cornstarch) and ma po tofu (1/8 tsp. guar gum instead of the potato starch).

The fermented black beans were $1.19 for a small can and the chili bean paste was $2.39 for a jar. Buying fermented black beans and mixing up black bean sauce is much less expensive than buying black bean sauce, of course.


Cookie craving

I was craving cookies tonight, so I followed this recipe for chocolate chip cookie bars. It appears that I accidentally doubled the butter – I used half cup instead of half stick. I liked it that way.
I happened to have 70% cacao chocolate chips (not sugar-free) on hand, so I used those. Looks like 1/2 cup is about 85 g, which has about 33 net carbs, so it contributes 2 net carbs per serving if I make 16 servings. The total carbs per serving is 3.1. I omitted the chopped nuts because they always seem funny to add to nut flour-based baked goods.

Strawberry daiquiri

I made myself a strawberry daiquiri by following this recipe using frozen berries and 5 tsp. erythritol as the sweetener. The erythritol didn’t dissolve that well – I should make some simple syrup with it. But the drink tasted great anyway. 


Homemade soy milk and tofu

I tried making soy milk using my black soy beans, but I’m not patient enough to remove the skins so it turned out a pretty ugly black colour. I’m going to save the black soy beans for things like chili in future.

I’ve made a few batches of soy milk using the regular soy beans – 1/2 cup of beans (about 90 g, 25 cents worth from the Chinese market or 40 cents worth of organic soybeans from the health food store) makes about 1 1/2 L of  soy milk. It’s good for cooking with just a pinch of salt, but normally I add 1/4 tsp. stevia and 2 tsp. vanilla extract for drinking.

I’m going to make tofu by following this recipe. I can get tofu pretty inexpensively at the Chinese market but homemade is supposed to be really tasty. I’ll report back on whether I find it worth the time.


Paneer from frozen milk

I followed this recipe to make paneer using some goat milk I had in the freezer. (Except I used bottled lemon juice. Fresh lemon juice does not make a difference – I’ve used vinegar in the past, too, with equally good results.) Normally I would have thawed the milk at room temperature, but I was a bit impatient so I put it in a pot and let it slowly melt on low before bringing it to a boil. For some reason, the curds wouldn’t form properly – despite boiling the mixture vigorously and adding more lemon juice, the curds stayed small enough that they passed through the cheesecloth. I strained what I could to make a soft cheese and then used the whey, diluted with a bit of water, as a foot soak. My feet feel great 🙂

Homemade paneer has always worked before, so I’ll still do it again.