Cooking 101: Coffee

Bulletproof Coffee

Dave Asprey came across the healing power of fats combined with caffeine on his 18K climb of a mountain in Tibet. This lifesaving drink re-energized him so he could go further to conquer the mountain. On his return home, his inquisitive mind began to intensely research what cause his sudden recovery and miraculous burst of energy. His findings have led to a phenomenon. I can’t afford his coffee and additives so I have my own recipe that I have tweaked.

I am addicted to this golden deliciousness! Here is my basic recipe and included are a few toppings/variations to take it to the next level!! Watch my YouTube video on this topic here.

Here are additional tips on how to make this coffee.

Secondly, I want to acknowledge that this recipe is from the brilliant mind of Dave Asprey, please stop by his page, The Bulletproof Executive, for more of his research and findings.

I am addicted to this golden deliciousness! Here is my basic recipe and included are a few toppings/variations to take it to the next level!!

INGREDIENTS
Here is how you make the basic coffee. I use 8 cups boiling water, that is cooled for a minute and add 1/2-1 tablespoons of organic mountain grown coffee for each cup of water. It all depends on how jolted you want to be for the day and how strong you like your coffee.
2 tablespoons Kerrygold Butter
I know in the video I said Kerryman (local Chicago bar that my friend DJs at) instead of the butter. I like both, so no judgement.
1 tablespoon MCT oil
1 tablespoon organic coconut oil
2-4 tablespoons equivalence of sugar substitute (I love stevia)

DIRECTIONS
Place all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until frothy.

VARIATIONS/FLAVORS
Add 2-4 tablespoons of any unsweetened syrups such as raspberry, caramel, hazelnut (I recommend the Davanci all natural series or you can find anything on Amazon) I sometimes add fresh blueberries, blackberries and raspberries.

Aztec Cinnamon Chocolate Coffee
1/4 cup cocoa powder
Pinch of chili pepper
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Apple Cinnamon Coffee
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 apple, peeled

Chocolate Shake Coffee
2 scoops chocolate protein powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Vanilla Shake Coffee
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 scoops vanilla protein powder

Coconut Creme Coffee
1/4 cup coconut cream (this is condensed coconut milk, no sugar added)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mochachino Coffee
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup heavy cream

Chocolate Mint Coffee
2 tablespoons mint extract
1/4 cup cocoa powder

Almond Joy Coffee
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup coconut cream (this is condensed coconut milk, no sugar added)

The Perfect Grilled Citrus Chicken

To Brine or Not To Brine: ALWAYS BRINE!

Brining is the process of soaking anything in or saturate with salty water. This does not make the meat, vegetables or whatever you brine (I am not really sure what else you would want to brine) salty, it actually allows the water and flavor to flood every cell in the meat. It also takes any cut of meat that may be tough and tenderizes it. This easy technique can be used on ay cut of meat.
The Perfect Grilled Citrus Chicken

For all of the brines, immerse the meat in water and place in the refrigerator for a minimum of an hour, overnight or leave in the freezer labeled (cause it is very hard to tell what it is, duh!) Before you cook the meat, allow it to sit on the counter for 15 minutes out of the brine, pat dry. By patting the meat dry, you are removing the excess liquid which will allow the meat to brown.

You can watch my YouTube video on the topic here.

Thanksgiving/Christmas Brine
1 1/4 cup no-iodine added salt (2 cups Kosher or coarse salt)
1/2 cup brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1 gallon vegetable stock
4 sprigs rosemary
4 sage leaves
1/2 onion, sliced
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 tablespoon allspice berries
1/2 tablespoon candied ginger
1 gallon ice water

Chicken Wings Brine
6 cups cold water
1/3 cup no-iodine added salt (1/2 cup kosher or coarse salt)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons black pepper
2 tablespoons hot sauce of your choice
2-3 pounds chicken wings

Poultry or Pork Apple  Brine
1/2 gallon cold water
2 quarts apple juice
2 cup no-iodine added salt (3 cups Kosher or coarse salt)
1/2 cup brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
10 whole cloves
1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
1 tablespoon ground nutmeg

Spicy Turkey Brine
2 quarts vegetable stock
1/2 cup no-iodine added salt (3/4 cup Kosher or coarse salt)
1/2 cup sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 tablespoon dried rosemary
1 tablespoon dried sage
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 cinnamon stick
2 quarts cold water

Apple Cider Poultry or Pork Brine
2 gallons water
4 cups apple cider
3 oranges, cut into quarters with peels
1 lemon, cut into quarters with peel
2 cups no-iodine added salt (or 3 1/2-cup Kosher salt or coarse salt)
2 cups packed brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
2 tablespoons dried rosemary
5 cloves garlic, smashed
3 tablespoons peppercorns
6 whole bay leaves
2 apples, cut into quarters
1 tablespoon whole allspice, coarsely crushed
1 inch of ginger, peeled and sliced

Poultry or Pork Maple Brine
4 quarts water
2 cups dark brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1 cup soy sauce
1 cup maple syrup
1 cup white vinegar
1/3 cup no-iodine added salt (1/2 cup kosher or coarse salt)
8-10  cloves garlic, smashed
6-8 whole bay leaves
3 large sprigs of thyme
2 teaspoons whole peppercorns

Simple Fish Brine
1 gallon water
2 cups no-iodine added salt (or 3 1/2-cup Kosher salt or coarse salt)
2/3 cup brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
2 lemons, quartered with peel on

Beer Fish Brine
4 cups light ale
1/2 cup sea salt
1/2 cup brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1/4 cup pickling spice
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon old bay seasoning

Steak Brine
6 cups water
1/4 cup sea salt
2 teaspoons whole peppercorns
4-6 cloves garlic, smashed

Sweet Poultry/Pork Brine
2 quarts chicken broth
1 cup white vinegar
2 cups no-iodine added table salt (non-iodine)
2 cups honey or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
2 tablespoons whole cloves
8-10  cloves garlic, smashed

Smokey Poultry/Pork/Steak Brine
4 quarts water
2/3 cup sea salt
2 teaspoons whole peppercorns
4-6 cloves garlic, smashed
1 onion, sliced
1 tablespoon liquid smoke

Hawaiian Poultry/Pork Brine
4 quarts pineapple juice
2 oranges, quartered with peel
1 lime, quartered with peel
2 cups brown sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1 1/3 cups soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 cup maple syrup
1 cup no-iodine added salt (1 1/2 cups Kosher or coarse salt)
6 cloves garlic, cut into halves
4-6 whole bay leaves
2 tablespoons red pepper, crushed

Cornedbeef/Pastrami Brine
4 quarts water
1 cup kosher salt
10-12 cloves garlic, smashed
3 tablespoons pickling spices
1/4 teaspoons juniper berries
8 bay leaves

Italian Brine for Pork/Beef/Steak
6 cups water
¼ cup kosher salt
¼ cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons dijon mustard
1 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/4 cup fresh oregano, chopped
1 tablespoon rosemary, chopped
6 cloves garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons sugar or sugar substitute (I love me some stevia)
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Low-Carb Double Chocolate Bundt Cake

Low-Carb Double Chocolate Bundt Cake

I made this cake the other night and ate the whole thing in one sitting. Dangerous doesn’t even begin to describe the flavor of this!!!
Low-Carb Double Chocolate Bundt Cake
Low-Carb Double Chocolate Bundt Cake Ingredients
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup organic cocoa powder
½ tablespoon instant coffee
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of sea salt
5 free range organic large eggs, room temperature
1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup coconut oil or grass fed butter
1/3 cup equivalence of stevia or sweetener
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Chocolate Frosting Ingredients
1/2 cup organic cocoa powder
2/3 cup equivalence sweetener for low carb or honey for Paleo (sweeten to taste)
2 tablespoons melted grass fed butter
¼ teaspoon vanilla

Bundt Cake Topping
½ cup sugar-free chocolate chips

Low-Carb Double Chocolate Bundt Cake Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine the coconut flour, cocoa powder, instant coffee, baking soda, and sea salt.

In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, vanilla extract, coconut oil, stevia and lemon juice.

Add the dry ingredients in 3 separate batches to the wet and whisk together.

Butter the small Bundt pan and cover with cocoa powder, pour the mixture in and bang the bottom to get all the air bubbles out.

Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Allow it to cool for 5 minutes before removing it from the pan.

Chocolate Frosting Directions
Combine the ingredients together and pour over the top of the cake.

Top with the sugar-free chocolate chips.

Chocolate Protein Powder Pork Rind Pancakes

Chocolate Protein Powder Pork Rind Pancakes

Yes, you read that right! I made myself some chocolate pork rind pancakes and they were amazing. I think i found my latest addiction!

Chocolate Protein Powder Pork Rind Pancakes
Yields one gorgeous pancake.

Ingredients
1/4 cup pork rinds
4 eggs
1 scoop protein powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon stevia
4 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon butter

Directions
Combine the ingredients together (all but the butter) in a blender and pulse on high then turn on for a minute until all of the ingredients have combined together.

You can use the batter immediately or leave overnight in the refrigerator. I prefer the consistency and texture when I leave it overnight.

Turn the stove on to medium heat and add a medium sized heavy bottomed pan. Add the butter to the pan and pour the mixture in.

Turn the heat down to low and allow it to cook covered for 5 minutes. Flip and cook for an additional 2-3 until golden brown.

Serve with berries or just with whipped cream.

Ghee

Ghee: The Gift of The Gods

Ghee is truly a gift from the Gods! I have to say that as an Indian, this is a huge staple in my diet. When my mom was a young girl, everything in their house was fried in coconut oil or ghee. That was just the way they rolled back then. I liked their style!

See my YouTube video oh the benefits of Ghee.

I know there is a huge misconception that is fat is bad, that is whack (sorry, I just had to go there.) Please refer to my previous post on butter (which includes my recipe for butter chicken) for further information.

While I have you here, I want to break down the main reasons ghee is amazing (aside from the fact it tastes amazing!)

High Smoke Point (250 °C  482 °F).
This means that it won’t break down when cooking and you get to keep all of the benefits of it. Compare this to extra virgin olive oil which has a smoking point of 207°C, 405°F.

Here is a list of oils and smoke points, just so you are fully educated.

Oil
Smoke Point
Grape Seed
485ºF or 252ºC
Avocado
480ºF or 249ºC
Sesame
410ºF or 210ºC
Canola
400ºF or 204ºC
Macadamia
385ºF or 196ºC

 

Not Going Bad Anytime Soon
They have discovered ghee in temples in Indian that are a few decades old and it is still good. Unlike butter, ghee has been cooked down and the milk solids removed so it won’t go bad any time soon. I don’t recommend that you store it away for years but it can stand on your counter and still be good for a few months, don’t worry- it won’t last that long.

Fat is PHAT!
Ghee is comprised of full spectrum short, medium and long chain fatty acids, both unsaturated and saturated. What does this mean for you?

Ghee has good fats in it which can raise HDL (good) cholesterol just as much, if not more, protecting the body from the bad (LDL) cholesterol levels and heart disease.

Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) are fatty acids that are naturally found in “super foods” such as coconuts, palm oil, and ghee. What are MCTs and what does it mean for you?

These smaller chain lengths means that the fats are readily absorbed by the liver and more quickly metabolized so you get faster fuel. These fats aren’t turned into fat. Learn more about MCTs here.
Lactose Intolerant? No Worries!
Because ghee has been cooked down from butter, it no longer contains the milk solids which cause your allergies. You can now indulge without guilt!

Nutritious As Well As Delicious
Contains oil soluble vitamins, A D and E.

Vitamin A:
Important for your eye development.
Creates skin, hair and mucous membranes and keeps everything in working order.
Strengthens your immune system.
Develops bones, teeth and epithelial cells.

Vitamin D:
Helps with calcium and phosphorous absorption.
Regulates calcium movement from bone to blood.
Helps prevent osteoporosis.

Vitamin E:
A potent antioxidant.
Protects the fats that outline ever cell in our body.
Protect fats from free radical damage before we eat them.

Ghee contains Omega 3 and Omega 9, nine phenolic anti-oxidants, as well as numerous other minerals.

Go Grass Fed

Grass-fed butter (which is turned into ghee) has been shown to contain K2 and CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) that have anti-viral properties.

Recent research indicates that CLA may help prevent and even fight cancer cells and also help in the mitigation of type II diabetes. This isn’t found in normal butter, so go organic to get these benefits and more!

GHEE
Yield: Less than 1lb
INGREDIENTS

1 pound of organic, grass-fed unsalted butter

DIRECTIONS

Place the butter in a medium heavy-bottomed sauce pan and bring it to a soft boil from medium-high heat. Allow the butter to boil for 2-3 minutes then turn the heat down to medium.

Foam will form on the top and then disappear.

A second layer of foam will appear, this will be about 8-10 minutes into the process.

The butter will become a beautiful golden color, this is an indicator that the process is complete. Milk solids will brown and sink to the bottom of the pan, keep a close eye because it doesn’t take much for it to burn.

Allow it to cool for a bit and strain out the milk solids and keep the ghee in a metal or glass container.

I like my ghee a bit darker, it is a personal preference for a nice burnt butter flavor. That is why mine is a much deeper color, play with the timings until you find what you like.

Homemade Baking Powder

Homemade Baking Powder

Did you know that baking powder has carbohydrates in it? Yuppers, it does. These hidden carbs tend to add up quite quickly so I like to make my own baking powder and other items that I can’t live without. It is pretty easy and you can premake it and store it for later.

Homemade Baking Powder

Yields a bit more than 1/3 cup.

Ingredients
1/4 cup cream of tartar
2.5 tablespoons baking soda

Directions
Sift together the ingredients several times, I like to do it 4 times to make sure it is well incorporated.
Store in an airtight container in a dry,dark spot.
YouTube Just Food

The Benefits of The Paleo/Low Carb Lifestyle

I hope you are enjoying my YouTube videos as much as I have fun making them. I am continuing the education series by talking about the benefits of this lifestyle.
I have to admit that the results from this lifestyle have been amazing! I have never felt better in my life. I have so much energy and literally jump out of bed in the morning. Here are just a few of the benefits from this lifestyle:

Endless energy-
I no longer require coffee or caffeine to fuel my energy. I feel like I am always wide away and ready to go.

Better skin- I have always had pretty nice skin thanks to great genetics from my parents but I have noticed a glow to my skin and tightness that was never there before.

Better blood panel- Before I started eating this way, I had a thorough blood panel run to see what my standings were. Then, six months later, I had the same panels run to see if this lifestyle had an impact or if it was all a placebo effect.

My cholesterol as whole increased but the ratios were never better. Doctors are now moving away from just looking at the numbers but rather the ratios.

I am no longer anemic. I have been anemic since I was 9 years old and for the first time in forever, my body was accepting the nutrients and iron. This was truly a miracle.

No more leg cramps, this is something I have always battled and this simple lifestyle change allows me to sleep through the night.

Sustained weight loss- I was always one that watched my intake and tried to balance it with my crazy workouts. I have tried everything (and successfully failed at it) and like everyone else, sunk hundreds of dollars in so called programs but ate total crap. Isn’t that funny how we will do anything to look good but never give a second thought to our health?

Never count calories- Since I eat a lot of fats (no, I do not live off of bacon, I could, but I don’t) and proteins, I am never hungry. This is a great feat that keeps cities from being ruined Godzilla-style. I have always been the type of person who gets super hungry and then all of a sudden I am hangry and unknowingly taking it out on everyone around me. Since I started this lifestyle, this no longer happens to me. I am once again the happy, go-lucky Ri that everyone knows and loves.

Clarity- I know this sounds really odd but this lifestyle has led to better sleep: I now require less sleep but the quality of the sleep I receive is amazing. I sleep exactly 7-8 hours but I feel amazing when I wake up. When I am awake, I have such clarity and focus. I think this comes from the nutrients in the foods that I eat.

These are just a few of the benefits of the diet, why wouldn’t you choose to eat healthier foods that make you feel amazing? Start a 30-day challenge today to see what results you get!

May your stomach always be full and your plate always emptied.

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