Sometimes the road to temptation starts with just having the bad food in front of you.
For the new year, all four quad members are doing a ketosis diet. All of us have done some version of low-carb dieting before including paleo (6 years of this for C&K), Whole 30, the SCD, and ketosis — all with much success and many pounds lost. The holiday season is always a struggle, though, and we’ve ended up a bit pudgy this year. So, we’ve decided for the new year to all do the same ketosis diet, since it will make cooking for the group much easier if we do it together.
The first step in any low-carb dieting scheme is to clear out all the carbs (temptation) from your house. Since we hate wasting food, we gathered all the carby things from the fridge and freezer and laid it out (above photo).
The following recipe, strange as it may be, is what J came up with. The point of this recipe isn’t to follow it exactly (all of the ingredients are optional), it’s to have the courage to throw something together without buying or wasting anything. It could also be used to clear out leftovers on the verge of going bad. Be creative with your own clear-the-carbs casserole.
Frozen shit (Trader Joe’s mini tacos and taquitos, four hashbrowns)
Trader Joe’s cauliflower pizza crust (also frozen)
8 mini corn tortillas, chopped
Frontera enchilada red chili sauce
1 bell pepper
1/2 red onion
1 can sweet corn
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 cup of leftover stuffing
1 cup of chopped leftover ham
1 bag of mexican blend shredded cheese
1/4 cup pepper jack shredded cheese
Salt to taste
1 brick (6 oz) cream cheese, melted
3 tablespoons jarred chutney
Dash of your favorite salsa
With a kitchen-sink casserole like this, the key is to get all the ingredients cooked to a similar level before it goes into the oven. We started by microwaving the frozen items, including the pizza crust, until they were defrosted. Chop the onion and bell pepper and cook them in a skillet with olive oil, a pinch of salt, and lime juice. Cook until the pepper and onion are soft, then throw the ham in at the end. After a couple of minutes take those items out, and add the chopped tortillas to the pan with a little more oil. Cook until they start to crisp, take out and let dry on a paper towel.
First grease a 9×13 glass dish with whatever you like (we used a kitchen essential: spray coconut oil). Break up the cauliflower crust for the bottom layer. chop up the defrosted tacos/taquitos/hashbrowns (leaving 1 taquito for the top!) and intersperse them with the cauliflower crust. Add the tortillas, stuffing and drizzle the enchilada sauce over the top.
It’s getting real weird now! Add a layer of the Mexican cheese first, then your bell pepper/onion/ham mix. Open up that can of corn, drain, and spread around at least half the can. We finished the top with a layer of pepper jack cheese and a chopped taquito.
(insert unbaked casserole pic)
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. The taquitos on top should be crispy, and the cheese should be melted and starting to brown. The final casserole looks like this:
(insert baked casserole)
We made a sauce of a melted block of cream cheese with the chutney mixed in. We topped the whole thing with green salsa and lettuce.
(insert final plated)
Yeah, it looks weird. Yeah, there’s a lot of random ingredients, but that’s the whole point. It cleaned out a ton of carbs from the fridge, and it was fun to make. We figured, if it turned out terribly, it was no loss. We were pleasantly surprised when it was delicious. So go forth, make your own clean-the-fridge or clear-the-carbs casserole. Let us know what weird things you put in yours in the comments.