Keto Omelet with Bacon 🥓

 

Keto Omelet with Bacon

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: Easy

Last year I gave the Keto diet a try and was pleasantly surprised when my doctor told me to keep doing what I was doing as my labs came back great and I lost 25 pounds! So what did I do? I went to Italy! When we returned from our trip it was very hard to go back on Keto 100%. Well, Teresa is off to Greece so I'm back on Keto. For those of you eating Keto, this is a quick and easy breakfast that satiates you until dinner time and it's a tasty way to start your day. You don't have to follow a Keto diet to enjoy this hearty breakfast!🥓 😋

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs, beat well with a fork
  • A 1/4-inch thick slice of onion, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 tsp coconut oil (I use LouAna® Coconut Oil, it has no coconut aroma or taste to distract from your other ingredients.)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 slices of bacon (preferably with no antibiotics, sugar-free, & nitrate free)
  •  1-2 Tablespoons shredded Swiss cheese (may be substituted with your favorite cheese)
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley for garnish

 

    Directions

    1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
    2. Line a small baking sheet with foil and place the 3 slices of bacon on top.
    3. Cook 4 minutes then turn and cook another 2-4 minutes. Drain on paper towels (You will have perfectly rendered bacon fat that can be stored in a glass container in the refrigerator for future sautéing).
    4. In a small skillet on medium heat place 1/2 tsp coconut oil.
    5. Add the bell peppers and onions, salt & pepper. Saute until translucent.
    6. Lower heat & add the eggs and stir quickly to mix in the peppers & onions.
    7.  Gently cook for 1-2 minutes or until the bottom is set and can be flipped over.
    8. Flip eggs and sprinkle Swiss cheese on top.
    9. Cook another 1-2 minutes until eggs are fully cooked but not overcooked.
    10. Slide omelet onto a dish and sprinkle with chopped parsley.
    11. Add the cooked bacon and enjoy!

    Notes: This recipe is naturally Gluten-Free.

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    Penne Alla Vodka – Gluten Free

     

    Barbara first made Penne Ala Vodka for her son’s engagement party using a recipe from a friend of a friend. It has undergone a few changes over the years before it became an all-time family favorite. As you may know, whenever possible we always make a gluten-free version of our recipes for Teresa’s husband Jack.  We don’t want him to ever feel left out. This recipe was very easy to convert since you just replace regular penne pasta with Gluten-Free penne pasta.  Thanks to great improvements in gluten-free products, having Celiac’s disease no longer means you have to miss out on delicious pasta meals.

    This recipe is delicious and not your typical restaurant flavor. If you’re not a fan of a little heat, omit the cayenne but it’s really not a strong kick. 

    Ingredients

    Servings: 8-10

    • Prepare basic tomato sauce ahead of time (see recipe link below)
    • 2 lbs. Barilla Gluten-Free Penne pasta with the lines (sauce sticks to it better)
    • 6 Tablespoons of salted butter
    • 8-10 large garlic cloves, minced
    • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (or more for a bigger kick)
    • 6-8 shakes red pepper flakes (more if you like it hotter)
    • 1/2 lb. very thin sliced Prosciutto, shred into pieces with your fingers
    • 1 tsp pink Himalayan salt
    • dash of black pepper
    • 4 ounces vodka
    • 1 qt heavy cream (light cream can also be used)
    • 4 cups of already prepared Basic Tomato Sauce, (or your favorite red sauce)
    • 4 heaping handfuls of Pecorino Romano grated cheese (approximately 2 cups)
    • 1 lb. mozzarella cheese,  shredded or diced

    Instructions

    • Saute garlic and prosciutto in melted butter in a deep skillet.
    • Add salt, cayenne pepper & red pepper flakes.
    • Add vodka to deglaze and stir well.
    • Add cream, red sauce, and Pecorino Romano cheese. 
    • Simmer & stir until it comes to a boil, don’t overcook.
    • Add mozzarella just after it comes to a boil to avoid mozzarella from balling up.
    • Pour 2 ladles of vodka sauce over cooked penne to coat.
    • Use remaining sauce to top individual servings and pour the additional sauce in a gravy boat for the table.
    • Garnish with fresh basil leaves. 


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    Penne Alla Vodka

     

    Barbara first made Penne Ala Vodka for her son’s engagement party using a recipe from a friend of a friend. It has undergone a few changes over the years before it became an all-time family favorite…her granddaughter Stefani could live on this alone! Stefani recently requested that Barbara make it for her baby shower, and she was disappointed when there weren’t any leftovers to take home to Virginia! It’s always a big crowd pleaser and a must have for every holiday dinner.

    This recipe is delicious and not your typical restaurant flavor. If you’re not a fan of a little heat, omit the cayenne but it’s really not a strong kick. 

    Ingredients

    Servings: 8-10

    • Prepare basic tomato sauce ahead of time (see recipe link below)
    • 2 lbs. Penne pasta with the lines (sauce sticks to it better)
    • 6 Tablespoons of salted butter
    • 8-10 large garlic cloves, minced
    • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (or more for a bigger kick)
    • 6-8 shakes red pepper flakes (more if you like it hotter)
    • 1/2 lb. very thin sliced Prosciutto, shred into pieces with your fingers
    • 1 tsp pink Himalayan salt
    • dash of black pepper
    • 4 ounces vodka
    • 1 qt heavy cream (light cream can also be used)
    • 4 cups of already prepared Basic Tomato Sauce, (or your favorite red sauce)
    • 4 heaping handfuls of Pecorino Romano grated cheese (approximately 2 cups)
    • 1 lb. mozzarella cheese,  shredded or diced

    Instructions

    • Saute garlic and prosciutto in melted butter in a deep skillet.
    • Add salt, cayenne pepper & red pepper flakes.
    • Add vodka to deglaze and stir well.
    • Add cream, red sauce, and Pecorino Romano cheese. 
    • Simmer & stir until it comes to a boil, don’t overcook.
    • Add mozzarella just after it comes to a boil to avoid mozzarella from balling up.
    • Pour 2 ladles of vodka sauce over cooked penne to coat.
    • Use remaining sauce to top individual servings and pour the additional sauce in a gravy boat for the table.
    • Garnish with fresh basil leaves. 


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    The Best Gluten-Free Meatballs – Twiins Style

     

     

    The Best Gluten-Free Meatballs - Twiins Style

    • Servings: Yields 14-16 meatballs
    • Difficulty: Easy

    One of our best Sunday morning memories is of our mother frying meatballs for our Sunday dinner. There is something to be said for the wonderful aroma of meatballs frying along with the anticipation of the meal to follow, as it was usually shared with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. It wasn't just a meal...it was an event! Sundays were always special in our home because we would get to spend time with our cousins who we had so much fun with. As soon as Mom started placing the cooked meatballs in the bowl we would sneak into the kitchen to grab them out of the bowl while they were still hot; a tradition that our children and husbands still carry on today! Most of our followers know my husband Jack has celiac disease and I've had to adapt all our recipes to gluten-free when cooking for him. Converting some recipes can be quite challenging; however, I used some really good GF Italian style bread crumbs to substitute for the Italian bread and Jack loves them! Without a doubt the best Italian style Gluten-Free meatballs ever! 😋😋

    Ingredients

    • 1 lb ground beef 80-85% lean/20-15% fat
    • 1/2 cup whole milk
    •  4 ounces Aleia’s Italian Bread Crumbs* (please see note below)
    • 4-5 garlic cloves, finely chopped or grated
    • 1/2 large onion, finely chopped
    • 3 Extra-Large eggs
    • 1 ½ large handfuls grated Pecorino Romano cheese
    • 1 handful fresh parsley, chopped
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • EVOO (for frying)                                                                                                                                           

    Directions

    1. Place ground meat in a medium size mixing bowl, break up with a fork and set aside.
    2. In a small bowl, soak bread crumbs in  1/2 cup milk until completely absorbed (about 2-3 minutes).  This should yield about 1 cup of bread crumbs. (If too loose add a little more bread crumbs. If too dry, add a little more milk).
    3. Place bread crumbs on top of ground meat.
    4. Add the onion, garlic, salt, and pepper to combine well.
    5. Make a well in the center of the meat mixture and place all the eggs, Pecorino Romano cheese, and the parsley.
    6. With a large fork scramble the eggs, cheese, and parsley in the well, then start to combine into the entire meat mixture. You can do this best with your hands that are scrupulously clean or with gloves…your preference.
    7. Once well combined (don’t over mix) scoop out about 1/2 handful of meat mixture and roll into a ball and place on parchment or waxed paper. Continue making meatballs until all meat has been formed.
    8. In a large skillet pour enough EVOO to half the size of your meatball. Let the oil get hot, then working in batches, brown all sides (Don’t overload, allow each meatball some breathing room).
    9. When meatballs are browned and crisp remove to a paper towel lined bowl or tray. Repeat until all meatballs are cooked.
    10. 30 minutes before your tomato sauce is ready, place cooked meatballs in the tomato sauce and continue cooking the sauce.
    11. Serve with your favorite pasta and enjoy!

    Notes:  These meatballs are delicious as a stand-alone meal with or without tomato sauce. Make them smaller and they become a delicious appetizer

     As a substitute for the breadcrumbs above, I have also used with great success UDI’s Gluten-free white bread soaked in milk or Against the Grain gluten-free baguettes soaked in milk. Against the Grain is my preference; however, this brand is not available in the Wilmington, NC area.

     

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    The Best Napoletana Meatballs – Twiins Style

     

    The Best Napoletana Meatballs - Twiins Style

    • Servings: Yields 30-35

    One of our best Sunday morning memories is of our mother frying meatballs for our Sunday dinner. There is something to be said for the wonderful aroma of meatballs frying along with the anticipation of the meal to follow, as it was usually shared with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. It wasn't just a meal...it was an event! Sundays were always special in our home because we would get to spend time with our cousins who we had so much fun with. As soon as Mom started placing the cooked meatballs in the bowl we would sneak into the kitchen to grab them out of the bowl while they were still hot; a tradition that our children and husbands still carry on today! 😋 😋

    Ingredients

    • 2½ lbs ground beef 80-85% lean/20-15% fat (or 2½ lbs of  ground beef, veal, and pork mixture)
    • 1/3 – 1/2 loaf day-old Italian bread soaked in milk (should yield 8 squeezed-out meatball sized mounds of bread)
    • 10 garlic cloves, finely chopped or grated
    • 1/2 large onion, finely chopped
    • 6 eggs
    • 3 large handfuls grated Pecorino Romano cheese
    • 1 handful fresh parsley, chopped
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • EVOO (for frying)                                                                                                                                           

    Directions

    1. Place ground meat in a large mixing bowl, break up with a fork and set aside.
    2. In another large bowl, soak bread in enough milk to cover. Let bread absorb milk then squeeze out milk between your hands. (You should have 7-8 handfuls, discard milk)
    3. Place squeezed out bread on top of ground meat.
    4. Add the onion, garlic, salt, and pepper to combine well.
    5. Make a well in the center of the meat mixture and place all the eggs, Pecorino Romano cheese, and the parsley.
    6. With a large fork scramble the eggs, cheese, and parsley in the well, then start to combine into the entire meat mixture. You can do this best with your hands that are scrupulously clean or with gloves…your preference.
    7. Once well combined (don’t over mix) scoop out about 1/2 handful of meat mixture and roll into a ball and place on parchment or waxed paper. Continue making meatballs until all meat has been formed.
    8. In a large skillet pour enough EVOO to about 3/4 inches in depth. Let the oil get hot, then working in batches, brown all sides (Don’t overload, allow each meatball some breathing room).
    9. When meatballs are browned and crisp remove to a paper towel lined bowl or tray. Repeat until all meatballs are cooked.
    10. 30 minutes before your tomato sauce is ready, place cooked meatballs in the tomato sauce and continue cooking the sauce.
    11. Serve with your favorite pasta and enjoy!

    Notes:  These meatballs freeze well and can be used at a later date. They are delicious as a stand-alone meal with or without tomato sauce. Make them smaller and they become a delicious appetizer, add mozzarella & some tomato sauce for meatball parmigiana heroes!😋😋

     

     

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    Creamy Garlic Shrimp & Scallops with Fettuccine – Twiins Style

     

    Creamy Garlic Shrimp & Scallops with Fettuccine - Twiins Style

    • Servings: 6
    • Difficulty: Intermediate

    Ingredients

    • 1/3 cup EVOO, plus 2-3 Tablespoons
    • 10 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
    • 2 large shallot heads (4 big cloves)
    • 8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced thick
    • 2 cups white wine (we use Chardonnay)
    • 3 Tablespoons fresh parsley
    • 3 Tablespoons fresh basil
    • 3 Tablespoons fresh thyme (or 3 tsp dried)
    • 3 cups heavy cream or Half-and-Half cream
    • 2 lbs sea scallops (20-30 count)
    • 1½ – 2 lbs extra-large shrimp, peeled & deveined
    • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
    • sprinkle of garlic powder on scallops before sautéing
    • 2 tsp lemon zest for garnish (optional)
    • 3 sprigs fresh basil for garnish (optional)
    • 1½- 2 lbs cooked fettuccine or angel hair pasta (use Gluten-Free pasta if gluten is an issue)

      Directions

      1. Heat pasta water to boiling then lower to simmer before preparing the meal.
      2. Pat dry the scallops and shrimp on paper towels. Cover with paper towels and set aside.
      3. In a large skillet, heat 1/3 cup EVOO on medium then sauté shallots and garlic until translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook another 3-4 minutes.
      4. Pour the white wine into the skillet to deglaze.
      5. Add the parsley, basil, and thyme and cook until liquid is reduced by half.
      6. Transfer mixture into a medium saucepan.
      7. Add the cream & half the Pecorino Romano cheese into the medium saucepan and cook over medium-low heat until reduced by half (about 15 minutes).
      8. In the large skillet add 2-3 Tablespoons of EVOO. Using medium-high heat, allow the oil to get hot enough then add the scallops and sprinkle garlic powder on top. Sauté on both sides just until they turn opaque & feel springy with a pair of tongs. Don’t overcook. Remove to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm.
      9. Bring pasta water up to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and return to pot. Cover and set aside until remaining seafood (shrimp) is cooked.
      10. Now sauté the shrimp in the same skillet until the shrimp just turn pink. Remove and place the shrimp in the platter with the scallops, continue to cover with foil.
      11. Add 1/2 the cream sauce to the large skillet and quickly toss with the cooked pasta. Mix well and plate the pasta in individual pasta dishes. Pour remaining cream sauce in a small gravy boat to add extra sauce if desired.
      12. Top with asparagus & arrange the seafood on top, garnish with extra sauce, grated cheese, lemon zest, and sprigs of basil, if desired.
      13. Enjoy!

      Notes: Substitute with Gluten-Free pasta for a delicious Gluten-Free meal.

       

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      Split Pea Soup With Ham 😋 😋

       

      Split Pea Soup With Ham

      • Servings: 6
      • Difficulty: Easy

      Now that Easter is over, what do you do with all the leftover ham? There's no better time than now to make my hearty, delicious, and comforting split pea soup using all the leftover ham including the bone. Jack looks forward to this soup so much that while it's cooking on the stove he's always asking 'is it done yet'....just like Barbara's dog, Lexi, barking while she waits to be fed! I think you get the picture!!! 🤣

      Ingredients

      • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
      • 2 cups chopped yellow onion
      • 1 cup celery, diced
      • 1 cup carrot, diced
      • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
      • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
      •  3 garlic cloves, minced
      • 1 lb dried split peas, rinsed
      • 1 meaty ham bone (leftover from holiday dinner)
      • 2 small bay leaves
      • 2 tsp thyme, divided
      • 7 cups Swanson Bone Broth Chicken or Swanson Low-Sodium Chicken Broth, both are gluten-free
      • 1 cup water
      • 1½ cups diced or shredded ham

       

        Directions

        1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter.
        2. Add the onion, celery, & carrots.
        3. Cook the vegetables on a low flame until vegetables are soft and just starting to show golden color, about 8 minutes.
        4. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute.
        5. Add the split peas and stir to combine.
        6. Add the ham bone, bay leaves, and 1 tsp of thyme.
        7. Stir in chicken bone broth and water.
        8. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for approximately 90 minutes.
        9. Stir often until peas are cooked down and soup has your desired consistency. (Add more water or broth if it thickens too much).
        10. Add the diced or shredded ham 10-15 minutes before the soup is done.
        11. When done, remove the ham bone and bay leaves. If any fatty chunks fell off the bone during cooking remove them as well.
        12. Add remaining tsp of thyme and stir.
        13. Ladle hot soup into your favorite bowl and enjoy!

        Notes: This recipe does not contain any flour, and is naturally gluten-free if you use our recommended Swanson brands. It’s been my experience that other brands may contain wheat so please make sure you read the labels carefully.

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        Valerie’s Pan-Roasted Cauliflower with Pignolis

         

        Valerie's Pan-Roasted Cauliflower with Pignolis

        • Servings: 6
        • Difficulty: Easy

        Today my dear friend Valerie Kachura served this delicious cauliflower side dish while hosting our weekly social bridge group.  Now, I'm not the biggest fan of cauliflower but I know it has many health benefits so when I saw our good friend Roz's face light up with delight, I knew I had to try it! It was delicious! I think this will be my new favorite side-dish.  Thank you, Valerie, for feeding our group so well, and graciously letting me share your recipe.  😋❤

        Ingredients

        • 1 large head of cauliflower, rinsed and separated by large florets
        • 1/4 cup pignolis
        • 3-4 garlic cloves, crushed
        • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
        • 1/2 tsp. ground curry powder
        • 1/4 -1/2 cup Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
        • 1/4 tsp. pink  Himalayan salt
        • 1/4 tsp.  black pepper
        • 2-3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

        Directions

        1. Preheat oven to 350°F
        2. In a large bowl combine, cauliflower, olive oil, salt, pepper, cumin, and curry powder. Mix well.
        3. Place in a casserole dish and bake 20 minutes until almost done.
        4. Sprinkle pignolis and grated Pecorino Romano cheese over the top of cauliflower.
        5. Place casserole back into the oven for an additional 10 minutes until starting to turn golden brown.
        6. Remove from oven and serve.

        Notes: This is a naturally gluten-free side dish

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        Aunt Rosemarie’s Scrumptious Ricotta Sheet Cake

         
        Our Aunt Rosemarie was always our fashion role model as we were growing up. Her beautiful red hair is her signature look and she always dresses so beautifully. Aunt Rosemarie always had a way of making us feel so special. Whenever we visited her in Brooklyn, as children or as adults, she cooked so much food that she could have fed all of Brooklyn! We have fond memories of the long folding tables that she and our uncle Ralph set up in the living room to accommodate our large family.  For us, it was like going to a fine Italian restaurant, enjoying appetizers, pasta, main dish, and desserts.  The meal was endless and oh so good! We are happy to share her delicious ricotta sheet cake that she gave us during a recent phone call. This cake is a real crowd pleaser, extremely moist and so easy to make. ❤️❤️

        Servings: 12     Prep Time: 10 minutes      Bake Time: 1 hour 25 minutes   Difficulty: Easy

        INGREDIENTS

        • 1 box of your favorite yellow cake mix (to make our Gluten-Free version, click here)
        • 2 lbs whole milk ricotta cheese
        • 1 cup granulated sugar
        • juice of 1 small lemon or 1 tsp lemon extract
        • 1 tsp vanilla extract
        • 4 eggs
        • fresh blueberries or raspberries
        • powdered sugar 

        DIRECTIONS

        1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
        2. In a medium size bowl mix the ricotta cheese, sugar, eggs, vanilla and lemon juice with a wooden spoon and set aside.
        3. Follow directions on cake mix box and pour into a greased & floured  9 x 13-inch baking pan.
        4. Pour the ricotta mixture directly on top of the cake batter in the pan. No need to spread or stir as the ricotta will sink to the bottom and form a nice layer.
        5. Bake at 350°F for 1 hour and 25 minutes until top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
        6. Cool in the pan placed on a cooling rack. Once cooled cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
        7. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and top with fresh fruit just before serving.
        8. Enjoy!

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