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I underestimated the hotness of my jalapenos and ended up with tingly lips when I touched them after washing my hands multiple times.

6 boneless skinless chicken thighs

granulated garlic

salt and pepper

1 large onion, diced

2 Tbsp. butter

10 jalapenos, halved lengthwise and seeded

8 oz cream cheese

4 oz grated cheddar

1-2 cups salsa

Preheat the broiler with a large cast iron pan in the oven. Season the chicken with the garlic, salt and pepper. Arrange on the cast iron pan and broil for about 6 minutes per side or until cooked through. Slice the chicken thighs.

Broil the jalapenos until they’re a bit browned and bubbling.

Meanwhile, fry the onion in the butter until soft. Stir in the cream cheese.

Arrange half the jalapenos in a single layer on a 9×9 pan. Spread half the cream cheese mixture on top. Spread half the salsa on top. Repeat the layers. Sprinkle the cheddar on top.

Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes or until hot and bubbling.

On the up side, I’ve had some good salads the past few days. Thinly sliced steak with frisee, tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Montreal steak spiced capicollo with tomatoes, romaine, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. And I picked up more of the capicollo (0 g carb per serving) and some ham (1 g carb per 70 g) today in preparation for salads during the week.

My trip to Costco was also good on the low carb front – olive oil packed tuna, sliced almonds, olive oil, tomatoes, eggs, avocado oil mayo (Chosen Foods still isn’t my favourite but I don’t want the canola and soy oil and I haven’t gotten to Whole Foods to try the other commercial brand), salsa (I’ve been craving it on my eggs) and tea bags.

I had some avocados get overripe, but I’m eating the parts that are still good, which usually amounts to half the avocado.

On the downside, my weight is really high – over 222 the last time I looked.

It’s crazy how many carbs a lot of prepared meats have – I rejected smoked sausage, cheddar smoked sausage, bologna, kielbasa, and pepperettes today because they had too many carbs.

Of course, it’s a bit on the absurd side to be so picky about a few carbs in meat when I had several servings of bread this weekend. But I’m trying to do better.

My weight was up above 220 again this morning. I’m not sure why – yesterday I went for wings but I had them unbreaded/unfloured and with a vinegary, not sweet, sauce. And I skipped a beer in favour of a 9 oz glass of dry red wine. I expect it’s just a blip.

I had a not-so-great dental checkup for the first time since I started eating keto. It’s amazing how quickly uneven compliance can show up in a dental exam.

It’s nothing that needs addressing now – some softer spots between my teeth that could turn into cavities – but it gives me another good reason to stick with keto. (My tooth brushing habits haven’t changed.) My dentist told me to stay away from pop and sugar-sweetened beverages, which thankfully is not an issue for me.

Lately, I’ve been drinking iced tea with erythritol and rhubarb juice. (I blend rhubarb then squeeze the juice by hand through a strainer. It’s good with stevia, too.)

Yesterday, I ate keto all day except a chocolate croissant. That’s a pretty big exception, but I was pleased that I didn’t use the croissant as an excuse to go off plan the rest of the day.

Remove the stems from a bunch of green beans. Toss them with oil and salt and arrange them on a baking sheet. Put it in the oven and turn the oven to broil. After 5 minutes, stir the green beans  and return them to the oven. After 5 minutes, check if the beans have browned a bit. If not, stir them and continue broiling for another couple minutes. When they’ve browned a bit, turn off the oven and leave the green beans in the oven for about 20 minutes to finish cooking. They’ll go a bit wrinkly and be nice and tender.

It was the sort of weekend where it would have been easy to eat high carb but, for the most part, I didn’t!

Friday, when there’s beer and chips at the afternoon meeting, I had pistachios instead.

Saturday, I was babysitting at a friend’s house, but I had eggs and bacon for breakfast and sliced tomatoes with bacon, cheese, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar for lunch. For dinner, a friend took me out for my birthday and we had thai mango salad, green curry chicken, grilled chicken, and sweet basil beef. Yes, there was sugar in some of the dishes, but we skipped the (delicious) rice.

Today, I was still babysitting but I brought some of my flax pancake mix with me and had a flax pancake with unsweetened peanut butter for breakfast. For lunch, I had chicken fingers (not so low carb) with butter, sautéed carrots, and a dill pickle.

This doesn’t count an assortment of lower carb snacks – Atkins bars, cheese, nuts, etc.

I hope I’ve turned a corner where it’ll start feeling normal again to stay on program.

I picked up a huge tray of boneless skinless chicken thighs from Costco because they’re convenient. I ate a couple of these with a couple of sliced tomatoes for dinner.

4 boneless skinless chicken thighs

2 garlic cloves, pressed

2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar

Combine all the ingredients and let the chicken marinate for 20 minutes. About 5 minutes before the chicken is done marinating, put a cast iron pan in the oven and turn the oven on to broil. After the chicken has marinated, remove the chicken thighs from the marinade and arrange them in the pan. Discard the marinade. Broil for 5 minutes, then flip and broil for 5 minutes more. Confirm that the chicken is cooked through. Eat.

I made this recipe low-ish carb by using VitaFiber syrup instead of sugar. It’s not something I’d eat often, but it was a nice change.

Yesterday had the potential to be disastrous, low carb-wise. After work, I needed to rush off to a fundraiser and didn’t have time to eat. The only food at the fundraiser was chips, chocolate bars, and pop.

Before the fundraiser, I had an iced coffee with probably 1/2 cup of heavy cream and I brought a bottle of water to the fundraiser. And I didn’t have anything to eat there! I was hungry but not stupidly hungry when I got home. (I had eggs and ham when I got home.) Heavy cream for the win!

Breakfast: 4 medium eggs with sriracha, cold brew coffee with heavy cream

Snack: Atkins bar, almonds, tea and coffee with table cream

Lunch: Homemade burger and coleslaw, 2 small squares 70% cacao chocolate

Snacks: Atkins bar and 2 babybel cheese

Dinner: Cold-brew coffee with heavy cream, eggs and ham with sriracha mayo

This is very simple, but I like the combination:

Put a piece of trout on a large piece of parchment paper. Fold the edges to make a packet.

Bake until cooked. I baked from frozen, so it took about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, slice an avocado. After the trout is done, put it on the plate with the avocado.

Sprinkle lemon or lime juice, soy sauce, and sriracha over the avocado and trout.

Yum!