The Keto Way: Burger Steak with Mushroom Sauce

My weight loss journey is part of a bigger picture. Sure, I do want to permanently lose all this unnecessary fat. However, the biggest part of the reason why I’m so adamant to lose weight right now is because I’m going home to the Philippines after 15 years and I’m bridesmaid to one of my best friends. Superficial, sure. Let me tell you more about it in later posts.

Right now, let me share one of the easiest low-carb recipes I prepared tonight. I’ve always been curious about the Ketogenic Diet and I’ve read a lot of articles about it. It’s a big factor why I was able to get started this New Year. I give up sugar, processed foods and stick to low-carb food, I’m golden. Except, I did not really give up sugar entirely since I’m still consuming sugary fruits and honey. My biggest weakness in life are chocolates and pastries. I don’t even drink soda nor juice anymore and it’s been 15 years since I’ve drank a liter of Coke in one sitting. My mantra is ‘drop the sweets, drop the pounds.’ The Keto diet seems to be the easiest thing to follow.

After falling off the wagon two weeks ago, I am back and this time, I’m going to stick to what makes me feel good.

I’m researching recipes online because I don’t want to keep eating bacon and eggs just because I’m free to do so in this diet. I can’t give up meat just yet and go vegetarian so I decided to modify one of my favorites from Jollibee, a Filipino fast food chain that serves Burger Steak in creamy mushroom sauce. It reminds of me of my high school days, the fun lunches with friends, and never-ending laughters from everything we observe around us or because sticking a straw in a styrofoam food container to use as antenna and holding it like a big cell phone is the funniest thing in every 16-year old girl’s mind.

Dropping the white rice (because, Keto) and sticking to low carb options, I present to you my very own version of Burger Steak with Mushroom Sauce and steamed asparagus on the side.

burger steak

The mushroom sauce came out thinner but it doesn’t compromise the flavor. I can probably update the sauce in my next posts. For now, this is how it came out.

If there’s one thing that stands out from my recipe is the fact that I used organic whipping cream which I picked up from Sprouts and organic/grass-fed ground beef.

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Keep in mind, the only reason I went for organic is because they were the cheaper options, believe it or not. Sure, Keto diet will tell you to always choose grass-fed meat but in my opinion, it doesn’t have to be expensive to be healthy. Always follow your gut and use common sense at all times. Too much of either good or bad is still too much and that can’t be good in the end.

I live with my best friend who is more frugal than me. She will read this post and she will nod along in agreement. If there’s one person who taught me how to shop smart, it would be her. She’ll tell you to hit two or three grocery stores in close vicinity from each other, of course, if it means saving money.

Here’s how you make it…

Ingredients

For the burger

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 small minced yellow onion
  • 1 or 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup almond meal (or almond flour)
  • 1/2 tsp of Worcestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp butter (or coconut oil or olive oil)
  1. Combine all ingredients mentioned above in a bowl and mix.
  2. Scoop mixture, mold into ball, and on a flat surface, flatten with palm or bottom of a small plate. Do not press too hard, just enough to slowly flatten the patty.
  3. In a grill pan, heat butter.
  4. Once pan is heated, place burger patties.
  5. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side until desired doneness of the meat is reached.

For the mushroom sauce

  • 2-3 cups thinly sliced mushrooms
  • 1 pint of heavy whipping cream
  • 1 small minced yellow onion
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp butter (or coconut oil or olive oil)
  1. Heat a skillet with butter.
  2. Add onions.
  3. Add garlic.
  4. Add mushrooms.
  5. Add heavy whipping cream. Stir.
  6. Place sauce into boil, reduce heat. Simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Pour a serving of mushroom sauce on top of the cooked burger steak.

Steam asparagus or any green veggies on the side.

Enjoy!

Uphill, Downhill, Uphill

Three weeks later and I still remember how to log in to this blog site. Hurray! I must admit, though, that is not the reason why I’ve been MIA. I fell off the wagon. That’s right. I fell off the fat-melting, muscle-aching, mighty wagon of health wellness and fitness.

It started with a trip to the movie theatre to watch ‘The Greatest Showman’ which took me about five minutes to remember while typing this post. “I’ll have popcorn”, I said. I’ll have popcorn only. And then the inevitable happened. My eyes and my finger were pointing towards the big yellow M&M chocolate bag. Ah! Temptation! I gave in.

These past few days, I binged on a big bag of Nav Rattan, a delicious Indian snack introduced to me by my Indian best friend-slash-sister, 3 bars of Toblerone meant to be put in a box to be sent to the Philippines, and fun sizes of Baby Ruths and Butterfingers. Do you think it’s easy to lose weight? F*** no! Ya think I liked myself after all the sugar I consumed? I did not, but, the more I think about it, the more it weighs me down, therefore, I decide to let go.

This past 2 weeks have not been my proudest moment but I think writing about it here as part of the journey provides comfort, that no matter how much we try at times, we’ll get knocked down, but it’s on whether we stay knocked down or rise up that makes the difference. I plan to rise up from all this and begin a new day. Clean slate. So what if it weren’t the perfect two weeks? At least, I tried my best to start on January 1st but, I know I can’t forever hold on to the first week of the month as if I’ve put all the work already. It’s a continuous process and I’m okay starting all over again.

 

Happiness is a Choice

I didn’t have enough sleep this past week. Hopefully, that changes next week because let’s face it, we need good sleep — it’s just good old science.

I ate an Asian Wonton salad from Corner Bakery today. It was the best 500 calories ever. I ran into an old health & wellness teacher. I didn’t last very long with her and I didn’t really finish my free sessions with her as sponsored by my boss.

Today, it felt different when I saw her. We greeted each other, “Happy New Year!” And hugged like two long lost friends. She’s all about positivity and I admire that about her but my mind was unable to comprehend that she can be the best teacher for me because firstly, I was filled with anxiety and depression at the time and secondly, my boss paid for the sessions and I felt obligated and probably spied on knowing that they know each other very well.

She walked up to us later when she was leaving and asked what our plans for the year. My closest friends at work and I all echoed the same words, “Work, work work.” My former teacher laughed, offered if she can do once-a-week classes in our building. I surprised myself when I said, “Yes, absolutely! Let’s do that!” She was surprised, too.

I guess, the bottomline is, no matter how stressful my job is, there’s always room for happiness. It’s a choice, I understand that now and it’s the best choice.

Perfection leads to nowhere. It’s never going to be the same day every day even the routine because there’s always going to be a curveball.

I commit to let go of perfectionism and just stay in the right course.

I smoke on and off, mostly on but it’s not giving me the best results, health-wise. My 31-year old self comprehends that it’s best to quit but it’s never easy. I always say that and I always fail.

Tonight, I decided it’s best to just do it. I’m wearing my nicotine patch tonight, excited for the vivid dreams, hopefully happy dreams.

It’s okay not to wear the best workout clothes. The important thing is getting on that stationary bike and cycle — 20, 30 minutes is fine. I don’t have to kill myself.

It feels good, but as my body adjusts to all these positive changes, it’s also in pain. Mostly, it’s my head.

I tell myself, “It’s okay.” It’s not a marathon. One day at a time. One second at a time.

I choose happy. It will always be the best choice. It’s okay. I am okay.

My prime weakness: throat-hurting American chocolatess

My heart beats fast as I click my Event Ticker app. 102 days more to go before Philippines. I run to take a quick shower before bed, my thoughts running wild, questioning myself as to why I did not start to lose weight sooner? Why did I not take it seriously last August? Three months and what do I expect? This is vintage me. I was once a student who waited for the last minute to submit a project.

I have no competitive bone in my body. It’s never my goal to beat anyone at anything in school. But, somehow, I managed to run for class president twice and won, twice. Had I lost, I would’ve been okay but I’m always like that. The student leader — indecisive but comes through, anyway. That was high school. 15 years ago. I never thought I’d be in this position right now where I talk about high school like it’s the ancient times. I don’t do that! My parents do that! Joke’s on me.

My thoughts are still unorganized. I just took a Benadryl pill so part of me is half asleep already, not to mention, it’s past 1 AM.

I finished more packing for the boxes I’m sending to the Philippines. I drove to Costco once again and bought more candies. I was surrounded by dozens and dozens of American chocolates — the stuff I’d eat just because it’s fun or because there’s nothing else better to eat so I might as well finish a Snickers bar, M&Ms, and dunk Oreos in a glass of milk in one sitting. My point is, I was not tempted to have a bite, not once, not even a Hershey’s kisses, not a single candy, at all. Proud of myself? Absolutely.

Now, there are 102 days left before Philippines and I’m taking baby steps. I haven’t sweat a lot since January 1st, so tomorrow, I must start exercising.

Breakfast today was purple yam, spinach/bacon/cheese/dried cranberries/egg salad for dinner today. I ate so much fiber today, I visited a public restroom and my personal bathroom several times.

Good night, world.

Enjoy the rapid fire that is my brain.

My bed’s calling me now.

Tick Tock, You Ran Out of 24 Hours

See, I can plan my day. It can go smoothly and it can fly by and I won’t worry but sometimes, it just hits you…there’s never enough time in a day to complete your tasks.

I work from home twice a week and today, as part of my New Year’s resolution (a list that encompasses all leftover, unfulfilled tasks from the past year), I woke up early and read my emails and listed down my to-do list. At 12 noon, my inbox has 50 new unread messages, I’m nowhere near completing my to-do list, and most of the work I did had today for a deadline.

I managed to escape from all the chaos at exactly 5 PM and transitioned to my personal tasks. It wasn’t much a task but more like an impromptu visit to Costco. A little past 8 PM and $200 dollars poorer, I come home to wrap gift bags for family and friends to be sent to the Philippines, my hometown. Now, I’m sitting in my bed at 2 AM, wide awake, wondering where this post is going to take me.

Well, I did start drinking more water today. The goal is a gallon a day which is equivalent to 128 ounces. I drank about 60 ounces of water. I tried to use MyFitnessPal but it kept telling me that it’s “offline.” I uninstalled, reinstalled, uninstalled, reinstalled and to no avail. I went online instead and completed my food diary there.

Did I do good? Sure. I had scrambled eggs with tomatoes and onion for breakfast and protein shake for dinner. Awesome, right? Rewind to the part when I was so emotionally up and down at 3 PM and was so hungry, I’m scouring food from the plastic bag closest to my bed. Sure enough, I found a bunch of opened chips I did not finish on New Year’s Eve. I ate a bag and a half of chips, temporarily satisfying my growling stomach, only to regret the whole 5 minutes I devoured them.

My story will not change unless I do something about it. This is only the beginning. Sure, I failed halfway through my journey today but I deserve a medal for not opening a can of corned beef at 12 midnight. I drank more water instead, additional 20 ounces on top of the 60 I finished earlier, and went to bed.

I’m hungry right now. Sure, I can eat…but, I won’t.

Happy New Year From Someone Who’s Always Hungry…

I’ve tried to come up with ideas how to begin this new site but I’m not going to try harder anymore. It’s 2018, a new year, and it’s filled with possibilities. Well, at least in the next 12 months. Let it be known that this site has been my 6th attempt to creating a weight loss blog site. The previous sites end up with blank pages, empty promises, and zero results.

The difference between this blog site and the other blog sites I’ve created is I’m going to allow myself to let loose. It’s not going to be as pretty as those weight loss blog sites that show you people who’ve already reached their goals. Of course, they’re all smiles. They just made it to the other side! I’m pretty sure I’ll get there, too but, for now, I’ll be that miserable fool at the bottom of the ladder, getting ready to face resistance as I climb to the top. Hopefully, there’s cake on top but of course, positive results, in general as well. Whether it’s losing all my excess weight and reaching my goal or if it’s only 10 pounds by the end of the year, for as long as I did my part, I will be okay with it.

Let’s face it, I’m one of those who struggle to lose weight. It’s genetics, it’s laziness, heck it can also be craziness. I’m okay with my situation now more than I was a year ago but do I regret not starting last year or the year before that? Absolutely. Everything before today is just a memory. There are moments when I feel like I will never, ever, ever amount to anything when it comes to losing weight.

I’m always hungry, or, at least, that’s what I think. I’m always craving for food when I should be doing other things. It’s a challenge and I’ve experimented over the years, only to fail. I’ve become a cliche. I start a blog the first day of the new year and then the site’s lucky to see me post for the next week, and then nada. Zilch. Empty.

That’s how it feels inside of me because I don’t do anything about it even when I know the only way I can be healthier and lose the weight is to just do what’s right. Eat healthy, exercise, do not apologize. I have to. I’m not getting any younger and this can probably be the most gratifying gift to myself.

So, welcome. If you’re like me, struggling to lose the weight, this one’s for you. If you feel like it’s hard to lose the weight and be healthy, well, heck yeah, it is! But it’s not too late. We’re given another year. I say, it’s never too late.