companion blog to the e-book the 24/7 Low Carb Diner

Companion blog to the e-book
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Monday, November 8, 2010

Weekend Big Lots Finds

Bargain shopper that I am, I headed out to Big Lots this weekend. I love finding new things there. It makes grocery shopping a challenge and brings out the hunter in me--stalking low carb bargains rather than big game.

I found three things this week, but one is for dinner and I will let you know how it goes. Eggplant lovers come back later to find out...

This morning was coffee heaven. I am a huge lover of cinnamon coffee. My mom spotted this bag of Christmas flavored coffee for five dollars. Now normally, that is a little pricey for me. It is sometimes easier to add a few drops of coffee flavorings rather than splurge on a gourmet coffee I might not like. Lesson learned with the Lean Bean Coffee I got at Big Lots last summer. Yuck. There were two flavors. Frankly, I can't remember the other because as soon as I saw Iced Gingerbread flavor, I was hooked. My favorite Christmas tea is Gingerbread flavored too, so I had to buy it. Realizing that it is not yet Thanksgiving didn't bother me a bit. See the photo? Yes, that is my coffee travel mug, nicely decorated with my fall insert, filled with Christmas coffee. Usually I am just OCD enough that would drive me nuts. Allowing that mismatch speaks to how much I adore gingerbread flavoring.

I must say this product got a thumbs up from me! Worth the price. I checked for the company online. Looks like a quality brand. Some are even sold as fundraisers to groups, who sell the same size bag (12 ounces)for $10-$12. If I look at it that way, my $5 bag is quite a bargain after all.

I also spotted a new sweetener which I have never tried. Ideal brand is a blend of Xylitol and Sucralose. I loved the flavor. In the past, I have avoided Xylitol, knowing it is toxic to dogs. I have too many dogs, and one who is a terrible trash raider. Another, who has been known to swipe food off the coffee table when we aren't watching, is also a concern. I fret that John will toss his gum or leave it out where the pups might get it. We think my Mandy, the trash raiding Schnoodle, did get some gum once, but she seems to have no ill effect. The day before we adopted her, she ate an entire bag of Dove chocolates from under her previous master's Christmas tree. She seems to have a strong constitution. Maybe she is part goat, who knows? But I am getting off topic here, so back to the sweetener.

Big Lots is selling this sweetener in packet form. The box lists no calories, but 1.5 grams of carb. Depending on how you count carbs, 1.2 of that is the sugar alcohol. The rest is the Maltodextrin and Dextrose they use as filler. Do with it what you want. I haven't taken sides on the sugar alcohol issues. I have used Erythritol with no problems, and the Xylitol in gums and oral care products hasn't affected John's blood sugars. In fact, this morning, his blood sugar was 87. Woohoo. Of course, he didn't have any coffee. Somehow the man doesn't like it. Go figure. The box has 50 packets for just $1.25. That seems pretty darn cheap for something I would otherwise need to order online.

My kitchen counter is filled with sweeteners. I like to mix them in some recipes. I use a lot of stevia, and some saccharin for the boy who can't have sucralose. For me, I think I burned out my sweet receptors years ago. I am just not that sensitive to the different sweeteners, and they taste pretty much the same to me. What is your favorite?

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