After Frank and I changed the way we eat, I tried to dream up some new meals that were low in carbohydrates, that were filling and also taste good. It's one thing to eat low carb, it's another thing to eat low carb stuff that tastes like cardboard. So this is a meal I dreamed up that actually tastes very good. The best thing about it is the versatility of ingredients allows you to make the 'same thing' frequently by changing what you put into it. I didn't know what to call this dish, so I made that up, too.
I discovered along the way that you can make a sourdough starter with cornmeal. I'm not sure where I found the information about it, I can't find the link if I saved it. I took some of my whole wheat sourdough starter and gradually introduced cornmeal, hoping it wouldn't kill it. After a couple of weeks, I was feeding it straight cornmeal. The 'sour' smell is stronger with cornmeal than flour, but it works just fine. The fermentation process of a sourdough starter predigests the carbohydrates in the flour or cornmeal it is fed. This lowers the carbohydrate count in the final product substantially. One half cup of sourdough starter contains roughly 4 to 5 carbohydrates. I have made the Meat Pie with both types of starter, whole wheat and cornmeal, and they both taste fine. This is another way to make the same meal different.
I start off with some butter in a cast iron skillet. For a standard skillet I use about four to five tablespoons. This skillet is a little smaller and four tablespoons would have been plenty. Put the skillet in the oven for about five minutes while it is preheating to 450* and you are preparing your ingredients. Brown or cook your meat of choice. I am using ground chuck this time. I have also made this with diced ham and sausage. Use whatever sounds good.
Make sure the butter coats the bottom of your pan, then pour in 1/2 cup of sourdough starter. I'm using the cornmeal version this time. Spread out your starter to cover the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle the meat onto the starter, as much or as little as you desire.
Add any vegetables and toppings you like. This time I am using fresh sliced squash. I have used canned, drained squash as well and it tastes very good. Sliced mushrooms and frozen sweet peppers from last summer go great in this combination.
We also used grated homemade cheddar cheese. This is the second wheel we have opened this summer. It was waxed April 14th. It is not as dry as the first wheel, and it has a very smooth texture and not as many holes. Very good.
That's all I'm adding this time. You can see how versatile this recipe is. I can hear you thinking, "Hmmm.....I can add this and this......", and you can. It can be a pizza flavored dish, or have a Mexican flare with salsa and jalapeno peppers. The versatility is only limited by the imagination you put into it.
Depending on the ingredients you add, bake at 450* for about 20 to 30 minutes. If you add moist ingredients like salsa or ranch dressing, increase your baking time to allow for the extra moisture. Since I used fresh squash instead of canned, I had to allow 30 minutes before it softened up and was ready to serve.
The sourdough starter will come out as a crunchy crust, not as thick as pizza crust, and crunchier. Since I had more butter than I really needed this time, the crust was more of a chewy crunchy. But if that's what you prefer, you can adjust accordingly.
This meal is really good, low carb and good for you. Of course the ingredients you choose to include will affect your carb count. If you don't need to watch your carb intake, you can still use this recipe to make a variety of meals, tailored to your family's tastes and preferences. Use your imagination, and you will be surprised what you can come up with. Frank and I have each lost almost 40 pounds in less than seven months. There isn't much you can't do if you set your mind to it. Thankfully for us, the time arrived when we decided to change our lives for the better. We're very glad we did.
Until next time - Fern