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Cheesy Broccoli Bites

Okay. These things are amazing.

They might not be chocolate chip cookies or milkshakes, but one big thing I’ve found is that if I fill my diet with really delicious food that I can look forward to eating, then I don’t crave the things I’m not supposed to eat as much. So, while this doesn’t directly satisfy those cravings, it indirectly satisfies them by filling you up with other yummy stuff!

Again, though, I can’t stress enough the importance of not letting yourself ever get hungry. Once you’re hungry, nothing really does it for you, but if you’re eating regularly, then something like this is really satisfying.

I based this recipe on one I found over at Food Renegade – one of my new favorite sites. The original post is here, but I added some things based on what I knew would be good to me. Namely, bacon and onions. Because, really bacon and onions can only make anything better.

For this post, I’m going to pretend I’m a real food blogger and post pictures of the process just like the Big Guys. But, I’m not a food photographer by any stretch of the imagination, so, you know…lower your expectations.

First, take a bunch of broccoli and onions and chop them up really fine.

 

Finer than that. I was really tired, and that onion was crazy strong and made me cry like I was watching Beaches for the first time. I had to finish up with my eyes closed, which really isn’t a good idea, and I don’t recommend it. So, basically don’t be like me. Chop them up really small.

Then dump them both in a bowl, along with the almond flour and spices.

Mix them all together, and then add the cheeses and mix them all in too. Somehow I don’t have a picture of that part. Oh well…I’m sure you can figure it out.

Next, dice the bacon in small pieces, and add it along with the eggs to the bowl…

…and mix it all together. At this point, it’s really just easiest to get your hands into the mix. Like meatloaf. Come on, don’t be squeamish…you’re going to be getting your hands messy in the next step anyway.

Take small handfulls of the mix and form them into small balls, then roll them in an almond flour/parmesan cheese mix. Keep them small, because if you get lazy and start making them larger, they’ll fall apart in the oven. And will stop being broccoli bites and start being broccoli lumps instead. Not that I know this from experience or anything. Not at all.

Arrange them on a greased cookie sheet. You don’t have to worry about how close they are because they don’t spread at all. Load it up. Stick it in the oven and when they come out they look like this:

And if you didn’t listen to my advice about not making them too big, you get a few that look like this:

But anyway….

While they’re baking, whip up some dipping sauce. Combine sour cream, mayo, dijon mustard, maple syrup, salt and pepper, and lemon juice in a bowl, and stir it up. I used this mustard because it has horseradish in it, which gives it a bit of a kick. And it was delish. (Let me also add that my husband doesn’t like any of the major ingredients in this sauce by themselves, but when you combine them together somehow they become awesome.)

If you want, you can stop right there and serve as is, and they’re great. But if you want to add a little extra crispiness, you can heat some olive oil in a very hot pan and cook them  for just half a minute on each side. They’ll burn easily, so don’t keep them there long! If you put them all in, and then immediately start flipping them over in the same order, and then immediately start taking them out in the same order, that should do it.

Aren’t they cute?

Stick them on a plate and serve along with the sauce, and you have the perfect snack or appetizer. Or, if you live in my house…dinner.

Seriously. This is what we had for dinner last night. Along with stewed apples. Everyone thought they were amazing, even the kids. So, make them! What are you waiting for?

Broccoli Bites

  • 1 lb broccoli, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 3 eggs
  • 6 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 cup almond flour (other flours can be used instead, if desired.)
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup almond flour (for rolling)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (for rolling)

(Note: I find I can eat bacon in moderation without symptoms, but it is on the list of things to avoid. If you find you can’t tolerate bacon, you can just leave it out of the recipe!)

Preheat oven to 350. Put the chopped broccoli and onion, almond flour, and spices in a bowl and mix. Add the cheeses and mix then add the bacon and eggs and mix again, using your hands to really get everything together. In a small bowl combine the extra almond flour and parmesan cheese, and add a couple shakes of salt and pepper if you want. Form the broccoli mixture into small balls, and roll in the coating mix. Place the balls on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes. If desired, when they come out of the oven, heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan on high heat, and when the pan is very hot sautee the balls for about 30 seconds on each side. Remove to a platter and serve along with Maple-Dijon Dipping Sauce.

(For a simplified version, you can skip rolling the balls in the flour at the end, and skip pan frying them when they come out of the oven. They won’t be as crispy on the outside but will still taste good!)

Maple-Dijon Dipping Sauce

  • 6 tbsp sour cream
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp real maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • salt to taste
Mix it all up together and eat!!

 

 

 

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