Monday, July 7, 2014

New Smoothie

So I know there is a lot of controversy surrounding "drinking" your food in the Paleo world. I know that it is frowned upon. I also know that for the most part it is frowned upon because people usually fill their smoothies with tons of fruit and milk. Well, I do make smoothies for breakfast. Mainly because it is easy for me and because it is a great vehicle for some nutrients and minerals that I wouldn't normally get throughout the day. So in case you are wondering here is my new morning smoothie and the reasons why I use those particular ingredients.

1/2 frozen banana - sweetness, potassium, good for digestion
1 cup of coconut milk
1T of cacao nibs, unsweetened - flavanoids, heart healthy
1 T of chia seeds - good for digestion, protien, omega 3
1 T of coconut oil - healthy fat, aides in satiety, too many others to it
1 T of Great Lakes gelatin powder - protein, bone health
5 dashes of turmeric - oh, where to begin..anti-inflammatory for my purposes
5 dashes of cinnamon - blood sugar regulator and it tastes good!
2 brazil nuts - selenium, thyroid health

That's it folks. I do love this smoothie and ONE of my daughters do too. She thinks it's like chocolate chip milk! haha!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Crisis Averted

So a few weeks ago....I avoided a crisis. A major, major crisis. Here is what went down.

I was testing a feux cheesecake recipe. It had lots and lots of raw cashew in it. I spent the night soaking the nuts, because as we all know...the phytate can be broken down by soaking and dehydrating. Then I tried out the recipe that I was testing. I was a COMPLETE bust! I have no idea what I did. It went all brick like and separated on me. I was SO mad and upset and depressed. I mean, do you know how expensive that many cashews are? Geez! Anyway, my first response.....what kind of crappy food can I get my hands on to devour? Normally, it would do me no good to go hunting in the pantry cause there isn't anything there but some canned goods, almond and coconut flour and nuts. But I happened to have some avocado oil chips in there for my girls lunches. I eyeballed those suckers, picked them up and was ready to let all my emotions out on those delicious crispy, salty potato slices and then check the freezer for some coconut milk ice cream! But......I thought to myself..."what in the world do you think you are doing? Is this gonna fix the recipe? Is this mixture just gonna come together for you after you make yourself sick eating a whole bag of chips? What will this accomplish?" And the answer is nothing. Sure, I will feel a little bit better while I'm munching..... but after the fact I will STILL have a screwed up cashew mixture and the only thing different is that, in addition to that,  I will feel like crap. That's not helpful. So I put the chips back down and went to clean up the mess in the kitchen.

So people, I still struggle with emotional eating and I do not always avoid the crisis. Sometimes I give in. That's life. That's being human. But learning to realize it and learning to recognize my tendencies and why and when I'm reaching for a certain food item is important. And I'm learning more and more about myself throughout this whole process.

Sooooooo on that note.. here is some stuff we HAVE been munching on around here.
This week it is just me and my girls since my husband is away in London for a mission trip. I figured it would be a good time to post some stuff we have been eating....ya know, just in case you want to try it out too. I am in the process right now of developing a small free ebook for people who subscribe to my email newsletters. I will let you know as soon as that is done.

Fake Out Rice Bowl

1 small Japanese sweet potato, shredded, and liquid squeezed out in a clean kitchen towel
1/2 pound of hot italian sausage out of the casing
1small bunch of kale, shredded
12 cremini mushrooms, slices
1 small onion, chopped
1 tsp of garlic powder
1 tsp of onion powder
1 Tablespoon of coconut aminos
Salt and pepper to taste

-In a skillet over medium/medium high heat brown the sausage

-Remove the sausage leaving the fat, add olive oil if you need more fat for cooking. Take some out if you have too much

-Add in mushrooms and onion, cook until they have a bit of color

-Add in the kale and cook until wilted

-Add in the sweet potato, garlic powder, onion, powder, S&P and coconut aminos, and cook till shredded potatoes is cooked through. About 5-7 minutes.

-Add back in the sausage to warm through and serve.

Rosemary Chicken and Roasted Veggies

1 pound of boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 sweet potato, sliced into wedges
1 bulb of fennel, sliced into wedges
3 shallots, quartered
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, minced about 2 Tablespoons
1 lemon, you are gonna use the zest and the juice
about 1/3 cup of chicken broth
olive oil
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 425

-On a baking sheet, toss your veggies with olive oil to coat and salt and pepper to taste. Spread out in a single layer and place in the oven for 30-35 minutes. Flipping veggies over halfway through.

-Mix up the the zest of the lemon, the minced garlic and the minced rosemary together

-Season the chicken liberally with S and P and then coat the chicken with the zest, garlic, rosemary mixture and a little splash of olive oil and let it sit for about 20 minutes.

-In an oven safe sauté pan heated over medium heat place in your chicken. You want to get them nice and browned on both sides, careful to watch so you don't burn the garlic.

-Once both sides are browned add in the juice of the lemon and the broth, scrape up the bits from the pan

-Throw it in the oven for about 8-12 minutes or until cooked through and internal temp reached 165

-Serve with roasted veggies and pour sauce from the pan over the chicken, taste for added salt and pepper.

Avocado Tuna Salad

1 can of wild caught tuna
1/2 of an avocado
1 Tablespoon of pickled jalapeno's, chopped
1/2 of a shallot, minced
juice of 1/2 lime

Mix all the above ingredients.
I served mine on some iceburg lettuce and grape tomatoes tossed with some evoo, S&P and spritz of lime juice. Some minced cilantro would probably be good with this too if you swing that way.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Meatball Soup (I'm not a big soup fan, but this IS good!)

As you have read in the title, I am not the biggest soup fan. After eating soup, I usually am looking around for my actual meal! Let me tell ya, I was stuffed after this soup and a side salad.  I saw a lot of people talking about italian wedding soup so I wanted to see if I could come up with a primal version. There is cheese in this recipe, I assume you could leave it out. There is only a couple of Tablespoons of raw grass fed parm in the meatball. Also I would assume you could use any meat you want, but I did not test that. I have been hearing chefs talk a lot lately about mixing meats for meatballs....ya know beef, pork, and veal for the best meatball??? So I decided to mix the meat in this recipe as well. The end result turned out really good. I invited company over to try it along with me. I NEVER do that, but I thought with all these ingredients together, it HAD to me good. My company (my MIL) is not a kale fan (GASP, I know!!) but she really loved this soup. We also chatted about how good it feels to eat and eat good without any guilt. Try this recipe, I am sure you will like it.

For the meatballs
a little over 1/2 pound ground chicken (I asked my butcher to grind up some chicken thighs for me, It was a little over 1/2 pound that he gave me but I'm sorry I didn't look at the exact weight. I just threw it in)
1/2 pound of chicken sausage ( I show you what I used below)
1 T of minced garlic
2 T of raw, grass fed parmesan
1 egg
1/4 cup of minced parsley
1/3 cup of steamed, riced or pureed cauliflower
1 teaspoon of pepper

This is the chicken sausage I used for the meat mixture. You could use any chicken sausage as long as the ingredients are clean. These ingredients are organic chicken and spices. Period. Works for me. 

SO the first thing I did was to take out a couple of these links and process them just like this...

Then, I just dumped this mixture in a bowl and added all of the other meatball ingredients.

After mixing this all together, I formed tiny meatballs and placed them on a parchment lined baking sheet. I used about a teaspoon size scooper. We want some small meatballs for this recipe.

The mixture is pretty wet so after making the meatballs, I covered with plastic wrap and stuck them in the fridge for about a half an hour. Then bake them at 350 for 30 minutes. 

Next for the soup

1/2 large onion, small dice
4 small or 2 large carrots, small dice
1 celery stalk, small dice
2 Tablespoons of your favorite fat, I used 1 T of olive oil and 1 T of grass fed butter
8 cups of homemade chicken stock or low sodium high quality box stock 
4 cups of shredded kale, sliced in thin ribbons
2 Tablespoons of minced fresh dill
It will need salt and pepper for sure, so add to taste

SO in a heavy pot add your fat over medium heat and then add your onion, carrot, and celery. 

Let that cook for a while until your veggies are nice and soft. About 5-7 minutes. 

Then add your stock.

Turn up the heat and let the soup come up to a boil. 

Once boiling add your kale. 

Turn heat back down to medium and let the kale wilt down. About 5 minutes.

Then add in your cooked meatballs and let them re-heat if need be. Don't be to aggressive stirring the soup at this time. We want to keep the meatballs in tact. Let this cook for about another 5 minutes. Don't you want to just start eating this right now? But wait....hold out for more flavor, we aren't done yet!

Remove the soup from the heat and stir in the dill and taste for seasonings. I'm telling you, it will mos def need some salt. Add it. 

Stir in the dill gently and let is sit for about 5 minutes, just for that dill flavor to get all up in there!! YUM.

There ya have it, it's ready to go. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Crab Cakes and Yummy Chipotle Sauce!!!!

I adore crab cakes. It used to be what I always ordered when we went out to a seafood restaurant. But now I don't really like going out to eat and if I did I couldn't order the crab cakes any longer. :( Time to make my own and here's how I did it.

Crab cakes
12 oz of wild caught crab meat
1/4 cup PLUS 2 T of tapioca flour
2 T of coconut flour
1-2 eggs (will need to see how dry your mix is to determine how many eggs you need)
1 tsp of old bay seasoning
1 tsp of paprika
1 tsp of baking powder
4 scallions (sliced thinly whites and greens)
2 T of coconut oil

-In a mixing bowl combine crab meat, flours, 1 egg, seasonings and scallions
-IF your mixture is too dry and won't hold shape at all then add your other egg.
-Heat up the oil in a skillet over medium heat
-Make cakes out of your mixture. I used a 1/4 measuring cup and pressed the mixture down into that and flipped it out into my hand. It made about 8 cakes.
-Once your oil is hot and shimmering, add the cakes to the pan
-Cook for about 2-3 minutes per side until they are nice and golden brown

Chipotle Sauce
3/4 cup of home made mayo
1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (depending on how much heat you want. I used one for mine)
1 scallion
1 tsp of dijon mustard

-In a blender combine the above ingredients and serve along side or on top of crab cakes

I served myself these golden brown nuggets on top of some broccoli slaw and commenced to devour! I hope you enjoy these. Please share with others! :) 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cottage Pie....YUMmers!

This week I had some grass fed beef fresh from the farmer defrosted in the bottom of the fridge. So I went hunting through the rest of the fridge to figure out something for dinner. The cauliflower caught my eye and I immediately thought Cottage Pie. (which is like Shepherds Pie except in Shepherds Pie you use ground lamb as the meat, which is still yummy!) Anyway here is what came about...

Cottage Pie
1 batch of mashed cauliflower (make sure it is well seasoned for this recipe)
1 T of fat of choice
2 cloves of garlic
1 tsp of red pepper flakes
2 cups of mushrooms, sliced
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
1 lb of grass fed beef
2 T of tapioca starch
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp of coconut aminos
1 tsp of dried oregano
2 tsp of tomato paste
1 tsp of fresh rosemary, chopped
1 cup of chicken stock

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

-In a dutch oven heat up your fat of choice, I used lard, over medium heat

-add in garlic and pepper flakes and stir until you can start to smell the garlic

-add in mushrooms and let them cook down

-add in carrots and onions and cook until they become soft

-add in beef and cook until browned

-sprinkle tapioca starch over contents and stir it in

-add in salt, dried oregano, and coconut aminos

-make a little hot spot in the center of your pot and add the tomato paste, stirring and cooking it in the center until you can start to smell it. Then stir it in with the rest of the contents.

-Add in stock and rosemary, stir together and cook until nice and thick. This should happen fairly quickly due to the tapioca starch.

-Pour into a casserole dish and top with your batch of cauliflower mash. If you are primal you can top with a little grated raw grass fed cheese

-bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes

-let stand for 15 minutes before serving

Here is what it looks like....I mean seriously....that filling.....just set me down with a big spoon!!

Cauliflower Mash

For someone who thought they didn't like cauliflower....I sure do love this stuff. I could live without mashed potatoes FOREVER because of this stuff. Here is what you do....

-Cut the florets of a head of cauliflower
-Steam it until it gets tender
-Transfer the veg to a blender or I use my ninja (hi-YA!)
-Add a couple of T of raw grass fed butter (if you can tolerate it) and salt and pepper to taste

It comes out looking like this..

Now... some people like it to be more of a puree, so if that is you, just add some chicken stock in the ninja until you reach your desired consistency. Me? I like it just. like. this!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Apple Cinnamon Cake

Today is a special birthday party day for my youngest daughter! I was going to wait till after the contest to share this recipe but the bday girl requested this bread for breakfast and it is soooo yummy. It has one controversial ingredient in it though...coconut sugar. Coconut sugar is low on the glycemic index but it could be a gut irritant for some people. As with ANY treat I don't recommend that they are eaten on a daily basis. We thrive very well on NO sugar. Treats should be reserved for just that....occasional treats. Ok, I'm done ranting... let's get to the recipe!

Apple Cinnamon Cake

3 T of coconut sugar
1 T of cinnamon

1 apple, diced

1/2 cup of coconut sugar
6 T of softened grass fed butter
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp of vanilla
1 cup of almond flour
1/4 cup of coconut flour
1/4 cup of tapioca starch
1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
1 pinch of salt
1/4 cup of almond milk
1/4 cup of apple cider

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-prepare a greased loaf pan

-in a small bowl mix the 3 T of coconut sugar and cinnamon, set to the side
-in a large bowl mix the remaining sugar and butter
-add the eggs and vanilla and
-wisk until incorporated
-add in the dry ingredients and mix, should be fairly thick
-add in almond milk and cider, mix until all is incorporated

-dump half of the batter into the greased loaf pan
-sprinkle the top with half of the cinnamon sugar mixture and 1/2 of the diced apple
-repeat with the rest of the batter and the rest of the cinnamon/sugar and apple
-press apple into batter
-bake at 350 for about an hour

Now don't PLEASE remember about our contest!! See last post for details! I will be choosing a winner of Melissa Joulwan's new cookbook Well Fed 2 tomorrow!! IF YOU SHARE THIS POST AND LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS YOU WILL RECEIVE AND EXTRA ENTRY TO THE CONTEST!! So share away!!