RSS

Tag Archives: Paleo

A Taste of Winter

Winter has finally arrived in South Texas! Overnight it went from about 70 degrees to 30 with wind and clouds and a light frost. I actually woke up in the middle of the night and ran out to the deck to cover up my few plants to make sure I didn’t let frost kill them. I have worked very hard gotten lucky and somehow I have kept them alive since July! I haven’t ventured outside yet today, but I am excited to put on some jeans, boots and a sweater because it just doesn’t feel right wearing sandals and shorts through the whole month of December.

In preparation for the cold weather I made two different Paleo soups yesterday. Really I made them because I had all the ingredients and it is a very convenient way to get lots of veggies. The first soup I made was a broccoli, kale and turnip soup. It is so easy and very tasty. Turnips had never crossed my radar before two weeks ago when I went to the Pearl Farmer’s Market and picked some up. I got about 5 pounds of turnips and greens for $2 – how awesome. I then had to do some reasearch as to how to cook and eat them – mashed and baked were the most popular ways they are eaten. They have an interesting flavor, which I cannot describe but I definitely like them and would recommend trying them.

To make the soup, you need to peel the turnips and cut into cubes. I used the brocoli stems to utilize the whole vegetable and just kind of peeled the hard edges away and then cubed them. Lastly, I washed the kale and pulled it off the stems and into silver dollar size pieces. I threw it all into a sauce pan and covered with water. Season with salt and pepper and boil for 20 minutes or until the turnips and brocoli are soft.

IMG_1267

After turning the heat off, I let the veggies cool a little. Drain most of the water and dump the veggies into the blender. I added about 1/2 and avocado to thicken the soup and some Tony’s seasoning for a little extra kick. Blend until smooth and you have a beautiful, green soup!

image

If you like green smoothies, you’ll love this soup. Next up was tomato soup. I have previously made a tomato basil soup, and loved it. I had most of the ingredients on hand and an open can of coconut milk that needed to be used up. I sauted 1/4 cup of diced onions and three cloves of minced garlic in coconut oil until they were soft. Next stop is the blender, where you dump one 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes, 3/4 to one can of coconut milk and the garlic and onions and blend until smooth.

IMG_1265

I had plans to put this back into the pan and add more seasonings, but it was so tasty after blending, I just let it be. Paleo Tomato soup is so awesome! It has a little sweet coconut flavor, but still very tomato-y and the onion and garlic were just perfect.

IMG_1270

What are you favorite cold weather foods?

Advertisements
 
1 Comment

Posted by on December 10, 2012 in Cooking, When in Texas...

 

Tags: , ,

Paleo Cauliflower Pizza Crust

I’m writing this as my crusts are cooking in the oven. I used a recipe from Fast Paleo – thank you! It’s three ingredients and not complicated. Although, I will say that I did not fully read the recipe because I thought I should flip my crusts after only 5 minutes of baking – WRONG. Wait 10-15 minutes, and then flip them.Pizza crust one got messed up but crust two flipped very nicely when I waited. I’ve been waiting to try this recipe for a while and am very excited to see how it turns out. My plan is to make a Mexican pizza with some slow cooked chicken breast, salsa, cilantro and onion. It says you can freeze the crusts for later, so I intend to do that for future use.

image

I really do love eating Paleo, now that I am used to it. For the most part I feel better and I know that I’m putting good things in my body. The only problem is that it takes so darn long to put together something to eat. Even if you have veggies chopped, and meat cooked, you still have to saute them, or cook your eggs or make sauces for flavorings…if you don’t want super boring meals! I’m trying to make some things that will last a few days, like Cucumber Noodles from The Clothes Make the Girl, various versions of coleslaw (bacon jam coleslaw anyone?? yes, it was good along with cilantro lime coleslaw), Potato-less Potato salad was also great, and some Red Pepper Dried Tomato meatballs (my own creation!) were wonderful. Here is my Mexican Pizza, not pretty but VERY tasty!

image

See paleo can be fun and tasty! Ben will eat meat-y things that I make, but he’s not really into veggies. Unless they come in the form of white potatoes (chips, fries, baked, hashbrowns, mashed, grilled, ect)! I just finished my pizza, and it was incredibly enjoyable! Even if you don’t eat paleo, this is a great alternative to traditional pizza with all the breading, grease and cheese! And the follow-up, these work great to put in the oven for future pizza crust use!

image

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 25, 2012 in Cooking

 

Tags: ,

Workouts 9/25 – 10/1

Oh dear, I forgot to write anything down until the last day of this workout week. Luckily I’m keeping track on my training schedule. This week was pretty exciting for me, I really wasn’t sure I could run 8 miles, nor did I think I was ready to run 5 days in a week, but my body was strong and carried me through. I also am trying hard to stick to a strict Paleo diet, so I am happy with how my energy is responding to that and being able to run.

Tuesday, September 25th – OFF

Wednesday, September 26th –
3 mile fartlek 3 mile run Plus this WOD (19:05)

image

10 Rounds for Time:
3 jumping pull-ups
10 hand release push-ups
15 V-ups
20 air squats

Thursday, September 27th –
5 miles in 49:43

Friday, September 28th –
3 miles
5 min warm up
2 rounds: 9 minutes: 1 minute jog/40 second run/20 second sprint, 1 minute walk
5 minute jog cool down

Saturday, September 29th – OFF

Sunday, September 30th –
5 mile round trip bike to church immediately followed by
3+ mile run in 36:00 minutes

Monday, October 1st –
8 mile run in 1:15:02

Total Miles: 22

 
 

Tags: , , , , ,

Eggplant F’armesean TX-ified

I bought an eggplant at the store to try something new. I’ve eaten them before, but I don’t buy them regularly. It sat in my fridge for several days while I searched the internet for the perfect recipe to use it in. Luckily, it didn’t take too long to find a great one by Melissa Joulwan. Oh, did I mention I wanted a Paleo recipe? Paleo, you ask, but you hated it before, why are you eating that way again? Well, long story made short, I’m trying it again and this time around it’s going a little better.

Back to this awesome recipe, which you can see the original here. Well, of course I needed to modify TX-ifiy it so I’ll list my ingredients below.

1 medium eggplant
3 large tomatoes
1/2 zucchini
olive oil
salt
1 lb ground beef (or any other kind of meat would be good)
1 jar of marinara sauce
2 small garlic cloves (crushed and minced)
1 jalapeno pepper (seeded and chopped)
1 egg

I will say that this is a time-consuming recipe, this is not 30-minute meal or even 60-minute meal worthy, but it is well worth the time! Start by slicing your eggplant, tomatoes and zucchini about 1/2 an inch thick and tossing them in some olive oil, so they are covered. Lay them on your baking sheets (I put parchment paper down first) and cook them at 375 for 20 minutes. While they are cooking start browning your ground beef and saute the garlic and jalapeno in the same pan so all the flavors meld together. Turn the oven up to 400 and let the veggies cook for another 10 minutes.

Awesome Roasted Veggies

Marinara sauce & ground beef

Let everything cool a bit and then begin assembly. You will need a medium casserole dish or large loaf pan or even a round pan. Whisk the egg and add it to the marinara sauce, and then combine with the ground beef. Start by placing a layer of eggplant, then layer of tomato and top with zucchini in the casserole dish. Pour about 1/3 of the sauce over the layers so they are covered.

Layering the Ingredients

Repeat layering with remaining veggies (I got two layers out of this) and top with remaining sauce. Now pop it back in the oven for 30 minutes on 350. After the 30 minutes, take it out of the oven and let it set for 40 minutes, if you aren’t completely famished AND dying to dig in!

Typical Casserole – not pretty but VERY tasty

This was an awesome dish! It was a little watery because of the tomatoes, so I think less of those and more other veggies would give it more structure. I ate almost 1/3 of the casserole the first night because it was SO delicious. I think it was partly due to the marinara sauce I used, but the roasted veggies had amazing flavor as well.

What new recipes have you tried lately?

 
1 Comment

Posted by on May 4, 2012 in Cooking

 

Tags: , , ,

Apple Stuffed Porkloin Chops

In my search for Paleo recipes for different meats, stuffed pork chops came up and sounded great. I found several recipes and kind of combined them all together, because of course I can’t follow a recipe exactly. Also, when I went to the grocery store, pork loin was on sale and much cheaper than pork chops. Lastly, I wanted to make these in the slow cooker to ensure they were very tender and juicy. I started by peeling and coring two granny smith apples and one large sweet onion.

I put 3/4 of the apples and onions in the food processor and let it chop them up in to nice little pieces to create filling for the chops. The remaining apple and onion were layered in the bottom of the slow cooker.

Next came the porkloin, which I was attempting to turn into pork chops. I grabbed the biggest, sharpest knife I have and began slicing 1″ thick chops. After I finished this, I started cutting the pocket for the apple/onion filling. I learned the best way to do this is to lay the chop flat on cutting board and to insert your knife (parallel to the cutting board) in the in the chop until it is about 3/4″ away from the opposite edge. Then press your free hand across the chop while rotating the knife to create the pocket.

The next step is to stuff the chops with your filling and close up the edge with a toothpick, so the filling won’t all fall out. I then placed all the chops fat side up in the crock pot. I places some remaining apple and onion slices in between each chop and seasoned the mixture with thyme, sage, oregano, salt and pepper.

I placed the crock pot on “Low” (which I think it’s really “High” but I can’t ever tell) for about three hours. When we returned from church, it smelled amazing and the chops were at 130 degrees. So I turned it to “High” (thinking it’s “low”) and they were done in about 30-40 minutes, meaning it was probably high all along.

The end result was ok. Highlight for me was the cooked apples, which I LOVED. The pork chop was relatively tender, but not falling apart and the spices didn’t make their way all the way through the meat. When I do this again, I think I will make a marinade to tenderize the meat and put spices in the stuffing mix to ensure they get all the way through the chop. Maybe I’ll cook them in the oven on 200 or something for longer so they get good and falling apart tender. All in all, this turned out just fine because it fed Ben and I for 3 days, which is longer than anything else I’ve cooked during out Paleo Challenge.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on January 21, 2012 in Cooking

 

Tags: , ,

Paleo Challenge Update

It has been just over a week since Ben and I started on our Paleo challenge. It has been much easier on me than on him mainly because I think my tastes have gravitated toward leafy greens and various veggies and lower sugar items, so picking veggies to eat with almost every meal is not too hard. I will say that I went through sugar withdrawals the first few days and I am craving chocolate a lot!

This challenge has caused me to try new recipes because a lot of what I normally cook has some sort of grain or dairy in it. Also, we have had to cook more because eating most types of fast food is completely out of the questions. I made beef stir fry lettuce wraps, which were surprisingly good. I made meatballs for the first time and think with a little fine tuning, they will be a standby recipe for life after paleo. Ben found out he likes sweet potatoes with Tony’s, so at least he will be able to eat a few more carbs. No-oats oatmeal has been my breakfast for the last two mornings, and it might replace regular oatmeal all together.

Aside from the general requirements of eating no grains, no dairy and no legumes, the hardest thing about the Paleo challenge is meal planning. Up until now, if I didn’t plan dinner, we can scrounge around the house or just run somewhere to grab a quick dinner. Now, I need to plan dinner so we can have lunch leftovers, unless we want to be eating eggs for 2 or three meals a day (they are the only quick Paleo food I have found so far). I did some homework tonight and found several recipes that should last a few days and will plan to make them this weekend and for the next week.

Are you trying a new eating plan? What are the challenges? What are you enjoying?

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 11, 2012 in Food Reviews

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Typically late New Year’s Resolutions

I have decided that since our wedding anniversary falls on New Year’s Day, I have at least one or two more days after that to declare and begin my new year resolutions. It only makes sense to fully focus on our anniversary and later focus on the resolutions. I really haven’t made any grand and sticking resolutions in the past, and this year will be no exception.

I am declaring 2012 the year of health and in that, I want to be at my best health physically, mentally, emotionally and most importantly, spiritually. I can honestly say that I have been lacking in the spiritual department. Yes, I still pray; I still read my bible (not regularly); we still attend church and we really enjoy going to our small group bible study. But really, it’s called a personal relationship for a reason – and I have definitely been neglecting my relationship with the Lord. I am so thankful He is ever-loving and ever-forgiving, because otherwise I would have been struck dead a LONG time ago!

On the other accounts, in 2012 I already have more races planned in the spring months than I have run in my whole running career! My goal is to keep my base miles around 6 to 7 and be consistent in weight training three times a week. Mainly, consistency is my goal because it seems that I’ll really focus on running and skip the weights for a few months, and the next few months I’m going to classes and lifting but not running. I’d like to see if I can keep a good balance throughout the next year. I can’t talk about physical health without mentioning diet (in terms of the food I eat, not which diet I’m on). Ben and I decided to go “Paleo” a.k.a. Caveman from January 3rd until Feb 10th, which is a little over 30 days. I really need to get back on a majority plant-based diet and this is a great way to do it. I’m so glad Ben is joining me because it means mutual encouragement, and commiserating.

Saying that 2012 is the year of health also means that I am hoping to be a healthy influence on others in my life. I would love to see my friends and family choose healthy lifestyles and I would love to see it begin in 2012. I have learned that healthy living is a lifestyle and you have to choose each day to make healthy decisions.

What is your theme for 2012? How will that carry through to the various areas of your life?

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 3, 2012 in Daily Gratitude, Faith

 

Tags: , , , ,