Thursday, April 24, 2014

Meat Crust Quiche

This past weekend I had two of my lovely friends over for an awesome paleo brunch.  These two also follow the paleo lifestyle so it was fun to share methodologies and recipes with them.  Post brunch I had planned to garden all afternoon but of course Portland's "70 and sunny" afternoon turned into a manic rain and wind storm, might I add I'm still waiting for the sunny day to get some seeds planted.  In other news I'm headed to another book club meeting tonight, we were all reading The Monuments Men which turned out to be a super boring book so we switched mid-month.  I'm happy that I am part of such a wonderful group of women who accept change and encourage it, I have heard otherwise about other book clubs...  I found this recipe in a search for good paleo brunches, all of which seem to involve sweet potatoes and I think that gets a little old but this sweet potato plays a minor role in the dish.

Serves 4

The Ingredients
1 pound pork sausage
1 small sweet potato, diced
½ yellow onion, diced
2 cups fresh spinach
4 eggs, whisked
2 garlic clove, minced
1teaspoon garlic powder
⅛ teaspoon ground paprika
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons bacon fat

The Process
1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2.  Now  make your sausage into a crust. In a pie plate and begin to press your sausage into the pan until it is even all around and pressed up to the rim of the plate.

3.  Place the pan on a baking sheet (in case of any spills) and in the oven, and bake for 18-20 minutes until meat presses back when you poke it. It doesn’t need to be completely cooked through, but pretty close.

4.  While your crust is baking, place 2 tablespoons of bacon fat into a saucepan over medium heat. Then add the minced garlic.

5.  Add in the chopped onions and sweet potatoes to the pan and mix. Once the onions begin to become translucent, sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper on top and cover to help steam the potatoes and cook quicker.

6.  Once potatoes are tender after about 4-5 minutes, toss in the spinach and cover once more to help the spinach wilt.

7.  After a minute or two, once the spinach is wilted, remove your mixture from the pan and place in a bowl to let cool.

8.  When mixture is cooled, add in the eggs, garlic powder, ground paprika and a bit more salt. Mix well.

9.  After the crust is done baking, remove the excess oil that may be left behind, then pour your egg mixture on top of the meat crust. It’s just fine if some leaks over into the pan because the meat will shrink just a bit.

10.  Place the pan back into the oven and bake for 23-25 minutes. Once the middle pushes back when you poke it, it’s good to go.

11.  Let cool, cut and serve.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Paleo Beef Stroganoff

It is full fledged Spring time in Portland but some days are definitely still cold and rainy, what better way to warm up than with a hardy meal such as Beef Stroganoff.  I have another non-paleo version of this dish that is delicious, if you prefer creamy Beef Stroganoff you can find the recipe here.  I will admit this recipe isn't fully paleo because I served it over gluten free noodles which were corn and quinoa based.  I will say that I often modify my paleo diet to include corn because it doesn't affect my system like the other items such as gluten and dairy...not to mention arrowroot powder is not cheap and it is often a replacement for corn starch.  I adapted this recipe from here.  Hopefully Portland will lay off the rain and give us some sunshine this weekend because it is full of fun events like attending the Blazers Friday playoff game and a couple BBQ'S and birthday celebrations.  Cheers to all the April babies, I know a lot of them!

Serves 2

The Ingredients
1 lb beef sirloin, thinly sliced into strips
1 sweet onion, chopped
1/2 cup crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp thyme, chopped
1 tsp rosemary, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp arrowroot powder (I used corn starch)
1 cup beef stock
1/2 cup coconut milk, full fat
Sea salt and ground pepper to taste
2 Tbsp olive oil

The Process
1.  In a skillet on medium-low heat, add 1 Tbsp olive oil.

2.  Add the mushrooms and onions, and sauté until slightly softened and browned around the edges. Remove to a plate.

3.  Add another Tbsp of olive oil and brown the beef. Return onions and mushrooms to pan. Add tomato paste, thyme, rosemary, and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes.

4.  Sprinkle arrowroot powder (or corn starch)over meat and add the beef stock. Stir and let simmer for 5 minutes until sauce thickens.

5.  In the meantime cook gluten free noodle according to package.

6.  Remove beef mixture from heat and stir in coconut milk then serve over noodles.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Paleo Loco Moco

This is a dish I made a couple of months ago when I was just starting the paleo diet and I was looking for yet another way to use eggs.  I haven't ever had the original version of loco moco but I do hope to have it someday when I allow myself to cheat (on paleo) and eat rice...until that day this version will have to do.  I adapted this recipe and used a bed of green beans instead of cauliflower.  In other news I have to take a break from gardening because my knees and hands are so sore from weeding, good thing the rain has returned for a couple days.  Hope you enjoy this ever so tasty comfort meal:)

Serves 4

The Ingredients
1 pound lean ground beef
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
14.5 oz beef broth
Tamari, to taste
2 tbsp coconut oil
2 tbsp almond flour
4 eggs
1/4 cup green onions, chopped
1 bag of frozen green beans, steamed

The Process
1.  Mix beef, onion, garlic, and salt and pepper together in a bowl. Form hamburger balls and flatten them out to the desired thickness. The size of the ball will determine the size of the patty. Fry patties in a pan on the stove top, cook until you reach desired done-ness. Juices from the patties will come to the top, which you'll want to see. Place the patties on a plate and leave them on the side.

2.  Use the same pan and juices from the burgers and add the broth to it. Bring broth to a boil. Add your tamari to taste. Reduce heat and let it sit for 3 to 5 minutes.

3.  Create a roux to thicken the broth using equal parts flour and coconut oil.
Melt coconut oil in a small pan and add the flour. Continue to stir the flour and oil mixture for a few minutes over low heat. After 3 minutes remove from heat and let cool.

4.  After the roux has cooled, add a tablespoon of your broth to the roux mixture and stir until incorporated. Continue to add small amounts of broth until your roux has the viscosity of milk and has a smooth texture.

5.  Bring your broth back to a simmer, slowly stir the roux into the broth, stirring the whole time. As the broth begins to thicken, turn off the heat.

6.  Cook the eggs to your liking. I cooked them over easy.

7.  Place the hamburger patty on top of the steamed green beans, then top with egg, drizzle gravy on top, and serve with green onions as garnish.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Paleo Broccoli Salad

I find myself always oven roasting broccoli, which is a fabulous and delicious way to eat it but I often need a diverse array of taste sensations in my life to keep my belly and mind happy.  On a mission to transform my broccoli into something new I came across this recipe that I loosely followed.  One of my other favorite broccoli recipes is broccoli cheddar soup, oh how I miss it being paleo and all.  I'm very excited to get my garden going this year, last Friday I stocked up on my garden supplies.  My mother and I went on a mother/daughter date to my local nursery City Farm.  This place rocked my socks!  They had so many varieties of tomatoes I couldn't even count them all, if you get a chance check it out.  This year I got two different types of kale, beets, lettuce, zucchini, swiss chard among other tasty veggies.  Today I weeded most of the garden bed and am getting ready to lay down some fresh soil then I will be ready to plant, I love Spring!

Serves 5

The Ingredients
1 large head broccoli, chopped (peel and chop stems too)
1/8 cup sweet onion, finely chopped
4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
3-4 Tbsp raw cashews, chopped
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup apple, chopped
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2-3 tsp full-fat coconut milk
1/4 tsp honey
1/8 tsp mustard powder
Salt and pepper to taste

The Process
1.  In a large bowl, mix together the broccoli, onion, bacon, apple and cashews.

2.  In a separate small bowl, whisk together the apple cider vinegar, olive oil, coconut milk, honey, mustard powder, sea salt and pepper.

3.  Pour dressing over mixture and stir well. Refrigerate at least 6-8 hours or overnight. Pull out of the fridge about 10 minutes before serving, to allow dressing to soften (it firms up in the fridge since it’s an olive oil based dressing).

Nutritional facts per serving:
Calories: 164
Carbs: 12g
Fat: 11g
Fiber: 3.6g
Protein: 7g
Sodium: 255mg
Sugar: 4g

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Paleo Fried Chicken

The Paleo diet definitely has its perks, fried chicken being one of them.  The magic ingredient in this recipe is almond flour, while it is expensive it is so much better than regular old white flour.  It adds a rich and filling flavor to any recipe and is the perfect ingredient to bread anything, including chicken nuggets.  In other news Spring has finally come to Portland we had almost two full weeks of sunshine and now we are onto the manic rain showers.  The other weekend it was even sunny enough for us to go enjoy our first Portland Pilots baseball game which was ridiculously fun, can't wait for soccer to start up!  In addition to the Spring time activities we have begun prepping our garden, this is our first Spring at this home so hopefully the soil gives our veggies lots of good nutrients.  Onto the recipe, created by yours truly.

Serves 2

6 chicken legs
1 cup pickle juice
1 cup almond flour
2 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 pepper
1 egg, whisked
Spray Oil
Hot Sauce (optional)

The Process
1.  Marinate chicken legs in pickle juice for at least three hours and pat dry when done marinating.  Then preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2.  Whisk egg in bowl and set aside.  Next in medium bowl mix together almond flour, Old Bay, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.

3.  Individually dip chicken legs in egg and then almond flour mixture.  Make sure each leg is fully breaded.  Then place on oiled baking sheet.  Next take spray oil and lightly coat each leg.

4. Put chicken in oven and bake for 30 minutes.  Then flip chicken and bake for about 15-20 more minutes or until cooked through.

5.  Serve with hot sauce!

Paleo BBQ Sauce

I came across this recipe after much research and attention to specific ingredient combinations.  When I took the store bought BBQ sauce out of our fridge to look at the ingredients I was very surprised at how much sugar it contained, along with a massive amount of corn syrup.  I had figured it was kind of like ketchup but was still stunned.  This recipe blew me away, it is so flavorful and still sweet.  My favorite ingredient is the apple cider vinegar because not only am I obsessed with it I actually love the taste of it (I know a lot of people that don't).  I have made this sauce a couple times now, once for chicken and in the case for fabulous pork ribs.  Enjoy!

Makes 1 1/2 cups

16 oz tomato sauce
1 cup water
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
5 Tbsp. honey
1/2 Tbsp. ground black pepper
1/2 Tbsp. onion powder
1/2 Tbsp. ground mustard
1 tsp. paprika
1 Tbsp. lemon juice

The Process
1. Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium high heat and stir to combine. Taste and adjust any seasonings to your liking. Bring to a boil.

2. Reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 1 hour.

3. Pour that stuff on some meat and eat up!