Sunday, July 15, 2012

If you want to succeed...'ve got to be prepared!

I've seen a lot of really cute Menu boards on pinterest lately.  In fact, my sister has one that she made.  Here is the problem....I'm NOT a crafty person!  There is just too much pressure to get it right.  And let's be honest...I'm really impatient.  I like the idea of being crafty...I'm just not.

I have been wanting to create a menu board.  I wanted it to be a really cute, crafty one.  But I got impatient and just bought a little magnetic dry erase board from Fred Meyer.  We're also trying to be really diligent about saving money and paying off my car.  So I went the cheap route. I got the board for like $4.  I had a magnetic strip at home that I cut up into smaller pieces.  I had a ton of white note cards that I cut up.  And I had a really cute recipe box that my crafty cousin-in-law had made me a while back.

So after I cut up the note cards I went through all our recipes and wrote them down on the cards.  They are now filed in the recipe box.  Each week I can put the previous weeks recipes back in the box and go through and pick which recipes I want to make and pin them to the board.  Which brings me to my point.

If you want to be successful in eating Paleo...or any healthy've go to be prepared.  You have got to make sure you have plenty of healthy options on hand and ready to go. Kyle and I make a menu at the beginning of the week...make a grocery list and then go shopping once for the entire week.  We were really bad before about figuring out each night what we were going to have for dinner.  In the past, by the time we got around to thinking about dinner we were already hungry and wanted something quick.  A lot of time that resulted in picking something up.  The other problem is we would end up going to the store night after night and getting ingredients that we wouldn't totally use and then they would go to waste.  By making the weekly menu we can make sure that produce gets eaten throughout the week.  Making the menu helps us to save money each week. :)

So...the menu isn't super cute...but it is functional. Hopefully one day in the future I can take the time to make it cute! :)  The next step I want to do is organize all my recipes in a big notebook and number them.  Then I can number the back of the "menu item cards" and will be able to find the recipes easily.

I guess I'll just add that to my list of projects! :)

I'm also working on some other things to help keep our home a little more clean and organized as we are both working lots of hours.  The cool thing is now I have the energy to do it! :)  It seems to be working so far...but it is still pretty early in the we'll save the sharing for a later date.

PB&J Ice cream: Paleo Butter and Jelly ice cream

 PB&J Ice cream 
Paleo Butter and Jelly ice cream

This is the easiest little dessert.  I'll be honest...sometimes when Kyle is working...and no one is watching...I'll just have this for dinner or lunch.  Okay...the secret is out.  All you need is some frozen bananas...some almond butter...and some strawberries.

I always have frozen bananas in my freezer now.  Take them out of the peel...cut them up into smaller chunks and freeze.  I will usually freeze on a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet. (That way they don't stick all together.) Once they are frozen you can put them in a freezer bag and save them for later.

Here is all you do...take out your food processor.  (Have I told you lately how much i LOVE my food processor?!)  Best purchase ever!  If you don't have should get one!

Then you put in your bananas.  I just put in as much as I think I am going to eat.  Next you put in a couple spoonfuls of Almond butter.  Process until they get smooth.  It will eventually turn into the consistency of soft serve ice cream...I just takes a while! 

Top with Strawberries...YUM!!! I got my strawberries from "the secret garden."  Well...that is what I like to call Kyle's little garden on the side of the house. The story goes...unbeknown to me...Kyle had built a garden on the side of the house that I never go on (there are no windows on that side of the house).  One day we were coming home from services, the garage door opens and I see vegetable plant sitting in the garage.  I ask, "What is that for?"  Kyle says, "Nothing."  The tone in his voice and look on his face told me something was definitely up.  Kyle walks me to the side of our house and I say, "We have a garden?!" has been referred to as "the secret garden" ever since.  He says he wanted to surprise me with produce from our garden one day.

Back to the ice cream...It really tastes like ice cream!

There are so many variations you can do with this.  Sometimes I just do banana, no almond butter, and then I top with some slivered almonds and a little Chocolate (no sugar/no dairy).  YUM!!!

This would be another really easy, healthy treat for some kiddos!

I bet you want a bite...don't you?!

No Peanut Thai Peanut Sauce

A few of my friends have been raving about a Thai Peanut sauce recipe this past week or so...I started could I make this Paleo.  I do LOVE Thai food...and I do LOVE Thai Peanut sauce. But Peanut and Sugar aren't really going to work with Paleo. Today we were having the Fried "Rice" Cauliflower I posted awhile back and I thought if I could get it to could be pretty yummy together.

The taste was good...I think I just need to thin it out some more and make sure I use a smoother almond butter.

Almond butter
Coconut milk
Sesame oil
A little honey
Curry Powder
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder
Cayenne powder
A little black tea (steeped 3 bags of black tea and added a few tablespoons)
Add all together and simmer on oven.

I kind of loved it on the Fried Rice.  I'm looking forward to trying it on a salad or maybe some Thai lettuce wraps this next week.

Tweaks for next time...make sure to have a Thai chili, and smooth almond butter on hand.  I don't think I need to add the sesame oil next time.  And...I need to add more coconut milk/black tea to thin it out a bit more.

I'll keep working on it until I get it right!

Salmon Caesar Salad and Lemon Treats

Today we feature the Lemon. :)  There was lemon on the fish, the dressing and in the "dessert."  I just love lemon!

The weather has been A-MA-ZING in the Pacific Northwest these past few days.  We've been doing a lot of grilling.  Tonight Salmon was on the menu.  I wanted to try something a little different than our typical I thought Caesar!  Now, Caesar is a little difficult when you can't have garlic...that is kind of the key ingredient.  But here is what I did and it turned out pretty yummy.

Caesar Dressing:
1 coddled egg
We didn't have anchovies so we used sardines...haha (2 1/2 of them)
Garlic powder ( garlic!)
A little onion powder
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
Put in food processor
Drizzle in Olive oil slowly until consistency you want.

Kyle seasoned the Salmon and added some lemon.  He cooked it perfectly on the grill.

I wanted a little something sweet after dinner so I found what we had in the cupboards.  I wasn't sure if it was going to turn out...but it was pretty tasty.  There was a recipe I saw on pinterest that I would really like to try that is very similar.  I'll have to actually measure the ingredients and let you know how it turns out.

I put the last of the almond flour, the last of the shredded unsweetened coconut...a little coconut flour...juice of half a lemon...a squeeze of honey (I don't usually use honey), some vanilla and a little coconut oil.  I mixed it all together and then put it in the oven at 200 for awhile until they were warm.

I tried drizzling some unsweetened chocolate on a few of them.  It worked for a little sweets fix.  They were best eaten warm.  It is kind of fun experimenting here and there.

Paleo Pizza...Wha?!

Well almost...according to some it is Paleo...and on Friday night "almost" is good enough for me! 

So I don't as a general rule eat dairy.  For the past 30 days I have been pretty strict about that. Jessica was doing her first Whole 30 and I was supporting her in that.  She finished on Thursday...Woo-hoo!  Way to go Sis!  I'm proud of you.  When I'm not being super strict I'll have a little dairy (cheese) maybe like once every couple weeks.   It doesn't seem to bother me.  Some people still eat dairy while eating paleo/primal...I guess it is up to you.  I suggest cutting it out for a while and then reintroducing it to see how your body reacts.

So anyway...Kyle and I like to have this one on a Friday night...sit on the couch and maybe watch a movie.  It feels very indulgent...but still quite good for you!

The crust is cauliflower...yep...cauliflower.  I would suggest trying it with your kids.  A good way to get them to eat some veggies.  They don't even need to know!  C'mon...who doesn't love pizza!

Ingredients: The crust: (This makes 2 pizzas!)
  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 eggs
  • Some mozzarella cheese (I'm not sure how much?  A couple cups at the most.  Sometimes I put very little in it when I'm trying to "be good")
  • Italian Seasoning (to taste)
  • Onion Powder (to taste)
  • Garlic Powder (to taste)

Crust Preparations:
  1. Put cauliflower in food processor. (Or you can grate it...I had to do that a couple times when our food processor died!)
  2. Put cauliflower in microwave for about 7-8 minutes.
  3. Take out and let cool.  This step is important...but SO hard when you are hungry!
  4. Mix together cauliflower, cheese, eggs, and seasonings.
  5. Place half the mixture on a pizza pan (or stone) and push it out until it is a good pizza shape.
  6. Bake at 450 for about 15 minutes (until it starts to get golden)

While that is baking...make your sauce. Or you can use a pre-made one...but they usually have sugar in them.

Sauce Ingredients: (somebody might have a really good recipe...I just eyeball things)
  • 1 can Tomato Paste
  • Olive oil
  • A little apple sauce
  • Italian seasonings
  • Onion/Garlic powder to taste

Sauce Preparation:
  1. Mix together and microwave...or prepare on the stove top

When the "crust" is with tomato sauce and whatever toppings you like.  I like to put some Canadian bacon and Zucchini.  I love the crunch of the Zucchini. (Kyle put some pepperoni on his half.) Then top with a little more cheese.

Now put your pizza under the broiler until it starts to get bubbly.  Keep an eye on it. :)  Nothing is more disappointing to getting side-tracked and coming back to burnt pizza!

SO DELICIOUS!! :)  I'm getting hungry just thinking about it.  It makes a great breakfast the next day too...Cold pizza!

Crock Pot Carnitas

This turned out really yummy!! :) (I know the picture doesn't look super appetizing.)  I was planning on making some coconut flour tortillas to go with it - but Kyle ended up having to work overtime and didn't get home until I was already in bed. I just ate mine with some salad. Maybe next time we'll try it with the tortillas.

So this was pretty easy.  It is so nice to come home and have dinner all ready to go. :) I didn't really measure I'll do my best to remember. 

  • 2-3 pounds of Pork
  • 1 can green chili
  • 1 can Ro-tel
  • Cumin
  • Chili powder
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Paleo Ketchup
  • Vinegar
  • Spicy Brown mustard
  • A little orange juice
Yeah...I can't remember measurements...just a little of this...a little of that.

  1. Put all ingredients in Crock Pot on low for about 6 hours (or more).
  2. Pull apart with fork
  3. Serve

EASY!  And really tasty.  Except I think I would like a little more spice in mine.  Although my sister had some and she thought it was pretty spicy.