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Roasted Butternut Squash in Lard | Nom Nom Paleo

15 Feb

If lard freaks you out…. Coconut Oil…

http://nomnompaleo.com/post/2346026303/roasted-butternut-squash-in-lard

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Sublime + Ginger

2 Feb

Wheeee! Madly, truly, deeply in smoothie heaven with ginger and lime. This morning’s recipe:

Apple
Ginger root
Lime
Through the juicer.

That concoction into the blender with:

Almond milk
Vanilla protein powder
Half an avocado
Baby spinach

Yum!

Today’s hitch in my giddy up: Lunch.

Went with the Queen Mum. Ordered a warm spinach salad. It came and I hated it. It was fine, but my taste buds wanted nothing to do with it. I ate some of Mom’s margarita pizza. Ugh.

Then the sugar cravings hit. I was thiscloseIamnotkidding to pulling into the Dunkin Donuts. Who would know? I rationalized every possible argument. I need it, I deserve it, it’s only ONE donut, etc.

I was able to talk myself out of it, THIS TIME.

Big learning curve I am on.

Recap, End of January

1 Feb

It’s been a few days while I jump back on the wagon.  I made sure to get back on my CLEAN/Paleo Sunday after our weekend in Orlando and Bern’s festivities.  Sunday was mostly liquids, a bike ride and some pulled pork and veggies.  Monday and Tuesday I was back on track and it feels very good.  I really like that sugar as a treat instead of a major food group.

I have been off the prednisone now for a week and I can tell you it’s the clean eating that’s given me all this energy. I normally wake up between 4:30 to 5am. I am not dragging anymore. I haven’t felt as bloated and I seem to have more energy

There may be a few pieces of pizza on Superbowl Sunday, but I really am morphing into that healthy food cave girl.  Yay me! 

Debbie Forbes, LMT
Massage Chick, CrossFit Kool Aid Drinker, Clean Eater, Cave Girl and Yoga devoTEE

Scope me out at: http://Www.IslandMassageOnline.com, WwwDebbieForbes.com and http://www.blackdogwellness.wordpress.com

What the Heck is Ghee?

27 Jan

On my CleanStart/Paleo bent, I keep seeing recipes that call for Ghee.  What the heck? On the Paleo Lifestyle dairy is a no-no, so essentially you are taking the milk solids out of butter.  Who knew?  Here it is…  df

 

D.I.Y. Ghee

I love ghee, and am ecstatic that it’s Whole9-approved for the latest version of the Whole30. Ghee — a traditional Indian preparation of clarified butter — has been one of my go-to fats for high-heat cooking ever since I went Paleo, and I use it to prepare everything from vegetable stir-frys to meaty stews. 

Yes, it’s cheaper and easier to get your hands on butter, and normally, if you’re okay with small amounts of full-fat dairy from grass-fed cows, more power to you. But if you’re on a Whole30, butter’s out. 

The solution? Buy some ghee, or make some yourself. It’s not hard to clarify some high-quality butter to remove all the potentially problematic milk solids — and infuse the delicious fat with a deep, nutty taste to boot. I promise you: The process is quick and painless, and you’ll end up with a yummy lactose- and casein-free cooking fat that’ll knock your socks off.

Here’s how to make a small batch (¾ cup) of ghee: 

Start with 1 cup of unsalted butter from grass fed cows. A number of supermarkets and specialty stores (including Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and Costco) now stock Kerrygold butter, so don’t skimp out and get the crappy stuff from the gas station snack shop. Quality matters, remember?

Throw the butter into a medium saucepan over low heat, and melt it.

Once the butter’s melted, the clear fat will separate from the milk solids. Continue to simmer the butter gently.

Once it starts bubbling, you’ll know that the water’s cooking off.

Watch for the bubbles to gradually get smaller, until the surface of the butter resembles a foam. The milk solids will then start to brown, and some of the solids will clump together and cling to the sides of the pan.

Keep a close eye on the pan. Once the milk solids turn a deep golden brown and start falling to the bottom (about 8 to 10 minutes after the melted butter starts bubbling), remove the pan from the heat.

Strain the hot ghee through a triple layer of cheesecloth into a heat-safe bowl or measuring cup.

See all the nasty bits you just filtered out? Toss ‘em out.

Store the ghee in a sealed glass jar.

After the milk solids have been removed, you don’t need to refrigerate the ghee — but I recommend keeping your homemade ghee in the fridge to be on the safe side. 

Once it’s cold, the ghee will be opaque and silky-smooth — perfect for scooping out with a spoon and throwing into a hot skillet…

…or an oven-baked sweet potato.

Ghee isn’t difficult to make, and the ready-made stuff is a fantastic option, too — especially if you’re pressed for time and/or lazy. We’ve whipped up batches of our own ghee, but I also dig my big jar of Whole30-approved Pure Indian Foods’ organic grass-fed ghee.

No excuses, people: Get your ghee on.

Slaw with Tangy Carrot Ginger Dressing – OMG! This is PRETTY!

27 Jan

Red Cabbage Slaw with Tangy Carrot Ginger Dressing

I was inspired to make this cabbage slaw after reading the awesome ode to cabbage on CaveGirl Eats. She’s one smart and sassy cavegirl.

I love me some cabbage but I don’t always have 2.5 hours to make my favorite braised cabbage recipe. Sometimes I just wanna chop up a raw cabbage, throw on some dressing and be done with it. So that’s what I did tonight.

Here’s what I gathered to make enough slaw for 3 hungry adults:

  • ½ a red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • handful of cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • ½ avocado, diced
  • handful of toasted slivered almonds (optional)
  • 2-4 tablespoons of tangy carrot ginger dressing (recipe below)

Here’s how I made it:

I threw everything except for the avocados in a bowl and mixed it together.

You can let the slaw sit in the fridge for a few hours until you’re ready to eat it.

Right before I served the slaw, I tossed on the diced avocados so they wouldn’t get all brown and icky looking. Toasted almond slivers are another great addition to the slaw but don’t add them early because they’ll get soggy.

Here’s what I gathered to make about a cup of tangy carrot-ginger dressing:

  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 large carrots, chopped  
  • 1-inch knob of ginger
  • 2 scallions, whites only
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup Paleo mayonnaise
  • Salt and Pepper

I dumped the vinegar, carrots, ginger, scallions, and mustard into my Vitamix and blitzed everything until it was liquefied. Then, I added the mayonnaise, salt and pepper to taste and blitzed on low until everything was combined.

I’m not gonna lie — the dressing is pretty tangy but the acidity is cut really well with the raw cabbage.

World’s Best Braised Green Cabbage

27 Jan

Recipe: World’s Best Braised Green Cabbage

Molly Stevens’s recipe is AWESOME. I make this cabbage all the time because it’s awesome. Yes, it takes 2.5 hours from start to finish, but the total prep time is only ~10-15 minutes. Plus, it makes your house smell so damn yummy.  

Before:

After:

Here’s the recipe:

  • 1 medium head green cabbage (about 2 pounds)
  • 1 large red or yellow onion, peeled and thickly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut in 1/4-inch coins
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock or water
  • 1/4 cup lard, ghee, or bacon grease
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Aleppo peppers (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a large gratin dish or baking dish (13-by-9-inch works well) with fat of choice.

2. Peel off and discard any bruised or ragged outer leaves from the cabbage. Cut cabbage in half, then into 8 wedges. (Don’t trim away the cabbage heart.) Arrange the wedges in the baking dish on their sides, overlapping a little but trying for a single layer. Scatter the onion and carrot over the cabbage. Drizzle with stock or water and the melted fat. Season with salt, pepper and pepper flakes. Cover tightly with foil and transfer to the oven.

3. Braise for 1 hour. Uncover and gently turn the wedges with tongs, keeping them as intact as possible. Add a little water if pan is drying out. Cover pan and return to oven. Bake 1 hour.

4. Remove the foil, increase the heat to 400 and roast until vegetables begin to brown, about 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature, sprinkled with fleur de sel and/or Aleppo pepper.

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs

27 Jan

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs

I just got a new kitchen gadget that I’m totally crushing on…

…a julienne peeler!

It makes me want to make noodles out of every vegetable in my crisper! Yes, I have a mandolin and a food processor but this tool is efficient, compact, inexpensive (currently less than $7!), and quick to clean. You can have “noodles” on the table in no time flat!

Here’s what I gathered to make zucchini noodles for 4 people:

  • 6 zucchini
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

Here’s how I made it:

I washed the zucchini…

…and cut a thin slice off the bottom of each one so they wouldn’t roll around on the cutting board.

Then, I placed the zucchini flat-side down on the cutting board and went to town with the julienne peeler. I kept the top on, so I could grasp it to keep the squash steady.

Poof! A big bowl of noodles!

I placed the noodles in a covered microwave safe dish…

…and nuked them on high for about 2 minutes.

I watched them closely so I wouldn’t overcook them. Nobody likes soggy noodles.

I drained the excess liquid and tossed the zucchini with salt and pepper…

…and topped them with Rao’s marinara sauce and meatballs (which you can easily make from sausage).

See? It IS super easy!

Cauliflower & Carrot Puree

27 Jan

Cauliflower & Carrot Puree

If you haven’t noticed, I’m obsessed with making veggie purees this week. Tonight I made another one with cauliflower, carrots, onions, and garlic. I love the original recipe for garlic cauliflower mashed potatoes but with this recipe you get a healthy dose of beta carotene AND clean-up is a breeze — just one pot and the immersion blender. I’m all about the shortcuts.

Here’s what I gathered to feed 6 adults:

  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • 1 large head of cauliflower, cut up into florets
  • 3 large carrots, cut into small chunks
  • ½ medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup organic chicken broth
  • ¼ cup water
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Splash of heavy cream (optional)

Here’s how I made it:

I chopped up my veggies…

… and melted 3 tablespoons of butter in a large stock pot over medium heat. 

Then, I dropped the veggies, broth, and water into the bubbling fat. 

When the liquid started boiling, I covered the pot, turned down the heat to low, and let everything simmer until softened (25-30 minutes). Make sure your pot doesn’t dry out!

I added another tablespoon of butter, heavy cream, salt, and pepper and blitzed everything with my immersion blender

…until smooth.

I think I just like the texture of baby food…