How Time Flies (Paleo Moroccan Meatballs)

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Can you believe it’s already the beginning of 2013?

Life is pretty busy around the Martin/Dowe household. Three blogs to upkeep, jobs to show up too, and races to train for, it seems there are not enough hours in the day to get that never ending “to-do” list under control.

The holidays are finally behind us and we won’t lie: we consumed a lot of sugar. Christmas chocolates, sweet drinks from Starbucks, gum drop cakes and pumpkin pies, it felt like it would never get back under control. In the consumption of said sugar there’s been a shift in thinking. Both of us experienced quite an emotional upheaval during the month of December and both recognize the direct correlation between the consumption of sugar and how crappy it makes us feel.

Both physically and emotionally.

As we continue to read “It Starts with Food” there is concrete understanding of how what we eat affects us on a cellular level. We, in turn, are using that understanding when making food choices that are more in line with how we want to feel emotionally so that we can get to doing what we do best: Kicking ass and taking names!

In order to get back to doing what we do best we’ve refocused what we make in the kitchen. It’s not like we veered off a Paleo foundation in our own kitchen but because of the holidays we spent a lot of time eating foods that other people had prepared or eating the foods that came in enticing chocolate boxes with the guides telling you what was inside each little square morsel. To get back to doing what we know is good for us, we picked out some of our favorite meals and set about making them over and over (and over again).

The really nice thing about the Moroccan Meatballs is they are so freaking easy. A little meat, a little spice and 30 minutes in the oven and BAM…good food that’s good for you!

The original recipe came from EveryDay Paleo and as usual we made changes according to our own tastes (and what was available in the kitchen)…

Enjoy!

Paleo Moroccan Meatballs

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs Ground Beef
  • 3 Cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 2 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 tsp Chili Flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • Pinch of Cayenne Pepper

Preheat oven to 350F.

The Players

Okay, hold on to your seats for the rest of the process…

  1. Line cookie sheet with foil (for easy clean up)
  2. Mix all ingredients together in large mixing bowl
  3. Form into golf ball size meatballs and place on cookie sheet
  4. Cook in oven for approx. 25 minutes or until cooked thoroughly

spices minced garlic

mix all ingredients together meatballs

SAM_1333

Seriously people it doesn’t get much more easier than making these tasty balls (did they just say tasty balls?) of Moroccan goodness. We make them all the time. We’ll use a combination of beef and pork, add more garlic or less chili flakes depending on what we’re in the mood for. Because there are only two of us there’s always plenty of left overs for lunches during the week.

We’re looking forward to seeing what kinds of awesomeness is headed our way during the 2013 year. We hope it’s a year full of making great food that helps us in our on going need to move forward towards all we deserve to accomplish…

~Now that’s good eatin’ (in the New Year) folks!

Some cool changes and Paleo Thai Curry Beef…

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We took a big leap this week and bought our domain name. Funny because we had originally wanted the domain name www(dot)TheHDD(dot)com but when we began our research we found out that we would need to purchase the name from some other company…

For $3000!!!!

(seriously, that’s just ridiculous)

We’ve had this blog for just over a year (can you believe it) and figured it was time to take our commitment one step further and drop the “wordpress” in our dot com and lucky for us thehealthydynamicduo hadn’t been bought up by some strange virtual real estate monster…

Yay for us!

In other news, we found a really cool program for eco friendly printing options over at PrintFriendly. Now when you want to print out one of our recipes you can just hit the “Eco friendly print” button on the bottom and it will take you to another page where you have the option to print without pictures! You can also delete any text you deem unnecessary (we can get a bit wordy) and change the text size so its easier to read.

Yay for you!

You can test out Eco Friendly Print option with this recipe cause look at all the extra stuff you can delete just for the heck of it! Now let’s get on to the recipe portion of this blog post shall we?

We love Thai food.

Give us a plate of pad Thai and a large helping of panang curry and we feel like nothing can go wrong with the world. The heat of the spices warming out mouths while the noodle-y goodness fills our bellies.

As Paleo eaters we enjoy the occasional “splurge” on foods we love but we know all too often if we’re not careful one splurge turns into two, turns into “can you please shove this entire chocolate cake in my mouth”…It doesn’t happen to everyone but for us we know it can happen pretty easily.

To combat the urge to eat out in search of those splurge meals we try to recreate them at home. We know it may not be exactly what we get when we sit down at a restaurant but we also know our meal won’t come with processed foods, extra salt and ingredients we have a hard time pronouncing.

We found the original Thai Curry Beef recipe over at Paleo Parents and as usual changed a few ingredients according to our tastes (and what we had in the fridge).

Enjoy!

Paleo Thai Curry Beef

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs Beef (we used flank steak cut into thin strips)
  • 1 Onion (peeled and chopped)
  • Carrots (2 -3 large or small organic bunch from local farm – peeled and chopped)
  • 1 Leek (cleaned and chopped)
  • 1 Head of Chinese Cabbage (washed and chopped)
  • Garlic (we used 7 cloves)
  • 1/2 C Coconut Milk
  • 1 Tbsp Curry Paste (red or yellow)
  • 1 Tbsp wheat free soy sauce ( or coconut aminos)
  • 1 Tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp FoC (Fat of Choice)

The Players

The Sauces

In wok or frying pan on med/high add FoC. Add beef and brown on all sides. Remove beef and set aside.

Beef

In same heated wok/frying pan add onions/carrots/leek and cook until tender.

Onion Carrots and Leek

Return beef to wok/frying pan. Add curry paste and stir to coat meat/vegetables. Add coconut milk and mix thoroughly. Add wheat free soy sauce (or coconut aminos) and fish sauce, stir and reduce heat to simmer.

beef and veggies

Simmer for about 20 minutes.

Serve on bed of Chinese Cabbage

Paleo Thai Curry Beef

~ Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

If our trainer likes it, you know it’s gotta be good! (Paleo Spicy Pineapple Chili)

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It’s no secret we like love to work out.

When you’re on a journey to lose over a combined 200+ pounds (yes we said 200+) you come to appreciate the strength and endurance gained while leaving some serious sweat on the gym floor.

We run. We lift heavy shit. We get our hearts pumping and our muscles working in ways we both never thought imaginable. While living apart we each had our own trainers that we both love and respected. When I (Tara) came to Halifax, I felt I was infringing on Meegan’s already established relationship with Chris. It was silly but those of us that have had long term (and significant weight loss) relationships with one particular trainer understand that feeling of “butting in”.

Fast forward to today and I’ve gotten over that “I’m totally stepping in where I don’t belong” feeling and get my ass handed to me (and trust me it happens quite often) along side with Meegan multiple times of the week. One of the things I really appreciate about Chris is he’s become our “taste tester” for most of the recipes here on TheHDD.

We make it.

He eats it.

When something is really really (really) good, he’s sure to let us know.

(that means make it again asap)

This is one of those recipes.

The original recipe for the Paleo Spicy Pineapple Chili was found over at Civilized Caveman and as usual we changed things up according to our preferences. This chili is freaking amazing and you can be sure we’ll be making it over and over again (not just to make Chris happy but for our tummy’s too!)

Enjoy!

Paleo Spicy Pineapple Chili

Ingredients:

  • 8 – 10 bacon strips, cut into thin pieces
  • 2 Medium Onions (peeled and diced)
  • 5 Sweet Peppers (seeded and chopped)
  • Garlic (how much is up to you – we used 6 cloves)
  • 2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 1/4 C Chili Powder (less for more mild, more for a super kick)
  • 2 Tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 – 2 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes (see chili powder)
  • 1/2 Fresh Pineaple (peeled and diced)
  • 1 lb Fresh Tomatos
  • 1 13oz Tomato Paste

Now if you need to cut out some time you can always buy canned pineapple and a nice tomato sauce but we work hard to keep our “can opening” to a minimum.

The nice thing about this recipe is everything is cooked in a stock pot. Cut it up, cook it up, simmer and BAM!

  • Cut your bacon into thin strips and place in a large Stock Pot over medium heat and brown until cooked to your preference.
  • Add onions, pepper and garlic. Stir often and cook until onions become translucent.

  • Add ground beef, chili powder, red pepper flakes and cumin. Mix together and cook until ground beef is cooked thoroughly.

  • Add remaining ingredients (pineapple, tomatoes, tomato paste) and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes.

 

This will make about 6 servings (1 1/2 cups each serving). We usually put quinoa or mashed sweet potato on the bottom of our bowl.

This chili has a lot of heat to it so if you like to have things a little more on the mild side adjust accordingly. On the flip side if you like a lot of heat try spices as listed but then next time adjust to your preference…

~ Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

When it looks fancy, it must take forever (or not) – Paleo Spinach Stuffed Chicken.

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You’ve invited that someone special over.

You want to impress them with your culinary skills but can hardly boil water without boiling it away and scalding the pot (like we would know anything about that).

This is one of those meals that not only tastes really (really) delicious, but it looks amazing and will surely score you some points as you’re maybe trying to “score” on a new level.

(see what we did there)?

The hardest part about this recipe? Butterfly(ing) the chicken breast and if you’re certain you’re going to screw this up, don’t be afraid to ask your grocer’s butcher to do it for you.

The original recipe comes from Budget Paleo and as always changes were made according to our tastes and preferences.

Enjoy!

Paleo Spinach Stuffed Chicken with Bacon

Ingredients:

  • Boneless Chicken (we used three; butterflied)
  • Bacon Slices (we used 7: 3 to wrap chicken, 4 to stuff)
  • 2 peppers (seeded and diced)
  • 1 Onion (peeled and diced)
  • 2 – 3 Cups Spinach
  • Garlic (we used 6 cloves)

Preheat oven 375F

A few readers have mentioned that it’s a little difficult to print out the recipe because of all the pictures (We do love taking pictures). One idea we want to try is putting all the pictures at either the beginning or end of the blog post and have the instructions clumped together so you can highlight and copy to a word document.

Let us know if this works better / worse / didn’t really matter.

Instructions:

Separate the bacon used to wrap chicken from the bacon used for stuffing. In a frying pan or skillet add chopped stuffing bacon and cook thoroughly. Remove and in same bacon grease saute garlic / onion / peppers until tender. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Return chopped bacon to frying pan and mix together. Remove from stove top while you prepare chicken.

Butterfly each chicken breast and lay it on top of one slice of bacon (this will make it easier to wrap instead of waiting to wrap after stuffed which we didn’t do and it got a little messy). Spread bacon/veggie evenly on one side of chicken and then close up chicken breast. Wrap bacon around entire chicken breast and place in glass baking dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper (optional).

Bake (uncovered) for about 30 – 35 minutes. Increase temperature to 450 – 500F and brown bacon for about 10 minutes or until browned to your preference.

This particular time we paired it with a simple vegetable so that the “fanciness” of the stuffed chicken really stood out. We’re not sure who we were trying to impress since it was just the two of us but whatever!

     ~Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

Do you know where your food comes from? (Paleo Beef and Sweet Potato Stew)

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To know us is to know we live in a neighborhood here in Halifax Nova Scotia known as The Hydrostone. A little bit of awesome is that in 2011 The Hydrostone was named the second greatest neighborhood in all of Canada by the Canadian Institute of Planners.

It’s an amazing place to live.

Not hardly a stone’s throw away from our front door is a recent addition to the neighborhood; Highland Drive Butchery owned and operated by Jessi Gillis.

As soon as we saw the “coming soon” sign go up in her windows we just about freaked out. One of the most important aspects of us eating a Paleo foundation is wanting to find our food as close to home as possible. Having only one income at the moment (fingers crossed for that to change sooner than later) makes it a little difficult to do this 100% of the time but this year we participated in our first CSA (Community Shared Agriculture) and you will often find us down at the Seaport Market stocking up on in-season goodness.

The other day we had a hankering for slow cooker beef stew and this is where our lovely friend and meat connoisseur, Jessi comes into play. Word on the street is her stewing meat is the best in town and if you catch her on the right day there is some delicious beef stock to be snatched up.

We won’t lie to you. We’re not in a place financially to always use Highland Drive for our butcher needs but when we do it’s almost magical.

 

 

 

 

1 1/2 pounds of stewing meat, 2 cups of just made beef stock and some fresh veggies were in our hot little hands we found the original recipe over at FitViews (p.s. Kerri is awesome) and as usual, we changed a few things according to our tastes (and what we had in the fridge).

Enjoy!

Paleo Slow Cooker Beef and Sweet Potato Stew

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 – 2 lbs Stewing Beef
  • 2 C Beef Stock
  • 1 Tbsp FoC (Fat of Choice)
  • 1 Large Onion (chopped)
  • 2 Carrots (peeled and chunked)
  • 2 Parsnips (cleaned and chunked)
  • 3 Large Sweet Potatoes (cleaned and chunked)
  • 2 – 3 Cloves Garlic (minced)
  • Salt / Pepper to taste

The original recipe said to just throw everything together in the slow cooker for a few hours, but one thing we found to bring out some truly fantastic flavors of our meats is to sear it first…

Heat FoC on high either in frying pan or wok. When nice and hot sear the meat for about 2 – 3 minutes trying to brown all sides. When done toss in slow cooker and prepare the rest of the veggies.

Chop the onion, carrot, parsnip, sweet potato (skins on or off is personal preference), mince the garlic and toss into slow cooker.

 

Pour in beef stock, cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours (time will vary according to your slow cooker)…

Thanks Jessi for some of the best stewing meat we’ve ever had!

~ Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

Paleo Slow Cooker Chili…

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There is something to be said about hearing the winds howl outside and hunkering down with a nice big bowl of chili. Pull out your slow cooker in the morning, cut up a few vegetables, toss in some ground beef and spices and when you’re home and ready to warm up your outside with comfy jammies and wool socks it’s time to warm up your insides with this delicious meal.

While preparing chili can happen most anytime we like to make big batches of it during the weekend so that it can be used for lunches later in the week. Tara will also tell you that you can literally throw an egg on top of anything and make it into a breakfast (true story as she does it all the time with left overs). Leftovers can also be used to as a topping to one of our all time favorite paleo eats: Sweet Potato Pizza.

The thing about chili is there is so much “wiggle” room. The base is the same (a little meat, a little veggie, a little spice) but the combination is totally up to you. We’ve got a few chili recipes that will eventually make it’s way to TheHDD blog but for now this one is the most basic.

Enjoy!

Slow Cooker Paleo Chili

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 1 28oz Can of Diced Tomatoes (we used one with extra garlic)
  • 1 Onion (peeled and chopped)
  • Peppers (large = 3 or 4 sweet peppers = 8 – 10)
  • Garlic (we used 6 large cloves)
  • 2 – 3 Tbsps of chili powder (depending on your tastes)

Seriously this is gonna be easy folks.

In a large skillet on medium heat, brown the meat until cooked thoroughly. Drain and set aside (keeping some fat in skillet for garlic and onions). Mince garlic, chop onions and put in skillet on low/medium heat. Allow onions to cook for about 5 minutes, add chili powder and mix well. Continue to cook onions for another 5 minutes or so…

You can add the beef back into the skillet or you can just throw everything into the slow cooker at this point…

Clean and chop your sweet peppers and add to slow cooker.

Add diced tomatoes (we chose not to drain first), mix together well, cover and cook on low heat for about 4-5 hours.

Now it may seem that there’s not much “kick” or spice to this chili and you would be right. However the garlic and chili powder were just the right combination to bring heat to the dish. Remember to adjust accordingly to your own tastes…

Depending on your definition of Paleo, you can serve this will quinoa on the bottom or if you’re not following a paleo foundation, pasta would be right tasty as well.

~ Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

The end of outdoor seating. (oh and Roasted Pumpkin/Butternut squash soup)

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Not much more than a stone’s throw away is a really nice sushi restaurant called Himachi’s. When we say stone’s throw we mean we could throw the stone and probably beat it to the front door it’s that close.

You know when Spring is officially here because they build this elaborate outdoor seating area that actually cuts into the street. It’s very exciting when they put it up because even though it’s still a little chillier than you’d like, you know it won’t be long before warmer days are upon us.

You know Winter is fast approaching when they take the outdoor seating down.

Today it was a sad day in our neighborhood, as we heard the pounding of the hammers and the grunting of the employees as they meticulously tore down our last hopes of warmer days and pretty much said “Get ready for Winter people because it is right around the corner”…

Gone are the days of flip flops and lazy hours spent at the beach. It won’t be long until we’re salting the steps and shoveling our driveway. Turning up the heat and wearing comfy slippers to combat the the chill in our hardwood floors.

In our kitchen we’ve been stocking up on seasonal squashes and making as much soup as possible for our freezer. We’ve got enough soup to last us through the most blizzardy of blizzards. Throw a little sausage, ground beef or quinoa on the bottom of any soup bowl and your meal is super hearty, super good and you tummy is super warm (along with your feet since we know you have fuzzy socks on too!)

Below is the  recipe for pumpkin butternut squash. The original recipe came from Joy The Baker but we’re finding that once you start making soup, you don’t need to go in search of a recipe to follow. We google combinations we think might work well together and if someone else has already attempted it we take that as a sign to go forth and create good soup!

This made quite a bit (about 12 cups) so that we could freeze most of it for later use. You can adjust accordingly for the amount you want to make.

Enjoy!

Roasted Pumpkin Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 Medium Pumpkins (peeled and cubed – or roast with skin then peel)
  • 2 Medium Butternut squash (see pumpkin)
  • 2 Leeks (washed and cut)
  • 1 Onion (peeled and cubed)
  • Garlic (We used 10 cloves)
  • Olive Oil (for roasting)
  • 5 – 6 Cups of Broth (veggie or chicken)
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Milk
  • Almond Milk to cut soup if too thick (optional amounts)

Preheat oven to 375F.

Whether to cut the peel off the butternut / pumpkin is really up to you. The first time we made this we left the peel on but now that we’ve made a few different soups we think it’s easier to take it off before the roasting. More out of impatience waiting for everything to cool down before we get to making the actual soups. It’s really a personal preference…

Cut, remove the “guts’ (keep those seeds for roasting!) then chop into 2 – 3 inch pieces. With a little olive oil coat the pieces and put onto cookie sheet (we used aluminum for easy clean up)

      

Roast in the oven for about 20 minutes. While the pumpkin / butternut squash is roasting you can prepare the leeks, onion and garlic. Cut stalks off of leeks, peel onion and garlic. Toss is small amount of olive oil and onto cookie sheet.

After the initial 20 minutes, we gave the pumpkin and butternut a good stir and returned to oven (now with third cookie sheet of onion, leeks and garlic) and continued to roast of additional 20 minutes (if you left the peel on, a fork should be able to poke through with no problem).

While roasting everything, you may want to consider warming your broth. Not sure why the idea of cold broth just irritates us but it does and we know this is a personal preference (more because we can hardly wait to eat this when it’s done and warm broth makes that happen quicker).

Once roasting is done you can a) pull out your handy food processor b) grab the blender or c) take out that fancy immersion blender (Dear Santa, we’ve been very good and would like an immersion blender under the tree!). We’re going with option “a” for now…

In the food processor (in batches unless you have a big big processor), add roasted pumpkin, butternut squash, leeks, onion, garlic and coconut milk. Pulse until mixed well then add broth until you’ve reached desired consistency.

This is typically a thicker soup. If that’s not your style then you can add almond milk (remember we try to stay as paleo as possible so no cream for us) until it’s right where you like it!

We garnished with pumpkin seeds (without the shell) and just a bit of pepper.

This is gonna be so good on those cold winter days!

As a little extra bonus we took some pictures of our kitchen in the midst of all this soup making. Creating foods can be intimidating because you think the person sharing the recipe is working in a professional kitchen and is all neat and tidy about things…

Here are two things to know about TheHDD: Our kitchen is nothing fancy and we are far from neat and tidy when it comes to creating good foods!

~ Now that’s good eatin’ folks

(and a lot of cleaning too)

Whole30 and Paleo Chicken Pad Thai

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We’ve been having a bit of a discussion in the Martin/Dowe household…

With the upcoming Holiday season descending upon us (Canadian Thanksgiving, Halloween, American Thanksgiving and Christmas) we’ve been preparing ourselves for the onslaught of food that just seems to never stop.

One of the things we’ve been talking about doing is going back to a strict 30 day paleo foundation. Some of you will remember we were using the hashtag #30daypaleo a while back as we proceeded to eliminate all dairy, all grains, all types of sweetener (including honey and maple syrup) and of course anything processed for 30 days. After the 30 days we introduced small amounts of dairy (greek yogurt and cheese) and some sweetners (paleo approved).

We completed the 30 days with smashing success but as time went on we found ourselves introducing more types foods and many of them not paleo friendly (think desserts). We ate out more. We were more flexible about what went into our bodies and we can feel it taking it’s toll on us.

A small group of people on Facebook are about to begin “Whole30”, which is basically the same idea as #30daypaleo, and we’re jumping aboard the ship! Most people who follow a paleo foundation suggest eliminating many of the “paleo friendly” foods during the first 30 days, the only difference is that the people over at Whole9 have an official title for the first month: Whole30

We begin tomorrow…

But in reality it won’t be that much of a shift. We know what we’re doing. We know how to make our kitchen Whole30 friendly. We’re just hoping it helps curb our “outings” where the kitchens are not Whole30 friendly!

Below is the recipe for Paleo Pad Thai that we found over at Health-Bent. They listed this as a side dish but we took it a little further and made it into an entree by adding chicken (meaning we double up on most of the original ingredients). We also found that the “peanut” sauce was a little bland so we added one of our most favorite ingredients: Coconut Milk.

And this is definitely Whole30 approved!

Enjoy!

Paleo Chicken Pad Thai

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb Chicken Breast or Thigh (cubed)
  • 4 – 6 Zucchinis
  • 1 Onion (diced)
  • 1 C Coconut Milk (we used Thai Kitchen)
  • 1 Tbsp Ginger (minced)
  • Garlic (we used 8 – minced)
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1/3 Cup Almond Butter
  • 2 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 Lime
  • FoC (Fat of Choice) for sauteing chicken/veggies

Before you begin throwing everything in your saute pan, prepare those zucchinis. If you have a mandolin of sorts this will work best. If not then you can practice your knife skills by slicing into thin strips.

Once those are done and off to the side, heat your FoC in a sautee pan over medium heat. Saute garlic, ginger and onion for a few minutes then add chicken.

 

Once Chicken is cooked thoroughly, add lime, vinegar, fish sauce, chili powder, almond butter and coconut milk. Heat on low so as not to scald the almond butter. Once a sauce like consistency  add zucchini. Stir together and let cook for about 10 – 15 minutes (until zucchini is cooked to your taste – some like it more firm than others).

You can serve this over quinoa or rice cauliflower but it was so filling we ate it with just a few orange slices (and it makes the plate look nice)..

This dish will impress even the most anti-paleo of eaters! And if it doesn’t well that just means more for you!

Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

Let’s make some soup (Roasted Sweet Potato and Fennel)

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Dear Fall,

Oh how we love thee. With your brightly changing colors and your cooler nights. The oversized sweaters / hoodies and comfy socks. The hunkering down under a quilt with a good movie or that book you’ve been wanting to read. The howling of the wind on the outside as your warm and cozy on the inside. Oh and let’s not forget the delicious (delicious!) soups you inspire us to make.

Here are two things you need to know about us:

  1. Fall is our absolute favorite season (Spring is a close second)
  2. We love making soups.

We’ve been stocking our freezers with homemade soups in preparation of the upcoming winter and with it being prime squash season we’ve been taking full advantage of all the varieties we can get our hands on.

The original recipe can be found over at Robin-Ellis.net and as always we made a few changes according to our personal tastes. Make a double batch and freeze some for those nights when soup is the only thing that will take the chill of your bones!

Enjoy!

Roasted Sweet Potato and Fennel Soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs Sweet Potato (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 Large Fennel Bulb (cleaned and chopped)
  • 2 Medium Onions (chopped)
  • 4 – 8 Cloves of Garlic (remember we love our garlic)
  • Ginger (thumb size – peeled and finely chopped)
  • 3 Cups Chicken Stock (Vegetable stock will work too)
  • 2 Cups Almond Milk (Water will work too)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Greek Yogurt for topping (optional)

Preheat oven to 400F.

It’s best if you roast the sweet potatoes separately from the onion, fennel and garlic. The sweet potatoes take a little longer so it will be of good use of your time to start them then get to work on the other vegetables.

When peeling the sweet potatoes you may want to leave the skin on at least one to give it a more deeper “earthy” flavor. It’s really a personal taste and for us we left the skin on a few.

Drizzle with a small amount of olive oil (we used a mushroom sage oil), toss then spread on foil lined cookie sheet. This is a good time to add a little black pepper if you want or you can wait until everything is ready to go into the food processor / blender.

Roast potatoes for about about 10 minutes. In the mean time grab a second foil lined cookie sheet and prepare Onion, Fennel and Garlic (chop and lightly toss in oil like the sweet potatoes). If you don’t know how to prepare fennel, here’s a really nice “How To” to follow.

Side Note: Don’t be so quick to throw the top of your fennel away. If you are making smoothies in the morning as a quick breakfast think about adding the stalk of the fennel as one of your ingredients. Try a pineapple / fennel smoothie it’s divine.

When the 10 minutes is up on the sweet potatoes give them a good stir and return to oven. Add the fennel, onion and garlic to oven and continue to roast for an additional 10-15 minutes or until sweet potatoes are soft all the way through.

While everything is roasting in the oven, peel and finely chop your ginger. In medium sauce pan add chicken stock and when warm add ginger.

Once the roasting is complete pull out your handy food processor / blender / hand held submersion blender. In our household we have the handy dandy food processor. Just throw everything in there and slowly add the ginger chicken stock (a cup at a time should do the trick).

Blend until you reach the consistency that you desire. For us the three cups of chicken stock wasn’t enough so we continued to blend with almond milk for a more creamier texture. Water will also do the trick. How much you use will be up to your discrepancy.

The really nice thing about this soup is that while the sweet potatoes, fennel, onion and garlic blend smoothly together the ginger will remain finely chopped giving the soup a complex texture.

For an added extra bonus of tasty deliciousness, when ready to serve garnish a dollop of greek yogurt and course ground pepper. If you want this to remain fully Paleo use chilled coconut milk (i.e. Thai Kitchen brand) instead of greek yogurt.

~ Now that’s good eatin’ folks!

A new cookbook in theHDD house (and Paleo Chicken Lo Mein!)

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Sometimes Christmas come a little early…

For us it came just last week in the form of a cookbook that we are so very fortunate to have received. We don’t have many cookbooks (and very few of those are paleo focused) so we are like kids in the “candy” store when it comes to opening the pages of this book, clapping our hands and literally squeeing “What’s next, what’s next!?”

Over the next couple of months we’ll be featuring recipes that we’ve tasted and tested both from the book and from the website: Primal Palate.

The first recipe we choose is the Chicken “Lo-Mein” If you are familiar with Chinese Food then you will know that Lo-Mein is a typically made with a thin wheat noodle. As with most dishes it’s a pretty easy tweak of a few ingredients to from standard food to Paleo. In this case the noodles are replaced by cabbage and the soy sauce is replaced by coconut aminos or wheat free soy sauce (though hard core Paleoians – is that even a word? – would argue that the gluten free soy sauce is still made from rice but let’s not get too bent out of shape…)

As usual we added and subtracted ingredients per our tastesbuds (and made extra for lunches) but be assured the end result was just as amazing…

Enjoy!

Paleo Chicken “Lo Mein”

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs Chicken Breast (skinless, cubed)
  • 1 Medium Sized Head of Broccoli (chopped)
  • 1/2 Purple Cabbage (shredded)
  • 1 Small Bok Choy (chopped)
  • 1 C Water Chestnuts (small can, drained)
  • 2 Small Sweet Peppers (cut into medium strips)
  • 2 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Seeds
  • 1/4 C Almonds (chopped)
  • 2 Tbsp Ginger (minced)
  • 2 Tbsp Garlic (minced)
  • 1/4 C Gluten Free Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Oil

Before you do anything, prepare your veggies! Remember always work from least contaminate foods to most contaminate foods. Clean, cut, chop, shred and/or mince the broccoli, bok choy, cabbage, peppers, garlic, almonds, and ginger.

 

Cube your chicken and now we’re ready to put it all together!

If you have a wok, this will work best but if not use a large (preferably non-stick) frying pan. It’s a lot of veggies and you want to have room for things to mix well. Heat the Tbsp of sesame oil, add garlic and ginger and saute for about a minute.

Add chicken and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Add broccoli, bok choy, water chestnuts, and peppers and saute for another 2 – 3 minutes…

Add almonds and purple cabbage. Saute for additional minute then add gluten free soy sauce.

Continue to saute for an addition 2-3 minutes or until the cabbage begins to soften. Remove from heat and top with toasted sesame seeds!

Whether you are strictly paleo or not this recipe has a lot of room for your own additions (or subtractions). When we made this we served it over quinoa (again one of those “is that strict paleo” debates). You can serve it over rice, with the actual lo-mein noodles or eat it without anything at all…

~Now that’s good eatin’ folks!