Nom Nom Paleo

Paleo Eats: 7/15/12 (2012 CrossFit Games Day 3)

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We woke up late this morning. This would normally be a good thing, but it was the final day of the CrossFit Games, and the morning’s events were already starting. My hubby threw some clothes on the kids while I packed nuts, leftover kabobs, steamed vegetables, and lettuce-wrapped roast beef tacos to take to the Games. 

By the time we arrived at HDC and snagged our seats, the women were already finishing the Double Banger workout. The women are amazing and inspiring, but I do enjoy watching shirtless guys muscle their way through the grueling events.

The final team competition was fast and furious…

…but by the time Ute CrossFit celebrated their victory, the Double-Os had melted in the sun.

My hubby elected to stay (and burn to a crisp) in the stadium while the kids and I made our way to the Reebok Oasis tent. There, I parked us on a couch next to other mommies with kids. In the cool shade of the air-conditioned tent, the Double-Os and I ate the food I brought from the hotel while we pored over the pretty graphics and tantalizing recipes in Diane’s preview copy of Practical Paleo.

In between all this action, I watched Annie and Rich recapture their titles as the Fittest People In Our Solar System on the boob tube…

…but the Double-Os were more interested in playing with my iPhone.

 After the Games concluded, we hugged our friends goodbye and pinky swore to reunite next month in Boston for the Ancestral Health Symposium.

On a whim, I called up my sister and announced that we’d be arriving at her house in 30 minutes. When we showed up at her doorstep, my brother-in-law had already refrigerated some aloe leaves from his garden that we slathered over our burned arms and legs.

My brother-in-law grows EVERYTHING. I used to invite myself to my sister’s just to eat her terrific cooking, but these days, my BIL’s concoctions are an equally compelling draw. Last week, when we stopped by for a few minutes on our way down to the OC, he fried us up some hot dogs he made out of grass fed beef short ribs, and sliced us some homemade salumi. Not to be outdone, my sister made us some delicious chicken liver pate, carrot salad, and pickled kohlrabi.

And before we head back on the road, they’re going to load us up with batches of charcuterie, smoked meats, and kimchee. We obviously need to drop by more often.

For dinner, we all drove to  The Laxy Ox Canteen in Little Tokyo. 

The menu items are meant to be shared family-style, so we each picked an appealing vegetable and meat dish. The descriptions for each plate are somewhat vague, so unless you’re up for an unexpected surprise, be sure to specifically ask about hidden gluten.

We started with a stone fruit salad with whipped goat cheese (there were croutons mixed in that we left uneaten)…

…grilled cabbage salad…

…spicy caramelized cauliflower…

…braised short ribs with fried rabbit liver (gluten in the batter — but tasty!) over mashed potatoes and kale…

…pork chop with barbecue sauce over mashed spuds and mushrooms…

…and a braised lamb shank over mashed potatoes and chard.

The dining room at Laxy Ox Canteen is noisy, which is perfect for breeders with tots in tow. Our meal here with my sis and brother-in-law was a lovely way to cap off our trip in SoCal.

Plus, Paul from Primal Pastures hand-delivered two frozen, freshly processed pastured chickens to our hotel to bring back home with us.

It might just be the best parting gift ever. (Other than the grub we’re getting from my sister and BIL!)

Paleo Eats: 7/14/12 (2012 CrossFit Games Day 2)

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Our family was ready to tackle another long day at the CrossFit Games, but we were in no rush to get there early ‘cause our plan was to stay until the bitter end — or until the kids wilted, whichever came first.

No room service breakfast for us. Instead, we filled up on nuts, strawberries, and lettuce-wrapped tacos filled with roast beef and grape tomatoes.

Picky Lil-O is finally coming around and eating new foods! I guess persistence really does pay off…eventually.

My shoulders were sore from schlepping two heavy bags of food around the Home Depot Center yesterday, so I packed only a small bag filled with nuts, grapes, and my brother-in-law’s homemade salumi.

Day Two of the Games drew an even larger crowd than Day One, and once again, we parked way out in the fringes of the HDC lot and hoofed it to the venue with the kids. After spending the previous morning melting under the hot sun at the track, we decided to forgo watching the morning individual and team competition in person and wander around the vendor village instead.

The kids flexed their muscles…

…while I flexed my wallet.

Just like the day before, we visited our friends at the Steve’s Original stand, where I stuffed my bag with snacks.

Next, we hit the Trigger Point Performance Therapy tent to check out the various rollers available to soothe Fitbomb's aching achilles tendon.

Big-O eagerly rolled out his tiny calves…

…while Lil-O chose to use the rollers as building blocks.

It’s good to know that the new set we bought will be used by the whole family, albeit in completely different ways.

When lunchtime rolled around, we queued up in a long line to order “Paleo Caveman” bowls and sweet potato fries from The Green Truck


The Paleo bowl consisted of sautéed kale and summer squash topped with a few slices of grass fed beef and a green goddess sauce. Sadly, the bowl was teeny-tiny and the beef was overcooked.

As soon as I saw the paltry portion sizes, I knew our lunch wouldn’t come close to filling our bellies. I ran over to the Paleo Wagon and ordered a carne asada platter that came with a pile of beef, half an avocado, cucumber, baked sweet potatoes, and a low-calorie quercetin-supplemented energy drink (which I declined to imbibe).

Between the two trucks, I preferred the heartier meal from the Paleo Wagon…

…but the sweet potato fries from The Green Truck were crispy and well seasoned.

We enjoyed our lunch on a grassy, shaded spot next to the vendors with our buddies George, Diane, Bill, and Hayley. Diane broke out her very first copy of Practical Paleo (hot off the presses!) and passed it around for us to ooh and aah over.

I can’t wait to get my own copy because this book is awesome — over 400 pages of super-helpful information, beautiful photos, simple recipes, and cool tear-out guides. This book is the total package.

While we were relaxing in the shade, I finally met the adorable, sweet, and ripped Mee Lee — maker of the addictive MeeNut Butter.

Mee is incredibly sweet and doesn’t have her mind in the gutter like yours truly. When she asked us to flash The Shaka in our group photo, I initially thought she meant The Shocker. 

After lunch, we wandered around the vendor village some more. We stopped by Steve’s Originals AGAIN…

…because PaleoKrunch is crack, I tell ya!

Then, I walked over to sample some snacks I’ve been dying to try, specifically, Paleo Ahi Jerky

…and Paleo Treats.

And, yes, they were soooo good.

The kids and I spent the rest of the afternoon on a couch in the air-conditioned tent watching the individual clean ladder competition on the flat screens…

…while the hubby went to the stadium to spectate and take pictures.

Meanwhile, we bumped into Coach Trish, who is working tirelessly as a volunteer here at the Games.

One of the best things about being here at the Games has been running into old and new friends. It’s been fun connecting with readers of my blog and chatting with folks who influenced me to turn Paleo in the first place, like Mark Sisson

Jen Cereghino

…and Sarah Fragoso.

At six o’clock, we finally made our way to the stadium to watch the individual events. Needless to say, I was shocked and awed by these athletes.

When the final men’s individual heat finished, we were all tired and hungry. After a quick Yelp search, I found a place called Chicken Maison that serves up fast Mediterranean food.

We caravanned over there with S & B to get dinner and ordered the Kabob Feast which is an assortment of meaty kabobs and four side dishes. I don’t have any pictures of the food because they literally didn’t allow us to eat in the restaurant. We ordered at the counter at 8:45 p.m. and sat down to await our food. Fifteen minutes later, they brought us our food in takeout containers(!) and told us they were closing, and that we had to leave immediately. Look — I totally understand that tired restaurant workers don’t want to stick around and wait for customers to finish eating before closing up, but if they’d only told us when we were ordering that they closed at 9 and our eat-in order would be converted into a take-out meal, we could’ve opted to dine elsewhere.

After we were kicked out of the place with our take-out dinner, we drove back to the hotel and the kids had a picnic on the floor and the adults ate the kabobs caveman-style with our hands.

And with that, we dunked our kids in the bath, tucked ‘em in bed, and stayed up for hours to blog in the dark. Fun!

Paleo Eats: 7/13/12 (2012 CrossFit Games Day 1)

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Our day started bright and early because the Nombomb clan was excited to root for our favorite athletes on the first day of the 2012 CrossFit Games.

Although we were up by 7, we didn’t arrive at Home Depot Center (HDC) until close to noon. Why the delay? Well, food takes precedence over everything in my world, and I needed to pack some Paleo-friendly fare (roast beef, veggies, guacamole, nuts, beef jerky, dried fruit, applesauce, and water) for our day at the Games.

And then, of course, we had to chow down on a big, hearty breakfast. I wanted to makes sure no one — especially me — would be hangry and cranky in the afternoon.

I did my due diligence on Yelp and Chowhound and decided that we were going to break our fast at Eat At Rudy’s in downtown Torrance.

The Double-Os split an order of two scrambled eggs, bacon, and cubed watermelon.

My hubby and I split the chorizo scramble with added avocado….

…and an avocado-topped three-egg omelet stuffed with seasoned ground beef, spinach, and mushrooms.

When in doubt about eating out Paleo, go chow at a breakfast joint because you can always fill up on eggs and breakfast meats. 

By the time we arrived at HDC, the parking lot was crammed with cars to the outer perimeter. Fantastic.

As we inched our way to the stadium, I couldn’t help noticing all of the Paleo-friendly food stands available at the venue. Last year, Fitbomb spied a lonely Cinnabon vendor trying unsuccessfully to hawk sugary gluten bombs to the fans, along with a couple of food trucks (including one from In-N-Out). This year, there were long lines at every stand except for the one where a lady was selling ice cream, soda, and peanuts.

I’m pretty sure I won’t need to lug a ton of food with me to the HDC tomorrow.

After moseying around the vendor area…

…and saying hello to our pals at Steve’s Originals

…we made our way to the track and field area where the med-ball toss and track triplet were already underway. We got to see some of my favorite female CrossFit Games athletes like Kristan Clever, Julie Foucher, Annie Sakamoto, and Jenny Labaw…

…and on the men’s side, the crowd was treated to a photo finish between Graham Holmberg and Chris Spealler.

It was amazing to get to watch these athletes compete.

While we whooped and hollered under the hot sun, I assembled lettuce tacos filled with roast beef, guacamole, and grape tomatoes and shoved them in everyone’s mouths.

It was great watching the events with our boys because many of the athletes demonstrated relentless persistence, a trait we stress more than any other with our kids. I pointed out to the Double-Os that even though Jenny Labaw struggled to bust out her bar muscle-ups, she continued to gut it out even after the other competitors had finished.

That’s why I’m such a big fan of hers.

The Double-Os enjoyed the Games — for about an hour — and then the unrelenting heat and humidity made them melt.

We left the track and cooled down a bit in the shade of a tent…

…and then made one last detour through the vendor village. My hubby and I picked up a pair of his-‘n-hers new RX Jump Ropes (which came highly recommended by George)…

…and Big-O hurled a sandbell like an angry monkey chucking his scat.

[Photo: Bill Staley]

One last photo op with our Paleo blogger pals later…

…we headed out. After returning to our hotel, we dunked the sweaty boys in a sudsy tub before grabbing dinner at Fanoos Grill.

The little guys split a koobideh platter…

…and my hubby and I split the combo grill for two. From the photos on Yelp, I knew that the grilled meats are plated on fresh lavosh and accompanied by a mountain of saffron-flavored basamati rice. I didn’t want either, so I just ordered a pile o’meat and undressed salad.

I love Persian food and this casual joint is a winner in my book.

Once our bellies were full, I dropped Fitbomb back at HDC to watch the evening individual events.

While my hubby busied himself snapping photos, the Double-Os and I headed back to our hotel for some R&R. (You can check out more of Fitbomb’s pics here.) We can’t wait to return tomorrow!

Paleo Eats: 8/1/11

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Wait a minute! It’s August already? Yikes, summer’s almost over…

I got the munchies early at work and ended up chowing on my first packed meal a couple hours into my shift. I ate leftover sous vide flank steak, roasted Portobello mushrooms, and roasted bell peppers

I was STILL hungry (just like a certain hungry caterpillar) so I munched on a small container of coconut flakes, too. Luckily, my eats these days don’t give me a tummy ache or turn me into a big fat caterpillar anymore.

At the end of my nightshift, I ate leftover braised chicken with artichokes and pearl onions with sautéed spinach.

When I got home, I filled and heated my Sousvide Supreme to 130F and dunked in the remaining pre-cooked grass fed flank steak.

When we ate the other sous vide flank steak for dinner the other night, it was still too chewy after 24 hours in the water oven. My father-in-law was eating dinner with us tonight, so I wanted to add an extra 8 hours of soaking time to ensure that he wouldn’t be choking down the beef like last time

Then, I packed Big-O’s lunch for camp and hit the sheets.

In the evening, I threw a tray of broccoli and bacon in the oven and stir-fried a batch of Asian cauliflower fried rice.

While I was cooking dinner, Fitbomb came home (Yay!) bearing gifts for everyone (Double Yay!). 

I received a bunch of cute shirts and socks but my FAVORITE T’s were from Joe Petrusky at CrossFit Love and Jen Cereghino of CrossFit Oregon City. Thank you, darlings! Let’s meet next year at The Games!

Hubby also brought back some edible gifts from my incredible chef-sis and her smoker-extraordinaire-gentleman-farmer husband: a batch of savory homemade Paleo crackers (recipe coming soon)…

…and yummerific smoked turkey thighs!

I normally HATE turkey but these smoked thighs are always so AMAZINGLY delicious.

After I finished ooohing and aaahing at my presents, I seared off the flank steak…

…scooped up the Asian cauliflower fried rice

…plated up the roasted broccoli and bacon

…and sliced up the steak.

Here’s my dinner plate:

The steak was definitely better tonight (i.e. more tender and less chewy) with the extra eight hours of sous viding! My father-in-law even helped himself to seconds! 

After dinner, I practiced double-unders and pistols (holding on to our TRX rings) and assembled my stuff for work. 

While I was packing my meals, I found out that Bill and Hayley, the cuties over at The Food Lovers’ Primal Palate have a gorgeous cookbook coming out in October!

I can’t wait to get Make It Paleo, Paleo Comfort Foods, and Melicious's awesome cookbook this fall/winter! I’m even more excited that I’ll meet these fine folks this weekend at The Ancestral Health Symposium! I’m such a Paleo geek…

Paleo Eats: 7/29/11

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Night two of work…

I wasn’t super hungry at the hospital, so I snacked on Fitbomb’s homemade jerky and some coconut flakes at 2:00 a.m. If you can’t wait for his new Paleo-approved jerky recipe, here’s his old one.

Before leaving for home, I ate some leftover sous vide Turkish slider burgers and stir-fried zucchini and mushrooms.

At home, my boys and I watched the CrossFit Games on the computer and we even had a chance to  play a few rounds of “Where’s Fitbomb?” before I drove Big-O to camp. I was the big winner because I spotted my hubby twice! I miss Fitbomb like the dickens but I know he’s having a ball at the Games. Plus, I feel close to him when I read his tweets.

When I woke up in the evening, I plopped a pre-cooked flank steak into the SousVide Supreme to reheat, clicked on ESPN3’s coverage of the CrossFit Games, and prepared the rest of dinner.

I washed a head butter lettuce, chopped up some tomatoes, sautéed some onions in ghee, whipped up a batch of homemade guacamole

…roasted some Portobello mushrooms

…and charred some bell peppers on the stovetop.

When I was done with the veggies…

…I torched the flank steak and topped the meat with the caramelized onions.

I set everything on the kitchen counter and everyone assembled their own lettuce-wrapped steak tacos.

Here’s my plate:

After dinner, I put my little guys to bed, packed my meals, and practiced double-unders. Then, it was off to work again.

Just one more week until the Ancestral Health Symposium! I’m sooooo excited to attend and meet some of my favorite Paleo peeps!