Nom Nom Paleo

Paleo Eats: 2/16/11

Pin It

In the past 24 hours, I’ve slept only two hours. It’s normal for me to be sleep-deprived every other Wednesday (the day I flip back to being diurnal), but today was worse than usual. I had a post-shift meeting to attend — and then Big-O had a medical emergency this morning (he’s fine now, by the way), so I ended up staying at the hospital for fifteen hours straight (10 hours of work + 1-hour meeting + 4 hours in the ED) instead of my regular ten. It therefore goes without saying that this post will be short and sweet. Well, maybe a bit sour, too, due to lack of sleep.

At work (pre-medical drama), I ate a ton of packed grub. First up was a box of leftover sous vide pork chops wrapped in bacon, nuked frozen green beans, and sautéed baby chard with shiitake mushrooms and bacon.

As a snack, I threw down some berries with chilled coconut milk

…and a handful of macadamia nuts and coconut flakes.

My last meal at work was a container of Asian ground beef and cauliflower fried “rice.”

After the ordeal in the ED was over, I groggily drove home with Big-O. I was starving, so I devoured some melted coconut butter and macadamia nuts before knocking out for an all-too-brief two-hour nap.

When I woke up, I hopped in the car to go pick up my monthly meat CSA box. I recently upgraded to Marin Sun Farm’s package #2, so we now receive seventeen pounds of meat per month, which is kind of awesome. I filled up our new chest freezer with four T-bone steaks, two stewing hens, a boneless pork shoulder roast, pork spare ribs, three pounds of ground beef, a pound each of ground pork and lamb, and a partridge in a pear tree.

Now I just have to remember to defrost the meat in time for dinner…

Since I was tired and both of my kids were couch-ridden due to illness, we all just vegged out and stared at Scooby-Doo on the TV until my hubby came home from work. I’m telling you, watching the Mystery Inc. gang can be soul healing.

Dinner was super-quick and easy. I sautéed some tatsoi rabe in ghee with some chicken broth…

…and served it with Italian sausage and a fried egg (sprinkled with Fines Herbes).

Good night!

Quick Lamb Burgers Topped With Fried Egg and Sautéed Shiitake Mushrooms and Onions

Pin It

There’s nothing I like more than waking up in the evening to the delicious aroma of seared meat. (For all you newbies, I’m not sleeping away the day because I’m lazy or depressed — I’m a shift worker.) Today was my lucky day: not only did my hubby entertain the kids all day, he also made dinner! I’m telling you, when someone else makes dinner, the food takes on a mysterious, MSG-like, flavor-enhancing quality.

What was on the menu? Butter-lettuce wrapped grass fed New Zealand lamb burgers topped with a fried egg, homemade guacamole, sautéed mushrooms and onions — with roasted carrot fries on the side. As an added bonus, dinner was on the table in around 30 minutes, which was just enough time for me to do a quick metcon workout (lots and lots of burpees!) while the kids caught an episode of Scooby Doo on the boob tube.

Here’s what the husband assembled for dinner:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 frozen grass fed lamb patties
  • 1 large avocado
  • ½ pound of shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ onion, thinly sliced
  • 8 leaves of butter lettuce (I like using Live Gourmet brand with the roots attached. The heads stay fresher longer and are grown pesticide-free)
  • Handful of shredded carrots (optional garnish)
  • 5 or 6 carrots
  • Coconut oil and/or avocado oil
  • Kosher Salt
  • Freshly Ground Pepper

Here’s how he made the burgers:

Earlier in the day, the boys hit Whole Foods and stocked up on Atkins Ranch New Zealand frozen lamb patties (which happened to be on sale — $4.99 for each package of two patties).

When they returned from the store, Mr. Mom put a two-pack in the fridge to defrost and put the rest in the freezer. If you forget to defrost them, you can take the patties straight from the freezer and use the defrost function on the microwave to thaw them. (But be careful defrosting meat in the microwave because if you’re not watching it like a hawk, you’ll end up cooking part of it.)

About an hour before he started making dinner, he took the patties out of the fridge and seasoned them liberally with salt and pepper.

Per Thomas Keller, you should always bring your meat up to cool room temperature before cooking to get the best results. But don’t be dumb and leave it at room temp for half a day or your meat’ll become a veritable petri dish of badness.

At around 5:00 p.m., hubs prepped his veggies and popped a tray of carrot “French fries” tossed with avocado oil, salt, and pepper into the toaster oven (400 F for about 25 minutes).

Then, he made some guacamole by simply smashing up the avocado with some salt and pepper. Personally, I like to add a squirt of lemon or lime juice but I swear I’m not looking a gift horse in the mouth!

Next, hubby heated a heaping tablespoon of coconut oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat and sautéed the onions until they were translucent. He added the sliced shiitake mushrooms along with some salt and pepper and sautéed everything until all the liquid had evaporated.

At the end, he tossed in the minced garlic and stirred the veggies around for about 30 more seconds. If you toss the garlic in earlier, you’ll burn it — and burnt garlic adds a yucky metallic taste to everything.

Once the mushrooms and onions were finished, he rinsed and dried out the skillet, added another dollop of coconut oil and set it over medium-high heat. When the oil was shimmering, he added the lamb patties to the pan.

He seared them for about 4 minutes on each side and checked that the internal temperature was ~ 145 F with our handy-dandy meat thermometer.

Finally, he rinsed the skillet again before frying a couple of eggs in some melted coconut oil.

He plated the burgers over the butter lettuce and topped ‘em with sliced tomato, fried egg, shredded carrots, guacamole, and sautéed mushrooms and onions. By this time, the roasted carrot fries were finished…

…so we sat down and scarfed down dinner.

Bun-less burgers can be pretty messy to eat, so I ate mine with a fork and knife since I’m a cavegirl with good manners. My husband, however, didn’t seem to mind the meat juices running down his hands and forearms as he devoured his burger.

These Paleo lamb burgers were fan-effing-tastic. Cavemen, make this meal for that special someone in your life and I promise that the 30 minutes you spend will be repaid in sex. Er, I mean spades.

Stir Fried Kelp Noodles Made With The Dregs From My Fridge

Pin It

Tonight, I decided to make stir fried kelp noodles again. Why? Because I’m at the end of my 7-night shift work week and I’m too damn tired to come up with something original and Whole30 approved. For this variation I added some anchovy fillets to fill the void left by the lack of fish sauce and some homemade chicken broth to help soften the kelp noodles faster.

(Yep, you read that right. I made my chicken broth from scratch using the bones I removed from the crispy sous vide chicken thighs a few nights ago. On my work week. Tells you how easy it is and how I should stop being so effing lazy).

For all stir fries, I just look in my fridge and pick some aromatics (shallots and garlic), a protein or two (eggs and ground pork), and some veggies that are wilting (broccoli slaw, shredded carrots, pre-washed baby spinach). Once everything is prepped and cut, you just sequentially throw it in your pan and you’re done. Dinner can be on the table in 30 minutes.

Here’s what I assembled for tonight’s dish:

  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 large shallots, minced in mini prep food processor
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 anchovy fillets packed in olive oil
  • 1 pound of ground pork
  • 1 package of kelp noodles, rinsed and drained
  • 6 ounce package of prewashed baby spinach
  • 1 cup of broccoli slaw
  • 1 cup of shredded carrots
  • 2-4 tablespoons of coconut aminos
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut vinegar
  • ¼ cup of chicken broth
  • 2-3 tablespoons of macadamia nut oil

Here’s how I got dinner on the table:

The first thing I did was make a thin scrambled egg omelet. I heated a tablespoon of macadamia nut oil in my 12-inch cast iron skillet on medium high and whisked the eggs with some salt and pepper. Once the pan was hot, I poured in the eggs making sure it was a uniform layer and turned the heat down to low.

Once the bottom set, I flipped it over with a spatula. I tore the omelet but I didn’t care because I ended up cutting it into strips.

Then, I added another tablespoon of macadamia nut oil to the pan and sautéed the shallots. When the shallots were softened, I threw in the anchovies and broke it up with my wooden spoon.

I added the pork and garlic, seasoned with some salt and pepper, and cooked the meat until it was no longer pink.

I added the kelp noodles (which I cut with some scissors) and chicken broth.

Then I seasoned everything with the coconut aminos and vinegar and covered the pan for about 5 minutes to soften the kelp noodles.

Once the noodles were soft, I added the broccoli slaw and shredded carrots and mixed that around.

Next, I threw in the baby spinach with some additional salt and pepper and stir fried until the leaves were wilted.

At the very end, I tossed in the sliced egg omelet.

Voila!

As a veggie side, I roasted some cauliflower seasoned with Dukka seasoning, Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and thinly sliced shallots (400 F set at convection roast, 15 minutes covered and 15 minutes uncovered).

Here’s my plate.

The rest of the family also enjoyed some pork butt braised in Coca Cola and soy sauce that my mother-in-law brought over but I stuck to my guns and ate what I had prepared.

Not too shabby for a quick, well-rounded dish. I still missed the sweetness from fish sauce and/or oyster sauce but I’ll just deal with it for the next 23 days. Maybe next time I’ll add some red pepper flakes or chilis in place of the Sriracha I can’t use either.

Lunch at work: a yummy salad made by my hubby. Since I’m on the Whole30 program, I requested (with a smile) no nuts, cheese, or bacon. Hubby frowned but complied. He made me a salad with mixed organic greens, shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, sliced cucumbers, cubed avocados, diced sous vide chicken breast, and sliced hard boiled egg. Even though this was mighty tasty, I still had a hankering for some more fat so I scarfed down a half cup of unsweetened coconut flakes. Okay, now I’m all good.

Lunch at work: a yummy salad made by my hubby. Since I’m on the Whole30 program, I requested (with a smile) no nuts, cheese, or bacon. Hubby frowned but complied. He made me a salad with mixed organic greens, shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, sliced cucumbers, cubed avocados, diced sous vide chicken breast, and sliced hard boiled egg. Even though this was mighty tasty, I still had a hankering for some more fat so I scarfed down a half cup of unsweetened coconut flakes. Okay, now I’m all good.

Start of the Whole30 Program…

Pin It

Today is the day I start the Whole30 Program. Yes, it can seem restrictive to many people but I already basically eat this way except that I’ve been nipping at dark chocolate, nuts, and coconut flakes ALL THE TIME. Plus, I want to see what happens if I don’t eat dairy (except for occasional ghee) and processed meats (e.g. sausage, prosciutto, bacon, etc.) for 30 days. I’m sure I won’t be 100% compliant (see below) but I’m gonna do my best.

For breakfast, I fried up three scrambled eggs in macadamia nut oil and nuked up some leftover stovetop cabbage.

Yes, the cabbage was sautéed in ghee but since it was from grass fed cows, it should cause little intolerance. And ghee tastes good.

For lunch, we hit up our go-to brunch place, Rick’s Café. It’s a bit harder maneuvering the menu when you’re on the Whole30. Since dairy and processed meats are verboten on Whole30  I opted to order an Alfredo omelet (omelet filled with grilled chicken breast, onions, and mushrooms topped with Alfredo sauce) without the sauce and I subbed in a salad and fruit cup in place of potatoes and bagel.

I was a troublesome customer. This tasted okay – kind of dry and plain. Surprise, surprise. Plus, the salad came tossed with a sugar-filled dressing so I didn’t eat it. Fitbomb felt sorry for me and shared some of his Cobb Salad with me.

I ate some bacon and it tasted good.

Frittata With Leftover Tabil-Spiced Pork, Spinach, and Tomatoes

Pin It

This morning I threw together a frittata with some leftovers and a couple wrinkly tomatoes on the counter.

After I whipped up three eggs with some salt and pepper, I heated some coconut oil in my little cast iron skillet over medium heat. I added about a cup of leftover Tabil-spiced pork and spinach and sautéed for about a minute until it was warmed through.

Then, I added some diced tomatoes and stirred that around for an additional minute.

I added the three eggs and let the bottom of the frittata set for a few minutes.

I popped the skillet in my toaster oven and broiled the frittata for ~10 minutes.

The middle was set and the edges were puffed and browned.

I split the frittata with Fitbomb and served it up with some nuked frozen broccoli.

I originally thought Fitbomb broke his fast because my breakfast was just too tempting to pass up but then I found out he had an ass-kicking WOD this morning.

Eggs & Veggies for Breakfast

Pin It

I’m so glad I started eating breakfast again. I’m much happier, calmer, and patient in the mornings now. Intermittent fasting be damned.

This morning I scrambled up three eggs in pork grease and topped them with Primavera salsa and sliced avocado. I also nuked some frozen broccoli to eat with it.

At around 10:00 a.m., my stomach started rumbling so I snacked on Fitbomb’s fabulous homemade jerky. It may be a while before I attempt intermittent fasting again.

Easy Paleo Frittata

Pin It

You can essentially turn any leftover meat into a frittata.  All you do is dice up the meat, chop up some veggies (frozen veggies are perfect), sauté them in an oven-safe skillet, add some eggs and dairy/coconut milk, and pop it all in the oven until it sets.  You can add herbs, sautéed onion, minced garlic, whatever! You can decide how fancy you wanna be. 

Here’s just one example of how you can throw together a simple frittata.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil or fat of choice
  • 1 cup emergency protein (whatever cooked meat you have on hand)
  • 1 cup frozen broccoli (or any leftover or frozen veggies)
  • 4 large pastured eggs
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly-ground black pepper

First, preheat the toaster oven to 350°F and heat the coconut oil in an 8-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat. Then, add whatever protein you have on hand (here, I used some leftover spicy lamb merguez sausage and onions) to the skillet and stir-fry until heated through.

Meanwhile, place the frozen broccoli in a medium microwave-safe bowl, cover it with a wet paper towel and nuke it until it’s thawed. Use a pair of kitchen shears or a knife to cut the broccoli into bite-sized pieces.

Add the broccoli to the ingredients in the pan and mix to cook thoroughly.

Crack the eggs into a medium bowl, and add the coconut milk, salt, and a few grinds of pepper.

Pour the egg mixture into the skillet and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until the bottom of the frittata is set.

Place the skillet in the oven. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, and then crank the heat up to broil for another 2 minutes or until the frittata puffs up and is cooked all the way through.

Carefully transfer the frittata to a plate, slice, and serve.

The frittata is delicious cold so it’s perfect for leftovers!