Nom Nom Paleo

Paleo Eats: 6/13/12

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Today was another Flip Day, which meant I had tons to accomplish before starting my week of graveyard shifts at the hospital. A lot of prep goes into transforming into a creature of the night.

As soon as I rolled out of bed, I gobbled up a pre-workout meal of scrambled eggs and macadamia nuts (fat and protein!) before heading to the women’s class at CrossFit Palo Alto.

At the box, I worked on my front squats and struggled through Annie. Post-WOD, it was crystal clear to me that I need to practice Abmat sit-ups and double-unders at home. I need to practice A LOT.

After staggering into my car, I immediately inhaled half a roasted yam and a few slices of roast beef to refuel. If you’ve got ANY questions about peri-workout nutrition, get yourself a copy of Dallas and Melissa Hartwig’s It Starts With Food. As I’ve mentioned before, this newly-released tome is my go-to reference for all things related to nutrition. Even my decidedly non-Paleo mom’s reading it!

I spent the rest of the morning with the Double-Os at the public library tracking down spooky books on paranormal activity. Big-O has decided that his new career goal is to be a ghostbuster. My little man loves creepy stuff. I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree — I used to scan the obits for fun when I was his age.

At noon, we met my parents for lunch at Jin Sho.

We used to visit Jin Sho regularly, but I hadn’t been back to this popular Japanese eatery in ages ‘cause it’s a tricky spot to navigate while eating Paleo. Why does there have to be so much soy and sugar in Asian food? 

I ended up ordering a seaweed salad, which was tossed with a miso dressing (gasp!)…

…and a sashimi platter.

Just as I remembered, this place still serves up incredibly fresh and meticulously prepared food.

After conking out for a few hours, I zoomed back to our house to cook up some vegetables and meat for dinner.

First, I roasted trays of broccoli and kabocha squash in the oven.

Then, I fried up mini sliders…

…and stir-fried sliced portobellos and spinach in the burger drippings.

By the time the stuff on the stovetop was finished cooking, so were the roasted veggies.

Here’s my dinner plate:

After two months of living out of suitcases, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel: The floors in our house are FINALLY being repaired, and with any luck, we’ll be able to move back home by the end of the month. However, with construction underway, my kitchen will be officially off-limits in a few days, and I’m already dreading it. On the one hand, I’m stoked that our floors are getting fixed, but I can’t stand cooking in our ill-equipped hotel kitchen. Can someone please make this month go by faster?

Paleo Eats: 6/11/12 

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Hello, folks!

I’m back home, and once again photographing all of my daily chow. Believe me — I desperately needed to take a break from documenting every bite that passes my lips. It’s important to remember that food really does taste better when it’s piping hot.

This morning, I didn’t have a chance to eat anything before my hubby dropped me off at the women’s class at CrossFit Palo Alto. I kinda dread going to class, but only ‘cause I know I’m bound to be bringing up the rear in the WOD. That being said, at the end of the hour, I’m ALWAYS happy I dragged my lazy keister to the box. Coach Trish never lets me give up and pushes me to do more than I think I can. She is the best coach EVAH.

After I powered through the workout (snatches and squats and burpees — oh my!), I drove home to gulp down my post-workout meal. I cracked open a can of pumpkin puree that I seasoned with cinnamon and gulped it down with some leftover slices of sous vide steak.

According to Dallas and Melissa, every post-workout “bonus meal” should consist of a meal-size serving of protein plus carbs in the form of starchy veggies. ANY QUESTION you have about what to put on your plate in ANY SITUATION is answered in their new book, It Starts With Food. The book’s so awesome I keep it in my bag to whip out whenever anyone asks me questions about the Paleo diet. Seriously.

At lunchtime, we headed to Asian Box (again) and ate outdoors to soak up the rays.

I ordered my usual box of double pork served over undressed Asian salad, steamed veggies, herbs, pickled veggies, lime, caramel egg, and sriracha sauce.

The food was tasty, but the real reason I have a big grin on my face is because I didn’t have to cook.

It was blazingly hot in our neck of the woods, so the Double-Os and I spent a lazy afternoon in a chilly theater watching Madagascar 3. I melt in hot weather and do whatever I can to keep myself in a solid form.

In the afternoon, I snacked on a package of Jungle Jerky (from Asian Box), along with a handful of unsalted roasted macadamia nuts and a few squares of dark chocolate.

After picking up Big-O from his swim camp, we stopped by the new Sancho’s Taqueria location that just opened its doors in Midtown Palo Alto. I’ve been waiting impatiently for the grand opening, checking almost every day, and as I drove past this afternoon, I finally saw the glowing red neon “OPEN” sign.

The menu is nearly identical to that of Sancho’s other restaurants, but there are a few extra items that appear to be exclusive to this location. Also, this spot has plenty of seating in the back — a luxury not found downtown. 

Despite the new location, my hubby and I ordered our usual: house salads topped with extra guacamole, shrimp, and carne asada.

Sancho’s has a well-stocked salsa bar where I ladled up a cup of spicy salsa to drizzle on top.

The boys didn’t deviate from their normal Sancho’s order either. They shared a side of carnitas and guacamole.

I’m super excited that we’ve got a great Mexican joint in our nabe. Finally.

Paleo Eats: 2/8/12

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I started my night shifts tonight so I was busy, busy, busy in the morning and afternoon.

Before I headed to the women’s class at CrossFit Palo Alto, I slurped up a bowl of beefy bone broth and gobbled up a scrambled egg.

I also placed the two remaining seasoned beef back ribs into the oven to slow roast for eight hours.

It was my one year anniversary at the box and I had a fun time with the other gals tackling Nicole. I caught Coach Trish stifling a giggle as she watched me struggle with ring dips and she commented that I only make two facial expressions when I exercise: a big ass grin or an anguished grimace. That pretty much sums up how I feel about CrossFit — I love how it kicks my booty.

Afterwards, I chowed on some Just Jerky and a handful of roasted chestnuts while I trolled the aisles of Trader Joe’s to restock my pantry and fridge. (Someone asked me a while back to list what I buy at Trader Joe’s so here you go: organic sweet potatoes, organic chicken thighs, bags of prepped kale, grass fed butter, prepped leeks, organic carrots, organic bell peppers, mushrooms, mandarins, apples, and frozen broccoli.)

At lunchtime, I reheated a bunch of Magic Wings and sauteed baby spinach and shallots.

I picked up Big-O from school and came home and took a short nap in the afternoon.

In the evening, I removed the ribs from the oven

…sauteed some mushrooms with Red Boat fish sauce and coconut aminos

…and braised kale and carrots in the pressure cooker.

When the veggies were finished, I popped the racks under the broiler to give them a nice char.

Here’s my dinner plate:

Although the pressure cooked ribs from last night were tasty and tender at the bone, the slow-roasted ones were slightly better — they were meatier and even more tender. In the future, I’m gonna use both methods to cook beef back ribs but it’ll all depend on how much time I have. So, in other words, I’ll probably end up cooking them in my pressure cooker.

Paleo Eats: 1/9/12 (Whole30 Day 9)

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Day 9 on the Whole30 coming right atcha!

This morning, I had a date with Helen at my CrossFit Palo Alto womens’ class so I inhaled half an Asian-style Scotch egg (from Well Fed), a black espresso…

…and a shot glass of coconut cream before heading out.

I always know the workout ahead of time because my nutjob husband goes to the 5:00 a.m. class and I extract a report from him as soon as he returns. I have ways of making him talk. Mwahahaha.

Before I left the house, I popped the duck legs I marinated a couple of days ago into the oven to slow roast for 2.5 hours.

When I came home from the box, I gobbled up two spicy tuna cakes and a small Clementine tangerine.

I checked in on the duck legs…

…and the skin was crispy on the outside and the meat was moist and tender.

I can’t wait to eat these later this week.

Afterwards, Fitbomb and I spent the rest of the morning at a meeting with a couple folks about our side project. I’ll likely be announcing it within the next few weeks. We’re hopeful it’ll be ready by the time we head to Austin for the PaleoFX Ancestral Momentum -Theory to Practice Symposium.

At lunchtime, I ate several slices of leftover slow roasted Dukka crusted leg of lamb and roasted Brussels sprouts.

In the afternoon, I whipped together a Waldorf Tuna Salad from Melicious’s Well Fed

…and made a blood orange vinaigrette…

…that I drizzled on a big bowl of raw kale leaves. Raw kale holds up like a champ when dressed ahead of time. In fact, it tastes even better if you eat it later.

Big-O had a late wushu class and when we got home at dark o’clock I was happy that I’d made food earlier. Dinner was on the table pronto because I just piled the kale salad in a bowl and topped it with the tuna salad.

My last bite for the night was another shot glass filled with the remaining coconut cream in the fridge.

Since I’m starting another night shift work week on Wednesday and need some pre-made grub, I threw together a Cheater Brisket, Kale, and Root Vegetable Stew that I popped in the slow cooker to cook overnight.

I’m looking forward to waking up to the comforting smell of beef stew in the morning.

Paleo Eats: 1/6/12 (Whole30 Day 6)

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Last night I dreamt that I downed a tall, frosty glass of sweet and creamy chocolate milk. Needless to say, I woke up screaming. 

For breakfast, I fueled up with a black espresso, a couple of scrambled eggs, and sliced avocado before heading to the womens’ class at CrossFit Palo Alto.

I was wiped out after the chipper and nourished myself with some carbs and protein: a nuked yam, hard boiled egg, and leftover burger bites.

I had some free time in the afternoon, so I cooked some greens and protein to restock the fridge. I consulted with my well-loved copy of Well Fed on the kitchen counter and baked a batch of Melicious’s Asian-style Scotch eggs.

In addition, my chef sis recently emailed me a recipe for pressure cooker braised spicy kale that looked too simple and tasty to pass up. 

After just 8 minutes of high pressure cooking, I had a big mound of tender carrots and greens (and stems, too!).

At lunchtime, I ate a Scotch egg…

…slurped down the spicy pot liquor from the braised kale…

…and a bowl of leftover Welsh beef stew.

In the afternoon, I snacked on a handful of coconut flakes, a Clementine tangerine, and some leftover roasted vegetables from the fridge.

Dinner prep was easy. I used the pressure cooker again — because I love it — to whip up a cauliflower and leek puree in just 6 minutes under high pressure.

My old and unsexy pressure cooker is looking reeeal fine these days. Baby, baby fallin’ in love, I’m fallin’ in love again…

I removed the sous vide short ribs from the water oven (48 hours at 140°F) and blasted them with my kitchen torch.

The marbled meat was melt-in-your mouth tender, yet still pink.

Yowza.

I plated everything up, along with last night’s stir-fried bok choy and mushrooms, for a super-satiating winter meal.

I’m one-fifth of the way through the Whole30 and I feel great. Anyone worried about getting derailed this weekend?