We all woke up late and I was whirling around the kitchen, Tasmanian-devil-style, fixing breakfast and lunches for the Double-Os. For the boys’ first meal of the day, I made omelets filled with leftover sautéed mushrooms using my new cast iron griddle. (I first encountered one of these when I almost set Diana’s Colonial-era farmhouse on fire, and have wanted one ever since.)

As expected, Big-O wolfed down his omelet while my younger son turned up his nose and picked around the filling. If I hadn’t witnessed Lil-O being yanked out of me, I wouldn’t believe he’s my son.

Once the dust had settled and the boys were safely deposited at school, I was finally able to make myself a simple plate of scrambled eggs and fresh heirloom tomatoes. 

Later in the morning, I drove up to San Francisco to meet Henry and a friend at Il Cane Rosso in the Ferry Building – the city’s ultimate high-end food court – for lunch. I love that Il Cane Rosso offers simple preparations of pastured meats and organic vegetables – and I love being able to sit and eat while people-watching. It’s fun spying out-of-towners geeking out (and/or scratching their heads) at the orgy of gourmet food surrounding them.

Most dishes at Il Cane Rosso are less than Paleo, but you can ask ‘em to hold the bread on the sandwiches and the server will happily oblige.

I ordered the Dirty Girl Farm Romaine BLT salad and added roast chicken and avocado to up the protein and fat quotient. (A little bacon can go a long way, but it’s not enough to satisfy this hungry girl.)

Henry got the special of the day: Marin Sun Farms beef stew with herb salad.

The special was supposed to come with a hunk of garlic bread, but he asked to sub it out for Il Cane Rosso’s sweet ‘n sour housemade pickles.

Once lunch was over, we zoomed through the Ferry Building on a mission to buy a big pork shoulder roast for Slow Cooker Kalua Pig. I struck out at Prather Ranch (d’oh!) and ended purchasing it from the friendly butchers at Golden Gate Meats.

If I’d had my way, I would’ve spent all afternoon meandering through the different specialty shops, but I had to pick up the Double-Os from school. It’s true – children ruin everything. (If I have to tell you I’m kidding, you must be new here. Welcome, and please be sure to try my recipe for Virgin Boy Eggs.)

By the time the sun started drooping from its perch in the sky, I, too, was slumping over with exhaustion. I would’ve marched everyone out to a restaurant if my aversion of Friday night crowds didn’t override my laziness.

What’s a tired mommy to do?

EMERGENCY PROTEIN, baby – in the form of sliders and veggies sautéed in the burger drippings.

I grabbed two pounds of ground beef from the defrost bowl in my fridge…

…seasoned the meat with Penzeys Greek Seasoning and kosher salt…

…formed them into patties…

…and fried them in melted coconut oil.

Two pounds of meat yield more sliders than we can eat in a meal, but this way, I’ll have lots of extra emergency protein available in the fridge. Besides, if I’m gonna get my skillet dirty, I’m gonna make it worth my while.

While the burgers were cooking on the stove, I sliced up half an onion…

…and chopped up a small purple cabbage.

I always sharpen my knife with my cheap-o (but effective) Accu-Sharp so I can slice and dice like a nimble kitchen ninja. Remember: your veggies will cook faster if they’re smaller. I’m all about the shortcuts.

Once the burgers were crunchy on the outside and pink on the inside…

…I transferred them to a platter…

…and dumped in the onions…

… and cabbage (with a dash of apple cider vinegar).

Here’s my dinner plate:

Later, skater.

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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