Blog

news and live tips

Chipotle Salad Dressing

I love Chipotle. It’s where I go when I want a cheat day. And by “cheat day,” I mean that I have rice. Living life on the edge! This is basically what’s going through my head those days:

image

So when I tried their new salad dressing, I was hooked. Except that it was a bit too sweet and a bit too salty for my taste. Also, they used adobo sauce – which sometimes contains gluten due to “natural flavors.” There was only one thing to be done. Make my own. So I did. And it’s fabulous and my new favorite. I really want to try it as a wings marinade next – tailgating season is right around the corner!

Chipotle Salad Dressing

  • ¼ cup Raw Honey
  • ½ cup Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Adobo Seasoning
  • 1 tbsp Dried Oregano
  • ¾ tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Mix all ingredients in a blender or using a hand mixer, slowly drizzling in oil at the end. Or, do what I do and put everything in a mason jar, seal with a rubber-rimmed lid and shake it like crazy until the honey is dissolved. Note: Ingredients will separate between use and it can be stored in a sealed container for up to two weeks in the fridge.

 

I Love Arugula Salad and Herb BBQ’d Chicken

Arugula just might be the best leafy green out there…. beside baby spinach. It’s spicy, the texture is pleasant, and it’s spicy. So when a friend of mine celebrated his 30th birthday on Sunday with a BBQ and I knew there were going to be a few paleo (or modified) people there, arugula salad seemed to be the logical choice. And it’s vegan.

For those friends who asked for this recipe, this one’s for you.

But really, the rest of you should make this salad – it’s fabulous. The recipe is from my Mom so I take no claim to this one. But, really, it’s fabulous. Times ten.

As for the chicken, well, here you go to my friends who asked. It was yummy. And I ate too much – but when you eat paleo, eating too much doesn’t really exist in your vocabulary.

image

Arugula and Onion Salad

  • ½ onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ to 1 tsp sea salt, to taste
  • 6 cups organic baby arugula, rinsed (or pre-rinsed)
  1. Saute onion over medium heat in half of the olive oil until translucent and just starting to caramelize.
  2. Add remaining olive oil and allow to sit for a minute longer and let the onions cool slightly, stirring so all of the oil is incorporated with the onions.
  3. Toss with the arugula in a large bowl and add sea salt, to taste.
  4. Serve while onions are still a bit warm.
  5. That’s it! Seriously.

Herb BBQ’d Chicken

  • 6 organic, free-range chicken thighs
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh organic,thyme, chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh organic rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  1. Mix the marinade together until blended.
  2. Toss all of the ingredients in a container (plastic ziploc, glass dish and cover with plastic wrap, or a plastic container) and allow to sit for about an hour in the fridge.
  3. Throw on the BBQ until juices run clear and the meat is cooked, about 4 minutes on each side. Unless you happen to have a Traeger (smoker BBQ) – let it sit a bit longer and that’s even better.

Enjoy!

Roasted Cabbage

So I started writing this while I was in the throes of my new diet and decided to not edit what I had written before. I’m feeling much better, but I had zero energy… which is why I didn’t finish a single blog post. Any ideas of grandeur and working out were kicked to the curb and instead, my life consisted of working, eating (barely anything – I felt like I had the flu) and sleeping like Rip Van Winkle. Now on to the original blog post…

image

My naturopath has me on a new diet… and it zapped my energy times a million until today. I might even get a short run in. Thankfully, this one is a 10 day crash course and then I can start getting back to normal. And by “normal,“ I mean a less-restricted paleo. In the meantime, no bacon (WHAT?!), no vinegar (HECK NO!!!) and no fruit/chocolate/wine/decaf coffee/hard cider/gluten-free beer/honey/paleo brownies/coconut milk ice cream/all things that bring my life joy.

So. You’re probably wondering, “What CAN she eat?” I’m glad you asked. Meat. As long as it’s not pork or bacon. And green leafy veggies. Like arugula, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini and cabbage. And nuts/nut butters/coconut oil/coconut butter/olive oil. And really, that’s about it. Sounds daunting, doesn’t it? It’s mostly paleo. But I love to make my own salad dressings… and they have vinegar. Or I’ll have half an avocado with my breakfast – and that’s off the list. And no eggs. None. So… what does one eat for breakfast if there are no eggs and bacon? Today it looked like a few cucumbers and a handful of almonds. I need to figure this thing out. Luckily, it’s only a week and a half to two weeks. And thankfully, lunch was easy to figure out – roasted chicken breast (salt and peppered) and roasted cabbage (hoping the doc says that roasting veggies is okay otherwise, I’m just going to get a nasogastric tube for the rest of this time). Anyway, done complaining. I hope you enjoy the roasted cabbage as much as I do!

Roasted Cabbage

  • 1 head of cabbage, outside leaves removed, rinsed, and sliced ¾-1" thick
  • 2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 10 peppercorns
  • Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place a piece of parchment paper on a jellyroll pan (cookie sheet with sides).
  2. Pour enough EVOO on the parchment to spread evenly on the parchment paper.
  3. Using a mortar and pestle (or something that will smash up the spices), smash up the spices and set aside.
  4. Sprinkle half of the spice mix on the pan and lay the cabbage in a single layer on the pan and sprinkle with the remaining spice mix on top.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve hot.

image

Have a wonderful weekend!

Adobo Sweet Potato Fries

I had you at sweet potato, didn’t I? If there is one vegetable that I can binge on, and really, there are many, it would be a sweet potato. I mean, seriously. They’re glorious. I’ve been on a sweet and spicy kick lately and have been craving chocolate with cayenne peppers or sweet and spicy chicken (I really need to paleo-ize that) or… you get my drift.

image

Just a quick note: Sweet Potatoes aren’t part of the Dirty Dozen. In fact, they’re really low on the pesticide scale so you don’t have to buy organic. (And the Environmental Working Group, link above, has a great app you can download on your smartphone to help you remember!) They are not a GMO product so feel free to save a few dollars and buy conventional on this one.

Also, I make my own adobo seasoning blend and use it in just about everything. I’ll make it in large batches and store it in a pint sized mason jar with the ingredients and measurements written on the lid. The recipe for the adobo seasoning is below.

Enjoy!

Adobo Sweet Potato Fries

  • 5 small Sweet Potatoes, scrubbed and de-eyed, sliced into thin strips (no more than 1/2” x 1/2”)
  • 2-3 tbsp Adobo Seasoning (see below for seasoning mix)
  • 3 tbsp Coconut Oil, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and place a sheet of parchment paper onto a jellyroll pan.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the sweet potato strips, coconut oil and 2 tbsp adobo seasoning until well coated.
  3. Lay out in a single layer on the prepared pan and toss with the remaining adobo seasoning – or as much as you see fit.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes, remove pan from oven and toss, and bake for another 10 minutes or until desired.

image

Adobo Seasoning

  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ¾ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp chili powder

Mix together and store in a sealed container (I use a mini mason jar or a clean and empty spice jar).

PIZZA!!!!!! (and it’s paleo!)

A few months ago, I tried to make paleo pizza dough but it was an abysmal failure. After scouring Pinterest (yes, I’m addicted to that as much as I am to running), I decided to modify a recipe and lose the cheese.

Apparently you really do need cheese sometimes – it was barely palatable to say the least.

This last week, the cravings for carbs and protein hit like none other thanks to my new attempts at CrossFit (I look like a flailing goat or some other highly pathetic animal but I plan on mastering it). Grocery shopping was not in the gameplan – it’s the end of the month which equals time to get creative, make mistakes (hopefully they taste good), and only get messy enough that I don’t destroy my kitchen…. oh, and not spend any money.

The pizza was delicious and both paleo and non-paleo roommates enjoyed it thoroughly, with a request to make it again soon. If the non-paleo likes it,  you know it’s good!

image

Paleo Pizza
For the crust:

  • ½ head of caulflower, “riced”
  • 2 ½ tbsp coconut flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • dash of salt

Toppings:

  • 1 bottle Trader Joe’s Artichoke Antipasto Pesto (or whatever it was called – it’s not paleo because of the oil type but it was on my shelf from who knows when and I wanted to get rid of it) OR you can do my Tomato-Free “Tomato” Marinara
  • ½ medium Onion, sliced very thinly
  • 5-6 cloves of Garlic, sliced thin
  • a few handfuls of Arugula
  • ½# Ground Chicken sauteed with 3 cloves minced garlic, salt and pepper
  • A handful of Organic Grape Tomatoes, halved (omit if on SCD or anti-inflammatory diets)
  • Kalamata Olives, halved and pits removed
  • salt and pepper
  • Seriously. Whatever you have in your fridge.
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a food processor, process small amounts of cauliflower until they are the size of small tapioca, scraping down the sides as needed. You may need to remove any large pieces and put them in the next batch so you don’t juice your cauliflower. Remove and dump into a bowl. Repeat until all cauliflower has been riced.
  3. Mix in remaining ingredients (you could put some herbs in for some extra something).
  4. Line a pan with parchment paper and pat out a crust. Precook for 15 minutes, or until the sides of the crust are starting to turn golden brown.
  5. Remove from the oven and place toppings on. Place back in oven for 15 min, or until the bottom of the crust is a light golden brown.
  6. Let cool for a few minutes, cut and serve! Note: This is an"eat with fork and knife" crust – I haven’t perfected the crunchy crust quite yet but am working on it!image

Paleo Pumpkin Bread

I don’t know why I have been craving pumpkin bread lately but I have. Some things are better unargued and simply embraced. So when this morning was surprisingly cool at the homeplace, I decided YOLO. Why not. Why not make paleo pumpkin bread (and get rid of that last can of organic pumpkin puree gracing my shelf)? And now you know the real reason I wanted to make pumpkin bread is out and in the open.

image

No matter, it had to be done – Autumn will be here before you know it and I’ll be really really craving pumpkin bread… to go along with my pumpkin spice rooibos tea. And pumpkin orange scarf. While carving pumpkins. AND back to summer. Okay. I’m going to get my summer on – I hope you all enjoy this deliciousness!

image

Paleo Pumpkin Bread

  • 1 cup Pumpkin Puree – either fresh or canned, organic
  • 5 Eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Coconut Oil, melted
  • ¼ cup Raw Honey
  • ½ cup Coconut Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ¾ tsp ground allspice
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Rub coconut oil (not included in the 2 tbsp) or spray coconut oil cooking spray (from Trader Joe’s) on a metal loaf pan.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat wet ingredients together until well blended using either a mixer or a wooden spoon.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients and mix.
  4. Fold dry ingredients into the wet and stir until incorporated.
  5. Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake for 30-40 minutes, test for doneness with a toothpick, which should come out of the middle clean.
  6. Remove from pan when slightly cooled and place on cooling rack.
  7. Enjoy with organic sweet cream butter. And go back for another slice.

Homemade Paleo Fruit and Nut Bars

This weekend was action packed, hilarious and so much fun. Times a billion. Between happy hour with the cousins (always good for laughing so hard that my side hurts), happy hour with friends (ditto), a BBQ/bonfire in Silverton followed up with more laughter – I was the DD for a carload of 4 guys, my Dad’s birthday and a family day up at Mt. Hood, saying good-bye to a dear friend, and topping off the evening with coconut paleo ice cream, this weekend was busy! And if you didn’t follow any of that, it’s okay. I’m still wrapping my head around it as well.

I received a text from a co-worker asking me for my paleo LaraBars.I had promised a few of my friends the recipe as well so here it is! (And thanks, Amanda for the reminder!) Since I changed around my diet, the concept of grab-n-go snacks has changed dramatically. Gone are the days where I think I’ll just grab “something” on the way. I actually have to think it out. Health bars are no exception. Larabars and Kind bars (not paleo – they contain rice and glucose and there are some nut blends that are no-no’s) are about all I can find that are suitable to my dietary needs.

The problem with both is their cost. At $1.50-2 per bar, it’s just highway robbery. So I sat down one day and looked at the ingredients list and then I made my own concoction based on what I had on hand and the deliciousness below was born.

Note: These are super super sticky – I haven’t tried it yet but if you have a food dehydrator, I’m sure that a couple of hours on low (or the fruit leather setting) will dry them out a bit. As such, they need to be individually wrapped in saran wrap and stored in the fridge until consumed.

image

Homemade Paleo Fruit and Nut Bars

  • 10 Medjool dates, pits removed
  • ½ cup raw cashew pieces
  • ¼ cup raw, unsalted sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup dried wild blueberries (I used Trader Joe’s brand)
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate cocoa powder (NOT Dutch processed) or carob powder
  1. Soak the dates in boiled water in a medium mixing bowl until soft.
  2. During this time, process through the cashew pieces using small batches in a dedicate-for-nuts-only coffee grinder until are small – stopping often to stir (not going to cashew butter with this one). Pour contents into a small bowl and start over until all the nuts are processed in this manner
  3. When dates are soft, drain water and strain in a fine-sieved colander for a few minutes until the excess liquid is drained off.
  4. Return to bowl and with a fork, mash until dates are a pulp and the skins disintegrated.
  5. Mix dates, cashews, sunflower seeds, wild blueberries and cocoa powder until incorporated.
  6. Line an 8×8" pan with plastic wrap (with extra over the sides so you can wrap it when you are done) and fold the mixture onto it. Using the sides of the plastic wrap, form the mixture into a square about ½-¾ inch thick. Wrap sides of plastic wrap around the larabars and place in the fridge for a few hours or until firm. I
  7. If using a dehydrator, place on a rack, minus the plastic wrap, and place in the dehydrator on the fruit leather setting for a few hours, checking back often.
  8. When bars are chilled and firm, cut into desired size and wrap individually in plastic wrap. Store in the fridge until consumed.

Arugula Egg Breakfast Salad

I know, I know. The thought of a salad for breakfast sounds a little weird, right? Don’t worry, though. It’s delicious. I was privileged enough to go in late to work today… which was wonderful considering that last night’s workout left me exhausted and sore so the thought of waking up early and heading into a job where I sit at a desk all day just didn’t sound too appetizing. (run-on sentence, anyone?) I decided to make the most of the cool morning and cook up something that was filling, nutritious, and colorful. I also wanted something chock full of vegetables. I’ve been craving them like crazy.

In other news, I went to a new bar with some of my girl friends from work last night for happy hour. And I ordered their special “Second St Sling”

Oh my, it was fabulous. I have a new love. If you’re ever in Portland (or live there now), and go to a gastropub called Produce Row, order that. And their fried cauliflower. And then thank me later. Or just skip the thanking part and order another round. 🙂

image

Enjoy and cheers to a wonderful and relaxing weekend!

Arugula Egg Breakfast Salad

  • Organic arugula, rinsed – a handful or however much you feel like eating
  • 3 strips lean gluten-free applewood smoked bacon (I used Hempler’s – your butcher will tell you if it is gluten-free or not), sliced into ½"-¾" strips
  • One quarter of a medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (Because why not use three cloves of garlic?!)
  • ¾ cup organic grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 organic, free-range large eggs, beaten
  • Small amount of sheep’s milk feta in brine, crumbled and no brine (optional – omitting makes the dish paleo)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. In a skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until starting to brown.
  2. Add onion and saute until onion is translucent, stirring often. Add garlic and stir off and on until garlic is starting to golden.
  3. Incorporate beaten egg and “fold” until egg is almost done setting.
  4. Toss in the tomatoes and heat just until the skins begin to blister.
  5. Serve over a bed of organic arugula and top with crumbled feta.
  6. Salt and pepper to taste.

image

Paleo Banana Bread Pancakes

There have been quite a few Pinterest postings lately in the paleo feeds about banana pancakes and after you’ve tried them, it’s easy to see why. Paleo banana pancakes are delightful – they’re light and sweet… and eggy. That last part was a problem for me. I don’t do “eggy” – it’s weird but I just can’t do it. Especially when combined with something as juicy as smashed, cooked banana.

To remedy this, I decided to take matters into my own hands and add a little extra something: Ground golden flax seed. And spices. The end result was a pancake so delicious that I didn’t even need any organic maple syrup. So, turn on some “Banana Pancakes” by Jack Johnson and I hope you enjoy these as much as I do!

Paleo Banana Bread Pancakes

Yields: 5-6 small pancakes (one serving)

  • 2 large organic eggs, beaten
  • 1 ripe organic banana, mashed
  • ¼-1/3 cup golden flax meal
  • ¼ tsp (plus maybe a bit more, depending on taste) ground cinnamon
  • dash of nutmeg and allspice
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  1. Heat coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Spoon pancake mix into skillet and wait to flip – these pancakes will not bubble like normal pancakes. Instead, the glossy will go away – check the bottom of the pancake with a spatula for a golden brown color.
  3. Flip and cook on the other side until golden brown. Inside of pancakes will be a more wet due to the mashed banana. Cook at a lower heat if a drier pancake is desired.
  4. Serve with a side of gluten-free bacon (because why not?) and enjoy!

image