Kitchen Sink

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Well, tonight I didn’t feel like cooking anything too involved, especially not after the Paul WOD at noon. I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to straighten my arms again….anyway, didn’t feel like cooking so  looked in the fridge and was inspired by Aidelle’s chicken sausage. This is gluten-free, tastes great, and is perfect for a quick week night meal.

Other ingredients I found:

  • Chanterelle mushrooms (any shrooms will do)
  • Chard
  • Brussel sprouts (left over from appie on Sunday, see Brussel Sprout post)
  • fresh parsley
  • lemon
  • chicken broth
  • can of organic diced tomatoes
  • sprouted quinoa/rice blend (amazing stuff)

Start the grain blend, that will take about 25 minutes to cook. I use a broth/bouillon – I like the flavor better, but that’s me. This time I used chicken broth.

Heated some extra chicken broth and a bit of olive oil in another pan, tossed in chopped shrooms and chopped sprouts (these were already blanched), let that go for a few minutes, then added can of tomatoes and juice,  chard, sausage, let that go for a few minutes, then added a squirt of lemon juice and parsley, salt and pepper.

When both items are done, I take a small scoop of the grain and put the veggie/meat mix over it and viola! Dinner.

While it seems not that great, it was really hearty, easy, and filled the house with great smells. It was perfect for this chilly Tuesday night!

Pics to come, my phone is sending slooooowwwwwwwww…..

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Irish Soda Bread

Soda bread (Serbiančesnica/чесницаPolishproziaki or łosuchyIrisharán sóideScotsfardel) is a variety of quick bread traditionally made in a variety of cuisines in which sodium bicarbonate (otherwise known as baking soda) is used as a raising agent rather than the more common yeast. The ingredients of traditional soda bread are flourbread sodasalt, and buttermilk. The buttermilk in the dough contains lactic acid, which reacts with the baking soda to form tiny bubbles of carbon dioxide. Other ingredients can be added such as raisins, egg or various nuts.

I made my very first Soda Bread this weekend, it was good! Different – but good. So, because I have celiac, I obviously didn’t use the above information. 🙂 BUT, elena’s pantry (http://www.elanaspantry.com/)  has a superb recipe that I will use again and again. Since this was my first time, I followed to a ‘t…almost. Did not use raisins!. 

Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread
2 ¾ cups blanched almond flour
¼ teaspoon celtic sea salt
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
½ cup raisins [did not use]
2 eggs
2 tablespoons agave nectar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
pinch of caraway seeds

 

  1. In a large bowl combine almond flour, salt, baking soda and raisins
  2. In a smaller bowl combine eggs, agave and apple cider vinegar
  3. Mix wet ingredients into dry
  4. Place dough on a piece of parchment paper and form dough into a large, flat circle that is 8 inches across and 1 ½ inches tall
  5. Using a serrated knife, score top of dough a half an inch deep in shape of a cross
  6. Sprinkle top of bread with caraway seeds
  7. Transfer dough and parchment to a baking sheet
  8. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes, then turn off oven and leave bread in for 10 more minutes
  9. Cool bread for ½ hour then slice and serve with butter and jam [love butter!!!]

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Brussel Sprouts!

I love brussel sprouts. Did you know brussels sprouts, as with broccoli and other brassicas, contains sulforaphane, a chemical believed to have potent anticancer properties? Although boiling reduces the level of the anticancer compounds, steamingmicrowaving, and stir frying does not result in significant loss. 

We only get BS for a short time every year, so here are some recipes and ideas to use this amazing veggie:

1. Chicken meatball recipe you can find on my blog. Nick modified the recipe and added shredded BS to it! One word: AMAZING. The texture was great, taste was great, seriously, NICK – please post that recipe!! One issue: he brought this wonderful food into the gym. The smell was NOT good…but all was fine after an hour or so.

2. elena’s pantry has a great recipe for sprouts, which I am trying on Sunday for our family Thanksgiving. Check it out: http://www.elanaspantry.com/chestnuts-with-brussel-sprouts/

**What I will probably do different: pecans or walnuts instead of chestnuts. Why? Because that’s what I have, they are already shelled, and it’s easier. Toast those babies over low heat on the stove. 

3. Roasted sprouts and cauliflower. Love this recipe.

  • Clean and half sprouts, clean and cut the cauliflower about the same size as sprouts.
  • Toss in olive oil, salt, pepper (to make this easy, pour olive oil in zip lock, put in veggies, and shake to your hearts content. EASY, kids can help that way too.
  • Spread on a single layer on cookie sheet (line cookie sheet with foil or parchment if you want);
  • Sprinkle paprika on there! I used smoked paprika – so good.
  • Roast in a 350 degree preheated oven, for about 20 minutes. Check after ten, shake them a bit, put back in there for another ten. You may need a few more minutes, you may not. 🙂 It’s a beautiful dish with the red, green, and white colors.

4. Plain and simple BS with proscuitto. Follow the same recipe above with the sprouts, toss in olive oil, wee bit of salt and pepper, saute’ or roast, and add ‘crisped’ proscuitto. 

5. My all time fave, I dedicate this one to Alycia H., who LOVES this recipe:

Blanch brussel sprouts, rinse in cold water, pat dry and put in bowl in fridge.

Mix: 

  • 1 c. mayonnaise
  • 1/2 c. sour cream – so, if you cannot do dairy, just use white or tarragon vinegar …start out with a table spoon and check taste
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric
  • 2 tbsp. curry powder
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1/4 c. minced, fresh parsley (optional)
  • some folks use a bit of sugar to cut the tangy flavor. I love the tang – so your call. I would toss in a bit of honey – then check taste.

Chill for a bit in fridge, dip your brussel sprouts in and viola! FABULOUS. Great with other veggies too, this is an all year long dip. 

 

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

 

Marinara! Well, first…Pizza!

Oh my…some of the things I’ve cooked in the last few days have turned out amazing…wowzers. SO! For today’s post, I will share what I have just made – PIZZA!!! My first ever gluten free pizza crust attempt. This is the recipe I used for the crust: http://www.paleoplan.com/2011/10-09/almond-flax-pizza-crust/

I did the crust exactly as it says. It was my first time…one thing I would do differently – make it much flatter….it does puff up a bit when you cook it, before you put on your toppings. And I would double ‘grease’ the pan…I don’t think I used enough on the pan…outside of that? great. Super tasty!

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To finish the pizza – I grabbed some pre-made marinara I had in the freezer. Now, this marinara is probably the best stuff I’ve ever HAD. Lots of pre made sauces out there have a TON of sugar and way too much salt. This recipe is EASY, super healthy, so make 2-3x  the amount and freeze so you can use later. The first time I made this, made with ground turkey and  used over spaghetti squash and spinach…the most recent time I made it, I put it over my chicken meatballs of goodness and used gluten free pasta. AMAZING, and it freezes really well.

This recipe is from Whole 9’s “The Whole 30 Made Simple Your success guide to the Whole30” 2011 edition. This guide does cost a bit of dough, but it has good info and recipes. Get it here: http://whole9life.com/category/whole-30/

On to the recipe (my comments in (XXX) ):

  • Ground meat of choice – but not necessary – 1.5-2lbs
  • 2 cans of crushed tomatoes, 26oz each. If you don’t have these, just use diced and food process…Costco has organic, diced canned tomatoes. They are good!
  • 1 cup shrooms
  • 1 sweet onion, diced (have used regular yellow and regular white – not a fan of sweet onions, and I usually up it to 1.5-2)
  • 1 zucchini, diced (oh yes)
  • (added: 1 cup of diced carrot)
  • (added garlic: at least 3 cloves)
  • (added: salt (little bit) and pepper, oregano)
  • fresh basil
  • olive oil
If you are using meat, cook and set aside.

Sautee garlic and onion in a bit of olive oil (use a deep sauce pan or dutch oven – you’ll have a lot). Toss in tomatoes, all veggies – let simmer for a bit, add ground meat and season to taste. All of the veggies add SO MUCH FLAVOR. It’s amazing.

So – you can use this sauce for so many different things.

Back to the pizza! Here’s the final pic before cooking:

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So, my toppings:

  • marinara from above
  • ground pork (cooked prior to putting on pizza)
  • mozza cheeze
  • fresh basil
  • tomatoes
  • red onions

Put everything on crust, baked for an additional 15 minutes in 400 degree oven. SUPER good!!

Toastmasters

I’m in Toastmasters. When I say this, many people respond, “what is that?!” Officially: Toastmasters International is a world leader in communication and leadership development. Today, our membership is 270,000 strong. These members improve their speaking and leadership skills by attending one of the 13,000 clubs that make up our global network of meeting location.

I attend the Barkley Toasters group at noon on the first and third Fridays of each month.

Today I’m giving my 4th speech (of 10 to earn my Competent communicator Certificate). I’m talking on blogging, and how to start your own blog. If you are ever interested, let me know and I’ll share more.

Honestly, this stuff stresses me out – hence the reason I’m doing it. Speaking better in front of a group or in front of just a few is incredibly important for personal and business reasons. I need to learn to better communicate, as well as to STOP saying, “Dude” so much.

Anyhoo, wish me luck. I’m rocking my speech in practice, but when I get in front of a crowd will it happen just as smooth? I say – HELL YES it will. 😉

 

OH! The most amazing posole recipe EVER coming your way soon…I’ll post pics to tease….

Ahhhhh….Tuesday.

I love my noon time CrossFit X. I’m usually at work by 7, so it’s a nice break to my day to leave, kick my own ass, and then go back to work with a fresh and clear head.

Today, I couldn’t hit the nooner because I was producing a webinar for my company. No big deal. But it never ceases to amaze me how quickly three rolls around and I am drained, at my computer screen, thinking, “wow. I’m fried. I should just go home and veg…” Sometimes it is SO EASY for me to just start talking myself out of it.

Well, I didn’t. I ended up going, but I was late and missed the first part. So, warmed up, did the WOD (freaking awesome) and then stayed to do the first part with the 5:30 class. As I knew I would, I felt awesome after and stayed for more. This is a pattern for me. I know better than to go down the “i’m not going road” and just skip the wasted energy…but, sometimes I just need to go through the process.

I LOVE CrossFit X. I love the people who I work out with and cheer for. I love every trainer and the amazing welcoming atmosphere that says when I walk in the door, “anything is possible.”

Ultimately, I am my own worst enemy. When I start down that path of “I’m fried…” I will have my moment, put on my gym clothes, and get myself to the gym.

Oh, before I forget –  any recipes I share will be in the comments section for now. I haven’t quite figured out the picture and word-post combo yet. It will happen – just not right this second. Comment away! I want to hear what you tried, how it worked, etc. Everyone will appreciate it.