Before I rant about this recipe, I want to announce an exciting event coming up in Portland this Saturday. Some of you may have seen it on my Facebook page, but I want to share it again! Anyway, Jason Seib, author of The Paleo Coach, is giving a FREE talk at the Pearl District Whole Foods from 12-1 p.m, this Saturday, May 4th. There will be copies of Jason’s book available for purchase and he will also be available for signing. In addition, there will be some delicious paleo recipes to try made by the lovely, Ashley Kipp, the pearl store’s Healthy Foods Specialist and blogger behind Craving4more. Space is limited and an RSVP is required, so if you want to sign up, please email Ashley at firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s only two days away, so make sure you reserve your spot now! The presentation will be held upstairs in Salud, the demo kitchen next to The Mezz.
Meanwhile, this simple and tasty dish is versatile and pretty much foolproof — at least in my opinion. Honestly, I don’t have too much to say about it, other than the fact that it’s just plain good. Eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It’d also be great mixed with some scrambled eggs, but a runny egg on top is lovely too. Can you believe that I used to detest runny yolks? Up until a couple years ago, I only ate my yolks cooked through. That’s just blasphemy!
- 1 lb ground turkey thighs
- 1 Tbsp US Wellness Meats grass-fed beef tallow
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 bunch radishes, chopped (about 1 cup)
- 2 large carrots, chopped
- 3 cups fresh spinach, torn into pieces
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Tbsp dried parsley
- 1 tsp dried marjoram
- 1 tsp ground sage
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- Dash of nutmeg
- 3 Tbsp bone broth or low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 Tbsp grass-fed butter
- Sunny side-up pastured egg for serving, optional
- Melt tallow in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the ground turkey and break up with a spatula. Then, add the chopped garlic. Season with a little sea salt and pepper, and continue to cook.
- Next, add the radishes, carrots, spices, bone broth, and a bit more sea salt and pepper; stir. Continue to cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until meat is cooked through and vegetables are crisp-tender. Then, add the torn spinach leaves and butter. Cook another couple minutes, until spinach softens a bit. Adjust seasonings as needed.
- Optional to serve with a sunny-side up egg and let the yolk ooze all over.
Yields: 3 servings
Well, Saturday was the big ring shopping day and boy, was it eventful. I’m kind of sad to say it’s over, but the memory is very fond. This truly is such a fun and special time in our lives.
Jesse and I started the day with breakfast out at Besaw’s, my favorite place to go for breakfast in Portland. We had to wait a bit for a table, but expected to do so and weren’t in a huge rush anyway since the first jewelry shop I wanted to go to didn’t open until 11:30.
Anyway, after breakfast, the day unfolded into three jewelry shops, many beautiful rings (I even tried on one that cost about $10,000…a bit over our budget!), clothes and a bow tie for Jesse (very Portland appropriate, if I do say so myself), celebratory wine and Thai food for dinner since we were too exhausted to go grocery shopping and cook afterward. We were gone from about 9:45 am – 7 pm!
I tried on so many rings and repeated the words, “it’s beautiful,” and “Jesse, look at this one,” more than I could begin to count. With all the rings I liked, I could have had one for every finger…and then some. I knew though, right away, when I found “the one.” What’s funny, is that I found it at the first jewelry store too and knew it was the going to be the one I’d pick. Still though, I had to go elsewhere and reassure myself. I went to two antique/vintage jewelry stores and one modern jewelry store, all of which were in NW Portland.
I actually decided on two rings, even though I thought I’d only pick one, so I have both a band and an engagement ring. The band is a 1930s white gold ring with a stream of little diamonds on top and the engagement ring is a 1920s white gold filigree design with an old mine cut diamond (diamond estimated to be from the 1890s). I can’t share pictures because they’re being re-sized and won’t be ready for 7-10 days. I’ll share a picture on Facebook of my engagement ring when I get it back, but will wait on the other until it’s official. Oh, and Jesse picked a simple white gold band from the same shop where I got mine. It’s a modern estate band, but the time period is unknown. Overall, we’re very happy and excited about our choices. I can’t wait to get my engagement ring back and wear it!
Wow, it’s been one heck of a week in terms of school and activity, and my body has felt the brunt of it. Thankfully, the school week is over and I now have room to think more about the things I’m excited about. Here’s what I’m especially stoked about right now:
- Ring shopping this weekend: Do I need to say any more here? Oh my goodness, I can’t wait! Jesse and I are going out to breakfast on Saturday and then starting from there. We’re going to Gilt Vintage & Artisan Jewelry to look at some antique pieces (I love the idea of having a ring with a background story!) and will scope out a couple other recommended places as well (Alchemy and Judith Arnell Jewelers). We’re also going ceremony outfit shopping for Jesse. We’re keeping our little ceremony a bit more casual (but nice, of course) and Jesse is really not a suit guy, so we’re going an alternate route. I think it’ll be better this way and why not pay money for something that can be worn again? Jesse and I are practical people, so this makes the most sense for us. I’ll recap about all this after the weekend!
- US Wellness Meats: Yep, my friend, Macala and I are in the process of placing another US Wellness Meats order. I get super giddy putting an order together. Seriously, it’s like being a kid in a candy store. We go in on orders together every few months. We don’t go hog wild, but get some good staples to keep handy in the freezer. This is where I get all my sugar-free beef bacon too. I even ordered our kitties some special pet food, which is a mixture of raw grass-fed beef, beef liver and beef heart. I know they’ll love it because we already feed them some raw food that is a combo of raw turkey, turkey liver and turkey heart and they go crazy over it. They eat this as a supplement to their dry, grain-free cat food. We take good care of our furry friends!
- Primal Recess class: I had to miss this class on Tuesday due to school and exhaustion, so I’m happy to go today. This class, at Recreate, is always a bit more intimate and Jesse has us do lots of playful stuff. I’m usually the only girl and have fun playing with the boys.
- Getting a real senior client: For my special populations pro-act class, which is a follow-up from my fitness and aging class, we’re learning how to test and program for the senior population. Last week, we visited an amazing senior retirement center that literally had everything you could dream of (shops, fitness center & pool, bank, clinic, post office, hair salon, etc.)! We were fortunate to not only get a full tour, but also take part in a chair aerobics class. We let all the seniors find their chairs first because they all have their favorite spots and God forbid someone take it! They were adorable, funny and oh-so precious. It was so enjoyable and heart-warming. In terms of the class, I was quite surprised how challenging a chair aerobics class actually is! Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t intense or difficult for me, but it was harder than I anticipated. The equipment included a chair, obviously, a ball and light dumbbells. Anyway, we’ll be going back in a couple weeks to be introduced to a real client, in which we’ll consult with and administer senior fitness tests to (i.e. 8-foot get-up and go, back scratch, sit-to-stand, etc.). Then, we’ll develop a program for our client and go back again and show them the exercises. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun and even though I’m a touch nervous, I’m excited more than anything. It’s really touching to spend time with seniors because it reminds me of being with my grandparents and other senior relatives. It feels good and is actually a bit comforting.
- Continuing to purge: With all the new stuff I got for my wedding shower and items I picked out myself with shower money, Jesse and I have cleared space and gotten rid of a lot of stuff. It feels so refreshing to get rid of bagfuls of old things and replace it with nice, new and fresh stuff. We live in such a small place though, that we really didn’t have a choice, but to purge. We’ll be making another trip to goodwill soon because we just got a shiny new Oneida silverware set and need to get rid of our mismatched cheap pieces. I’m sure I can find more items (again) to ditch with the silverware. It feels SO good!
I am taking a break from food today to say express my gratitude. I just have to get it off my chest, and nearly want to shout it from the rooftops!
I am thankful, every single day, for this life and what I’m creating for myself. Up until 10 months ago, I never knew life could be this satisfying and amazing. I was at a job that made me unhappy and stressed (stressed because I felt like I could never do anything good enough and I often felt like I was walking on eggshells), and I was not pursuing my passions or using my energy to its greatest capacity. I’ve said this before, but getting laid off from that job was the best thing that could have happened to me. Since that time, I’ve changed my attitude and perspective, surrounded myself with positive people and finally started pursuing things that mattered to me. And guess what? Opportunities fell into my lap effortlessly, and all the jobs I have now I did not apply for, but rather, they were offered to me: coaching at Recreate Fitness, making treats at Cultured Caveman, freelance writing for a former co-worker’s side business and now, doing some PR work for Jason Seib, my mentor and author of the fantastic new book, The Paleo Coach. Having people who believe in me and want ME is an awesome feeling. I am so blessed and I know it might sound sappy, but sometimes, all I can do is cry because I’m so happy. I also am a bit of a softy and show emotion easily. But, do you see how important it is to be pursuing the things that matter to you? Don’t settle for less…it’s not worth it and life is too short.
What are you creating for yourself? Are you pursuing the things that are near and dear to your heart? If not, what’s stopping you?
Alright, time to backtrack a few days to my Saturday, which I said I’d recap about today. It was a fantastic day and started with a great workout at Recreate in the morning, part of which was outdoors in the sunny weather. Afterward, I picked up a few things at Food Front Co-op, then came home and made a late breakfast, which I ate outside on the patio. Perfection.
Then, I got cleaned up and went to the sauerkraut tasting at Whole Foods that my friend, Ashley was hosting. Ashley is the healthy foods specialist at the Whole Foods store in the Pearl District in Portland and also the blogger behind Craving4more. She writes beautiful and inspiring posts, and definitely has a way with words. Sometimes, she shares fabulous looking recipes too.
The tasting incorporated a variety of raw, unpasteurized sauerkraut, many of which were from Firefly Kitchens. There was also different dishes to sample that included sauerkraut as an ingredient. I didn’t know there was going to be so much, and was still full from my late breakfast, but managed to sample a little bit. I sampled some Firefly kraut on its own (varieties included Yin Yang Carrots, Cortido, Caraway, and Ruby Red). They were all wonderful and so different, and they ferment for three months! I especially loved the Yin Yang Carrots, which is fermented carrots with ginger. Lucky for me, Ashley gave me a little bit to take home. The other flavors were delicious as well. I got to take home the remaining jar of Caraway too, as well as another brand of raw kraut that had beets, carrots and cabbage in it! Yum, yum.
As for the recipes, I sampled the pecan pate, ruby red beet and kraut atop of mixed greens (I liked eating this with the pate), roasted butternut squash with an almond butter/kimchi sauce and secret brownies, which incorporated sauerkraut into the recipe. These were raw, of course, so the benefits of the sauerkraut were not lost. These were also surprisingly good and you really don’t notice the kraut. My favorite, by far, was the roasted squash. The sauce was just to die for and not only that, but I am a sucker for squash! There was also a smoothie that had kraut in it, but I didn’t taste it since it was made with store-bought almond milk. I only drink homemade almond milk because it doesn’t have things like guar gum, carrageenan, etc., which I need to stay away from. It got a lot of rave reviews from the other attendees though.
Ashley has done a couple posts this week about the kraut tasting and recipes, so if you’re interested, please go check out her blog. Specifically, check out this post and this post, and also check back again tomorrow, because it looks like she is going to post more of the recipes.
Additionally, Ashley gave some great ideas for eating kraut. For example, use it on tacos, mix with tuna for a jazzed up tuna salad (egg salad too), roll up into a slice of deli meat, use atop of deviled eggs, mix in smoothies, add to salad, etc. The ideas are really endless, just don’t heat it, so as to not kill the live cultures.
Thanks, Ashley for putting on a great event!
I love date nights, but sadly, they don’t happen very often. Jesse and I tend to be homebodies on the weekends since the weekdays are so busy. I feel lucky though, because I got to have two date night weekends in a row! Last Saturday, we went out for my birthday and this past Saturday we went out for dinner and a dance performance. I almost felt like it was my birthday all over again! Jesse surprised me at the last minute with tickets to see BodyVox-2 at BodyVox, and a couple hours beforehand, asked me if I wanted to eat at Dick’s Kitchen prior to the show. Um, yes…I love the naked grass-fed burgers at Dick’s Kitchen. They do it right!
Anyway, it was really sweet of Jesse to set up this date night for us, and we both had a great time. Granted, we had to eat quickly without much time for conversation once our food came…the detriments of leaving the house a tad too late and the lack of parking spaces in NW Portland. I didn’t even get to finish my wine and as you may know, having wine is a special occasion for me, so I was bummed I didn’t get to finish it. I mean, okay, I could’ve chugged it, but I just don’t like doing that. I want to enjoy it and sip it, and have conversations over it.
After dinner, we whipped over to the theater and found our seats, which were front row! Jesse sure picked us some good ones. It also helps that he gets a discount on tickets since he’s a current student at BodyVox. He takes weekly ballet classes there, and I love that he does this. It was weird being right in the front row because the stage isn’t raised, so you’re at the same level as the dancers. You can see the sweat pouring off of them, hear their breathing and clearly witness their expressions. It made it that much more real. We’ve seen other performances here before, but have never sat in the front row, so it was a new experience.
Also, I couldn’t resist taking the picture below of the man sitting next to me. Talk about keeping things classy! Not only that, but he had God-awful breath. We never had a conversation or anything, but I could smell it just sitting next to him. Breath shouldn’t smell like his did and shouldn’t really smell at all, unless you just ate garlic or onion or something. Anyway, enough about that.
Did you have a nice weekend? What did you do?
I am very excited and grateful to have my first guest post today from the wonderful, Mary Catherine, over at Nourish Paleo Foods. She developed this tasty recipe to share with all of you, and drew some great comparisons between Portland and Denver (where she’s from). Please go check out her page when you get the chance. You’ll see that she has a lot to offer! Thank you again, Mary Catherine. I’m thrilled and honored to feature you!
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I first started reading Alisa’s blog (PaleoinPDX.com) for the delicious paleo recipes — and because she tells funny stories and seems to have endless energy, which I kind of hoped would rub off on me.
But I was also intrigued because she lived in Portland. If I ever leave Denver, it will be to move to Portland.
My sister Lauren lives in Portland and loves it so much she swears she will stay forever. Lauren and I would like to live closer to each other. Ideally, close enough we can swing by to borrow clothes or watch Glee together. Or maybe go to CrossFit followed by a long chat over coconut milk lattes. Our imaginary plans always take place in Portland.
I have been to Portland half a dozen times to visit. During my days there, I’ve noticed a few differences between the largest city in Oregon and my home town. Denver is a casual city. Jeans and some cute shoes will get you through most any social situation. But somehow Portland manages even more casual. It seems that jeans and Keens are appropriate for fine dining. My theory is that it’s hard to wear too many cute shoes because they just get ruined in the rain.
That brings me to another obvious difference — the climate. I know Portland folks like to talk about the perfect weather from June through September but that falls way short of the 300 days of sunshine we get on average each year in Denver.
The plus side of all the moisture is obvious every time I walk around Portland. It’s so pretty! The trees and bushes and yards are lush and green. My yard in Denver is xeriscaped with plants selected to require minimum moisture — but we still need to water them three times a week to keep them alive.
But overall I think there are more similarities than differences between the two cities. Residents of both cities like their bikes, their dogs and being active. Like Denver, Portland seems to have a good number of people who care about their health, the environment and the food they eat. In fact, Portland and Denver were two of the first cities to host paleo food trucks!
And this time of year in both Denver and Portland – and most of the rest of the country – it’s chilly outside. So here’s a recipe for an easy and flavorful recipe a dish that will warm up the house. The pork roast gradually cooks for hours, filling the house with heat and a wonderful scent.
Chimichurri sauce is an intensely flavorful sauce that is typically served with steak. I think it pairs well with pulled pork. The tang of the sauce plays off the fattiness of the meat for a treat you are sure to enjoy – no matter where you live.
Pork with Creamy Chimichurri Sauce
For pulled pork —
- Bone-in pork roast, about 2.5 pounds
- Coconut oil or beef tallow, 2 tablespoons
- Salt and pepper
For chimichurri sauce –
- Flat parsley, 1 bunch (about packed 2 cups chopped)
- Olive oil, 1 cup
- Garlic, 3 cloves
- Red wine vinegar, 1/2 cup
- Dried oregano, 1 teaspoon
- Crushed red pepper flakes, 1 teaspoon
- Salt, 1 teaspoon
- Coconut milk, 1/2 cup
- Rub pork roast with fat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper then place roast in baking dish. Cover with tin foil and bake in oven at 300 degrees for 5 hours.
- Pull all leaves from the parsley. (Don’t worry if there’s a little stem in the pile.) In food processor (or using hand blender), blend together all ingredients for the sauce.
- When pork comes out of the oven, use two forks to pull it apart into chunks.
- Top meat with generous spoonfuls of chimichurri sauce and enjoy!
Mary Catherine started dabbling in paleo eating in 2007 and transitioned to following paleo principles more each year since then. She gets a kick out of putting together delicious paleo meals and sharing food with others through her blog, nourishpaleofoods.com. Mary Catherine lives in Denver, Colorado, with her husband, Matt, and her all-American junkyard dog, Tour. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
In lieu of Fat Tuesday, I have a fatty (good, healthy coconut fat!) and delicious treat for you all. No, it’s not a paleo-fied paczki either. I really have no desire to try and replicate those. I do recall eating them on Fat Tuesday during my childhood though, and they were okay, but I never really thought they were that awesome. Sure, I still ate them because grandma offered me one every year, but I think I would have rather eaten a plain glazed doughnut. Oh, how times have changed.
Anyway, the idea for this treat all started with Jesse. You see, I haven’t made ice cream in a while and apparently Jesse noticed, or had a craving at the very least. I say this, because he came home from Food Front Co-op the other day with two boxes of coconut cream, which is what I use to make ice cream sometimes (combined with coconut milk). He said, “Look, I bought you something!” What he meant was, “I bought you this, so you can make me ice cream!” Or in other words, “Make me ice cream, woman!” Okay, I’m exaggerating because the ice cream is for me too and I enjoy it just as much as he does, but I like to tease him. It’s all out of love.
Jesse and I love my plain vanilla ice cream recipe (everything below, minus the hazelnut butter), which is what I was going to make, but then I got the idea to add fresh hazelnut butter. I was shopping at the Alberta Co-op on Friday, and spotted it in their bulk section. They have a big bucket of it and you can scoop out as much as you need, whether it be a lot or just a few tablespoons. I appreciate this because hazelnut butter is spendy and even though it’s still expensive in bulk, I can buy just a little bit, making it pretty affordable. This way too, I won’t go hog wild and eat it all. I don’t know about all of you, but nut butter is super addicting for me, so for this reason, I only occasionally buy it. I generally turn to coconut butter over nut butter anyway.
If you can’t find the coconut cream, don’t fret! Just replace it with more full-fat coconut milk. It’ll work just fine. I know, because I make ice cream this way as well. It really just depends if I have coconut cream on hand or not. The coconut cream makes the ice cream a bit thicker and richer, but it’s still fantastic and creamy with more coconut milk in its place. Additionally, you can use a different nut butter if you can’t find hazelnut butter in the store and don’t have the availability to make your own. This recipe would obviously be awesome with unsweetened cocoa powder added to the mixture too. I actually contemplated doing so, but we decided we wanted the vanilla base, so the hazelnut flavor could really shine through. Maybe next time.
Happy Fat Tuesday! And happy birthday to my dear Dad who turns 63 today! Cheers!
- 1 14.5 oz can full-fat coconut milk
- 1 cup coconut cream (I use Aroy-D brand, comes in a 33 oz. white box)
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1.5 – 2 Tbsp raw honey (I used raw blackberry honey)
- Dash of Himalayan sea salt
- 1/3 cup hazelnut butter
- Add the coconut milk, coconut cream, vanilla, honey and sea salt to the blender. Don’t use a food processor for this — you’ll end up with a mess if you do. Blend on high for a couple minutes, until the mixture is smooth. If your coconut cream is cold because you already had some open and stored it in the fridge, it may require more blending. Just keep blending until it’s smooth!
- With your ice cream maker turned on, pour the mixture into the freezer container. Let churn for about 18 minutes. Then, add the hazelnut butter and continue to churn for another 3-5 minutes or until hazelnut butter is mixed through and ice cream is thick.
- Scoop ice cream into a container that can be stored in the freezer. Serve some up right away or place in the freezer to firm up a bit more, if desired. I didn’t do so, but feel free to garnish with some chopped raw hazelnuts.
Homework, writing and reading. That’s the summary of my weekend. In fact, I was so worn out on Saturday after being at it all day, that I missed out on girl’s night with some of my co-workers from Recreate and other great ladies that workout there. I just didn’t have the energy for it, and knew that I needed my focus to roll over into Sunday. Luckily, I did have some fun Friday night and got a lot done this weekend, which was critical.
On Friday, Jesse and I went out with an old college friend of mine from Michigan. We met when we were both 18 years old, attending Eastern Michigan University in the interior design program, which will be 10 years ago this August. Anyway, she was here visiting with her husband and asked if we wanted to get together. Naturally, I said yes. We met at the Mission Theater for drinks and then watched the newest episode of Portlandia, which the theater airs every Friday night. You may have seen this when I posted it on my Facebook page, but here’s one of my favorite clips from the new season called, fart patio. Part of why I think it’s so funny, is because as a former vegetarian and vegan, I can totally relate! I’ve even eaten at the cafe they’re at in the clip, which has a lot of unique things on their menu — all vegan, mostly raw and nearly all gluten-free. I don’t really go there anymore, but if I do, I get a fresh green juice. They have some really tasty ones to choose from.
After watching Portlandia, we walked across the street and ate Thai food and drank hot Thai tea at Sweet Basil Thai. I ordered a gluten-free red curry with chicken, no rice. It was delicious. It felt so good to get out, see an old friend and laugh. I hadn’t laughed that hard in a while. My two glasses of wine didn’t sit super well with me, even though I chose something dry, but I still had a great time and didn’t let it hold me back. It was the first drink I’ve had since New Year’s eve. I’m not much of a drinker — usually just at holidays and when I go out with friends.
On Sunday, I worked in the morning, then went to a coffee shop afterward to pump out some more work. Then, I came home and got some 24-hour yogurt started, along with a batch of bone broth. I also made a tasty, creamy beverage that I’m hoping to post later this week, so stay tuned! Meanwhile, this week’s chaos has already begun. I worked out at Recreate this morning, came home, am off to school shortly and then after school, I head out to Clackamas Physical Conditioning with my friend for our weekly appointment with Jason Seib. I get my advanced copy of Jason’s book today and am so excited to start digging in!
How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun or cook up anything delicious?