Ham, Carrot & Asparagus Egg Bake

We didn’t do anything for Easter this year, nor did I make anything special (granted, we did eat plenty of my dill pickle deviled eggs leading up to it), but I did pick up some ham since it was on sale. Okay, and I did gift Jesse with a special dark chocolate bar from The Meadow, but that’s the extend of it. We didn’t even eat the ham on Easter, as it was a leftovers kind of night. Up until Saturday afternoon, we actually thought we were getting together with friends on Easter Sunday (not for Easter, but just to get together for dinner), but that ended up falling through.

Meanwhile, if you have any leftover Easter ham or picked some up because it was on sale, this recipe is a great way to use it. There’s asparagus, carrot, and dill in the mix too, which yields a lot of spring flavor. It’s a great recipe to save for Mother’s Day brunch or any spring occasion.

Cheers and enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups asparagus, chopped into 1-inch pieces (remove woody ends)
  • 1 large carrot, cut in half and peeled into strips
  • 2 cups good-quality ham, diced into cubes
  • 12 eggs, preferably pasture-raised
  • 1/4 cup good-quality chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup full-fat coconut milk (I used this brand, which has no gums)
  • 1 tsp dried dill
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Steam asparagus pieces over medium-low heat for about 4-5 minutes. Remove steamer basket from pot and set aside to cool a bit.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, broth, coconut milk, dried dill, sea salt, and black pepper.
  4. Add the steamed asparagus, carrot strips, and ham cubes to a 9×13 baking dish and distribute evenly (note: depending on the pan you use, you may need to grease it with a little butter or coconut oil first). Pour egg mixture on top.
  5. Place in preheated oven and bake for 45-50 minutes or until set.
  6. Let cool 5-10 minutes before slicing.

Yields: 6 servings

 

 

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Sausage, Squash and Spinach Egg Casserole

egg casserole

Jesse and I ate this egg casserole Christmas morning and both thought it was spectacular. I threw it together that morning and while it baked, we enjoyed coffee and opened some gifts from our family. It was just us on Christmas and it turned out to be a quiet, but enjoyable day. We were both okay with quiet and hanging out at home since we were recently traveling in Hawaii (which was our Christmas gift to each other).

Meanwhile, when I made this recipe, I was fortunate to have half of a roasted delicata squash leftover in my fridge, but if you don’t have any leftover, here’s what to do: cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds and place in a baking pan cut-side down. Fill the pan with about 1/4″ of water and bake in a 350 degree oven for 45-60 minutes.

Anyway, I hope you all had a lovely Christmas that was filled with joy. I wish you all a happy New Year!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 1 lb ground turkey breakfast sausage (pork sausage is fine too)
  • About 6 cups raw spinach
  • 1/2 tsp garlic granules
  • 1/2 tsp onion granules
  • Dash of nutmeg
  • 1 tsp sea salt, plus more to taste if needed
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 12 eggs, preferably pasture-raised
  • 1/3 cup full-fat coconut milk or heavy cream, if tolerated & preferably from a pasture-raised source
  • 1/4 cup chicken bone broth, preferably homemade
  • 1/2 large roasted delicata squash, cut into 1-inch pieces (leave skin on)
  • 1/2 cup grated raw grass-fed cheddar cheese, if tolerated

egg casserole 3

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the ground breakfast sausage and break up with a spatula. Continue to cook for about 5-7 minutes or until meat is browned, stirring occasionally.
  2. Place the spinach in the bottom of a 9×13 pan (note: you may need to grease your pan with a little butter before adding the spinach. I used a stoneware baking dish that doesn’t stick, but if you’re using glass or stainless steel, I’d recommend greasing it). Stir the sausage into the spinach and make sure it’s evenly distributed.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, coconut milk or heavy cream, bone broth, sea salt, pepper, garlic granules, onion granules and nutmeg. Pour egg mixture on top of the sausage and spinach. Then, evenly distribute the squash pieces on top and sprinkle on the cheddar cheese, if using.
  4. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until eggs are cooked through.

 

Blueberries N’ Cream Scramble

Blueberries N' Cream Scramble.

Blueberry season is in full effect here in Portland and I am loving it! I always look forward to this time of year and take full advantage of any opportunity to gobble up these juicy, sweet morsels. Berry season doesn’t last that long, so I have to savor it while it lasts. Normally, I moderate my fruit intake a bit more, but during berry season I make an exception. Jesse and I usually go up to one of the nearby farms and pick every summer, and we will this year too. I think we may even go this weekend! You may remember my berry picking post from last year.

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This breakfast delight is basically a pancake and scramble hybrid. Its flavors are reminiscent of pancakes, with the cinnamon and vanilla, but the texture is all eggs with fresh pops of blueberry. It’s incredibly delicious and nice when you’re craving something on the sweeter side for breakfast. Pair it with a side of crispy bacon or sausage — then, you’ve got yourself a complete meal!

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 3 pastured eggs, beaten
  • 2-3 tbsp full-fat coconut milk (I like this brand and this brand)
  • Dash of Himalayan sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup fresh blueberries
  • Scoop of coconut butter, for topping

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, beat together the eggs, sea salt, coconut milk, cinnamon, cardamom, and vanilla. Then stir in the fresh blueberries.
  2. Melt the coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once melted, pour in the egg mixture. Allow mixture to cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes or so (to get scrambled pieces).
  3. Once done, remove from pan and place a big dollop of coconut butter on top, allowing it to melt over the hot eggs. Alternatively, you can melt the coconut butter first and then drizzle on top of the eggs.

Yields: 1 serving

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Spicy Scotch Eggs with Creamy Bacon Sauce

Spicy scotch eggs with creamy bacon sauce.
Spicy scotch eggs with creamy bacon sauce.

Rather than studying for my exercise science final exam yesterday, I made these instead. I’ve actually been wanting to try scotch eggs for some time, and it seemed like a great distraction from reality to do so yesterday. I also did a million other things and then finally started studying legitimately around 8 p.m. Not the best plan, I know, but I have so much on my mind. And what’s great, is that I took the exam this morning and am DONE! I did the best that I could and I know I passed, so it is what it is. Now, onto my wedding weekend and celebration! Wahoo! My family arrives late tonight and I can’t wait. There will be lots of glass raising and clinking this weekend!

Meanwhile, go make scotch eggs and dip them in this delicious, fatty sauce.

For the scotch eggs:

  • 5 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1/2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp smoky spice blend, from Practical Paleo (recipe below)
  • 1 Tbsp chorizo spice blend, from Practical Paleo (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Meanwhile, mix meat, spices and vinegar together in a large bowl. Then, form into 5 equal patties. Wrap each patty around a hard-boiled egg and make sure to cover it completely. Place on a baking sheet lined with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes. Serve with creamy bacon sauce.

Smoky Spice Blend:

  • 1 Tbsp chipotle powder
  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp sea salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp black pepper

Mix together and store in a jar or spice container.

Yields: 5 Tbsp

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Chorizo Spice Blend:

  • 2 Tbsp chipotle powder
  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 Tbsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Same directions as above.

Yields: ~6 Tbsp

For the sauce:

  • 1 Tbsp melted bacon grease (mine is from sugar-free grass-fed beef bacon)
  • 1/2 avocado
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1-2 Tbsp full-fat coconut milk
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • 1/2 Tbsp fresh oregano leaves
  • 1/2 – 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/4 tsp raw honey

In a small blender or food processor (I used my Ninja), combine all the ingredients except for the bacon grease. Once smooth, slowly pour in the bacon grease and blend. Adjust seasonings and creaminess as needed. Also, if the bacon flavor isn’t strong enough, feel free to add a bit more melted bacon grease.

Grain-Free Carrot Spice Bread

IMG_3357

It’s been a really, really long time since I’ve made something like this and it’ll probably be a while before it happens again. Don’t get me wrong, the bread is truly rad, but I don’t like having this kind of stuff around very often. It’s definitely a once in a while or special occasion treat.

I was prompted to make this the other day as a way to de-stress and take some downtime for myself. I was also in dire need to stand for a while. I had been at the coffee shop studying and sitting for 2-3 hours and all my body wanted to do afterward is stand and move. I figured, why not make some carrot bread? It seemed like a logical and tasty solution.

The bread came out moist, flavorful and subtly sweet, just the way I like it. It also made the whole house smell comfy and cozy because of the warm spices, so I got the added bonus of aromatherapy. It was just what I needed.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup grass-fed butter, melted
  • 4 pastured eggs, beaten
  • 2-3 Tbsp raw honey
  • 1 Tbsp full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1.5 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a loaf pan with butter or coconut oil. I used this loaf pan, which is a medium size.
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl. In a separate large bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients. Then, add the dry ingredients to the wet, and stir until smooth.
  3. Pour batter into the greased loaf pan and place in preheated oven. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool in pan for about 5 minutes or so, and then carefully remove and place on cooling rack. Let loaf cool for 10-15 minutes more before slicing.
  4. Enjoy with a nice pat of butter spread on top.

Yields: 1 loaf

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Italian Sausage Scramble

Italian sausage scramble.

With the busyness of school, life and work, dinner planning is tough sometimes. Specifically, on nights that Jesse and I both get home at 8 p.m. On these nights, if we don’t have leftovers or something in the slow cooker, dinner is almost always a scramble. It’s fast, easy and always satisfies. Sometimes, due to similar reasons, I make a scramble for myself at lunchtime as well. The other day, I whipped up this little gem. The addition of the marinara makes it extra special and takes it to a whole other level. Feel free to add additional veggies or swap out the kale for something else. That’s another beautiful thing about this scramble…it’s so versatile.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp garlic and herb grass-fed butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 good-quality Italian chicken sausage, sliced
  • 2-3 fresh kale leaves, torn and stemmed
  • 2 pastured eggs, beaten
  • 1/3 cup good quality marinara sauce (make sure it’s unsweetened)
  • 2 Tbsp full-fat coconut milk
  • Pepper to taste
  • Avocado for serving, optional

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a medium-sized skillet over medium heat. Add the sliced sausage and minced garlic, and saute a few minutes, until sausage is browned.
  2. Next, add the chopped kale and saute 30 seconds more. Then, beat the eggs together with the coconut milk, and add to the pan with the marinara. Stir and season to taste with pepper.
  3. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until scramble is cooked through.
  4. Serve with sliced avocado, if desired.

Yields: 1 serving

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5 Paleo Breakfast Ideas

Paleo breakfast burrito from Spoonful of Sugar Free.
Paleo breakfast burrito from Spoonful of Sugar Free.

One of my dear friends recently requested that I post some paleo breakfast ideas. This week, she needs to make all of her breakfasts perfect paleo. She’s already been dabbling in paleo since summertime, so paleo is not foreign to her. Right now, things are just slowly being dialed in for her. This friend is also the one Jason Seib and I are working with for our little project. Anyway, she specifically needs recipes that are not sweetened or as stated in the book, It Starts With Food by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig, of the “sex with your pants on” nature.

I realize, I really don’t do breakfast posts very often, even though breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. I’m such a classic eggs, sausage, veggies and avocado girl that I rarely concoct an actual breakfast dish or recipe. This is a good reminder for me to work on some breakfast ideas. Regardless, there are a lot of awesome paleo breakfast ideas out there. Here are some I found that look delicious and don’t fall into the sweetened or “sex with your pants on” category. Most of these recipes can be made ahead of time and reheated or even eaten cold, so if you don’t have a lot of time in the morning, plan ahead!

If you get sick of eggs or cannot tolerate eggs, try dinner leftovers as an easy breakfast. If you usually don’t have leftovers, try making a larger quantity at dinner, so you do have leftovers. It’s not uncommon for me to eat leftover chicken soup, stew, etc. in the morning for breakfast, and it makes busy mornings really easy. Remember, breakfast doesn’t have to look like traditional breakfast.

I’ve done recipe roundups before, so maybe you already know the drill. If not, click on each photo to get to the recipe. Enjoy, and let me know if you try any of these recipes out!

Speckled egg wraps from The Cavery.
Speckled egg wraps from The Cavery.
Quick paleo breakfast muffins from PaleoMunch.
Quick paleo breakfast muffins from PaleoMunch.
Paleo breakfast casserole from Paleo Effect.
Paleo breakfast casserole from Paleo Effect. Use squash instead of sweet potato for SCD.
Banana bacon scramble from katie did.
Banana bacon scramble from katie did.