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

 

 

One-Pan Roasted Veggies & Sausage

 

veggies-and-sausageCan’t beat a simple, one-pan meal. It makes for an easy lunch or dinner and involves little fuss, other than chopping the vegetables. But, that’s a very small task to accomplish to create a healthy meal.

Feel free to make this dish your own by using the veggies, sausage and seasonings that you like. It’s easy to customize and leaves lots of room for variety. In terms of the sausage, I used Aidells Artichoke & Garlic Chicken Sausage, but an Italian variety (Applegate makes a good one) would be great too.

On another note, my 32nd birthday is today! Cheers, joy and well wishes to me! And, on yet another note, my husband and I leave for Iceland this Sunday! We will be there for a full week. It’s going to be majestic! The first stop once we arrive (at 6:45 a.m. their time) is the Blue Lagoon to restore, relax and kick the jet lag. We’re getting shuttled straight there from the airport. Expect some beautiful photos to ensue soon!

Ingredients:

  • 2 large carrots, sliced into 1/4″ rounds
  • 2 small-medium white sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 2 small heads broccoli, chopped into florets (peel and chop stem too)
  • 16 oz package artichoke & garlic or Italian chicken sausage, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 2-3 Tbsp avocado oil or melted coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp granulated onion or onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • Pinch of cayenne

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. On a large baking sheet, mix together the chopped veggies (make sure pieces are uniform for even cooking), minced garlic, sliced shallot and sliced sausage.
  3. In a small dish, mix the melted coconut oil (or avocado oil) with the apple cider vinegar, oregano, thyme, parsley, cayenne, granulated onion (or onion powder), sea salt and black pepper. Pour over vegetable mixture and toss with tongs to coat.
  4. Place pan in preheated oven and bake for 20 minutes. Stir and place back in oven for another 20 minutes or until vegetables are cooked through and tender.

Simple Supper Friday: Sirloin Green Curry

Sirloin green curry.

Remember the sirloin curry I mentioned in Monday’s post? Well, here it is, as promised! If you don’t already know, I have a weakness for curries and just can’t seem to get enough. Curries are often one of my defaults and always seem to satisfy. I guess I have a big place for curries in my heart. I prefer to eat my curry over zucchini noodles, but cauliflower rice works too. Heck, you can really eat it on top of any vegetable.

On another note, I have some fun things planned this weekend. Tomorrow starts out with some time at Clackamas Physical Conditioning with Jason Seib and then afterward, Jesse and I are having lunch at Dick’s Kitchen with a friend of ours (also a client of Jesse’s) and her husband, who we’ll be meeting for the first time. They’ve never eaten at Dick’s, so they’re in for a real treat! I always look forward to a good grass-fed burger there. When I was there last a few weeks back, I had my first experience with an elk burger and it was fantastic. It did not disappoint.

Aside from that, Jesse and I both work briefly Sunday morning and then talked about going for another round of blueberry picking later in the day. We might not pick as much as we did a couple weeks ago (15 lb), but want to get at least half that amount. We want to add to our supply in the freezer, but keep a little bit more out for eating this time around.

Also, I wouldn’t mind going back to Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider taproom in our neighborhood and having another cider. This sounds like a good Saturday thing to do, after a nice long walk . Jesse, if you’re reading this, it’s a big hint.

Oh, and get this, I have jury duty on Monday and Tuesday. I was summoned a few weeks back. I’m not really looking forward to being confined and sitting all day, but hopefully I’ll get out early or won’t be a fit for the case. I won’t find out until they do the questioning that first day though. If I do have to stay, I’m at least hoping for an interesting case!

What are your plans for the weekend? Have you ever served for jury duty?

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Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, sliced in half moons
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 1 lb petite top sirloin, thinly sliced
  • 1 13.5 oz can full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp green curry paste (I use this brand)
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1/2 small head cauliflower, cut into medium-sized florets
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 8 oz can bamboo shoots, drained
  • 2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped (use Thai basil if you can find it)
  • Sliced green onions, optional

Directions:

  1. Melt coconut oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat. Add the garlic, jalapeno and onion. Saute a couple minutes and then add the sliced sirloin. Continue to saute for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, curry paste, coconut aminos and cayenne. Add to the pan with the meat and onion mixture, and stir.
  3. Add the carrot, cabbage and cauliflower and stir. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat and cook for 5 minutes or so, stirring occasionally.
  4. Next, stir in the bamboo shoots and stir. Once heated through, mix in the chopped basil.
  5. Serve straight up or atop of zucchini noodles. Garnish with green onion, if using.

Yields: 4-5 servings

Creamy Chicken Dijon

creamy chicken dijon updated

I am relieved to say that my exercise science midterm is over! It is such a relief to have that thing off my mind or at least not to have to study for it anymore. I admit that it is still on my mind a little bit. I can’t help but wonder how I did and have gone over some of the questions in my head (and even checked an answer in my book…don’t let me do that anymore. It made me upset!). I realized I made a couple dumb mistakes, but in the moment, I took a chance because I was unsure. Whatever. I know I passed and I studied my buns off, so hopefully it paid off and at least scored me a B. I’m pretty confident that I got at least that, but who knows, maybe I did even better!

Studying for that blasted exam is what the majority of my weekend consisted of. The weather was so nice and sunny, which made it challenging, but I took advantage of studying outside on the patio. Really, I just wanted to hang out outdoors, bum around on my bike and drink wine. I got the outdoors, did ride some on my bike (commuting), but didn’t drink wine. I needed clarity, so I stuck with kombucha and memory boost tea. As you probably know by now, I very rarely drink, but there’s something about warm weather that makes me want to, particularly when the weather first starts turning summery.

Jason’s event at Whole Foods on Saturday was a lot of fun and a nice break from studying. There ended up being a smaller group than expected because a couple people cancelled last minute and some didn’t show up, which I attribute to the warm weather, but it was a success among those there and nice to have a small group. Naturally, it ran over because there was a lot of questions and much to talk about in only one hour’s time. Everyone was very engaged and Jason was entertaining and brilliant, as always. Honestly, that guy cracks me up, but man he knows his stuff! It’s always a pleasure to listen to him speak. To all my readers and followers who have not bought his book, The Paleo Coach, I strongly encourage you to do so. His message and information is too valuable not to share.

Here are a couple pictures from the event. Ashley, Whole Foods Pearl District’s Healthy Eating Specialist and blogger at Craving4more, also put together a neat picture from the talk on her Instagram, which you can check out here.

The spread of paleo dishes that Ashley, the Healthy Foods Specialist made for the event. She also blogs over at Craving4more.
The spread of paleo food that Ashley, the Healthy Foods Specialist made for the event (with the exception of the date and honey-sweetened Stirs the Soul raw chocolate — my favorite!). She also blogs over at Craving4more.
Jason, doing what he does.
Jason, doing what he does.

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Meanwhile, I’m still really loving mustard, particularly Dijon. It makes a difference in so many recipes and is often the missing flavor I’m looking for. It tantalized my taste buds once again, in this recipe. Hope you enjoy it!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp grass-fed beef tallow or fat of choice
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts and/or thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1.5 cups chopped broccoli
  • 1/2 cup zucchini, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard 
  • 3 Tbsp chicken bone broth
  • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk

Directions:

  1. Melt tallow in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and saute for a minute. Then, add the chicken and season with a bit of sea salt and pepper.
  2. Continue to cook for about 5-6 minutes, and then add the spices, carrots, broccoli and a bit more sea salt and pepper. Stir well and continue to saute.
  3. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, broth and Dijon. Add mixture to the chicken and vegetables; stir.
  4. Continue to cook for 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender. The sauce will thicken up a bit as well.
  5. Serve as is or with steamed leafy greens, cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles.

Yields: 3 servings

Simple Supper Friday: Mandarin Beef Stir Fry

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Whew, it’s been a busy day so far! I slept in until a little after 7 and then got up, changed, gathered my goods and drove to the food cart to replenish my treats. I was there about 90 minutes, then came home for a cup of green tea and a short bit of downtime before heading to Recreate for a 10 a.m. workout. I foam rolled and chatted with Jesse after the workout, and it was about 11:30 when I got home. Then, I cooked a big breakfast/brunch/lunch, whatever you want to call it (my first meal of the day) and enjoyed it in solitude. Now, it’s blogging and doing some other work at home. Then, after I finish my work, it’s on to studying exercise science and working on my homework. That class is really hard and complex, and I often feel lost when the teacher is lecturing. That equates to a lot of outside studying time to understand and know it!

Regarding the recipe, I’ve been getting a lot of citrus in my CSA boxes lately (grapefruit, oranges, mandarin oranges, etc.) and sometimes it ends up going bad before I use it. Jesse and I aren’t big citrus fruit eaters, so even if we do eat it, it takes effort and time to get through it. We like it, but it’s just not our preferred fruit that we would pick out ourselves. I actually don’t like grapefruit period, so Jesse is always responsible for those.

Anyway, as a means to use up some of the mandarin oranges we recently got in our box, I added some fresh-squeezed mandarin juice to this stir fry. I figured it would work well and boy, did it ever! I know it sounds generic, but the stir fry tasted so good with the mandarin juice. It really helped bring all the flavors together, and added a nice subtle sweetness. We ate our stir fry over scallion cauliflower rice (recipe below), but zucchini noodles or leafy greens would work as well. Heck, you can even eat it by itself.

For the stir fry:

  • 1/2 Tbsp grass-fed tallow
  • 1/2 lb grass-fed skirt steak, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup shitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 3-4 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • Splash of low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 mandarin orange, juiced
  • Splash of rice vinegar (yes, it’s okay!)
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  1. Melt the tallow in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and celery and let saute a couple minutes. Then, add the skirt steak and season with a little sea salt and pepper.
  2. Continue to cook a couple minutes, then add the mushrooms and carrots. Saute one minute more, then add the coconut aminos, mandarin orange juice, rice vinegar and red pepper flakes. Stir well, then after a minute or so, add the broccoli.
  3. Continue to cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Once sauce has thickened up a little bit, after about 3-5 minutes, remove from heat and serve over scallion cauliflower rice (recipe below).

Yields: 2-3 servings

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For the scallion cauliflower rice:

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 Tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 2-3 scallions (green onion), chopped
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  1. Add cauliflower to the food processor and pulse until it’s completely riced. If need be, you can do this in batches, depending on the size of your food processor.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Then, add the cauliflower rice and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Continue to cook a few minutes until cauliflower is heated through. If you like your cauli rice a little browned, you can cook it a bit longer.
  3. Stir in the chopped scallions and serve.

Yields: 4-5 servings

Simple Supper Friday: Skirt Steak Stir Fry

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It’s been a really long time since I made stir fry, and this recipe really hit the spot. I remember trying a stir fry variation a while back, but it was only okay. I think it’s because it was missing the salty flavor of soy sauce, tamari or coconut aminos. Soy sauce and tamari are both out for me because of the wheat and soy, and I avoided coconut aminos up until recently because they’re considered questionable on the SCD. Since I’m 1-1/2 years in on my healing process, I thought I’d give the coconut aminos a shot. Lucky for me, I had no problems. I used to cook with coconut aminos prior to eating SCD/paleo, because I learned a long time ago that wheat/gluten was not okay for me. Needless to say, I’m happy to have a bottle back in my refrigerator.

This recipe is flexible in the sense that you can use any protein or veggies that you like. I definitely recommend trying it with the skirt steak though. It works great for stir fry and cooks up quickly because of its thin nature. Plus, it’s oh so flavorful. I think I’ve said this before, but it’s one of my favorite cuts of beef.

This is great served with chopped raw cashews and/or green onion, and with an extra drizzle of coconut aminos. I’m not a sesame seed fan, but that would work well as a garnish too.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil, plus extra for eggs
  • 1 lb grass-fed skirt steak, sliced into strips
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup shitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 medium broccoli crown, chopped
  • 1 8 oz can sliced water chestnuts
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos, plus extra if needed
  • 1-2 Tbsp rice vinegar (yes, rice vinegar is okay!)
  • Splash of good-quality chicken broth
  • Dash of red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 pastured eggs, beaten

Directions:

  1. Melt coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and celery, and saute about 1 minute. Then add the skirt steak strips and season with a little sea salt and pepper. Continue to saute for a couple minutes.
  2. Then, add the carrots, broccoli and mushrooms. Add the coconut aminos, rice vinegar, chicken broth and red pepper flakes. Continue to cook over medium-low heat.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add a little coconut oil to the pan and once melted, add the beaten eggs. Allow to cook for a few minutes. Once it starts to set, lift the edges of the omelet with a spatula to allow some of the egg liquid to get underneath. When the omelet is stable enough, flip and allow to cook an additional minute. Remove from pan and place on cutting board to cool.
  4. Add the water chestnuts to the stir fry and stir. Turn heat down to low. Slice the cooled omelet into strips, then chop into small pieces. Add to the stir fry.
  5. Once everything is heated through and veggies are softened, but still slightly crisp, remove from heat. Serve over cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles (use a julienne peeler to make noodles). If desired, you can mix the cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles into the stir fry and then serve. Top with garnishes of choice and extra coconut aminos, if desired.

Yields: 4 servings

 

Simple Supper Friday: Turkey Cabbage Stew with Multicolored Carrots

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Turkey cabbage stew with roasted multicolored carrots.

Another week of school down (hooray!), and I must say, this week went by extremely fast. I’m okay with that too. As much as I’m trying to enjoy the process, I’m really ready for this term to be over. Being busy definitely helps the time fly by though. Full-time school, part-time fitness coaching, part-time freelance writing, blogging, treat making at the food cart, working on a project with Jason Seib, and life. I may even be taking on another project, which will be determined later today. I might be burning the candle at both ends a tad, but it’s awesome to be a busy little bee. I’m learning so much, especially about myself, and I feel ready for the next big thing.

Meanwhile, the sun is shining bright today and it’s a high of 60 degrees. I’ve already had a chance to enjoy the sunshine a little bit, but I’m hoping to get outside later for a walk. I have tons to do, but 60 and sunny is a great excuse to take a break.

Happy Friday all!

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground turkey thighs
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp fat of choice (I used grass-fed tallow)
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 head cabbage, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 2-4 Tbsp chicken broth
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk

Directions:

  1. While your carrots are roasting (see instructions below), get started on the stew. In a large pan over medium heat, melt your fat of choice. Add the garlic and saute about 20-30 seconds, or until fragrant. Next, add the ground turkey and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Be sure to break up the ground meat a bit with a spatula.
  2. After several minutes, when the meat is nearly done browning, add the cabbage, cardamom, chili powder, broth and coconut milk. Mix well and continue to simmer over medium-low heat for several minutes. Adjust seasonings and liquid as needed.
  3. Once done, serve into bowls and top with roasted carrots.

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For the roasted carrots:

  • 1 bunch multicolored carrots (about 5-7 carrots), chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 Tbsp fat of choice, melted (I used a combo of grass-fed tallow and ghee)
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 375. On a baking sheet, toss carrots with fat of choice, and season with sea salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes or until tender and slightly browned.
  2. Serve atop of turkey and cabbage mixture.

Yields: 3-4 servings

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