Thursday, May 27, 2010

Quick Sauteed Scallops & Kale Dinner

This was a quick and easy Paleo meal. Today's CrossFit WOD totally wiped me out, and all I've been thinking about since my 10 am class, was ... BED! I scoured the cupboards and refrigerator and came up with this easy (ingredients on hand) meal. Not too shabby. It has the potential to be great. But tonight, I just needed good. This fit the bill perfectly.
... hope you enjoy!

1 bunch kale, pulled from stem and torn in large pieces
1/2 yellow pepper
garlic, 2 cloves, minced
Shallots, diced (about 1/4 C)
1/4 C white wine
1 T lemon juice
1/2 lb. scallops (about 14 large)
2 T olive oil, divided
black pepper and sea salt (optional)

Heat 1 T olive oil in pan. Sprinkle salt and pepper over scallops. Saute scallops for about 5 minutes, until no longer raw looking. Remove, and set aside. In the same pan, add some more olive oil and saute shallots until they're slightly transparent. Add garlic, saute a couple minutes, and then add the yellow bell pepper... saute a few more minutes. Add wine to the pan, scraping all the flavored bits. Now add the kale and lemon juice. Cover and cook for about 5-8 minutes. When kale is done, add the scallops back to the pan and cook just a bit longer (2-3 minutes).
Garnish with a bit of fresh ground black pepper and serve! Quick - Easy - Paleo ! Enjoy !

Have a wonderful and safe Memorial Weekend!

*Don't forget... next week is the last week of the Paleo challenge!
Make plans to finalize your stats!!! See you next week! :-)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Chicken Salad on Wheat Free Crust

I got this great recipe idea from my friend, Neile, who got the idea from Marks Daily Apple. I think I got the recipe all mixed up, but it still tasted great and is just a fabulous lunch idea! I get requests for lunches a lot, but I just don't post much. I typically eat my dinner leftovers for lunch. But this could be made up ahead of time as a snack option or when you just don't have the leftovers! Ok... the wheat free crust was fantastic (albeit a little pricey). It is available at Whole Foods and New Leaf Markets for about $4.50 for a package of two crusts. I highly recommend it though. I thought it could even be broken up in pieces and eaten like crackers?! Kind of fun and different. Hope you enjoy! :-)

Chicken Salad Recipe:

12.5 oz can chicken breast chunks, packed in water
1 avocado
1 small apple, diced
1/2 C slivered almonds
1/4 red onion, diced
1 T lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
pepper and sea salt to taste (optional)

Drain chicken breast. Put in a bowl and with a fork mash avocado and chicken chunks together.
Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Spread over the top of the wheat free crust and enjoy! Very filling and very tasty! A lot of flexibility with the ingredients! I think Neile actually used grapes (cut in half) instead of apples and she used walnuts instead of almonds! Just like a good Crossfit wod, modifications can always be made!!! :-)

** PALEO CHALLENGERS! I can NOT believe it, but next week is the last week of the challenge! Make arrangements during your crossfit classes to do your benchmark wods! These will easily be ran for you upon your request! Also, make arrangements to get your final photo taken with me. I'll have my camera handy! :-))

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Baked Chicken With Artichoke Hearts & Tomatoes

My daughter helped me come up with tonight's dinner. We concocted, upon her requests, a chicken dish utilizing her favorite ingredients (artichoke hearts, tomatoes, and lemon). I'm not exaggerating when I say she loves those ingredients. She requested I pack sliced tomatoes in her school lunches! ...OH she makes me proud!!! My kids have become very accustomed to the term "Paleo" and quite often ask me, "what's our Paleo dinner for tonight, Mom?" I must say that I LOVE this! It is very rewarding to think about how the Paleo diet is not only benefitting me, my husband and our CrossFit endeavors, but benefitting our children and their long-term health as well! My daughter is even reading food labels! She's (almost) 14! It's an example of nutrition... a way of life... and NOT a diet. I'm very proud of my healthy little eaters, and LOVE having a new assistant recipe creator! This recipe is compliments of Molly. :-))

14 oz. can artichoke hearts, drained
1 lemon, juice from one lemon
3/4 C white wine
3/4 C cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
1/2 C fresh basil leaves, chopped
6 chicken breasts, skinless, boneless, trimmed of visible fat AND slightly pounded
Sprinkle breasts (both sides) with:
Garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat a skillet with 1 T olive oil. Brown seasoned chicken breasts in olive oil. When golden brown, both sides, place place chicken breasts in baking dish. Surround chicken with artichoke hearts. Now, deglaze the saucepan with wine & lemon juice. Add tomatoes and basil. Pour sauce over chicken breasts and bake for about 20 minutes. We served this with some steamed zucchini. VERY good... and yielded lots of leftovers! Hope you enjoy! :-)

Monday, May 24, 2010

Paleo Teriyaki Tri-Tip

If you have been missing the taste of Teriyaki when marinating meats, then you will be SO happy with this recipe. Wow, this was good, and just in time for barbecue season (if Spring and Summer ever arrive, that is)! We heard rain was in the forecast, so we decided to barbecue while we could. The secret to this recipe is coconut! Raw Coconut Aminos. I found it at Whole Foods... A perfect soy sauce substitute! This is my new "must-have" for the Paleo pantry!

1/4-1/2 C Coconut Aminos
1 T fresh ginger, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
1 T agave nectar (if you're opposed to using agave nectar, I thought 1/4 C pineapple juice would work well as a sweetener, too)

1-2 lbs. Tri-Tip, trimmed of visible fat

Marinate Tri-Tip for 8 hours (or longer... overnight would be best!)

We like to grill our Tri-Tip on med-hi heat for about 30 minutes (browning all sides), then move Tri-tip to a lower temperature for the next 30-45 minutes (until internal temperature reaches 145). Remove the Tri-tip and let it sit for about 5 minutes (the Temperature will continue to climb). This is a good method to maintain all the flavors while keeping the meat tender and juicy. Hope you enjoy!

We served this with a side of grilled pineapple and golden beets! I wasn't sure how the beets would turn out on the grill, but they were great! The pineapple was awesome! Scott just sliced a fresh pineapple in long slices and grilled them. It was the perfect compliment to this meal!
I hope you'll give this Paleo teriyaki marinade a try! Don't forget to pick up a bottle of that raw coconut aminos the next time you're at whole foods! :-)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Buffalo Burgers

Finally my turn on the computer! My night was filled with homework projects (a 5th grade state report & an 8th grade US history report). Tonight I could better tell you about the assassination of President Lincoln or interesting facts about the state of Louisiana than anything Paleo! This was a perfect dinner for distractions. It was quick, easy and completely uncomplicated... oh and totally satisfying!

Ground Buffalo, about 1 pound
Seasoned with some black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder.
Form into about 4- 4 oz. patties
1 sweet potato, cut in wedges (Did you know Louisiana is a huge producer of sweet potatoes!)
Seasoned with garlic powder, black pepper, and sea salt (optional) Bake at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes!
I had an eggplant that needed to get used! So I sliced it, coated it with a little olive oil, seasoned it with the same spices, and grilled it next to the buffalo burgers.
Then, I served everything with some sliced tomatoes, red onion, and romaine lettuce leaves!

Then we all snacked on some fresh strawberries for dessert! ....Love the fruit this time of year!
Hope you enjoy!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Put the Lime on the Pork Chops & Add Some Coconut

Put the lime in the coconut and eat it all up! I promise this meal won't give you a belly ache and you won't have to call he doctor in the morning! This was the perfect cure for my Monday, which started out a little relentless! Rain in May (weird), CrossFit (doozy), kids school projects (multiple), car repair (bummer)... But a new delicious paleo pork chop recipe is the silver lining in our May rain-clouds! Lime, pineapple, cilantro, and coconut are such fun and fresh flavors! A tasty combination that just might take your mind off any Monday woes you have (for awhile anyway). Come on Tuesday! What have you got? :-)

4 pork chops, trimmed of all visible fat
3 limes
8 oz. can crushed pineapple (in its own juice)
1/4 C cilantro, chopped
2 tsp. fresh ginger, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 C Coconut milk (low fat from Trader Joe's)
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
pinch sea salt (optional)
1 T Coconut oil (or olive oil)
1 head cauliflower
6 macadamia nuts, slightly crushed
Avocado slices

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Trim pork chops and marinate (for at least 30 minutes) in: Juice of 2 limes, just the juice from the can of crushed pineapples, cayenne pepper, ground ginger and salt.
While that's marinating.... Prepare your cauliflower rice and set aside. I use a food processor with the grater attachment. Wash and trim leaves off cauliflower. Cut in big chunks, and grate to a rice-like consistency. Heat, keep warm and set aside.
In a sauce pan, heat 1 tsp. coconut oil (or olive oil). Saute garlic and ginger until it starts to brown. Add coconut milk, crushed pineapple, and the juice of 1 lime. Simmer.
In a large saute pan heat 2 tsp. coconut oil (or olive oil). Brown pork chops (about 4 minutes on each side... until golden brown). Remove to a baking dish. Pour coconut milk mixture over pork chops. Sprinkle with fresh cilantro. Bake for about 12-15 minutes. Serve over a bed of cauliflower rice. Sprinkle the top with some crushed macadamia nuts. Garnish with fresh cilantro and avocado slices. Hope you enjoy!

*Paleo Challengers! There are only TWO WEEKS left!!! I've heard (and seen) some great feedback in the gym! Start thinking about re-running your benchmark WODs and getting your final photo! :-)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tri-Tip Thursday!

This is one of our favorite cuts of meat! A great meat for the grill... Let the barbecue season begin! Using spice rubs is a great way (an easy way) to change up your grilling flavors! The weather is looking up so, I hope we're in for a lot more grilling in our future! Enjoy.

Scott's Tri-Tip Spice Rub (ground together in a mortar & pestle):
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. parsley flakes
1/2 tsp. Celtic grey sea salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. mustard seed
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
1/4 tsp. ground sage
1/4 tsp. thyme

1.5 to 2 lb. Tri-Tip

Trim the tri-tip of all visible fat. Rub the spiced mixture all over the tri-tip. Heat your grill to a high temperature and sear the meat on both sides (about 4-5 minutes). Turn the barbecue down low, and leave the tri-tip on for about another 6 minutes per side. Our tri-tip was on the small side (not quite enough for a hungry family of 4), so cooking times will vary depending on the size of the meat. The internal temperature should be 145 degrees. (The temperature continues to climb after you take it off the grill... so allow for that, too.)

We served this with a side salad and some baked sweet potatoes (two varieties for color contrast). Hope you enjoy! :-)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Baked Artichokes

This was such a GREAT alternative to our usual steaming method of cooking artichokes. These were SO much more flavorful. We all LOVED them. The lemon was SUCH a great compliment to all the flavors. I will definitely be making these again! (They were good cold the next day, too). Hope you enjoy!!!

4 smallish artichokes
1/2 C chicken broth, organic, low sodium
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lemon
3-4 basil leaves, chopped
1/4 tsp. ground pepper
pinch sea salt (optional)
1-2 tsp. olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Trim all the sharp leaves off the artichokes. Cut the artichokes down the center, clean out all the fuzzies, and small leaves with a spoon. Immediately, rub/squeeze some lemon juice over the center cut areas of the artichokes (this keeps them from oxidizing). In a small bowl combine lemon juice (from what's left of the one lemon), garlic, basil, olive oil, pepper and salt. Mix well and rub ALL over the artichokes (outside, inside, and between the leaves). Coat a baking dish with a little olive oil and place the artichokes, cut side down, on the dish. Pour chicken broth over the artichokes, cover with foil, and bake for 45-50 minutes (until soft and tender). Enjoy!

Okay... So, I confess, we had those yummy artichokes last night! Tonight, however, was take-out!... I sent a 'SOS' text to my husband that he better pick up dinner if he wanted to eat. I just couldn't muster up any energy to do the job tonight! Too many deadlifts today? My "hammies" were in NO mood to cook... yeah, that's it! :-)
Anyway, he did great on my request. He stopped at Jia Tella's... a great Cambodian restaurant in Scotts Valley! They have a lot of gluten-free options on their menu (the trick is staying away from the soy). I got the Salmon Mango ... which was wonderful and Paleo!
Thanks, honey! :-)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Spicy Paleo Mexican Frittata

With all the leftover ingredients I had from last week's Mexican Fiesta, I decided to make a frittata! I'm loving the frittata, and there are SO many options and variations... It never gets boring. Not to mention, it's just a delicious protein bomb that packs in a lot of excellent snacks... for days!!! Hope you enjoy! :-)

1 lb. Chorizo sausage
1 can diced green chilies
20 large black olives, sliced
12 eggs
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 chipotle peppers, chopped
Fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. cumin
sea salt (optional) & fresh ground pepper

I used my favorite 12 inch cast iron skillet for this recipe. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In skillet (cast iron OR any oven safe skillet) over medium heat, cook chorizo (be sure to remove casing) until crumbly. Remove from pan. Add onions, bell pepper, chipotle and saute in sausage drippings. Cook thoroughly for about 8 minutes. Add sausage, can of diced chilies, and black olives back to pan, and mix well over medium-low heat. While that's cooking, in a separate bowl, whisk eggs, and season with oregano, cumin, chopped cilantro, salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture into skillet, DO NOT MIX, and cook for about 10 minutes.
Then place entire skillet in oven for another 6-10 minutes until frittata is lightly brown on top and egg is well set. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Carefully cut into 8 slices. Delicious topped with avocado slices and some salsa!
Don't forget to wrap up the leftover slices with some saran wrap for some awesome protein snacks! Or freeze them for later! Enjoy!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Paleo Custard

I was craving a sweet custard-type flan dessert to finish off my Mexican week of cookery! This was just what I was seeking and a perfect little dessert to share with friends! This recipe does contain honey and/or agave nectar. So, this may not be a desired dessert if those ingredients are not acceptable to your Paleo plan. This recipe is taken from Mark's daily apple. It was pretty easy to make and turned out really well. I wouldn't change a thing. We all loved it! Hope you enjoy! :-)


5 eggs

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 C almond milk

1/4 C agave nectar or honey

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

6 ramekins (oven safe baking cups)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

In a saucepan, combine the milk and agave nectar. Bring to a simmer. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and vanilla until yolks are very smooth. Add the warm milk and agave to the eggs, whisk together until well combined. Pour egg mixture (I used a ladle) so it evenly settles into each ramekin. Place ramekins in a baking dish big enough so the dessert cups don’t touch one another. Pour warm water into the baking dish so that it is level with the custard on the outside. The water prevents the custard from burning. Slide the pan into the oven and bake until custards are set around the edges, about 40 minutes. Refrigerate them for later or serve them right away, warm!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Tequila Lime Skirt Steak

Marinade to the rescue... again! I marinaded this wonderful skirt steak this morning and came home to a wonderful barbecue dinner tonight! This was SO good (and a kid favorite, too). What a week for eating! Maybe Paleo-Mexican cuisine is not out of the question after all! I had a blast cooking with a theme this week! It even made shopping easier, too. Maybe I should do this more often!?
I bought our skirt steak from the Corralitos Market and Sausage Company! Great place! They even have ostrich, venison, and buffalo! Perfect for Paleo shoppers (and not too out of the way). I'm not sure if tonight's dinner success was due to their excellent meat quality, Scott's barbecue abilities, or my marinade! :-) .... Hope you enjoy!

1.5 lb. skirt steak

1/2 C tequila
3 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
Fresh juice from 2 limes
3 T olive oil
Chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. cumin
Pinch sea salt (optional)

Add all ingredients, and meat, to a zip lock bag. Seal and refrigerate for about 8-10 hours.
Barbecue to desired doneness.

We served this with a side of yellow squash, onion and pepper side dish (very tasty)!
Heat skillet with 2 tsp. olive oil. Saute 1 onion, sliced. Add 1 red bell pepper, sliced, and continue to saute. Add yellow squash (cut lengthwise, and in half). Cover with a lid (stirring occasionally), until squash is just tender with fork. Toss with some fresh chopped cilantro! Great side dish for this meal! Muy Delicioso!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Paleo Chicken Enchilada Bake

Happy Cinco de Mayo! CrossFit Santa Cruz Central sure found a BRUTAL way to celebrate! Wow... heavy & hard, that's all I can say. It just kicked my butt, and wiped me out! Tonight's dinner, however, did bring me some much deserved comfort...because it was just SO delicious! This recipe was forwarded to me and is from another Paleo-Crossfit site (in the Windy City)... So, thank you Chicago (and Neile for a great recipe find). If you've been missing enchiladas, then give this a try! We really enjoyed this recipe, and I know we're going to really appreciate all the leftovers, too! Enjoy mi amigas! :-)

1-2 small chipotle peppers, chopped (from a can of chipotles in adobo sauce), plus 1-2 tsp. adobo sauce
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. ground chili pepper
2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
pinch sea salt (optional)
2 C organic chicken broth, low sodium
3 C (or 3 8oz. cans) organic tomato sauce, no added salt

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low/simmer while you prepare everything else.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees!

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T olive oil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

1 head cauliflower, shredded with food processor until rice-like consistency
Fresh cilantro, chopped

Boil chicken breasts in water for about 8-10 minutes. Remove from water, and with two forks shred chicken into pieces. Set aside. Heat olive oil in large skillet. Saute onion, until transparent, add garlic, bell pepper, and spices. Saute a little longer to combine flavors. Add shredded chicken to the skillet, and mix together. Now add sauce to the chicken skillet ... RESERVING 1/4 C sauce for the cauliflower rice. Mix well.

Put cauliflower rice in the bottom of a baking dish. Add 1/4 C of the sauce. Mix well. This is the bottom layer of your enchilada bake. Now add the remaining chicken/sauce mixture over the cauliflower. Cover with tin foil and bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove foil, and bake for another 10 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh chopped cilantro. Serve with avocado slices, too! Ahhhh.... it was a perfect Cinco de Mayo meal! Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

South of the Border Grilled Mahi Mahi

Hola! I'm keepin' it south of the border this week! My frig is packed with peppers, cilantro, tomatoes, avocados & limes. My Pantry is packed with cumin, coriander, garlic and chile! Muy Delicioso!
Here is a recipe recommended to me from CrossFit Santa Cruz Central's Amenah Razeghi. Assuming you like to shop at Trader Joe's (don't we all?)... this is a one stop meal!
This was SO good, Amenah! Thank you!

Frozen mahi mahi package from TJ's
Papaya Mango Salsa, 15oz. in refrigerated section of TJ's
1/4 C lime juice
Chopped fresh cilantro, about 3 T
Crushed garlic, about 3 cloves
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. black pepper
pinch sea salt

Add frozen fish and marinade together in a zip lock bag. Refrigerate all day (turning occasionally). I used my grill pan to cook stove top, but it can also be barbecued! Heat pan, coated with olive oil, to med/hi heat. Grill fish for about 5 minutes on each side. Top with papaya mango salsa and serve!

Amenah served this (and so did I) with grilled zucchini. Which you can either grill along side the mahi mahi or broil. Coat zucchini with lime juice, olive oil, and sprinkle with some cumin and black pepper! Cook 'til crisp/tender.

I also served this with a side salad (tossed with more cilantro, avocado, radishes, cucumber, and tomatoes) and leftover cauliflower rice from yesterday! What an awesome meal! Hope you enjoy! ...We sure did!
Thanks again, Amenah! :-)

Monday, May 3, 2010

Paleo Chicken Mole

Holy 'Mole' this was GOOD!!!
Cinco De Mayo is just a couple days away, and I have a serious hankering for some good Mexican food! This was a great way to start out the week! I promise you this was heavenly, satisfying and hit the spot. It took a little time to make, (not too bad), but was well worth it! Hope you like it as much as we did! It's a new favorite (I'm already anxiously awaiting tomorrows leftovers)...
Yum yum yum... enjoy! :-)

2 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 can diced tomatoes (no added salt)
1 bell pepper, chopped
2 chipotle peppers, chopped
8 oz. chicken broth (organic, low sodium)
2 T almond butter
2 T organic cacao powder, unsweetened
6 skinless boneless chicken breasts
1 head cauliflower (for the rice)
1 avocado, sliced
fresh cilantro, chopped (for garnish)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat oil in pan, and saute onions until translucent. Add garlic and spices. Continue to saute so that spices toast and enhance flavors! Add diced tomatoes, peppers, chipotles, broth, almond butter, and cocao. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Cool slightly, and puree in blender or food processor. Set aside...
Heat a heavy skillet with olive oil on medium high heat. Trim chicken breasts and sprinkle with some black pepper & cumin. Sear the chicken breasts, on both sides, until browned. Add to a casserole or baking dish. Cover chicken breasts with the mole sauce (reserve about 1/4 C mole sauce to add to cauliflower rice). Bake for 50-60 minutes. Serve over a bed of cauliflower rice. Garnish with slices of avocado and fresh chopped cilantro!

Cauliflower rice:
Chop 1 head cauliflower in food processor. Add 1/4 C mole sauce, mix well. Cover and heat to desired temperature. (I usually just cover in saran wrap and microwave for a few minutes).
No need to add water!


CrossFit Santa Cruz Central