Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Prosciutto Wrapped Pork Chops With Sage Leaves

I don't know about the rest of you, but CrossFit has worked me this week so far! And I love it!! It's weeks like these when I really appreciate and can put to the test... my Paleo ways!!!
Results . results . results! Are you seeing them???

I felt tonight's dinner was a simple Paleo success. Scott said there is no way anyone will believe this was quick and easy... but I will tell you that is truly was! It also turned out very presentable, too, and I would comfortably serve this meal to guests! :-)
Hope you enjoy!

6-8 pork loin chops, trimmed of all visible fat
16-18 sage leaves (I was fortunate enough to have some growing in my garden!)
1 package Prosciutto, 4-6 oz. (preferably natural prosciutto free of nitrates and antibiotics!)
black pepper
garlic powder
onion powder
olive oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Trim pork chops and sprinkle with black pepper, garlic and onion powder. Place sage leave on top of pork chops and wrap prosciutto around pork. Spread a little olive oil over a baking dish. Place pork chops in dish, prosciutto seam side down. Bake for about 25-35 minutes. Pork is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. It turned out so pretty! We served this with some cooked Japanese sweet potatoes, and a garden salad. Very Tasty!

* Paleo challengers... the results are in! Stay tuned for the big announcement!!!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Community Supported Agriculture!

Organic, grassfed beef! Makes your mouth water, doesn't it? The above Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)-style meats came from Morris Grassfed Beef ranch in San Juan Bautista. Their cattle are born and raised in the ranges of coastal California. Their diet is fresh grass and clean water! If you've been thinking about ordering your own CSA-style meats... check out their website for more information: (I've attached their website on my "Links" list)

Thanks for the information, Neile! I know you'll be enjoying your beef! Maybe even the Rib Eye tonight? This is such an awesome tip, and I can't wait to order some of my own! :-)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Shrimp Stir Fry

This was a fun and delicious meal! My daughter and I knew we wanted a shrimp stir fry for dinner, but we couldn't agree on the vegetables. So, we took a trip to New Leaf Market and compromised our choices. We ended up having so much fun looking at their selections, a lot of which neither one of us had ever tried. This turned out to be an educational approach to "healthy eating negotiations"! Not to mention, it was an excellent stir fry! I highly recommend a tour through your local vegetable isle or farmer's market with your kids! Having them pick things out themselves is magical. Hope you enjoy our collective creation! :-)

about 14 raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 small carrot, grated (Molly insisted on grated carrots!)
1 bunch bok choy, sliced (both agreed)
1 large handful (about a cup) shiitake mushrooms (Molly wanted to try)
2 purple beauty bell peppers, julienned (we both wanted to try!)
1 to 1 1/2 T coconut oil
2 T coconut aminos (soy sauce substitute)

Heat oil in skillet, add shrimp and saute about 3-5 minutes, until shrimp is cooked through and no longer pink. Remove from pan. Add a little more coconut oil to pan if needed and saute the vegetables. I added the shiitake mushrooms last. Saute until veggies are cook through, but tender. Stir in the coconut aminos. Add the shrimp back to the pan, and toss well.
Serve and enjoy! Simple, fresh organic, paleo, kid approved and delish!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sesame Seared Wild Salmon Filets

I sort of felt like this was our "last meal" as I was making dinner tonight. The truth is, tonight was our "pre-Fran" dinner. So you can see how there's not much difference?! Yes, tomorrow's WOD is FRAN (followed by a Lululemon trunk sale) ... which is suppose to make everything all better. But as much as I try... there is still that sense of dred looming over me! However, dinner was great! Healthy fat?... check. Omega 3's?... check. Protein?... check. Vitamin D? ... check. Thrusters & pull-ups? .... we shall see! :-)

2 salmon filets
1 egg
1 T coconut aminos (or water is fine, too)
about 2 T lightly toasted sesame seeds (maybe more)
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp parsley flakes
2-3 tsp olive oil
(cast iron pan if you have one)

Combine sesame seeds, pepper and parsley flakes. In a separate bowl, mix egg with coconut aminos or water. Heat skillet with olive oil. Dip salmon filets in egg mixture and press into sesame mixture (you want the sesame mixture to entirely coat the non-skin side of the salmon). Then place in hot cast iron pan (sesame coated side) and cook for about 3 minutes. Turn over and cook for another 5-7 minutes (skin side down this time). When fish is cooked through and flaky, remove from heat. I flipped it over and pealed the skin off easily (and then flipped it over again to the pretty sesame side). A lot of flippin' .... but it was flippin' good! Hope you enjoy!!!
We enjoyed this with some steamed yellow squash, and fresh cantaloupe slices. YUM.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Paleo Quick Pick

We are utilizing these longer summer days and spending some time doing a little home maintenance! This week's project: sealing the deck... So cooking was not a priority today. Instead we settled on a Paleo Family Quick Pick! Grilled burgers, broccoli and some veggies on the side! I used extra lean ground beef and made very simple patties with a lot of ground pepper, garlic and onion powder. Sometimes our busy lives just call for ease! I know the kids were happy. According to them... this was the best meal ever! Hahaha.
Hope you're enjoying your long summer days! :-)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Basil & Spinach Rolled Chicken Breasts

Stuffed chicken breasts! Yum. Usually when I think of cooking rolled chicken breasts, I think labor intensive meal with lots of dirty dishes and a messy kitchen! Well, that was NOT the case tonight! This was pretty simple and easy (and Paleo). After all who wants to come home and cook a huge laborious meal after 30 heavy clean & jerks?!
Hope you give it a try! Enjoy...

6 chicken breasts
1/2 C basil, chopped
1/2 C spinach, chopped
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 T olive oil
2 T almond meal
1 shallot, minced (about 1/4 C)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. olive oil
sea salt
ground black pepper
parsley flakes

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In 1 tsp. olive oil, sauté shallots and garlic together. Set aside.
Pound chicken breasts fairly thin. Sprinkle with salt (always optional) and pepper. In a separate bowl, combine basil, spinach, lemon juice, olive oil and almond meal. Add shallots and garlic and mix together. Place about 1 T of the mixture in the center of each chicken breast. Roll the chicken breasts and secure with a couple toothpicks. Place in a baking dish and sprinkle the tops with some black pepper, paprika, and parsley flakes (adds some pretty color). Bake for 45 minutes. We served this with a side of sautéed spinach and steamed yellow squash. Hope you enjoy! :-)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Pan Seared Filet Mignon With Sautéed Chard

Paleo Date night! Ok... I know Monday is not a typical date night, but the kids are with their cousins for a couple days. So, I thought I would make, the usually very mundane Monday, more special... and enjoy a fine filet! Without the kids around, it's funny how we just spent our time talking about them! Of course CrossFit came up quite a bit in conversation as well... (like how much we both enjoyed the 63 burpee lateral jumps today)!
Unfortunately our barbecue is disabled at the moment, so we had our filets indoors. But never fear... the cast iron skillet is an awesome method for cooking a steak! We enjoyed our pan seared steaks on a bed of sautéed chard, with a side of fresh raspberries. Yum...
It was a great way to enjoy the first day of Summer! :-)

2 small beef filets (ours were about 6-7 ounces each)
simply seasoned with olive oil, pepper, and a little sea salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat cast iron skillet on high. Sear filet 2 1/2 minutes on each side (open some windows and turn on a fan... you may get some smoking). Place entire pan in oven and cook for an additional 6 minutes. Remove from oven and let steaks sit for 5-7 minutes. Enjoy!

While steaks are cooking... sauté some chard!
Chard recipe:
1 bunch of chard, washed and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1/2 orange bell pepper, chopped
1 T sun dried tomatoes
1 tsp. olive oil

Over medium heat, saute onion and garlic in oil. Add peppers and sun dried tomatoes. Cook for about 3-4 minutes. Add chard. Mix well, cover and simmer for about 5 minutes. Use the chard as a bed for the filet. Mmmm... a beautiful combination!

Hope you enjoy a date night soon!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Vegetable Fritters with Grilled Skirt Steak & Caramelized Onions

Wow, did I enjoy dinner tonight or what?! Mallory, suggested these Paleo veggie fritters, and they were delicious! This is a pretty common Paleo recipe floating around the web, but this was the first time I've tried them! I added fresh cilantro and some green onions (and a few extra spices because I'm spice-crazed)! THANK you SO much Mallory for turning me on to these! Very GOOD...
Hope you enjoy!

Veggie Fritters:
1 C grated sweet potatoes
3/4 C grated carrot
3/4 C grated zucchini (squeezed)
3 scallions, finely chopped
1/4 C fresh cilantro, chopped
2 eggs
1/2 C almond meal
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
12 tsp. garlic powder
about 2 T coconut oil

Mix all ingredients together. Heat coconut oil in a skillet over med-hi heat. Form patties out of veggie mixture (I was able to make 6). Brown patties in oil, about 4-5 minutes on each side.

I served these with some grilled skirt steak. Very simply grilled! Just sprinkle the skirt steak with a little ground pepper and celtic grey sea salt (optional). Grill for roughly 4-5 minutes on each side (to your desired doneness).

I topped the skirt steak (and veggie fritters) with some caramelized onions! It was a nice & tasty way to complete the meal! ...1 yellow onion, sliced, sauteed in 1 T olive oil for about 10 minutes!

Hope you enjoy this Paleo feast! We devoured it!
Thanks, again, Mallory! :-)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Spicy Ground Turkey Taco Salad

Tonight I let the kids pick dinner! Big surprise.... they wanted tacos! Fortunately a good Paleo taco salad sounded pretty darn good to me, too! It was easy and satisfying. Thanks, kids! :-)

1 to 1-1/2 lbs. ground turkey
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1 4 oz. can diced chilies
4 oz. sliced black olives
Top with:
fresh chopped cilantro
1 avocado
1 tomato

Mix cumin, oregano, chili powder and onion powder in a small bowl. Saute ground turkey and onions in a frying pan. As ground turkey is browning, add spices and mix well. Add in diced chilies and olives. Stir well and simmer for about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and let turkey mixture cool slightly.
Serve on a bed of lettuce. Top with some avocado, tomato, and salsa!
This was a fast and easy family pleaser! Hope you enjoy! :-)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Paleo Gingered Mahi Mahi filets

4 small Mahi Mahi filets
Sea salt (optional)
black pepper
1 T olive oil
1/4 tsp. arrowroot powder
3 T pineapple juice
3 T coconut aminos (soy sauce substitute)
3 T coconut vinegar
1 T grated ginger
2 cloves crushed and chopped garlic
2 tsp. sesame oil

In a bowl, combine marinade ingredients. Sprinkle fish with salt and pepper and add to marinade. Let sit for 20 to 30 minutes. (During this time, I prepared the cauliflower rice). Heat olive oil in skillet on medium-high heat. Reserve marinade and brown fish for about 5 minutes on each side in hot skillet. Remove from pan and keep warn. In a sauce pan, heat reserved marinade. Whisk in 1/4 tsp. arrowroot powder. Cook until sauce thickens. Pour ginger sauce over Mahi Mahi and serve! (I poured a little of the sauce over the cauliflower rice, too)

Cauliflower rice:
1 head cauliflower
1 small carrots, grated
1 clove garlic, minced
3 scallions, chopped
about 1/4 tsp. coconut vinegar
1 tsp. olive oil

Shred 1 head of cauliflower. Saute green onions, minced garlic and grated carrot in 1 tsp. olive oil. Saute for about 3-4 minutes. Add a splash of coconut vinegar. Add to cauliflower rice and mix well. Heat cauliflower in the microwave or stove top, just until it's heated through. That's it! Hope you enjoy! :-)

Very yummy! My husband made a comment to me tonight that I have to share...
He said, since he's been eating Paleo, he's been eating like a KING!

.... I love it!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dutch Oven Chicken Thighs

Tonight, I'm sharing a family recipe! This is my father-in-law's family famous dutch oven chicken! He is a fabulous cook, and this is one of his most requested meals (and one of my husband's favorites). I hope to tackle his chicken cacciatore next! I had to paleoize his recipe a bit (and felt a tad guilty eliminating all that butter) but we all STILL enjoyed it very much! Ideally a cast iron dutch oven is the best, but if you don't have one a 4-6 quart pot with a lid would be fine. :-)
Hope you enjoy!

8-10 pieces chicken thighs
2 T olive oil
2 T coconut oil
5 cloves garlic, sliced
1 onion, chopped
3/4 C white wine

Sprinkle chicken thighs with some ground pepper and sea salt (optional). Heat barbecue to medium heat and brown chicken thighs on all sides. While chicken is browning, heat oil in dutch oven and saute garlic and onions in oils. Add chicken to dutch oven and cover with wine.
Cover and simmer for about 1 to 1-1/2 hours! Tender, juicy, and full of flavor! ...Meat falls off the bone! Yum!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Baked Turkey Paleo Meatballs

Ahhhh. Finally! I have been craving meatballs! These have been on the agenda for a couple days, but the timing was finally right tonight! I liked these a lot because they're not fried. There was no greasy splatter on the stove! They were filling, satisfying, and super tasty! Scott sauteed some summer squash to go with them (we like to call it flying saucer squash). Hope you enjoy!

~ 1 lb. ground turkey
1 egg
1-1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1-1/2 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/4 C almond meal
pinch celtic grey sea salt
meatball topping:
1/4 C almond meal
2 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine all ingredients, and use your hands to mix (it's just the best way!). Form into about 2-1/2 inch diameter balls. Roll the meatballs in the almond meal topping and place them on a cookie sheet. I was able to make about 14-15 meatballs . Bake for about 20-25 minutes, until browned and cooked all the way through. They would be good served with just about ANY vegetable! I am just so glad there are leftovers! Yum....

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Chimichurri Wild Salmon Filets

This was a nice little find at Trader Joe's for a quick dinner! You can find it in the frozen section, pre-marinated, and it's Paleo! Cooking options are on the package... tonight I chose to pan fry. I was in a really quick meal mood! Once again, Trader Joe's pulls through! :-)
I made a salad, and sliced up some fresh strawberries! It was a dinner "for time" and performed well! Hope you enjoy!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Lemon Garlic Chicken

End of school activities are taking up a lot of my time and so I am needing meals that don't! This is one of those quick and tasty Paleo entrees that come in handy from time-to-time! If you have a meat, some spices, some fat, and a vegetable in your refrigerator or pantry... then I guarantee you have a quick Paleo Meal, too! (I can't guarantee how it will taste, but I'm pretty sure it won't be bad! This turned out really good! (and I think it even has the potential to be great). Enjoy!!!

4 skinless boneless chicken breasts, pounded slightly (you can cut these in half, too, for smaller portions and leftovers)... always planning for that lunch the next day!
3/4 C low sodium chicken broth
juice of 1 fresh lemon (or 2 T lemon juice)
1 tsp. lemon zest
2 cloves garlic, minced
black pepper
garlic powder
1 T Olive oil
1/4 C fresh basil leaves, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle black pepper and garlic powder over chicken breasts. Heat 1 T olive oil in a skillet and brown chicken on both sides for about 4-5 minutes. Remove from pan to baking dish, and set aside. Saute garlic in skillet and add remaining ingredients (broth, lemon zest and juice). Bring to a boil and deglaze pan of chicken bits. Pour sauce over chicken. Sprinkle chopped basil leaves over chicken, cover (with foil) and bake for about 10 minutes.

We served this with some sauteed rainbow chard (mild and sweet tasting... OH, and pretty!)
This dish had some leftover sauce, so a side dish of cauliflower rice would also be great to sop up the extra lemony and garlicky juice! Hope you enjoy! It's a quick meal with minimal ingredients! A good one to make with your Paleo staples (or when your cupboards are bare, like mine). :-))

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Berry & Spinach Salad

Berries berries everywhere! This is SUCH a wonderful time of year! The sun is out (finally) and the fruit is plentiful! Especially the berries! So here is a fun, fresh idea for spinach! I had this salad twice over the weekend. It was delicious! Even the kids liked it! Hope you enjoy!

Fresh spinach (about 1 bunch or a 9 oz package)
8-10 fresh strawberries, sliced
1 package blackberries
1/4 C slivered almonds

1/4 C apple cider vinegar
1/4 C grapeseed oil (or walnut oil, or olive oil)
2 T sesame seeds
1 T poppy seeds
1 T honey (optional) or 1 T fruit juice (pineapple or apple work well)

Mix spinach and berries together. Drizzle salad dressing over salad and toss well. Sprinkle slivered almonds over the top. Enjoy! (Store leftover dressing in the refrigerator).

*Paleo challengers, I know this has been a particularly hard week in the gym! OUCH... I feel your pain! But, please get your benchmark wods done. You can do Jackie instead of the daily wod at any time! :-)) Scott did his deadlift benchmark lift today and got a PR! It was happy times around our house this evening.... I know there are more PR's to be had!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sesame Seared Ahi Tuna Steaks

I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Weekend. Mine was full of barbecues and family time! The weather was amazing, so I finally was able to get my hands dirty in the garden! Like a good little CrossFitter, I spent my Monday morning suffering though a hero WOD in honor of our fallen soldiers and those who have dedicated their lives to serve, defend and protect our great nation! And just like a good hero WOD... I'm still suffering. :-)
Murph meets Trevor is a rather ingenious blend of torture! Thanks, Michele! ;-)
Now it is time to recover and eat good paleo food! And this was just the recipe...
Hope you enjoy!

2 - 6 oz. tuna steaks
1/4 C Coconut Secret, coconut aminos (love this stuff! ...But I've only been able to find it at the Whole Foods Market on Soquel Avenue).
1 T white wine
1 T organic honey
2 T sesame oil
1 T vinegar (I used coconut vinegar... by Coconut Secret as well)
1 T olive oil
1/4 C sesame seeds
wasabi paste (to desired taste)

Combine coconut aminos, wine, honey, and sesame oil in a small bowl. Divide into two equal parts (eye-ball it). Stir in the vinegar and wasabi paste into on of them and set aside. That will be your dipping sauce. Coat the tuna steaks with the other aminos mixture. Sprinkle sesame seeds liberally over tuna. Heat olive oil in a skillet over high (I used my cast iron pan). When oil is hot, sear tuna steaks for about 1-2 minutes on each side. If your tuna is fresh, and of high quality, then you could sear the steaks for only 30 seconds on each side, and serve rare. Place steaks in a warm oven until ready to serve. I served this over a bed of cauliflower rice, and drizzled a little dipping sauce over the top! This was a real treat!

Mallory doesn't even know it, but she gave me this great idea last week when we were talking recipes in the gym! I love talking recipes, and I'm always looking for new menu ideas! So, thanks, Mallory! :-))

*Paleo Challenge is ending.... THIS WEEK.... So, please please please get your final benchmark wods finished! (Jackie, 400m run or 500m row, and deadlifts!) Email me if you have questions or need to schedule your final photo! Congratulations on completing 3 months! I'm looking forward to all the results!

CrossFit Santa Cruz Central