Monday, August 27, 2012

Ahi Tuna with Warm Kale salad

(serves 1 for dinner and 2 as an appetizer)

3/4 -1 lb sushi-grade ahi tuna chopped in small chunks
1/2 tsp. fresh grated ginger
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 green onions sliced
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tsp. fish sauce (optional)
1-2 tsp. seasoned rice vinegar
Sriracha for taste
Sesame seeds

Mix together and add chopped ahi to sauce. Sprinkle with sesame seeds
1/2-1 bag pre-mixed kale salad with cabbage and carrots
 Heat pan with 1 tsp. sesame seed oil and 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil. Add kale and cover. Continue to steam until slightly tender 3-5 minutes. Add 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce and 1 tsp. fish sauce. Mix and cover for 1 more minute. Plate warm kale and top with ahi mixture.
Sprinkle with sesame seeds

Top 10 Primal Pantry Essentials and Superfoods

Celtic Salt- Replaces table salt and sea salt. Celtic sea salt has tremendous healing virtues that have the exact opposite effects of refined salt.  It helps to balance out and nourish our body with minerals that our body lacks.  It is particularly helpful in helping with mucus elimination.
Almond Flour-replaces baking flour, toasting almond flour can substitute bread crumbs, and use instead of flour for dredging chicken
Coconut flour- used in lots of paleo baking recipes
Arrowroot powder-replaces cornstarch, and is used in cakes and breads to help lighten and fluff up dense almond flour
Chia seeds- Used as substitutions for fat in baking, tasty soaked in fruit juice,and fun to eat raw.  (I put in my veggie protein drink daily) Also a superfood (see below)
Adobo Seasoning-tasty seasoning for turkey and chicken,delicious on sweet potatoes, awesome as a fajita seasoning for onions and peppers.
Almond Milk- Substitute for milk, and can replace juice in smoothies
Honey-replaces sugar in coffee, can be a sugar substitute in baking, buying local raw honey can help with allergies (don’t give to babies)
Coconut Oil-Great for browning meat and stir frys, and can be used in baking. Coconut oil is rich in vitamins and minerals and especially rich (60%+) in important fatty acids, the medium chain triglycerides (MCTs)Coconut Oil has been mistakenly labeled as unhealthy due to its high saturated fat content.  However, modern science has now refuted these earlier claims and instead, is praising the health benefits with some even stating it as the “healthiest oil on earth.”
Full Fat Coconut Milk- replaces dairy milk and cream in cooking and baking. Awesome for thickening soups.
Super Foods- great additions to add into shakes and smoothies

Maca Powder-Maca has long been used to increase stamina, boost libido, and combat fatigue for good reasons. The root is a superb adaptogen, as it enables the body to more easily adapt to and regulate stress factors imposed upon it. Studies have also identified four alkaloids present in maca, which are known to nourish the endocrine system (the system in the body which is responsible for the production and maintenance of hormones). Maca root is a highly nutrient-dense whole food, as it is packed with vitamins, plant sterols, many essential minerals, amino acids and healthy fats. This is a particularly powerful and balanced food for athletes and those who are looking to combat stress or increase stamina.Maca is a very potent food, and just a little maca sprinkled into recipes turns any meal into a supermeal. With an earthy taste that is mildly nutty with a hint of butterscotch, maca is easily blended into superfood smoothies, various milks, chocolates, or mixed into flour for dessert recipes. Alternately, use maca straight by taking in a capsule form, and enjoy its benefits anytime and anywhere.

Spirulina-Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae that is rich in protein, vitamins, minerals, and carotenoids, antioxidants that can help protect cells from damage. It contains nutrients, including B complex vitamins, beta-carotene, vitamin E, manganese, zinc, copper, iron, selenium, and gamma linolenic acid (an essential fatty acid).

Chia Seeds-
  • 2 times the protein of any other seed or grain,Chias seeds are said to have:
  • 5 times the calcium of milk, plus boron which is a trace mineral that
    helps transfer calcium into your bones,
  • 2 times the amount of potassium as bananas,
  • 3 times the reported antioxidant strength of blueberries
  • 3 times more iron than spinach
  • copious amounts of omega 3 and omega 6, which are essential fatty acids
They are a complete source of protein, providing all the essential amino acids in an easily digestible form. They are also a fabulous source of soluble fibre.
Like flax, chia is highly ‘hydrophilic’ - the seeds absorb water and create a mucilaginous gel. They can hold 9-12 times their weight in water and they absorb it very rapidly - in under 10 minutes.

Antioxidants One advantage of chia is that because it has such a high antioxidant content, the seeds stay stable for much longer, whereas flax, for example, may turn rancid. Chia seeds can easily be stored dry for 4-5 years without deterioration in flavour, odour or nutritional value. You can substitute chia in any recipe that calls for flax.

  • Provides energy
  • Boosts strength
  • Bolsters endurance
  • Levels blood sugar
  • Induces weight loss
  • Aids intestinal regularity

Turkey and Chicken Loaf

1 pound ground chicken
1/2 pound ground turkey
8 oz. can tomato sauce (save 1/4 for topping)
1/4 cup finely chopped onion (sauteed 2-3 minutes)
1 1/2 finely shredded carrots
1/4 cup almond flour (substitute almond flour for 1/2 cup oatmeal and do not add carrots if you are not paleo-driven)
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg beaten
1-2 tablespoons dijon mustard for topping only

Pre-heat oven to 350

Mix all ingredients together. Place in greased loaf pan. Mix remaining tomato sauce with mustard. Smooth over top of loaf. Bake at 350 for 1 hour. Insert knife to make sure meatloaf is cooked through. Also, when removed from over there is lots of liquid. Allow liquid to absorb back into loaf. It takes about 10 minutes.
I use almond flour as a bread crumb/oatmeal as Gluten-free substitute. 

Salmon Marinade

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup horseradish
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4-6 green onions chopped
1 teaspoon mustard
4 tablespoons mustard
4 tablespoons fresh parsley
salt and pepper to taste

Saute onions in olive oil and butter until tender.
Add remaining ingredients.
Heat over medium heat in sauce pan for approx. 5-7 minutes.
Cover fresh salmon with sauce. Options for cooking:
Cover in tin foil and bake
Saute in mixture on stovetop
Make tin foil packet and throw on grill

Shepherd's Pie (courtesy of Primal Blueprint Cookbook)

1 head cauliflower
4 tablespoons butter
1-3 tablespoons cream (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion chopped
1 cup frozen peas and carrots thawed
3/4 cup frozen green beans thawed
1 pound ground beef or bison (or use leftover beef and cut into small pieces)
1 tablespoon coconut flour or almond flour
3/4 cup beef stock or broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1 tsp. dried

Preheat oven to 400

Break the cauliflower into chunky pieces and steam until just tender. Put in the food processor with 2 tablespoons butter and process until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add cream (optional). Set aside.
Heat oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add onion and saute several minutes until soft. Add beef and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring to break up the meat so it browns evenly. Add peas, carrots and green beans and cook another five minutes. Stir in coconut flour. Add broth and herbs and reduce the heat to low and simmer., stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from skillet and put into a 9 inch pie pan. Spread the cauliflower over the top.
Scatter 2 tablespoons of butter cut into small pieces on top of the cauliflower. bake 30-35 minutes.

Moroccan Chicken: courtesy of Primal Blueprint cookbook


2 tablespoons oil
1 onion finely diced
3 garlic cloves finely chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger
1/2 tsp.tumeric
1/2 tsp. cinnimon
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. coriander
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne
Salt to taste
4 chicken thighs
1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes in juice
2 cups water
1/2 cupr finely chopped cilantro
1 lemon. thinly sliced
2 cups green beans cut in half
1/4 cup finely chopped mint
juice from 1 lemon

Saute onion, garlic and ginger in oil until soft and slightly browned. Add spices and saute a minute more. Then add chicken, tomatoes, water, cilantro and sliced lemon. Simmer with a lid for 30 minutes. Add green beans, mint and lemon juice. Simmer a few more minutes until green beans are done. Serve over cauliflower rice (recipe to follow)
I personally double the recipe to ensure we have leftovers. This dish happens to get better after a day or so.

Cauliflower Rice:
Cut 1 cauliflower into small florets. If you are adding cauliflower rice to a dish that will simmer on the stove, there is no need to pre-cook. If you're serving the cauliflower rice alone as a side dish, steam it briefly before grating. Run the florets through the food processor using the grating blade, or use a cheese grater.

Adobo Chicken

1 cut up chicken browned *I prefer all wings, thighs and/or legs
½ cup soy sauce
½ cup cider vinegar *I use ¼ c cider vinegar and ¼ c seasoned rice vinegar
1 cup water
4 cloves of garlic peeled
1 teaspoon peppercorns…I just give it a few grinds of fresh pepper
No salt, soy sauce is salty enough
A slice or two of fresh ginger (dry ginger in a pinch, but it isn’t as good)

Place browned chicken in pot with sauce and cook it covered until the chicken is done. Pick out the ginger slices.  Remove the chicken and reduce sauce or thicken with arrowroot powder (or cornstarch for the non- paleo folk) or leave it alone. Serve with cauliflower rice to soak up the sauce. I’ve also made this dish with chicken that hasn’t been browned, but it is better if you take the time to brown it first.

Mediterranean Turkey Burgers

Serves 4
1 pound ground lean turkey meat
1/4 cup chopped pitted kalamata olives (bite-size chunks)
2 tsp. - 1 T dried oregano
1/4 cup chopped cheese (I prefer tangy white cheddar, but feta is great too)
salt and pepper to taste (cheese and olives are salty, so go light on the salt)

-Mix all ingredients in bowl, and form into 4 patties
-Heat grill pan to medium high heat and lightly coat in garlic olive oil
-Grill each side for about 4-5 minutes, or until cooked through.
-Garnish with lemon mayo (recipe follows), and sliced roasted red peppers
-Place on top of a bed of greens with lightly salted tomatoes

Lemon Mayo:
1 T mayo
1/4 lemon (about 2 tsp. of juice)
1/8 tsp. garlic powder

Balsamic and Shallot Salmon

Serves 4
Salmon steaks for 4 (season with salt and pepper, dried thyme, and garlic olive oil)
1/3 c. balsamic
1/2 c. red wine
2 Shallots chopped finely
1/2 cup butter ( 1/4 cup works tastes just as good)

-Place balsamic, shallots and red wine in pan and heat on medium-low.
-Simmer until liquid is reduced by half. -Grill salmon on both sides (if skinless) for 4 minutes per side, or 6-8 minutes in total.
When sauce is reduced, add butter and melt. As soon is butter is melted, plate fish, and drizzle sauce over top (the sauce is so good it's downright drinkable, so don't skimp on it!).

Coconut Curried Chicken (courtesy of The Primal Blueprint Cookbook)

4-8 Bone-in and skinned chicken thighs (I use the same recipe but for 8 pieces)
2 Tb. coconut oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 medium finely chopped onion
3 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 inch piece of ginger root, grated
1 green chilli, seeds removed
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 Tb. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground tumeric
Cayenne pepper to taste
salt to taste
1 Tb. white wine vinegar
1 1/4 cup-2 cup coconut milk
1 head cauliflower, cut into 2 inch florets
Garnish with cilantro and or shredded coconut

Heat oil in a large skillet, add chicken and cook over medium-high heat 8-10 minutes, turning once or twice to brown exterior.
Remove meat from the pan to a large plate. Add mustard seeds and cook until they begin to pop (about 1 minute)
Add onion to pan and cook, scraping up the browned bits left behind, until soft and golden.
Stir in garlic, ginger root, green chili, and ground spices: cook about 2 minutes. Stir in vinegar, then return chicken to pan, turning and coating them  with spicy mixture. Pour coconut milk over all and bring to a slow boil. Cover, and reduce heat to low and simmer about 40 minutes, or until chick is tender. Add cauliflower florets in the last 10 minutes of cooking and simmer until tender.
Garnish with fresh cilantro and shredded coconut (optional)

Artichoke Stuffed Chicken Breast

Serves 4

4 chicken breasts pounded flat (thin enough to roll)
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
1-2 roasted red peppers cut in small chunks
1 can drained artichokes sliced into small chunks
1 tablespoon freshly chopped basil
1/2 cup toasted seasoned almond flour (recipe to follow)
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven 350

-In a small mixing bowl, add all ingredients except for chicken
-Take a large scoop of mixture and place in the middle of flattened chicken breast.
-Pull sides of chicken together to and attach with tooth picks or metal prongs
-Brown chicken in hot skillet on both sides (3 minutes on both sides), or until brown.
-Add to greased baking dish and bake for 20 minutes, give or take a few.
-Rest for 5-10 minutes and then serve.

Toasted, seasoned almond flour:
Heat olive oil in small skillet. Add almond flour, salt and pepper to taste, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, and keep stirring until almond flour is golden brown. This is a replacement for bread crumbs.

TLW - Turkey Lettuce Wraps

The easiest way to replace sandwiches at lunchtime.

I use Columbus Peppered Turkey, but any sandwich meat, canned tuna or chicken, or leftover cooked meat works just as well.

2-4 large lettuce leaves (wash and dry)
several slices of roasted red pepper
cheese slices (optional)
dijon mustard (optional)
sliced tomatoes
turkey slices
Roll up roasted peppers, tomatoes, and cheese inside turkey slices. Wrap lettuce around turkey rolls and eat!
Kid-friendly, great to eat on hikes, and versatile enough for any palette.

Chocolate Power Balls ( courtesy of Gluten free Vegan Comfort Food)

This recipe is very similar to my goji bars, and ingredients can be substituted with seeds, and dried fruits.

 Makes about 16 balls
1 cup walnuts
1 cup cashews
1 cup pitted and chopped dates
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon pure vanilla
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 dash nutmeg
1 tablespoon orange juice

1. Place the nuts and dates in a food processor and pulse until ground. Add the rest of the ingredients and whirl until the mixture begins to form a ball.
2. Remove the mixture from the food processor and put into a large bowl. Form into tablespoon-size balls and place on a cookie sheet. Chill in fridge for about an hour until hardened. (They last in the fridge for about a week.)

Portobello Mushrooms Steak with Smothered Onions (courtesy of "Gluten-Free Vegan Comfort Food" by Susan O'Brien)

Serves 4

This recipe was so delicious, I had to share it with everyone.

4 portobello mushrooms, cleaned and stems removed
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine
3 cloves garlic minced
2 teaspoons tamarind sauce ( I used 1/2 teaspoon white vinegar and a splash of fresh orange juice)
1 teaspoon molasses
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Celtic salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Mix ingredients in a casserole dish. Coat mushrooms with marinade, and spoon marinade on top of gills. Let stand for 15 minutes on counter, flipping the mushrooms half way through. Heat grill pan, or grill, and grill for 3-5 minutes on each side. (Keep extra marinade for later)
Slice up one onion. Saute onions in olive oil ( 1/2 tablespoon) and cook until tender. Add a sprinkle of salt. Remove onions and set aside for later. In hot sauce pan add remaining marinade and keep over heat until hot. Remove mushrooms from grill pan , top with sauteed onions, and drizzle remaining warmed up marinade on top.

I have a meat lover at home, so I cooked up some chicken sausage from Trader Joe's (removed from casing) and added to sauteed onions. I then topped mushrooms with the sausage-onion mixture. It was delicious with the extra meat, but tasty just by itself for the non- meat lovers.

Chicken Parmigiana (Yes, you can make Italian dishes without the bread crumbs!)

Serves 4
4 -6 Thinly flattened chicken breasts
2 eggs
1 cup almond flour (seasoning suggestions below)
4-6 slices fresh mozzarella
4-6 large fresh basil leaves
4-6 slices of heirloom tomatoes or fresh in-season tomatoes
salt and pepper
1/2 cup ground Parmesan cheese
14 oz of fresh tomato sauce (recipe below)

Preheat oven 350 degrees

-season almond flour with salt, pepper, dried oregano, dried basil, dried parsley, garlic powder and place on large flat plate
-crack two eggs and whip until blended in large flat bowl
-Salt and pepper chicken on both sides
 -Place chicken breast in egg on both sides and then dredge in seasoned almond flour
-When all 4-6 pieces are finished, place in hot skillet with olive oil and a tab of butter. Brown chicken, about 3-5 minutes on each side, or until golden brown
-Grease a large glass dish and place chicken breasts in a line. Top with fresh basil leaves, fresh tomato slices and then mozzarella cheese slices. Coat all chicken with homemade tomato sauce. Sprinkle parmesan cheese over the top.
-Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. Check half-way through so chicken does not dry out.

Tomato Sauce Recipe ( I guesstimate with my seasoning, but these are my approximate measurements)
14-20 oz canned unseasoned tomato sauce. Add 1 tablespoon unsalted chicken bouillon, salt and pepper to taste, 1 tablespoon dried oregano, 1 tablespoon dried basil, sprinkle red pepper flakes, 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder.