Weekend Prep…

Health-quotes1As I mentioned before, every Sunday I try to prepare for the week by planning my meals, grocery shopping and prepping some of the meals. Since I’ve decided to follow the Paleo Diet I’ve committed to preparing most of my meals and snacks. There are always those exceptions, but typically I follow the same routine of eating what I cook and try to avoid going out to eat. Overall, I’m feeling much better… my energy is up and my aches and pains are much less.

That said, I want to share with you one of the recipes I prepared over the weekend. This meal is a new favorite –  Slow-cooked Beef Brisket – AMAZING! I made this along with oven baked sweet potatoes (red potatoes for my husband) and Brussels sprouts sauteed with onion and garlic.

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Sunday Funday!!

PrintI try to use my Sundays for cooking meals for the week. I was able to knock out a couple of great Paleo meals that I’m going to share with you.

First I made Roasted Tomato Soup (Paleogrubs.com), which turned out fantastic! There wasn’t too much prep time as it only involves cutting up veggies, throwing them on a cookie sheet and placing them into the oven. In fact, this soup is very easy to make and super healthy! You can always add shredded chicken or crumbled sausage to it as well for a heartier soup.

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While the soup was simmering on the stove I started on making a paleo meatloaf…This took a little more prep time, about fifteen minutes. I found this recipe at www.paleoplan.com. I reheated the meatloaf for dinner last night and cooked up some asparagus as a side dish. The meatloaf came out pretty darn good. It’s got a lot of flavor with a little kick to it. I actually made it with one pound of venison and a quarter pound of sausage…

CaptureNext up, a couple of days worth of lunches by simply sauteing up some chicken sausage, brussels sprouts, garlic and onion. First I blanched the Brussels sprouts for about four minutes and while I was doing that I was cooking the onion and sausage in a pan with some olive oil. I then added the Brussels sprouts and lastly the garlic… delicious and easy meal to get me through a couple of lunches this week.

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I typically make these  really great Sweet Potato and Apple Breakfast Patties – a recipe I found on www.paleomg.com. I can usually get five or six patties out of this so it lasts me all week! And I love them – I haven’t gotten sick of them yet!! I usually make mine with bison or venison mixed with sausage. They are great because they have apples and sweet potato mixed in, both very healthy. I think sweet potato is considered a super food as it has many health benefits.


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So that’s it! Just a peak into one of my Sundays as to how I prep for healthy eating during the week. It’s a lot of work but it’s worth it!

 

Quick Dinner…

FullSizeRenderI have been hit with the WORST allergies! Apparently if you move to Austin, TX  you will be hit with the cedar fever at some point in time, and I guess this is my time. That said, I wasn’t feeling so great when I got home last night but didn’t want to cave in to that and eat takeout or something like that. So I tossed up a meal that was really fast and easy…and it tasted delicious.

I dug through the fridge and found Brussels Sprouts, an Onion, Garlic, Bell Pepper, a Sweet Potato and some Sausage…

I chopped up the sweet potato and seasoned it with olive oil, garlic, a little salt and pepper and threw that into the oven to bake. While that was baking I chopped up the onion, more garlic, bell pepper and sausage. I then sauteed the sausage in olive oil to get it nice and brown.. I added the veggies to the pan, sauteed them up as well. The sweet potatoes were done around the same time and I just sort of mixed it all together. Came out GREAT and I had enough for my lunch today!!

I’m still learning to cook and I think I did a pretty good job of throwing something together!

Crockpot Paleo Thai Stew Recipe

CaptureI tried out this amazing recipe over the weekend from the Against All Grain cookbook. It came out really nice – wonderful flavor. IMG_8291It took me about 45 minutes to prep before it went into the crock pot. Sooo worth it! It makes 6-8 servings – I’m going to freeze some of it. I’m trying to stock my freezer with the healthy meals I cook – it’s so time consuming to be constantly cooking! I’m hoping in a few months I will have a nice stockpile in my freezer so that I’m not having to cook SO MUCH every week/day!! You can find the recipe on the Against all Grain website as well.

Crispy Brussels Sprouts w/Bacon & Garlic

brussel sprouts 2aI found this yummy recipe on Pinterest and tossed it together last night. It came out so great!! I’m not a big veggie fan but I’ve been trying to add more veggies to my diet. Who knew that I’d love brussells sprouts! Plus… there is bacon. The recipe is really simple and can be found HERE.

A little about the health benefits of Brussels Sprouts… They are among the top 20 most nutritious foods with vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium and manganese. One cup of Brussels sprouts provides only 38 calories, 0 grams of fat, 8 grams of carbohydrate and 3 grams of protein.

Broth is Beautiful

food-whybroth1“Good broth will resurrect the dead,” says a South American proverb. Said Escoffier: “Indeed, stock is everything in cooking. Without it, nothing can be done.”

A cure-all in traditional households and the magic ingredient in classic gourmet cuisine, stock or broth made from bones of chicken, fish and beef builds strong bones, assuages sore throats, nurtures the sick, puts vigor in the step and sparkle in love life–so say grandmothers, midwives and healers. For chefs, stock is the magic elixir for making soul-warming soups and matchless sauces.

Meat and fish stocks play a role in all traditional cuisines—French, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, African, South American, Middle Eastern and Russian. In America, stock went into gravy and soups and stews. That was when most animals were slaughtered locally and nothing went to waste. Bones, hooves, knuckles, carcasses and tough meat went into the stock pot and filled the house with the aroma of love. Today we buy individual filets and boneless chicken breasts, or grab fast food on the run, and stock has disappeared from the American tradition.

Grandmother Knew BestScience validates what our grandmothers knew. Rich homemade chicken broths help cure colds. Stock contains minerals in a form the body can absorb easily—not just calcium but also magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur and trace minerals. It contains the broken down material from cartilage and tendons–stuff like chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine, now sold as expensive supplements for arthritis and joint pain.

Fish stock, according to traditional lore, helps boys grow up into strong men, makes childbirth easy and cures fatigue. “Fish broth will cure anything,” is another South American proverb. Broth and soup made with fishheads and carcasses provide iodine and thyroid-strengthening substances.

When broth is cooled, it congeals due to the presence of gelatin. The use of gelatin as a therapeutic agent goes back to the ancient Chinese. Gelatin was probably the first functional food, dating from the invention of the “digestor” by the Frenchman Papin in 1682. Papin’s digestor consisted of an apparatus for cooking bones or meat with steam to extract the gelatin. Just as vitamins occupy the center of the stage in nutritional investigations today, so two hundred years ago gelatin held a position in the forefront of food research. Gelatin was universally acclaimed as a most nutritious foodstuff particularly by the French, who were seeking ways to feed their armies and vast numbers of homeless in Paris and other cities. Although gelatin is not a complete protein, containing only the amino acids arginine and glycine in large amounts, it acts as a protein sparer, helping the poor stretch a few morsels of meat into a complete meal. During the siege of Paris, when vegetables and meat were scarce, a doctor named Guerard put his patients on gelatin bouillon with some added fat and they survived in good health.

The French were the leaders in gelatin research, which continued up to the 1950s. Gelatin was found to be useful in the treatment of a long list of diseases including peptic ulcers, tuberculosis, diabetes, muscle diseases, infectious diseases, jaundice and cancer. Babies had fewer digestive problems when gelatin was added to their milk. The American researcher Francis Pottenger pointed out that as gelatin is a hydrophilic colloid, which means that it attracts and holds liquids, it facilitates digestion by attracting digestive juices to food in the gut. Even the epicures recognized that broth-based soup did more than please the taste buds.

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“Soup is a healthy, light, nourishing food” said Brillant-Savarin, “good for all of humanity; it pleases the stomach, stimulates the appetite and prepares the digestion.”