Buffalo chicken salad 

  
Lettuce

Leftover grilled chicken 

Tomato

Franks buffalo sauce

Blue cheese dressing 

A nice way to spice up chicken and lettuce. I really wanted a lettuce wrap but I only had shredded lettuce. This salad needed some crunch bacon would have been great or even sunflower seeds or cashews. Anyway quick lunch 

Lazy Sunday Lunch/and last nights supper

  

Jax gave me a cold this week. He’s already bounced back but I’m still a little run down. So we’ve been eating what’s easy. Today Rob had the day off so he grilled all the chicken in our fridge, and a steak for himself. We’ll eat some of the chicken today and have some easy protein for later in the week. When I have to buy groceries in a hurry I buy easy meats we can use in a variety of ways. While he was grilling I diced some bell pepper, cuccumber, green onion, red onion, tomato, and the last of the strawberries I found in the fridge. We threw together quick salads and it was a great. 

Last night we had brisket. I found it on sale at our butcher shop. Cooked it in the crockpot with some seasoning and about a cup of coffee 

 I cooked some new new potatoes and beans on the side. Canned beans are another “not paleo” food we eat on occasion. It was really nice to have an easy supper at the end of a busy week. We tend to be pretty repetitive salads in the summer soups in the winter. How do you stay out of a food rut? 

Grab and Go Lunch

  
Well it’s summer, and we are BUSY! Rob and I have realized the quickest way for us to derail from the paleo path is when we fail to plan. I went out of town last weekend, missed our normal grocery shopping day, and so this week has been creative cooking week. I made it to the store tonight and then spent about 10 minutes chopping in the kitchen. It really doesn’t take long to prep and it makes a world of difference on a busy morning. 

I made 4 of these Italian salads using up the last of our veg from last week including:

-leftover shredded lettuce from last nights tacos

-one yellow bell pepper

-one cuccumber

-half a carton of cherry tomatoes

-half a bundle of green onions

-half a red onion

-a few banana pepper rings

-hard salami 

Chop!Chop! 

Done. 

  
Now we are both set to finish out the week, in the morning we can dress these, grab some fruit and some nuts and a bottle of water and lunch is packed! 

Paleo-on-the-go! 

-In other Sandwell life news we recently updated our Kitchen and baby J started eating food! So I’m learning all about how to make baby food. So probably posts on that coming up, stay tuned! 

Berries and Cream Breakfast 

I went to visit some family over the weekend and made a stop at Trader Joe’s. While I was there I stocked up on a few of my favorite items. My sweet friend Blair had just told me about how she uses coconut cream and then I saw this:

  
So I bought a few cans, let one chill in the fridge overnight. 

In the morning open it, scoop out cream off the top into a small mixing bowl. (I used the thickest part of the cream but I’ll save the rest of the can for coffee creamer.) Next I add in a tiny drizzle of local honey. 

  
I love local honey! I’m considering getting bees of my own 🐝

Then I use a hand mixer on med speed for 3-4 minutes until it has the consistency of cool whip. 

Then just add some berries and enjoy!  

 
There was pleanty left over so I’ll be enjoying this a few times this week! Perfect summer paleo treat! 

  
Here is the essential “part of a complete breakfast” photo. But it’s pretty filling on its own. Enjoy!

Attempted Paleo Potato Pancakes

Attempted Potato Pancakes

Last night we had Shepard’s pie for dinner and we are both working late several nights this week, so I made a giant batch of mashed potatoes.

I do this pretty often if I’m taking the time to make a multistep dish I usually just make a big ole batch. It’s not much more work to make a double batch and it makes for easy dinners later in the week.

This morning I thought it would be fun to make potato pancakes.

Wrong.

I’m not sure why since I’ve never ever ever not ever been successful at making pancakes that I could whip up a potato version.

It wasn’t pretty.
But it was tasty.

Here’s what I did I took about two cups of mashed potatoes and added an egg. 20130910-150135.jpgWhip em together and heat a little oil on the stove at a med high heat. Then plop the taters in.

If you dip the back of your spoon in the hot oil you can press down the potatoes into a pancake shape with out it sticking to them.20130910-150329.jpgAfter they get nice and browned on the edges flip them over.

This is where it all went wrong. I’m a terrible flipper. It all fell apart. 20130910-150504.jpgBut then I had a moment of inspiration brought to me by my former pre-paleo life and steak and shake.

Silver dollar potato pancakes.
So I changed my method and made them smaller. This worked better but not wonderful.

In the end they were not beautiful but they were amazing tastey!!!

*most recipes for potato pancakes include some flour, I think that would have helped but really for the most part I just have no flipping skills. I will let Rob do the flipping next time.

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Use what you have.

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We’re in the process of a major move at my job. Which means I’ve been working a little extra on weekends. This weekend was going to be crazy busy for Rob and I, and he is helping out big time with the cooking. Last night he made some amazing chili, which made some awesome leftovers for breakfast. I had a small portion with a fried egg on top. Total time investment about 7 minutes. Now I’m fueled for the long day ahead of me. Use your leftovers.

Salad for Breakfast

I had to go into work super early today and didn’t have time to make anything for breakfast. But I knew I had a long day ahead of me and I didn’t want to try to do it on an empty stomach. Which ended up being a good idea, because it turned out to be a busy day. So I went down to the food court to see if anybody was open. And the only place that was was a chicken sandwich place. But they sell salads, so I figured I’d try my luck.

I tried their Cobb Salad, which I ordered with grilled chicken instead of the breaded chicken it normally comes with; and without cheese or dressing. The grilled chicken was served cold, which may have been because it was nine am and they were just opening, or may have been because that’s how they serve it. I didn’t really care enough to ask. I didn’t realize until I opened it up that it also had corn on it, which I normally don’t eat and mostly picked out with my fork, although I wasn’t overly concerned and I definitely ate some of it. Other than that it was served with some crispy pepper strips which I skipped because they listed some grain products in the ingredients, and tomatoes and carrots and eggs and bacon which I did eat.

I had the whole thing dry. And before I took a bite I really wanted to cover it with dressing. But then I tried it and it was awesome and I devoured it as quickly as I could. I still experience some of the old cultural programming that makes me think veggies don’t taste good unless they taste like ranch dressing. But as soon as I take the first bite I remember how amazing meat and vegetables and eggs and fruit taste and I don’t need to cover it all with cream sauce and croutons.

That simple cold salad of mixed greens and tomatoes and carrots and corn and eggs and bacon and chicken gave me the energy to power through a pretty busy day for about six hours until I took a break to eat another Larabar. Fruit Tart. And that got me through till dinner, when my wife prepared me an amazing spaghetti squash and meatballs. There was a time, not too long ago, when I would have been starving on 5000 calories before five pm. Today I had less than 700 total through breakfast and lunch. The more I eat nutrient dense food, the smaller my portions become and the longer they sustain me. It really is an amazing thing. Nutrition is so much more complex than “calories in/calories out.”

The idea of a salad for breakfast seems really crazy. When I was younger I remember thinking mockingly of that as “rabbit food.” Even as I got older and started eating a lot more salads I rarely thought of them as “main course” material, even with meat. I wanted something more. Something extra. Even when they were covered in dressing. Now I can eat a fairly small dry salad and run at top shape for hours.

Paleo doesn’t mean every meal has to be a salad, or you have to survive on nothing but shakes or granola bars, or starve yourself to get by. Most days I’m eating grilled meats and roasted vegetables and potatoes and squash and succulent fruits. Every once in a while I’m on the go and in a hurry and have to make due. But I’m finding the more I make the right decisions, even in a pinch, the easier everything becomes.

ChickfilA-Cobb-Salad

My Wife is Amazing

My Wife is Amazing

I had a long day at work today. It wasn’t hard, I have a really great job, but it was long. I went in early, it was busy from the start, and I stayed till close. And I know I … Continue reading

What can I get instead of bread?

I went out to breakfast this morning with my wife. I ordered a meal of breakfast potatoes and eggs and sausage and bacon and loads of veg, and asked them to leave off the cheese. It was great!

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The dish I ordered also comes with a side of toast or biscuits and gravy. So I asked the waitress, “What side options do you have that aren’t bread?” And she offered me pancakes, waffles, oat meal, or a cinnamon roll. I just smiled and told her I’d have it without a side and my wife did the same and then our food showed up and it was delicious and we devoured it and we were both totally full at the end of the meal.

It’s important to remember that the Paleo lifestyle isn’t really a part of the social consciousness yet. At least not to the degree that vegetarianism is for instance. If I had asked her for a “no meat” option she would have understood and not recommended bacon or sausage. But when I asked for a “no bread” option she offered me four bread options. Not because she was being a bitch. Not because she was stupid. She was a perfectly pleasant waitress and she got a good tip. The simple reality is she doesn’t think of pancakes and waffles and oat meal and cinnamon rolls as bread. This is part of what makes bread such a sneaky bastard. It’s like a silent ninja that’s stalking and killing you. Until it’s pointed out to them, most people don’t realize that pizza is bread, and tacos are bread, and soda is bread, and cupcakes are bread, and corn salsa is bread, and cereal is bread, and flour gravy is bread, and fried fish is bread, and linguine is bread, and a pretzel is bread, and rice is bread, and beer is bread, and on and on and on. When I said “no bread,” she just thought I meant “no toast.” And that’s not her fault. That’s our culture.

This is a learning process for all of us. Our species has been surviving on grain products for a long long time. And coming to understand that they might not be good for us, or that we shouldn’t be eating them, or just how ubiquitous they are in our society takes time. I’m still finding out sneaky new ways grain products are used in foods you’d never imagine, like in ice cream or ketchup or even processed meats! If I’m studying this almost every day and still learning new things all the time, how can I expect a waitress who’s never heard of this before to be an expert on what I mean when I say “no bread?”

So be patient with your servers. Be patient with yourself. If you have what you thought was a perfectly Paleo meal and then later realize that there was a grain product in the sauce you thought was safe, let it go. A tablespoon of sauce with a milligram of gluten isn’t going to kill you. If your server misunderstands your dietary preferences and suggests the wrong foods, just smile and nod and get on with your life. The longer we live this lifestyle and the more gracious we are about it with others, the more it will become a part of mainstream culture. I’m already seeing “Paleo” sections on menus and “Paleo” food trucks. As you grow in your understanding of the Paleo journey, the world around you will too. So take it easy. Lean back in your chair, smile at the waitress, tip generously, and maybe later have a small, good-natured chuckle at the one time a waitress recommended waffles as a good “no bread” option.

Grocery challenge day 4/ frittata sort of

Day 4 grocery challenge,

Breakfast eggs and bacon made my Rob.

Lunch was leftover Chicken Marsala. Just as yummy day two 🙂

For dinner I made a frittata! (Sort of..)

**Disclaimer** I know Potatoes are a bit controversial in the paleo world but we eat them. I try to buy the colorful varieties over plain white ones, but if they aren’t part of your plan you can leave em out 🙂 here is the kind we used:

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This is a dish that I make with whatever I have on hand here’s how it went tonight.

Diced up a red onion, a red bell, and several colorful potatos, then I melted some coconut oil in a large skillet, sweated a little garlic in it. Then I added the potatoes and a heavy shake of s&p then let them start cooking down while Rob diced the rest of the veg then I added the peppers and onions cooked them for a few minutes.

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Then in a separate bowl I beat about 6 eggs together with a little more s&p and a dash of cayanne added a can of rotel for a little spice and poured that over the top.

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Here I where it stopped being a frittata. We were way to hungry to wait and let this bake through slow so we just scrambled it all together. It wasn’t as pretty, but it was perfectly delicious, filling comfort food at the end of a long day.

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