Monthly Archives: March 2015

Squishy Squash (baked butternut squash recipe)

I have this memory from early in our marraige eating some kind of squash. I’m pretty sure it was spaghetti squash, or maybe butternut, either way I thought it was so gross!
I never, ever wanted to eat squash again. Luckily it wasn’t a special request in my house, so I haven’t really eaten it for about 10 years. I’m pretty sure no one in my house missed it either.
Well, welcome to paleo! Where we eat more meats, fruits, and vegetables (including squash….)
I first started with spaghetti squash. If you put red sauce on it, its pretty good. (Actually it’s really good!) eventually I found a recipe for pizza spaghetti pie on www.paleomg.com that contains spaghetti squash. It is one of my favorite paleo recipes of all time!

Then I tried a stuffed butternut squash recipe. Also really good.

In the fall a friend of mine reccommended I try acorn squash. Surprisingly, also tasted great! The longer you cook it, the sweeter it gets! It’s a great side dish with a little honey and cinnamon on top.

I guess I’m converted! Squash is pretty darn good!

I had done the stuffed butternut squash a few times and although we all liked it, I wanted to find another yummy recipe for the butternut.
This recipe turned out to be super simple, with easy ingredients, and my husband and I really liked it.
I’m working on Mr.Paleo Jr. He says he doesn’t like it, but sometimes I’m able to trick him, and he eats it.
Maybe over time he will learn to love it too.
Not only is squash yummy, it lasts for a long time. I’ll buy one on my weekly shopping trip, and if I keep it in the cool dry pantry it seems to last for a couple weeks. As long as it’s not cut, it lasts and lasts.

pizza spaghetti pie
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stuffed butternut squash

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Acorn squash

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And here’s my newest squash recipe. It’s a great side dish. Perfect alternative to potatoes.

Baked Butternut Squash

Remove the skin and seeds from one butternut squash
Cut squash into bite sized cubes.
Toss squash in a bowl with
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Bake for 30 mins at 400 degrees
Yum yum!

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Reduce, reuse, recycle food?

One big thing my husband and I have noticed about eating paleo is that we hardly waste any food.
In the past we were constantly throwing away food. Veggies, meat, leftovers, all in the trash.
It was kinda sad, but I guess we never really thought about it all that much.
We do not eat out half as much as we used to. I love making big healthy dinners so that we both have leftovers for lunch the next day. My husband and I are often on opposite schedules so we always need leftovers. We also spend more money on healthy food so it’s painful to throw our food/money in the garbage. Plus, the food we have been cooking and eating tastes delicious! Why wouldn’t we eat it??

So the point I guess that I am getting to is: your leftovers don’t have to be boring. You can “reuse” or “recycle” them to make something else, which is “reducing” food waste.
Here’s a great example from this past week.

My husband bbq’d this delicious tritip. He made a dry rub with coconut sugar, salt and pepper, and whatever paleo friendly spices he could find. I roasted a butternut squash with s&p and oil&balsamic as a side dish.
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The next night we had about 1/2 of the tritip left over.
I cut it up into cubes, put it in a pan, poured salsa and a little water on top and let it simmer down until most of the liquid was gone. I made a batch of paleo tortillas, sliced some fresh avacado and we ate delicious beef tacos for dinner! Yum!

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The next morning we still had meat and tortillas leftover. I scrambled up some eggs with the meat, wrapped it all in a tortilla and had a breakfast burrito for breakfast!

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That’s 3 completely different meals from one tritip!

Shredded crockpot pork makes great leftover meals too. Plain with sides, tacos, nachos, breakfast scrambles.
I often double casseroles and “rice” dishes also to eat throughout the week. The easier you make it for yourself, the more you will enjoy eating this way. My advice is, cook often, make a lot, and be creative with your leftovers! And don’t forget to HAVE FUN!

So Fancy (turkey stuffed Swiss chard with marinara)

I feel like my family has started to get into a food routine. We have our 5-7 favorite paleo dinner recipes, and we just rotate them. This is not at all how I want dinner to be. I do not want to go back to eating b-o-r-i-n-g dinners! I have decided to try a new recipe at least once a week.
Last week I did a photo shoot for a friend of mine that lives out in the country. She sent me home with fresh eggs and beautiful Swiss chard.
I have never bought or cooked Swiss chard before, so I tried a super easy recipe which was just chopping it and sautéing it in olive oil with salt and pepper and some spices. It turned out really good, and the colors were spectacular!
This week when I delivered her disc of photos to her, she again gave me fresh eggs and Swiss chard, so I decided to step it up a notch on my recipe.
Since I’m not familiar with it, I literally googled “Swiss chard recipes” I found a few that looked really good, but one in particular stood out to me.
I had to slightly alter it to make it paleo, but that was kinda fun. It called for bread crumbs that I changed to almond flour. It also called for beef, but I had already thawed ground turkey. The original recipe had you make a tomato sauce, but I have found a few in a jar that are paleo friendly, and really good too. So here’s what I came up with:

1lb ground turkey
1 med shallot minced
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper
14 oz can of chicken broth
8 large Swiss chard leaves
1 jar (no sugar added organic) marinara

In a large mixing bowl combine all ingredients except broth, leaves and marinara
Separate meat mixture into 8 oblong rolls
Cut stems off of leaves
Place meat into each leaf
Roll tightly and place seam side down into a nonstick pan
Pour chicken broth over rolls, cover, and bring to a boil
Reduce heat to med and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes until cooked through
Discard broth then pour warmed marinara over the rolls.
Enjoy!
When I plated them I felt so fancy! Like a professional chef or something! 🙂

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Bacon, Bacon, Bacon!

Since starting paleo, there’s one huge thing that has dramatically changed for me. It is my new found love of bacon! And it is growing by the day! I don’t eat it everyday, and when I do eat it, it’s one or two slices, but it is so GOOD.
Prior to paleo I hated bacon. My exact words were “bacon is disgusting. It’s greasy but dry, and chewy but crunchy, it’s just so gross”
I honestly thought it was the nastiest food on earth.
I also never ate pork. No pork chops, no bacon, no pork roast. Absolutely no pork!
Even as a kid, if my mom made pork chops, I HATED them.
When I came home from the hospital after having PaleoJr my grandma made me a beautiful homemade meal of scalloped potatoes and pork roast.
I was sooooo hungry that I ate two helpings. After that I was a little bit more open to eating pork roast, but nothing more. Only recently I’ve bought and prepare pork fort family. Things have sure changed in the past 7 months. Today if you look in my freezer and my fridge you will see ground pork, pork chops, pork sausage, and bacon.
Pork is a great source of protien, it’s usually inexpensive, and pretty easy to prepare.
Tonight I made thin cut pork chops for the first time. I did over cook them, but the flavor was pretty good. Next time I’ll cook them less time in the oven, and hopefully they will keep some of their moisture.
I have found many great paleo recipes for ground pork too. Google “paleo ground pork _________” whatever you feel like. Meatballs, pasta, meatloaf, etc. I guarantee you’ll find something great! Paleomg has a great recipe for ground pork stuffed butternut squash. I’ve also made a ground pork “pasta” out of spaghetti squash.
The easiest and easiest clean up, way to cook bacon:
Cover a baking sheet with foil
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
Lay bacon slices on foil without overlapping them
Cook for 15 minutes checking at 10 mins and then every 2 mins until evenly cooked.
Lay slices on paper towels to absorb grease
And then eat it up! Yum!
Here’s a photo of tonight’s dinner. PaleoJrs plate. Sliced cucumber, sweet potato fries and baked pork chop 🙂

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