Shrimpies and Superfoods!

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Spring time has actually started showing its face here in Texas now. Rainy days and nights, little bit of thunder. It’s quite nice. :)
I have a salad for you today, my fellow readers… And it fits the summer salad category more, but its Texas and the weather is so bipolar that, well you can eat it whenever ;)

So this is a superfood salad I assume that is what you would refer to it as.  Kale, Swiss Chard, pecans, purple onions, dried blueberries and green apples.  Deliciousness in a bowl. Yes. Paired with a light vinaigrette. Winning!   So onwards with this awesomeness! I really do like Kale… in fact, its slightly bitter taste is growing on me. I like how at first its kind of sweet then goes bitter and when you pair it with sweet toppings it tastes wonderful and balanced. Yay! As I was making this I also thought that it needed some meat, so I added some little shrimpies to the mix :) Yes, I said shrimpies.. because I’m cool like that.. ;)

The wagon pictured below was just so cool I couldn’t resist sharing it with you guys :)

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This wagon is so awesome, I couldn't resist not sharing it with you guys!

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Recipe time! Needs a cool name.

Delightful Kale Salad

Serves 6-8

1 bunch Kale, chopped

1 bunch Swiss Chard, chopped

1/2 purple onion, thinly sliced

1 granny smith apple, thinly sliced

1 c pecans

1/4 c dried blueberries (or other dried fruit you like)

2 T organic unfiltered apple cider vinegar

2 T brown sugar

1/2 t salt

1 t black pepper

5-6 T olive oil (or walnut oil)

 

Method:

Chop, rinse and dry your Kale and Chard.  Prep all of your other ingredients.

Make the vinaigrette. Mix the vinegar and brown sugar together. Whisk to dissolve the sugar a bit, add salt and pepper whisk again. Then drizzle in the oil as you create and emulsified dressing! Congratulations you just made a simple yet elegant salad. :)

If you chose to add shrimp like I did here is what I did :)

Shrimpies: 

2 lbs shrimp peeled and deveined.

2 t smoked paprika

2 lemons, juiced

2 limes, juiced

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 T coconut oil

Method:

After your little shrimpies are prepped and ready to go. Mix them with the paprika, lime and lemon juices, salt and pepper. Let it mellow together for a bit as you toss your salad all up.

Heat your pan add the oil and then saute those bad boys up. Top your salad with them and enjoy!

 

I hope you enjoyed this salad recipe and as always let me know if you added or changed this recipe in any way. Get creative! Make it your own! :)

-April

 

 

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Day. Made. In 3…2…1…

Hello!

I’ll cut right to the chase… with a cliche! ;)

Today started out as a super retarded day at work. Someone called in, someone was out because of a serious cut to the finger…. So picture this. Three people on the line, and you have five stations to take care of… see the problem?

Well it is not too big of a problem because this seems to happen a lot. But its okay! We did it and it was semi-fun! Everything starts getting crazy because you’re having to run here and there and then mid prep you’re called to go take some retarded OSHA Blood-borne Pathogen test… A test that seemed to NEVER end! Which you know, it obviously did otherwise I wouldn’t be here writing this.. ;) After that finally back onto prepping for the day. I have about 25 minutes left before rush hits and then I remember I completely forgot to marinade the chicken for my special… Are you freaking kidding me?! — I really did say that, out loud. Maybe a little louder than I should have, but I could not believe I forgot to do that. I even had it on my prep list for the day. So rush rush rush got that marinade ready and the chicken in! BOOM! I win! All before rush hit. End of story… well end of prep. Lunch rush hits and it was interesting as always.

kale special

My special! As I promised in my post with the recipe. Here is what it looked like all pretty and almost perfect!

morning

 

Sunrise on the way to work this morning. I know its not safe taking pictures and driving, but I couldn’t resist not taking a picture. Isn’t it beautiful?!

Here is where the day gets so much more interesting and fun and exciting and any other way to describe being happy feeling… SO, when I finally get a chance to step out for just a second to go to the restroom is when the day got a bajillion times better!!!  In the bathroom stall two girls walk in the room and were talking and the whole time I’m thinking I know that voice..  So I walk out of the stall and OH MY GOSH!!! It was Kylee!!!! I’m pretty sure people heard us out in the cafe, but we were screaming like little girls and hugging and laughing etc. It was awesome. Made my day and it was such a nice surprise! haha She was there being interviewed to play on the weekends in the cafe! How cool is that?! AHH!! It was awesome.

After that wonderful ending to work I then got to go hang out with the kids I nanny for. The little girl and her friend had piano today so it was me and the boy and my cousin came over for a play date! We went to Sonic then the park and drained some energy. Those kids are so goofy. They met some boy at the park and played for a while. And! the little boy they met complimented my lanyard!! He knew who Gravedigger was! WHAT?! I was shocked and proud at the same time and I didn’t even know the boy. When he said Gravedigger was his favorite I was like Oh yeah!!  Then I asked him if he liked the old or new driver and he replied with “The old one, duh!” I wanted to hug that kid. That’s the right answer little boy! Good job!

kids playing

After that, came home. Now here comes the good part…. DINNER! YAY!  I made grilled Balsamic Ginger Pork Chops with roasted Broccoli and Butternut squash with a twist. As always, has to have the April flair on it!

Nutty Vanilla Butternut Squash 

1 Butternut Squash, cut into 1/2″-1″ chunks

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400.

Now starting with those ingredients put them on a baking sheet and toss the squash in olive oil and the salt and pepper.

Roast for about 20-25 minutes.

 

Then

Coconut Oil

1 Tbsp Ginger, minced

1 1/2 tsp Vanilla or Vanilla Bean Paste (I always use vanilla bean paste)

1 Cup Hazelnuts (You may use any nut you prefer)

Lemon Juice

Salt/Pepper

 

About 5 minutes before the squash is cooked heat a skillet over medium-high heat with the coconut oil. Add the hazelnuts toss to coat and cook for a few minutes until aromatic.

Add the squash toss to combine.

Add the rest of the ingredients and the lemon juice and seasonings will be to taste.

Then enjoy! :)

 

You will notice that I use Ginger A LOT… and that’s because its good for you!! And it tastes good :)

Anyways, this is probably the best way I have ever had Butternut Squash. Its just the right amount of sweetness you need but its not overpowering at the same time. Soooo good! With the roasted Broccoli, you can’t really go wrong with roasting anything.. I don’t think? As for the Pork Chops, anytime I use Balsamic Vinegar as a marinade I always and I mean ALWAYS grill it. It creates a nice caramelization on the meat and tastes wonderful.

Finished off dinner with some homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies :) … Paleo of course!

I hope you enjoy this recipe and let me know if you change it up or anything!

-April

 

Paleo-tastic!

Hey guys,

So all day today when I was trying to get together my list to go grocery shopping I kept asking myself what in the world do I want to cook for dinner? Something simple? Gourmet? WHAT?!

So I got on Pinterest… my weakness.. Probably any female with an internet connection has this Pinterest-coma weakness. Am I right? Anyways, I typed “Paleo Dinner Ideas” into the search bar and low and behold a bunch of recipes pop up. Jackpot!! Scrolling, scrolling, scrolling didn’t see anything I really wanted to put forth the effort to make tonight nor for the rest of the week for that matter. Then I came across this awesome recipe for Thai Basil Beef (in meatball form). It looked amazing. I clicked on the link, which led me to a Paleo blog and they have some awesome recipes on there. I have to start looking for more of these types of blogs, especially since I am new to this whole Paleo thing…

Problem solved I had decided what I was going to make for dinner tonight as well as the rest of the week. I just kept adding more things to my list until I had five dinner ideas.  And tonight we had Thai Basil Beef meatballs with my homemade tomato sauce and yellow squash spaghetti. It was delicious.

As you know I am new to this whole blog thing so if I do something wrong with linking or tagging another blog in my posts please inform me! It will be greatly appreciated. And that way I don’t upset anyone in the process. Thank you in advance. :)

Thai Basil Beef Meatballs

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 lbs ground beef (preferably 80/20)

1/2 c almond flour

2 eggs

1 roasted red pepper, about 1/3 c, chopped

1/4 c wheat-free soy sauce or coconut aminos

1 t fish sauce

1 t sriracha, chile sauce or hot sauce

1 handful fresh basil leaves, chopped

1 lime, zested

salt

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

In a large bowl, whisk together all ingredients (except the beef). Now add the beef and mix well, making sure everything is thoroughly combined.

Portion out the mixture, using a cookie scoop, onto a parchment or silicone/silpat lined baking sheet.

Pop in the oven until cooked through, and the tops have slightly browned (you may need to switch to broil), about 20-30 minutes.

source: http://www.health-bent.com/

And then I just served it with boiled yellow squash noodles and my homemade tomato sauce!

Also for another sauce, and sadly, it is not paleo approved… But I wanted to experiment with another sauce because I was not entirely sure if tomato sauce would pair well with these meatballs since they were going to be a whole new flavor other than normal hamburger meat with italian spices etc.  So I was looking in my refrigerator and I saw mushrooms, fish sauce and lime juice. Standing there for a minute trying to put a few things together in my head I came up with a fascinating sauce! It was a lot of different flavors that paired nicely with the meatballs. I knew there was lime zest in the meatballs so why not have lime juice in the sauce? Hello, not wasting any food items here so using zest AND juice from the lime. Mission accomplished. uh buhzinga!! :) Fish sauce? already in the meatball? Say what?! Yet another reused ingredient. Yes!

Though it may not be completely Paleo, its still 90% Paleo.. eh? eh? Still count? No! I know it has alcohol in it, but it was rather tasty!

Mushroom Sauce (that needs a clever name)

1 t coconut oil

6 Baby bella mushrooms, sliced

1/2 c Red Wine

2 T Balsamic Vinegar

1/2 t Raw Honey

1 t Fish sauce

Juice of 1 lime

salt and pepper to taste

Heat coconut oil in saute pan and add mushrooms, cook until water from the mushrooms start to come about.

Add the rest of your ingredients and reduce in the pan. Season accordingly and enjoy over those meatballs!

Their blog has pretty pictures along with the meatballs. I apologize for not posting any pictures.

Thank you again for tuning in! I will try and post every other day and bring you more recipes. Enjoy!

-April