Friday, May 31, 2013

What an Offal Day (Part 2-Trotters)

I woke up early this morning to my cell phone beeping. Which, if any of you have ever tried to get a hold of me you know this is a rare occurrence since A) its usually on silent, and B) I usually have no idea where it is. I managed to find it (under the bed) and silence it before Munchkin woke up (thank goodness) only to find a text message from my mom saying that they were putting their old dog down that morning. Overnight her health issues had suddenly gotten worse and they didn't want her to suffer any longer. Sadness.

By the time I responded Munchkin was stirring and was soon awake. So much for sleeping in today. I brought her into the big bed with me and we cuddled for long time. I was trying not to be sad but its hard when so many pieces of your childhood are disappearing. Even though Fat Cat and my folks' dog were pretty old for their breeds its still hard to say good-bye.

For breakfast I opted for something easy: bacon and the Paleo Parents' Frozen Waffles. Oh, lookee here! I already had waffles in the freezer! Score! After managing (somehow) to burn the bacon I soon had breakfast on the table:


Yes, burnt bacon makes me sad too. For lunch I pulled out the piggy feet. Aren't they cute?


After searching the interwebs I decided to go with this Barbequed Pigs Feet. The only BBQ sauce I have in the house is Randy's BBQ Sauce, which isn't paleo-friendly because it has brown sugar in it, but its gluten free, no preservatives (except citric acid), and comes from a small, family run catering service based in Joseph, Oregon. It is the BEST BBQ sauce on the planet and I can't wait for the owner to come up with a paleo-approve sauce (last time we chatted it was currently in the works but still needed some tweaks).

After nestling the piggy feet down with the veggies...


And popping it on the stove to simmer...


I suddenly had several hours of free time on my hands. (I'm betting this could easily be converted to a crockpot recipe.) Did I do anything productive? Well, I did finally wash that stack of dishes, but then I carried a book out on the porch, sat in the sun, and watched Munchkin and the Ol Man run around the yard. Hey, it takes WORK to synthesis Vitamin D.

After the trotters had simmered for two and half hours I pulled them out, added a bit of BBQ sauce, then tossed them in the oven for another hour.


I dug through the veggie drawers and found some sad looking ears of corn and what was left of a head of iceberg.  Here's lunch:


Verdict? TASTY! But probably not something I would do again soon, considering my family. Each bite had a wealth of textures, from the almost-melting layer of skin to the sweet bit of fat, a bit of tender, juicy meat, and chewy tendon. Munchkin alternated between exclamations of "yum!" and "yuck" with each bite, depending on how many different layers she'd gotten on her fork. I loved the different textures, it made the dish interesting and each bite was full of porky goodness, but I kinda doubt Hubby would like them. I think he'd have the same issues Munchkin had. Oh well. We also had more of the apple crisp, I had this hope it would improve over time. Nope, same bland, eh dish. *sigh*

I added the pork bones back to the broth and let it simmer the rest of the afternoon before straining and storing it in the fridge. Tomorrow I'll scrape off the fat, portion it out using an ice cube tray and freeze it for future use. Hooray for bone broth!

While Munchkin napped I cleaned out the car with every intention of washing it once she woke up. Buuuuuut....once she was up I got lazy. The hummingbirds were fighting over the feeder and I ended up sitting on the porch taking pictures.


But you aren't here for the bird pics. For supper I warmed up leftover chicken legs and tore up the rest of the iceberg:



Just so exciting, right? Don't worry, my fridge is now completely bare. Looks like I'll have to go grocery shopping tomorrow.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Top Chef? Not This Gardener

I woke up this morning in a great mood. Funny how getting a full nine hours of solid rest will do that to a person. I was actually hungry and in the mood for runny egg yolks. I fried up spicy chicken sausages in duck fat, plus a couple eggs over easy. Since I had a pan of duck grease just sitting there I tossed in the last of the mushrooms. I wasn't sure how my taste-buds would react to the eggs, especially since they've started tasting nasty no matter how I cook them, so instead of making a mini mountain of food and letting egg yolk drip over everything I separated the poor egg way away from the sausage and mushrooms.

Poor, lonely, egg.


The egg yolk was delicious!!! Especially with a hunk of sausage and mushroom drug through it. The egg white? *shudder* Now I know where the problem lies. Yuck...just the memory!!! Yuck yuck, yuck!! No more eggs whites for this girl, unless they are cooked in something like muffins or cookies or something like that.

Since it was (again) a cold and rainy day I decided to experiment with a fall-time favorite: apple crisp. After searching the web and not finding a recipe that tickled my palate I decided to wing it and see what happens. What could go wrong, right?

For lunch Munchkin and I split the rest of the chicken hearts. Since there weren't that many left I gave most to the kiddo and added carrot sticks and pastrami roll-ups (nuked pastrami, slice of bell pepper, slice of cheddar) to my plate.


This is how good the hearts were: Munchkin was unrolling the bacon, putting it aside, and just eating the hearts.  That's right, she was ignoring the bacon!! I'm not sure whether to be proud (look at my kid eating guts) or horrified (wasted bacon!). Not that the bacon went to waste, she did eventually go back and eat it, but there is the principle of the matter. I mean, chicken hearts are good but they don't trump bacon.

After lunch we tried the crisp.


Verdict? Eh...decent for a first try but the crisp part was rather dry and bland (even with a little heavy cream added) and the apple part needed to be cooked longer, or better apples used, or...something. *shrug* Well, I never said I was a chef. I'll just search the mighty Interwebs again, there's gotta be a stunning apple crisp recipe out there.

While Munchkin napped I nibbled on a square of Theo 70% dark chocolate with sea salt and almonds before doing a workout: 10 (very slow) burpees followed by 20 minutes of weight lifting. The doc cleared me to lift up to 30 pounds so I have no excuse not to be lifting, or working out.

For supper I roasted chicken legs, warmed up the last of the mashed yams, and nuked green beans with butter.


Not the most exciting meal but it was food. I was tempted to do a quick kale saute but that would have included prepping the kale-way too much work compared to opening a can of green beans. By 5pm I was exhausted and ready for bed. As soon as Munchkin was down I finished my work, ignored the sink stacked high with dirty dishes, and crawled into bed.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

What an Offal Day (Part 1-Chicken Hearts)

Chicken hearts and piggy feet, oh my!

Once again I skipped breakfast, just nabbed a bite of Munchkin's yogurt and fruit (no worries, its full-fat, Greek style, no sugar stuff). By midmorning I was starting to get hungry. I'd been craving a combination of sweet and salty so I sliced up a honeydew and wrapped a slice with prosciutto. Mmmmmmmmm-piggy goodness!


And yes, pregnant women should not eat deli meats due to the chances of listeria. I only ate one (which was more than enough), and if you see me eating other deli meat (such as the pastrami a few days ago) it has been reheated in the microwave first. No worries folks.

While Munchkin turned the den into a poorly organized Toys R' Us store I pulled out the chicken hearts I'd defrosted and seasoned yesterday with salt, garlic, and pepper. Chicken hearts are a tasty organ meat that is cheap and easy to cook. They are high in protein and a good source of niacin, Vitamins B6 and B12, folate, iron and zinc. They are most often used in soups and gravies to add flavor but they are very tasty on their own, even if they don't look very appetizing.


For today's experiment I trimmed off the fatty bits, wrapped the hearts in bacon, and baked. I wanted something crunchy and meaty to add to salads and that would make easy finger foods for the up-coming BBQ season. Plus Munchkin loves eating things speared with a toothpick. Fancy food is always tastier!




The verdict? They taste like bacon wrapped cocktail dogs. Honest! They have the same slightly chewy texture and rich, oily, taste. Munchkin inhaled six and kept asking for more. I bet these would make AWESOME faux pigs in a blanket for those who don't eat pork, and no worrying about salt, nitrates, or nitrites (not that I do, for various reasons that I'll explain in later post, but for those who do). They finally cooled enough that I could store them in the fridge, else Munchkin might have eaten the entire batch.

For lunch I pulled out a chicken breast I baked Monday (seasoned with garlic, salt, and red pepper), topped it with slices of Gruyere and the last slice of fresh pineapple, then baked it in the oven till the chicken was hot, the cheese had melted, and the pineapple had a slight browning to it (about 30 minutes at 350 degrees). For my plate I added a side salad while Munchkin had mashed yams and buttered peas.


Leftovers and already cooked proteins folks...its the only way to go.

While Munchkin napped I stared at my toy-covered front room and tried to find the energy to put everything away. Didn't find it. Instead I sat down and tried to ignore the herd of plastic ponies beside me while I nibbled on a dark chocolate with sea salt and almond square. Umm...two squares. I then forced myself off the couch and began putting toys away. I took the opportunity to weed out stuff that was broken or that she hadn't played with in months. Then I moved the couch....oy vey! There's a whole 'nother toy box back here! So that's where all the Little People have been hiding.

When I finally got done the den looked so neat and clean. I threw the rugs into the washer and celebrated by sagging back on the couch. I love when my house is clean. I hate housework but when everything is in its place it makes me feel good for some reason. Of course, about that time Munchkin woke up and had such a blast finding all her "new" toys that soon they were scattered everywhere. Oh well, such is life with toddler.

By suppertime I still wasn't hungry so I just warmed up leftovers for Munchkin. I really should have sat down and eaten something. By the time Munchkin was scrubbed, storied, and in bed I caught myself rifling the cupboards-not exactly hungry for anything specific but with a rumbly belly. I ended up grazing on fruit and coconut butter before finally mixing together a bowl of frozen cherries and full-fat yogurt.

*sigh* You know what sounds good? A big bowl of Manola's Chicken Red Curry, super spicy, with some jasmine rice alongside it. Its actually fairly healthy-coconut milk, spices, chicken, veggies. Even the rice isn't that bad (according to Sisson). The problem lies in that I'd eat the entire order (probably enough for 2-3 people) in one sitting. I guess its a good thing we live so far out that no one delivers cause I'd have them on the phone right this second. Instead I have New Scandinavian Cooking and Andreas is showing me how to make Norwegian carpaccio.

Almost the same thing.

Almost.






Bacon Wrapped Chicken Hearts

1 pound of chicken hearts
1/4 pound (more or less) of bacon
Preferred seasonings (I used salt, garlic and pepper but use any combo that you like. I bet these would be awesome with chili powder) or your favorite marinade.

1. Season chicken hearts and allow to marinate 1 to 24 hours.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3. Cover baking tray with foil and arrange baking rack.

4. Remove fatty bits from chicken hearts.

5. Slice bacon into 2 inch long squares-or about as long as your chicken hearts are.

6. Wrap bacon square around chicken heart, securing with a toothpick.

7. Place bacon wrapped heart on baking tray.

8. Bake about 30 minutes, or until bacon is crispy.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Hubby headed out for a week long trip to LA to smooze with his southern team but not before frying up a couple eggs for Munchkin while I slowly crawled out of bed. Once upon a time I was a morning person-up before the sun, now? Not so much. In fact, if I could sleep till noon every day that would be awesome. Someone convince the toddler to sleep in.

For breakfast I had a banana. Eh, just not hungry when I wake up anymore.

Since Hubby's out of town I decided to pull out the chicken hearts and pig's feet I got last week to defrost and experiment with a few recipes. Who knows, I might start slipping some offal in his meals without him realizing it-aren't I a sneaky bugger? Yeah, I know.

For lunch I piled up a bunch of leftover meaty goodness on my plate and added a salad:


Easy stuff.

While Munchkin napped I attacked the mountain of laundry and finally found the floor of the pantry. Someone remind me not to wait till no one has undies before washing clothes again. While I babysat the washer and dryer I snacked on a bar of dark chocolate (yeah, I ate the whole thing) and a nectarine.

For supper I roasted half a chicken on top of a pile of veggies following Nom Nom Paleo's Easiest Roast Chicken Ever recipe...


...and nuked a couple yams that were peeled and smashed with butter (for Munchkin).


Supper is served!


I hate when Hubby is gone, but man is it nice to have full control of the remote control (new episodes of New Scandinavian Cooking on the DVR!). Plus, there's nothing like being able to hog all the blankets and pillows without someone stealing them back in the middle of the night.

Mmmmmmm...sleep....zzzzzzzzzzz

Monday, May 27, 2013

Happy Memorial Day!

Remembering those who gave the ultimate sacrifice. 


Hope you all had a safe Memorial Day weekend!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

SCA and The Wild Duck Cafe

By some miracle we all slept in this morning, putting us a little behind schedule but oh well. After finally rolling out of bed and into street clothes we decided to go out for breakfast, something we rarely do. I love Munchkin but it can be hit or miss on taking her out to eat-if the service is too slow she can get pretty impatient, and if there are a lot of other kids she tends to pay more attention to them than her food.

We decided to go to Our Daily Bread, a little restaurant in our village housed in a converted church. The prices are a tad higher than other places but the food is always tasty and they are always willing to make changes to the dish at the customer's request. I had the Mexi Scramble: two eggs scrambled with green peppers, onions, mushrooms, ham, cheddar, Jack cheese, and salsa. I opted for the fruit and cottage cheese sides.


It was tasty though not as good as I remember. I have noticed that the further along I get the more eggs taste nasty. Even our eggs are starting to get a sulfer-y, rank taste.*sigh* Darn pregnancy food aversions. Have no idea what I'm talking about? Click here and read Melissa Hartwig's (of Whole9 fame) take on it, I can't explain it any better than her. With Munchkin it was spicy foods, which was almost worse than giving up bread. I mean, I'm the type that dumps Frank's Hot Sauce on just about everything and orders my Thai food with Thai-style spice, preferably 5 star level. Even so about 3 months into the pregnancy I couldn't handle extra black pepper on my food, let alone anything that would be considered mildly spicy. This time around it looks to be eggs.

After breakfast we headed south to the Egil Skallagrimsson Memorial Tournament, an SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism) event hosted by the local SCA group (Barony of Adiantum). Hubby and I have been kicking around the idea of joining, being the nerds that we are, and  I figured it would be fun to check it out. They were also hosting two classes I really wanted to attend: a walk about identifying local edible plants, and a cooking class demonstrating the different methods (from different cultures and time periods) for cooking over an open fire. Sadly, our sleeping in nixed the classes but it was still fun to check out the merchants and watch the sword fighting.


My little darling, who loves princesses and dress-up, immediately went for the swords and knives in Merchant Row and spent most of our time there watching the fights. Hmm....warrior princess in the making?

Afterwards we met with my BIL and his awesome wife to try out a new (to us) restaurant: The Wild Duck Cafe.


I had my doubts, BIL described it having higher level pub food, basically hamburgers and the like. My experience with hamburger/pub food joints has not been great since cutting out grains and sugar. Usually its a pain to try and get things withheld or changed, or most of the items have stuff added (like breadcrumbs to the hamburger meat) that can't be changed. So, I have to admit I wasn't looking for much when we walked in but I was pleasantly surprised.

The place is located close to Matthew Knight Arena so its not surprising that most of the decor is yellow and green. University of Oregon sports highlights adorn the walls, nicely blended with metal art of local wildlife. The atmosphere was nice and relaxing, with high booths that provided privacy and noise control (always something important when dining with a toddler). There was also plenty of outdoor seating but with the inconsistent sprinkles we opted for a booth.

We were seated immediately (after Munchkin was given her choice of a rubber ducky. Miss I-Love-Swords opted for the Princess Duck) and had an awesome, attentive server. The brunch menu consisted of your usual different types of eggs and staples like biscuits and gravy but also thing like Cajun Grilled Salmon Benedict and Oregon Truffle Burger. Their meat is locally sourced and ground in-house, with produce coming from local growers and organic whenever possible. What I especially liked was the big, red, words at the bottom of the menu "Please tell your server if you have a food allergy. We have gluten-free buns available." Always nice to see a place willing to work with those who don't/can't eat the norm.

I went with the Cranberry Duck Salad-field greens with dried cranberries, candied hazelnuts (sugar, I know), and almond-breaded duck tenders, with pineapple-ginger vinaigrette.


It was very tasty-the vinaigrette was a little sweet making me wonder if there was sugar in it, but the spice of the ginger  blended great with the slightly gamy (just enough so you knew you weren't eating chicken) tenders. The greens were crisp and fresh and the cranberries added the right amount of tartness. I could have done without the candied hazelnuts, they were almost too sweet, but there weren't so many of them that it ruined the dish. Munchkin got the mini sliders from the kid's menu (and promptly dismantled them, eating mostly the meat) while Hubby chose the Fighting Duck Cheesesteak: roasted tri-tip with sauteed sweet bell peppers, mushrooms, onions, and provolone on a gluten-free bun. It must have been good  because I wasn't able to get a pic of it. I can easily see us coming back for more, and it was a lot of fun visiting with the family.

The plan for the afternoon was to weed all the planters but the rain kept us indoors. We ended up doing some housework and being lazy.

Toward evening I suddenly realized I hadn't taken out any proteins to defrost for supper so, even though I wanted to cook, I didn't have anything. Grrrr!! Instead I warmed up the leftovers (that we should have had last night). I ended up with chicken soup, topped with roasted nori:



After Munchkin went to bed I was really craving some ice cream but made do with full-fat Greek yogurt with a handful of frozen cherries mixed in. I really need an ice cream maker.

Toodles folks!




Congrats to the Oregon State Beaver Baseball Team!! 2013 Pac-12 Champions!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy

I love it when, at the end of the day, all of my to-do list is checked off, even if it makes the day long and exhausting.

I woke up with an upset stomach and skipped breakfast in favor of a big glass of ice water. While I was sipping on my aqua Hubby whipped up a couple eggs for Munchkin and then headed into town to rent a garden tiller. I really need to buy my own but the one I want is muy pricey.

We spent the morning tilling the garden (which had finally dried out enough that it wasn't such a mudpit) and planting the seedlings we started last month. I could almost hear happy sighs from my baby squashes-I really should have up-potted them a week or two (or three) ago. The garden is starting to actually look like a garden!

For lunch I was pretty beat and opted for something easy: pastrami rolled around cheddar slices and dipped in mustard, with carrots and fresh pineapple. Yes, the pastrami has a touch of sugar in it-I really need to learn how to make my own.


I ended up making a second plate of exactly the same stuff since Munchkin kept stealing my pastrami rolls. She was obviously starving since she ate her entire lunch as well (is there a growth spurt in the near future? geez, I hope not, the kid outgrows clothes fast enough as it is).

After her nap I herded everyone into the car and we headed to my favorite nursery, Johnson Brothers Greenhouses, to check out the weekend sales. They had buy one-get one free tomatoes!!! Like I really need more tomatoes but...a couple wandered into the cart. Honestly, you can never too many tomatoes, especially neat heirloom breeds. Fact of life.


On the way home we stopped and picked up more Vito Coco Coconut Waters. Coconut water is nature's Gatorade. I don't really care for plain coconut water but the grocery store was having a sale on the flavored waters and both Munchkin and I are a huge fan of them. They are naturally sugary but as the occasional treat, after a hard workout, or diluted with filtered water they are a great substitute for less healthy drinks. I especially love how simple Vito Coco's  ingredients are: coconut water and a puree of different fruits (oranges, passion fruit, pineapple, peach, and mango) depending on what the flavor it is. Simple, healthy, and quite tasty.

By the time we left the grocery store I was exhausted, all I wanted to do was go home and crawl into bed. I told Hubby I flat out wasn't cooking supper, so it was leftovers or...he offered to "cook". Yep, take-out pizza. *sigh* I really gotta get this guy interested on the creation part of food instead of just the inhalation part. You'd think with his chemistry background he'd be more interested in cooking. He once jokingly asked for Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking, which is right up his alley but...that price tag...

Anyhow, at least he got a "low-carb" (I don't even want to know) version with tons of meat. And yes Paleo Police, I had a slice, plus two apricots. I really need to be better prepared for days when I'm just dragging by suppertime. There's a heck of a lot of them in my near future (and exhausted breakfasts and lunches as well) so I gotta get it figured out.

Tomorrow is going to be an even busier day so I'm hitting the sack early. Night!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Its Friday!

Whoo-hoo its Friday!

For breakfast I had an apple and a spoonful of coconut butter. What can I say? I just wasn't hungry. Hubby fried eggs in butter for himself and Munchkin so at least they filled their bellies with good, healthy, fats and proteins.

Late in the morning we headed to the barn. Pony's new mommy met us there and soon she was off to her new home. It was sad to say good-bye but I know she is going to an excellent home where she'll get the attention I just can't give right now, and its really not fair to her to stand around being bored. Being pony-less sucks though. (No worries, in a few years we'll get Munchkin(s) a pony and we'll be back at the barn.)

Afterwards we packed up all my horsey gear, said good-bye to the barn (for now), and ran into town to get some groceries. I didn't have a long list but I was running low on kale and a few other items. After spending more than I planned at Market of Choice (I even stuck to my list! somewhat!) we hit the local grocery store where I discovered pig's feet and chicken hearts. Hmmm....

Yep, I got them. No idea what I'm going to do with them yet, but heck, the look on Hubby's face when he saw the trotters in the bag was worth the purchase. Anyone have a tried n' true recipe they want to share?

By the time we got home it was getting late and we were all starving. I warmed up a couple leftover grilled Polish dog with a little cheddar, then added a big spoonful of saurkraut:


Yum! I plan to get a couple cabbages from the Lane County Farmer's Market tomorrow and try out Diane Sanfilippo's (of Balanced Bites) raw sauerkraut recipe. I knew it would take a week or more to be ready though, so I picked up Bubbies Old Fashioned Sauerkraut from Market of Choice to tide me over. I love how it only has cabbage, water, and salt; just like how I make it. I really need to eat more fermented foods (and so do you).

The sun started to peek out in the afternoon and by suppertime it was feeling early summer-ish. I ground up a batch of 50/50 burgers and grilled them with fresh pineapple...



...melted a bit of Gruyere over the burgers, layered everything together, wrapped it in lettuce and stuffed it in my face. (Oh, and I baked sweet potato chips as a side). It was so good I had to have another. Ma belly is haaaaaaaaaaaapppy!!

After sudsing down Munchkin and getting her to bed I waddled to the couch. Oooomph! That second burger may not have been such a good idea, belly still happy but very, very, VERY full. Darn kid is starting to take up real estate.

Happy Friday y'all!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Another Rainy Day

Hubby graciously cooked breakfast this morning, giving me the luxury of sleeping in. I hogged all the pillows and blankets, made myself a nice little nest right in the middle of the bed, and proceeded to just reveled in the twenty or so minutes of pure bliss. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz....

I finally rolled out of bed and attempted to become active. Didn't work very well, what can I say, I'm solar powered. These cold, rainy days put me in a state of hibernation that would put a grizzly to shame. I wasn't very hungry so munched on an apple and a lemon blueberry muffin...


...before spending the morning doing website updates for a client.

Lunch was leftover roast and salad:


The roast was a thousand times better shredded and soaked in the pot liquor-must remember this for next time. For supper Hubby requested something porky so I pulled a package of pork chops from the freezer to defrost before convincing Munchkin she really needed a nap. I'll spare you the horrific details but there was much screaming and dramatic sobbing. At least I know she'll always have an acting career to fall back on.

For supper I seared the pork chops...


...then finished them in the oven.


I whipped up a cheese sauce with heavy cream, cream cheese, cheddar, and Gruyere, poured it over frozen broccoli, then slid it into the oven next to the chops. Hubby loves cheese, and cheesy veggies, and I wanted to make him a favorite dish. See? A couple extra minutes sleep make this Mama a happy camper.

Here's supper:


Afterwards I enjoyed an ounce of Theo's Organic 70% Mint Dark Chocolate while catching up on Castle. Nathan Fillion is dreamy *swoon*.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

It Feels Like Autumn

I woke up this morning to pouring down rain, wind, and falling temperatures. It felt so much like October I expected to look outside and see that the trees had changed color. Nope, no time warp, just a chilly day. While I was watching the rain fall Dad sent me a picture of their back porch:


OK, I'll stop whining about it being cold and rainy.

For breakfast Munchkin and I whipped up a batch of Lemon and Blueberry Muffins from the new cookbook.



They were very tasty, the combination of lemon and blueberry were bright and summery and the recipe was quick and easy to put together, even with the assistance of a starving toddler. This recipe is definitely a keeper.

Since it was so cold I built a small fire to warm up the house. The smell of wood smoke with the sound of pouring rain put me in the mood for an easy, autumn-ish supper. I defrosted a tri-tip roast and tossed it in the crock-pot with bone broth, half an onion, 5 garlic gloves, a bay leaf, and lots of carrots.


For lunch I threw together a huge salad made up of leftover grilled chicken and steak, green salad, and green bean salad.


Apparently my eyes were much bigger than my stomach because I couldn't finish it. Oh well, the chickens will love the rest, and now I have a clean fridge!

By mid-afternoon the house was filled with the aroma of beefy pot roast. I seriously debated making an apple pie (yep, a recipe from "Gather") but decided that was too much work. The cold weather had me feeling extremely lazy so I compromised by lighting apple-cinnamon candles. Ahhh.....if I close my eyes it could be harvest season.

Throughout the afternoon I grazed on an apple, an ounce of dark chocolate, and several spoonfuls of coconut butter. I wasn't really hungry, just had a horrible case of the nibbles.

I let the roast cook on low for 6 hours, then pulled it from the crock pot and let it rest while I strained the veggies from the liquid and prepped the salad. Here's my plate:


The carrots were awesome, but the meat was just a tad dry, turning me into a McKayla Maroney twin.


*sigh* Oh well. I shredded the rest of the roast and added some of the pot liquor to it. It'll be great for lettuce cups, frittatas, as is... I love having extra protein around. Once I got Munchkin tucked into bed I settled down with an ounce of dark chocolate to watch the premier of MasterChef.

And yeah, I got emotional when George auditioned his Greek Wedding Soup. What can I say, I'm a sap. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Epic Scrubbing

The house felt a little emptier this morning *sigh*

For breakfast I ate supper leftovers. No pic (you don't want to see the crud I ate.) I know, I know, I should have just tossed them but there wasn't much left and I hate to waste food.

Munchkin and I spent the morning scrubbing the house. Fat Cat had become increasingly incontinent and though I'd cleaned after ever mess it felt like the house needed a good ceiling-to-floor scouring. And, while I hate housework, there was something therapeutic about scrubbing floors and moving furniture around. I tossed out a few rugs that had been stained, debated on completely changing the furniture layout of the living room, and had a good cry.

I didn't eat lunch, just sipped on mugs of broth from yesterday's soup all afternoon.


I ended up drinking most of the broth and had to add another container of goose stock to make it soup again.

While Munchkin took a nap I made the Ol Man a new doggy bed, then scrubbed some more. I think the old guy likes it (he's under strict orders not to get so much as a sniffle for a couple years):


Since I was in such a cleaning mood I cleaned the fridge. Supper was a mess of all the leftovers I found: grilled chicken and roast beef, green bean salad with artichokes and olives, green salad, sliced strawberries, mashed yams, and corn on the cob. Here's my plate:

Monday, May 20, 2013

Good Pig

This morning was cold and gloomy. Munchkin and I curled up on the couch and vegged out to cartoons till our tummies started rumbling. What to cook for breakfast? I was in the mood for something, hot, thick, and creamy-like biscuits and gravy, or maybe potato soup. Alas, I didn't have the ingredients for either.

Since my stomach was threatening to eat itself I tossed some sliced strawberries in with the last of full fat Greek yogurt and nibbled on those while looking through my new cookbook. The lemon blueberry muffins looked awesome but I was down to three eggs...not enough. I got about four bites before Munchkin appeared and asked for the rest. *sigh* The sacrifices we make. Since I still couldn't decide what to make I laid half a package of bacon on a tray and threw it in the oven. Bacon solves all problems. While it cooked I ate a spoonful of coconut butter.


As Munchkin said "good pig, good pig". She somehow managed to smear bacon grease on the cover of "Gather" but I'm pretty sure Hayley and Bill would approve (plus it wiped off). By the time we'd polished off the bacon neither one of us was hungry, but I was still in the mood for something cold-weathery-ish. A quick look through the freezer confirmed no chicken stock (eek!) but I did have several quarts of goose stock from our Yule goose. Hmmm...

I defrosted the stock, along with a package of chicken breasts and proceeded to throw together a quick soup. I poached the chicken, added it to the stock along with thick cut carrots, celery and onion. I let it simmer for 30 minutes while I chased Munchkin around the yard and picked a mess of spinach. I washed and sliced the spinach into thin strips. Once the carrots were tender I added the spinach in.

Viola! Soup is served:

I added a bit of roasted nori for the all the good minerals and nutrients it provides. I don't normally like seaweed but the nori went great with the soup, I ended up eating an entire sheet, except for the two bites I managed to get Munchkin to try. She pronounced the first bite yucky, then sneaked a second piece from my bowl.

Hubby came home early and we took our cat to the vet. He had been sick and was getting worse. The news was not good and we made the decision to put him to sleep. When I was 15 I watched him being born and he'd been with me ever since-it was a hard decision but I know he's now comfortable and out of pain.

I was pretty down the rest of the day and supper was not paleo approved. Sorry, no pic.