Thursday, March 31, 2011

You're Favorite Berry Shortcake

So today was just one of those blah days.  I don't have a new dinner recipe to post from tonight, I had NO interest in really doing anything after being in the hospital for school all day and then running outside in the rain tonight at the gym.  I just wanted to come home and take a warm shower finish my homework and go to sleep.  You can still make a healthy meal when you're tired and unmotivated, you don't have to resort to pizza and take-out ( even though we would all love to).  I always have chicken breast in my freezer, I tossed some on the grill and put it over romaine and whatever veggies I had hanging around in my refrigerator.  High score on the quick and easy scale, mediocre score on the satisfying scale.  But hey, if eating Paleo was always delicious and satisfying EVERYONE would do it all the time!  Kudos to those who eat strict Paleo 7 days a week, I know I need a cheat at least once a week or I'd go a little nutty.  But what if we could have a cheat that wasn't really cheating that much?  This dessert I made the other night when Colin was over for dinner because I wouldn't hear the end of it if there was no treats for Colin after dinner. For my Raspberry and Blueberry Shortcakes I used the Recipe for Protein Pancakes that I got from Marks Daily Apple , and I also used the recipe for heavy whipping cream "frosting" (under the cupcakes blog) and tossed on some fresh blueberries and raspberries.

The "Shortcake" (same recipe as protein pancakes minus the protein)
- 1 Banana
- 1 egg
-2 heaping spoonfuls of almond butter
- couple tablespoons of coconut oil
---Melt Coconut Oil in Frying pan, spoon thorougly mixed batter to the pan and cook until brown on both sides.  Keep pancake size small or they get difficult to flip.

Whipped Cream
1/2 c - 1 cup of heavy whipping cream ( I used half a cup because I only needed enough whipped cream for four pancakes)
2 tsp honey

--Use hand held mixer until you get a thicker whip cream like texture, or wisk until you get the desired whipped cream like texture ( this could take up to 10 minutes---No I don't have a hand held mixer)

Add a couple of your favorite berries to the top and you  have a Paleo Friendly Berry Shortcake! Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Kale Pesto Chicken with Cauliflower Mash

To start off with, people must have been reading my heavy whipping cream post, because when I went to whole foods yesterday to pick up my favorite brand of cream they were all out!!  Also there was only 2 Jars left of my favorite Coconut Oil!  Glad everyone is enjoying my blog, I appreciate all the positive comments i've been getting in and outside of the gym about it.

I bought myself a gift yesterday, it was something i've been wanting for a while now and couldn't bring myself to buy it.  No not an iphone, not a mani/pedi, not the Tory Burch flats I want, not a great pair of new lulu lemon pants.  I bought myself a food processor !  My college friends would probably laugh in my face if I told them this was the present i've been wanting for a while now, 3 years ago my favorite gift was a 6 pack of Sam Summer Ale.  Alot has changed in the since I graduated from UMASS (although,  I would still love to be sitting on a beach with a 6 pack of Sam Summer.)
Back to the food..... So I am not a picky eater, at all, I will try anything once, and I usually like it.  There are just a few things that I just don't like no matter how good I know it is for me.  Kale is one of those things I just don't like.  I try and eat it once in a while because I know it is packed with nutrients but I feel like i'm forcing it down.  I saw this recipe for Kale Pesto on one of my favorite recipe sites Comfy Belly recipes .  I figured maybe if the Kale was in a pesto sauce and I put it on chicken I would be able to tolerate it better. I was right!  I will cut back on the garlic next time, garlic gives me instant heartburn, but the recipe will be good for you garlic lovers out there. I served the Kale Pesto Chicken with Cauliflower Mash.  I also got this Cauliflower Mash recipe from Comfy Belly recipes as well.  Of course I added a few of my own ingredients to both recipes.  You can check out the Comfy Belly Recipes here  and i'll post what I did below. 
WARNING: the picture below is yet another picture that looks kinda gross but it really is good!  If you are a pesto lover you know pesto looks pretty gross but still tastes yummy!

Kale Pesto:
-1 Medium Bunch Kale
-2 green onions
-1/2 cup olive oil - add more for a smoother texture- I used  mostly regular EVOO and some of the Oil from the jar of marinating sundried tomatoes.
-2 tbs Lemon
-2 cloves garlic ( I will use less next time, too much garlic for me = heartburn, but for you garlic LOVERS you can even add more)
**1/2 cup walnuts**
**1/4 cup sundried tomatoes ** You can get them already marinated in Oil and Garlic
*** 1 package baby portobella mushrooms***
-Sea salt for taste
the ingredients with *** are ingredients I added for my own  liking.  LOVE sundried tomatoes & mushrooms

Throw all ingredients EXCEPT mushrooms in the food processor and puree it all up.  I sauteed the mushrooms with a little bit of EVOO then added the pesto to it.  Since Pesto is really Oily, I grilled 4 chicken breasts(without any oil or marinade) then cut it up and added it to the pesto mushroom sauce.

Cauliflower Mash

About one head of Cauliflower ( I used two pre-cleaned/cut packages from whole foods)
2 tbs EVOO
1/4-1/2 cup warm water
3-4 tbs heavy whipping Cream- you can add more or less depending on the texture you want
sea salt for taste.

- Toss cauliflower in olive oil and add salt, put it on baking sheet and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.  Once out of oven put in food processor with water and cream.  You may want to use more or less cream or water depending on the texture you would like.  The recipe called for garlic, but as you noticed the pesto was garlicy enough for me. 

For those who can't stand Kale, this would be good with spinach and some basil as well.  I'm going to try that next time. Enjoy !

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Protein Pancakes for the Carb Restricted

Many paleo eaters consume little to no fruit.  But fruit is so good for you!! Yes, fruit is good for you and has important vitamins and nutrients, BUT it also contains lots of sugar.  A friend of mine at the gym told me, she was diagnosed with gestational diabetes from eating too much fruit when she was pregnant. SCARY! The sugar in fruit places a demand on your pancreas to produce insulin in response to elevated blood sugar levels, just like any other kind of sugar.  Different fruits have different glycemic indexes and affect your body differently.  Berries are a type of fruit that has the least amount of sugar and also is the most rich in anti-oxidants.  Bananas and grapes on the other hand have the highest amount of sugar.  So for those of you who store fat in their bellys like myself, Coach Jay or Coach Colin probably told you to restrict your intake of fruit.  So what was up with the banana in yesterdays protein pancake recipe??  I got that recipe from Marks Daily Apple and they would be a great post work out meal, also some jerks out there can eat all the fruit they want and be unaffected! So I got out of school early today and headed to my kitchen for a little experimenting for those who are less fortunate and can do without the extra carbs.  I have to pat myself on the back for this one because my protein pancakes today were awesome!!  They look, feel, and tastes just like real pancakes and they are PACKED with protein and good fats.-- Make sure you get to the bottom of the page to read what too look for when buying coconut flour and whey protein.
You will need:
1/4 cup Coconut flour
1 scoop whey protein
1/2 cup UNSWEETENED vanilla almond milk
1 egg
2 heaping spoonfuls of almond butter
Coconut oil for frying

Combine all ingredients and stir until you get a smooth batter.  Spoon batter into melted coconut oil and cook until brown on both sides.

Make sure you read the container to make sure your coconut flour is unbleached and unrefined!

There are only 3 ingredients in my whey protein: whey protein, natural vanilla, and stevia.  Notice it is free of soy, gluten, sugar, rice.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Protein Pancakes

Calling all meatheads! For those of you who are tired of eating eggs every, single, day for breakfast, switch it up a bit and try some protein pancakes!  One of my followers, Margaret, shared this recipe with me from Marks Daily Apple.  Only a few ingredients, quick, and easy to make, perfect for those who say they don't have time to make breakfast in the morning.  I just made + ate these in ten minutes ( probably because I ate them as they came out of the pan).  When I cook for myself only, I tend to eat standing up at the stove, probably not the best for digestion.  I tweaked the recipe just a tad, but I really enjoyed these "pancakes"!  The recipe called for 2 bananas, one egg, and one heaping spoonful of almond butter.  I used only one banana, one egg, and 2 "heaping spoonfuls" of almond butter and added a scoop of my vanilla whey protein.  No need for extra carbs for me after I had a serious cheat meal that included Margaritas(yumm) on Saturday night.  Needless to say, while we had a very good time, i'm paying for it today. 

****Someone had asked me about the grams of protein per serving:  depends on the type of protein powder and how much you consume, but with 26g of whey protein, 16 g protein in almond butter, and 7 g in the egg, the batter is just about 50g protein all together.

Protein Pancakes:
1 mashed banana
1 egg
2 "heaping spoonfuls" of almond butter
1 scoop vanilla whey protein
Coconut Oil for frying

Add about a table spoon of coconut oil to pan, let it melt, add batter to pan.  I made small pancakes because they were a little trickier to flip when they were larger.  This made about 9 small pancakes.  I ate 4 ( and felt pretty full!) and am bringing the rest to princess Colin to snack on while he is at the gym.  Enjoy!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Heavy Whipping Cream (make your own latte!)

When I started doing Paleo and I heard Heavy Whipping Cream was O.K. for the diet I was psyched. I didn't ask questions as long as I could put that delicious-ness in my coffee.  But now I know exactly why people include it in their diet.  Coach Colin gave me the run down on heavy whipping cream the other day.  Most people think heavy whipping cream is bad for you.  Heavy whipping cream is all fat and doesn't contain lactose or casein.  If I learned one thing during the digestion unit in physiology class its that anything that ends in "ose" is sugar. Sugar is delicious but we all know the negative effects it can have on our body.  But don't we need sugar for energy?? Unless you are a diabetic and you're body can't control its blood sugar on its own you don't need to take in sugar.  You're body does a fine job of breaking down the carbs you get from fruits and vegetables into glucose ,which is used for energy.  I'm sure you all know lactose is the sugar in dairy products, and Casein is the protein in dairy products.  Heavy whipping cream contains neither of these and is packed with fat which is why Paleo eaters prefer heavy whipping cream.  Increasing your fat ( good fat) in take will hinder your carb cravings and keep you feeling satiated longer.  If you want to read more about good fats, check out my benefits of coconut oil post.
This is the unhomogenized heavy whipping cream I get from whole foods.  Why do I prefer this kind?  If you have had unhomogenized cream you probably notice that it gets kind of chunky, and thick.  This doesn't mean it has gone bad, it is just what fat molecules do.  Homogenized products are smoother, have no chunks, and has no fat floating at the top.  But there is fat still in these products they are just broken down into smaller fat particles.  This is where the problem is.  Lets say your digestive tract is like a screen (window screen) and we poured unhomogenized milk on it and homogenized milk on it.  The homogenized milk and its tiny fat particles would seep through the tiny holes while the the thicker unhomogenized milk would stay on top.  Basically, the tiny homogenized fat particles get reabsorbed by your digestive tract and they are so small they are able to pass into your blood stream, and that is what increases cholesterol and can cause plaque build up (atherosclerosis) in your arteries.  Unhomogenized fat passes through the digestive tract and only necessary nutrients are absorbed from it. 

The other day I made my "cupcakes" with "frosting" for Jay and Jocelyn Leydon, the owners of crossfit milford.  Jay had told me he put the frosting(which is just heavy whipping cream and some agave nectar) in his coffee!  Not a bad idea Jay! So I decided to give it a whirl, and make my own "latte" this morning. 

Take about 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream, throw it in a small container with a lid, shake it up for about a minute or two, or you can beat it like an egg with a fork for a minute or two.  It gives you an awesome thicker, latte-like cream for your coffee. I didn't thickening as much as I would if I were making frosting.  No sweetner for me, so a little cinnamon on top! Add as much as you would like to your coffee, and you can refrigerate the rest and save it for tomorrow.  Yummm, saved me a trip down the post road to starbucks!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Jerseee Thursdee "Meatball" Muffins

Its friday, I know.  But as some of you know last night was the season finale of Jersey Shore.  The only thing more sad than naming my blog after Jersey Shore is the fact that Colin, myself, his brother Casey, and his girlfriend Lauren have been getting together for every episode since the first season.  I love to hate the show, and I also love to watch mindless garbage after studying and being in school all week, I'm sure some of you can relate.  When we first started getting together for "Jersee Thursdee" we would "Party" for each episode. Not the kind of "party" you are thinking of.  Our partying consisted of  Ben & Jerrys, basically one of everything from the candy aisle at  7-11, and a couple of grown men in tiny tank-tops.  This was when I started trying to stick with paleo, which lasted Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday then I completely cancelled everything out Thursday - Sunday, and felt like complete CRAP when I tried to worked out.  So why am I telling you this and why am I calling them meatball muffins??  Well because basically ever since then we associate the jersey shore with eating treats, so I started trying to bring treats that weren't so bad, such as paleo cookies, coconut macaroons,etc.  Now its expected that I come bearing treats when I walk through my boyfriends door on a Thursday night.  So when I tried to take a picture(with my phone) of these banana nut muffins for the blog, they looked more like meatballs then muffins, and since my girl snooks calls herself a little meatball, I decided to name them Meatball Muffins.  I know yesterday I said, "the better it looks the better it tastes". This is not the case for these muffins, I like these  better than the coconut almond muffins (although they are very similar recipes) these taste much better than they look!

Colin & May-z enjoying JerseeThursdee ( at least I could get Mayz to take her eyes off the train wreck for a second)

Meatball Muffins ( aka dark chocolate chip banana nut muffins)
2 large ripe Smananas (smashed bananas)
1/4 c + 2 tbsp Coconut Oil ( random I know, I added a little extra because the batter was dry-- measure by packing down in measuring cup then melt)
1/2 c almond flour
1/2 c flax seed meal
1/4 cup coconut flour
2 tbs heavy whipping cream
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
 2 tsp honey
1 tsp cinammon
1tsp baking powder
1tsp celtic sea salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
6 oz dark chocolate chips (optional)
***The reason for coconut flour, almond flour, and flax seed meal was because this was an experimental project, I didn't like the consistency with just coconut flour and flax seed.  So I was making it up as I went along**
- In one bowl, mash bananas, add wet ingredients including melted coconut oil.  Mix then add to all dry ingredients.  Spoon batter into a coconut oil sprayed mini muffin pan.  Bake @ 350 for about 20 mins.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake

Mrs. Lee Lipsitz gave me the idea for this recipe.  She told me about a squash egg bake she makes with onion and shredded up squash.  Due to the excessive pile of homework I had, I wanted to spend as little time as possible in the kitchen last night, so I bought a spaghetti squash to bake, that way the squash is already all shredded for you!  I figure, if I start eating like Lee Lipsitz, maybe I'll be able to lift weights like Lee Lipsitz. Eat your protein kids, and one day you too, may be able to dead lift well over 300 pounds like Lee, mother of two by the way, and maybe you will have the energy to get to the gym at 530 am and make it back for a PM workout, like Lee does. 

Here's the Egg Bake

What you will need:
12 eggs ( i used 6 whole 6 whites, thats just how I prefer it, but you can use 12 whole eggs if you'd like.
 Spaghetti squash-- I used 1/2 of a squash, next time I will use more for a thicker, more filling egg bake. ( bake for about 45 minutes first or until the squash comes out easily by scraping it with a fork.)
4-5 chopped scallions ( regular onion works too, I know it is silly, but the green looks prettier in the dish, the better it looks the better it tastes to me.
about 3 tablespoons of heavy whipping cream.
coconut oil to spray the baking dish.

combine eggs, whipping cream, and squash in a bowl.  Pour into coconut oil sprayed baking dish, sprinkle on the scallions evenly. Add some celtic sea salt for taste.
Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until cooked all the way through. 

**I would use this as a side dish, I made this only for dinner last night, and Colin and I basically polished it off. But it was yummy! I also think this would be good with regular squash, carrots, or zucchini.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spaghetti Squash Pancakes

Basically, I've always been a carb-aholic.  When I was in elementary school, whenever we went out to dinner, I would order french fries and a baked potato.  SERIOUSLY!  And my parents let me! Probably just to shut up me, I was quite the brat as a kid.  No wonder I was a chubster when I was little.  I ate all the worst things, pasta, potatos, muffins, breads, and cheese sticks by the dozen!  Who doesn't love potatoes though. Baked potatoes, french fries, and potato pancakes, are a few of my favorites.  But, unless its a sweet potato, they are a no-go in the paleo diet.  So I made the next best thing Spaghetti squash pancakes! They are actually just as good! I bought a rotisserie chicken and made these as a side dish. Semi-home made meal.
The hardest part of this recipe is cutting that spaghetti squash in half!  But once you cut it in half and clean the seeds out bake it for about 45 mins or until the squash comes out easily when you run a fork through it.  This picture is from my phone so it is kinda crappy, but it should look like the squash I have in the bowl.
You will need:
2 cups cooked spaghetti squash (save the extra squash and pour some marinara and meatballs on it and have spaghetti and meatballs for dinner the next night)
•1 cup minced onion
•1/4 cup almond flour
•1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
•4 large eggs
•Oil for the pan- I did use Olive Oil for these.  Next time I make them I'm going to try coconut oil, but I wouldn't tell you to try something I haven't yet tested out.

Take about a 1/4 of a cup of the mixture (or however much you want for desired size of pancake) and form into pancake and fry until brown on both sides.
- If your having a "cheat" meal these are delicious with sour cream, but otherwise, organic sugar-free apple sauce is really good on them too.  Enjoy.

Quality Over Quantity

The biggest debate with eating clean is the cost of organic products.  People are probably thinking, this Clean Eats chick must be rackin in some serious dough to be cooking/baking with all those expensive ingredients.  WRONG. I'm putting myself through Nursing school right now, I work part time, and I have about $20,000 in loans from my undergraduate degree. YIKES. How do I afford to even eat? Well, I work part time, which basically gives me enough to cover my gym membership, the bills that I have, and food. I cut out my mani/pedis sadly, I rarely go out with my friends anymore (thanks for still liking me even though i'm lame), no vacations, and the only clothes I have bought in the past months are sports bras, workout pants, and scrubs. I also put my credit card to good use, with the hopes I will get a great job as soon as I graduate(in 12 weeks,thank god) and be able to pay it off.  Sometimes I wonder who I think I am spending so much money on food and ingredients.  But then I realize, Oh, because this is what I put in my body.  The food you eat now, will effect you for the rest of your life.  I am in my Cardiac rotation in school right now, today we covered blood pressure.  One of the main reasons people live with uncontrolled blood pressure is non-compliance with medications.  Why? Because they are EXPENSIVE. Even with insurance some combination anti-hypertensive medications can cost up to $50 dollars a month. That is just for the medication, don't forget the doctors visits, any hospitalizations, stress testing, etc.  What about diabetes? The meds alone can cost up to $200/ month depending on the type and how many different drugs you are taking. That doesn't include the glucose meter, lancets (finger pricks), or glucose test strips. Plus medical costs for all of the complications that go along with diabetes and hypertension.  Type II diabetes and hypertension can both be prevented and treated with lifestyle change such as diet and exercise.  I choose to invest my money in my health. What good is money if your not healthy anyway?   So for all those people who tell me i'm crazy for spending the little money that I have right now on a gym membership and organic, gluten free ingredients, I would just have to say I don't care what you think!  Maybe you can get 9 items off the dollar menu at Wendy's for what I spend on one jar of coconut oil, but I can walk up stairs without getting out of breath, I can carry 8 grocery bags into my house at once, I wake up with energy that lasts throughout the day, and I can fit back into my jeans from freshman year of college!
So I will take this:
over this:


Monday, March 21, 2011

Hot Finds!

These three items are my latest finds:
1.) Rao's marinara- the boss' wife aka Jocelyn told me about this sauce today, and since I was on my way to one of the three stores I go to regularly(trader joes, whole foods, stop and shop), I bought it.  When Jocelyn said she only likes homemade sauce (none from the jar), but she absolutley loved this one, I was sold.  I poured it over my meatballs and broccoli that I had for dinner tonight, and it was amazing!  Thanks for the hot find!
2.) I'm not sure if you can read the label of the dark chocolate, but its a Trader Joe's 73% dark chocolate that I got today.  Gina asked me yesterday about the kind of chocolate I used in my cookies/cupcakes.  I had used just regular dark chocolate chips, because I didn't find any 73% at the store I was at, and didn't feel like going further down the post road.  So for your chocolate purchases I would suggest trader joes ( cheaper and more options than whole foods)
3.) I saved the best Hot Find for last, my new favorite Lara Bar, Coconut Cream Pie !   I know most of you Paleo eaters have been eating Lara bars for a while now.  I ate them all the time last year, but like everything else I eat regularly, I got sooo sick of them and haven't really eaten them in a few months.  As a regular down the "bars" aisle at whole foods, I passed the Lara bars and a new colored white box jumped right out at me ! Yes, I know its sad when you recognize an out of the ordinary colored lara bar box. Since we all know I have a sick obsession with coconut I had to buy a few of them to try.  They are delicious, they taste like a coconut macaroon! I have only found them at whole foods thus far, i'm anxiously waiting for trader joes or stop and shop to get them ( they will probably be much cheaper).These are the only ingredients in the Coconut Cream Pie Lara Bar:
Side Note: While these are delicious and contain all natural ingredients, they are all carbs + fat, so don't go eating 5 in one day.  Everything in moderation....Easier said than done, I know.

Home made Paleo friendly not-so- Italian Wedding Soup

I'm only about 1/4 italian, little bit of irish little bit of english, little bit of german, etc. I'm pretty much a mutt.  But my belly is 100% italian.  I'll never ever get sick of Italian food.  Why does it have to be so good??  Anyway, Italian Wedding soup is one of my favorites of all time.  I couldn't find Italian wedding soup without pasta anywhere, so I just made it myself.  This recipe left me with a ton of left over soup because I usually cook for only me.  But it was perfect to have with a salad for lunch for a few days, I also gave some away, to get other opinions, just because I like my cooking doesn't mean other people will.

FYI- I always wanted to know what was up with the name of this soup.  I always figured italian people served it at weddings for some reason.  But it really got its name because us stupid Americans misinterpreted the name of the soup. Minestra Maritata ("Married Soup") is what italians called it because meat and greens go well together.  That somehow ended up getting translated into "Italian Wedding Soup".

With that being said, there is your food for thought and food for belly for the day.  Here's my recipe:

‎2 containers-low sodium chicken broth
1 bag spinach
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced onion
*** Trader Joes has containers of carrots, onions, and celery, pre-diced with about a cup of each veggie.  That is what I used.
2 gloves garlic
3ish tablespoons olive oil (enough to sautee veggies)
celtic sea salt for taste- use as much or little as you would like
*** sautee veggies(EXCEPT spinach) about 8 mins add chicken broth bring this all to a boil then add the spinach and UNCOOKED mini meatballs.

The meat-a-balls: ( this takes part takes foreverrr- put on your favorite pandora station while rolling the balls)
pound (ish - i didnt end up using all the meat) ground turkey
3 sweet italian sausage links
1 egg
1/2 c almond flour
1/2 c flax seed meal
Dash of garlic powder
**optional- any seasoning you like
-- I started off making really tiny meatballs, then after about 10 minutes, they got progressively bigger.  Still yummy though.

let it simmer until the veggies are soft and meatballs are cooked all the way through. YUM.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Coconut Oil Benefits

I am realizing that people are probably wondering why the heck I choose to use the ingredients that I do.  Especially what is up with the coconut oil in everything!!??  Well, after my boyfriend told me to try it out, I did some research.  There are numerous benefits of using coconut oil over other oils...
1.) Heart Health-  Extra virgin coconut oil contains about 50% lauric acid, which helps in preventing various heart problems including high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. It helps prevent atherosclerosis (clogging of arteries), the saturated fats in coconut oil are not harmful, like the saturated fats in vegetable oil.  It also increases high- density lipoproteins (good cholesterol), and does not increase Low-Density Lipoproteins (bad cholesterol).
2.) Weight Loss- C.O. has short and medium chain fatty acids that are useful in losing weight.  It also improves thyroid (controls metabolism) function therefore increases metabolism.
3.) Digestion- this one is important to me since i've had stomach problems since middle school.  Since I have been eating coconut oil regularly, I have had MUCH fewer flare ups.  Coconut oil aids in digestion and absorption. The saturated fats in coconut oil have anti-microbial effects, so it works against bacteria that disrupts the normal flora of your digestive tract.
4.) Immunity- It has also been found that C.O. has anti-microbial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties.  This allows your body to fight off infections and viruses more efficiently.
5.) Kidneys-  Can be useful in preventing kidney and gall bladder disease, and also useful in preventing and disolving kidney stones.
6.) Bone + Teeth- C.O. facilitates the absorption of essential minerals such as Calcium and Magnesium, leading to stronger healthier bones and teeth.
7.) Performance- C.O. is thought to improve athletic performance do to the fact that the fats it contains are easily converted to energy. It is thought to increase energy and endurance.
8.) Others- it is also thought to decrease premature aging and degenerative joint disease because of its high antioxidant content, useful in skin care, helps relieve stress, and is an excellent natural source of nutrition for your hair.  Not only can you eat coconut oil, but you can rub it on your skin, and put it in your hair!

Celtic Sea Salt

My friend Gina just asked "What's the Deal with Celtic Sea Salt?" I was responding to the question and thought other people also may want to hear the response, so thanks for the blog idea G !. Celtic sea salt is not processed like regular table salt, has no additives or chemicals like most table salts do, and it also has way more minerals. While it still functions the same as other salts in terms of the need for it for  normal physiological function.  I also love it because its really grainy and I like the texture on veggies. :)-- my explanation
-I also just asked Colin his input because he is the one who encouraged me to use it, he said "Regular refined salt has anti-caking agents which are aluminum (can cause heavy metal toxicity) also has dextrose (sugar), sodium silico aluminate (associated with kidney problems and malabsorption), sodium acetate (associated with elevated blood pressure, kidney disturbance, and water rentention).  It also has more sodium chloride which hangs out in your body and causes swelling and kidney problems"  --- Yikess!! Adios "land salt", next time you eat a salty meal and feel crazy bloated, now you know why.
I hope that answers your question G ! 

Saturday, March 19, 2011


If you read my previous post for Banana Coconut Dark Chocolate Chip Almond Cookies, this recipe will sound firmilar.  When I made those cookies they had a muffin-y feel too them, so for Colin's brother and his brother's girlfriends birthday this weekend, I made Banana Coconut Dark Chocolate Chip Cupcakes, I changed the recipe up a bit though I subbed Flax seed meal and coconut flour for the almond meal and added eggs for a more cupcakey texture!  Yes, I even made frosting! -- This recipe isn't exactly paleo, but I feel better eating one of these then any of the 60 (duncan hines-non-paleo-unclean) cupcakes I had to mass produce for my sister-in-law's babyshower this weekend.  It would have cost me an arm and a leg to make that many Gluten-free cupcakes. The price we pay for the Paleo Diet will be a blog topic next week.  Anyway here are a few pics of my gluten free cupcakes and my gluten/sugar rich "it's a girl" cupcakes.

They Can be Muffins

Or, Cupcakes!
NOT Paleo...But pretty :)
Recipe for the Cupcake/Muffins
2 bananas(mashed) aka shmananas
1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
2/3 cup flaxseed meal

1/4 c coconut flour
2 eggs
1/3 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp celtic sea salt
1 tsp baking powder
6 oz dark chocolate chips

***Mix all dry ingredients, then add mashed banana, melted coconut oil, and eggs. Bake in coconut oil sprayed cupcake pan,bake for 15mins @350
** this would make 8-10 regular sized cupcakes, this was the first time I made this recipe and I ended up with 12 mini cupcakes and 4 big cupcakes.-- I think mini sized things are the cutest, and therefore they taste better to me.

For the Frosting:
- about 1 1/2-2 cups heavy whipping cream(oops forgot to measure again! This doesn't have to be exact anyway you just want enough to frost all your cupcakes)--I got this organic grassfed unhomogenized heavy cream at whole foods.
-2 tbs agave - add more or less depending on how sweet you want it( I don't like to use agave frequently, but frosting needs to be sweet :)
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-2 tbs coconut flour
- Wisk/electric mixer the crap out of the mixture until you get a thick creamy frosting-like texture. This may take up to ten minutes if you are mixing by hand to get desired texture.
***Keep Frosting refrigerated until right before serving and don't frost cupcakes while they are warm still.  It will be a melty mess.***
***Optional- for decoration I put the tiniest pinch of regular sweetened coconut on the tip of the frosting(it looks prettier then the unsweetened coconut)-- I know, tons of sugar in regular coconut, but it was a birthday celebration so we lived a little.**

Banana Coconut Dark Chocolate Chip Almond Cookies

Sometimes you just need a little something sweet, but if you're anything like me, the ever so delicious girlscout cookies will give you a carb hang over that may last for days.  Side note: have you read the ingredients on a box of girl scout cookies lately? Unfortunately I had a box in my possession recently because my mom knows how much I love Somoa's.  These things have at least 50 ingredients, half of which I have never even heard of and sound more like chemicals then an ingredient in a cookie.  All those ingredients for one tiny cookie?? Banana coconut dark chocolate chip cookies have simple ingredients that you can pronounce.  Just because they have good ingredients, there is still sugar in the chocolate and bananas, so unless you are my boyfriend who can eat 10 of these in one sitting and will never gain an ounce, then I don't reccommend eating them all to your face at once. :)

‎3 bananas (mashed)
1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
2/3 cup almond meal
1/3 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp celtic sea salt
1 tsp baking powder
6 oz dark chocolate chips
recipe called for 2 cups of thanks to that, I added 1/2 c chopped almonds and some extra shredded coconut
**Mix all dry ingredients, then add mashed bananas and melted coconut oil to mixture.  I kinda made these cookies like meatballs and rolled them up and just plopped them on a Coconut Oil sprayed cookie sheet.
bake for 15mins @350.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Strong is the New Black

So, this is mostly a crossfit related post, tomorrow is the first workout of sectionals for the crossfit games.  Not that I don't appreciate my male crossfit friends, but I would like to give a big shout out to all my strong female crossfit buddies.  If anyone thinks being a strong girl/woman makes you "manly" then just check out the pictures below.  Here are some of the most feminine, strong, healthy, women I know. Strong is in, lanky and scrawny is totally 90's. Duh.
These are just some of the pictures I could find, there are many others competing tomorrow who are just as strong as these ladies:





Tina G.

"Breaded" Gluten-free Chicken Parm

Since my love for italian food will never subside, and you can't walk into an italian restaraunt and ask for bread crumb free chicken cutlets I decided to figure out a way to have the next best thing.  If you haven't found out already I L-O-V-E coconut, I figure if you can dip shrimp in coconut, why not chicken??  My boyfriend/crossfit trainer gave me approval of all my ingredients I used (which he doesn't always- but he knows way more than me so I listen) and he really enjoyed them ( or at least he said he did).

What you need:
-thin sliced chicken breasts
-1/2 c unsweetened coconut
-1/2 cup flax seed meal
** you might need more depending how much you are making- measurements don't have to be exact ( well thats what I always say)
-1 egg
- Coconut oil
-Celtic sea salt for flavor
- your favorite gluten free marinara
-raw cows milk parm cheese ( not so paleo-but chicken parm with no parm?? No thanks)

** Heat 2-3 table spoons of coconut oil in frying pan, have your egg beated in one dish and "breading" on a plate, dip chicken breasts in egg, bread evenly on both sides, toss in the frying pan.  When cooked all the way through, throw on some marinara, sprinkle a little parm cheese, and enjoy!

Left overs for breakfast

While most 25 year olds are having "Kegs and Eggs" for breakfast on St.Patty's day, I am having steak and eggs. Not as fun, but I signed up last minute to compete at the crossfit sectionals tomorrow, so no kegs for me . I had some left over steak from Fajitas last night, so add a few eggs, some coconut oil, and some hot sauce and there you have a paleo breakfast.
Best find ever, coconut oil spray!! Tip: run tip under hot water after each use, the coconut oil hardens and makes the spray get clogged up.  I thought I got ripped off the second time I went to use it and nothing came out.
-spray your skillet with coconut oil
-add some eggs ( I used 2)
- toss in your left overs
- add some hot sauce
- enjoy with cup of coffee with a dash of heavy whipping cream ( best part of breakfast) and a handful of some fresh raspberries.

1st Post- "Fajitas"

Well, I never thought I would be making a recipe blog. I've always loved to cook, but my best recipes were anything with pasta & cheese.  As much as I LOVE italian food, I hate how it makes me feel. It took me a long time to figure out why I felt like I was going into a coma after a nice plate of lasagna.  After joining Crossfit, I learned alot about nutrition and  a lot about my body and how it responds to certain foods ( specifically carbs). I know that I can't eat anything with sugar in the middle of the day, not even fruit, or I will likely be a walking zombie and get an almost instant muffin top.  My best friend Stacy on the other hand, can eat icecream, pasta, candy, and drink soda throughout the whole day and feel like a million bucks, not get a muffin top, and sleep like a baby.  All I have to say about that is a.) unfair b.) very few people have bodies like that! I get most of my nutrition tips from my crossfit trainer/nutritionist/boyfriend/food taster, he is really smart when it comes to nutrition, and has a whole book shelf full of Paleo eating books. ( I let him do all the reading then I ask questions). So anyway, for all of my paleo friends/ clean eaters, here I will be posting my own recipes, great recipe finds, and new ingredient finds.

I will make my first post our dinner from last night
"Fajitas" and Guac
I don't exactly have a recipe for this ( I never measure anything, I should probably start if i'm going to be blogging recipes)
For the Guac
2 avacados (mashed)
handful of chopped cherry tomatos
about a 1/2 cup red onion ( im not into onion-y things) I just put it in for the color
Pinch celtic Sea Salt
Dash of garlic powder
Dash Cayenne pepper
1/2 lime squeezed
Pre-sliced sirloin strip ( they come in packages already cut and some come with pre-cut veggies, this is easier if your're short on time but it kinda grosses me out that the meat juice is marinating the veggies)
1/2 red pepper
1/2 green pepper
1/2 yellow pepper
** whatever veggies you want, I just like all the colors.
I cook the veggies separate in coconut oil then add it to the meat after it has cooked.

So of course, no tortillas just add a dollop of guacamole to your protein and you're good to go!