Puttin On the Foil

Yes, that is a Slapshot reference.  Ice hockey and grilling.  Both are near and dear to my heart.  Speaking of grilling, I have been a grillin’ fool lately.  I have tried to get creative with my foil packet grilling.  I thought I could just compile a list of a few of my more recent favorites.

Pork
Pork chops, butter, garlic, s&p

Chicken
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I cut up a few chicken breasts, then added garlic, s&p, Italian seasoning

Seafood
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Tilapia, lemon (or lime) slices, butter, dill, s&p

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sea scallops, butter, s&p

Vegetables
Brussels sprouts: sprouts, garlic, onion, s&p
Sweet potatoes 1: sweet potatoes (sliced), butter, real maple syrup
Sweet potatoes 2: sweet potatoes (chopped), onion, garlic, butter, s&p.  You can also add veggies like asparagus, carrots, and mushrooms.

These are just a couple of examples of my most recent foil packets.  Typically I double foil wrap each packet, otherwise it will leak.  right now, I’m definitely into grilling new things.  Next on the list: beets, butternut squash, and cauliflower.  I figure, if you can roast it, you can grill it.  I also want to try putting beef stew meat into a packet as well.  The possibilities are endless!

Happy Grilling!

-Lindsay

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Mashed Sweet Potatoes

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One of the dishes that I agreed to make for Thanksgiving Dinner at work was sweet potatoes.  Personally, I feel like T-Day dinner is salt salt salt salt salt.  I wanted to find a recipe that had a hint of sweet.  Sweet sweet potatoes it is.

Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients
4-6 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ chunks
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (or coconut milk)
1 heaping tablespoon coconut oil
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
Salt and pepper to taste
(Scale this recipe for the amount of people being served, I figured 1 sweet potato per person)

Instructions
1. Peel and cut sweet potatoes, and place in a large soup pot filled with water.
2. Bring water to boil, and boil sweet potatoes until soft, about 20 minutes.
3. Drain sweet potatoes and place in a large bowl, or kitchen aid mixer.
4. With kitchen aid mixer, or hand mixer, mash sweet potatoes on low to keep from getting lumpy and “glue-like”.
5. Continue to mash while adding coconut oil, almond milk, and maple syrup.
6. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve.

Simple.  Crazy simple.  A few changes.  I used heavy whip instead of almond milk.  Also, my hand mixer recently took a crap and the station that I was at did not have a hand mixer.  Blender it is.  May I recommend a hand mixer or Kitchenaid mixer…works a little slicker.  Lastly, I opted not to sprinkle with s&p.

These sweet potatoes are darn tasty.  The clan at the station loved them as well.  Perfectly and subtly sweet.  A great way to enjoy a guilt-free sweet potato dish.

Happy Eating!

Recipe HERE.

 

Sweet Potato Chili Round 2

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Sweet potato chili.  I’ve made sweet potato chili before (previous post HERE).  It was such a hit at work that I decided to try another recipe, hence the Round 2.  Some ingredients are similar…some are different.  With a name like Paleo On a Budget, of course I had to try it.  Here’s the info.

Ingredients
1 medium Sweet Potato {diced into bite sized pieces}
1lb ground pork
6oz Frozen Sausage {or whatever sausage you have on hand}
1 Big can crushed tomatoes
 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
1/3 Big Bag Frozen Green Beans
Large Onion, Diced {I did a big dice}
3 Carrots, Peeled + Diced
Seasoning: 3 Tbsp Cumin, 5 Tbsp Chili Powder, 2 Tbsp Dried Basil & Oregano, 1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning, 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder + Red Pepper Flakes
4 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
Salt + Pepper
KerryGold Butter

Instructions
1. In a big pot get some butter all melted. Toss in your onions and carrots, let them start to cook and soften.
2. While that’s going on dice up your sweet potato {I kept the skin on} and toss that in. Same with the sausages.
3. Once those are all happy together you can add in your pork. Then all of your spices, Apple Cider Vinegar, and Salt + Pepper go in. Stir it all together {you want everything coated in the spices and herbs}.
4. Then… Then… add in your tomato products and then your frozen green beans {if they’re the whole green beans try to snap them in half as you put them in so they’re more bite sized}.
5. One more big Stir, cover… put it on low.. forget about it for a few hours.
6. Boom, it’s done…. I serve mine w/ Homemade mayo. It’s just wicked yummy that way. You could also drizzle some EVOO on it for an additional boost of fat!

Again, I chose to make a slow cooker version of this.  Not sure if you’ve noticed, but I’m a fan of the slow cooker.  Big fan.  Here’s how I made this recipe.
1.I melted the butter in a big pot. 
2. In the meantime, I chopped carrots and onion then threw that into the melty butter pot.  (If you haven’t tried Kerrygold butter yet, you are missing out.  By far THE BEST butter I have ever tasted)
3. While the vegetables were cooking, I chopped up the sweet potato, leaving the skin on, and set aside for a few hours. 
4. Once the vegetables started to soften, I added the meat.  Really, just add whatever you have on hand.  I chose to add 1# of pork and 1/2# of beef.  Seemed to do the trick. 
5. Time for the spices
6. Next comes the vinegar.  I cooked this at work and accidentally left the apple cider vinegar at home on the counter.  Regular white vinegar seemed to work just fine.
7. While everything simmered and flavors infused in the pot, I prepared my slow cooker.  I ALWAYS use a slow cooker bag.  The fewer the dishes, the better.  I also added my tomatoes to the slow cooker at this time.
8. Next, I added the meaty vegetable mixture to the slow cooker. 
9. I did use the frozen green beans.  Legumes are not Paleo and I typically do not eat them, but for the sake of the recipe, I chose to add them.  I was intrigued.
10.  I let the whole lot cook on low for about 8 hours or so.  I added the sweet potatoes to the chili about 1 hour prior to eating.  This way they keep their firmness a bit better and don’t just become soggy clumps.

That’s it.  I typically serve my chili with a combination of any of these delicious ingredients: sweet potato chips, a little sour cream, a little cheese, avocado, tomatoes, scallions.

I really enjoyed this recipe.  The vinegar adds a fun acidic element to the chili.  I also loved the fact that the carrots and onions were cooked in butter beforehand.  Cooking the buttery vegetable, meat, spices, and vinegar combo worked really well.  I think it gave the dish a more intense flavor.  Richer. 

Next time, I would probably leave out the green beans.  They weren’t bad.  If green beans are a part of your diet, leave them in.  They definitely add a bit of texture to the chili.  Since I would leave out green beans, I would probably add an additional sweet potato for next time.  I would probably add a few more carrots as well for a little more Vitamin A.  I’m also curious if apple cider vinegar would change the flavor any.  As far as the meat, the pork/beef combo worked well.  I do like chili with a bit of kick, so for next time, I’m tempted to try a Graziano or Andouille sausage to give it a bit more pop.

Overall, this was pretty tasty.  I think the best part has been eating the leftovers.  Days 2-4 have been delicious.  I also stuck a container of leftovers in the freezer.  This will come in handy on one of those cold winter days to come.

I hope that you enjoy this chili as much as I do.  May it warm your soul as well as your tummy.

Happy Eating!

Recipe HERE.

No-Churn Two Ingredient Pumpkin Ice Cream

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I don’t have an ice cream maker, so I was excited to see that you could make this recipe without it. PLUS, only 2 ingredients and 3 easy steps.

Ingredients
4 large or 6 small very ripe bananas, frozen ( I always have a bunch of bananas in the freezer for smoothies and whatnot. When the bananas on the counter start getting brown/lots of black spots, I peel them, wrap them in plastic wrap, then freeze them. So much easier. Just a little helpful tip.)

1/2 cup fresh or canned pumpkin puree (if you used canned, check labels. You want the one with pumpkin as the only ingredient)

Optional: raw honey, pure maple syrup, cinnamon, or chocolate chips

Instructions
1. Blend the frozen bananas and pumpkin together in a high speed blender or food processor until creamy. The bananas must be pre-frozen even if you are going to freeze the ice cream after blending. 2. Taste and add some sweetener, like maple syrup, if desired. Cinnamon and chocolate chips can also be blended in, yum!
3. Serve immediately for soft serve texture or freeze for at least 4 hours for a firmer ice cream. If ice cream is in the freezer for a while, let it soften for about 5 minutes at room temperature before serving.

I’m a big fan of the banana ice cream (freeze bananas then blend them). This is really the same thing, you just add a little pumpkin. I also added some real maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice as well. Perfectly sweet. Great way to end the day. Just fruit. Delicious and nutritious. Brilliant.

Happy eating!

Recipe HERE.

Baked Sweet Potato Slices

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This recipe was floating around the Internets today using white potatoes. I wanted to give it a cleaner spin by using sweet potatoes.

Ingredients
Sweet potatoes
Olive oil
S&P
Butter

Directions
1. Rinse and peel sweet potatoes
2. Slice almost all the way through
3. Drizzle with some olive oil
4. Sprinkle with s&p
5. Top with just a little butter, I chose Kerrygold unsalted butter
6. Bake at 425° for 40 minutes.

I planned to make a bacon wrapped pork loin and garlicky asparagus, thought this might be a tasty addition to add to my plate. The sweet potatoes added just the prefect amount of sweeteness and the right amount of crunch to my dinner.

Simple & delicious. AND you can cook multiple potatoes at once. Perfect for an evening meal and then my lunchbox for work the next day. This will be making an appearance in the not too distant future.

Check out these crispy baked sweet potatoes this week. Try them with a little butter, real maple syrup, and cinnamon. How about some almond butter. What about a Sprinkle of Italian or pizza seasoning and perhaps a little beef. The possibilities are endless.

Happy eating!

Crispy Sweet Potato Rounds

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The other night, my medic partner had the idea to slice up a sweet potato and cook it in some butter, along with some asparagus. We seasoned the veggies with salt, pepper, and a little seasoning salt.

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Pretty simple. Pretty tasty. The nice thing about the butter is the flavor. Sweet potatoes and butter are delicious friends. Also, the sweet potatoes get ever so slightly crispy the longer you cook them.

Another fun thing about sweet potatoes is that they can be sweet or savory. You commonly see sweet potatoes with marshmallows and/or brown sugar. Not so clean. My favorite way to eat sweet sweet potatoes is with a little butter and a little real maple syrup. Delicious for breakfast. My favorite way to enjoy savory sweet potatoes is with butter, a little salt, and a little pepper. The perfect side.

I love the flavor of sweet potatoes. I don’t like to weigh it down with processed garbage. Food tastes so much better when you don’t consume piles of processed food and a bunch of sugar. Keep it clean and simple. It’s a delicious way to live.

Just make sure to enjoy sweet potatoes sparingly. They’re full of all sorts of vitamins and minerals, but they’re also called sweet potatoes for a reason. Be mindful of those sneaky sugars.

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Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Bars

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I know that I make A LOT of Paleo desserts, but I’m also good at sharing with husband, friends, coworkers. Keep in mind that sweets should be consumed sparingly.

I thought this one looked delicious. Dulce de Leche is essentially “milk candy” which in its simplest way can be made by boiling a can of sweetened condensed milk, becoming caramel. The author of this one found a recipe for Paleo-free Dulce de Leche cheesecake bars on Smitten Kitten’s site and revamped the recipe to be Paleo.  Before I started eating clean, I LOVED Smitten Kitten’s site.  I was pleasantly surprised to find a Paleo version of one of her recipes.   

This recipe is for dulce de leche cheesecake bars. You make Paleo graham cracker crust, then Paleo caramel, then Paleo cheesecake, then chocolate ganache for the top.  This takes time.  Mixing, baking, cooling, mixing, pouring, cooling…..

 

 

IMAG2582Graham cracker crust:
almond flour
coconut flour
salt
baking soda
baking powder
cinnamon
honey
egg
vanilla

Dulce de Leche sauce:
coconut milk
honey
vanilla

 
Cheesecake:
cashews
coconut oil
honey
lemon juice
coconut milk
vanilla
salt

 
Chocolate Ganache:
dark chocolate
coconut milk

 

IMAG2588You mix the graham cracker ingredients, bake, then cool.  This is pretty delicious.  It smells wonderful.  While the graham cracker crust is cooling (or even while it is baking), mix the ingredients for the Dulce de Leche sauce in a pan.  Boil until it reduces to half and becomes golden and syrupy. Allow this to cool until it becomes thick and creamy.  Pour over the graham cracker crust then put back into the fridge/freezer.  Next, the cheesecake.  Apparantly, cashews are how vegans make cheesecake.  With this recipe, add everything into the food processor and mix until it becomes thick and creamy.  I was intrigued by how this would taste, and was pleasantly surprised at how delicious this was.  Once this is mixed, pour the cheesecake over your graham cracker/dulce de leche bars.  Back into the fridge/freezer it goes.  Finally, mix the last 2 ingredients.  Once the chocolate is melted, pour over the top of the bars. The hardest part is allowing the bars to cool for a few hours.  Trust me, this is important if you want it to come out in bar form.  On the flip side, the best part is licking the spoon for each layer. 

I really enjoyed the flavor layers of this dessert.  The graham cracker, the sweetness of the dulce de leche, the complexity of the cheesecake, the chocolate.  It’s fun.  I hope you enjoy this one.

Recipe HERE.

Sweet Potato Chai Muffins

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These muffins are quite delicious. Subtly sweet.

Sweet potato
Banana
Eggs
Chai tea bags
Pecans
Flax seed meal
Coconut oil
Coconut nectar
Vanilla extract
Baking powder
Baking soda
Cinnamon
Pinch of salt
Coconut Crystals

I didn’t have any flax seed meal, so I just ground some flax seeds. Also, I used honey in place of coconut nectar. I assumed that coconut sugar is the same as coconut crystals.

I baked these for about 25 minutes and that seemed sufficient. I recommend using muffin tin liners as the muffins are somewhat gooey. This recipe made 12 muffins.

Recipe HERE.

Nachos

nachosLast night, I was jonesin’ for something kinda Paleo, kinda not. Then I remembered seeing a nachos recipe on the Health-Bent website.

Bottom layer was sweet potato and beet chips. Next, beef/sausage mixture. Then, sauteed green… peppers, onions, and mushrooms. Finally, I added a sprinkle of cheese which was completely unnecessary but seemed like an ok idea. The recipe includes recipes for homemade guacamole as well as salsa to put on top of the nachos. Hoping to make the salsa one of these days.

As the recipe says, it’s more of a cheat than a paleo snack, but if you’re looking for something that’s corn-free, grain-free, check it out. A healthy cheat perhaps?

Recipe HERE.

Pizza Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

IMAG2140If you loved the butternut squash lasagna, you’ll dig this one too.  I am always drawn to the recipes that make me think huh…that’s an interesting combination.

The rules are simple.  Bake a sweet potato. Add some sauce.  Add some meat.  Add some vegetables.  Bake it again.  Grab a fork.  Eat it up.

As mentioned in the recipe, oven roasted sweet potatoes are best.  Sweeter flavor.  I agree with that.  However, to expidite the cooking process, I used a baked potato bag for the microwave.  Genius.  I love that thing.

Oftentimes I make my own meat and tomato sauce, but this time I decided to “cheat” and use store bought.  I found some really good pizza sauce, no sugar added, just tomatoes and spices.  As far as toppings, I browned a combination of beef/sausage. For veggies, I sauteed some mushrooms, onions, peppers, and garlic. I pretty much followed the recipe.  Added a few sliced olives on top as well as a little parmesan cheese.  I know, PALEO POLICE.  Note: watch out for the lid of the olive can…there WILL be sharp edges if you don’t have a fancy can opener. Also, if you slice the side of your thumb, there WILL be blood.  Just throwing that out there.   

I also made a sweet potato pizza for my husband.  For his I added sauce, beef/sausage mixture, pepperoni, and cheese.  I sent it to work with him last night.  He has not given me a review on it yet.  I’m sure he loved it.

You can make this by using the recipe HERE.

Note: our puppy dog wanted to help.  As you can see, his snout approves of this recipe.

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