Broccoli Tailgate Salad

In honor of my first tailgate of the season, and the farmers market fresh produce coming on strong, i present you with the easiest and probably most delicious item you can bring to a football party (excluding cheap beer – but that’s not clean)

Broccoli Tailgate Salad:

2-3 heads of fresh broccoli
1 lb unadulterated bacon
Salt and Pepper
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup slivered almonds or sunflower seeds
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp coconut oil

Get ready for the easiest / least dish intensive mealprep ever!

Start frying all your bacon in a skillet (more experienced twentysomethings may prefer to use oven – 350f for 25 minutes – save your drippings!)

Grab your kitchen scissors and start snipping the broccoli into little florets right into the bowl you plan to store it all in.

Grab your raisins and either toss them in or you can snip them in half like I did.

Throw in the almonds.

As your bacon finishes cooking, set to the side to cool a bit and the either crumble or snip into slivers ontop of the broc-nut-raisin medley.

Once all the bacon is cooked, turn off the stove and drop the coconut oil in the skillet to melt.

Dump the medley in the skillet and stir around so the broccoli starts sopping up the bacon fat and oil (but don’t let it get too cooked).

Pour the balsamic and apple cider vinegar in the skillet and continue stirring (don’t let it cook too much!)

Taste it.

Grind/sprinkle as much salt and pepper as you think it needs for taste (it shouldn’t be much)

And then just scoop or dump it all right back into that Tupperware bowl to tote along to the parking lot/back yard/living room where the pre-gaming occurs.

Hot-Grilled Tilapia in Creamy Garlic Spinach Sauce

Forget the fish – this spinach is a knock-your-socks off way to rekindle a long lost love affair with green leafy vegetables. The protein (for once in a paleo blue moon) is taking the back seat tonight. 20130715-225455.jpgHot-Grilled Tilapia in Creamy Garlic Spinach Sauce

2 cups frozen spinach
1/2 avocado
1 tbsp chopped garlic
¼ cup coconut or almond milk
4 tilapia fillets
1 tbsp cumin
2 tbsp chili pepper
1 tsp paprika
2 tbsp franks redhot
salt and pepper

This recipe is almost insultingly simple, and I apologize for those of you who expected an expert-level spinach set of instructions:

Steam spinach. (I use the microwave and a ziplock bag… Because I’m in my 20s and can still ignore the inkling that it has negative chemical-based consequences for my health)

In food processor, mix spinach, avocado, garlic, 1 tbsp chili powder, hot sauce and almond/coconut milk. (taste and add salt and pepper as needed)

Brush or sprinkle Tilapia fillets with mixed cumin, chili, and paprika.

Grill fish to desired blackening.

There’s not much else to say… smother that blackened peppered fishy with some green creamy sauce of goodness and eat that bad boy. Don’t let that fish take away from the spinach though!

Paleo Parsnip Fries

Parsnips. The cashier at Wegmans may not have been able to identify the root vegetable at first glance BUT these lil fatty albino carrots are SO much better than baked potato fries. Seriously. They get the perfect crunchy-soft consistency and I can’t wait to stock up on all the parsnips that I can get my hands on this fall at the farmers market.

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Parsnip Fries:

2 large parsnips
olive/coconut oil
sea salt

Preheat oven to 450F.

Slice parsnips into fry-size chunks and toss in oil and salt.

Place on baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, flipping halfway through until golden and delicious.

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Pulled Pork Cubano Roll-ups

Pulled Pork Cubano Roll-ups:

1 lb organic nitrate-free deli sliced Ham (I use Applegate or Wegmans)
1 jar dill pickles (paleo friendly)

Pulled Pork:
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Pork Loin
1 cup orange juice
tbsp: pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, paprika, salt, cumin, oregano, lemon juice
2 tbsp brown mustard (or you could use mustard powder)

Cook Low 6 hours. Shred with Fork. Mix with hot sauce, or paleo-friendly barbecue sauce.

When ready to consume, roll pickle spears and pulled pork in ham slices with a little extra mustard or sauce (but of course you can use the dipping technique as well)

Red White and Burger

Happy Fourth of July! Grilled Red Pepper and Onion Turkey Burgers with Tomato and Lettuce Wrapped have been waiting oh so patiently for the mid-summer holiday! I love an excuse to buy every red fruit and vegetable in the produce section.

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Red White and Burger:

1.25 lb ground turkey
1 red bell pepper
2 small onions
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 egg
2 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)

Chop pepper into large chunks and grill until become slightly soft with nice black char marks.

Slice and dice onions and mix into ground turkey with egg and seasoning.

Let pepper cool, dice, and mix into ground turkey mix.

Form into patties and throw on the grill.

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Serve with iceburg lettuce to wrap, onions, tomatoes, avocado and any other patriotic fixins you may fancy. Happy Independence!

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Citrus Cilantro Fish Tacos

It’s about time to add more fish-based recipes, and keeping true to twentysomething fashion, we can start with more MEXICAN! The sweet potato skin mock-tortillas did it again: possibly better than traditional flour and corn tortillas. This was super easy to make despite post-WOD exhaustion too, if you’re ever looking for a last-minute-haven’t-meal-prepped paleo dinner.

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Citrus Cilantro Fish Tacos

4-6 whiting fillets
1 red bell pepper
1 sweet potato
6 sprigs fresh cilantro
1 tbsp chopped garlic
2 tbsp lemon/lime juice
2 oranges
2 tbsp frank’s red hot sauce

Grill fillets and red bell pepper on the good ol’ George Foreman (or a real grill if you’re fancy) until nice sharp char marks.

Finely chop cilantro and mix with lemon/lime juice, juice from one orange and hot sauce.

Chop second orange and red pepper and sauté with garlic in pan.

Add fish to pan when orange and garlic start to carmelize and pour sauce over top.

Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Bake sweet potato (poke with fork, microwave HIGH 4 minutes, flip, HIGH 4 minutes) halve, and scoop out flesh (leaving some flesh around the skin)

Scoop fish and citrus/pepper sauce into sweet potato skins.

Garnish with extra cilantro and lime.

Italian Venison Spa-squashi Casserole

This recipe comes to you complements of my Crossfit partner-in-crime, Maria and her Craig: hand-hunted game meat! Best. Gift. EVER! I will happily accept ANY deer meat for freezer-clearing purposes. Not ONLY is it delicious but also right on cue with our trainer’s prompts to use “varied game meat” in our diet. And probably the best part is… there’s still MORE!

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Italian Venison Spa-squashi Casserole:

2 lbs venison (or stew beef)
1 spaghetti squash
3 tomatoes
1 onion
2 cu tomato sauce (make sure it’s paleo!)
1 egg
3 cu frozen spinach or collard greens
2 tbsp minced garlic
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp basil
1 tsp salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400F.

Cut up tomatoes and onion.

Slice spaghetti squash in half and bake for 25 minutes.

Cook stew beef/venison and sautee tomatoes, garlic and onion on stove or in slow cooker with tomatoes, garlic and onion. (Slow Cooker – Low 6 hours)

Scoop spaghetti squash with a fork (spaghetti squash style) into a bowl and mix with oregano, basil, garlic, salt and pepper.

Stir in the meat, tomatoes and onion.

Layer half in baking dish, layer frozen spinach, and then layer the second half of spaghetti mixture.

Sprinkle garlic powder on top with some EVOO (if you consider olive oil to be paleo).

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Sorry, no zone numbers this week… so to make up for it I have a:
BONUS SIDE RECIPE!!!

Baked Sweet Spaghetti Fritters
1 sweet potato
1 spaghetti squash
1 egg
¼ cup almond flour
2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 400F.
Bake sweet potato (poke with fork, microwave HIGH 4 minutes, flip, HIGH 4 minutes) halve, and scoop out flesh.
Mix with spaghetti squash (cut in half, scoop out seeds, add a little bit of water in each half, cover with wax paper and microwave HIGH 8 minutes)
Pat spaghetti squash dry with paper towel to absorb as much liquid as possible.
Add egg, almond flour and salt.
Roll into a log using wax paper and flatten slightly so the log becomes a plank about ½ – 1” high.
Slice and place on baking sheet.
Bake for 12-15 minutes, flip, and bake for another 10.

Can you tell I have an excess amount of Spaghetti Squash? Those are complements of a co-worker partner-in-crime who had to ditch pantry items during a move. I LOVE FREE FOOD! Especially when it’s paleo.