Posts Tagged by paleo
|October 23, 2013|
There are tons of tempting appetizers that pack more calories than cheeseburger. Stay away from creamy or cheesy apps and dip into some guacamole.
Avocados pack a dose of healthy fats into your diet – rich in vitamins A, C, E, K, B6 and your Omega-3s.
Really, where the turning point is when eating guacamole are the excessive amounts of chips usually involved. Just like when I go to any mexican food restaurant, I limit my number of chips before I even start eating them, counting the chips as I eat – that way I hold myself accountable to a quantifiable number.
- 2 avocados
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1/4 of a roma tomato, finely diced
- 1/8 of a white onion, finely diced
- 1/2 of a jalapeño, finely diced, seeds removed
- 1 tsp lime
- 1 orange bell pepper (optional for garnish)
- blue corn chips (or the chips of your choice)
Cut avocados in half and remove the seed. Scoop out avacado from the peel and put in a mixing bowl. Using a fork, mash the avocado until you reach your desired consistency. (Personally, I like mine a little chunky.) Add the rest of the ingredients and stir together.
To make the Jack-O-Lantern bell pepper, use a pairing knife and cut a face out. (I free-handed it.) Pull any seeds or flesh out that interfere with the face through the cut mouth opening.
Serve with blue corn chips (they look black) and/or slices of orange bell pepper.
You can play around with the jalapeño and add more or less if you like things more mild or on the hot side. This recipe yields for a mild to medium guacamole (in my opinion).
|July 8, 2013|
A coworker of mine brought in a ton of HUGE white grapefruits for everyone to take home. I didn’t know much about white grapefruits. Most grapefruits I’ve eaten are pink inside. After doing what anyone would do (hello Google!) I discovered white grapefruits are generally a little more tart and bitter than the pink ones, which tend to be a little sweeter.
So I figured I’d try it in recipe like a lime. Less sour so I could make a simple recipe with only a few ingredients, no salt needed to balance out the sour. I’d never experimented with them before but my recipe was a success!
Sneak peek into my next recipe: it also includes white grapefruit and has my best friend’s stamp of addition on it, so you better buy some extra grapefruits. I’ll post that one later this week once I get my new memory card reader in the mail. (I lost mine, fail).
White Grapefruit Cilantro Dressing
- 1/2 white onion
- 4-5 cloves of garlic (I used 4 because my cloves seemed larger than usual)
- 1 bundle of cilantro (about 1.5 cups chopped)
- juice of 1 white grapefruit (no more than 3/4 cup)
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil (make sure it says for dressing and not for frying)
Put the onion and garlic in the food processor and chop fine. Add the juice and chopped cilantro. (My cilantro comes from the regular market in a bundle and I have seen it like that at multiple stores. But if your store doesn’t sell the cilantro in a bundle, once you chop it up it should equal around 1.5 cups.) Once it’s all chopped, almost like a pesto, add the olive oil and continue to allow the food processor to do it’s work until it’s all mixed and chopped into a pesto (or liquid) form.
Recipe makes about a full bowl full. If you make it, plan to eat it all week or freeze some for later.
Note: A really nice high speed blender like a Vitamix or Blendtec will be able to process the recipe into a liquid. More cost effective products like my food processor (a Cuisinart) will produce more of a pesto texture.
ALSO!!! This recipe tastes amazing cooked as well!!! Sorry, I don’t have any photos but I have been making my scrambled eggs with it, and using it as a sauce for chicken on the BBQ. It’s very versatile. If you prefer a less potent garlicky oniony taste, you can sauté the garlic and onion before adding it to the food processor. I keep mine raw until I add it into my recipes (like my grilled chicken) so I have the option to cook or not to cook. AND, pre warning you – worst garlic breath ever. Definitely not a good date food, haha.
|June 18, 2013|
I’ve never really felt comfortable or confident enough to show a side-by-side before and after photo. I think it’s because I was ashamed of how I looked in addition to not being happy with where I am right now. I am definitely not ready for a before and after photo yet. But I am finally feeling comfortable to show a side-by-side.
I refuse to call it “before and after” because it’s not. After insinuates that I am done and I am where I want to be physically, and that’s not the case. And before insinuates that there is one point or one photo that symbolizes before you began to get into shape and show progress. Well, I have had ups and downs my whole life when it comes to weight loss. Of course there were times that I was at my heaviest, but there were also times where I was almost at my goal weight. Right now, there is still a lot of body fat to lose and a lot more toning to get done. But honestly, I feel great right now and I think I look pretty good too. (Photo below is a year’s progress)
One of the biggest struggles I’ve had to overcome is to let go of the past. It’s hard to see yourself overweight and actually wanting (or willing) to share any of those photos. But the truth is, those photos exist and I can’t change that, nor would I want to. All my photos have some great memories attached to them. It’s only been recently that I can look at those photos and think to myself, “wow, look how big I was“ – versus, “wow, look how big I am.” I don’t think I will ever look at old photos and see only the good memory and not see overweight girl in addition . But the important thing is that I can recognize that it’s past. I see that I’ve changed, both physically and mentally. I’m not the person in those photos. I am much more confident, driven, and overall much happier.
Losing weight is as much a mental game as it is a physical one. Our bodies can achieve so much more than we think they can. I gave up alcohol for about 5 months just to prove to myself that I could do it (and I love my happy hour.) You have to test your limits and then try to break them and climb higher and higher every time.
I used to only have my long-term goal for what I hoped to look like after losing all my weight. Now I constantly set new short term and long term goals that really don’t have much purpose or reason other than to test my limits. Currently, my goal is to do 10 pull-ups by July 4th without any resistance bands or help up from my trainer. Why did I set this goal? I just wanted to see if I can do it – and I know I can with hard work.
I won’t ever say losing weight is easy. If it was, I wouldn’t still be trying to get there. But once you learn to embrace the mental game and are willing to challenge everything you thought you could do, it will get easier.
|March 12, 2013|
If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen my photo a while back of my fatal attempt at making paleo pancakes. Once I tried to make the “just add water” Bisquick pancakes, let’s just say they were inedible. Every time I tried to make pancakes on my own, I failed miserably. But I really wanted to make green pancakes for St. Patrick’s Day so I volunteered the time of my handy dandy boyfriend, let’s call him the Pancake King for now, to help me out with this recipe.
My first attempt was just like any other. My pancakes would never end up on someone’s breakfast plate. The Pancake King told me I had two big problems: 1. my batter was too liquidy 2. my flame was too high. So I modified the recipe and lowered my flame and voila! The magic happened. It’s amazing what a little guidance can do!
Spinach Banana Pancakes for St. Patty’s Day
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 2 overripe bananas
- 4 cups fresh spinach
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp baking powder
Add the oats to a food processor or high speed blender until the oats are finely chopped – borderline powder. Then add the banana and spinach to the food processor until the banana and spinach have blended evenly into each other and there are no more chunks of anything. Then add all the liquid ingredients and blend. Next, all the dry ingredients. You can easily do this with a stand mixer as well. However, the oats, banana and spinach need a blender or food processor to get the right texture and I prefer to only get one appliance messy. My food processor did the job just fine.
Then use your choice of oil, butter, or non-stick cooking spray to coat your pan. Bring flame to medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, pour the batter in the center to make your desired pancake size.
Here’s where the Pancake King comes back in. I had no idea when to flip a normal pancake let alone a green one. A little tip on the flipping green pancakes, you can’t judge it by the golden edges because the green doesn’t really change color the way a normal pancake would. It’s best to watch for bubbles. When you see bubbles form on the top, flip!
If you don’t allow them to cook all the way through, they will be mushy. This was the other hard part to judge. I did it by taste testing the first one. Then I knew for sure the right timing for the right consistency.
This batch made about a dozen pancakes for me. It’s very easy to cut the recipe ingredients in half if you only want to cook enough for 2. You can top it with whatever floats your boat. Photographed, I topped it with fat-free whip cream and sprinkles. The Pancake King chose to top it with peanut butter. The options are endless.
|October 16, 2012|
I love bananas. Let’s just put that out there. Well I happen to have a bunch of overripe baby bananas. As any baker knows, NEVER throw away those spotted nanas. What do you do with them? You bake!
Now let’s talk about baby bananas. Yes, there is such a thing. You can find them at your regular super market (or at least I find them at my regular super market). They are so adorable and have a slightly creamier texture. They look like regular bananas, only snack size. Perfect for lunches or for a quick snack. Or in my case, what kind of baby cake recipe would this be without baby bananas?
My Gluten Free Banana Bread Baby Cakes are made with almond flour to mimic bread. I am not a xanthan gum fan so I often use other flour alternatives. Because of this, these cakes don’t keep as long. If you wait more than a day to eat, they will start to have a mushy texture so plan to bake last minute for a party or event. And did I mention, if you skip the frosting and caramel, these are completely Paleo Diet friendly!
Gluten Free Banana Bread Baby Cakes
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup walnut oil
- 1/4 cup raw honey
- 2 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 5 mashed baby bananas (or 2 regular bananas)
- 1 1/4 cup almond flour
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 6 tbsp of unsalted butter
- 16 oz cream cheese
- 3/4 cup agave nectar
- 4 tsp vanilla extract
**Optional caramel to drizzle on top. I used store bought caramel but you can make yours from scratch if you like.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Whisk all the ingredients together in order adding each one by one as you whisk to prevent clumping. You should be adding the banana and almond flour last. Line a baby cupcake tin with cupcake liners and spray lightly with a non stick cooking spray. I used the walnut oil in an oil mister because the non-stick I normally use has gluten. Who knew, right?
Fill each liner to the top with the batter. (Because there’s no flour or baking powder, these won’t rise much.) Bake for 13 minutes. Time may vary depending on the type of pan you use. Use a wooden toothpick to poke a baby cake or two. If the stick comes out clean then your cakes are done. If it doesn’t, then you either need more time or you didn’t mash your bananas all the way.
Now for the frosting, let the butter and cream cheese stand until room temperature. Mix all the ingredients together. I used an electric mixer for this part, no hand mixing for me. If you want a sweeter frosting, feel free to add sugar rather than agave, but I like to keep things a little more natural. Use a piping bag or cut a hole in the end of a ziplock and pipe the desired amount of frosting on the baby cake. Drizzle with caramel and enjoy!