Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bacon Wrapped Pineapple

If you type  - Bacon Wrapped - into the search box on this blog you'll get 10 different recipes......and this recipe is the 11th. What can I say? We like things wrapped in bacon.

I cut a fresh pineapple into big bites from the spears I'd bought.
I took my kitchen scissors and cut a package of uncured bacon in half.

I covered a baking sheet with big Reynold's Wrap because I am all about the easy clean-up.
I wrapped each piece of pineapple with a half-piece of bacon and laid it on the baking sheet with the end of the bacon on the bottom. (This prevents them from unwrapping themselves.)

I baked them in a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes. Different bacon thickness and different oven temps can affect the times, so take a look at yours and if they don't look crispy, go a little longer, right?
You can't beat this combination. We ate them up pretty quickly. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Hazelnut Cinnamon Raw Chocolates

Sometimes chocolate is just a craving. The least we can do is choose the best way possible to indulge. That's why I worked on this recipe today. It's cocoa, coconut oil, hazelnut flour goodness in little muffin papers. The roasted hazelnut on top makes the whole thing just sing..... and it takes 5 minutes to get them into the fridge!

I stirred the following ingredients up in a small bowl:

2/3 cup coconut oil, warm
2 TBSP cocoa powder
2 TBSP real maple syrup
2/3 cup hazelnut flour  (Other nut flours work also, like almond flour. You can also make your own   hazelnut flour in the food processor with hazelnuts.  I get mine from nuts.com)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch salt

I put 12 mini cupcake paper liners in my mini cupcake pan.
I spooned the mixture into the liners and put them into the fridge to solidify.

I put a few whole hazelnuts into a 350 degree oven for 6 minutes. When they cooled off just a little, I put them on top of the raw chocolate treats. Yum!
Toasted coconut would be wonderful on top, too.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Paleo Fried Yellow Zucchini

Yes, you read that right - yellow zucchini.  A farmer at the farmer's market this week pointed them out to me and they were delicious. If you see any, get them!
This recipe works the same for green zucchini, yellow squash, and for Paleo Fried Green Tomatoes, too.

I put some coconut oil in my grill pan and heated it up.

I washed and cut 2 yellow zucchini. They were about 1 cm thick.
On a small plate, I mixed:

2 TBSP almond flour
1 TBSP coconut flour
1/2 tsp basil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

I laid both sides of the zucchini into the mixture and then put them into the pan. I cooked them 3-4 minutes on each side until tender and delicious.  Quick and easy!

                    Yellow squash on the left - yellow zucchini on the right.  See the difference? 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Paleo Raspberry Dessert Cups

I love raspberries. Do you?
I used them in this easy paleo treat today. This photo shows 8 of them.... because 4 of them were eaten at this stage while they were setting up in the fridge:

Check out how easy it was!  (You may choose to warm the layers in the microwave instead, but I've given up the microwave - all those other countries can't be wrong....)

I  put 12 cupcake liners in a cupcake pan.

I put a big skillet with a little water on the stove over medium low heat. (If you have a double boiler, you could use that instead.) I placed a corning ware dish in the water and added the following ingredients so that they could heat up and blend slowly:

3 TBSP coconut oil
3 TBSP almond butter
5 TBSP cocoa
1 TBSP + 1 tsp raw or local honey
1 tsp vanilla
2 TBSP coconut cream concentrate (coconut butter)
1 TBSP cinnamon
pinch of sea salt

I stirred this up and put a heaping TBSP into each cupcake liner. I pushed this mixture down a little in each one so that it covered the bottom. I put the cupcake pan into the fridge so that this layer could harden while I worked on the next.

I rinsed the corning ware dish so I could just use it again for the coconut layer.  It DOES need to be in the skillet of water again! I added the following ingredients into this dish:

2 TBSP coconut cream concentrate (coconut butter)
2 TBSP coconut oil
2 TBSP pasture butter from grass fed cows
1 TBSP raw or local honey
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup fresh raspberries, smashed with a fork and juicy

When this mixture was melted and blended, I removed the corning ware dish from the heat and added:

 1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut chips (the big chunky stuff) and stirred until well blended. 

I took the cupcake pan out of the fridge and added the raspberry coconut mixture layer onto the cocoa layer.
Then I put it back into the fridge for 15 minutes.

The last "layer" was 24 dark chocolate chips and 1/2 tsp coconut oil, melted and stirred. I drizzled it over the top of each of the 12 little desserts evenly. I put one fresh raspberry on top of each serving.

Isn't that pretty? They're great with coffee - I just had one.
 Ger thinks they are ONE-BITE dessert cups! Ha!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Acorn Squash Sausage Bowl

Sometimes I just want dinner to be very simple, very easy, and very healthy. This was one of those nights.

I split an acorn squash in half and scooped out the seeds and stringy stuff. I placed the two halves face down in a square glass baking dish and added 1/2 inch water. I roasted the squash in a 400 degree oven for 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, I cooked 1 lb of local farmed pork sausage in a skillet over medium heat, stirring often.

When the acorn squash was tender and cooled off just enough to work with, I loosened the squash flesh form the rind and placed the squash in a bowl. I sprinkled it with smoked sea salt and black pepper.
I topped that off with some of the crumbled sausage that I'd put on paper towels to catch the grease.

I choose a ripe avocado and sliced it for the top layer.

Interesting flavor combinations and very satisfying indeed.
You know you can do this one!
It was SO good with a green Synergy kombucha with chia.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Layered Fruit Popsicles

The Crossfit Kids classes at Crossfit Countdown have been doing a great job this summer and I thought they deserved a treat.   I also figured it was a perfect way to get eleven taste-testers in one place!  After they finished up all that hard work, I helped them out with a cool-down - nine kids plus Cassie and Ger - didn't that turn out just perfect?

So here they are earning their treat:

Here they are enjoying their Layered Fruit Popsicles and identifying the flavors right before they wrote in their journals.

Here's how I made them, in case you want to treat some kids. (big or small)

First, I made sure I had a place in the freezer to put a baking dish.
I put 11 little plastic cups in a baking dish and put a popsicle stick (or craft stick) in each cup. These sticks were on the diagonal, but it didn't matter at all.

I poured some "Limeaid" (fresh lime juice, coconut water, and honey) in each cup, about 1/2 inch. I set the baking dish into the freezer for 30 minutes so that the layer could begin to freeze.

Next, I put frozen peaches, coconut water, (I didn't measure these - just make a good guess) and 1 tsp honey into the food processor and pulsed until smooth.
I took the popsicles out of the freezer and spooned the second layer onto the first layer, pushing it around the stick, until each one had a peach layer about 1/2 inch deep.

I put them back into the freezer for another 1/2 hour.
I rinsed the food processor parts and put it back together. Then I added 8 strawberries, one banana cut into bite-sized pieces, some coconut water and 1 tsp honey.

When the second fruit layer was frozen, I poured the last layer into the cups evenly and put them back into the freezer until time to go WOD.

If you make these, you can cover the tops of the ones you don't eat immediately with plastic wrap. Just poke the stick through the plastic wrap.

You could do lots of other layers, too. The peach layer was guessed as mango by Gavin, which sounds like a great idea to me. Grape juice would look good, too.....

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Paleo Butternut Squash Tomato Soup

Ger said this soup was REALLY GOOD, MOM. I was glad to hear that, of course. He's marrying Cassie and moving in twenty-some days and I won't hear that as often as I've been hearing it. I am so happy for them - I see how happy they are, making plans and moving forward with their lives. They make quite a team!!!!!

Anyway, here's how I made this awesome soup.
I halved and seeded one butternut squash. I rubbed coconut oil on a 9 x 12 glass baking dish and placed the squash cut side down and roasted it in a 400 degree oven for 45 minutes. Then I took it out and let it cool enough so that I could scoop out the butternut squash flesh from the skin and set it aside.

Next, I diced one small onion.
I put 1 TBSP coconut oil in a stock pot and added the onion. I cooked this until the onion was tender, about 5 minutes.
I added:
1 tsp Garlic Gold nuggets   (garlicgold.com) or however you like to add garlic. Fresh works, too.
1/2 tsp dried ground ginger
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
2 tsp smoked sea salt  (salttraders.com) or other sea salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2  15 oz cans diced tomatoes
2 cups organic chicken stock

I added the roasted butternut squash flesh last and then simmered for 15 minutes so that all the flavors could blend together.

Really good soup.  (If you want to have a smoother soup, use a mixer, immersion blender, or the food processor in small batches. We liked it a little chunky.)

I served this with my Rotisserie Style Crock Pot Chicken       http://feedinggersasser.blogspot.com/2013/06/rotisserie-style-crock-pot-chicken.html