Chicken on a Stick

I have so much wisdom for you because I’ve made these two hundred and fifty thousand times, but first…

Up until last week the only things I had to keep alive other than myself were my basil plant and my terrarium.  I’ve recently added a little collection of things kickstarted for the garden and also a herb garden and flowers for the front. I feel like I have 37 children. I got home and one of my peppers was wilted all the way down on it’s side like someone on life support begging to have the plug pulled.  I threw a cup of water and he was back to normal within the hour, what a fuckin drama queen.

Speaking of drama, I need minimum one extra hand to do this food photo bullshit.  I had to hold the tongs far away from me to make it look like someone else was grabbing the skewer while holding this massive Canon Rebel with my right hand crouched over the barbie.  Soooo many bad things could have happened, but my food looks great so 👍.

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Ingredients

1 yellow pepper

1 orange pepper

1 pint button mushrooms

1 zucchini

2 chicken breasts

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp onion powder

Instructions

Rule #1: Soak your sticks if they are wooden for at least 10 minutes before making your kabobs.   Otherwise, they will burn on a hot grill or in the oven.

Rule #2: Mmmmmmmmarinate.  Not just the chicken, the vegetables as well.

Keep the vegetables in a separate mixing bowl, away from the meat while it is marinating.  Disperse the olive oil and spices evenly in each bowl and mix well.  Set aside in the refrigerator for at least an hour.  Once the sticks are soaked and the ingredients are marinated, then you can assemble them randomly.  Preheat barbecue to about 400 and grill each side for about 10 minutes.

Makes about 12 skewers.

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Beet Cones, Truffle Garlic and Salmon Dinner

That awkward moment when you’re a blogger and you’re so tired that you just wanna punch the keyboard 17 thousand times and see if anything interesting is left in your soul.

Summer is here and all I wanna do is convince my roommate to rip a hole in the backyard so I can cook in an underground oven like that super cool dude from Chef’s Table and then go to sleep in the tree beside the garden so I can shoo away the bunnies that try to eat my spinach.  Probably so relatable.

Inspired by the ChefSteps Ikura cones, except totally not because I can’t afford Ikura are you kidding?  I can afford one single avocadaaaa!

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Mise en Place

Oven preheated to 350F

Vegetable Steamer

Small frying pan

Piping bag with 5-6mm star tip

Food processor

Mandolin

Ingredients

1 avocado

2 tbsp solids from canned coconut milk

1 lime, squeezed

1 tbsp coconut oil

1 beet

1 head of garlic

1 tsp truffle oil

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 chunk of yummy salmon

1 tbsp olive oil

oregano, celery seed, salt and black pepper for seasoning fishy

Beet Cones

Peel beet and slice about 1-2mm thick using a mandolin.  Lay slices flat in steamer and steam for 15 minutes.  Let cool and cut 1/4 circle from slices and roll into cones and set aside.

Avocado Filling

In a food processor, combine avocado, coconut milk solid, lime juice, and coconut oil.  Spoon mixture into piping bag and pipe into cones.

Salmon

Pretty standard.  Heat olive oil in small frying pan.  Season salmon and fry, flipping after 5 minutes.

Truffle Garlic

Chop the top off of a head of garlic and remove extra peels that may be hanging.  Separate cloves slightly and place on a chunk of tin foil.  Pour truffle oil into crevices and salt.  Roast for 20-30 minutes.

Make it look bae and Bob’s your uncle.

A Spin on Mom’s Home Cooking

I truly love hearty homemade meals.  The thing I hate is refined foods and the fact that hearty meals generally look like something that was quickly thrown together in a cafeteria line up.  What I’ve done is made a regular ass meal and made it a little more visually appealing if you want to really impress your dinner guests.

I hope you didn’t think I was gonna just talk about the food and not go on a longwinded rant about nothing.  First of all, I have a confession… I’m on day 13 of Whole30 right now.  Myself and a friend of mine wanted to see if we could do it on the DL.  THE ONLY PROBLEMMMMM, is that I haven’t written a post in over a week cause I’m eating like an actual caveman and you guys don’t wanna see this shit.  I’ve already gone through 2 jars of homemade mayo cause I just put it on everything.  I pan fried leftover sweet potatoes for breakfast this morning and put mayo on top.  Words can’t even explain how weird my eating habits are when I’m on Whole30.

The other thing, relating to Whole30 ish… I got a tattoo last night and I was under the needle for like 2 and a half hours and I was so exhausted from the pain on my ribcage that I stopped at Moxie’s restaurant on Bourbon Street to take a breather.  I looked at the whole menu and obviously there was nothing I could eat.  So I sat at the bar alone and drank a glass of water and then left.  If you want people to think you’re an asshole, go to a restaurant and order water.  I NEEDED THIS OKAY.

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What It Is:

Zucchini, thinly sliced using a mandolin and cut into circles using a food mould.  I spread some truffle oil and sea salt over it and roasted it uncovered for 10 minutes.

Spiralized carrots with garlic powder and salt.  Microwaved for 30 seconds to make it soft.

Free run chicken thighs, roasted with cumin, chilli powder and salt.

Drizzled with balsamic reduction.

Garnished with fresh basil and broccoli sprouts.

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Easy Af Chicken Burgers

*update* fuck.

This post probably isn’t going to make sense because I’m drinking wine and watching the playoffs and waiting for Edmonton to clobber all you San Jose bitches.  I don’t even follow hockey, it’s just an Edmonton pride thing.

First barbecue of the year and surprisingly, I’m not that upset about it not being beef.

No Beef Day 12/365

I can feel the iron deficiency taking over my body.  Especially during yoga.  Sun salutation A, when I go from forward fold to roll allllll the way up, arms up, look up – I get so light headed I wanna topple over and have a nap.  I got a bunch of kale and pineapple juice and ginger for smoothies in the morning so hopefully that solves it.  Also, I’m allergic to pineapples so this could actually be the dumbest idea I’ve had all week.

A cool way to test if you’re iron deficient is if you have gold jewelry, it will react with your skin.

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Holy fuck my ring is BENT.

IMG_0746.JPGIngredients

1 lb ground chicken

1/4 white onion, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 egg

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

1/4 tsp celery seed powder

Instructions

Idk, just smash it all together in a mixing bowl and throw it on the barbie. *sips wine*

Thai Roast Chicken

Disclaimer:  I already know this photo is ugly and overexposed.  I was so hungry I took one photo and said fuck it, and literally ate from the whole chicken with my hands and then continued to eat the asparagus and veggies with my fingers as well.  Yolo.

So many good things happened today.  We got up early to go to the farmers market and made it downtown by 8am and realized the market didn’t open until 9 so we had some primo coffee at Credo, then went for breakfast at Blue Plate Diner and then went to the market to pick up my paleo buns from Food in the Nud and then went to yoga and then went shopping and found metal straws which is exciting enough on it’s own… but then I also found Stumptown Coldbrew coffee, which change my life the first time I tried it and didn’t think I’d ever see it again, and then I got Bernard Callebaut dark chocolate and now I’m making a new paleo/vegetarian soup for the books.  On top of all that, my husband, G-Eazy just released a bunch of new music which is blowing my mind right now.

I LOVE MY LIFE, I LOVE MY COFFEE, I LOVE MY MUSIC, I LOVE MY FOOD, I LOVE MY FRIENDS AND I LOVE THE SMELL OF LEMONGRASS.

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Also, took this photo this morning because I deeply appreciate this display downtown Edmonton.

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The Ugly Thai Chicken

Ingredients

1 chicken

1 yellow cooking onion

1 red thai chile pepper

1 square inch fresh ginger

1 tbsp olive oil

1 lime, squeezed

1/2 tsp sea salt

Instructions

Like clearly this is probably not anything remotely close to how they eat chicken in Thailand but I was directly inspired by my Thai soup and wanted to see if I could capture it in a sauce so… here ya go.

Preheat oven to 375F.  Quarter the yellow onion and put 3/4 of it into the cavity of the chicken.  Place chicken in a roasting pan on a roasting rack.

In a food processor, combine 1/4 of onion leftover with remaining ingredients and blend until red thai pepper is completely dissolved.  Pour over chicken and spread evenly.  Roast for 45 minutes. (Or 20 minutes per pound)

Pro tip:  Always keep the bones for broth to make your next soup.  I roast them and put them in the freezer for a rainy day. 😀

Mango Kiwi Salsa (Fish Tacos)

I have like 6 recipes I haven’t posted yet but I need to not e-mail blast you guys 7 times a week so I’m mentally calculating the appropriate amount of time to wait between posts.  How did I dooooo?

I just got back from our first snowboarding trip of the season to Lake Louise.  The view from the Top of the World chair lift was so breathtaking, easily making it my favourite run I’ve ever been down.  I haven’t been to Whistler or Revelstoke yet so take my opinion with a grain of salt.  Whistler is the goal for next year, for sure.  It’s hard to see from my iPhone photo and also because there was pretty heavy snowfall at the top but look at it anyway.

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I made this salsa for some fish tacos heavily inspired by a dire craving for vegetables after eating 2 massive donuts and an entire pizza on Valentine’s Day.  I didn’t even bother ordering a gluten free crust.  It was full-on fuck it o’clock.  I’m an adult, whatever, who cares.  I eat 90% paleo, that was my 10%.

Ps:  I haaaate cilantro so if you want to try this with cilantro instead of mint, go ahead but you’re gross.

IMG_0600.JPGIngredients

1/4 red onion, loosely chopped

1 ripe mango, peeled and deseeded

2 kiwis, peeled and chopped

1 jalapeno, deseeded and chopped

1 red pepper, deseeded and chopped

1 lime, squeezed

1 tsp salt

1 tsp garlic powder

1/4 cup fresh mint leaves

Instructions

Combine everything in a food processor and chop for 3-4 seconds, depending how chunky you would like your salsa.  If you do not have a food processor, you can chop the vegetables yourself at whatever thickness you prefer.

SUPER AWESOME BONUS RECIPE

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Pan sear fresh tilapia with salt, cumin and chilli powder in coconut oil.  Blend an avocado with lime juice, fresh garlic, a pinch of salt and 1 tbsp freshly chopped basil.  Place salsa, guac, fish and some freshly diced tomatoes in a romaine lettuce boat.  Squeeze lime over everything.  Enjoy!

Open Faced Sandwiches

Happy one year to my Instagram!  (@loveofpaleo) I’ve always wanted to be like one of those companies that expresses themselves on social media by saying “we”… Like, “We’re so excited to announce…” Or, “We’ve worked really hard to bring you…”, but the reality is that it’s literally just me working 3 jobs with a food blog trying not to die.  The goal is not to die.  *eye twitch*

These are not actual sandwiches, please leave me alone about my choice of words.  It’s a sweet potato slice with random ingredients on top.  I could probably eat these for a week straight and not get sick of them so eat it. (pun)

openfaced.JPGIngredients

1 sweet potato, sliced

1 can tuna

1 tbsp mayo

1 avocado

1 sliced cucumber

1/4 cup mint leaves

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp sea salt

Instructions

Preheat oven to 375F.  Place sweet potato slices flat on baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.  Kinda just put whatever you want on it.  This is dumb.  Trust me with the fresh mint leaves though.  Game. Changer.

Burger (Question Mark?)

Day 21 of Whole30.  I keep forgetting I’m on Whole30 until I want a glass of wine.  Or until someone tries to put food in my mouth and I have to ninja my way out of it.  I kinda just took whatever I had left from last weekend’s haul of food and made this lovely specimen.  It has burger-esque features.  ALSO, I just wanted to say you’re welcome – for not having advertisements on my blog.  I get so f*ing irritated when I’m trying to look at a page and it takes 10 minutes to load cause there are ad’s all over the place and my computer starts to overheat just attempting to comprehend wtf is going on.  You is welcomeeeee.

(Makes a bunch)

burger.JPGIngredients

1 sweet potato, sliced about 1/2″ thick

1 tomato, sliced

1lb ground beef

2 tbsp homemade mayo

4 large free range eggs

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp cracked pepper

2 garlic cloves

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Instructions

*sigh* so much typing.

Preheat oven to 375F.  Place sweet potato slices on a large baking sheet.  Using a pastry brush, brush all the sweet potatoes with olive oil.  Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder, then flip them over and repeat on the other side.  Bake pucks for about 30 minutes.

Mix ground beef, 2 eggs, salt, pepper and garlic cloves.  Roll into small flat patties and pan fry covered on medium heat for about 5 minutes each.

Pan fry 2 other eggs.

Set down pucks on aesthetically pleasing slate tray.  Add burger patty.  Then tomato slice.  Then Mayo.  Then Egg.

Eat with no flatware.  Lay down because you ate too fast.

Cauliflower Risotto with Chicken Sausage

The first time I tried risotto was a very monumental day in my life.  I didn’t realize you could make rice dishes different ways and they all had different names.  I genuinely assumed you just fried it with chicken and that was how rice happened.  Cut to the point in my life where I don’t eat rice and found out you can shred cauliflower to replace it in any recipe and here we are!

Also.  I need you to read the ingredients on this sausage from Sunworks Farm.  I haven’t had sausage in almost 5 years so this made me very emotional.  The casing is beef collagen so it’s totally pork free.

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risotto

Ingredients for “Rice”

1 head of cauliflower

2 tomatoes, diced

1/2 yellow onion, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tsp chili flakes

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp cracked pepper

Ingredients for Sauce

1 butternut squash, peeled and diced

1/2 yellow onion, chopped

1/4 cup olive oil

salt and pepper for seasoning

2 cups vegetable broth

4 sausages

Instructions

Using a cheese grater or food processor, shred entire head of cauliflower.  In a large frying pan, fry onion and garlic in olive oil and season with salt, pepper and chilli flakes.  Add cauliflower and tomato and simmer covered on low for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375F.  In a large mixing bowl, combine butternut squash, onion, olive oil, salt and pepper.  Spread across large baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes.  Once soft, remove and add to blender and purée with vegetable broth.

In a small frying pan, fry sausages and chop into chunks.

Combine sauce with cauliflower mixture and sausage.  Serve hot.

Portobellos Stuffed with Garlic Shrimp, Avocado and Spinach

I’ve been hovering around a dangerous level of sadness for a couple of months now… So I decided to google “foods that make you happy” and mushrooms were around the top of the list because of the selenium content.  I thought it was interesting that we all seem to back it up even though there isn’t much scientific evidence.  Spinach was also up there because it is high in folate, also known as vitamin B:  The happy vitamin.  Oily fish are rich in omega-3.  Shrimp is very low on the scale, but it’s there nonetheless.  A daily supplement of Omega-3 has proven to be more effective than prescription antidepressants in some cases.  And of course the avocado, a great source of omega-3.  Obviously food won’t fix everything for me, I have a lot of life changes that need to be made very soon.  The best wisdom I have to share aside from my delicious recipes is a quote:

Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, surrounding yourself with assholes.  – William Gibson

There are a lot of other ways to shake the winter blues.

Mood lights are amazing to be around after a long day at the office forgetting what sunlight is.  Light boxes are effective not only in seasonal depression but also clinical depression and help you regain focus.

It’s a little bit redundant to say, but go to the gym.  Or yoga, or cross fit, or HIIT training, or kickboxing, anything that makes you excited to get out of the house.  I say it’s redundant because you’ve probably heard a million times that physical activity releases endorphins but sometimes it’s difficult to even find the motivation to go… which is why I like to treat myself to new clothes, new water bottles, new supplements here and there that I’m actually excited to use.

Tanning beds.  A doctor will be reluctant to recommend this, however a lot of doctors do it themselves.  Even a 4 minute session is enough vitamin D exposure to lift your mood without actually tanning you.  Talk to a tanning advisor or your doctor about your skin type beforehand.

Something I hate being told, but love to remind myself, is to be grateful.  I spend so much time stewing in my own anger and frustration over the things I can’t change that I forget how far I’ve come.  Think of everything you have now that you didn’t have 5 years ago.  Now imagine what you could have 5 years from now, knowing that.

Anyway, here’s the mushrooms.

IMG_2813.JPGIngredients

6 mini portobellos

1/2 lb peeled, deveined shrimp

1 avocado, cubed

2 cups fresh spinach

2 tbsp coconut oil

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp oregano

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tsp pure olive oil

 

Instructions

In a small frying pan, sauté the spinach in 1 tbsp of coconut oil and lightly dust with some garlic powder and salt.  Set to the side in a small bowl.  In the same pan, using the leftover oil, combine shrimp, avocado, salt, garlic powder, oregano and olive oil.  Simmer on low heat for 10 minutes.

In a large frying pan, in 1tbsp coconut oil, place portobellos face down with the cores removed.  Drizzle balsamic vinegar overtop.  Simmer for 5 minutes and then flip and simmer 5 more minutes.

Place all portobellos on a serving tray and line the inside of them with spinach and top each one with shrimp and avocado mixture.  Garnish with fresh basil.