Mushroom Smothered Pork Chops – Are You KIDDING Me?!?!

One of the things I’ve missed since going Paleo is Mushroom Soup! You can make so many things awesome with a great Mushroom Soup. So I really wanted to make Pork Chops (the really thick yummy kind) awesome with some kind of mushroom soup.  I scoured the internet drooling over so many recipes until I found this one from Fast Paleo. It was so easy and it tasted amazing!! My family said that this one is definitely going in “THE BOOK” of fabulous food! I altered the original recipe a bit, because I don’t know how to follow a recipe…. sorry 🙂


Ingredients:

  • 4 thick pork chopsIMG_7639
  • salt, pepper, thyme and rosemary to season chops
  • coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 lb mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 T minced garlic
  • 1 T oregano
  • 1 C chicken broth
  • 1 C coconut milk (if you are using canned, I recommend mixing the whole can up really well, then pouring out 1 C for this meal)

Directions

  1. Season the chops with Salt, Pepper, Thyme and Rosemary – I put on a pretty good coating.
  2. Medium / High heat, melt coconut oil and fry the pork chops 5 minutes on each side. Remove from pan.
  3. Saute onions and mushrooms for 5 minutes, add garlic and saute for another 3 minutes, add oregano and saute until most liquid is gone.IMG_7642
  4. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low / medium and add pork chops back in the pan. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Uncover and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  5. Pour in coconut milk, turn the heat back up to medium / high, bring to a boil then simmer for 10-15 minutes until sauce is reduced by a third to half.

I had a side salad with this for myself (I’m the only one who is Paleo) and my family had some pasta and a salad.

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Nutrition Facts
Servings 4.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 329
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 23 g 35 %
Saturated Fat 16 g 81 %
Monounsaturated Fat 4 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 57 mg 19 %
Sodium 279 mg 12 %
Potassium 747 mg 21 %
Total Carbohydrate 10 g 3 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g 7 %
Sugars 4 g
Protein 24 g 47 %
Vitamin A 0 %
Vitamin C 13 %
Calcium 5 %
Iron 18 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Turd Nuggets You Can Eat? DIY Lara Bars If It Suits You Better….

Since I am now Paleo for health concerns and Lovey Levin is done his Gluten Challenge, I wanted to find a snack everyone could eat and enjoy…. Boy did I find it and modified it, of course!!

Lovey has named them Turd Nuggets, but they are essentially DIY Lara Bars.

13671_10153170280780505_6702064033195447429_nIngredients – ONLY 4!!!

  • 1/3 C of dates (that’s a chopped measurement, so I use 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 C of craisins (raisins would work too!)
  • 1/4 C of cashews (I usually use raw organic but I just ran out)
  • 1/8 – 1/4 C of Enjoy Life chocolate (whatever you have on hand)

To make these is incredibly easy!! 10647066_10153170280550505_4335395912822907967_n

  1. Toss the measured amount of Dates and Craisins into your food processor. I use my nutribullet with the regular shake blade (not the milling blade).  Scoop into a bowl after everything is fully processed.
  2. Now toss in your chips and nuts! Do the same thing!
  3. Knead the two items together until it looks like a gigantic TURD (true story)!!17199_10153170277840505_7703813302729237871_n
  4. Pinch off a small bit and now roll into balls.

11066616_10153170277740505_9155661714084730362_nI store mine in a lidded bowl, in the fridge.  You think they would stick together but they don’t too much.  Just give them a strong shake and they will all separate.  We go through these so quickly in my house that they usually don’t make it to the fridge.

Enjoy!!

Lovey Levin’s Gluten Challenge….

Vampirates are bigger than apples!

Vampirates are bigger than apples!

Howdy out there! Lovey Levin has had appointments with a pediatric gastroenterologist and a pediatric allergist in the last few months. My husband and I have decided to start the process to a proper diagnosis of Celiac so there will be no issues when he starts school.  We thought it would take much longer than what it has to start this process, we were thinking months rather than days and weeks. It is the beginning of March and we should know by the end of March if he truly has Celiac or not.

It started with an appointment with the Pediatric Gastroenterologist, he took our history and food logs over the years and reactions to gluten (it’s been almost a year since his last one).  He referred us to a an allergist to have him skin tested also, for gluten sensitivity. Lovey passed the skin prick tests for all common allergens, including topical gluten. Then he had a blood test, testing antibodies for gluten and those also came back below 4. We knew they would as he has been gluten free for nearly two years. So on February 6 we started his gluten challenge with many bated breaths.

Quite a Happy Camper with his Blankets

Quite a Happy Camper with his Blankets

Much to our surprise there was no rash, no diarrhea, no refusals of food. In fact, this kid was in gluten heaven.  We allowed goldfish crackers to begin with then he had an English Muffin, then a bagel daily.  He had pizza one night, and he even identified it as “gluten pizza”.  We don’t tell him he is eating gluten because there is still a chance that DOES have Celiac and we would have to go back to a gluten free lifestyle.  His only symptoms so far, if they are related, are multiple #2 a day – soft but not runny, he developed a rash across his abdomen, and he has been complaining of his legs hurting.  I’ve made note of all of these things.  He will go in next week for his next blood test. If his numbers are high, they will do the endoscopy.

Going gluten free should not be a problem for our household as I am now doing Auto Immune Protocol Paleo (AIP), for my own health, which is completely gluten free.  We are curious to know what is going on with our little man and why he was unable to tolerate gluten.

5 Ingredient Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies – YUMM!

Today was a snow day for us. Why? I’m not quite sure.. It rained a little. Anyway, everyone was home from school and I was feeling like baking! I was searching on Pinterest and found a recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies that looked easy. It only had five ingredients. So I decided to try it.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1/2 C Packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 C Peanut Butter
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 C Chocolate Chips of Choice (I used Dark Chocolate)
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1st Four Ingredients

IMG_2632

Forked sugar and PB

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Mix the brown sugar with the baking soda and forked the lumps out.
  3. Add the peanut butter and egg.
  4. Mix everything together until smooth.
  5. Fold in chocolate chip
  6. Use a T measuring spoon to make uniform balls onto greased baking sheets (I foil line mine).
  7. Smoosh the balls a little, so they look like thick cookies (wet your measuring spoon and use the bottom of it to do the smooshing).
    IMG_2636

    All mixed up!

    Smooshed Cookies

    Smooshed Cookies

  8. Bake for 10-13 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool on the tray for 2-5 minutes before removing.

Okay, so my review on these are that they are good. My husband rated them at a 9.5/10 on the Yummy Cookie Scale! My opinion, they are a little crumby – have a glass of milk nearby. I would make these again! They were super easy to make, I’ll always have the ingredients on hand, and they take nearly no time at all!

ALL Done

ALL Done

Beef Stroganoff a la Lovey Levin

We needed a change up in the kitchen… too much chicken, to date. We needed to use up the ground beef sitting in my freezer.  The mushrooms needed to be used up too! So I decided to make some Beef Stroganoff. I only had to make ONE modification to make this recipe Gluten Free, so it was a pretty easy one to do.

Ingredients:

  • 1lb of ground beef
  • 3T of GF all purpose flour
  • 2t salt
  • 3T butter
  • 1lb sliced mushrooms (white or baby bellas)
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1T tomato paste
  • 10 oz beef broth
  • 1 c sour cream
  • Worcestershire sauce to taste

Directions:

  1. Brown ground beef (strain if necessary, I didn’t as there wasn’t much fat). Put aside
  2. Saute onions, mushrooms and garlic until nearly done. 6-7 minutes. Put aside (same bowl as meat)
  3. Add butter to pan, blend in GF flour to make your roux. Add in tomato paste and blend well.
  4. Stir in broth, continue to stir over medium heat until bubbling and thick.
  5. Return meat, onions, mushrooms and garlic to pan and mix well then stir in Sour Cream. Allow to reheat stroganoffto low simmer.

We served this over Gluten Free Fusilli and used baby peas as a side. It was delicious!!

Chicken Korma, Aloo Gobi and Pilau Rice – The Lovey Levin Way

keep-korma-and-curry-on-150My Guy Bri took me out for Indian earlier this week and it left me for a taste in my mouth… I wanted MORE!! Bri suggested I try Korma again. It’s naturally Gluten Free. He also asked for Pilau rice and Aloo Gobi. Pilau rice is just fragrant rice and it’s really really delicious. Aloo Gobi is spicy cauliflower and potatoes (I think the potatoes are optional but I put them in there).

I wanted to do my Korma in the slow cooker so I wasn’t attached to the stove for hours. It was our last beautiful day of the season (supposedly) and the last thing I wanted was to be glued to the stove when it was sunny and 75 outside! So Lovey Levin helped me prep dinner at 9AM!

Chicken Korma – Easy Peasy Lovey Levin Crock Pot Style! (Moderately Spicy)

I modified a recipe from AllRecipes.com – found here!

What I did will be in RED, the first items listed are in the original recipe!

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion – skinned and quartered

  • 3 garlic cloves OR 1 heaping Tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 4cm (1 1/2inch) fresh root ginger, peeled OR 2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 large chilli, seeds discarded OR 1.5 dried chili, seeds discarded
  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs OR 4 breasts
  • 1 tablespoon sunflower oil OR sesame seed oil
  • 2 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed or 1 teaspoon of ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed OR Anise seeds
  • 4 cardamom pods, crushed or 1/2 teaspoon of cardamom seeds
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I omitted)
  • 10oz chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/3 c double cream OR coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoon ground almonds or cashews (I omitted)
  • pinch salt

DirectionsIMG_1953

  1. Blend the onions, garlic, ginger and chilli in a blender or chop very finely. I tossed mine in my Nutribullet. I also put a bit of Sesame Seed Oil in there to keep things moving!
  2. Cut each thigh or breast into 4 – 6 pieces, heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the chicken. Cook over a high heat until evenly browned. Remove from pan and place in slow cooker. DO NOT OVERCOOK!
  3. Add the butter to the pan and when melted add the onion mixture. Cook over moderate heat for 3 IMG_1954minutes. Add all the spices and cook for a further minute. I browned this a bit too. We like a bit of a smoky flavor, or so My Guy Bri tells me.IMG_1955
  4. Mix in chicken stock, sugar and salt into the Crock Pot along with the onion mixture. Give it a stir.
  5. Cover and cook for 5 – 7 hours on Low (or 3 hours on high).
  6. Add the cream or coconut milk (and ground up nuts). Serve with rice.

ALOO GOBI –

Aloo means potato and Gobi means cauliflower

IMG_1984So yeah, we cheated. We had a premix seasoning packet. It’s not our usual route, but it WAS labelled Gluten Free and Organic!!! And I had to add plenty of ingredients. This packet is made from Arora Creations, and you can purchase it here!

Ingredients

In addition to this lovely packet you will need

  • 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh sliced ginger
  • 1/4 cup chopped green chili (I omitted)
  • 2 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2-3 boiled and diced potatoes

directions

  1. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat for 1 minute.
  2. Add ginger, tomatoes and stir evenly for 1 minute.
  3. Add Seasoning Packet and stir for an additional 2 minutes over medium heat.
  4. Add cauliflower and cook over medium heat for about 15 minutes, stir occasionally. For the last 5 minutes, stir in the potatoes.
  5. *Add 1/2 cup of water to mixture for extra sauce if you would like. We did not.

Pilau Rice

This is such a great versatile rice. It’s so fragrant and tasty! And SIMPLE to make! I tossed everything in my steamer!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of Basmati or Jasmine rice
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cardamom seeds
  • a few dashes of fennel seeds.
  • a few strings of saffron (if you have it)
  • enough chicken stock in lieu of water.
  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine.

Directions

  1. Rinse rise, if you need to
  2. Put rice, along with appropriate amount of chicken stock into rice steamer (you can also toss all of this into a large pot with a tight fitting lid and follow regular rice cooking directions).
  3. quickly fry up onions with a little oil of your choosing, I used peanut oil, until translucent.
  4. Add rest of ingredients to steamer pot. Cook until done! VOILA!

IMG_2001

What’s Up, Doc? How about a Carrot Cheesecake??

IMG_0686Here he is!! Did you miss him? Lovey Levin sure missed you!! He’s back and ready to cook! We are gearing up for a Carrot Cheesecake to take to our cabin to devour for breakfast. YUMM!

Lovey’s Dad, My Guy Bri, found this particular Recipe on Mel’s Kitchen Cafe! I, of course, tweaked it. It’s what I do – Sorry Mel. I don’t eat cinnamon and Levin can’t eat Gluten. It was modified to suit both of our allergies and tastes.

Happy Eating! xoxo

First we gathered our  – (modifications will be in red)

Ingredients

Cheesecake:
    • 2 (8-ounces each) packages cream cheese (or neufchatel cheese – lower fat, just as easy to cook with), room temperature
    • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 teaspoon GLUTEN FREE flour
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 cup sour cream
Carrot Cake:
    • 3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
    • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 1/4 cups GLUTEN FREE flour
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon OMITTED
    • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
    • Pinch cloves
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 pound finely grated carrots (1 cup or so)
Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream

Directions For the Cheesecake

  1. IMG_0687In a medium bowl using an electric mixer on high speed, beat the cream cheese, sugar, eggs and flour until smooth. Add the vanilla and sour cream and mix just until blended. Set aside.

 

Directions for the Carrot CakeIMG_0684

  1. Shred your carrots using a cheese shredder attachment on your food processor for easy, no fuss shredding! This took me about 2 minutes to shred everything. It seriously took me more time to scrub my carrots, as they were fresh from the ground!
  2. In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat together the oil, brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until the mixture is light creamy and light. Stir in the flour, baking soda, nutmeg, cloves and salt until just combined. Mix in the carrots.

Putting Together a Masterpiece IMG_0703

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9- or 10-inch spring-form pan or pie dish (we used a pie dish) with cooking spray, making sure it’s GLUTEN FREE! Spread half of the carrot cake batter into the bottom of the prepared pan. Spoon half of the cheesecake IMG_0706batter on top of the carrot cake layer in large dollops. Don’t spread or twirl it together. Leave spaces in between your PLOPS! Only use HALF of your cheesecake!! Now, Plop, by the spoonful, the rest of your carrot cake in between your cheesecake plops. It can be lumpy, they will smooth when baked. Spread the last half of the cheesecake batter on top of all the layers and spread with a spatula into an even layer. Tap the pan on the counter a couple of times to get rid of any air bubbles. Levin cautioned me against banging the pie dish too hard on the counter!
  2. Bake the cheesecake for 60-70 minutes (check earlier if using a 10-inch pan; it won’t bake as long as a 9-inch pan), tenting the top of the cheesecake with foil the last 20IMG_0709 -30 minutes of baking if it is browning too quickly. The cheesecake will puff a great deal in the oven thanks to the leavening in the carrot cake and it might even crack. That’s OK. It will settle after it cools and will be covered with frosting so the cracks won’t matter. Take care not to over bake the cheesecake or the carrot cake bottom and sides will be dry. It’s a fine balance between taking it out before it’s over baked but not so early that the cake batter is still raw. Keep in mind that each oven can vary in temperature so watch closely as it gets to the 60 minute mark. The top center part of the cheesecake (just about a 2- or 3-inch diameter circle) should still be slightly soft and jiggly when you take it out.
  3. Let the cheesecake cool completely on a wire rack in the pan.

Directions for Making the Really Awesome Cream Cheese Frosting!

  1. If you’re like me, I grind my own 10x (confectioners sugar) as needed. To do this, I measured how much sugar I needed, then added a T of cornstarch, I mixed it with a fork then poured a half cup at a time into my NutriBullet and using the grinding blade, made my own 10x sugar. My mother used to do this with a hand grinder. You could do it with a Mortar and Pestle, regular blender, food processor, etc.
  2. While your cake is cooling, make the frosting by whipping together the cream cheese and butter until creamy and smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar a little at a time until the frosting is well-combined with no lumps. Add the vanilla and sour cream and mix well.
  3. When the cheesecake has cooled, spread the frosting evenly over the top of the cheesecake. Cover with tin foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled before serving. The cheesecake can be made up to two days in advance.Bite-1-jpg1