Posts Tagged ‘Salsa’

Bison Steak Grilled Fajita Paleo

Here are my three main meals from today.  Breakfast was a whole bag of frozen turnips and turnip greens tossed with some ground turkey and seasoned with Mrs Dash garlic and herbs.  Probably should’ve added an egg too, because I started getting hungry faster than normal.  Oh well.  Lunch made up for it though: spaghetti squash mixed with mushrooms, marinara sauce, more leftover ground turkey, garlic chives, and goat cheese.  But it was dinner that was really exciting!

Bison Fajita Paleo Dinner

After my pilates class, I stopped by the grocery store still all sweaty and freshly worn out to grab a couple bunches of organic green and red leaf lettuce, and happened to also notice that some of the bison steaks were on an about-to-go-bad-soon sale!  I don’t remember ever having bison before, so of course I decided to try it!  We just grilled it like a steak after marinating it in red wine vinegar, black pepper, cumin, and chili powder.  I served it up finger-food style with grilled fajita veggies and salsa/guacamole dipping sauce.  It was totally delicious!  Tasted basically like steak if you ask me, though maybe a little milder in flavor.  And five minutes of research online (not the most reliable method, but hey) told me that bison is generally considered healthier than beef because it has less fat and more iron.  Cool.  I’ll pick up some more if I ever see it on Manager’s Special again.

Paleo Chicken Leg Dinner Plate

I’m still working on the best way to organize this blog… it’s a tougher thing to figure out than you’d think.  I might create a page of links to photos of my full dinner plates because one of the challenges I’ve run into with eating paleo is deciding on side dishes.  One meat and one vegetable on a plate is a totally decent simple paleo dinner, and that’s what we end up with pretty often here when I’m low on time, but what I’m really talking about is finding ways to provide a wider variety of textures, flavors, and colors to accompany that piece of delicious meat.  Like this Grilled Paleo Cumin Salsa Chicken Leg Dinner Plate.  🙂  Not bad, right?

Paleo Chicken Leg Dinner Plate

The grilled chicken is seasoned with generous amounts of cumin, chili powder, and oregano – no salt.  I’m trying to take it easy on the salt here lately.  The broccoli is frozen and microwave steamed with a little fresh grated Parmesan cheese (not exactly Paleo, but not the end of the world either).  The salad dressing is one part homemade ranch dressing mixed with two parts hot fire roasted salsa.  Add 1/4 avocado and a couple carrots from the farmers’ market, and it’s a full plate!

Paleo Chicken Leg Dinner PlateSpeaking of the farmers’ market, last Saturday was our little town’s seasonal grand opening of the summer farmers’ market!  I’m going to bed soon so I can get up nice and early… I don’t want the vendors to run out of the good stuff before I show up!  Last week, I brought home lots of lettuce, beet leaves (beets are gross but the leaves are good in a mixed salad), strawberries, tomatoes, pistachios, a dozen eggs, and a fistful of chives.  I’m excited to see what will be there tomorrow!

Paleo Cilantro Lime Fish and Salsa

I found wild-caught tilapia, normally a fairly expensive fish, on sale a couple of days ago!  I always keep my eyes out for the “manager’s special” fish because even though you have to use it right away (there’s usually only a day or two until the expiration date), the discounts are huge!

oil egg whisk paleo mayo

Allow me to start at the beginning of the meal preparation with my first ever successful batch of paleo mayonnaise!  There’s about 3/4 of a cup of oil (half coconut and half extra virgin olive oil) in the tacky snowman cup, and I only used the egg yolk not the whole egg.  And check it out – I finally broke down and bought a whisk after wasting a good 45 minutes the other day making a horribly failed batch of mayo in our blender.  The problem with the blender by the way was that I was trying to make just a small batch, and it didn’t fill the blender up enough that the blades could properly mix it.  So because I don’t ever plan to make paleonnaise in 4-cup batches at a time, I decided that splurging on a whisk was probably worth it.  😛

Thick Paleo Mayonnaise

See how beautifully thick my paleo mayo is?  And it’s so simple to make too – once you’ve acquired a whisk.  Drop an egg yolk in a glass and then whisk it continuously and vigorously while you pour in about 3/4 of a cup of any liquid state oil you want.  And by slowly, I mean SLOOOOOOWWWWWLLLYYY.  It should probably take you three whole minutes if you’re pouring continuously.  If you pour the oil in too fast, or slack off on the whisking, your ingredients will separate and become liquid instead of the wonderful spreadable mayo you see above.  So go slow, and whisk like your mayo’s life depends on it.  Because it does.

cilantro lime mayonnaise marinade ingredients

Paleo Cilantro Lime Fish MarinadePaleo Cilantro Lime Tilapia Marinade

Though I bet this would work well on other types of white fish or even on chicken too…

  1. Plain Paleo Mayonnaise, maybe about 1/3 of a cup?  Look at the picture.  That much.
  2. Fresh Cilantro, chopped up (I used half of what’s in the picture above, and then the other half for garnish later)
  3. Two diced Garlic cloves
  4. Juice of 1/2 of a Lime

Mix it together, and smear it over your meat.  These skinny tilapia fillets were done after 10 minutes uncovered on the middle rack at 350 degrees.

 

 

Finished Cilantro Lime Fish

I almost never bake fish in the oven, so I really don’t know what I’m doing, but this turned out well – moist and flaky.  Just like fish is supposed to be, right?

Roased Brussel Sprouts

I also roasted some brussel sprouts in the oven.  Just cut the ends off, slice them in half, coat them in oil/salt/pepper, and sit them sliced side down on a baking sheet for 30 minutes or so (center rack) at 375 degrees.  Bam, they’re finished and ready to serve.  But I still kind of think they’re a gross vegetable.  I didn’t like them as a kid, and I still don’t.  But I don’t hate them, and I’m a grownup now so I ate them without complaining.  I probably just won’t buy them again anytime real soon.

Paleo Cilantro Lime Tilapia

Tilapia by its nature is a really boring and bland fish – which is good if you don’t like that fishy taste.  But it does mean that you have to pump up the flavors in your dish so you don’t fall asleep while eating it.  I served mine over a bed of taco-seasoned stir-fried onions, bell peppers, and zucchini, and then topped it with fresh salsa, guacamole, a little Greek Yogurt, and some more cilantro for garnish.  Give it a good squirt with some fresh lime juice for a little extra kick too.

Summer Salsa Burger Paleo Gluten-Free Comparison

It can be intimidating to go Paleo at first… It’s not just gluten-free, it’s rice, corn, beans, legumes, and mostly potato-free, it’s lower in carbohydrates, it’s avoiding processed foods and most (if not all) dairy, and it’s giving up all refined and fake/low-cal sugars.  That seems like a lot of restrictions, and about 3/4 of everything sold in a grocery store.

But if you plan your grocery trips smartly, and you know how to flex your creative chef muscles a little bit, being Paleo can turn a mediocre hamburger and some grilled zucchini into a summertime feast.  You just have to focus on all the tons of extra delicious whole fresh foods you get to heap onto your plate now!  On that note, I think I’m going to go have some Paleo chocolate covered banana for dessert.  😛

Paleo Egg Breakfast Typical

I have always had trouble finding a good breakfast that stuck with me all the way until lunchtime.  Until now.  🙂  On the Standard American Diet (SAD diet lol), the breakfasts I tried were “healthy” cereals, eggs and toast, oatmeal, meat and egg sandwiches, breakfast burritos, etc.  Nothing lasted for more than a couple hours, and by the time lunch finally rolled around, I was nearly always hungry, grumpy, and tired.

Now though, I invest the extra ten minutes each morning to make a warm protein and vegetable breakfast plate that generally looks something like this.  It really does an amazing job of sticking with me!

My Typical Paleo Egg Breakfast Plate (pictured above):

Serves 1

  1. 1 egg
  2. 1 egg white
  3. 1 mushroom, sliced
  4. 1/2 zucchini, quartered
  5. handful of baby spinach
  6. a slice of onion
  7. 1/8 avocado, sliced
  8. a little salsa, depending on how spicy I’m feeling that morning
  9. enough healthy fat (I used coconut oil, but sometimes I use bacon fat too) to coat the bottom of your skillet

Directions: Heat a small skillet (I used a 9″ cast iron) on Medium.  Grease your pan if you need to.  Add the zucchini first – it will take the longest to cook.  Wait a few minutes, flip it a few times, and then add the onion and mushroom slices.  Empty the skillet onto your plate when everything looks done (mushrooms look smaller and more moist, onion is partially translucent, and zucchini is a bit browned and soft all the way through).

Then add enough fat to your pan to coat the bottom again.  Add the egg white, and then the whole egg.  Wait about thirty seconds, then fold up the thinnest side of the egg white.  Sit some baby spinach down there.  Cover the skillet, and wait a few minutes until the spinach starts to wilt.  Then flip the egg over (it should hold together pretty well by now), wait another 30 seconds for an “over easy” egg, and then move the egg and spinach to your plate.

Top with avocado and a little salsa if you’re in the mood, and eat!

paleo grilled stuffed anaheim peppers

Ooooooh yeah baby!  This as an awesome meal that everybody, not just paleo people, will enjoy.  Grilled stuffed Anaheim peppers served over spicy grilled zucchini.  All you need per person for this recipe is two decent sized Anaheim peppers, one zucchini, toppings of choice (guac, salsa, etc), and some leftover meat and spices for the filling.

paleo grilled stuffed anaheim peppers

The filling can be whatever already cooked leftover meat you have laying around – beef, chicken, ground turkey, whatever.  I used chicken.  Add some onions (give the onion a couple minutes in a pan on the stovetop if you don’t want it to be too strong), a can of diced green chilis, chopped jalapenos, chopped mushrooms, and whatever else you have laying around that sounds Mexican-y.  Season with some tomato paste, a splash of coconut milk, oregano, cumin seed, and chili powder.  Just make sure all the ingredients in your filling are already cooked the way you like them, because grilling will only heat them up – not cook them.

paleo grilled stuffed anaheim peppers

Stuffing the peppers is messy.  Really messy.

paleo grilled stuffed anaheim peppers

If you insert at least two toothpicks per pepper at an angle like this, it will do a pretty good job of holding the lids on.

spicy grilled zucchini

I cut each zucchini into four slices.  A little oil, and then more seasoning!  I season the crap out of everything.  Cayenne pepper, cumin, and chili powder on one side, and oregano, salt, garlic powder, and pepper on the other side.

paleo grilled stuffed anaheim peppers

Om nom nom.  Grilling tastes so much better than oven roasting.  When I have a yard someday, I can’t wait to step up into the occasional real campfire cooking too!

paleo grilled stuffed anaheim peppers

Before when I’ve grilled anaheim peppers, I’ve always pre-roasted them and spent a bunch of time peeling the skin off, and then re-grilling them with the stuffing inside.  Well screw that.  This time, I figured I’d just see how bad the skin really was.  And it’s not.  It’s a tiny bit tough, but not nearly as bad as I was expecting.  Entirely edible.  And definitely worth the time saved when you have a full day and not a ton of time for cooking prep.

Paleo Burger Eggplant Bun

While perusing the vegetable aisle at WalMart yesterday, I happened across a freakishly large eggplant.  So big that my first thought actually was, “hamburger bun?”  I browse other Paleo, Low-Carb, and Gluten-Free blogs fairly often, but I have yet to see eggplant buns on burgers.  I figured I’d try it anyways.

Paleo Burger Eggplant Bun

Grilling Burger Eggplant BunsMy raw slices were a little over an inch thick, so they would be able to shrink a little during grilling but still be big enough.  I salted them generously, let them “sweat” for about 20 minutes (the salt draws out the moisture inside the eggplant), rinsed them off, and then gave them a generous sprinkling of chili powder, ground cumin, and oregano.  I used those spices because these were going to be South of the Border Burgers with fresh salsa and guacamole!  The eggplant took a little longer on the grill than the burgers – you just have to keep an eye on the slices.

The only thing I’ll change next time is that I’ll completely peel the slices instead of leaving some strips of skin on.  Those bits were a little chewy.  But otherwise, this worked out amazingly well!  It didn’t get too messy until the last couple of bites, just like a burger on a regular bun would!  Paleo Eggplant Burger Bun Replacement: Success!

Eggplant Hamburger Bun Low Carb Paleo

Update: OMG, forget about making whole burgers with eggplant buns… make sliders!!!  They’re less messy, more fun, and you can use normal size eggplants instead of trying to find monster size ones!  Check out The Evolved Campfire Perfect Paleo Sliders with Eggplant Buns!!!