Mmmmmm, a properly roasted pork tenderloin is a wonderful thing to behold. For most of my life, the pork I ate was cooked TO DEATH because of fears about parasites (which is understandable) but it made me think I hated pork and that it was always bone dry, bland, and tough. Nope! It can be amazingly flavorful, tender and juicy if seasoned adequately and cooked properly. Here is how I did it! First, choose high quality meat. Here are several companies I like (I am not sponsored and do not get paid for mentioning them, I just like them a lot) Belcampo Meat Co, Autonomy Farms, Primal Pastures, Butcher Box, Bavette Meat and Provisions, Culture Club 101, , or other local farms and producers in your area-search what is available in your area by clicking here. Ok, now onto recipe stuff!Read More
Do you ever just need a taste of childhood? I do, and crispy chicken tenders were one of my favorite things to eat fresh out of the oven and dipped in a spicy barbecue sauce! The ones we would eat would always come out of a big bag in our freezer and had tons of less than healthy ingredients in them=( This recipe is delicious, crunchy, flavorful, clean eating friendly and a little spicy! I hope you enjoy them!Read More
These crispy, chewy, spicy, smokey, yummy potato wedges are a standard in our house! They are simple to make and turn out great every time. Get some clean organic ketchup or ranch and dip away. I hope you enjoy theme as much as we do!Read More
Here is a fun summery dish that is a great way to use the summer squash that is so bountiful at our farmers markets right now. My garden is BURSTING with pattypan squash so that is the kind used plus a few small zucchinis since I have a few growing back there too! I think the thinker skin of the pattypan slash works great for this type of recipe because they don't get as mushy as zucchini but of course feel free to use your favorite summer squash that is in season right now. I found that cutting the seeds out of some of the bigger squash and only using the pieces that have the squash skin attached is best because the gratin gets less mushy and you see all of the pretty colors from the different squash you used. Food should look good too! I hope you enjoy this dish as much as my husband and I did last night with a juicy grilled pork chop!
Summer Squash Gratin
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil/ghee/high quality bacon fat
1 large red onion, finely chopped
6 large garlic cloves, finely minced
3 pounds organic summer squash, cut in 1/2-inch dice, removing the center seeds if the squash is big.
1 medium organic red pepper, cut in 1/4-inch dice
About 2 teaspoons of sea salt, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
*Optional 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
*Optional 6 tablespoons of freshly grated cheese such as Pecorino Romano, if dairy is well tolerated.
Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet such as a cast iron skillet over medium heat and add the onion and a good pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until tender, about 5 minutes.
Then add the garlic and summer squash and a teaspoon of salt and turn up the heat to high to give the squash some lovely color. Sauté until just softened- about 7 minutes (don't over cook the squash or it will get mushy and the will be sad!).
The add the chopped red pepper, and another pinch of sea salt and cook for a couple more minutes until the pepper is tender. Add freshly ground black pepper, taste and adjust salt to your liking. If you are going to be using the cheese remember that it is salty so don't add too much salt at this step! Stir in the parsley and remove from the heat.
*If you tolerate dairy, top with a generous fresh grating of raw Pecorino Romano (sheep's milk cheese) and stick into your broiler for a minute or two to make a nice cheesy crust. Serve as a side dish, or use as a filling for a vegetable tart or frittata.
My husband and I went on a little camping adventure a few months back and we wanted to have a special dinner on our last night away and there is just nothing better than a simple grilled steak and veggies! It is super easy to make and the flavor of food cooked over a real wood fire can't be beat! Take good care to buy a high quality 100% grass fed organic steak and cook it with care to preserve those healthful fats and high quality protein! Click here for a link to an article I was referenced in that shares this recipe and has a TON of great info and resources about grass fed meat and where to find it!!
Bring meat to room temperature at least 30 minutes to an hour before grilling. Season the meat with salt and pepper about 30 minutes before it goes on the grill Preheat a grill (I prefer natural charcoal or hardwood briquettes) to medium-high heat.
Lay the meat on the hot grill and let it sit there for 2-3 minutes, depending on the exact temperature of your grill. We like our meat medium rare but if you want it cooked more just leave it on longer. As soon as it is seared and browned and lifts easily off of the grill grates, flip the meat on the other side and let it finish cooking for another 1-2 minutes.
Remove from the grill, place it on a platter or cutting board, tent the meat with foil, and let rest for 10-15 minutes. This rest time helps the delicious juices redistribute throughout the meat and creates a tremendously juicy and tender steak.
While the meat rests, grill your veggies: Drizzle the vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill until tender and lightly charred, about 4-5 minutes. Cutting against the grain, slice the meat into portions and serve with the grilled asparagus and green onions and you could even spoon my famous Chimichurri Sauce over the top to really make the flavors pop!
There is no denying it, buying the “right” foods can be complicated, and with all of the mixed messages out there about good nutrition it can be down right confusing, frustrating, and discouraging. Navigating the grocery store, supermarket, or farmers market can go from being a fun way to dream up food ideas for the week to a guilt ridden chore, and that makes me sad! I have five food questions that I keep in the back of my mind when I go shopping that steer me towards certain foods and away from others and they have nothing to do with calories. These questions steer me towards real food that is good for my body, the environment, the economy, and my conscience. I hope they help you pick foods that you believe in and I am providing links to my favorite companies (no, I am not a affiliate of these companies and I do not get paid to write about them; I simply want to share products, companies, and resources that I love and use). So here you go! Part 2 of my 5 Food Questions series:
Where did this come from?
Imagine Look at where your food comes from. If it’s produce, did it come from a farm nearby, Peru, China or Mexico? Where a food is produced can tell you a lot about it's quality and it's environmental footprint. Produce that has to be shipped from far away is often picked unripe so it will not spoil before it arrives to your grocery store and that means that much of the vitamins and minerals that should be in the food are not able to fully develop. It really is best to buy produce that is in season and grown as close to you as possible for both flavor, nutrition, and to support the farmers near you that are trying to grow food the right way. It has also been shown that standards for imported organic food is not as strict as when grown in the United States and the farms that they are grown on are sometimes only evaluated once per year. Organic imports from China are steadily on the rise but the level of environmental pollution and lack of government enforcement make those products often heavily contaminated. Here is a great article by Dr. Axe that goes into more detail on the problems with the organic imports from China and the even larger issue of corporate influence on our National Organic Program here in the U.S. Please do your best to buy US and locally grown organic produce from people you can actually talk to about the food you are going to be eating.
Meat is another area of food production where it is important to ask where it came from as There has been a grass fed meat boom in the last few years that has resulted in many large organic meat companies moving their large farms to foreign countries and this practice is responsible for MASSIVE destruction of natural farmland and rainforest habitats. If you look on the back of packages of organic meats, their country of origin may at times be up to three different countries, which was my experience when I was shopping at Trader Joe's recently. Again, buying meat that is organic is much better than conventional so please choose it, but being mindful about where that meat came from and asking grocery stores to carry meat that is from the US is an empowered and educated way to shop. Here is a fantastic article that goes into much deeper detail about the foreign Grass Fed Meat industry if you would like to know more: click here.
Dr. Bronners organic coconut oil is a great example about how important it is to know where something comes from. I only by Dr Bronners Organic Cold Pressed Coconut Oil because I truly love what that company stands for. The organization they have started is called Serendipol and it is changing the way farmers grow coconuts so that it is more environmentally sustainable and they are providing job training and fair wages to the people in the region. Here is a link to a short video about Serendipol. The story of Serendipol is a great example of the questions that have been discussed already, as well as the next three that are coming up so we will discuss it further as we go along.
I know we cannot be perfect in every food choice but taking a few seconds to make a more mindful selection will benefit your body, improve the experience of tasting your food, and help the people who make the good food to be able to continue to do what they do. Be courageous and ask questions. The next question in the series is: How does this impact the environment? Keep an eye out for it!
There is no denying it, buying the “right” foods can be complicated, and with all of the mixed messages out there about good nutrition it can be down right confusing, frustrating, and discouraging. Navigating the grocery store, supermarket, or farmers market can go from being a fun way to dream up food ideas for the week to a guilt ridden chore, and that makes me sad! I have five food questions that I keep in the back of my mind when I go shopping that steer me towards certain foods and away from others and they have nothing to do with calories. These questions steer me towards real food that is good for my body, the environment, the economy, and my conscience. I hope they help you pick foods that you believe in and I am providing links to my favorite companies (no, I am not a affiliate of these companies and I do not get paid to write about them; I simply want to share products, companies, and resources that I love and use). So here you go! Part 1 of my 5 Food Questions series:Read More
I love fingerling potatoes! They are tiny potatoes with a delicious dense bite and creamy texture. They cook fast in the boiling salted water but you could boil the potatoes the night before you want to serve this dish and just chop them up in the morning and follow the rest of the directions I wrote below (that is what I did!). Make these this weekend with your best buds over a cuppa jo and some eggs!Read More
I love vegetable dishes that are very simple and highlight the great flavors of just a couple of ingredients. This recipe has the clean crisp flavor of crunchy broccoli and the toasty savory flavor of sesame oil. It took me 15 minutes to get this from the fridge to my plate which I know is a big win for getting good food on the table at the end of the day! Vegetables are wonderful and really should be eaten with every meal if you can. If you have trouble with digestion try lightly cooking your vegetables by either steaming, baking, or sautéing them in a little oil, broth or water so they are cooked but still tender and firm. I didn’t think I liked a lot of veggies growing up but what I really didn’t like was over cooked vegetables. Try this dish and tell me what you think in the comments below!Read More
We have been having some really warm weather here in Los Angeles and it has taken me from warm soup and chili mode back into cool crunchy salad mode practically overnight. I have always wanted to make the salad dressing that you get at Japanese restaurants on top of iceberg lettuce and carrots and dang it I think I nailed it. This dressing is full of fresh organic ginger, carrots, scallions, vinegar and clean oils so you can feel good about enjoying it. It is great on romaine lettuce, baby spinach, sliced red cabbage, and carrots. It tried it on kale and I didn’t like it so much..not sure why. Of course you can try iceberg but there is pretty much no nutritional value in that kind of lettuce so stick with romaine! Enjoy.Read More
We are a chili loving family over here! This is my favorite so far because it isn’t too spicy but has tons of depth of flavor from the baked sweet potatoes, spices, herbs, and vegetables. I bought 2 pounds of grass fed ground beef from our favorite meat shop, Bel Campo Meat Co and this was a perfect way to enjoy it for a few days on top of cauliflower rice, plain rice, with corn chips and topped with fresh chilies, cilantro, freshly squeezed lime juice, or cheddar cheese if you eat dairy. I hope you like it as much as we do!!Read More
I love Salmon! I love the flavor of the beautiful pink/orange flesh, how nutritious it is, and how versatile it is! A family member shared some salmon with me that was literally caught by a friend of hers in Alaska and sent down to her! It is the best salmon I have ever tasted. The recipe for the Cajun rub is just enough for the 9oz piece I cooked today. Fish is one of those things I like to eat freshly cooked and don’t really care for as leftovers so I don’t cook a big batch but if you like it make a bigger piece and enjoy! Double or triple the rub recipe based on the size of your fish filet.Read More
This is a delicious asian inspired side dish that took me 10 minutes to make. Broccolini is not young broccoli, it is a cross between tender, leafy chinese broccoli and traditional american broccoli and has a sweet flavor that reminds me of asparagus a little bit. It is delicious and full of vitamin C, folate, iron, and calcium. Enjoy it with this simple flavorful mixture of garlic, fresh ginger, coconut aminos, sesame oil, salt, pepper, and a touch of honey.Read More
I made this soup to celebrate a friend’s birthday and it was a huge hit! It’s very warming, savory, and delicious. Perfect for this stormy weather we have been having! My husband, Shane, made a fresh loaf of Irish soda bread to go along with it and it was lovely. I had made a large batch of bone broth a month earlier (which I will share with you soon!) so I used that and it made a huge difference in the flavor. If you are able, save the bones from the food you make, stick them in a freezer bag or wrap them in plastic wrap tightly, and every time you have collected a few pound of bones you can make bone broth too!Read More
Parsnips are one of my favorite vegetables and I load up on them in the fall because I simply can't get enough of them! They look like a giant white carrot and have a flavor that is a cross between a sweet carrot, a peppery turnip, and an earthy potato. Yum!! They have a pretty gnarly woody core that should be cut out before cooking because it doesn't soften up as it cooks. Here is a great video on How to Core a Parsnip . Don't skip that step otherwise you will be chewing on these roasted beauties for days, especially if your parsnips are big. These are simply roasted with olive oil and honey and are a perfect lightly sweet side dish to go on your fall table. Enjoy!Read More
This amazing sweet potato dish is based on Diane Sanfilippo's book Practical Paleo and it is a staple in our house. My recipe scales it up so it can feed 8-10 people (or 3-4 with lots of leftovers). I used bacon fat today because I made bacon for breakfast and had a few tablespoons ready to go but coconut oil, ghee, avocado oil, or olive oil would work well. The sweetness and aroma from the sweet potatoes and cinnamon paired with the savoriness of the garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and spice from the pepper make it a really delicious dish. If you want even more spice add 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne. I usually do but since this is a Thanksgiving Side Dish Series I kept it more crowd and kid friendly.
Here are the ingredients!Read More
Here is another simple and delicious side dish that contains just 5 ingredients! The sage brings this warm sweet flavor and the golden cubes of butternut squash practically melt in your mouth. You can cube your butternut squash a day or 2 in advance and keep it in the refrigerator so there is less work on the big day.Read More
I love the flavors of fresh green beans and golden shallots in this simple dish! Be careful not to over cook the green beans or burn the shallots, there’s a fine line between golden brown and burned…. You can use 5 tablespoons of grass fed butter, ghee, avocado oil, olive oil, or even reserved bacon fat! The photo below shows Kerrygold butter, Pure Indian Foods Ghee, and Avocado Oil since that is what I used (3 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of avocado oil). Use a good quality fat and leave margarine, canola, and corn oil out of your kitchen!Read More
Our favorite holiday is just around the corner and I wanted to share some of my favorite recipes for my favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal.... THE SIDE DISHES!! I love a good roasted turkey and I really don't have it any other time of year so I definitely grab a slice or two of meat but I delight in combing the different casseroles, plates, pans, and gratins full of different stuffings, veggies, relishes, root vegetables, and more. I get a little bit of everything and taste, combine, and enjoy all of the different flavors that go into a full Thanksgiving table.Read More
This is a salad I started making at least 7 years ago back when Trader Joes’s had the vacuum packed precooked black beluga lentils…. I miss those days! They were so easy! We went to a wonderful market named Cookbook in Echo Park this week which is where I found these organic American grown Black Beluga Lentils so I bought a few bags! The combination of finely chopped vegetables, herbs, tender lentils, and flavorful dressing is very refreshing and delicious. If you have trouble digesting beans and legumes read this recipe in detail regarding preparation and be sure to read the Health Tip at the bottom. I link to several helpful articles that talk about legumes, digestion, and food combining that will help you understand digestion and the effects of specific foods on the digestive system.Read More