Author Archives: neko9zen

Eggplant Parmesan Experiment

Standard

Finally got the time to post another recipe 🙂 a new one at that. I have never before cooked eggplant. I actually tried eggplant for the first time a couple of months ago! For some reason it just never appealed to me. I am happy to say I now like eggplant… well anyways back to my eggplant recipe experiment. I starting looking online for recipe ideas… I found a couple but nothing that just really stood out. So I just combined a few and created my own Eggplant Parmesan version. Here it goes!

Ingredients

serving size: 1 (big hearty portion size)

3 eggplant slices
roughly 1/4 – 1/2 cup almond flour
1 egg
1/4lb of meat (I choose ground beef but it would taste awesome with ground sausage too)
1 small can tomato sauce
veggies! (I put a mushroom, small tomato, swish chard leaf, couple of diced slices of zucchini in mine but you can add whatever you got in the frig. I have found that squashes go good with Italian style recipes)
rosemary (fresh or dry)
Italian seasoning
salt
pepper
garlic clove
slice of diced onion
olive oil
coconut oil
goat cheese (optional)

First you want to prep all your veggies. Cut them into small cubes.

Next you want to prep your coating for the eggplant. You will need two bowls. 1 for your dry ingredients and 1 for the egg wash. In the dry ingredients just add your rosemary, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and of course the almond flour. In the egg wash bowl just simply whisk the egg till blended.

Now your going to pat your eggplant slices in the coating mix and then dip it in the egg wash and then pat it back into the coating mix. Your eggplant slices are ready for pan frying!

Before we pan fry our eggplant slices lets start the sauce. In another pan, put a little olive oil in it and saute your veggies. Throw in the garlic and onion first. Let that saute for a couple of minutes then add in your other veggies. After a couple more minutes throw in the meat. Let the meat cook fully then add your tomato sauce.  Reduce heat and simmer. Add some more Italian seasoning, salt and pepper if you like.

Now it’s time to fry those eggplant slices! Put in a couple of heaping tablespoons of

coconut oil another pan. Let it melt then add your slices. I didn’t really time this part. I just used my best judgement. About 8 mins. on each side. Now I added some goat cheese on the top of my slices before I flipped them. This created a cheesy crust when done. This is optional.

All you have left is to put all this goodness together into one big pile of uber goodness. All you do now is stack the eggplant slices and put the meaty sauce mixture in between. Any left over mixture just add around the sides. You’ll definitely be eating it later. Then walla you have a 5 star looking eggplant parmesan and a healthy one too! So enjoy guilt free!

MIA

Standard

okay so lately yes I’ve been neglecting this blog. But I’ve been so busy trying to improve my health and live better that I haven’t had time to get on the computer! I’ve been going to the gym, cooking all my meals, meditating and preparing things for the days to come. The only time I really watch any TV is the 10-20 minutes I spending on the tredmill at the gym! But I feel like I may be getting too carried away with the exercising. I have realized I have a strong deposition to become addicted to exercise but in return I may be hindering myself instead by over doing it and stressing my body. I’ve been listening alot to Sean Croxton, from Underground Wellness, on podcasts. That guy is awesome! Highly recommend him. I know I am all over the place with this blog but I just wanted to check in and let everyone know I was still alive 🙂

Avocado Chocolate Pudding…. wha?

Standard

So I had another consultation with my ND last week. So far, all my syptoms have improved. Better energy, less or nonexistent migraines, clearer skin, etc… the only thing though is my food cravings and hunger issues (which could be a side effect of my hormones going crazy after finally stopping the pill after 8 years, no no not to get preggo but in an effort to get off all medication) She recommended eating half an avocado in the morning and the other half after lunch. There is only one problem… I am not very found of avocado. It helps my hunger though… probably because the taste is a turn off lol but just like many other things I will get accustomed to the taste in time. But there is hope for now! I was doing my yoga yesterday on myyogaonline.com and saw an article about avocado pudding. The thought was unappealing but the picture looked delicious. So this morning I thought, what the hell, what do I have to loose. Well after a few seconds of looking at my concoction I took my first bite. It was pretty delicious! The sweet flavors and chocolate mask the avocado taste. So overall it was a success. Here is my modified version of the recipe.

Paleo Avocado Chocolate Pudding
serving size: 1

1 half avocado
1 tablespoon coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
drizzle of honey
1 tablespoon almond butter
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
dash of stevia

1. Mash up the avocado in a small bowl, make it into a smooth texture
2. Add coconut milk and stir in till smooth
3. Add the remaining ingredients.

Stevia and the honey are the sweeteners. I found that I needed the stevia but you don’t have to add it. Taste and add to your liking. Then enjoy!

 

Summer Squash Boats

Standard

This is my first time ever trying turnips, that I can remember anyways. Both of these are new recipes I am trying out. I usually wait for the weekend to try new things since I have the time.

Summer Squash Boats Recipe

1 zucchini squash
1/2 c. marinara sauce
1/2 yellow squash, diced
1/4 lb. of ground beef or Italian sausage
1/4 sweet onion, chopped
1 large mushroom, chopped
2 tablespoons coconut oil

Keep in mind most of my recipes are for a single to 2 person serving size.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Cut your zucchini in half, long ways, or as teacher like to call it hotdog style. I was a teacher at one point! Next take a spoon and scoop out the zucchini insides but leave some. Don’t scrap all the way to the skin. Place them face down on a cookie sheet and cook in the oven for 15 mins or till slightly tender.

While you zucchini is cooking, heat your skillet to medium high heat. Add your coconut oil. Next add your onions, meat, squash and mushroom. Cook until meat is fully cooked. Then add your marinara sauce. Let it simmer for about 3 – 5 mins.

Your zucchini should be ready by now. Take our your little boats and fill them with the mixture you just cooked on the stove. Then place the boats back into the oven for another 10 mins to let everything simmer and for the zucchini to be completely cooked.

Now take them out of the oven and enjoy! This could be a good way to get children to eat summer squash. I also wanted to add cut up carrots to the mix but was out at the time. Next time I will definitely add that. Also, try to find a marinara sauce that has chucks of tomato. I found that this adds a nice texture.

Recipe was inspired by: Caveman Zucchini Boats

Grains Silent Fight Against Human Consumption

Standard

Grains are great because the USDA food pyramid says so and because they give us fiber! Or are they? Well besides fiber, grains also have anti-nutrients. What are anti-nutrients you ask? Well here is the definition I found that about sums it up,

“Anti nutrients are substances to which we are all exposed through food and water that antagonize nutrients needed for health. Some anti nutrients bind to other nutrients, making them useless. Others tie up enzymes needed in digestion and other body functions. Some cause problems by creating a greater need for certain nutrients. Others cause nutrients to be excreted more rapidly from the body. In our world of high technology, the level of anti nutrients to which we are exposed is surprisingly high. Many of the anti nutrients have either a direct or indirect effect on immune function. Anything you can do to reduce exposure to anti nutrients will be helpful in preventing recurrent illness. “

Whoa, whoa, that is in grains? Turns out so! But why are they there you ask? 2 words… Defense Mechanism. I know that this sounds funny but hear me out. What do all living things want to do the most? Thrive, survive and reproduce. From what I remember from biology in high school and college, grains are plants… plants are living things. In order to survive, thrive and reproduce, living things develop defense mechanism to survive. Anti nutrients are plants’ defense mechanisms.

So what does this mean to humans when they consume anti-nutrients?

So there are 3 harmful anti-nutrients in grains – letchins, gluten and phytates. Each one has their own ways they fight back when consumed by humans.

Letchins – “Lectins are not broken down in the digestive process and bind to receptors in the intestine, allowing them and other food particles to leech into your bloodstream. Nothing like pre-digested food circulating the blood stream! The body views these lectins and the food they bring with them as dangerous invaders and initiates an immune response to get rid of them. This immune response to particles of common foods explains the allergy creating potential of grains.”

Gluten – Ahh now this sounds familiar huh? “Gluten, found in wheat, rye, and barley, is a composite of the proteins gliadin and glutenin. Gluten and similar grain-based proteins work to break down the microvilli in your small intestine, eventually letting particles of your food leech into your blood stream (a lovely term called “leaky gut syndrome”) causing allergies, digestive disturbances or autoimmune problems. And to think, most Americans eat this stuff on a daily basis.”

Phytates -If that was bad enough here is one more to add to gains defense mechanisms. “Phytates make minerals bio-unavailable(so much for all those healthy vitamins and minerals we need from whole grains!)” This includes calcium, can you say osteoporosis?

Yes, I know this is a-lot to take in and really goes against everything we grew up knowing about grains but really think about this. We have a rising epidemic of obesity, cancer and other diseases. Obviously we need to take a step back and really think about what we are fueling our bodies with. Ultimately, you have control over what you eat. Don’t just believe everything you hear. Find out for yourself and make an educated decision. You only get one body, make sure you treat it right.

On a personal note, I’ve been off grains for 2 months now… okay on occasion I’ll have a beer or some chips and salsa but grains are by no means a part of my daily intake of food. As a result, so far my acne has cleared, my oily skin is under control, my headaches are almost non existent, my fatigue has diminished and my moods have improved. During the past 2 months I have also been taking supplements to support my kidneys and adrenal glands but without a well balanced diet I don’t see how that could of improved all my syptoms. If you are not feeling your best, I challenge you to limit your grain intake.

I really recommend reading the articles below for a better understanding of my blog topic. This post just scratched the surface. There are books and tons of articles just on grain consumption and it’s effects on our bodies.

Articles used to write this blog post and for further information:
Why are Grains Unhealthy – Mark’s Daily Apple
How Grains Are Killing You Slowly – Wellness Mama

Making the best of leftovers – homemade salad dressing

Standard

Last night we house sitted for my parents while they went out of town. For a late dinner we decided to BBQ. Luckily there was leftovers, I love leftovers.  Sometimes the best thing to do with leftovers is to put it on a salad… so I’ve learned. One of my favorite leftover salads is bbq leftover salad. Grilled veggies, fajitas and sausage make for a delicious salad topper. One thing I always put on my salads is a homemade salad dressing. It takes literally minutes to make and is a great healthy alternative to store bought salad dressing.

Here is my easy salad dressing recipe:

2 big tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 half of a lemon squeezed
sea salt
pepper
rosemary
basil
garlic
thyme

Add all ingredients in a small cup, stir and pour over your salad. You can put whatever seasonings you like. The main thing is to make sure it is one part olive oil and one part lemon juice. The rest is optional. Another salad dressing I like to make is one part olive oil one part raspberry vinegar. It’s perfect for a cranberry and walnut salad with grilled chicken. The goal is to be creative with your salads or you will get bored with them fast.

Acorn Squash Antioxidant Porridge

Standard

It’s the weekend! Regardless that I have been off for most of the week, I am still happy it’s the weekend. This past week I went to a beautiful weddings. Congrats to Jorrel and Alisha. So though I had a great time this week with friends… the long nights and drinking really wore me down. So yesterday I came home and did some chakra yoga and meditation and this morning I make a great breakfast packed with antioxidants to help my body recover from all the toxins and not so good for me food I ate.

<—————————-

Recipe

1 half of an acorn squash
1 tablespoon coconut oil

2 tablespoons coconut milk (preferably vanilla flavor)
1 tablespoon almond butter
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon raw honey
1 tablespoon chai seeds
1 tablespoon dried goji berries
1 handful of fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 400. Take you acorn and scoop out all your seeds. Next spread the tablespoon of coconut oil on it. Place face down on a baking sheet and bake in the oven until tender. Mine took about 20 mins.

After your acorn is cooked till tender (you can test this by poking it with a fork) take out of the oven and scoop out all the insides into a bowl. Mash the acorn meat till it reaches a nice smooth consistency. Add the 2 tablespoons of coconut milk. Then the tablespoon of almond butter and mixed till blended.

Next add the cinnamon, vanilla extract, honey and goji berries. Stir well. Top with blueberries and chai seeds. Then savor and enjoy 🙂

———————–>

Don’t feel like you have to have every ingredient in order to do this. The main thing that is needed is the acorn meat… once you have that add what you want! Make it your own porridge. Other ideas of things you can add is a mashed banana, dried blueberries, dried cranberries, dried cherries, fresh fruit, maple syrup, coconut crystals, shredded coconut, nuts, natural jams, etc. One thing I have learned with my new found love for paleo foods is that you have to experiment. It helps you to not get bored with the foods you can eat. When you don’t eat anything processed that really limited your ingredients when you go to the grocery store. We have become accustomed to easy and available but I have found joy and peace in cooking foods I know that are good for me. Now time to go workout with my new kettlebell! 🙂 Hope everyone has a great weekend! Remember to do something for yourself this weekend! The weekend is the best time to rejuvenate and re-energize for the week… so how are you going to do that this weekend?

Recipe was inspired by: Paleo Table