breaking free from six decades of tyranny

Posts tagged ‘paleo’

Chicken Kale Soup

I threw some favorite ingredients together … that happened to work well for MyBrattyTasteBuds tonight!

Chicken Kale Soup

ChickenKaleSoup

(Yesterday, I roasted an organic chicken. This recipe uses the leftovers from that.)

Place in crock pot and cook for 6 hours:

1 chicken carcass (from organic roasted chicken)
cooking liquid from the roasted chicken, plus 8 cups water
1 onion
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. turmeric

Remove bones, and strain mixture, leaving broth in large pot.

Add, bring to boil, turn down heat and simmer for about 20-30 minutes:
4-6 small golden beets, peeled and cut into chunks
2 tsp. turmeric
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 tsp. ginger root, grated (or Dorot frozen ginger)
1 tsp. sea salt

Add two chicken breasts, cut into chunks. Cook for about 15 minutes.

Add 2 cups fresh or frozen kale and cook until soft.

Enjoy!

 

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Worry-Free Holiday Eating

This is an epic holiday season for me. Epic.

For 60 years, I have dreaded the holiday season while salivating uncontrollably. MyBrattyTasteBuds would be screaming “Bring It On!” while my Brain was cowering in the corner of the kitchen in the fetal position, not an ounce of fight left in it.

My non-Paleo signature treat

My non-Paleo signature treat

My signature holiday goodie was a recipe a friend shared with me years ago that was actually on the back of a chocolate chip bag. Amazingly, no one in my circle of friends and family ever saw that recipe, so it gradually became Mine. If someone would have handed me a plate of these More Delicious Than Snickers bars and I ate one or two, Brain would have been OK. But BrattyTasteBuds would insist on making double recipes, cutting off the ragged sides to make perfect bars, and eating said ragged edges so thoroughly no one ever knew they existed. There are a lot of ragged sides on my double recipes.

Back to the Epic Nature of this holiday season. MyBrattyTasteBuds and my Brain are so very happy together now that there is no war. There are no little battles. There is true joy and peace in this household. There are some Paleo goodies around, and they are so satisfying that BrattyTasteBuds politely enjoy a reasonable amount, and then take a long nap. Brain is free to think about more important things than taming taste buds.

Paleo Treats

Paleo Treats made by my daughter. Full of healthy fats and protein!

It is the most amazing thing to be craving-free during the holiday season. It is the most amazing thing to be guilt-free at this time of the year. Amazing. And Epic.

(Recipes for Paleo Treats are easily found online!)

Cooking … and Cooking update …

That soup. The one from Everyday Paleo website I said I was going to make? Here’s my version:

Creamy Chicken Soup

And it is delicious. I followed her recipe, but added two handfuls of fresh spinach, 2 carrots and about a tablespoon of onion.

Cooking … and cooking …

Kitchens and I … definitely a love/hate thing. LOVE successful meals, hate the cleanup. HATE experiments that fail, hate the cleanup. LOVE that my husband cleans up as a thank you for all meals, successful or not … at least most of the time!

Full disclosure time: I’m getting a little tired of all the cooking that Paleo entails. I think I’ve hit a wall of sorts. I know I will pass through the wall and come out into the sunshine again, but let’s fact it. I’m heading into my least favorite months … winter … where lots of cooking is expected … and that doesn’t exactly excite me.

Except for soups. I LOVE soups. And I have a crock pot and a Vitamix. Haven’t made a Vitamix soup yet, but eager to give that a try. Should be quick, don’t you think?

But today, I found a recipe on the Everyday Paleo website I’m going to try. Crock pot, chicken, coconut milk and spices.

Everyday Paleo Chicken Tomato Soup

 

Another Foodie Success

I HATED Chemistry. Hated it in high school, barely squeaking by with a low C. Hated it when I tried it again in college. Dropped the course and never looked back.

Come to find out, cooking is basically chemistry. You have all these different elements with unique properties … you make mixtures out of them … you heat them up or cool them down … and hope they end up edible.

So, I have always pretty much hated cooking. Elements don’t mix quite right for me, or I put weird combinations together, or I heat too much or too long, or I don’t cool enough or at the right time, or I just end up with a big mess.

Thank goodness all my children are better cooks than I ever was. Probably figured with a little effort, they could surpass my efforts easily … and they were right!

HOWEVER … Thanks to my children and some wonderful Paleo cookbooks and blogs, I have been experimenting more and enjoying more success with chemistry … er, cooking.

So before I forget tonight’s success story, I need to record it!

Yam Hash Browns

Three C’s and a G Yam Browns
Makes 1 serving

1 T. coconut oil
1 T. grass-fed butter or ghee
1 small yam (the one with orange inside), grated
¼ tsp. coarse ground sea salt
¼ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. coriander
¼ tsp. curry powder
¼ tsp. ginger
1 T. almond milk

Melt oils in a non-stick skillet. Add grated yam, salt and spices. Let brown on one side, then stir and flip to brown the other side. Add almond milk at the end and gently stir to blend.

Maybe There Is a Foodie Inside of Me After All

MyBrattyTasteBuds would argue they have always been Foodies, because they would eat anything that tickled their little fancies. They would argue they have always loved food.

And they would have a point. But I’m going with a different definition of Foodie. I’m thinking of a person who likes to know where their food comes from before shoving it in the mouth. Who likes to know how it has been prepared before swallowing. Who enjoys the taste so much that smaller amounts satisfy the stomach. Who never feels guilty about eating.

And that would definitely NOT have been me during the reign of MyBrattyTasteBuds. Ninety-five percent of my meals and snacks were guilt-inducing. They were full of sugar and bad fats, or processed beyond recognition, or enormous.

In honor of this change of status, I finally bought this:

Mortar and Pestle Box

 … And used it to make a delicious spice blend from the awesome book by Diane Sanfilippo, Practical Paleo:

Mortar and Pestle with Spice Blend

… Which I used on a whole roasted chicken, again from Practical Paleo.

I feel very much in touch with ancestors of long, long ago who developed this tool to “process” food in new ways, adding enjoyment to what most likely was a pretty mundane existence. It has definitely spiced up MyBrattyTasteBuds’ lives.

Satisfaction. Guaranteed. Part 2

In Satisfaction Guaranteed Part 1, I talked about my feelings and blood work numbers before and after my Paleo eating change. I showed my BrattyTasteBud Training Regimen (Short Version):

More Water
More Veggies
More Good fats
More quality protein
Very little grains
Little dairy
Little sugar
Unsweetened black coffee as treat

I gave details about drinking more water and eating more veggies. Now it’s on to the rest of the Training Plan.

Examples of healthy fats and oils

  1. Fats. The Worst Word in the Diet Dictionary, right? We’ve been told for so long that fat is bad that we don’t even question it anymore. We’ve replaced fats in our diet with so many other substitutes that our bodies are totally starved for the benefits of fats. Not convinced? There is much solid information about the need for good fats in our diet. Here’s a place to start: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andrew-weil-md/healthy-eating_b_629422.html. I also love www.marksdailyapple.com for great information about fats. I have found that eating reasonable amounts of good fats (avocado, nuts, nut oils, coconut oil, ghee) is self-limiting. A dollop here, a spoonful there (while cooking, snacking or in a meal) makes MyBrattyTasteBuds very happy. My body is quite satisfied for longer periods as it uses this fuel it’s been designed to burn. SATISFACTION GUARANTEED.
  2. Protein eaten as close to its natural state makes MyBuds swoon. Organic eggs, grass-fed beef, minimally processed chicken and turkey, organic raw nuts, nut butters and nut milks are all featured in my meals. I found that eating roasted nuts, even unsalted ones, triggered fist-to-mouth overeating, a clear signal for me that something was off. When I stick to the least-tampered-with choices … SATISFACTION GUARANTEED.
  3. Grains used to be my drug of choice. I do not say that lightly. MyBrattyTasteBuds led me into many a dark alley lined with donut shops, massive cinnamon rolls, pecan pies, light and fluffy breads, rich cakes, fresh summer corn on the cob, oatmeal, chewy artisan breads … and I indulged at will. MyBrattyTasteBuds fought me on this one, big time. Every time I contemplated eliminating grains, they would begin to chant: “You’ll never be able to do it!” If I’m perfectly honest, they are right to a degree. I still eat one piece of sprouted grain bread a day to keep my grain monsters at bay. However, my body has been very clear that blood-sugar spikers such as white bread and kettle corn bring on massive migraines. I would not have discovered the cause of my migraines had I not taken out the grains, and then indulged in one, only to get slammed with the headache. Very soon, I am going to experiment with getting rid of that last piece of daily grain. We will see if I am satisfied!
  4. Dairy has never been high on my list of must-haves … except for ice cream … and that leads right into sugar. MyBrattyTasteBuds always preferred their sugar wrapped in some kind of bread, preferably deep-fried or laden with unhealthy fats. Ice cream on the side used to be perfectly acceptable. I put dairy and sugar reduction at the bottom of my Training Plan because they were the easiest to cut. If I was consistent with water, veggies, good fats and high-quality protein, I didn’t even think about dairy and sugary foods. (There is a very nice coconut-based frozen “ice cream” that MyBuds love.) SATISFACTION GUARANTEED.
  5. Coffee. Full of anti-oxidants. I have never wanted anything in my coffee but the good old bean and water. I nurse four espresso shots over 24 to 36 hours and don’t give it much thought. The smell of coffee brings strong, positive emotional responses for me. If there is a downside to coffee, the emotional boost I get outweighs it. SATISFACTION GUARANTEED.

If you have BrattyTasteBuds and decide to give any of my Training Plan a try, let me know. I would love to hear your questions, experiences, challenges and successes!

Summer Paleo Cobbler

Farmer’s Markets are the BEST! I scoped out the Boise (Idaho) Saturday Market this week with my daughter and two of her daughters. Three-generational outings make my heart smile!

Boise has a strong population of refugees. Many hard-working men, women and children lovingly nurture mini-farms as part of the Global Gardens program. We stopped at one of their stands and bought green beans and one bunch of a leafy African green (I can’t remember their name, but it started with an “m”. Let me know if YOU know what they are called and I’ll update this post.)

It was Berry Day at the Market. I picked up blackberries and boysenberries to share with my 92-year-old berry-lovin’ mother-in-law. (She loved them!)

In the evening I used them to make my No-Bake Paleo “Cobbler”.

Berry Cobbler

Coconut Milk, Agave Nectar, Go Raw Ginger Cookies

Making this Cobbler involves placing berries, coconut milk, cinnamon, and a squirt of agave nectar (depending on sweetness of berries) in a bowl, and crumbling the cookies on top. That’s it.

Summer Yummer, for sure!

A Bite Will Do It

My wonderful dietician has given me lots of hints …. all of which have truly pleased MyBrattyTasteBuds. One that I’ve been experimenting with is something MBTBs and I are calling BiteSmall.

We just concocted and consumed this BiteSmall:

banana bread with cashew butter

It’s half a slice of Paleo Banana Bread with about a teaspoon of cashew butter, rolled in a bit of cinnamon/palm sugar.

I discovered if I ate a whole slice of the banana bread, I experienced heartburn. I stayed away from the bread for a few days, and the heartburn disappeared.

So far, no heartburn with this BiteSmall! TasteBuds smiling as I write!

Addiction and Why Paleo People Don’t Eat Wheat

Last year, I mentioned a fact about my appetite to several people I’ve known all my life. These people have never had a weight problem. One belongs to an older generation, so she grew up on real homemade foods, and is an excellent cook. She does not eliminate any foods from her diet, but eats responsibly. The other is my age and has been vegan for many years.

I mentioned that no matter how much I ate, I never felt full. And along with that, I never really felt hungry. My appetite-o-stat was non-functional. I thought they would nod and say, “Yeah, me too.” I thought it was normal.

Nope. They looked very puzzled. Neither had any idea what I was talking about.

Those two moments started me on my quest to understand what was going on with me. I knew my weight fluctuations weren’t good for me, but I had been around lots of people who were on the same roller coaster as I was … hence, the feeling that there was something normal about it.

After reading about Wheat Belly I am wondering if MyBrattyTasteBuds were victims of a wheat addiction.

I did love bread. Breads. All kinds. One piece easily led to another. Sandwiched between episodes of bread eating was dessert eating. Sweet breads were my special delight. I won’t list them here because that would be kind of like remembering them in a worshipful way, which takes me to a dark place.

So perhaps MyBrattyTasteBuds didn’t really have a chance. Or really a choice. Once the wheat hit the system, it was BingeTime.

Dr. William Davis, in “Wheat Belly”: “For some people, wheat is addictive. And, in some people, it is addictive to the point of obsession… Understanding that wheat, specifically exorphins from gluten, have the potential to generate euphoria, addictive behavior, and appetite stimulation means that we have a potential means of weight control: Lose the wheat, lose the weight.” (page. 44).

[There is a lot more information about properties of wheat that apparently wreak havoc on our bodies in Dr. Davis’ book. On his blog, he makes this disclaimer: “Nothing here should be construed as medical advice, but only topics for further discussion with your doctor.”]

I am not totally wheat free, but I have cut dramatically down on wheat products. Like last night when cooking spaghetti for the grandkids, I taste tested a strand for done-ness. And I used a corner of a piece of bread to soak up some of the Paleo spaghetti sauce. But neither of those activities triggered a binge or even the desire for one. I admit to one piece of Ezekiel bread a day, but no binge trigger there either.

One payoff of eating Paleo for me? For the first time in my life, my appetite-o-stat is working. It feels AMAZING to feel hunger, eat the right amount of the right foods, and feel satiated afterwards. Understand, this is a new feeling for me.

And I’m *almost* a Paleo person who doesn’t eat wheat. Now I have a better idea why Paleo people don’t eat wheat.

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