In my pursuit to cut out grains and add lots of veggies, I’ve started subbing one for the other. Roasted veggies are a fabulous base for dishes like Tikka Masala, a fabulous topping for salads to make them warm and savory, and a fabulous side to any protein dish. They fill you up and don’t leave you feeling sluggish. Continue reading
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I DON’T LIKE FISH. I found one recipe that I loved because it made it taste like chicken (Sweet Teryaki Salmon) but every one I’ve tried since then is so salty … and the texture, yuck.
Happy Thursday to you all! It’s almost the weekend and I’m excited about it. This last couple months has been absolutely crazy at work. It’s really wonderful to see so many people starting their path to health but I’m a little glad that it’s starting to taper now. I was starting to miss my relaxation (and cooking) time. So here is a great recipe directly from my Momma’s kitchen.
My mom is a fabulous cook. She claims to hate it but how can you hate something you’re so good at?? I think she gets tired of cooking every single night (who wouldn’t) but goodness knows we would have been a MUCH less healthy family without her daily meals.
She is one of those people who can whip up a meal when the fridge and pantry are completely empty. If friends stop by for a chat, she has the most creative and delicious appetizers on the table within 5 minutes. She has mastered the art of feeding AND socializing with people. Those who have tried it know how hard that can be.
She taught me this recipe before I left for college and it quickly became my signature dish. She uses mashed potatoes from the box (understandable with 4 kids and no time) but I love mashing potatoes. They taste better and I get to let out my pent-up aggression on them. So I turned to my friend Alex for some further input. She is also an amazing chef and trained in the art of food.
So here is my combination from the two lovely ladies. My mom’s was quicker but slightly healthier and Alex’s was a little more time-consuming but richer and more savory.
Mom’s Shepherds Pie
Note: This is a delicious dish but if you’re trying to lose weight, do not eat it for dinner. You don’t want the potatoes sitting in your stomach all night. Unless you use the energy, it will turn into fat.
- 5 medium potatoes
- 1 cup organic butter
- 1 cup milk (unsweetened almond, coconut, whatever…)
- 1.5 lbs ground turkey
- 2 Tbsp high heat oil (like coconut or grape seed)
- 1 onion
- 3 carrots
- 1 zucchini
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 cup gravy (I use Bisto but it contains trace gluten so be careful)
- salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to its lowest setting.
- Chop potatoes into small pieces. Boil them in a large pot of water until soft when stabbed with a fork.
- While they’re boiling, chop the onion, carrots, and zucchini.
- Drain the potatoes and mix in a large bowl with butter and milk. Mash them all up! Set aside.
- In a large pot (yes a large pot) sauté the onions, carrots, and minced garlic on medium heat. Cook until onion is transparent, about 5 minutes.
- Add turkey and zucchini to the skillet. Cook for 5 minutes then add gravy. Continue to cook until meat is browned.
- Spread out the turkey mixture evenly in the pot then layer the potatoes on top.
- Heat in the oven for 5 minutes to let juices mix.
I hope you’re all having wonderful days. Love and a grin. – Ash
Sweet potato fries. I’ve only had them once or twice in restaurants but I ALWAYS love them. So when I saw this post from Snack Girl, I figured I’d try it. Holy Bajolies these things are good. I did it a tiny bit differently from Snack Girl’s original recipe so here is my version:
We ate them with Santa Fe style scrambled eggs: eggs, almond milk, red pepper, spinach. Then salsa and avocado on top. YUM.
Sweet Potato Fries
- 2 large sweet potatoes (yams)
- coconut oil or grapeseed oil (because it’s high heat)
- garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Peel sweet potatoes then cut them into thin lengths. The thinner the cuts, the more crispy and delicious the fries.
- Lay out the sweet potato in single layers on the baking sheets.
- Sprinkle them with oil then with all the spices. Be conservative with the spices.
- Bake for 15 minutes then grab some tongs (or burn your fingers) and flip every fry. Continue cooking for 5-10 minutes or until the fries are golden brown.
Ashley Life Update: It’s snowing here again! The second storm in a week! Since I can work from home most mornings and my workouts are all here too, I’m loving this. I can just sit at our dining table, working and looking at the pretty snow 🙂
Confession: I HATE fish. I actually really dislike seafood in general. I’m not one of those picky, “I hate the consistency” people but oysters?? Truly the consistency is like snot. And fish? Any kind of fish is just so salty and YUCK. I’ve disliked it since I was a kid. When my mom made her delicious fish for dinner, I would eat a bowl of cereal.
However, (this is how I know I’m an adult) I LOVED this fish I cooked last night. Everyone always talks about how good fish is for you so I figured I’d give it another try. Teryaki was the closest I could get to make it taste like chicken. Haha. So I adapted a recipe from one of my cookbooks and came up with this. It is SO delicious. Sweet and tangy all at the same time.
Money Saving Tip: Wild-caught salmon can be really expensive ($13 for 2 fillets??) so we ate small portions with lots of veggies to make it last for the next day’s dinner too.
Sweet Teryaki Salmon (3-4 servings)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 Bragg’s liquid aminos (healthy soy sauce)
- 1 tsp. stone ground mustard
- 1 Tbsp. raw honey
- 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
- 2 wild-caught salmon fillets or steaks
- Whatever you would like for your side (bed?). I used leftover mashed sweet potatoes (from the Sherpherds Pie) and added sautéed red peppers and mushrooms (YUM). It would also be really good with a spinach salad, roasted veggies, and/or quinoa.
- In a bowl, mix first 6 ingredients until combined. Set aside 1/4 cup of marinade in fridge for basting.
- Combine salmon and marinade in a plastic bag and marinate in fridge for 1 hour.
- While it’s marinating, cook your side.
- Lay marinated salmon on parchment paper in a deep baking pan.
- Broil or grill for 4-5 minutes on each side.
- Brush with reserved marinade.
We’re getting very close to the weekend. I hope you all have happy Thursday’s! 🙂
A common excuse for why people don’t cook for themselves is that it takes too much time. To these people I say, “NO!” If you want to be healthy, you have to figure out how it works into your schedule. Of course, I can help you with this.
My Solution: Cook three times a week, the nights you have a bit more time. Easy meals that take no more than 30 minutes. Cook double and eat leftovers on nights you really don’t have time to cook. However, make sure that you are reheating the leftovers in the oven and on the stove top, microwaves are BAD. Let the 7th day be your meal vacation day and get a pre-cooked pizza or order in.
This strategy means I only grocery shop once a week and it’s only for the three meals I need to cook plus a little breakfast and lunchtime stuff. And now nothing goes bad either!
So this week one of the three meals was make-your-own tacos. YUM. It’s cheap and so incredibly delicious.
Side Ingredients (mix or match with whatever you have, and organic is best)
no sugar salsa
pecorino cheese, grated (< hard sheep’s cheese, like parmesan but without the lactose)
Taco Meat Ingredients
ground turkey or chicken (< very important that it’s organic)
1 onion, diced
1 Tbsp coconut oil
garlic, 2 cloves minced or 2 tsp powder
1 Tbsp cumin
salt and pepper
optional: portobello mushrooms, other soft veggies
1. Cook the taco meat. Sauté the onion and garlic in the coconut oil on medium heat for 5 minutes.
2. Add the ground turkey/chicken, spices, and veggies. Set to medium-low heat and cover. Stir occasionally while heating side ingredients. Cook for a total of about 15 minutes.
3. Heat refried beans in a pot on stove. Stir frequently.
4. Heat tortillas in oven on lowest setting for 5 minutes. While you’re plating the sides.
5. Put it out all nice and pretty and let people serve themselves! Enjoy.
Hope you’re all having wonderful Tuesdays 🙂
This recipe is really flippin’ easy. And cheap! (I got it from an awesome blog I read regularly: Once A Month) I cooked it immediately after my workout and was eating within 20 minutes. It is a pretty basic dish though so I also had a couple of pieces of toast. One with almond butter, one with honey. It would be delicious with roasted potatoes though.
Veggie Frittata (serves 4)
8 eggs – keep the yolks! They’re a healthy fat.
Whatever veggies you have – I used green peppers, mushrooms, garlic, tomatoes, and a bit of spinach. Onions would be really good too.
1/2 cup almond, coconut, or full fat milk
salt and peppa
1. Chop up all the veggie and sauté the hard veggies (peppers, mushrooms, garlic, onions) in a Tbsp of oil. Medium heat for 5 minutes.
2. While they’re cooking, scramble the eggs and milk together. Use a big bowl and a whisk. Don’t stop until the eggs get frothy.
3. Add the soft veggies (tomatoes) to your sauté and spread everything out evenly.
4. Pour on the eggs. And top with any green leaves you have. Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes. Then transfer to the oven to broil for another 5 minutes.
5. Take it out and cut into it! I kept mine covered for a few minutes before eating it and it went from pretty and fluffy to sadly deflated. But it was still delicious!
Let me know how it goes! (< do this by clicking the title of this blog post and entering your message under “penny for your thoughts)
Yesterday I forgot to say Happy Halloween, so….HAPPY HALLOWEEN! I hope you all got lots of awesomely dressed trick-or-treaters. We got one (Darth Vader) and he looked very confused when we gave him dried fruit leathers. Haha.
Also, today I am on my way to my first ever business trip! Me and the three coworkers are headed down to Orlando, FL for 4 days for a conference on health, wellness, and leadership. I’m actually kind of excited 🙂
On a totally different note, here’s the post for today:
This recipe is grain-free, sugar-free, and dairy-free. Sounds disgusting right? WRONG. I had heard rumor of the awesomeness of Spaghetti Squash but this was my first experiment with the pretty yellow gourd. I decided, since it’s already in the name, to make Spaghetti and sub the noodles for squash.
Mike and I were a little wary but jeez it’s good! A little time-consuming because the squash has to be cooked for a while but other than that it’s super easy.
Ingredients (makes 3 servings):
1 spaghetti squash
1 can crushed tomatoes/tomato sauce
1 lb ground beef (grass-fed) or organic ground turkey/chicken
2 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp butter
salt and pepper
Cut the squash in half and cook at 450°F (230°C) for 45 minutes. While it’s cooking, simmer the tomato sauce, beef/poultry, and garlic.
When the squash is slightly brown, take it out and go at it with a fork! It’s easier than it looks, I promise.
Mix the noodled squash with the butter, salt, and pepper.
Top with the cooked sauce and enjoy!
It’s a great evening meal because it doesn’t spike your insulin levels like normal pasta does. Keep those sugar and carb levels down before bed!
Smile, it’s almost Friday 🙂