Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Crockpot Extravaganza!!

The past few weeks I've been seeing a lot about freezer-to-crockpot meals. The basic premise is that you pre-prep several different crockpot meals at one time, freeze them in Ziploc baggies, then pop a frozen or thawed bag into the crockpot when you are ready to cook it. Here is my Paleo take on a "crockpot extravaganza". 

The Recipes:
Honey Rosemary Chicken (x2)Lime Salsa Chicken
Bag ingredients:
Cook on low for 6 hours
Bag ingredients:
Cook on low for 6-8 hours
2 lbs thighsJuice from one lime
1/3 c balsamic vinegar1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/3 c honey1.25-oz. package taco seasoning
1/3 c olive oil2 jalapeno peppers, diced
3 T chopped fresh rosemary3 lbs. chicken thighs
1 t salt1 red pepper, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
To the Pot:
1 cup waterTo the pot:
1 24 oz jar of salsa
10 min before serving:
cornstarch for thickening
Coconut Curry ChickenSanta Fe Chicken (x2)
Bag ingredients:Cook on low for 8 hours.Bag ingredients:Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
3 pounds chicken thighs2 lbs. chicken thighs
2 lbs. butternut squash, chopped 1 red pepper, chopped
2 medium onions, chopped½ onion, chopped
8 garlic cloves, minced 1/2 t cumin
1 oz fresh ginger2 T cilantro
2 T curry powder
1 t ground corianderTo the pot:
1 t ground cumin1 can black beans
coarse salt1 can corn
1 16 oz jar of salsa
To the pot:
1 can coconut milk
25 min before serving:
1 can coconut milk
1 bag frozen peas

The Groceries:
MeatProducePantry ItemsCanned GoodsFrozen
14 lbs chicken thighsgingerNutmegCanned Coconut Milk (2)Peas
bell peppers (3)OreganoBlack Beans (2)Corn
onion (3)Cumin16 oz salsa (2)
garlicBalsamic vinegar24 oz salsa
butternut squashOlive oil
cilantroCurry Powder
jalapenos (2)Taco Seasoning

A few tips: Make sure you add liquid if you will be cooking longer than the suggested time. Also, season to taste prior to serving. It was my experience that a few of these recipes were slightly lacking in the seasoning department. 

Let me know your experiences and what recipes you've tried. Happy Crockpot-ing!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

2 Ingredient Crockpot Chicken Curry

Can I just tell you how much I love working near a Trader Joe's? It's awesome, and has given me a few new staple pantry items that I can use to prepare a meal on the fly. I'd like to highlight one of them today. Enter Trader Joe's Curry Simmer Sauce. I threw some chicken thighs into the crockpot with a jar of this yummy goodness and a few hours later, ended up with one of the simplest and tastiest crockpot meals I've ever made. I've used this same recipe with another curry simmer sauce and the results were just as yummy.

  •  Package of chicken (thighs, breasts, whatever)
  • 1 jar of Trader Joe's Curry Simmer Sauce (pictured: Thai Green Curry sauce)
Add chicken and jar of sauce to crockpot. Cook on low 4-6 hours. Serve or veggies or rice. Enjoy! 

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Stuffed Patty Pan Squash

Wow, it has been 4 months since I last posted... Sorry friends! Life has been crazy lately. In the months since I last wrote, I finished my last semester of coursework for my doctoral degree, moved, and started a full time internship! Recently in our produce co-op we received patty pan squash. I had no idea what to do with these cuties so one night I created this recipe to use them up. If you like these, check out my Stuffed Acorn Squash and Paleo Stuffed Zucchini

  • 6-8 patty pan squash
  • 1 lb breakfast sausage
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 cups spinach, washed
  • 1 cup cooked rice

Wash and dry the squash. Trim away any blemishes and any woody areas at the stem end. Poke holes in each one with a fork or knife and place them in the bottom of a small casserole dish. Bake the squash in a 350 F oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until you can pierce them easily with a fork.

In the meantime, prepare the stuffing. Using a food processor, combine the onion, carrot, and spinach. Pulse until finely diced. 

In a large saute pan, brown the meat. Stir in the vegetables. Cook until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes, then add the rice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. 

When the squash is cooked, cut in half and remove seeds. 

Fill softened squash with mixture and return to the oven for about 30 minutes or until mixture is brown and cooked through. 

Serve immediately!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Naked Sliders

My mom used to make us "hamburger steak" all the time growing up. This is my take on her recipe. Experiment with seasonings and flavors that you enjoy; it's hard to go wrong here. I served these alongside a delicious Sweet Potato and Fennel Hash.

1 lb grass-fed beef
2 Tbsp butter or ghee
garlic salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
Worcestershire, to taste

Form beef into 8 sliders, sprinkle both sides with garlic salt and pepper and a few dashes of Worcestershire, all to taste. Heat butter in a skillet or grill pan over medium high heat. Grill burgers for approximately 6 to 7 minutes and then flip. Cook for an additional 6 to 7 minutes or until cooked to your preference. 

Hope to post a pic soon

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Paleo Stuffed Zucchini

Well, obviously, I've already dropped the ball on meal plans. Womp Womp. Hopefully this tasty dish will ease some of your disappointment and keep you coming back for more. My husband asked for seconds of this before he'd even finished his first helping!

Zucchini Prep:
4 large (fat) zucchini
olive oil
salt and pepper

1 lb ground sausage (beef, turkey, etc. will work too but you'll need more seasoning for flavor)
1/2 onion
1 small carrot or 4 baby carrots
2 cups spinach or other leafy green
3 cloves garlic
1 egg

Preheat oven to 400. Cut zucchini in half lengthwise, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast for 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, brown sausage in large skillet over medium heat. As sausage browns, pulse veggies in a food processor then add to sausage mix. Saute sausage and veggie mix until veggies are softened and onions are cooked through. 
When sausage mix is finished, place in a large bowl to cool. Remove zucchini from the oven and reduce heat to 350. With a spoon, scoop seeds out of each zucchini half and put zucchini innards in the sausage mix. Add the egg and mix well. 

Fill zucchini with sausage mix and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until heated through. 

Makes 4 servings. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Meal Plans are Back!

In an effort to post more frequently and help out friends who have recently joined Urban Acres (co-op style produce we've been getting for over a year now), I will be posting meals plans that utilize our lovely and fresh local organic produce. The meals plans are *mostly* Paleo and will typically include 5-6 days of the week as our weekend plans change frequently. I'd love to hear feedback on what you've tried, particularly if it's a new vegetable for you!
Mustard Greens
Beet Greens
Green Smoothie (Blendtec)
Daikon Radish

Breakdown for the week:

Eggs & Veggies
Eggs & Veggies
Eggs & Veggies
Eggs & Veggies
Eggs & Veggies
Carrots & Hummus
Carrots & Hummus
Carrots & Hummus
Carrots & Hummus
Carrots & Hummus
Quinoa and Veggies
Quinoa and Veggies
Quinoa and Veggies
Quinoa and Veggies
Quinoa and Veggies
Almonds & Fruit
Almonds & Fruit
Almonds & Fruit
Almonds & Fruit
Almonds & Fruit
Goat with Rice and Salad
Goat with Rice and Salad
Goat with Rice and Mustard Greens
Roasted Chicken with Beets
Roasted Chicken with Beets

As you may have noticed, we are creatures of habit and eat much of the same foods on a daily basis. This is mainly do to the ease created in knowing what we are going to prepare when life is hectic and lunches need to be made. 

Also, you may have noticed the Goat recipe included in this week's plan. Well, long story short, our dear neighbors often gift us with yummy food which occasionally means Ziploc bags of goat meat. Since we have over 7 pounds of goat meat in our freezer currently, I am preparing a crock pot dish this week that utilizes some of the meat. 

Lastly, the "veggies" we eat for breakfast and lunches are typically from a bag of organic frozen vegetables from Costco, mixed or stir-fry.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Mom's Spaghetti Sauce with My Spaghetti Squash

My mom is a genius with a pound of ground beef and various cans of tomatoes. This is one of her specialties and one of my favorite spaghetti sauces. Those of you doing a New Years Whole30, eat your heart out!

  • Large spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise (be careful!!) and seeds discarded
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 T fresh basil
  • 1lb ground beef or turkey
  • 1 can(6 oz) tomato paste
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1-2 T Chili Powder, or to taste
  • 1T Italian Seasonings, or to taste
  • Garlic salt, to taste
 To roast spaghetti squash: Heat oven to 375. Place squash cut side down in a large baking dish. Add water to the dish, about half an inch. Roast for 35-40 minutes or until squash can easily be cut with a knife. 


While your squash is roasting, brown beef very well then add Chili powder. Add other ingredients in order and cover. Simmer 20 minutes or until you are ready to eat, the longer the better though. 


Transfer squash to a large plate, hollow sides up, and set aside until cool enough to handle. Next, scrape squash out of rinds with a fork and transfer to a large bowl. Toss squash with olive oil and basil.


Top a portion of spaghetti squash with a generous portion of sauce. Serves 4-6. Enjoy!