Coconut-Tomato Sauce over Japanese Yam “Pasta” (Paleo)

For the past few days, I’ve been on a mini-road trip and vacation to visit my friend  in North Jersey. Living right on the Hudson River, this meant a day trip into New York City!

And rather than going to the #1 Tourist Spot (AKA Times Square), we decided to take the aerial tramway to Roosevelt Island. Totally recommended day trip idea! It wasn’t overcrowded as the rest of the city and I got to see the ruins of the Smallpox hospital, catch Pokemon on the promenade, and visit the FDR memorial at one of the island’s tips. I swear, I want to be proposed to there one day- so pretty and tranquil.

After the last few days of eating out, I was ready to make a home-cooked meal. Unfortunately, I was too tired from my trip to go out shopping for more ingredients and instead settled for whatever was already in my kitchen. No regrets though- this meal turned out to be a winner. The only thing I might do next time is add in some more veggies:)

Coconut-Tomato Sauce over Japanese Yam “Pasta” (Paleo)

Coconut-Tomato Sauce over Japanese Yam “Pasta” (Paleo)

Ingredients:

1 tbsp ghee (or butter or oil)

3 garlic cloves, chopped

1 small onion, chopped

salt and pepper

1 and 1/3 cup full-fat, canned coconut milk

1/4 cup vegetable broth

2 tbsp tomato paste

2 tbsp fresh basil + extra for garnish

1 medium-sized Japanese yam

Directions:

Heat ghee in a deep skillet over medium-low heat. Add in garlic, onion, salt and pepper and sauté for 10 minutes. Next, stir in coconut milk, broth, tomato paste, and basil. Bring sauce to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Let cook for another 10 minutes.

While waiting, make the yam into a pasta with a vegetable spiral. Once the sauce is done cooking, mix in pasta. Don’t worry if it seems like you don’t have enough sauce!- just mix it in the best you can and top with a lid. Let cook for 15 minutes (during this time, the noodles will get soft and shrink). Afterwards, stir the pasta around around in the sauce, adjust with salt and pepper, and place in a serving bowl. Top with the extra fresh basil.

Cajun Vegetable Dip (Paleo)

I finally feel like I’ve reached the “fun” part of summer!

This past week I took my state test to become certified to teach middle school social studies. I’m not going to lie though, it was brutal. With the possibility to be tested on ANY event/person/civilization/land form/etc in the world, it was impossible for me to know everything that would be on the test. I’ve been studying for this exam for months and I still feel that there was so much I didn’t know.

On the bright side though, I love studying history, so it hasn’t been torture to prepare for this test. And I had the chance to brush up on government, geography, and economics- subjects I’ve always been slightly on the fence with. Anyway, results don’t come in until next month, so I’m forced to chill until then.

Which means I can guiltlessly begin to make stuff in the kitchen again! Such as on one of my favorite veggie dips! 

Cajun Vegetable Dip (Paleo)

Cajun Vegetable Dip (Paleo)

Ingredients:

1/2 head of cauliflower, chopped into florets

3 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp tahini

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 tbsp paprika

1 tbsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cayenne 

pepper

Juice from 1 lemon

Directions:

Fill a pot with water and add in the cauliflower. Bring water to a boil and cook the  cauliflower. Once tender, drain cauliflower, transfer to a food processor and blend until smooth. Add in the rest of the ingredients and blend until all combined. Cool in the fridge for at least 3 minutes to allow flavors to intensify.

Double Chocolate Chip Cake (Paleo)

Chocolate cake time! Tomorrow is my brother’s 18th birthday and since I won’t be seeing him then, we’re having cake tonight! I’ve been working with this recipe for a while now and am so happy to have perfected it in time.

The recipe makes one layer. I was too lazy to make layer II, so I just cut the layer in half and placed the one half on top of the other (with homemade “frosting” in between, of course) to make a half cake. Since there’s only 3 people here to eat the cake, this is the perfect amount for us. However, feel free to double or triple the size to feed a crowd!

Double Chocolate Chip Cake (Paleo)

Double Chocolate Chip Cake (Paleo)

Ingredients:

1/4 cup coconut oil, softened

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1/2 tbsp vanilla extract

2 large eggs

1/3 cup cacao powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking soda

pinch of stevia

3 tbsp coconut flour

3 tbsp chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and oil a 8-inch diameter springform pan.

In a food processor, pulse together coconut oil, sugar, and vanilla. Add in eggs and pulse again. Add in cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, stevia, and coconut flour until all the ingredients are combined. Stir in your chocolate chips.

Transfer and spread the batter into your pan. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Once done, let cool before moving.

*Makes 1 layer.

**I cut the one layer in half and place one on top of the other for a half cake.

Lemon Chicken with Asparagus and Mushrooms (Paleo)

Sorry for such the late post this week. I was fortunate enough to attend an education conference in Washington D.C this past week. I love going to this conference as it lets me meet with pre-service educators from all around the country. Sounds a little corny, but it gets me really excited for teaching!

Anyway, right before I left for D.C, I made this scrumptious meal that even my brother liked (ok, he wouldn’t eat the mushrooms, but hey, it’s something!).

When I make soups, I sometimes add in a cheese rind to enhance flavor (see this recipe for an example). So to add a lemony flavor to this recipe, I threw in lemon rinds during cooking time.

Lemon Chicken with Asparagus and Mushrooms (Paleo)

Lemon Chicken with Asparagus and Mushrooms (Paleo)

Ingredients:

1 tbsp avocado oil

1 lb skin-less chicken breasts, chopped into bite-sized pieces

1 onion, chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

10 asparagus spears, cut into bite-sized pieces

2 portobello mushrooms, diced 

1 cup canned coconut milk (full-fat)

1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped

1 lemon, cut into quarters

Salt and Pepper, to taste

Vegetable or chicken broth

Directions:

In a deep skillet, heat oil and add chicken. Season with salt and pepper, cook completely and set aside on a plate.

Add onions and garlic cloves to the skillet and sauté for 2 minutes. Add in asparagus and mushrooms and cook for an additional 12 minutes, or until onions begin to brown and mushrooms shrink in size. If vegetables begin to stick to the skillet, add in a splash of vegetable/chicken broth. Return chicken to the skillet and mix altogether.

Add in coconut milk and rosemary. Squeeze in the lemon juice from lemons (careful for seeds) and then add in the lemon rinds.

Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes. Remove lemon rinds and season with salt and pepper before serving.

Cabbage and Chicken Skillet (Paleo)

A tasty meal with some simple ingredients…

Cabbage and Chicken Skillet (Paleo)

Cabbage and Chicken Skillet (Paleo)

Ingredients:

1 tbsp avocado oil

1/2 tbsp minced garlic

1/2 large onion, chopped

1 and 1/2 tbsp paprika

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1/2 head of raw green cabbage, chopped

1 chicken breast, cooked and cubed (I use leftover grilled chicken)

1/3 cup tomato/marinara sauce

1/3 cup beef broth

2 bay leafs

salt and pepper

Directions:

Heat oil in a deep skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic and onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Add paprika and thyme and cook for 1 more minute. Throw in cabbage, chicken, tomato/marinara sauce, broth, bay leafs, and salt and pepper. Stir altogether and top skillet with lid. Let cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leafs and serve.

 

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