Sunday, December 11, 2011

Amazing Apple-Pork Meatballs With Sweet Sauce

I found a turkey recipe in a magazine that sounded good, and then I realized I only had maybe half the ingredients it called for. So I BS'd my way through the entire thing, making this an almost paleo recipe to boot. These are by far one of my greatest creations!

Ingredients for Meatballs:

2 pounds ground pork
1 large/ XL egg
2 apples, grated
1/4 cup bread crumbs (or almond flour if you have it; not only does it taste better, it's Paleo)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp dry thyme
1 tsp parsley flakes
1 Tbsp fresh (or 1/2 tsp dry) oregano
1 large shallot, minced

Crack the egg into a large bowl. Grate the apples over that.

Add all other ingredients (mince the shallots as small as you can before your eyes water up) and mix it all together well with your hands.

Form meatballs and bake at 350 degrees F for 30-40 minutes, but check them at 25 minutes; they are done when they are brownish gold on the outside and feel solid.

Ingredients for Sauce:

1/2 cup apple sauce (natural unsweetened is best)
1/4 cup Pure Maple Syrup
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

Mix all ingredients in a small pot and cook on low while the meatballs cook; keep warm and spoon over meatballs after they are on the plates.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Mostly Paleo Almond Cookies

A cookie should be sweet, at least in my mind. I tried to cheat as little as possible and re-create a gluten-free cookie I had tried from a box once. I think these are pretty darn tasty!


2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large/ x-large egg
1 stick butter, softened
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4-1/2 cup (however much you want) slivered almonds (optional)

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl until smooth, then drop in hefty spoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet. I pressed the bottom of a small cup into mine to give them decoration, but it's not necessary. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 10-15 minutes.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Soy Ginger Fried Chicken

I've raved about the tasty benefits of coconut oil in previous posts, so I fry everything in it now. And I've lost weight. Go figure. :)


about 1- 1 1/2 pounds of chicken wings
3 Tbsp light soy sauce
Coconut oil
1 Tbsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp ground ginger

Drop a couple of heaping spoonfuls of coconut oil into the pan on medium-high heat, enough so that when it liquefies it covers the bottom of the pan.

Add the soy sauce and spread around with a spoon. Arrange the wings so all parts are touching the pan. Mix the spices in a little bowl and sprinkle evenly over the chicken, then again after you flip the wings over the first time. Continue flipping and cooking until golden crispy brown, about 20 minutes. If you need to, add another spoon of coconut oil.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Apple Pork Roast

It drives me crazy when someone has an apple or other kind of fruit tree in their yard and doesn't take advantage of it. So when we took our walk and saw a ton of freshly fallen apples under a HUGE apple tree just lying rotting in someone's yard, I filched as many as I could stuff under the stroller and walked away. The good news is, I'll be making apple sauce tomorrow.

Anyway I had this pork roast and figured what the hell, why not use some apples?


2-3lb pork loin roast
1 tsp kosher/sea salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
dash of ginger
about 2 cups of chopped apples
1- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Mix the spices together in a small bowl.
Rinse off the pork roast under running water, then rub all over with the spice mix. Set in bottom center of large crock pot. Chop up the apples and spread all around the sides of the roast.

Sprinkle the cinnamon over the top of everything and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Tasty Breaded and Fried Eggplant

I've gotten into the Paleo Diet lately, and although it involves not eating dairy products or wheat-based anything, I still had this big can of bread crumbs on my shelf that I was reluctant to throw out. Eggplant was on sale at the store this week, and so a delicious side dish was born! And coconut oil is my new best friend in this house. It's much easier to cook now that my daughter understands the phrase "back off" when referring to her proximity to the stove.


One large eggplant, washed and cut into rounds, then halve the rounded slices
2-3 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
1 Tbsp Italian spices (or a few dashes of parsley, oregano, basil, and thyme)
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup coconut oil

Beat the eggs in a large bowl and set aside. Mix the bread crumbs and spices in another large shallow bowl and set next to the egg bowl. Heat half the coconut oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, until it just begins to steam. Dip pieces of the eggplant in the beaten egg, then drop into the bread crumbs and coat thoroughly. Drop gently into the heated oil and fry for about 1-2 minutes on each side, til the pieces are golden brown. Use the remaining coconut oil after each batch, as the breading will tend to soak it up. Continue the process until all the eggplant has been breaded and fried and set on a plate for serving purposes. Makes a great side dish, or a lunch by itself.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Simple Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

It's a rainy, yucky day, where we can't go on a walk or to a park, so we put our aprons on (yes, she has a matching toddler apron) and baked a pie with some of the rhubarb my mom brought from her garden. I looked through several recipes online and they all seemed really complicated, so I simplified this up with what I had available. I made my own crust from scratch, because I like to, even though it inevitably falls apart and looks horrible in the end. It's always tastier when you use real butter and your fingers.

Ingredients for Crust:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup butter (softened)
4-5 Tbsp cold water

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl, first with a spatula and then with your hands, until it forms a large dough ball. Then break the ball in half and roll out each side, one for the bottom of the pan (a regular 9-inch pie pan, greased, floured, and pricked with a fork) and one for the top of the pie.

Ingredients for Filling:

2 cups (or so) fresh rhubarb, chopped and rinsed
2 cups/1 pint fresh rinsed strawberries, de-stemmed and chopped
1 cup white sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 lemon- all of the zest and juice
1 Tbsp butter

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour evenly into the bottom crust, sprinkling bits of the last pad of butter over the top of the filling, then top with the top crust, slicing an X in the center and pushing down the edges with a fork.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Easy Carrot-Ginger Soup

I stole this out of a past issue of Parents magazine, and am giving it a shot since all we have in the house is leftover chili and the kiddo refuses to touch the stuff.


1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 celery stick, chopped
1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Add the olive oil to the bottom of a large soup pot and saute the onion, celery, and ginger for a few minutes while you peel and chop the carrots. When the onion starts to become clear and you can smell the aromas coming from the pot, add the chicken broth and carrots, along with a dash of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook on medium, covered, about 20-25 minutes, then blend together with an immersion blender (or in batches in a regular blender).

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bangers and Mash (Emptying the Cupboards)

Yep, I did it again. In my sad quest to change our diets (both my husband and I want to lose weight, so we're cutting carbs out as much as possible) I did not buy enough food to last two weeks. So I had to start getting creative to last through til payday. I found some potatoes buried in a lower cupboard, just starting to go a little bad, and you can always keep peeling til you hit the good part of an onion. And hooray for discount sausage! All in all I probably made this meal on about, oh, $4.


2 Idaho Potatoes (large), peeled and cubed
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 medium sized onion, chopped
2 fat cloves of garlic, chopped
2 cups chicken broth
3 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp seasoned salt
1 Tbsp dried parsley

4-6 large sweet sausages

Put potatoes in a large pot and add the chicken broth, then add enough water to cover the potatoes. Cover and start on med-high heat while you chop the onion and garlic. Add onion and garlic, cover, and cook until boiling. Then raise the lid a bit for steam to escape and turn heat down to medium.

While this cooks, put sausages in a large skillet and add about 3/4 cups water, then cover the pan and cook on medium-high for about 8 minutes. Then take the lid off, poke the sausages with a fork, and turn over periodically as they cook, uncovered, an additional ten minutes or so.

Once potatoes are fork-soft, drain the liquid and return to the pot. Add all other ingredients and spices and mash well, mixing together with a large spoon.

Serve with the sausages and some ketchup.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Irish Soda Bread Buns

Okay, I admit, I stole this recipe from a magazine. But it's really simple and accurate, and the buns could be made into one big loaf if you really wanted to. I think these taste wonderful, especially for a bread made entirely without yeast, though my husband and the baby don't like them.


4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup raisins or currants
1 3/4 cups lowfat buttermilk
2 Tbs melted butter

Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix first 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Add buttermilk and stir with a spatula to combine. Once mixture starts to become doughy, dig your hands in and mix it all together into one giant dough ball.

Knead it a few times once it's dough. Grease a large cookie sheet with cooking spray and form the dough into 12-13 little round balls, lining up on the sheet.

Cut a cross/"X" into each bun then brush the tops with the melted butter. Bake for 12-14 minutes.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Easy Turkey Sloppy Joes

I combined and added ideas from other recipes to make this one my own. It was really easy to throw together.


1 tsp vegetable oil
1 pound ground turkey (frozen or thawed, doesn't really matter)
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced (I was supposed to use green, but only had a red one)
2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup prepared barbecue sauce (I used Sweet Baby Ray's)
multigrain/whole wheat hamburger buns

Drizzle oil into bottom of crock pot. Add turkey. Toss all other ingredients in on top of turkey (except for the buns) and cook on low 6-8 hours. About halfway through cook time, open the lid and stir everything together with a wooden spatula; this is essential if your turkey was put in as a frozen block of meat.

(Sorry but for some reason the photo uploader keeps turning my image sideways)
When it's time to eat, just put some of the mix on the buns and enjoy!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Leftovers Lunch

Once again, I wanted to use up some of the leftovers and random things i had in my cabinets to make something healthy for lunch. Now that the baby is a toddler, she has a lot of her teeth and can eat just about anything. I'm going to recommend you either buy good-quality brown rice or rinse off the rice in a colander before you start cooking it, as mine came out tasting a little dirty.


1 cup brown rice
2 1/2 cups water
1 scallion, chopped
2 white mushrooms, chopped
1/2-3/4 cup leftover roast chicken/poultry, chopped up
1/3 cup frozen peas
1/3 cup frozen corn
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. parsley flakes

Prepare the rice as directed; in other words, boil the water then throw in the rice and turn to a simmer for about 30 minutes. When rice is close to done, leave on low and throw in all other ingredients, mixing well. Cook another 10-15 minutes, or until water is all sucked up.

Makes about 4-6 servings. We ate this for lunch, and I ended up throwing a little sweet and sour sauce on it to spice up the taste a little. But hey, at least it's healthy!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Cheese and Spinach Tart

I got this recipe from Parents magazine, and messed with it just a little bit for dinner last night. It was pretty easy, but all together took about an hour to make.


2 small onions, diced
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 9-inch frozen pie shell
1 cup reduced fat milk
1 cup part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp parsley flakes
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1 10oz package frozen spinach, drained and squeezed of water

Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Heat oil in a skillet, and add onions. Cook on low to medium heat until caramelized.

Prick pie shell with a fork and bake for 10 minutes. When onions are done, take off heat and let cool a few minutes. Mix all other ingredients in a large bowl, then add the onions.

Pour into cooked pie crust and bake another 45-50 minutes or until firm. I served this up with some of my Easy Lemon Pepper Fish.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year Mexican Fun Dip

I'm overwhelmed with stress right now. I'm trying to organize and pack for a move clear across the country to Massachusetts and on top of that my grandmother just died. So I apologize for the lack or recent recipes.

I don't have any photos of this, but it's so simple you can picture what it looks like on your own.


1 can refried beans
1 small jar any type of Salsa
1/2 cup shredded Mexican-style cheese (one cup for large batch)
2 Tbsp sour cream

For a large batch, you'll use all the ingredients, but for a small 1-2 person batch, place 2 heaping spoonfuls of refried beans into a bowl with 2 heaping spoonfuls of salsa and the 1/2 cup shredded cheese. Microwave on high for 1 minute. Mix together then top with sour cream, or mix the sour cream in. Makes a great, easy dip for snacking with tortilla chips or Triscuit Thins.