Zucchini “Pasta”

When making zucchini pasta, you’ll want to have 1 to 2 zucchinis per person.  You’ll also need the proper tools.  You can use a vegetable spiralizer to cut your zucchini or one of these bad boys:

Veggetti Vegetable Slicer

Veggetti Vegetable Slicer

 

The gadget does all the work!  It’s as easy as the following:

1. Rinse and dry your zucchini. (I used both zucchini and yellow squash.)

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

2. Cut off both ends of each zucchini.

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

3. Use the Veggetti or spiralizer as directed to create your veggie spaghetti “noodles”.

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

4. To cook, heat a sauté pan over medium high heat.  Add 2-3 Tbsp. of olive oil. Sauté 5-6 minutes or until zucchini softens. Season with salt and pepper.

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Photo Credit: Accounting for Taste

Voila! It’s THAT easy.  You can also steam or boil the zucchini if you’d prefer.

Must Try Recipe: Tom Kha Gai (Thai Coconut Soup)

Tom Kha Gai: this tasty Thai soup is quite possibly my favorite soup of all time.  A friend introduced me to it last summer during my first Thai dining experience.  Coconut, lime, and cilantro – I was a little hesitant to try this flavor combo initially but it was love at first slurp. Don’t be afraid to try this. I promise you’ll thank me later. And it’s Paleo-friendly! This recipe came from the Paleo Comfort Food cookbook.  I made a pot tonight for dinner and both myself and my beau (who is an actual chef) couldn’t believe how amazing it was.

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Tom Kha Gai (Thai Coconut Soup)

– 3 cups chicken stock (if you are going Paleo, read the ingredient list to make sure there are not a bunch of additives, and no gluten.)
– 4 or so kaffir lime leaves, torn (Note: If you don’t want to buy kaffir leaves or can’t find them, you can use lime zest as a substitute. I did. I zested half a lime and skipped the kaffir lime leaves.)
– 4 or so 2-inch pieces of lemongrass, bruised to help release the flavor (Also skipped this because I overlooked it when I was writing my grocery list. I didn’t miss it and it did not affect the overall deliciousness of the soup.)
– 2-3 big hunks of peeled ginger
– 2 Tablespoons fish sauce
– 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
– Thai chili peppers, thinly chopped, to taste (these things are hot – so they’re an optional ingredient.  My local grocery store didn’t carry them so I wound up just throwing some red chili flakes in the pot instead.)
– 1 cup of mushrooms (Not gonna lie – I threw in an entire package of sliced mushrooms.)
– 2 cans good quality coconut milk (the full-fat kind)
– 2 pounds chicken breast meat, thinly sliced (I only used two small chicken breasts, thinly sliced. It was PLENTY. I have no idea why they want you to use 2 lbs. of chicken breasts.)
– 2-3 Tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro (I’d be lying if I said I actually measured this… I just plucked off a handful of cilantro leaves and thew them in the pot.)

Bring all the ingredients through the chili peppers (if using) to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let it go for about an hour or so to really get those flavors melding. Add in the mushrooms and coconut milk. Bring to a simmer. Add in the chicken and simmer until the chicken is cooked through. Finish off with some cilantro and extra chili peppers (if you want) and enjoy!

(PS. If you’d rather not use chicken, you can use shrimp instead.)

I paired the soup with a nice salad and some baked chicken wings.  They were supposed to be baked skinless chicken wings, however, I had a hard time pulling the skin off of the wings.  So I gave up. (Shrug.)  I tossed the baked wings in some Frank’s Red Hot – which is probably not Paleo friendly but I’m not going to beat myself up over it.  It’s zero additional calories.

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Another delicious meal on the books for the Paleo diet.  Next up: Pot Roast and Cauliflower Mash!  Who’s got two thumbs and is really excited about that? This girl. 🙂 TTFN.

Jalape-ñoooooooo!

My fingers are on fire!!! I made a HUGE rookie mistake tonight handling jalapeño peppers with no gloves. Now I’m feeling the burn big time. (Sigh.)

Anyhow, as an update to my previous post about my dieting endeavors – I am currently on Day 3 of The Paleo Diet.  I wound up looking into it and getting the beau on board.  So far so good. I purchased The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf to get my learn on and then the Paleo Comfort Foods cookbook to get some great recipe ideas.

Between the two book purchases and endless amounts of blog searching (PS. Check out one of my favorite Paleo blogs: PaleOMG) so far we’ve had some really great meals!  Last night we had green bell peppers stuffed with Italian sausage, mushrooms, onions, and an assortment of tomatoes.  I also whipped up some egg “muffins” to eat for breakfast for the rest of the week.  I found a number of recipes on different Paleo recipe websites and did my own thing from there.  I used some of the mushrooms, onions, and tomatoes that went into the stuffed peppers meal, and added some nitrate-free bacon (yes, apparently such a thing exists and is the Paleo-diet-approved bacon acceptable for consumption.)

The recipe is pretty simple: sauté any fillings you want to use, drop a tablespoon or so of each into the muffin cups, crack and scramble 8-9 eggs and pour the eggs over the filling and into each muffin cup.  Bake @ 350 for about 20 minutes. Voila!

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Those are my babies, above.  I ate two for breakfast this morning and they were pretty tasty.  I was long overdue for a grab-n-go breakfast option.  Although in the future I would reconsider using the cupcake liners and just baked them directly in the muffin pan.  I’m definitely going to experiment with other filling options – spinach, asparagus, broccoli, prosciutto, sausage, etc.

For dinner today we had pork Paleo “tacos” which, really, were just pork lettuce wraps.  We cooked the boneless pork chops (seasoned with cumin, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper) and then chopped the meat in a food processor.  I then made some salsa fresca, washed off some butter lettuce leaves, and had some DELICIOUS but spicy pork lettuce wraps.  (I didn’t mean for them to be so hot. Perhaps I shouldn’t have cut up an entire jalapeño pepper… but it was absolutely delicious none the less!)

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I’m pretty excited about the rest of the week’s menu as well. Tomorrow night I’m making baked (skinless) chicken wings, a side salad, and some Tom Kai Gai soup.  Friday night’s feature is Paleo-friendly pot roast! Nom, nom, nom! So far this is MUCH easier than being a vegetarian.

Aaaaaaaaand tonight (out of desperation for something sweet) I whipped up some “Caveman Cookies“!  Diet-friendly dessert – high five!

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Please feel free to share any Paleo recipes/blogs/informative websites that you’ve come to love!

Anyhow thankfully, now that a few hours have passed since dinner, the jalapeño burning on my finger tips is beginning to subside.  I’ve washed my hands again and again, to no avail.  Be careful, kids.  Don’t touch spicy peppers with your bare hands.  TTFN. 🙂