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Kelp Noodle Stir-fry w/Jalapeño+(Gluten-free) Soy Sauce

15 Mar

Having seen a few kelp noodle recipes on paleo food sites, I decided to try them out myself.  The best price I found were on iHerb.com, where kelp noodle packs are sold by the dozen.  You can find the noodles HERE and you can even get a $5 discount on your first order when you enter the coupon code BAJ231

Kelp noodles are easy to make.  Gluten-free, fat-free, low in carbs and calories, they are great for salads, side-dishes, or as pasta/noodle substitute.  On their own, kelp noodles have no taste, so cooking the noodles in a way that infuses flavor is important.  What I like about he noodles is their crunchy texture.  I have a couple of ideas on how to use kelp noodles (attempts forthcoming), but a very simple, basic way to cook the noodles is in a little bit of broth/liquid.  Last week, I made “stir-fry” using minced garlic and jalapeño, chicken broth, gluten-free soy sauce, topped off with scallions.

Here’s how I made the noodles.

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(Fitness) Cost of Travel + Eating More Fish

15 Mar

Traveling for work is great, especially since David and I are able to do so together most of the time.  But the occasional downside of life-on-the-move, or life-away-from-home, is maintaining our fitness.  Being away in Germany, then Stockholm, we have had no access to a gym for the better part of the last 6 months.  After weeks of super-late nights in Stockholm due to work (finishing work at midnight, going home and eating, then finally hitting bed at 4am to wake up at 11am, etc.) capped off with a lot of wine, perhaps a little too much dark chocolate here and there, David and I returned home not in the same shapes as we left it.  I gained about 5 lbs!  Not a disaster, but disheartening nonetheless.  I blame our late nights and wine, since we have been eating well for the most part…

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Wild Rock Shrimp Salad

7 Mar

Fresh Direct recently had fresh, wild rock shrimps on sale, so, naturally, I bought a pound of it.  Inspired by Maine lobster rolls, I used the rock shrimps to make a simple salad last weekend — the result was a delicious, lovely salad lunch!

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Simple Dishes: Coconut Flour Pan-fried Cod

3 Mar

Fresh, wild cod is delicious, and even better when they are local catch.  My favorite new way to cook cod is to season the filets, lightly dust them with coconut flour, and pan-frying them.  So simple!  The coconut flour gives the cod a lovely light, crispy coat, and also adds a hint of sweetness.  Served with a lemon wedge and perhaps a mixed salad, this cod preparation makes for an easy and light fish dinner.

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Egg in a Spinach/Bacon (Ramekin) Cup

2 Mar

Here’s a lovely way to change up your bacon and eggs, and eat your spinach, too!

I recently hoarded bunches of organic spinach, which were on sale… which resulted in finding interesting ways of using all that spinach.  We had some eggs, we had some bacon, so I took out my rarely used ramekins and made these adorable-looking breakfast in a cup (ramekin).  David loved it, and can’t wait for me to make it again.  I can see more vegetable variations coming up….

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Wild Mackerel over Spicy Tomato/Veg Sauce

23 Feb

Here’s a delicious and simple way of serving and eating wild mackerel: simply seared, over a chunky, veggy-packed, spicy tomato sauce.  Not only does it make for a tasty, hearty meal, it’s also very pretty!

For the sauce: Heat a pot drizzled with olive oil.  Sauté together chopped onions (1 large), minced carrots (3 carrots) and minced garlic (3 cloves), over medium-high heat; salt and pepper.  When the onions are tender, add a pint of organic cherry tomatoes (whole); lowering the heat to medium-low, simmer until most (but not all) of the tomatoes have burst, softened and cooked down.  Add 2 bay leaves.  Chop up pitted Kalamata olives (I used a little less than a half cup), and add to the sauce.  Here, add a store-bought, natural (i.e. no added sugar) arrabbiata sauce (I personally like Mario Batali’s arrabbiata sauce, which comes in a jar).  Simmer on low until heated.  Stir in a handful of finely chopped basil.

For the mackerel:

Salt and pepper both sides of the filets.

In a non-stick pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil.  Lay down the filets, skin-side down, and sear for about 6 minutes, or until the skin is crispy, on medium high heat.  Turn over, and cook for another 3 minutes.  Take off the heat, and let it rest for a few minutes.

Pour the tomato sauce in a bowl, and gently place the mackerel filet on top.  Garnish with a few fresh basil leaves.  Enjoy! x

Sunday Roast: Roasted Garlic/Onion Parsnips + Roasted Leg of Lamb

25 Jan

Roasted parsnips are a new vegetable dish in our home.  I’d never cooked parsnips before, but turns out they are quite easy to roast.  A little sweeter and nuttier than carrots, parsnips pair very nicely with slow-roasted lamb — and together, they make a great Sunday dinner!  My favorite recipe for a slow-roasted lamb is Jamie Oliver’s “Incredible Roasted Shoulder of Lamb” — although the recipe calls for the shoulder, you could also apply the roasting method on a leg, which is what I did.

As for the parsnips, here’s how I  cooked them:

Preheat the oven to 400F (or about 200C).  Peel the parsnips and cut them into approx. 1/2 inch slices; lay them out in a baking dish.  Chop up a red onion (or 2, if you like red onions); peel and halve 6 or so cloves of garlic.  Add some sprigs of thyme or rosemary.  Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and mix.  Add about 3 tablespoons of water.

Cover tightly with foil, and put in the oven.  After about 20 minutes, take off the foil.  Toss the parsnips/onions/garlic, and continue to roast for another 20 minutes or so, until tender.  I like to keep moving the vegetables, so that they brown evenly.  If you want to crisp up the edges, broil for 5 minutes at the end.

The turnips keep for several days and make for a delicious sweet-ish veggie snack!

Spicy Lemon Paprika Chicken Thighs

18 Jan

These oven-baked chicken thighs are juicy, delicious, and easy-to-make — they are great during the work week, when you want to make a relatively simple dinner at home with a lot of flavor, and also yield plenty of leftovers for lunch the next day.

SPICY LEMON PAPRIKA CHICKEN THIGHS

  • 2 lbs. organic chicken thighs, skin on
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsps cayenne power
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • Zest and juice of one lemon
  • ¼ cup organic olive oil

In a bowl, mix paprika, garlic powder, cayenne powder, salt and pepper.  Stir in lemon zest, lemon juice, and olive oil, to create the marinade.  Check the taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary (you may want more spiciness here, for instance).

Add the chicken thighs and toss.  If you have the time, let the thighs marinade for a couple of hours –in full-disclosure, I often make this recipe when I don’t have time to marinate the thighs for much longer than 15 minutes, and the chicken still tastes delicious.

Preheat the oven to 215C (about 419F).  Lay out the chicken thighs in a roasting pan and roast for about 30 minutes, until cooked through.

Turn on the broiler and broil until the skin is lightly crisp, 2 to 3 minutes.  Take the roasting pan out of the oven, transfer the thighs onto a platter and let them rest for about 5 minutes before serving.

These chicken thighs are great the next day, even cold!

Simple Veg: Grilled Japanese Eggplants

15 Jan

I found these beautiful, organic Japanese eggplants at the supermarket the other day.  Japanese eggplants have thinner skin than the more typical, large purple variety, which make them easier to grill skin-on.  The only problem was that I didn’t buy more of them, because I LOVE grilled Japanese eggplants and I should have been more honest about how many eggplants I could consume in one sitting.

Trim the top and bottom of the eggplants, and cut into about 1/2 inch slices, skin on.  Score the eggplant slices, making sure not to cut through to the other side.  Salt generously, and set aside for about 30 minutes.  The eggplants will “sweat” and soften.  When softened, rinse the eggplants under cold water and pat-dry with paper towels.  Toss in olive oil seasoned with salt and pepper.

In a heated skillet, grilled the eggplants until browned on both sides and the eggplants are extremely tender.

These grilled eggplants were AMAZING.  Melt-in-your-mouth tender, and we ate them in a flash.  Next time, I will make sure to buy more eggplants!

Simple Veg: Spicy Cumin Cauliflower

11 Dec

Here’s an easy variation on the roasted cauliflower (I’d previously posted a recipe for roasted cauliflower with capers) using ground cumin and some cayenne pepper.  I love the aroma of cumin, and the cayenne pepper gives the roasted cauliflower a nice kick — I think this cauliflower dish goes well with simple meat dishes, such as steak or pork chops.

Preheat the oven to 375F.  Break down the cauliflower into about 1 in. florets and put them in a bowl.  Add sliced garlic (about 3 cloves), add a tablespoon of ground cumin, and a teaspoon of cayenne pepper (or about 1/2 tsp if the cauliflower is small — you can vary depending on your spiciness tolerance); season with salt and pepper.  Drizzle with some olive oil and mix well.  Lay out the cauliflower in a baking dish and roast for about 25 minutes, or until tender.  Move the cauliflower around occasionally so that they brown evenly.