Quick Question

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We've moved!

We’ve moved!

Just curious…What do you drink throughout the day to hydrate? I am a hardcore coffee drinker (duh) but I have started to track my water intake at work (4 big cups yesterday, but struggling for 2 2today). I find that I feel a bit better when I up my water. What do you do?

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Sunday Dinner During the Week

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AKA A whole chicken in the crockpot!

Now I know that some people might get a little nervous putting a whole chicken in the crockpot…and I don’t blame them! Those guys have a lot of little bones hiding in there! It usually ends with me picking gingerly through the meat to make sure that my kiddos don’t end up with a plate full of bones, BUT the flavor is ever so worth it!

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Doesn’t that just look amazing?! So simple!

I’m drooling all over again looking at that picture! The package of Milanos that I am destroying while I type are just not doing the trick!

So the first step is to gather your ingredients.

1) Whole chicken – I usually buy these on clearance at Kroger (and a lot of times I luck into an organic chicken!) for under $7. IF I can get my kids to eat properly one of these 5ish pound chickens would be the perfect size, but since they will only push around the yummy food that I put on their plates I frequently get 2 meals out of it.

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2) Olive oil

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3) Seasoning of choice! I chose to try one of the seasonings that I for from the Culinology® in Portland a few weeks ago. You can really use any seasoning that your family likes. This one has a bit of a kick which we enjoy.

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After you have gathered everything (seriously, that is all there is!) I spray down the crockpot and voila!

Olive Oil cooking spray

Olive Oil cooking spray

Next, I generously sprinkled the frozen chicken with seasoning. I made sure he had a good solid coat so that the flavoring went all the way through! After seasoning my young friend I added a drizzle of olive oil. I’m Italian…everything has at least olive oil and/or garlic. I decided not to add garlic this time because I really wanted to test the new seasoning.

Seasoned and Oiled Whole Chicken

Seasoned and Oiled Whole Chicken

Once he was all set I put the lid on and put the chicken in the fridge…that’s right, I did this the night before so that the next day my husband (who works from home) could turn it on after he got our son on the bus. Now, most crock pots that I have seen have 2 settings, low and high., but our crock pot has 5 (2 low, 2 high, and warm). I don’t remember who got us this for our wedding almost 7 years ago…wait WHAT!?…but I love them forever for it because I use it constantly!

So anyway…hubs turns the crockpot on the lowest setting (10 hours) and gets tortured by the smell all day 🙂 When I got home I realized that I had not thrown any veggies in the crockpot and man cannot live on meat alone (well, except bacon…duh) so I found some fresh green beans from our Farmers Market Basket. I gave them a rinse and threw them in a skillet with some coconut oil and salt to cook. Nice and simple…nothing fancy…and then VOILA!

Yummo Chicken

Yummo Chicken

Chicken in the crockpot literally falls off all of the bones. It is amazing. And the seasoning was perfection. We placed a small amount on the kids plates (knowing that there wasn’t a chance they would eat it, but maybe they would try it) and then went to town!

Chicken and Green Beans

Chicken and Green Beans

Seriously delicious and simple!

Seriously delicious and simple! And yes, I am using this picture again!

This dinner was exactly what was needed after working 8 hours and enduring a horrible commute in both directions. It left me full and happy without anything gross.

What is your go to weeknight meal? I am always looking to expand my options and I would love to hear what you are cooking!

The Boston Butt of Goodness!

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Pork in a Crockpot!

That is really what this amazingly simple recipe is 🙂

I was motivated by one of my favorite bloggers Nom Nom Paleo and her Slow Cooker Kalua Pig and a sale on Boston Butt at Kroger.

Nom Nom Paleo

Nom Nom Paleo

So I grabbed my butt…

Boston Butt

Boston Butt

And my bacon…

Bacon...and it was on sale...and lasted 3 meals!

Bacon…and it was on sale…and lasted 3 meals!

And I covered the bottom of the crockpot with bacon…

Mmmm

Mmmm

Then I placed the beautiful butt on top (fat side up!) and shoved some cloves of garlic in him…

Who doesn't love garlic?

Who doesn’t love garlic?

Then I turned that puppy on for 10 hours (the longest setting on my crock pot) and walked away. You won’t need any liquid because of the fat from the roast and bacon.

All day my house smelled amazing! I may have occasionally lifted the lid to take a sniff…It was all I could do to keep from putting a fork in there are tasting it!

The Final Product!

The Final Product!

This roast made more than I had anticipated too! After serving three adults (all who had double servings) and three children I had almost a full Tupperware container!

Leftovers!!

Leftovers!!

These leftovers are awesome served as pork tacos or in a breakfast scramble. I plan on making this again in the near future…maybe for Christmas! Mmmmm. If you try this let me know how it goes!

 

 

 

 

A Glimpse Into the Future

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So while I am trying to get my life together her is a glimpse into what I am working on for some upcoming posts!

Bacon and Egg cups

Bacon and Egg cups

Bacon and Egg cups with a side of avocado. Delicious. Simple. Paleo.

Snuggle Flannel

Snuggle Flannel

Amazing patterns of snuggle fabric that was ON SALE and I HAD A COUPON! This is going to be the start of a flannel quilt because when I try something new I try something big and new…but exciting!

Paleo Banana Muffins

Paleo Banana Muffins

My littlest helper and I made Paleo Banana Muffins the other day. He eventually had to be given his own bowl with ingredients that weren’t really part of the recipe because he kept sampling and declaring “So Nummy! Mmmmmm!” And he was right…they are so nummy!

Homemade Lara Bars

Homemade Lara Bars

I cannot get enough of these Homemade Lara Bars a la Chocolate Covered Katie! All of her recipes are amazing! As always I have my own little twists when trying other people’s recipes, but simple and droolworthy!

ALSO, I am doing Thanksgiving this week 🙂 My dad is coming down to visit and we haven’t spent a holiday with family in 3 years so we decided to bump it up a few weeks. I had originally hoped to make it all Paleo, but that probably won’t be happening since my eldest has already requested (actually kind of demanded) my dinner rolls! Also, my dad thinks I am nuts with “this Paleo thing.” 😉

Well that is just a little taste of what is to come!! Please let me know what you think and If there are any crafts or recipes I should try!

 

 

 

Almond Butter in a Pinch

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So on Halloween I chopped myself up an apple and planned on dipping it in almond butter as a light “dinner” before taking the midgets trick or treating. Unfortunately Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard was bare…at least of almond butter. *sad face*

To cheer myself up I decided to try a new recipe. Homemade Almond Butter!! It had always looked super easy, but I had yet to try it.

Here’s what you do:

Throw a handful of almonds in your grinder (I use a coffee grinder)

Almonds in a Grinder

Almonds in a Grinder

Pulse it…pulse it real good…(sorry…)

 

Within like a minute you will have almond flour!!

Almond Flour!!

Almond Flour!!

So quick! So easy! So NOT $7.00 a bag!

BUT wait, there’s more! Put the lid back on and pulse it some more and soon you have almond butter!! It won’t we quite as creamy as you are used to, but it is delicious…it is so good that the picture ate itself :-/ Since it will not be quite as creamy you will have to stir it a little and press it together, but man is it worth the extra effort!!

I ended up eating the apple plain and then the almond butter with a spoon!  Let me know how your’s turns out!

 

That’s a Spicy Meat-a-ball!

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Who doesn’t like a meatball? They are so versatile and filling. They can be ooey gooey with cheese or lean and healthy with veggies. They are good when it is hot, but even better when it is cold out. Yesterday seemed like the perfect day to whip up some meatballs. I based my recipe off of one at Easy Peasy, but as always I made it my own 🙂

Ingredients:

* 1lb ground meat
*1/4 onion
* 1-2 cloves of garlic
* frozen spinach
* spices – I went for salt, cajun, cayenne, and Italian seasoning
* 1 egg (I used a flax egg because I was out of the real deal)
* almond flour – super small amount

First things first…defrost the ground meat and spinach. Sure, in a prefect world I would have planned that I was going to make these for lunch and would have put them in the fridge the night before, but that is not how I operate 🙂 While these are defrosting (meat in the microwave and spinach on the counter) make up your flax egg. Now I totally get it if you are looking at the screen like I have 3 heads, but flax eggs are awesome! I hate using real eggs in my cooking unless absolutely necessary so I typically make flax eggs. AND they are pretty darn healthy. Anyway…mix 1 TBSP flax meal with 3 TBSP water until well blended and set aside.

Flaxmeal...love it!

Flaxmeal…love it!

While waiting for the spinach and meat to defrost and for the “egg” to rest chop up some veggies. Almost everything I cook has garlic and onion in it…roughly chopped. I love the flavors! I wish I would of had some red pepper to throw in their too…maybe next time.

I could live on garlic and onion...

I could live on garlic and onion…

When the meat and spinach are done defrosting I add them to the “egg” and I add the garlic and onion…actually…I add everything to the bowl. Except the almond flour! I know that a lot of recipes are add this and this and then in a separate bowl add this and this then mix the two together…not me! The less bowls I have to wash the happier I am!

Spinach

spice it up!!

spice it up!!

Everything in a bowl

Everything in a bowl

Now comes the fun or gross part depending on who you ask…get your hands in their and MIX! As you are mixing sprinkle a little almond flour on the meat. This is taking the place of bread crumbs or crackers to help hold it together. Keep mixing. Add a little more almond flour if needed…just don’t add too much or your meatballs will be dry 😦

Almond flour...isn't it pretty?

Almond flour…isn’t it pretty?

Next line your cookie sheet with foil, why…so that the clean up is quick and easy, of course!

It is ALL about saving the clean up!

It is ALL about saving the clean up!

Now get rolling! Set your meatballs equal distances apart so that they cook even.

Raw meat never looked so good ;-)

Raw meat never looked so good 😉

Put these babies in the oven for about 10 minutes. Then flip ’em and put them back in for another 10.

Don't mind my drooling...

Don’t mind my drooling…

Now this is where you have to decide…are you just going to just serve as is (perfectly acceptable) or put them in a frying pan with some sauce (also acceptable). I went for the later.

The Italian in me LOVES this!

The Italian in me LOVES this!

I just cook them until the sauce is heated up and then serve.

Plating is not my specialty...

Plating is not my specialty…

**NOTE** I used store bought sauce (GASP) because it was easier. No it isn’t 100% Paleo, but it is one of the things I am choosing to overlook at the moment. Eventually I will learn how to make sauce like a good Italian girl.

At least I get the veggie kind!

At least I get the veggie kind!

Well that’s about all for these spicy meat-a-balls! Have an awesome day!