Vegan Ranch Kale Chips

Our little man is teething, I think. Poor baby. He had at least an hour of uncontrollable fuss yesterday until I finally decided to dope him up with some ibuprofen. Not a big fan of pain meds, but I would much rather do that than the tooth numbing tablets that have resulted in babies choking. I also rubbed his gums with my finger. He settled down right away and was leaning into it like a dog when you scratch their ears. I just pictured him going, “Oh yah! That’s the spot, Mom.”

Today, we are going to have a play date with one of Mason’s old classmates. We switched his daycare center and one of the tough things was leaving his old friends behind. Well, luckily when I was out on a run I ran into the mom and dad of Mason’s old bestie! We are going to start having more play dates for the kids. They haven’t seen each other in 6 months so it will be interesting to see if they remember each other and what they do when they see each other for the first time again :)

Now, on to my snack attack. I love kale chips and I have been looking for a little variety in my kale chip addiction, I decided to switch up my ‘Cheesy’ Garlic Kale Chip recipe by making a vegan ranch version. The spicier and cheesy version is still my favorite, but this recipe is also very good and especially for those who look ranch dressing! 

Vegan Ranch Kale Chips
Serves 12
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 hr
Total Time
12 hr 10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 hr
Total Time
12 hr 10 min
Ingredients
  1. 8 C Kale or 2 Large Bunches
  2. 1/2 C Nutritional Yeast
  3. 1/4 C Olive Oil
  4. 1/2 C Water
  5. 1 1/2 C Hummus
  6. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  7. 1 tbsp Salt
  8. 2 C Cashews, raw
  9. 1 Lemon, juice
  10. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  11. 2 tbsp Chives, chopped
  12. 1 tbsp Basil, chopped
  13. ¼ tsp Pepper
Instructions
  1. Tear off the kale leaves from the tough inner stems. The kale will shrink in the dehydrator to about half of its original size, so keep the leaves between 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide. Place the leaves in a large bowl.
  2. For the non-dairy ranch sauce, add the remaining ingredients to a high-powered blender. Puree ingredients together until the sauce resembles a cheese sauce.
  3. Pour the ranch sauce over the kale and mix together until it covers the leaves evenly.
  4. Add the kale in a single layer onto the dehydrator trays. Dehydrate the kale at 135 degrees for 10-12 hours.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Chicken Meatball Marinara

Well I almost hit a trifecta yesterday! I was feeding Kaeden when all of a sudden I hear, “Mommy I have to go potty.” I burst out of the chair, hurrying Mason off to the bathroom. We got his pants off enough and instantly his “fountain of youth” sprays all over the bathroom floor. HA! Potty training is HARD! Seriously my least favorite job about parenting. Anyway, so I clean up mess number one and then I was changing the baby’s diaper and I hear, “Mommy, the dog pooped on the bumpy rug and it is BIG one.” HA! Clean up on aisle 9 number two. Luckily I didn’t hit grossness number three with VOMIT, but I have had one of those days before. Now, I know why I don’t bother to buy nice clothes, do my hair or try to look presentable…..it just doesn’t fit in with the mommy cards!

Aside from my janitorial expeditions, we had a great family outing. I have Fridays off from work, so I took the boys to see Santa and met up with Luke for lunch. Mason loved Santa and Kaeden didn’t turn into a scream-a-pillar. Great success! Here is a picture from lunch! I had tons of veggies, chicken and brown rice from Big Bowl. It is by far my favorite Chinese. Oh and notice Mason has already decided he is embarrassed to have pictures taken with mommy. OH BOY!

Big Bowl

I also kicked off a clean eating challenge with my friends Laura and Michelle. It was a great turn out and everyone had enthusiasm throughout the five days. I just love doing this sort of thing to educate folks not familiar with clean eating and to also keep me on track. I tend to fall of the wagon around the holidays with due to baked goodies. LOVE ME SOME COOKIES. Pretty sure I am descendent of Santa Claus.

During the challenge I made these Chicken Meatballs with marinara sauce and served it over the top of spaghetti squash.

Chicken Meatballs1

It was so good I wanted to share with everyone here :)

Chicken Meatball Marinara
Serves 4
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb Ground Chicken
  2. 1/2 tsp Pepper Flakes
  3. 1/2 tsp Garlic Salt
  4. 1/2 tsp Salt
  5. 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
  6. 1/2 tsp Pepper
  7. 1 Jar Marinara Sauce
  8. 1 Spaghetti Squash
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cut squash in half, scoop out the seeds and place flesh side down into a 13x9 cake pan. Add a 1/2 inch of water and cover with tinfoil. Place in oven and bake for 40 minutes.
  3. Combine ground chicken and spices. Form into balls about the size of a walnut. Place in an 8x8 cake pan and bake with the spaghetti squash for 25 minutes until lightly golden on top.
  4. Heat up marinara sauce over medium heat until warm and add in the meatballs when they are finished baking.
  5. When spaghetti squash is done, add to a bowl and top with the marinara/meatballs.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Pulled Pork Tacos

Yesterday was a bundle of excitement! While walking Mason to daycare I noticed a really scary looking guy in our neighborhood. Me being a worry wart, I double checked every lock in the house and even locked the door leading to the garage, which is normally left unlocked because the garage doors themselves lock. The joke was on me because when the sprinkler company shut down our system for the winter I went into the garage to open up the main sprinkler panel for him and locked myself out of our house. Luckily, I had the baby with me and had him all wrapped up in a blanket. Dum, de, dum, dum, dum!

Of course I didn’t have my key with me so Luke had to come home from work early to rescue me from my bonehead move, lol. Instead of going back to work he stayed home. Mason saw daddy working from home on his computer and just had to get in on the action. I went in there to check on them, when Mason told me, “Mom, you can’t be in here we are busy working.” Even though I got the raw end of the deal, it was one of the cutest things he has done yet!

Aside from Mason’s cuteness, I made a very delicious Autoimmune Protocol friendly meal (omit the pepper for strict diet*). For the pork, I used my slow cooker and made my apple rosemary pork. The tortillas were modified from Brittany Angell’s cookbook, “Every Last Crumb.” Brittany’s tortillas are my favorite and I mean my favorite tortillas of all time (and even when I could eat flour tortillas). They are the perfect wrap for allergy friendly diets.

In all, Luke told me it was the best AIP meal I have made to date. I really hope you try this recipe and also love.

* Per my note on pepper, Luke’s doctor has okayed peppers but told him to stay away from all other nightshades. This is just based on our experience and Luke not having a reaction to peppers. For a strict AIP diet, remove the black pepper from the recipes. It will still taste delicious.

Pulled Pork Tacos
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
Tacos
  1. 3-4 lb Pulled Pork, cooked
  2. 2 Apples, cubed
  3. 3 Avocados, cubed
  4. 1 Lemon, juice
  5. 1 Onion, cubed
  6. 1 tsp Sea Salt
  7. 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
Plantain Tortillas
  1. 4 Plantains, slightly ripe (skin starting to turn yellow)
  2. 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  3. 1/4 C Water
  4. 1 tsp Sea Salt
  5. 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  6. 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
Directions
Tortillas
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Take off plantain skins and place all of the tortilla ingredients into a high powered blender. Start the blender on low until ingredients start to mix together. Use the paddle to push the batter down from the sides. Continue to mix until the batter is smooth.
  3. Place parchment paper on 4 cookie sheets. Ladle the batter into round circles on the parchment paper (about six inches in diameter) and spread out evenly with a spatula.
  4. Bake the first two cookie sheets in the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the tortilla onto the other side and bake for another 3-4 minutes.
  5. Repeat the baking process with the other two cookie sheets.
Tacos
  1. Cube the avocado, onion and apples.
  2. Mix together the cubed mixture with salt, pepper and lemon juice until combined.
  3. Layer the pulled pork and apple guacamole on top of the tortillas.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Chili Lime Sweet Potatoes

Happy Mother’s Day to all! When I started writing this post I got to thinking, why I am working on Mother’s Day? Well, technically my blog is a “hobby.” I say “hobby” because cooking yummy stuff is a hobby, but actually taking photos and writing up a blog posts is work :) However, I love sharing recipes with family and friends, so here I am working on Mother’s Day. TEE HEE.

To celebrate, we are going out to breakfast with my mom, sister and soon to be step-sister as my mom is getting married in September. We are headed to my favorite breakfast spot, Keys. They have the biggest and most amazing omelets. I usually get the vegetarian omelet and can never finish the darn thing, but that’s okay because it is just as good warmed up the next day. And this is coming from someone who thinks leftovers are disgusting!

Aside from breakfast, my boys got me a spa gift card. Oh boy am I excited to get my tired little legs worked on. They are still not fully recovered from running the Boston Marathon (22 weeks pregnant – if you missed my previous blog post about it) and also taking a beating from pregnancy related leg cramps. Seriously, when the night-time leg cramps happen they cause a serious lump in my calves that takes several days to work out via a foam roller and my wonderful husband’s massages. At any rate, I am just looking forward to a day of pampering myself as I rarely sit down to rest! Busy bee has to be my middle name.

All right, so enough chitter chatter and on to the goods. Chili lime sweet potato fries were a hit and were served with my chorizo quinoa peppers. This was a great combo and resulted in the family eating up every last crumb!

Hope you enjoy and have a fantastic Mother’s Day!

Chili Lime Sweet Potatoes
Serves 4
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 Sweet Potatoes
  2. 1 Lime, juice
  3. 1 tbsp Adobe Chili Sauce
  4. 1/8 C Olive Oil
  5. 1 tbsp Garlic, crushed
  6. 1 tsp Cumin
  7. 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  8. 1 tsp Salt
  9. 1 tsp Black Pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Peel and slice sweet potatoes into fries. Coat fries with olive oil, chili sauce, garlic, lime juice and spices.
  3. Place fries in a single layer onto a cookie sheet (I used two cookie sheets).
  4. Bake for 20 minutes, stir and cook for another 20 minutes or until fries start to turn golden brown on the edges.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Braised Citrus Chicken

We have a ton of meat from our CSA last year that we need to use up fast because the new shares start in February! So, looks like I will be making a lot of soups, slow cooker and beef/poultry/pork recipes in the next three weeks. The next two recipes in the works are a beef pho and some sort of stuffed tenderloin. The beef pho is because I love this soup from a Vietnamese restaurant by my husband’s work. Hoping that I can get mine to taste as good, but I am not holding my breathe considering I usually don’t have as good of luck at making Asian food at home :)  

Aside from dreaming up food recipes, I take my SAS base programming exam on Thursday. I studied last weekend and will be studying again all day tomorrow (minus a few work meetings). I am little nervous that they are going to ask me a ton of behind the scenes processing questions. I know how to write code I just don’t care what is going behind the scene. I write, push a button and boom I get results. The rest is FLUFFY details that bored me while studying. I am sure it will bite me where the sun don’t shine. Just need to get a 70. I can do this!!

My little man also made a wand at school the other day. You know one of those with a star on the end that fairies use. Well anyway, I got to school yesterday and he touched me with the wand and said, “Mommy you are a princess.” Well now did that melt my heart or what! Then he proceeded to take an enormous dump in his diaper on the way home, so I think he was just softening me up for what he was going to do next instead of going in the toilet. LOL! At any rate I just love the things he says! 

Now on to this delicious slow cooked chicken recipe. It is easy as pie to make. Okay I don’t know about you guys, but is pie easy to make! I don’t think so and I love to bake! Seriously the dough is a pain in the BUTT unless you buy it pre-made. Okay that saying doesn’t work in my book, but this recipe is SUPER easy! Just toss the ingredients in the slow cooker and come back 6 hours later to shred it. Oh and, my husband ate 2/3 of this in one sitting. If you have hungry tummies like my house you may want to get a bigger chicken and increase the cooking time 20 minutes per extra pound :) I can only imagine what my grocery bill is going to be when Mason is older!  

Braised Citrus Chicken
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
6 hr
Total Time
6 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
6 hr
Total Time
6 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 3-4 lb Whole Chicken
  2. 2 tbsp Mustard
  3. 1 tbsp Garlic, chopped
  4. 1 Lime, juice
  5. 1/8 C Agave Nectar or Honey
  6. I C Orange Juice
  7. 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  8. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  9. 1/4 C Olive Oil
  10. 1 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  11. 2 tsp Cumin
  12. 2 tsp Onion Powder
Instructions
  1. Place chicken in a slow cooker.
  2. Mix together remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour over the top of the chicken.
  3. Cook over low heat for approximately 6 hours or until the chicken starts to fall apart.
  4. Shred and serve with your favorite side dish or even use for tacos.
Notes
  1. If you are following a strict Autoimmune Diet Protocol replace the mustard and cumin with 1 more tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and another 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. These modifications will make the dish less spicy, but it will still be delicious!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Beef Vegetable Chili

Man oh man am I pooped from doing the 21 Day Fix Plyo and T25 workout videos this morning! Normally I run outdoors, but today is a cardio (e.g. off running) and it is -8 degrees, so I whipped out my workout friends. I have done many hour long workout videos in the past and none of them compare to the jam packed 25 and 30 minutes workout of the Beachbody ones. Seriously it is some ass-kicking and heart rate pumping stuff! 

Aside from getting my butt moving, I have been craving chili in the worst way lately! It is not something we have made in months because my husband can’t have beans, tomatoes or peppers with the AIP diet

To my surprise, Luke made this chili for me after I went to bed. What a nice guy considering this is one of his favorite meals and he can’t even eat it! I think I married a BIG TIME winner :) 

Beef Vegetable Chili
Serves 8
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb Grass Fed Ground Beef
  2. 1 tbsp Butter or Palm Oil Shortening
  3. 1 Green Pepper, chopped
  4. 1 Red Pepper, chopped
  5. 1 Medium Yellow Onion, chopped
  6. 3 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
  7. 1 24 oz Can Crushed Tomatoes
  8. 1 tsp Sea Salt
  9. 1 tsp Pepper
  10. 2 tbsp Chili Powder
  11. 1 tbsp Cumin
  12. 2 cans Chili Beans, with juice
  13. 2 cans Cannelini Beans, drained and rinsed
  14. 1 32 oz Chicken Stock
Instructions
  1. Brown hamburger in a large frying pan. Drain the fat and set aside.
  2. Using a dutch oven, saute peppers, onion and garlic in butter for 8-10 minutes until al dente.
  3. Add in hamburger, beans, tomato puree, tomatoes and spices to the vegetables.
  4. Simmer over low heat for 1 to 1 1/2 hours to allow spice mixture to soak into the hamburger and vegetables.
  5. Is it that EASY? YESureeeee!
Notes
  1. Serve with tortilla chips, avocado and Greek Yogurt.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Herb Pork Crown Roast

I have always wanted to make a pork crown roast because they look so cool, but the tricky part was knowing where to buy one! I have never seen one at the grocery store (maybe because I haven’t looked hard enough). So, I reached out to Hilltop Pastures (where we get almost all of our meat) and they had one custom made for me. Super duper sweet of them considering they take December and January off from CSA and market drop offs. Big thanks to Sara and Tom for doing a special order for us! If you want to check out what they have here is there website (we have been very pleased with all of the meat thus far!): www.hilltoppasturesfamilyfarm.com

So, for the roast I overcooked it just a tad because I was busy entertaining guests, but it was still delicious! My sister’s boyfriends (I mean boyfriend singular….jeez) kept saying, “Oh my goodness, this is good!”

If you are looking for Christmas dinner or need alternatives for turkey this is a winner! It is very easy to make too! You just need some twine and a little bit of muscle to get the two pieces put together. Mine got a little distorted because of the pan, so next time I would use one that is bigger so it creates more of a perfect crown (obsessive compulsiveness coming out in me). Despite it looking like a football it still tasted amazing! We are a football fanatic family so I guess that was okay too.

Here is a picture of what the chops look like after being cut:

Pork Crown Roast1

Now onto the recipe :)

Herb Pork Crown Roast
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
2 hr 15 min
Total Time
2 hr 30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
2 hr 15 min
Total Time
2 hr 30 min
Ingredients
  1. 8-12 lb Pork Crown Roast
  2. 1/3 C Olive Oil
  3. 4-5 Sprigs Rosemary
  4. 6-8 Sprigs Thyme
  5. 1/2 tbsp Sweet Basil, dried
  6. 1 tbsp Garlic, chopped
  7. 1 tbsp Sea Salt
  8. 1/2 tbsp Pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. If roast is not assembled into a crown already (mine came in two pieces), wrap and tie twine around the base so that the two pieces are connected. I used three pieces. Mine was oblong because of my pan, so next time I would use a bigger one to create a crown instead of a football. Didn't affect the taste at all though!
  3. After assembly, place the roast, rosemary and thyme into a roaster. Combine the olive oil and spices together and rub generously over the roast meat.
  4. Cover with tinfoil or the roasting pan lid (mine didn't fit, so I went with the foil).
  5. Roast in the oven for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Remove foil and roast for another 30-45 minutes. Check internal temperature of the meat at about 2 hours. Once it reaches 145-150 degrees in the center the roast is done. If it is still not done roast for another 15 minutes and check temperature again.
  6. Allow the meat to rest 20-30 minutes before serving. Cut into chops as shown in the picture above.
Notes
  1. I stuffed the crown with my roasted root vegetable recipe by adding the veggies one hour into the cooking time.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Rosemary Beef Roast

Yummy, yummy, yumm-meee! This is incredibly delicious. Seriously after 6 hours of this baby cooking it was incredibly hard not to lift the lid and continue to sneak pieces of the corners of the roast. Even my neighbor, Angie, stopped by to drop off a Christmas card and said, “Oh man, something smells good.” 

Aside from making this dish, I am taking a four day statistical programming course. Yesterday we went over second derivatives…I know, I know you are probably thinking what the Deuce Bigalow is a “second derivative.” It is calculus that I haven’t used for 15 years. Boy did I have to get out the broom and dust off oodles of cobwebs to even remotely understand the first of hour of the course. It felt like an episode of Charlie Brown, “Wa, wa, wa, waaaaa….second derivative….wa, wa, wa, waaa let’s take a break.” I understood 10 minute break, whoop whoop! Today should be a lot better because we are through the methods behind the madness…aka the math going on behind the scenes. Now, we are going to actually focus on using statistical procedures for research studies. I can do that part! 

Well, I have to do some prep work for my course, so peace out! Oh and try this recipe. In the words of the movie “Clueless” (yes, shamelessly one of my favorites)…..It’s da bomb! 

Rosemary Beef Roast
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 4-5 lb Beef Roast
  2. 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  3. 1/4 C Agave Nectar or Honey
  4. 3 Limes, juice
  5. 1/2 C Pomegranate Juice
  6. 1/2 C Coconut Aminos (or Braggs Liquid Aminos if you are not sensitive to soy)
  7. 2 Sprigs Rosemary
  8. 2 Sprigs Oregano
  9. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  10. 1 tsp Pepper
  11. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  12. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  13. 1 tsp Chili Powder (omit if AIP)
Instructions
  1. Add spices, agave nectar, olive oil and liquid to the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. Place roast on top and cook over low heat for 10-12 hours or until meat is tender (falls apart when trying to pick it up with tongs). Flip meat over every 3-4 hours.
  3. Is that all? Yes, it is that easy!
Notes
  1. Make sure meat is completely thawed before cooking.
  2. I served this with some homemade sweet potato fries, YUM!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Sloppy Sweet Pota’Joes’

Today I am traveling to Arizona for a research conference. As much as I am excited to meet coworkers who I have worked remotely with for several years, I am also sad to leave behind this little dude…

Mason selfie

Notice we were eating dinner, so I have bugs in my grill and Mason has food all over his face! Good times!

Before I head out for my early flight this morning, I wanted to share my recent creation. On my husband’s elimination diet (recommended by his chiropractor to heal his leaky gut and reduce inflammation symptoms from psoriatic arthritis) he cannot have tomatoes. Unlike most suggested Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diets, his chiropractor did okay peppers because he has not seen cases where these cause inflammation. So, we are following this AIP elimination food list minus the peppers. So, why tomatoes? Well they are considered a nightshade and nightshades such as tomatoes, white potatoes and eggplant (just to name a few) can be toxic to the body, causing inflammation to autoimmune condition sufferers. 

My quest for this recipe was to eliminate tomatoes from the sauce, not replace the tomatoes with disgusting beets (I despise their flavor) like so many tomato-free sauces do and not make it cloyingly sweet. My husband thinks I did a fantastic job! Give this recipe a try and let me know what you think.  

Sloppy Sweet Pota'Joes'
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 Large Sweet Potatoes
  2. 1 lb. Ground Beef
  3. 1 lb. Ground Pork
  4. 2 tbsp Garlic
  5. 1 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening
  6. 2 C Bell Peppers, rough chopped
  7. 1 1/2 C Raspberries, frozen
  8. 2 1/2 C Cherries, frozen
  9. 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  10. 3 Limes, juice
  11. 2/3 C Carrot Juice
  12. 1 tbsp Honey
  13. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  14. 1 1/2 tsp Pepper
  15. 2 tsp Onion Powder
  16. 1 tsp Allspice
  17. 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the sweet potatoes in a 13x9 cake pan and bake in the oven for 90 minutes.
  3. In a medium saucepan, heat up the palm oil shortening. Add the peppers, cherries, raspberries, lime juice, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon sea salt, 3/4 tsp pepper, honey, apple cider vinegar, carrot juice and 1 tablespoon of garlic. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Simmer on low for 30 minutes.
  4. Add remaining garlic to a large frying pan with ground beef, pork and spices. Cook the meat over medium heat for 10-12 minutes or until cooked completely (e.g. beef should no longer be pink in the middle). Set aside.
  5. Place the sloppy joe sauce into a blender and mix until smooth. Put the sauce back into the medium sauce pan. Drain out the fat drippings from the meat and add to the sauce. Cover with a lid to retain heat until sweet potatoes are done baking.
  6. After the sweet potatoes are done, cut a slit down the center. Mash it down just a little bit to make room for the meat. Top with the meat and enjoy!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Herb Roasted Turkey

I had all intentions on getting my herb roasted turkey recipe onto my blog before Thanksgiving. However, life got extremely busy and we were not home for the holiday this year, so I apologize for the delay in getting this easy fail proof recipe out to you lovely folks. I guess if you make a bird for Christmas (some do) then here you go! 

I know everyone has their favorite ways to cook the bird. Some risk their lives and the vitality of their home by frying it. Even though I know this is probably delicious, I just can’t fathom doing this to a lean and low calorie meat! Or maybe I am just a chicken about getting in front of so much hot grease! Either way I am not a fan of frying the turkey.

Outside of frying, the other alternative is roasting it in the oven. This by far is my preferred method, but then again the preparation of the turkey can be very different. My brother-in-law swears by brining the turkey over night so it stays moist (his turkey is great by the way). I am personally too lazy to go through that much preparation and don’t think it is necessary to get a tasty turkey. Instead I like to create an herb, lemon and olive oil mixture that is spread under the skin of the turkey breasts/legs and then I stuff the inside of the bird with lemon, apple and celery. It is easy and I have been told by several people who do not like turkey (mind you) that my turkey is wonderful.

Now, here we are on the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I asked Luke if he wanted to make our turkey and he said he was game. My response was, “Great, I am game too”. Then I asked the little dude if he was game, there was a slight delay and then a solid, “Nope!” Oh man did Luke and I burst out laughing! Goodness, is hearing a two year say “nope” with so much clarity a HOOT! Oh and I really wanted to take a picture of the turkey after it came out of the oven, but my hubby carved it before I had a chance too. Oops! So, all you get is the carved version over some arugula. 

I also want to mention that yesterday we also went on a REAL choo, choo train ride with Grandpa Byron (my biological father), Grandma Denise (my step mom), Uncle Cody (my brother), and my brother’s wife (Kandi). Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived in the train before we went out on a ride, so Mason was able to, completely against his will, sit on Mrs. Claus’ lap. He refused to sit on Santa’s! LOL. 

Santa

I think his face says it all! “Who are these two strangers and why are you making me sit on their laps!” Despite this he had a very fun time riding in the caboose and playing with the choo, choo train sets. 

Herb Roasted Turkey
Serves 12
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
4 hr
Total Time
4 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
4 hr
Total Time
4 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 12-15 lb. Free-range Turkey
  2. 3/4 C Olive Oil
  3. 3 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  4. 2 tbsp Fresh Sage, finely chopped
  5. 2 tbsp Fresh Rosemary, finely chopped
  6. 1 tbsp Fresh Basil, finely chopped
  7. 2 tsp Sea Salt
  8. 2 tsp Ground Peppercorns
  9. 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
  10. 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  11. 1 Lemon, quartered
  12. 1 Apple, quartered
  13. 2 Celery Stalks, cut in large pieces
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Rub 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of the ground peppercorns inside the turkey cavity. Stuff the cavity with the cut up apples, lemons and celery. This will help retain moisture and will infuse the turkey with these great flavors.
  3. Mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, herbs and spices together in a small bowl. Gently lift up the skin of the turkey breast and legs. Brush the lemon herb mixture under the skin. Brush the remaining mixture over the surface of the breast and legs.
  4. Place the turkey in a large roasting pan. Cover with the roasting pan lid or tightly with aluminum foil. Roast the turkey in the oven for 10-15 minutes per pound or until the internal temperature of the turkey legs reach 165 degrees. It usually takes a free range 12-14 pound turkey roughly 2 1/2 to 3 hours to cook completely (non-free range turkeys take an extra 20-30 minutes longer to cook).
  5. Make sure to baste the turkey with the turkey juices every thirty minutes. Also, after 2 hours 15 minutes of roasting, remove the lid and bake uncovered for 30-45 minutes to brown the turkey.
  6. Remove from the oven, place the lid back on the roasting pan and allow the turkey to set for 20-30 minutes before carving.
Notes
  1. If using frozen turkey, make sure the turkey is completely defrosted. This can be done by letting the turkey defrost in the sink for at least 24 hours or by submerging the turkey in a warm water bath for 3-4 hours. For the warm water bath, you will want to keep draining the water and filling it up with warm water every hour to speed up the defrosting process.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Spaghetti Squash Carbonara

Today was the start of a five day eating challenge for me. I posted the challenge on here for others to join the love. Hoping that through this challenge I can at least impact the eating habits of one person :) I know that I can impact one person then that person may impact another and so on and so forth!

Other than the clean eating challenge we just got back from a fun-filled holiday vacation in Milwaukee. While there Mason was able to spend some quality time with his Amoo (Luke’s mom), Papa (Luke’s dad), Gamma Sherry (Luke’s Stepmom), Auntie Kristin (Luke’s sister), Uncle Dean (Kristin’s husband) and cousins, Hannah and Lily. I think the highlight of the trip was seeing him play endlessly in the Children’s Museum. We even managed to get a two hour nap out of him after we left the museum, which is extremely rare! In all, I am thankful for being able to spend four days with Luke’s family and for having wonderful meals while we were there.

Post holidays always bring everyone back to reality. I say this, because in Milwaukee we had several days of eating everything but gluten-filed items. The downfall of this dietary change was it pushed my husband’s psoriasis (which had been in remission for almost three months) back into full gear and also means that his psoriatic arthritis is probably also flaring. Luke thinks it is a combination of having dairy and soy, but it could also be the reintroduction grains/legumes back into his diet.

Nonetheless, we are waiting for some blood tests from Luke’s integrated medicine specialist for food allergies. The doctor is recommending he go back on the Autoimmune Protocol diet to heal his leaky gut in the meantime. Last time he was on the diet we didn’t completly heal the gut because we didn’t introduce probiotics. We also didn’t have him on the supplements of oregano oil , humic acid or protelytic enzymes (natural steroid), so we are hoping this time around we can alleviate his psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis symptoms quickly. So, with all of this I will be back to creating a lot more AIP friendly foods to help keep my husband well nourished :) All I care about it just healing my husband as much as possible through the only way I can make an impact and that is through food. If I didn’t have this I would feel helpless :(

To kick off the next 30 days of my husband’s diet, I made an AIP version (e.g. no dairy, no grains, no corn, no soy, no eggs) version of one of my favorite dishes, spaghetti carbonara. The first time I had this dish was at my Aunt Sherry’s house and man, oh man was it good! Obviously, I can’t use eggs, pasta or cream, so it had to be modified quite a bit, but folks it tastes darn good this way! 

Spaghetti Squash Carbonara
Serves 4
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 Spaghetti Squash
  2. 2 Cans Coconut Milk
  3. 1/2 Lemon, juice
  4. 1 tbsp Garlic
  5. 1 C Mushrooms
  6. 1/2 lb Nitrate Free Bacon
  7. 1/2 Yellow Onion, Chopped
  8. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  9. 1/2 tsp Garlic Salt
  10. 1 tsp Sea Salt
  11. 1 tsp Pepper
  12. 1/4 C Parsley, finely chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Cut spaghetti squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Lay the squash skin side up in two cake pans. Cover with 1 inch of water. Place tinfoil tightly over the top and bake for 40 minutes in the oven.
  3. While the squash is baking, fry the bacon in a large saute pan over medium heat until golden brown on each side. Will take about 4-5 minutes on each side depending on the thickness of the bacon. Remove from pan and set aside.
  4. Drain the the grease from the bacon pan (leave just a little on the surface). Add the onions and garlic to the pan and cook for 6-8 minutes over medium heat until onions are translucent. Toss in the mushrooms and saute for another 3-4 minutes.
  5. Once the mushrooms soften a little, stir in the coconut milk, lemon juice and spices. Chop the bacon into bite sized pieces. Add it into the mushroom cream sauce. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer over low heat for 20 minutes or until the coconut milk has reduced to half.
  6. Scoop out the spaghetti squash noodles into a colander over a large bowl (save the shells). Doing this step will remove excess water from the squash. Let it set for 15-20 minutes. Drain out the water from the bottom bowl.
  7. Add spaghetti squash to the large bowl and pour the mushroom cream sauce over the top. Mix together the sauce and noodles until combined.
  8. Stuff the noodle cream mixture back into the spaghetti squash and bake over 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Turn oven to broil and continue to cook for another 5 minutes or until the top is slightly golden brown.
  9. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Thai Chicken Basil Curry

We had a wonderful time visiting my sister (Candace) and her husband Tom last weekend. Normally they live up in Alaska, but they come down to Minnesota for a couple weeks every winter. For dinner, my sister made a fabulous Moose (which I have never had before, yummy) curry for dinner. I already had a curry dish planned for day 3 of my post holiday clean eating challenge, so having her meal got my butt moving! Thanks Candace and Tom for inspiration for this dish and hosting us for the weekend!

Now onto this curry dish! For the coconut milk, I recommend trying to find one that only has coconut and water as the ingredients. Other brands add gums and other artificial ingredients that can cause gut irritation. The one I found at my local grocery store, that did not have these additives, is called Savoy. Also, the green curry paste, Mae Ploy, does not have any MSG, preservatives or artificial colors. It is damn tasty too!

All in all this was an incredibly tasty dish!  

Thai Chicken Basil Curry
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Ingredients
Thai Chicken Basil Curry
  1. 1 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening
  2. 2 tbsp Green Curry Paste
  3. 1 Shallot, finely chopped
  4. 1/4 C Lemongrass, chopped
  5. 2 Basil Leaves, chopped
  6. 1 tbsp Fish Sauce
  7. 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  8. 1 C Chicken Broth
  9. 2 C Coconut Milk
  10. 1 tbsp Garlic, chopped
  11. 1 Lime, juice
  12. 1 tsp Turmeric
  13. 6 Green Onions, chopped
  14. 3 C Broccoli, cut in florets
  15. 3 C Shredded Chicken
Sweet Potato Noodles
  1. 2 Sweet Potatoes, spiralized into noodles
  2. 1 tsp Salt
  3. 1 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening
Directions
Thai Chicken Basil Curry
  1. Saute green onions, shallots, garlic, lemongrass and 1 tablespoon of palm oil shortening over medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Stir in the coconut milk, curry paste, 1 1/2 teaspoon of salt, turmeric, fish sauce, chicken stock and shredded chicken. Bring to a boil and turn down heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the coconut milk reduces to half.
  3. Add in the broccoli and basil and simmer for another 10 minutes.
Sweet Potato Noodles
  1. Steam for 3 minutes over boiling water.
  2. Remove and saute with salt and palm oil shortening in a pan for another 5-7 minutes or until noodles are tender. You may need to do this in batches depending on how many noodles you have.
  3. Layer the curry sauce on top of the noodles and eat your heart out!
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Moroccan Lamb Stew

Moroccan & lamb? I realize this recipe is out of most of your comfort zones! Lamb has always been out of mine, but we received lamb chops in our monthly meat sharing agreement. I had no idea what to do with them or any clue on how to cook them, so I thought why not toss them in the good ol’ slow cooker! Venturing into uncharted waters, I had the slightest inkling on spice combinations so I went with some middle eastern flare that I saw in other recipes. 

Honestly, after tossing numerous herbs, spices and dried fruit into the slow cooker I had absolutely no aspirations of this tasting even remotely good. I just pictured me choking down some overcooked meat with morsels of raisins and apricots and a big swig of water. I also fully expected to whip up some quick gluten free oatmeal because I just figured it would be gross. Well folks, I was pleasantly surprised at how tasty this meal was! The flavor combos worked well together and it tasted fantastic served over the top of my Plantain Buttercup Mash. Really you could also serve it over rice, couscous (if you are not gluten free or Paleo) or even cauliflower rice too. 

I filed this under beef/pork recipes because I do not want to go through the headache of creating another subcategory for one lamb recipe :) Plus, even though this recipe is delicious I am not about to hop in my hoopdie wagon (aka…minivan) to buy lamb for more LAMB recipes. I will only be creating LAMB recipes as we get them in our CSA :) On a mini-van note, I always told myself never would I drive a mini-V, but I have to say they are some pretty pimp rides! 

Moroccan Lamb Stew
Serves 4
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
5 hr
Total Time
5 hr 20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
5 hr
Total Time
5 hr 20 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 Lamb or Goat Chops
  2. 32 oz Chicken Stock
  3. 2 Medium Sweet Potatoes, rough chopped
  4. 4 Medium Carrots, rough chopped
  5. 1 Medium Onion, rough chopped
  6. 1 C Raisins
  7. 1 C Dried Apricots, chopped
  8. 1 Sprig Rosemary
  9. 4-5 Sprigs Thyme
  10. 6-8 Mint Leaves
  11. 2 tbsp Garam Masala
  12. 1 tsp Cumin
  13. 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  14. 2 tsp Salt
  15. 1 tsp Pepper
  16. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  17. 1 tsp Ginger, crushed
  18. 1 Cinnamon Stick
  19. 1 tsp Ground Cardamon
  20. 1/2 tsp Cloves
  21. 1/2 tsp All Spice
  22. 1 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  23. 1 tsp Ground Coriander
  24. 2 tbsp Arrowroot Powder
Instructions
  1. Add meat, chicken stock, herbs, spices, onions, sweet potatoes and carrots to slow cooker. Cook on low for 4 hours.
  2. For the last hour of cooking, stir in the raisins and dried apricots.
  3. Place the arrowroot powder in a small bowl. Add in two ladles of the stew broth and stir together until arrowroot is completely combined. Stir the arrowroot mixture into the stew to thicken the broth.
  4. Serve alone, with cauliflower rice or over the top of my plantain buttercup mash.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs

Yesterday was our neighborhood Halloween party. I was supposed to go as a beer girl, but my costume (which I ordered from Ebay) never showed up! Sniff, sniff, sniff. So, instead of going as nothing, I decided not to go. I know, I know total party pooper! My husband was trying to encourage me to still go, but this brings me to revealing my personality…

Bare with me for a sec, I promise I will get to it…..

My philosophy professor in college once asked us to write up a brief essay on whether or not we have an open or closed door policy on meeting new people. My answer was neither, I am a revolving door. A revolving door? Yes, I am a revolving door because I am indifferent to people. From my past history, I have a general distrust for people, not really letting them inside until I have evaluated them completely. So, I make them rotate and rotate and rotate until I trust them. Some people get to know me right away, but the majority see only glimpses of me, which is unfortunate because I am loving and funny as shit! My husband is very social, which has helped, but I still go through periods where I am very standoff-ish. Sorry, sorry, sorry….in terms of break up words…..it is not you, but my lame donkey ass!  

All right, so what the heck does this have to do with the Halloween party. Well, large parties put my revolving door mentality into overdrive. Unless it is my own party, the room is filled with people that I do not know or who I do not completely trust. The whole experience puts me into stimulation overload because my brain goes into scanner mode and evaluates the actions, mannerisms and intent of everyone in the room. Sounds kind of crazy, but it can be too much for me! I am not anti-social, but I would much rather be in smaller gatherings or something that involves sports or fishing then I am on my game. Otherwise, I can get really quiet and want to get the heck out of dodge! Ya, so since I didn’t have a costume I didn’t want to stand out for not having costume and didn’t really want to get pushed it my revolving door policy. 

So, if you have ever wondered why I go off for runs by myself or am more independent it is me recharging my batteries and just being me. I am fueled more by independence than social settings. This all used to make me a little self-conscious, but now I just frankly don’t care. I am who I am and lots of people love me. Recognizing all of this, has just allowed me to interact in different ways and try to overcome my shortcomings. Booyah, there you have it, Jess disclosed! 

Enough of philosophical and psychological analysis of myself :) Let’s get down to business….food! This recipe is fresh, delicious and friendly on your waste line. Even though it says it serves four people, it will really only serve two if you have a hungry, hungry hippo husband like I do! I will trade you grocery bills any day of the week! 

Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs
Serves 4
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Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice
  1. 1 Head Cauliflower
  2. 2 C Cilantro, chopped
  3. 1 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening or Coconut Oil
  4. 1 tsp Salt
  5. 1 tsp Pepper
  6. 1 Lime, juice
Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs
  1. 2 lb. Shrimp, peeled
  2. 3 C Fresh Pineapple, 1 inch chunks
  3. 2 Medium Red Onions
  4. 1 Lime, juice
  5. 1 Lemon, juice
  6. 1 tbsp Garlic, chopped
  7. 1 tsp Ginger, crushed
  8. 2 tsp Salt
  9. 1 tsp Pepper
  10. 1/3 C Olive Oil
  11. 1/3 C Agave Nectar
  12. Bamboo Skewers
Directions
Shrimp Pineapple Kebabs
  1. Add all kebab ingredients (except bamboo skewers) to a large bowl.
  2. Marinate 30 minutes.
  3. Soak bamboo skewers in water while kebab mixture is marinating.
  4. After 30 minutes, place pineapple, shrimp and onions onto the skewers.
  5. Heat oven to broil or grill to medium high heat.
  6. For oven, place shrimp kebabs on a roasting pan (put 1/2 inch of water in bottom of pan) and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side. For grill, cook for 2-3 minutes on each side.
Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice
  1. While the kebabs are marinating, remove the florets from the head of cauliflower. Shred into small rice sized pieces with a food processor.
  2. As the kebabs are cooking, heat up oil over medium heat. Add in the shredded cauliflower, cilantro and lime juice. Cook for approximately 6-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Serve the shrimp pineapple kebabs over the cauliflower rice.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Plantain Buttercup Mash

Thanksgiving is only 27 days away! My belly is super excited to hear the news!

Okay, so my plan for this Turkey season is to give you Paleo and Autoimmune Diet alternatives to your favorite Thanksgiving dishes. The first replacement I am tackling is the go by standard of white mashed potatoes.

I know, I know nothing is better than spooning up a huge spoonful of white starchy yummies. You are probably thinking no way am I giving those babies up, but I am going to give you some equally delicious alternatives that are not only healthier, but are more friendly on your immune and digestive system. For your reference, see my posts on why white potatoes are hard on your immune system (nightshades and white vs. sweet potatoes).

The first delicious alternative is this Plantain Buttercup Mash! I actually made this to go with my Cherry Lime Pulled Pork. It was love at first bite. Based on this brief love affair, I just knew I wanted to serve these up with some Turkey! 

I already provided the low down of orange squashes in my Pumpkin Pie Smoothie post, but here is a recap: 

Butternut/buttercup squashes contain the highest levels of vitamin-A in the Cucurbitaceae squash family with about 354% of RDA. Why is this important? Well, Vitamin A is a natural anti-oxidant that helps the body maintain skin and mucus membrane integrity and optimal eye-sight. Research studies also suggest vitamin A rich foods protect the body against lung and oral cavity cancers.

Plantains contain 36% of RDA of Vitamin A. Whereas, White potatoes only have 1% of RDA. So, why not toss some plantains and squash into a turkey day mash! Your eyes will love you for it! 

Plantain Buttercup Mash
Serves 6
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 Buttercup or Butternut Squash
  2. 4 Plantains, slightly brown
  3. 2 tbsp Palm Oil Shortening
  4. 1 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  5. 1 tsp Pepper
  6. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  7. 1/2 tsp Garlic Salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place squash in an 8x8 metal cake pan and roast for 2 hours. Set aside until cooled.
  3. While squash is cooling, heat up palm oil shortening in a large frying pan.
  4. Remove the peels from the plantains, cut in half and cook over medium heat for 5 to 7 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
  5. Remove flesh from the squash and put 3 cups of it into a large mixing bowl (use any leftovers for a baking recipe or smoothie that normally requires pumpkin).
  6. Add the plantains and spices to the squash. Mash together with a potato masher until everything is combined together. Or if you prefer you can also use an emulsion blender to get a creamier consistency.
  7. Lastly, eat the heck of them because they sure are tasty!
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Cherry Lime Pulled Pork

Thank goodness for my brother! My site was down for about 8 hours and he got it back up and running! Most people probably didn’t notice, but in case you were trying to look up any recipes, I am very sorry for the inconvenience! 

I have been a little quiet on the Midwestern front (Minnesota to be exact and yes, it is getting cold here). So, I thought I should get my butt in gear and post this yummy recipe! My excuses for neglecting my blog the last couple of days have been…

…my little man has been mommy hugs, mommy sit with me, mommy I love you lately. I have been soaking up as much of this as possible. LOVE, LOVE this stage. Hope it never goes away, but I know one day and very soon he won’t want mommy kisses and hugs. 

…the other is work. EWWW. Being a manager is tough folks! I wish I could say more, but I just can’t in case someone reads this. BOOHOO! I guess my husband will have to hear all about it :) Poor guy! No wonder he likes to have male date nights. LOL, okay really I am not that bad. Although my husband may think differently. 

BUT, despite my neglect I have some fantastic ideas brewing up for Thanksgiving! I cannot wait to test them out and share them with you. Oh, and did I mention, Thanksgiving is the best holiday ever! Who wouldn’t want to get together to eat the living daylights out of everything, watch countless hours of football and pass out from a turkey coma? I like to! 

Cherry Lime Pulled Pork
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
4 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
4 min
Ingredients
  1. 3-4 lb Pork Shoulder Roast
  2. 1 1/2 C Carrot Juice
  3. 2 Limes, juice
  4. 4 C Sweet Cherries, frozen
  5. 1/2 tbsp Salt
  6. 1 tsp Pepper
  7. 2 tsp Onion Powder
  8. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  9. 1 tsp Garlic Salt
  10. 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  11. 1 Medium Onion, chopped
  12. 1 Sprig Rosemary
  13. 4-5 Sprigs Thyme
Instructions
  1. Place juice, cherries, spices, herbs, onion and oil in bottom of slow cooker.
  2. Cut 1/2 slits into the pork roast and place on top of the juice.
  3. Cook on low for 7-8 hours turning the meat over halfway through.
Notes
  1. I served this over a plantain butternut squash mash and will be posting this recipe with my Thanksgiving recipe series coming up in November.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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‘Cheesy’ Garlic Kale Chips

If you have read my about me section, you know that I lived in Alaska for quite some time. While there, I meet some really great people in Juneau & Skagway. One of which is my good friend, Bex. Bex has the warmest personality and goes out of her way to make anyone and everyone comfortable. Seriously when she is in a room, she can make even the grumpiest person smile! Oh, have I mentioned that I just love her! Anyway, she likes making whole foods for her adorable kiddos and asked me to post a kale chip recipe.

After months of testing & failing on a whole host of different kale chip recipes in the oven, I started researching how to make them using a dehydrator. I found cooking the chips in the oven resulted in either a soggy or burnt mess. Probably user error, but I just didn’t like the results. Finally, I came across a non-dairy cheese kale chip recipe on the website, Our Little Green Dot.

Trying to stay as close to the Autoimmune Diet Protocol as possible, I needed to adapt the recipe to omit the nightshades (red pepper and cayenne pepper). I replaced these ingredients with butternut squash and horseradish root for a little heat that was lost from the omission of the cayenne pepper. I left in the cashews because these can be reintroduced in week three of the AIP protocol. If you are sensitive to cashews and can tolerate seeds, I recommend using pine nuts, sunflower seeds or hemp seeds in place of the cashews. If you are curious about whether or not nutritional yeast is okay on the autoimmune and paleo diets, refer to this post from Sarah Ballantyne of the Paleo Mom. According to Sarah’s well-researched blog, nutritional yeast is a Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast that is grown on molasses, killed with heat and dried. Because it is not an active yeast it falls under the harmless category for most people. Here is a link to the brand I used in this recipe: Bragg Nutritional Yeast

After 12 hours of cooking time, I was finally able to eat these babies this morning. I am so inpatient it was very tough not to sample them every hour. They are extremely delicious and taste exactly like my favorite kale chips by Alive & Radiant, called ‘Quite Cheesy’ Kale Chips. Seriously, if you don’t have time to make my kale chips at least give this brand a try!

Hope you like these Bex and thanks for the inspiration from Our Little Green Dot.

'Cheesy' Garlic Kale Chips
Serves 4
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
12 hr
Total Time
12 hr 5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
12 hr
Total Time
12 hr 5 min
Ingredients
  1. 8 C Kale or 2 Large Bunches
  2. 1/2 C Nutritional Yeast
  3. 1 tbsp Horseradish Root, finely chopped
  4. 4 tbsp Olive Oil
  5. 1/2 C Water
  6. 1 1/2 C Butternut Squash Puree
  7. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  8. 2 1/2 tsp Salt
  9. 2 C Cashews, raw
  10. 1 Lemon, juice
  11. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
Instructions
  1. Tear off the kale leaves from the tough inner stems. The kale will shrink in the dehydrator to about half of its original size, so keep the leaves between 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide. Place the the leaves in a large bowl.
  2. For the non-dairy cheese sauce, add the remaining ingredients to a high-powered blender. Puree ingredients together until the sauce resembles a nacho cheese sauce.
  3. Pour the cheese sauce over the kale and mix together until it covers the leaves evenly.
  4. Add the kale in a single layer onto the dehydrator trays. Dehydrate the kale at 130 degrees for 10-12 hours.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Going along with my Polish roots, I decided it was time to create a Paleo friendly stuffed cabbage roll recipe cooked in a non-dairy, butternut squash creamy sauce. I am not going to lie, this recipe takes a while to prepare, but despite the time commitment it is totally worth it the effort!

If it is any consolation, my husband ate four of these rolls last night and took four with him for lunch. His direct quote was, “This is the best meal you have made on the Autoimmune Protocol Diet.” I am thinking that means he is giving two thumbs up!  

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
Serves 4
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Ingredients
Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
  1. 1 Head Cabbage
  2. 1 lb. Ground Beef
  3. 1 Head Cauliflower
  4. 1 tbsp Garlic
  5. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  6. 1 tsp Salt
  7. 1/2 tsp Pepper
Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce
  1. 3 tbsp Palm Shortening
  2. 3 tbsp Arrowroot Powder
  3. 2 1/2 - 3 C Coconut Milk
  4. 1/4 C Nutritional Yeast
  5. 1 tsp Onion Powder
  6. Pinch Nutmeg
  7. Pinch Cinnamon
  8. Salt
  9. Pepper
  10. 1 1/2 C Butternut Squash Puree
Directions
Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
  1. Place the head of cabbage over a steamer basket in a large pot of water. Cook over medium-high heat for 20 minutes or until cabbage leaves are tender.
  2. Remove cauliflower florets and shred into small rice sized pieces with a food processor. Set aside in a large bowl.
  3. Brown the ground beef and garlic over medium heat until beef is done. Drain the grease off the meat before adding to the bowl with the cauliflower.
  4. Add beef to cauliflower and season with salt, pepper and onion powder to taste.
  5. Pull the leaves off the cooked cabbage. Remove the center stems. Add a 1/2 cup of the beef and cauliflower mixture into the center of the cabbage leaf. Fold in the sides, roll up from the bottom to the top and place them into a 13X9 glass cake pan. Repeat this process until using up all of the cabbage leaves.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce
  1. Heat palm shortening over medium-high heat. Stir in the arrowroot powder. Add in 1/2 cup of coconut milk at a time. Stir constantly until the milk is completely combined. Repeat this process until all of the milk has been used. Continue to heat until the sauce is creamy.
  2. Stir in the nutritional yeast, butternut squash puree and spices. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Pour the creamy butternut squash sauce over the cabbage rolls. Cover with tinfoil and bake for 20-25 minutes.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Pumpkin Coconut Curry

Fall is my all-time favorite season! I love everything about it. Nothing is better than watching leaves turn shades of crimson red, harvest orange and rustic yellow. I love these color combinations so much that my office and dining room are modeled after a fall color pallet.

Another added benefit of fall is it is fun to come up with recipes using pumpkin, apples, butternut squash, sweet potatoes and other fall harvested fruits and vegetables. Having some pumpkin lying around I decided to try my hand at a fall inspired curry.

Most of the ingredients used in this recipe are Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) friendly (except for the cumin). Seed based spices are allowed during week one of the reintroduction phase of the autoimmune protocol diet. So, if you can tolerate cumin seeds then this would be considered AIP friendly.  

Pumpkin Coconut Curry
Serves 2
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
Pumpkin Coconut Curry
  1. 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
  2. 1/2 C Pumpkin Puree
  3. 1 can Coconut Milk
  4. 1 Onion, chopped
  5. 2 Sweet Potatoes, chopped
  6. 3 Carrots, chopped
  7. 1 tbsp Garlic, finely chopped
  8. 3 tsp Garam Masala
  9. 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  10. 1 tsp Pepper
  11. 1 Lemon, juice
Cauliflower Rice
  1. 1 Head Cauliflower
  2. 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
  3. Salt
  4. 1 Lime, juice
  5. Pepper
Directions
Pumpkin Coconut Curry
  1. Add coconut oil, garlic, sweet potatoes, carrots and onions to a large frying pan. Cook over medium heat for 10-15 minutes until sweet potatoes are tender.
  2. Stir in the coconut milk, shrimp, lemon juice, spices and pumpkin. Reduce the heat to simmer and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
Cauliflower Rice
  1. Remove the florets from the head of cauliflower. Shred into small rice sized pieces with a food processor.
  2. Heat up coconut oil over medium heat. Add in the shredded cauliflower and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Serve the shrimp coconut curry over the cauliflower rice.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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Bacon Scallop Zucchuccine

Great news to report! My husband, who suffers from psoriatic arthritis and has now been on the Autoimmune Protocol for two months now, is slowly starting to regain more strength in his hands! Since being on this diet he has noticed that remedial tasks such as opening a bag of chips are now possible without a considerable amount of excruciating pain. This gain in strength and improvement in symptoms has come without the use of prescription medications too! To get this far he has used the Autoimmune Diet Protocol, increased doses of Vitamin D/Omega 3 capsules and consumed daily Curcumin Turmeric supplements. Totally awesome, huh? We are hoping that this trend continues! 

So, while on this very restrictive diet it can seem like the end of the world after you look at what you cannot eat. However, I try to focus on the positive and come up with tasty meals for my hubby. One of which is my Bacon Scallop Zucchuccine recipe.

Oh my Goodness gracious this was a good meal folks! Definitely two thumbs up meal for my husband! 

Bacon Scallop Zucchuccine
Serves 2
This is a super easy, but incredibly flavorful Gluten Free, Paleo and Autoimmune Friendly meal.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 lb Bacon, chopped
  2. 1 dozen Large Scallops
  3. 2 Zucchinis
  4. 2 Lemons, juice
  5. 1/2 Medium Red Onion, chopped
  6. 2 tbsp Garlic
  7. Salt
  8. Pepper
Instructions
  1. Using a vegetable spiralizer, make thick zucchini noodles similar to the size of fettuccine. Set aside.
  2. Fry bite sized bacon pieces in a large sauce pan over medium heat until golden brown. Remove from pan and set aside. Pat down to remove excess grease.
  3. Pour some of the bacon grease into a can or glass mason jar to use later, but leave some for frying up the scallops and zucchini noodles.
  4. Heat up the pan used to fry bacon over high heat. Add the scallops and cook 2-3 minutes (slightly less time for smaller scallops) on each side until they start to get browned on each side. While cooking sprinkle salt, pepper and lemon juice over the top of one side of the scallops. Make sure to spread them apart to allow for equal cooking. You may need to rearrange them too if the center of the pan gets hotter than the outer edges. Set aside and cover with tinfoil to keep warm.
  5. Add the zucchini noodles and garlic to the bacon pan. Toss in cooked bacon, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Using metal tongs, keep combining the ingredients until the noodles are al dente (slightly crunchy, but not soggy). Add in the scallops just to warm them up slightly. Salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Sprinkle more lemon juice over the top (if desired) and serve immediately.
http://barerootkitchen.com/
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