Recipe: Paleo Pumpkin Pecan Cake

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Ingredients :
1 tbsp pure vanilla
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
6 eggs
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup pumpkin purée
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
6 pitted medjool dates
1/4 tsp baking soda

Directions:
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a medium sized mixing bowl  eggs, vanilla, pumpkin puree, salt, baking soda, and pumpkin pie spice. Blend with a hand mixer until smooth.

3. Add coconut flour to batter, and continue to blend.

4. In a small bowl, add pitted medjool dates, cover with 1 tablespoon of water and heat in the microwave for 30 seconds. Mash the dates witha fork, add another tablespoon of water, and mash again.

5. Add date mixture and melted coconut oil to the mixing bowl, and blend until smooth.

6. Stir in the chopped pecans.

7. Pour into greased 8×8 pan. Bake  at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.

8. Enjoy!

Forgive, Forget and move Forward

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Well what did today bring?A day of thought for sure.

 I’m all snug by the fire having a tea and listening to my daughter play piano. Time to think about where I’m at. The last few days have been challenging for me once again in the paleo dept. I been recovering for the flu the last few weeks and a very sore back from a fall.I’m almost back at 100% But not quite.Today my self pity got the best of me. But only for a moment.

 I’m not sure how I convinced myself this time that I was going to have a good ol’ breakfast out.

 I knew I was going to do it and while it could have been much more destructive then it was. It could have kept gping on. I did eat 2pcs of rye toast and deep fried potato bites with a tiny bit of ketchup even. Now, I could have added fake juice and a pancake to the mix but I did not, small saving there.

So how did I rationalize this one? Easy when your tired and have been feeling not quite yourself  your excitotoxins in your brain wake up and let you know food, your old BFF is always there to pick me you and “help you out”.Like a bad news EX lover.

 So there you are, I confess. I feel much better to write it down and get it out there believe it or not.

So going forth, the old me would have been ashamed, down and hopeless. I would have just kept on the binge eating for days and given up the last months of my progress. But not this time. I ate it. It’s done.

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Forgive, forget and move forward.Each second, minute, hour, day is a
new start. A choice you can make to better yourself or self destruct.

This time I am going towards the better.I have been to rock-bottom so many times this time I choose to stay onward to the positive path to health.

Love yourself and accept the things that you can and can’t change and focus on the positive.

Recipe:Paleo Almond Flour Muffins – Master Base Recipe for any Flavor Muffin

 

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2-1/2 cups almond flour or almond meal
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened pumpkin puree, thawed winter squash puree, butternut squash puree, unsweetened apple sauce, or mashed very ripe banana
  • 2 tablespoons honey, agave nectar or maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil (melted)
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar (white or cider)
  • Optional Flavorings: 1 teaspoon extract (e.g., vanilla, almond), citrus zest, dried herbs (e.g., basil, dill), or spice (e.g., cinnamon, cumin)
  • Optional Stir-Ins: 1 cup fresh fruit (e.g., blueberries, diced apple) or ½ cup dried fruit/cacao nibs/chopped nuts/seeds
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line 10 cups in a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper or foil liners.
  2. In a large bowl whisk the almond flour, baking soda and salt (whisk in any dried spices or herbs at this point, if using).
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, pumpkin, honey, oil and vinegar (add any extracts or zest at this point, if using).
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring until blended. Fold in any optional stir-ins, if using.
  5. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 14 to 18 minutes until set at the centers and golden brown at the edges. Move the tin to a cooling rack and let muffins cool in the tin 30 minutes. Remove muffins from tin.

 

Source: http://bit.ly/1t3unm8 – http://www.powerhungry.com

One fish, Two Fish…..Eat your Fish!

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Everyone talks about how good fish is supposed to be for you all the Omega 3’s and fish oils it contains and with all of the now sustainable fishing practices I thought it might be time to try out something new. I just wanted to add that Wild caught fish is of course the best choice as it is raised without the use of hormones and antibiotics but if you are in a budgetary limit or can’t find it locally use what you can is my modo. Onwards we go, fish (without breading) is something that I can honestly say that I have never eaten before cooked at least. I omit sashimi which is raw of course and I love!

I read a little online about how the average household only consumes about 15lbs of fish and seafood a year! The answer to why more people did not take advantage of the renewable resource seems to be mainly cooking education! Allot of people don’t know how to cook fish or what to do with it.

Last night I decided to grab a couple of different fillets at the seafood counter at my local grocer. So many choices, I really have no clue what the heck I’m going to do, but I go for it. One wild sole, a farmed rainbow trout and a Wild salmon fillet. I get the fish home and unwrap it. I give a deep sniff to the flesh. If a fillet smells fishy, it’s not fresh. These fillets are the epitome of perfection and now to do them justice! A quick google and I’m on my way. I mix a little olive oil, some fresh Garlic and a squeeze of fresh lemon then into the oven at 450 for 15 minutes. Fish cooks fast and I have learned is done when you press a spoon onto the flesh and it flakes, if you press down and it doesn’t and still has a little resistance to spring back Check it again in about 2 minutes.

How easy was that? I even cooked it on tinfoil and rolled it up when done. Super fast clean up bonus!

The result was perfectly cooked fresh fish. I served it with a baked sweet potato and steamed broccoli. The sole was a very mild taste but I didn’t really like the earthy aftertaste it left in my mouth. The rainbow trout was amazing! Mild and sweet almost like a snow crab. The salmon was great as well more of a medium taste and my daughter love this one, who knew! Next time I’m going to try some different fillets again some tuna steak, red snapper and catfish caught my eye last night so I will try them out next week.

So in conclusion try something new, something out of you comfort zone and you might just find a new favorite dish!

Recipe: Paleo Perfect Holiday Stuffing

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Ingredients:

1lb ground pork
2 cups diced onion
2 cups diced red pepper
4 cups diced portabello mushrooms
2 cups diced apples
1/2 cup cranberries
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tbsp coconut flour
4 tbsp poultry seasoning
4 eggs
1/4 of stock or water
1 tbsp Coconut oil
Sea salt to taste

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a large skillet add 1 tbsp of coconut oil and fry pork until browned.
3. Remove pork and drain fat, then place in a large bowl.
4. Add 1 tbsp of coconut oil to pan and cook onions and red peppers for 4 minutes. When done place in large bowl with pork.
5. Add 1 tbsp of coconut oil to pan and add mushrooms. Cook for 5 minutes and then add to pork mixture.
6. Add apples, cranberries, pecans, eggs, coconut flour, poultry seasoning, sea salt and water or stock to the pork mixture and mix well.
7. Place in an oven safe dish with cover  and cook for one hour.
8. Take out of oven and give one final stir let sit 10 minutes.
9. Enjoy!

 

 

A Past Paleo Adventure-Our Trip to Great Wolf Lodge

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So after we completed The Whole 30 the first time in 2015, it was time to pay up. The bribe for my daughters diligence was a trip to the GWL for 3 days!

 

 

 

As everyone knows the minute you leave your house, away from your paleo stash, you risk getting into a myriad of bad choices especially if you don’t plan ahead. I used to rationalize that vacations are for eating whatever you want. This is NOT even a option for us anymore. I don’t want to feel awful, I want to eat my whole foods!

So time to plan, the GWL has a fridge in the rooms as well as a microwave, that’s all I need to reheat all the healthy dinners that we need. I get the cooler out the night before and start the cook-a-thon!

Here is what we took 3 days :

  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Grapefruit
  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Grapes
  • Oranges
  • Dates
  • Figs
  • Ham
  • Chicken breast on mixed salads
  • Pork chops, potatoes with brocolli
  • Baked Ham, potatoes with cauliflower
  • Coconut milk
  • Coconut water
  • Cashews
  • Scrambled egg patties
  • Paleo banana pancakes with sausage
  • Perrier water
  • Paleo fruit leather
  • Mixed veggies
  • Salsa and guacamole
  • Paleo tortilla chips

Wow! That’s a list! But oddly not huge amounts and it fit nicely in one cooler. Since it’s winter , Canada, and -10c outside I just put the cooler outside for the night…. Lol!

In the morning we were all set to go! All loaded up, black coffee in hand I think to myself… I am doing this. We are do this!! Healthy eating is something we can stick to no matter what!

We get to the GWL and check in. We have a great time the next 3 days and not once go off plan.

Now one thing I do have to comment on is the almost non-existent presence of healthy food. The only things I saw that were healthy choices was a fruit cup, a veggie cup and a couple of salads. The cafe has so much sugar I could smell it coming off of the elevator and forget the buffet.

We had purchased a pawpass for my daughter and one of the items included was 1/4 lb of fudge. My husband asked if we could switch it to a healthier option and the girl looked at him as if he was crazy. With not many options I suggest a juice box ( this even was not great in my eyes) then the girl starts to make a fuss…. I just burst out with the word allergy and the deal is done. 1 juice box acquired, my daughter is ecstatic for the “juice”. Lol. As we are leaving,  the girl says that maybe my daughter would enjoy cotton candy instead of the juice?  I flash a look of confusion and politely say no thanks. The look I get back is priceless. It is a look of pity, like I’m so awful to my child because I am denying her sugar and junk food.

Well if that’s what it takes, I will take the title if worst parent ever in society’s eyes. I’m fine with that.

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Moving on, the rest of the trip goes off without a hitch and the ride home is quiet. We are all out of food and a bit hungry so a quick stop at the grocery store fixes us up. We grab some bananas, apples and nuts and we are good till home.

I’m no longer worried about travelling and staying on plan, and if you ever find yourself without anything to eat, the grocery store is always a safe bet. Most towns always have one and the variety will always suit exactly what you need.

Until next time, Happy paleo travels friends!

www.greatwolflodge.com

Recipe: Paleo Strawberry Jam

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Ingredients:

1 lb. fresh strawberries
1/2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp. honey
1 1/2 tsp gelatin powder unflavoured

Directions:

1. Cut the tops off of the strawberries  then slice the strawberries in half. Put the strawberries, lemon juice and honey in a small saucepan and place over medium-high heat.

2. Allow the mixture to boil lightly for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once the strawberries are softened, start mashing the mixture with a potato masher or a whisk until it reaches your desired consistency (mash less for chunkier jam and mash more for a smoother jam)

3.Remove the pan from the heat, add the gelatin and stir until well combined.

4. Transfer the mixture to a jar and allow the cool for about 15-20 minutes. Place the lid on the jar and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Great on yonanas or mixed in with coconut milk. Experiment and find your favorite!

It will last about one week in the refrigerator.

 

Recipe: Paleo Brownie Bites

 

 

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Ingredients:

1/3 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 ripe banana
2 eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/4 cup honey
Walnuts (optional)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients amx mix together making sure to blend all the lumps out.
3. Mash the banana
4. In another bowl combine the mashed banana and rest of wet ingredients. Mix until well blended.
5. Mix together wet and dry ingredients until well blended.
5. Line a cookie sheet with parchment and using a cookie scoop place the mixture on the sheet. Should make 15 or so brownies.
6. If using walnuts place a few on top of each mound.
7. Place in oven and bake for 15 minutes.

The Danger in “Just a little taste”

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We have all been there, whether a small slip of a few nibbles of fries or a piece of cake. Treating yourself once in awhile may seem like an ok thing to do on a special occasion or a “cheat day”, I, personally, cannot have those days.

One taste, and I’m off the wagon so easily and before I know it I’m being dragged down the road and the cart has ran over me and I see it leaving in the distance. The problem being that I am a recovering junk food addict.

I’m fully willing to admit that I have a problem. I’m like a drug or alcohol addict when it comes to junk food. I will hide it from family and friends, binge, and whatever else I can to eat the fatty, sugar laden frankenfoods. Then I regret, feel awful and my self esteem plummets. Then I’m back to square one.

The problem in addition to all this, is that food is easier to attain. It is socially acceptable to buy junk, it’s cheaper, you can easily binge at a buffet and over indulge at a sugar laden event. If you abstain, you are met with questions and offers to share or get you something different, then it turns it to a big show and if your not strong enough in your journey then you can relapse quite easily.

This article here Fatty foods may cause cocaine-like addiction is a really eye opening read.

The ingredients in purified modern food cause people to “eat unconsciously and unnecessarily,” and will also prompt an animal to “eat like a drug abuser [uses drugs],” says Wang.

For me personally, I have realized I can’t. Not even once. I don’t care if it makes people uncomfortable, makes them feel awkward about their own habits or inconviences them. Not anymore. It’s something I need to be selfish about and I perfectly fine with that after a long life of giving in.

Another thought when you are starting out, say you do slip and have a slice of cake or a nibble of something you shouldn’t.

 

JUST STOP.

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It’s easy to rationalize that you have destroyed your progress by slipping and then assure yourself that’s it’s okay to keep going and start again tomorrow. I know it’s hard to stop, but the mental damage will be far greater then the physical damage your doing. Sure it’s not great to introduce sugar back, it any stall your weigh loss for a few days while your body sorts it out, but often the guilt you feel from slipping is usually more then enough punishment. If you have the slip, get it over with and move on then, don’t wait till tomorrow.

This is where planning ahead is key. Eat before you go, take snacks that you can have, make a dish to bring. Don’t put yourself in a bad situation to start. Many restaurants have online menus to look at before you go so you can pick a dish to suit you prior to arrival, then you won’t be faced with making a quick choice when you arrive. If you find yourself in a city where you don’t know where to eat the grocery store or farmers market is a great choice.

Wherever you are in your life or journey it’s never to late to start now. Don’t wait for a healthier you to pass by and just grab it by the hand and get out of the way of the junk cart.

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Review: Yonana’s -Healthy Dessert Maker

 

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One thing I missed when I started eating paleo was icecream and dairy. My daughter and husband are allergic to dairy anywayso it was not always in the house.

I was shopping my local grocery store and I came upon an odd little machine that I had never seen before called a Yonanas machine seen here @ www.yonanas.com   It makes frozen dessert resembling ice cream but only using fresh, frozen fruits! The cost was about $39.99 cdn and the box looked promising. What did I have to lose, I could always return it. If it did work, I would be the hero of my family 🙂

Off I went Yonanas maker in hand and when I got home it was a quick set up process and then I decided to make one with banana and cherries. The fruit must be mostly frozen however I didn’t thaw it as much as recommended as I wanted to get that dessert pronto!

So half a banana first. In it went, grinding like a madman. The a handful of cherries and one more half of a banana. I see it start to come together in a frozen, creamy, symphony of fruit goodness. One final mix in the bowl and away we go!

 

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The next is the taste test. Sweet and amazing like a great frozen dessert and no sugar, no dairy and all paleo friendly. I feel good giving this to my daughter and I don’t even care if she eats a monster bowl.

You can also make slushes and sorbet with no banana at all. Pure mango is amazing! Here is a link to the site where you can find recipes and watch demos. Lots of great info too. I highly recommend this amazing product you’ll go ape over it 😉

www.yonanas.com