“Hold On To That Feeling…”

Can you read that title of today’s blog post without hearing Journey in your head? What feeling am I trying to hold onto? Winter. Cool air. A little nip at my nose. Sadly here in the South, the winters are short. The summers are long, fall is pretty short, winter is pretty short, spring is pretty short. Summer is looong. I cannot stand the heat. And boy does it get hot here. What upsets me are all the people who complain when it is 100 degrees outside with 90% humidity, and then get upset when it is cool in the winter or fall and “cannot wait for summer.” You cannot complain about it being hot! You asked for it! I never ask for it. Trying to keep that cool weather in mind, I made a Winter Beef Stew for supper this week. There is a Paleo version and a Weight Watchers version. For the Paleo version, you simply make the stew and eat. For the WW version, you serve it over egg noodles. I will give the pictures and recipe for both. This was simple to make, the hardest part was waiting the hour and a half for it to cook before you could eat it. Most of the ingredients will be in any well stocked pantry. Things that you will not have on hand will be the beef, maybe carrots, and mushrooms if you choose to add them (which I did). This turned out super yummy and tasted even better the next day!

Winter Beef Stew

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients:

1/2 tsp coconut oil

1 pound(s) uncooked lean trimmed sirloin beef, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

2 tsp coconut oil

1 large uncooked red onion(s), cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices

2 clove(s) garlic clove(s), peeled, smashed

5 tsp red wine vinegar

1 leaf/leaves bay leaf

3 sprig(s) fresh thyme

1⁄2 tsp table salt

1⁄4 tsp black pepper

1 cup(s) apple juice

1 cup(s) beef broth

2 medium uncooked carrot(s), thinly sliced

2 Tbsp fresh parsley, minced

Instructions:

  • Coat a large nonstick heavy-bottom pot 1/2 tsp coconut oil; heat over medium-high heat for 30 seconds. Add beef; brown beef about 2 minutes per side. Remove beef from pot; set aside.
  • Heat 2 tsp coconut oil in same pot. Add onion and garlic; cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in vinegar, bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper. Pour in apple juice, and stir up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. Add broth; bring to a simmer. Add carrots and beef, cover pot and reduce heat to low; simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Remove bay leaf and thyme sprigs.
  • To serve, sprinkle with parsley. Serving size: 1 cup stew.

If making the WW version use:

2 cup(s) cooked egg noodles, kept hot

To serve, spoon noodles onto individual serving plates and top with stew; sprinkle with parsley. Serving size: 1 cup stew and 1/2 cup noodles.

This is 8 WW points with the new system.

I will have to add the pictures later since I cannot log into my account right now, but I will post them later tonight. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did!

 

 

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A Visit from Family and Salisbury Steak

**NOTE** I tried posting this a couple of weeks ago, and it did not go through. I am hoping that it will post today! Sorry for the delay!

I hope you all enjoyed your long weekend! I know I did! My mom came to Auburn and we got to have a girl’s weekend. We did nothing but shop, eat, watch movies, shop some more, watch a few more movies… needless to say, it was a lazy, fun weekend! We had a blast! I took her to a local spot to eat named Niffer’s Place where they have awesome burgers, Cajun tots, and corn nuggets! It was delicious. She had never been there before, so she was in for a real treat. Everyone we knew was so jealous! We also went to Hobby Lobby and got new coloring books and colored pencils, so that was a lot of fun! We watched several movies, War Room, which I HIGHLY recommend. It was amazing. If you have not seen it, go and rent it tonight! It will change your life. I want my own war room now. We also watched Ted 2, which I was disappointed in. There was so much language that was just not needed, there was no nudity until the end and it was uncalled for, and there was just not a good storyline. Disappointed is an understatement. My mom had not seen Trainwrecked, so we watched that, and then Saturday night we watched The Martian. It was excellent! It was nowhere as good as the book, but are they ever? The book is hilarious. I laughed and laughed at the book. The movie was just okay as far as humor went. But overall the movie was terrific. I thought they did a good job of portraying the novel. We both loved it. I cannot wait to watch it with my dad.

Last week I made a wonderful recipe. It was for Salisbury Steak. Now, the Salisbury Steak that I usually make or have eaten in the past has been slathered in a nice yummy gravy. This recipe was more like a tomato pasta sauce. But, it was just as yummy, maybe even more so! I am so excited to share this recipe with you. I did not follow the recipe exactly as it called for, and I will let you know what I did differently, but it turned out so terrific, that I will probably do it the same next time as well. I got the recipe from Laughing Spatula and their Salisbury Steak Whole30 compliant section. So, here we go!

Salisbury Steak

1 pound ground beef – I used 85/15

1 egg

2 garlic cloves, finely minced

Salt and pepper

1 thinly sliced yellow onion

1½ cups sliced mushrooms

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup beef broth

Salt and pepper

Instructions
  1. Add beef, egg, garlic, salt and pepper together in bowl and combine well.
  2. Shape into 4 patties.
    1. I had patties that I had already made beforehand. I simply cooked them without the egg in the garlic with salt and pepper. That was one change I made.
  3. Heat non-stick skillet over medium high heat.
  4. Add beef patties to skillet.
  5. Cook 3-4 minutes per side until a nice crust forms.
  6. Remove patties from pan and set aside. (they will not be fully cooked but will continue to cook in sauce)
  7. Add onions and mushrooms to skillet – sauté for about 5 minutes.
    1. I used diced onions, not sliced. I actually liked them a lot better.
  8. Add tomato paste and beef broth to onion mushroom mixture.
  9. Stir until nice thick sauce forms.
  10. Season with salt and pepper.
  11. Add patties back to pan, cover and cook in sauce until cooked through. About 10 minutes.
  12. If sauce is to thin – you may uncover skillet until reduced to desired consistency.

Sadly, I do not have a picture because my photos got deleted off of my phone, but trust me… it was wonderful! This is a keeper! Have a wonderful day everyone!

~ A

 

 

Paleo Goes French

I am so sorry that it took me so long to get back on the blog. I had in mind to “Blog Like Crazy,” but so many things happened lately. First was the beach, and that was a fun filled time with us being pretty much on the go the entire time. We went for almost a week and went to a car show. We are car show people. We go for weekend events, just the day, or a week. It is fun for our entire family. We were also able to do lots of shopping while we were gone. One thing that I got while we were gone was an adult coloring book. No, not That kind of adult, get your mind out of the gutter! The adult coloring books where the designs are intricate and detailed. They are beautiful pictures and are made to relax you when you are stressed. I stay stressed and anxious quite a bit, so I am hoping this will help. I have OCD, so I do worry a little with them. When I was a kid I would buy lots of coloring books and never color in them. I was too worried that I was going to make a mistake, so I would never color in them at all. I have already started one picture, so it has gone well so far. I still worry over the colors and combinations, but I am trying to let that go.

We also had my birthday in November and Thanksgiving. I am a girl who has her birthday on Thanksgiving every so many years and that is a lot of fun. We were super busy with the Thanksgiving holidays. I did plenty of shopping on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Did you? I have all my Christmas shopping done, so it was mostly for movies, TV series, and a few extra surprises for my sister. Just fun goodies that I wait to buy every year until this time. Some of my favorites were Modern Family, The Big Bang Theory, Criminal Minds, Mad Men, Pretty Little Liars, Homeland, and True Blood. I cannot wait to find a free moment to watch some of these. Modern Family, Criminal Minds, Big Bang, and Pretty Little Liars I have already watched, I was just getting them to complete my series at home. I have not seen the last season of True Blood, any of Homeland, and some of the Mad Men episodes. Did y’all get any goodies on sale? Do you prefer Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, or Cyber Monday?

I am sorry to ramble on. I am sure you do not want to hear all about my shopping! I just love looking at you as my friends and updating on what is going on in my life. Oh! And how can I forget, one of the most wonderful days of the year happened the Saturday after Thanksgiving! The Iron Bowl! This is an annual event that sets the year for an entire fan base. It can make the next year happy or terrible. This is the game where Auburn plays their biggest rival and it means everything to the people in this state (and literally in many cases around the globe). The good guys, Auburn, have not had a great season this year. It made me sad as a fan, but I will stand by my team and coach no matter what. Our guys had nothing to lose, so I just wanted them to go out and play with all they had. I lucked up and on Friday night while I was in the theater watching Mockingjay Part 2 (great movie), I got a text saying my friend had an extra free ticket and asked if I wanted to go to the game! Of course I did! I was so excited to see an Iron Bowl from inside Auburn’s stadium, not matter what the outcome. I had a blast and yelled and screamed, and at times, booed. It would have only been better had we won. I am so thankful for friends who thought of me and offered me that ticket.

But on to why you probably got to this blog. I have a confession to make. Since I have been at the beach and having Thanksgiving, and now leading up to Christmas I have not been following a strict Paleo diet. I have gained a few pounds, but I have been maintaining the past month. I need to get back on it ASAP, but I think I am going to try and follow it semi closely, and hit it hard again after Christmas. In the meantime, I am trying out new recipes. This one is a favorite with Julia Child and from the movie Julie and Julia. I made a crockpot version of Beef Bourguignon. It was amazing and delicious, and so very simple. I know in the instructions it tells you to sear the meat, and sauté the onions, etc., but to me that defeats the purpose of the crockpot. I simply put everything in the pot and let it cook for 8 hours on low while I was at work. Easy peasy. I found the recipe on my favorite standard, Pinterest, but I am sure you can find similar recipes all over the internet. This particular recipe came from Buzzfeed. You can find the article here along with 32 other delicious Paleo crockpot recipes. I plan on using this list quite a bit! Here is what I did:

Beef Bourguignon

I placed in the crockpot

2 lbs. cut up beef stew meat

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 large carrots, sliced

1 bag of little baby onions (or pearl onions if  you can find them), I cut them in half

Rosemary (it called for 2-3 sprigs, but I used dried)

2 bay leaves

1 tsp. Himalayan salt

1 tsp. freshly ground pepper

2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

2 cups bone broth

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 lb. (I went ahead and used an 8 oz. package) sliced mushrooms

2 Tbsp. tapioca starch

2 Tbsp. water

There are a lot of instructions on the website for how to carefully prepare all the ingredients. I was not that patient and did not have that much time, so here is what I did, and it turned out wonderful!

I added all the ingredients into the crockpot, with the exception of the tapioca starch and water. I then let the entire crockpot sit in the fridge overnight. The next morning I put the crock in the heating mechanism and let it cook on low for 8 hours. When I got home, I took out the bay leaves, you can take out the rosemary sprigs if you used them. I took the tapioca starch and water and mixed it together until blended and added it to the stew so it thickened. I then served it to my guests. Everyone really enjoyed it. Here are the humble beginnings and the finished result:

Beef 1 Beef

The result was wonderful, tender, juicy, and delicious. It was even better the next day! I cannot wait to try this one again.

Happy eating everyone!

 

~ A