Gladiator Rock N Run

I had an amazing Sunday.  It started early, which I know I know…  it’s a weekend, but it’s a mud run!!  YAY!!  Mud runs are fun!  Like I said, I had always wanted to be on American Gladiators or Gutz!, but never had the balls to go and do it.  Now I do!!  Mud runs!!  YAY!!

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So on Sunday with PaleoJoe and two lovely ladies, we ran the Gladiator Rock n Run at Grant Ranch in San Jose.  I like choosing the earliest wave time possible because it’s not so hot, the mud is clean, and I can get on with the rest of my day wearing a fancy medal around my neck.  😛

I made breakfast for the gang which consisted of chicken sausage, scrambled eggs and red grapes.  We left the house at around 730 and made it with about a half hour to spare prior to our wave time.

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Bag check, stretching, picture taking…

8:30 rolls around and we are at the starting line.  Dan “Nitro” Clark is at the stage and he’s talking to us and getting us pumped up for the run.  It’s good times.  We’re ready to go.  The first obstacle is “Hamburger Hill” and it’s a long ass steep hill that if you haven’t done hill training, will kick your ass.  The second obstacle is a really short tire obstacle.  Just run on through em.  Third obstacle is called “Tired Out”.  You have to lift and hold a tire over your head and do walking lunges.  It’s fine until about halfway when it’s down hill and you can feel the burn.  My arms and legs were jelly.

Fourth obstacle was Burpees.  Do ten of them.  Though when we got there, the guy told us to do 30, and by about 22 another guy came (the supervisor I think) and he says, “Oh you only have to do 10.”  WTF?!  Haha!  Oh well. Number five was “Polar Ice” and OMG…  COLD!  Lucky for us they weren’t dumping ice in there otherwise it would have been colder.  The shock of the cold made everything all tingly, but once you started moving again the cold felt really nice.

Sixth obstacle was…  Not sure.  Okay now I’m forgetting the obstacles, but there was a rope that you had to climb and ring the bell at the top.  “Buddha’s Burden” where you carry a bag of rice up and around and bring it back to Buddha.  “Wall of Shame” were you decide to climb up and over a 4′ tall pink wall or the 8′ wall.  I climbed the 8′ wall.  Dumpster climb where you climb into a dumpster and out.  I there there were two of those.  “Deadman Carry” where two people carry a third, then you climb over a tire wall, and then carry again.  “Tube Steak” where you climb over tubes, and then crawl through mud under barbed wire, through the tubs that you just climbed over, and then a mud crawl again.  Cargo net climb, jump over fire, incline wall (which I didn’t do, because it’s a pain the ass so I did burpees instead) and monkey bars.  Oh there was also a “Spider Walk” where you climb up a hill under a net and sometimes you can get your hand stuck or your hair if it’s in a bun.  There was one more mud crawl under barbed wire and then the very last obstacle was what I think was called “Team Woody”.  You need about 8 people to lift an 18-20 foot telephone pole up and walk it around and back.  I was too short to even really make a difference I think.  But I still helped!  Drop the pole and FINISH LINE!

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Shiny pretty medals gleaning in the morning sun and I am the proud owner of one.  🙂

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Oh we came out of it super muddy.  Shoes were ruined, hair a mess, tired, but proud.  Gladiator Rock n Run…  PWNED!

We got our bags from the check area and headed to the “showers” where we hosed off as much mud as we could.  I changed into a maxi dress and POW!  Picture time with my favorite man…

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It was about 11 when we left the race and 1130 when we got back to my place.  Everyone left about 12 to shower and eat.  Funtastic Sunday morning!  Yeah sleeping in would have been nice, but how many people can say they swam in mud on Father’s Day and got a medal for it?  🙂

Roasted Pork Ribs

There was a sale on pork ribs the other day at the grocery store and so I took the opportunity and bought myself a package.  I think the last time I had ribs was two months ago.  They were… okay.  The meat didn’t fall off the bone.  I don’t think it was cooked long enough for it to do so.  I didn’t cook em so I’m only guessing.  It may have been for a birthday party now that I think about it.

I judge how good a rib is by how easy it is for me to tear the meat off.  If all I need are my hands and my teeth then I’m good.  I also don’t like a lot of sauce on my rib.  I tend to wipe it off.  Dry rubs are okay, but I’ve come across ribs that have too much salt.  I didn’t want to taste salt.  I wanted to taste the meat.  Picky picky picky.

Anyhoo… I don’t have a grill at my place so I had to settle for roasting it in the oven.  I seasoned the ribs with Montreal Seasoning and Lawry’s Seasoning Salt.  That’s about it.  Simple.  Here’s how to do it…

 

ROASTED PORK RIBS

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2.  Season your meat.

3.  Place in roasting pan.

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4.Put in oven and cook for 1 hour.

5.  After an hour flip and cook for one more hour.

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6.  DONE!!  Take the meat out of the oven and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

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7.  Cut and serve!

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Since it was slow cooked, the meat was tender and came off the bone easily.  The only time I needed a knife was to cut off my portion for dinner.  If you are a BBQ sauce lover then I suggest putting the sauce on the meat at least 5-10 minutes prior to the end of cook time.  Slather it on both sides and it should have a nice glaze by the time it’s done.  I don’t have a recipe for Paleo friendly BBQ sauce at the moment, but now that I’m thinking about it I want to make one.  Stay tuned for a future post!  🙂

Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs with a side of Broccoli

Last week I took the kids to the grocery store and I asked them what they wanted to eat for dinner.  They said that they wanted chicken and bacon and rice.  I told them that they had to pick a vegetable and so they chose broccoli.  When I’m cooking with the kids I like to try and have them help as much as they can.  If one is off washing dishes while the other is helping me season the dish then that works too!

For this recipe there really isn’t much to it.  It’s a very simple recipe.  You know me by now…  Bacon is my favorite flavoring!  😛

 

BACON WRAPPED CHICKEN THIGHS and BROCCOLI

Ingredients:

1 head of broccoli (chopped into pieces)

1 package of uncured bacon

1 pound of chicken thighs

3-4 tablespoons of Coconut oil or butter

Seasoning (salt, pepper, parsley, etc.  Whatever you like!)

Directions:

1.  Grab your pans and preheat them on the stove at medium high heat.

2.  In one pan, put the butter or oil and let it melt.

3.  Toss in the broccoli and cook til it is at the tenderness that you like.  I would say about 7-10 minutes.  (I like to season my broccoli after it’s been cooked that way I can give it a taste and if it needs more seasoning I add more.  I usually just salt and pepper it.  Sometimes for a kick I’ll add chili or cayenne powder, and sometimes even red pepper flakes.)

4.  While your broccoli is cooking, season the thighs and then wrap in bacon.  Try and make sure you have the ends of the bacon meet on the same side.

5.  Place your meat seam side down onto the pan and cook on all sides until the bacon has browned and crispied up.  This will be about 15-20 minutes of cook time.

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6.  When all is said and done, plate up your food all fancy and take pictures!  I mean…  serve and enjoy!

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Bacon Brussel Sprouts and Yam

A couple months ago I had never had a brussel sprout.  I knew what they were, but I had never tried one.  Anytime someone describes the taste or brussel sprouts they say it’s gross and soggy and gross!  That might be why I had avoided them for so long.

Then I met PaleoJoe and for dinner one day his Mom made roasted brussel sprouts.  She explained that yes, depending on how you cook them they can get soggy and gross, but if you cook them right they’re crunchy and delicious.  I had her brussel sprouts and I liked em!  They’re just mini cabbages.  What was I afraid of?

For this recipe I decided to cook the brussel sprouts with bacon fat and when all is said and done, sprinkle the bacon bits over the finished product.  It gives it that much more flavor AND you’re using all of your food.  No tossing the bacon fat in the garbage, use it!

 

BACON BRUSSEL SPROUTS AND YAM

Ingredients:

2 strips of uncured bacon (diced)

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1/2 pound to 1 pound of brussel sprouts (washed, drained and cut in half)

1 medium yam/sweet potato (cut into the same size as the brussel sprouts or smaller)

salt and pepper

 

Directions:

1.  Grab a oven proof skillet big enough to fit all of your ingredients and put it on the stove to heat up on medium high heat.  Note: If you do not have an oven proof skillet then a baking sheet/dish will work fine.  Just trying to cut down on your dish washing.

2.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

3.  Throw your diced bacon into the skillet and cook until crispy.

4.  Take bacon out of pan and set aside.  Turn off stove

5.  Put brussel sprouts and yam into the skillet.  Toss them so that they’re evenly covered with the bacon grease. (If using a separate baking dish then after you toss the veggies in the bacon grease, pour them into the baking dish.)

6.  Season with salt and pepper.

7.  Put skillet/baking dish in oven and cook for 15 – 20 minutes or until the veggies are to your desired level of cooked-ness.

8.  Take veggies out of oven and serve!!  Don’t forget to sprinkle on some those bacon bits for added texture!

Brussel Sprouts and Yam

Additions:  You can always add more to this dish if you like.  Perhaps dicing up a couple cloves of garlic and letting it roast with your veggies in the oven.  How about a small onion?  Fresh herbs are always a great way to go.  Oh and if you don’t want to cook with bacon grease then olive oil or coconut oil works just fine.  Entirely up to you.  This is just a guideline.  If you want to make it your own then I say go for it!  ENJOY!

Stanford Dish & Arms Day at the Gym

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It was a beautiful day yesterday here in California.  PaleoJoe and I have a friend who we like to work out with at Gold’s Gym and prior to picking him up from work we stopped at the Stanford Dish.

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We’ve been here once before and the loop is easy, but hilly.  It will definitely challenge you.  The main entrance has a guard house to make sure that no one is biking on the trail, no one brings their dog, and to kick people out at 8 when the trail closes.  Apparently security even drives along the trail to make sure that people aren’t shenaniganizing.  Not that it’s a bad neighborhood or anything, but it’s Stanford and they have equipment on this trail that they don’t want people to tamper with.  That’s my guess.

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There are a lot of people on this trail so no worries about getting harassed.  There’s a lot of ground squirrels, birds, and the occasional deer family.  Apparently it is also mountain lion country so keep an eye out.

After one loop on the trail we headed to our friend’s place of work and picked him up so we could go to the gym.  Tuesday is usually arms day when we go to Gold’s Gym because there’s a tricep machine that  PaleoJoe loves.  Says he really feels the burn when he uses it.  I took it easy and went about 5 lbs lighter on some exercises because I was feeling tired, and once during the set I felt dizzy.  Towards the end I was getting hungry.  Thinking back on it now, I think we did more tricep exercises than biceps.

I could be wrong…

Anyhoo…  I had my two gym buddies standing by to watch for signs of fatigue and struggle so I was good to go.  I didn’t overdo it.  I hydrated every other set and since there were three of us there was a longer rest period.  Staying fit and fabulous!

Grilled Tilapia

Massive craving for fish yesterday after the back workout at the gym yesterday.  PaleoJoe had defrosted chicken, which sounded great at the time, but after 45 minutes of back and then 1 mile on the treadmill I wanted something else.  TILAPIA!

So after the gym we headed to MOM’s and picked up a whole tilapia.  Again, when choosing fish make sure that the eyes are bright, the body has no cuts or bruising and still looks pretty, and it doesn’t smell.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about then ask the fish guy/gal.  They will help you pick the right one.  Also, if they offer fish cleaning services where you get your seafood then definitely take the opportunity and have them do it.  For this fish, we had them gut it, scale it and lop off the fins.  POW!  Here’s the recipe for…

 

GRILLED TILAPIA

Ingredients:

1 whole tilapia (cleaned)

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1 lemon (sliced)

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Handful of fresh Basil (you can keep it whole or chop it up.  Entirely up to you.  I would also recommend fresh Rosemary or Thyme.)

Salt and Pepper to taste

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Directions:

1.  Preheat your grill to medium high heat.  Charcoal grill should be about the same.  You don’t want high heat.  You’ll burn the fish and that’s sad.

2.  Season the inside of your fish with salt and pepper.  Place a layer of basil down and then the lemon slices and then another layer of basil over that.  I just so happened to have some lemon slices leftover so I squeezed the juice over both sides of the fish.  Season both sides of the fish with salt and pepper.

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3.  By now, your grill is preheated so take your fish on over and lay it on the grill.

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I know…  the picture is dark.  It’s a terrible picture, but you get it right?

4.  Put the cover down and LEAVE THE FISH ALONE!  You’re going to let it cook for 12-15 minutes.  When it’s time, FLIP!  Wait another 12-15 minutes and you’re done!

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We ate the fish with a side of fresh diced tomatoes (Lemon Boy and Early Girl) from the garden.  I put about 3 tablespoons of patis (fish sauce) and mixed it.  Sometimes I overestimate how much seasoning is on the fish and I’m left with an under seasoned fish.  Whoops!  Having the tomatoes with the patis helps.  Super tasty!  Prior to Paleo I would eat this with a side of rice, but ah well.  ENJOY!!

Blogging Vacation

Is there such a thing as a blogging vacation?  Or is it more like, I got a bit lazy and didn’t feel like writing about anything.  It’s not that I wasn’t doing anything.  Actually, PaleoJoe and I had participated in two races:

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The first run was a 5-miler in San Jose called the San Jose Giant Race.  It was pretty hot that morning, but we powered through and I believe we got in at a little over an hour.  I saw a bunch of my runner friends at the race so I was pretty excited.

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The second race was called Jeremy and Juliet’s Fun Run, and I would have to say that this was the funnest race I had ever been in.  My Baby Sister and the kids had put together this race.  The goal was to run 13.1 miles and after each mile we would do some kind of obstacle or game.  That ended up not happening.  We were able to go about 6 miles and did two to three obstacles towards the end.  There was a three legged race, math quiz, limbo and a slip and slide!  The final mile had the kids and Baby Sister following us on their bikes with a speaker blasting “Eye of the Tiger” as we jogged.  Super fun!  We even got shirts, a swag bag, and a medal!  YAY!

My son is no longer in school.  His last day was on Friday.  I picked him up and handed him a slurpee when he got in the car.  I know, not Paleo, but it’s my Boo and he can have what he wants.  That morning he had dressed up.

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And since he was dressed up, my Little Miss decided she wanted to dress up as well.

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For breakfast he wanted donuts and I was happy to oblige.

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It just so happened to be National Donut Day so it was kind of fitting.

The rest of the week was interesting to the say the least.  I will be blogging about it later and will most likely be creating another page for it.  I’m still trying to workout this blogging system and if anyone wants to help that would be fantastic.  Like…  Can I create a page in the blog for my recipes and just transfer the entries into that page?  They’re in categories right now, but I want to be able to create links for them all so that it’s easier to find.  Like an index or something.  Oh I’ll figure it out.

Anyhoo…  the next race is the Gladiator Rock n Run which was created by Dan “Nitro” Clark from the American Gladiators.  I ran this last year and the only thing that kicked my ass was the hill at the beginning of the race.  I know that I need to train on hills more, but I just dislike them.  I’ll do it I’ll do it.

Speaking of hills, I registered for the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco again this year.  This time I signed up to run the full marathon.  I’ve been wanting to take on the challenge of a full marathon since I started running back in August 2011, but didn’t think I had the cajones to do it.  I’m gonna attempt to do it this year.  It’ll be a nice birthday present to myself.  🙂

I’ll be posting some recipes later on this week.  We still have some offal in the freezer that we haven’t gotten to yet.

Until Next Time…

 

BBBBRRRRAAAAIIIINNNNSSSSS!

 

Well, PaleoJoe and I are officially zombies.  Yesterday for our post-workout meal we had pork brains with a side of our home made kimchi and watermelon juice.  I had posted last week, a picture of the different organs that we had purchased and for today’s recipe we are going to be working with the brain.

This brain was kinda weird.  As it is our first time working with this type of meat I don’t know if we handled it correctly, or if we did everything perfectly.  We looked online at various websites on how to prepare and cook the brain.  Apparently they’re not so uncommon in the southern states and will come canned with some kind of gravy.  Didn’t look very appetizing at all. Oh and tell me why I kept thinking of this guy the entire time I was looking up recipes:

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HA!!

Anyhoo…  Since it was too hot to make a stew and we didn’t have enough vegetables for a stir-fry, we ended up using seasoned coconut flour to bread it and fried it in leftover bacon fat from an earlier breakfast.  Here’s the recipe…

 

BREADED PORK BRAIN

Ingredients:

1lb pork brain

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1/4 cup of coconut flour

Seasoning (Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder, Fresh chopped basil)

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Bacon Fat or Oil (EVOO or Coconut Oil.  Whichever you like to cook with.  Butter will work as well.)

 

Directions:

1.  Soak brain in cold water for 1-2 hours.

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2.  In a large enough pot, put the brain in with enough water to cover it and put it on the stove on high heat.  Bring it to a boil and when it does, turn the heat down to simmer.  Let simmer for 3-5 minutes.

3.  Drain water and cut to however large pieces you want.  (To be honest, I think since ours was frozen it kind of fell apart.  We didn’t have to do much cutting, but just in case yours stays together, then cut it.)

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4.  Preheat frying pan on medium high heat with your cooking oil/butter.

5.  I’m going to assume that you know to let your meat cool down before handling.  Carefully take your pieces of brain and roll them in the flour.

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6.  Place pieces on the pan and cook for about 5-7 minutes, or until it’s a golden brown.  (PaleoJoe says that the pieces were soft and flimsy so he had to use a fork to carefully flip them.)

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7.  Plate and SERVE!!

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Again, we had them with a side of our homemade kimchi and fresh watermelon juice.  (PaleoJoe tossed a couple of pieces in a blender and hit puree.)  I’m not sure if the brain is supposed to be soft, but that’s what it was.  Soft.  The breading on the outside gave it the teeniest of crunch, but the brain itself was very soft.  What did it taste like?  I don’t know if I can explain it.  It wasn’t iron-y, it didn’t taste like pork, but there definitely was a taste to it.  I just can’t quite describe it.  I’ll ask PaleoJoe and see what his take on it was.

We’re going to try another brain recipe, preferably with a fresh brain, and see if there is any difference in texture and taste.  All in all, it wasn’t a bad experience.  We tried something new, and we will definitely try it again.  ENJOY!

Grass-fed Burgers

Whenever I pick my kids up from the babysitter’s place, I always ask them: “What do you want to eat for dinner?”  I usually get the same answers: “Chicken and rice!  Top Ramen with egg!” or the super gross: “MCDONALD’S!!”  I always tell them no, and I offer up alternatives.  I remind them that I will never take them to McDonald’s because that’s not REAL food.  They are saddened by this, but then perk up when I tell that that they’re going to help me make dinner.  They are always so very willing to help out in the kitchen and I love that.

So last night I sugested burgers for dinner and to my surprise they said yes.  My kids don’t normally like hamburgers.  They are more hot dog eaters and they very rarely eat sandwiches.  My girl would prefer to eat the meat separate from the bread, and my boy would rather eat the bread than the meat.  They’re weird, but whatever.

We stopped at Lucky’s for ingredients and to my happy surprise there was uncured bacon and grass-fed ground beef there.  YES!  They of course had organic vegetables so I put that in the basket as well.  15 minutes later and we were out of there.

Since my kids aren’t really on the Paleo Lifestyle like I am, I allowed them to have buns to hold their burger.  But not just any old boring buns!!  NOPE!!  I had made my own Garlic and Parsley Butter a couple of days ago and I spread it on some french bread slices and toasted it up.  Oh we fancy!!  😛

Here’s what you’re going to need for…

 

BURGERS

Ingredients:

1 lb of grass-fed ground beef

3 strips of uncured bacon (diced)

3-4 cloves of garlic (minced)

1 egg

Montreal Seasoning and Onion Powder (I kind of eyeballed it.  A tablespoon total perhaps?)

Directions:

1.  Put all of your ingredients in a bowl.

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2.  Get your 6 year old boy to wash his hands and squish away!!

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He thought that it was the grossest thing ever, but the smile on his face shows me that he thought it was fun.

3.  If you have a grill then fire it up!  If you’re like me and don’t have one, then get a pan and put it on the stove on medium high heat.  Add about 2-3 tablespoons of butter and let it melt.

4.  So the size of the patty depends on you.  Want a 1/2 pound of burger then divide the meat into two.  Want a 1/4 pounder?  or…

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HA!!  Well…  you get the picture.  Up to you!!

5.  When the pan/grill is hot, add the meat.  Let cook for 3-5 minutes on each side (or longer depending on how well you want it cooked.  I like mine rare.)

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6.  You can use the time that the patties are cooking to prep your fixins.  I had an avocado, a tomato, and iceburg lettuce.

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Now THAT’S a delicious burger if I ever saw one!!  I pretty much inhaled it.  It was juicy, flavorful, and of course Paleo friendly.  🙂

My kids enjoyed theirs as well.

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So again, it is entirely up to you what kind of fixins you want to add to your burger:   grilled onions or bell peppers, portobello mushroom, cheese (raw and unpasteurized if you’re Paleo), MORE BACON!  Up to you!  Make it your own.  I recommend serving this up with a side of sweet potato fries.  ENJOY!

Super Easy Chicken Stock

Do you know how easy it is to make chicken stock?  Any stock really.  All you need are bones and your aromatics.  As you can tell from the title, it’s a chicken stock recipe and believe me when I tell you that it is VERY easy.  You can even make this in your crock pot if you wanted to.  All you are going to need is leftover bones and skin from chicken.  Did you have a roasted chicken for dinner or lunch?  You can use those!  If you didn’t then a trip to your local butcher will work just as well.  They usually have leftover chicken parts that they have for sale or you could maybe get for free.  Usually the backs of chicken or even if they went so far as to de-boning a chicken.  Ask!  You can use chicken stock in a number of recipes.  Instead of boiling your noodles, rice or potatoes in water, why not try boiling it in stock?  It’ll add so much more flavor to your dish.

So here’s what you’re going to need for this recipe…

CHICKEN STOCK

Ingredients:

Leftover chicken bones and skin

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Celery

Onion

Carrot

Garlic

Herbs (Parsley, Rosemary, etc.  Whichever you have on hand.  Preferably fresh, but dry will work just as well.)

Salt and Pepper

 

Directions:

1.  Put chicken bones and skin into a large pot and cover it with water.  Add your aromatics and seasoning to the pot and turn stove to high.  Bring water to boil and as soon as it does, turn the heat down to a simmer.

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2. Place lid on pot and let it do it’s thing for 4 to 6 hours.

3.  Every so often you can skim the foam that appears on the surface of the liquid.

4.  After the 4-6 hours, take out the bones and strain the stock.  You can use cheesecloth or a paper towel lined sieve.  Discard the solids.  OR…  if you want to keep the solids, then at least take out the bones and using an immersion blender/blender you can blend the veggies into the stock.

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5.  All done!!  Store in your fridge for future use.  Please note that storage in the fridge is good for a week.  If you freeze the stock it is good for a month.  ENJOY!

 

Oh and to cook it in your crock pot/slow cooker all you have to do is throw everything in and set your temperature to Low (8-10 hours) or High (4-6 hours).  Then do #3-5.  🙂