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!  🙂

Tri-tip Meal Prep

If you have the opportunity and the storage capacity to purchase in bulk then I say do it.  Especially if there’s a sale or an amazing deal.  Once a month, PaleoJoe and I hit up our local egg ranch and purchase a large box of eggs, which we then boil up 30 at a time so that we have our breakfast for the week.  The rest are kept in storage.  Can’t really do this with most fruit or vegetables, but it’s always best to eat fresh anyway.  I think you’re safe with buying a week’s worth of produce as long as you make sure to eat it.

Here’s a link to a list of Freezable Foods.  Here’s another from Eating Well.  And just for kicks here’s another from Iowa State University.

The other day we had stopped at Smart and Final because they have tri-tip in bulk there.  You can just as easily purchase them at Costco, which is known for their bulk products, but a package of tri-tip at Smart and Final contains 5 two pound steaks.  I know that most people don’t normally purchase all that meat unless they’re have a BBQ party, but with a lot of dry seasoning and a few freezer bags you have easy access meat.

Here’s a breakdown of what we do when we get a bulk bag:

1.  Package is opened and the meat is placed into separate freezer bags.

2.  Season your meat.  Have a pre-made dry rub or seasoning?  Use that!  If you have multiple canisters or dried herbs and spices and you know what you like then do that.  Do this for each of the bags.

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3.  Rub the seasoning into the meat.

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4.  Seal up your bags and place them in the freezer.  Check out all that meat!!

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5.  When you’re thinking about firing up the grill then make sure you take out the bag a day prior so that it will defrost in time.

 

So now you’ve got your meat ready for the grill, or perhaps you would like to roast it in the oven, either way is fine.  For this steak it was cooked on a grill with a small smoker.  When the grill is at the right temperature and it’s not a fiery inferno, add your meat to the grill.

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The other day we had attended a festival called Boogie on the Bayou and there was a vendor selling these gems:

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It’s a mini smoker.  If you like to have the smokey flavor to your meat, whether it’s on a charcoal/wood grill or a propane grill, you can add this little canister and in a few minutes it will start smoking.  Just put the cover down and let it do its work.  Here’s a link to The Smoke Stack Company and they also have a facebook page.

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Now depending on how well you like to cook your meat (we like rare) you leave it on the grill for that amount of time.  When ours was ready it came out looking BEAUTIFUL!

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This was cooked up as a meal prep for the week.  2 pounds came out to 4 total meals with a side dish (Celeriac and Cauliflower Puree).  Just portion out everything in an appropriately sized container, seal and store in the fridge.  Just don’t forget to take it out before you go to work.  Super tasty meal to make you the envy of all your co-workers.  ENJOY!

Beef Roast with Mixed Vegetables

I am a big fan of making food that takes care of itself.  Roasts and Crock Pots are the best!  You season the food, you set the temperature, you set the timer (which is usually a couple of hours) and you walk away.  There’s no watching the food to make sure it’s not burning.  There’s no stirring, no tossing, no nada.  Just set it and forget it!

A couple of months ago, PaleoJoe and I had stopped at Lunardi’s and picked up a grass-fed beef roast.  We were planning on going to the gym, but wanted to get our food situation handled before heading over.  When we got to his place, we preheated the oven, seasoned the meat, and prepped the veggies.  Then just… say it with me now!! set it and forget it!  😛  I think I had gotten that line from some infomercial.  I can’t remember which one, but it stuck.  Very catchy.

The vegetables were a mix of random stuff around the house.  Bell peppers, onions, garlic, and asparagus.  I THINK there might be some butternut squash in there.  All pieces were cut to about the same size so that when we put them in the oven it would all cook evenly.  Please see recipe below…

 

BEEF ROAST WITH MIXED VEGETABLES

Ingredients:

2-4 pounds of grass fed beef (I’m sure there’s a specific cut, but I can’t remember.  It was tied in butcher’s twine.)

Seasoning (Use anything you like!  Just rub the seasoning all over.)

(Optional) Melted Ghee or Butter (You’re going to need a flavor injector for this.  See pic HERE.  PaleoJoe likes to inject his meat with butter or ghee.  Adds more flavor and it adds moisture.)

2-4 tablespoons of Coconut Oil

Mixed veggies (Up to you!!)

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2.  Now this part is optional, you don’t have to do it if you want.  I personally like to sear my meat because I like the crunch of the crust on the outside and then the tasty soft and moist innards.  Kind of like bread.  On high heat, put a cast iron grill or a stainless steel pan. (DO NOT use a pan with teflon on it, or any other non-stick pan that can not withstand high heat!  There are chemicals in teflon or in that non-stick pan you have, and that burns and gets into your food.  If you can, get rid of it and replace it!)  Put in 1-2 tablepoons of coconut oil and sear your meat on all sides.  Maybe 1 minute on each side or until you get nice browning.  More on this at the bottom of the post.

3.  In a baking sheet, put 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil so that your veggies do not stick.  Add veggies in one layer on pan and season to your heart’s content.

4.  Put pan in bottom level of oven and the roast goes in the middle right above that pan.

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5.  Oh yeah…  those meat drippings are going to fall onto that bottom pan and add some more flavor to your veggies.  Now set the timer for 1-1/2 to 2 hours (depending on size of meat and how cooked you want it to be.  PaleoJoe and I like our meat rare) and walk away.

6.  When the timer goes off, take meat out and put it on the veggie tray.  Let sit for 15 minutes.

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7.  Carve and serve!!

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In regards to the optional searing of the meat.  I do it, because I think it makes the meat look pretty when all is said and done.  I’ve read articles that say searing the meat prior to roasting will keep the moisture in.  I’ve read articles that say it doesn’t do squat, or there is very little difference in moisture levels.  If you want your meat to stay moist let it rest for at least 15 minutes.  While it’s resting the meat is going to continue cooking, and the moisture is going to redistribute and come to a rest in the meat.  You ever notice how you cut into meat right after it comes out of the heat and it’s all juicy and moist, but then once it’s all carved and you come to eat it, it’s dry?  All the juices have poured out and have been sucked into the cutting board right?  Put some olive oil or coconut oil on the cutting board.  That should help keep the juices from being sucked in the board.  Most importantly…  leave your meat alone!  Let it rest!  It just did its thing in the oven and now it’s tired.  Let it rest so that you can enjoy a juicy meaty bite.  Try it and let me know how it goes.

ENJOY!

Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps

Can I tell you how much I love the crock pot/slow cooker?  It’s an amazing invention.  You just throw all of the ingredients in, set the heat to what you want and then leave for work.  When you get home dinner is ready!  That’s a whole lotta time saved from meal prepping and it can now be used to do other things.

PaleoJoe and I were at Whole Foods the other day and we were just perusing the meat section and I saw that pork shoulder butt was on sale.  What a deal!  I got one and this is the recipe:

 

PULLED PORK LETTUCE WRAPS

Ingredients:

1 – Pork Shoulder Butt (bone in or boneless.  Doesn’t matter.  Also, get one that will fit the size crock pot that you have, or for how many people you are going to feed.)

1 onion (sliced in 1/8’s)

4-5 whole cloves of garlic (smashed)

1 small can of tomato paste (I was going to used diced tomatoes, but was out.  This works just as well.  You know what you can also use to give it a kick? Canned green chiles or even fresh chiles diced.  ooohhh!!!)

Seasoning (Use whatever you like!  The ones pictured are what I used.  What’s not pictured: Tamari and Chardonnay/White Wine)

Lettuce (Not sure what kind we used, but you can use any kind.)

Optional:

1 tomato (Seeded and Diced)

1 whole onion sliced into rings

3-4 cloves of garlic (minced)

1 red bell pepper (seeded and sliced into strips)

2-3 tablespoons of Ghee/Coconut Oil/Butter/Olive Oil

 

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Directions:

1.  Season the meat all over and put in crock pot.

2.  If your veggies aren’t prepped then prep them now.  Put them in crock pot with meat.

3.  If you’re using wine or and other liquid, put them in crock pot.  (Too be honest, you don’t need to put much liquid to the pot.  The condensation plus the fat from the pork will keep it moist.)

4.  Put lid on crock pot and set it on low for 8-10 hours.  Or high for 4-6 hours.

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5.  When the meat is cooked, take it out and put it in a bowl.

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6.  Using two forks, pull/shred the pork.  It will be nice and tender so you shouldn’t have any trouble at all.  (Optional:  Pour some of the liquid from the crock pot into the bowl with the meat.  This way the meat has more flavor and there will also be more moisture.)

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7.  Now for the options.  The tomatoes we kept fresh and were put in a bowl.  The rest were sauteed with Ghee in a frying pan on medium high heat.  Onions first (5 mins or until caramelized), Bell pepper next (3-5 minutes), and then garlic (2 minutes).  If you want to top your lettuce wrap with cheese, sour cream, etc. that’s all on you buddy.  🙂

8.  Wash and separate your lettuce leaves.

9.  Set everything on the table.

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10.  Make your lettuce wrap how you like it.  Want more meat than veggies?  GO FOR IT!!  Go ahead and chow on down!!

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Note:  They’re going to get kind of messy, so I would suggest napkins or paper towels.  Again, you can use any seasoning that you like.  Just have the Montreal Seasoning?  Use that!!  Don’t like or have wine?  Then opt out of it!  Well what about Tamari?  Use soy sauce or even worcestershire sauce instead.  Those last two aren’t very Paleo friendly though.  Use whatever you like if you know that you’re going to like it.  Just make sure to taste it in the end to make sure it’s what you wanted.  ENJOY!

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Breast

 

 

I think chicken is amazing.  I also think bacon is amazing, and when the two combine it’s like heaven in my mouth.  I came up with this recipe a couple months ago and its inspiration was through PaleoJoe’s Mother.  She was making dinner for the family and I was helping her a bit with it.  When I was thinking about what to eat at home I remembered the dish that she had made and thought…  “Hmmm…  I can do that.”  I didn’t have the same ingredients in my fridge so I had to alter it a bit.  Then I saw the bacon and thought, “GENIUS!!”  So here’s the recipe…

Please note that I didn’t measure when I was cooking so all measurements are guesstimates.  Please use your best judgment.

 

BACON WRAPPED STUFFED CHICKEN BREAST

Ingredients:

2 chicken breasts (Cut in 1/2, so now you have  pieces)

1 package of uncured bacon

1 small package of white mushrooms (sliced, and please note that you may not use all of the mushrooms so cut up maybe 10 of them.)

10 cloves of garlic (sliced)

Dubliner Cheese (See picture HERE, and I am pretty sure it was this size package.  I sliced it as thin as I could and I am pretty sure I used about 1/2 of this.)

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1.  Smash your chicken breast as flat as you can.

2.  Season your chicken with the salt and pepper.

3.  Place Garlic, cheese and mushrooms on your chicken breast.  You don’t want too much because you want to be able to roll your chicken up.

4.  Before you handle the chicken, get a frying pan and preheat it.  Medium to medium high heat.

5.  Roll the chicken as tight as possible.  Place chicken seam side down and any stuffing pieces that fell out, shove em back in.

6.  Wrap chicken with bacon.  Try to have the end pieces of the bacon match up with the seam of the chicken.

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Breast

7.  By now, your pan should be hot.  Place chicken seam side down.   Cook for about 7-10 minutes on each side.  Watch your food!!  If the bacon starts burning, take chicken off pan and turn down the heat.  replace after a couple of minutes.  Resume cooking.

8.  DONE!!  Take chicken out and serve with a side of choice.  For this one, I roasted yams.

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Breast 2

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Breast 3

 

ENJOY!!

Trotter Adobo

Shopping at the local oriental market, to me, is a lot of fun.   There’s a large selection of meat and seafood to choose from, but it’s inexpensive.  You most likely will  not find grass-fed beef or free-range chicken, but at 89 cents a pound for chicken legs…  Uh…  yeah.  SOLD!  The other day I picked up two packages of pigs feet, or, as my friend Miiss Dee would call them:  Trotters.  I kinda like calling them “Trotters”.  She says it’s a Southern thing.  I couldn’t remember the last time that I had eaten them so I had to have them.

There are many different ways to cook and serve Trotters, but this particular recipe calls for a crock pot.  PaleoJoe (My boyfriend) and I took a bunch of friends to the Los Gatos Creek Trail to go hiking.  Before we left I had gotten the crock pot out and prepped dinner.  I figured I would go back to my roots and serve up Adobo.  What I love about the Filipino Adobo recipe is that you can use any kind of meat.  Though I have yet to use or see anyone use seafood.  Not sure how that would taste.  But anyhoo…  chicken/pork/beef adobo is super YUM!

Please note that I do not measure when I cook.  All measurements listed below are guesstimates so please season your food to your liking.

 

TROTTER ADOBO (PIG’S FEET ADOBO)

 

Ingredients:

2 packages (3-4 pounds I think) of Pig’s Feet

1 medium yellow onion (Cut into 1/4’s)

4 garlic cloves (SMASH!! RAWR!!)

salt and pepper (or if you have the whole peppercorns then I would use about a tablespoon.)

4-5 bay leaves

1/2 cup of soy sauce

1/4 cup of vinegar

1/4 cup of water

Directions:

1.  Throw everything in the crock pot and turn it on high.

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2.  At about the 5 or 6 hour mark I took the meat out and cut it.  Then I put it back in the crock pot, mixed it about so that the meat is covered in the sauce, and then I put the top back on and let it cook another 2-3 hours.

 

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3.  Your food will be cooked at 8-10 hours.  The meat should be falling of the bones.  The kitchen should smell wondrous.  At this point you want to turn your crock pot down to warm or shut it off completely.  Serve it in bowls and ENJOY!!

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Note:  Normally, I would put potato in the pot or serve it with a side of rice, but…  I am on the Paleo Diet so no grains or potatoes for me!!  If you want to add potatoes, I suggest the yukon gold potato.  Use about 2 small ones, or 1 medium/large one and cube it up.  Maybe…  2 inch cubes.  Put them potatoes in after you cut the feet.  So at about the 5-6 hour mark.  If you put them in at the start they’re just going to get mushy.  What I love about Trotters is the marrow!!  I don’t know what it is about marrow, but I find it quite tasty.  You will also need baby wipes because if you’re like me…  you’re going to get messy and your hands are going to get sticky.  I don’t know why they will, but they will.  So don’t make this if you’re trying to impress a date and get laid.  😛

Meatloaf Muffins

The boyfriend and I made these the other day while we were prepping meals.  It’s a super simple recipe and tasty.

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Ingredients:

1 lb of ground beef (preferably grass fed.  You can use ground turkey/chicken/pork as well.  Entirely up to you.  For this one we used beef.)

1 egg

1/2 cup ground flax seed

1 large sweet potato (Cook it in the oven or steam it or however you want to cook it.  Peel it and mash it)

1/4 tsp sea salt

3 garlic gloves chopped/sliced/diced etc.

Herbs and Spices.  To be honest I have no idea what the boyfriend threw into the bowl.  I told him to have at it and he did.  My guess…  Rosemary, black pepper, oregano, onion powder.  If there is a spice or herb that you like then throw it in there.  Make it however you want it.

Instructions:

1.  Preheat the oven to 375 F

2.  Get a muffin pan and grease it up with coconut oil, butter, EVOO…  You don’t want your muffins to stick to the pan.

3.  Take all of the ingredients and mix it together.  Use your hands!  Get in there and just mash it up!  HULK MASH!!

4.  Evenly distribute the mixture amongst the muffin tins.

5.  Pop em in the oven for 30 minutes and when they’re done let them cool down a bit before taking them out before serving.

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Now one of them will fill me up if I just need a snack after the gym.  If I’m having lunch, two of these bad boys and a side of veggies satisfy the hunger.

This recipe is quick and easy.  Not much prep needs to go into making this dish.  The sweet potato you would have to cook beforehand, but other than that it’s simple.  What I would do to change it up a bit is perhaps line the muffin tins with bacon.  I ❤ bacon…  I will have to throw my meatloaf recipe on here one of these days.  There’s a bit more prep that goes into making a whole loaf of meat, but it’s SO worth the time and the effort.  Again, the above recipe is simple and easy.  ENJOY!