Making my Way Back to You!

Wow what a journey the past months have been!  I will update my bio section as some of the recipes featured in this blog will change a bit!  I am on a dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free diet due to Lyme Disease.  The part of the proceeding that’s been really hard for me (and I still have some cheat treats here and there) is no SUGAR!!! I love making desserts and sweetening them with honey, coconut sugar, maple syrup, maple sugar, etc. Finding new sweeteners was always fun because I LOVE SWEET TREATS!!!  Stevia is my friend now – getting used to the taste, but sometimes I feel like it makes me feel sick.  It is a detox agent for Lyme so it’s the only one right now.  I am on the hunt for good dessert recipes using stevia – hopefully I will be able to feature some on this blog!!  In the mean time I did make tapioca pudding using french vanilla flavored liquid stevia from Whole Foods – I can’t complain!

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For this recipe I followed the instructions on the back of the box.  I doubled the recipe so I would have a week long treat.  Personally I like my tapioca a little on the thick side.  I usually decrease the amount of liquid to tapioca ratio. For doubling the recipe, it would have called for 1/2 cup of tapioca & 6 cups of coconut milk.  However, I did 1/2 cup of tapioca pearls & 3 cans of coconut milk (roughly that is almost 5 cups).  I have also experimented with different coconut milks and it seems that the following works the best in the sense of consistency:  thick & creamy.

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Okay moving on!

Let’s talk about oral care!  I have switched to paleo mouth products.  Super exciting to announce I am totally digging all the products!!  Here are some toothpastes, mouthwashes & powders I have started to use – check back later this week & I will post reviews in the main heading section of “beauty.”

Below are two different mouth washes – they are completely different in texture & compound.  I believe that having two different products to target different bacteria (promote the good, rid the bad) is always great!!!  You can use one as a morning rinse after breakfast and one as an afternoon rinse after lunch… or if you have kids & work you can just do it whenever it is convenient for you!

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Below are new toothpastes (Hello Products – they also make kids’ paste) I found at our local Wegman’s!! I was so happy to see paleo products there!! GO NATURAL OR GO HOME!  As you can see I have used the pink one.  I love it so much that I have been banging the container on the counter for the past two days in hope of getting every last drop out; and, you will be happy to know I have succeeded!  For your reference, the pink tube is “sensitivity relief” and the grey tube is “whitening.”  I have no tried the whitening one yet, but I did notice some improvement from the pink tube.  I have tried every OTC sensitivity toothpaste including prescription strength fluoride toothpastes, etc. and nothing has worked.  I was excited to find that this did help a little, not much, but it’s better than nothing!!  Give them a try, great taste, natural ingredients!

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… and of course Taylor’s tooth powder (featured in the beauty section already) is an absolute favorite.  I did start doing some coconut oil pulling – not sure if it is having any benefit, but if you want to try it all you do is put a big dollop of coconut oil in your mouth, swish for 20 minutes & spit!

 

One last thing to overwhelm you with in this random post about everything!  A new nut butter featured at Costco has me going crazy!!!

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Oh my gosh I am obsessed!!! I have 1-2 tbsps of NuttZo throughout the day instead of turning to my sugary paleo sweet treats!!! Love this so much, highly recommend – it’s a great blend of a variety of nuts.

Tune back friday!

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1, 2, 3 foods!

With a newborn at home it is rather challenging to make meals.  I am all about making something quickly, hoping it is as nutritious as can be and gobbling it down in light speed.  I wanted to share with you two of my new go to meals/sides.  The first one is an easy sweet potato mash.

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I simply wash sweet potatoes (I usually make 4 medium size), poke holes in them with a fork, place them in the microwave for 20 minutes (or until soft), peel the skin, mash the sweet potatoes in a bowl with a fork, add 1 tbsp of butter for each sweet potato I bake, whip it all up with the fork and ENJOY!  An easy side that leaves me so satisfied I do not crave dessert, #winning!  Next up is a breakfast dish!

First you chop bell peppers [You can use any color, I had a 3 pack – red, orange, and yellow – from Costco, so each day I got to choose a new color!] .  The second step is similar to the first; slice tomatoes [I bought a variety pack from Costco of mini tomatoes ranging in color from dark red to red to yellow.]  Next, I sauteed the peppers in olive oil (lightly coat the pan) for 5-10 min (until starting to slightly turn golden on the outside) on medium heat.  Then, I added in the tomatoes and continued to cook until the bell peppers were soft and the tomatoes had a “stewed” appearance.  After the veggies were cooked I added in about 1/3 a carton of Kirkland (Costco brand) egg whites.  I cooked until the egg whites were finished.  Finally, I poured out a mini 100 cal guacamole pack (purchased at Costco) on the side to use as a dipping sauce!  Below are pictures of the egg white containers & the mini guac packs… great purchases when you go for a Costco haul!!!

Hopefully you can find the above food on your plate in the morning!!

NOMaste!

COSTCO Haul

Costco has some new paleo products!!  This past week I did all the grocery shopping at Costco, I was very pleased with some of the produce I found.  I usually don’t buy any vegetables there – I have found them to be moldy, taste funny or go bad very quickly.  I typically stick to packaged gluten free/ paleo products, meats and sometimes fruit.  This past week I spent a little more time looking around and was pleased.  I am going to continue sorting through products each week because it is definitely cheaper to buy a week’s supply of food from Costco.  Below are the new products I have found over the past month…

Forager: Grain Free Paleo Granola

*Raisins were lacking – I added more

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Made in Nature: Dried Figs

*Whole figs, no additives or coating

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Bare: Apple Chips

*Crisp & crunchy, small & large pieces – great for dipping in nut butter!

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Essential Living Foods: Antioxidant Trail Mix

*Great variety of nuts & dried fruit – can add in some Enjoy Life chocolate chips

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Pacific Superfood Snacks: Kale Chips

*amazing olive & salt flavor, crisp & crunchy

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***My apologies for the poor photo quality, I will start to invest more time in taking pictures.

I hope you find these products and ENJOY each & every bite!

NOMaste!!

#friendsgiving

On Saturday my husband and I prepared our first thanksgiving dinner for our friends.  We were pleased with the turn out!  The following foods in a wonderful atmosphere were enjoyed….

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The napkins are actually dish towels from IKEA – a little secret, all restaurants use these to add to their “farm to table – rustic” look.  I cut off the inside label and the hanging string, ironed them and my husband rolled up the silverware!  The poinsettias are from Wegman’s and were repotted in these awesome tin cans from IKEA.  We had a fun time at IKEA the day after thanksgiving to do some non-sale shopping.

The food warming up and getting ready for your meal tour:

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We must begin with the foundation of every good thanksgiving meal…TURKEY:

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The turkey was purchased from Wegman’s – nothing fancy just a basic turkey that took forever to defrost!  We seasoned it with salt, pepper and garlic powder.  The turkey was extremely moist (sorry that’s the only word that properly describes the food) with delicious flavor!

Some other traditional favorites:

  • Cranberry Sauce:  I mixed one 12oz bag of cranberries, 3/4 cup water, 1/2 cup honey and a few tbsps of coconut palm sugar to taste (see under Vittles section which product I keep in my cabinet).  I cooked this mixture for about 25 minutes to ensure all the water had been absorbed, the cranberries had popped and the sauce was adequately thick.  The sauce was a little tart, however, my taste buds prefer this flavor as I “believe” it is more natural and less man-made.

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  • Mashed…turnips & parnsips for me and potatoes for the others.  I used this recipe for my paleo side dish:  mashed turnips and parsnips from Primal Palate.  Very basic ingredients and simple instructions, I used half an onion, instead of the full for a sweeter lighter taste… ENJOY!  The texture was thick lite and fluffy; I think I will use this recipe for our little one’s baby food!! Pictured below: paleo mash is featured first, followed by the potatoes being mashed & the final product.

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  • Brussel Sprouts:  we dolled these bland veggies up.  They were seasoned with salt, pepper & olive oil and baked with dried cherries & pistachios,  They were enjoyed by all, even those who don’t normally eat this vegetable…SUCCESS!!

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  • Stuffing… quinoa & red rice Williams Sonoma mix.  To make this treat more paleo friendly, I did not use butter – substituted with olive oil.  Additionally, I used half an onion, a full yellow pepper and the zest of half a lemon to add additional flavor.  Not a paleo dish as these are super food grains, however, you gotta splurge every now and then!

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  • Biscuits:  No bread!!! We made the famous Bacon and Chive Sweet Potato Biscuits from PaleOMG.  We had made these last year and fell in love with them, after being pregnant and eating GF CARBSSS I hadn’t made them since.  We forgot how good these biscuits are and will be making them again this weekend just to have around during the week!

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  • Pecan Pie:  You just have to have some dessert!! I made Gluten-Free Pie Crust by following the recipe from Living Without Gluten Free’s online recipes.  I used Cup4Cup flour, coconut oil and coconut palm sugar and followed the rest of the recipe as stated!  The filling, I cheated, I used Williams Sonoma’s Chocolate Pecan Pie filling which is sold in a glass jar and is absolutely divine!!!  Note:  the coconut ingredients gave the crust an additional unexpected coconut flavor, which paired with the chocolate pecan filling very nicely!

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Last but not least, you must sit down and feast!!!!!                      photo 3

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!!! My goal for this week… EXERCISE EVERYDAY!!!!

peace. love. paleo.