mini burgs

 

Trust me…you won’t even miss the bun!  Really…these burgers are so flavourful, you will want them to stand alone.  I have always been a meat lover (steak yummmm), but since zeroing in on my diet and increasing my workouts I have become a CRAZY CARNIVORE!!!  I can actually really notice that my body totally craves protein now…BIGTIME!

Preparing and cooking these tasty burgs are super easy and will satisfy those cravings ASAP.  To date, this is definately one of our favourite Paleo recipes.  When I made these the first time, I used lean ground beef and have since tried the same recipe with ground turkey.  Both turned out equally as delicious, it just depends on what you are in the mood for.  One thing is for sure…these little protein bites are definitely a PARTY in the mouth!

The next time I make these mini burgs, I am going to get more adventurous and experiment with elk, bison or maybe even wild boar~ who knows?  I am on a mission to investigate and check out some local butchers and farms to see what I can get my hands on!  Eaters BEWARE, these little stacks of goodness are highly addictive.  Bet you won’t be able to stop at 3 or 4 or 5…

mini burgs
Print
Recipe type: appetizer
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
Total time: 25 mins
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 pound lean ground beef or other meat of choice
  • coconut or olive oil- for cooking
  • 1/4 small onion- grated
  • 1/2 small zucchini- grated
  • 1/2 small carrot- grated
  • 2 cloves garlic- crushed
  • 3 tsp red curry paste ~*ISH
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ground pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. heat oil in frying pan
  2. put meat of choice in a large mixing bowl
  3. grate onion, zucchini, carrot and garlic and combine
  4. add curry paste, ground cinnamon and pepper
  5. mix thoroughly- using your hands works best here
  6. form small balls with mixture and then flatten into mini patties
  7. cook on medium heat, alternating sides for 10-12 minutes or until cooked
  8. top with guacamole
  9. enjoy!
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pork burgers waldorf-ish salad

 

Simple isn’t and doesn’t have to be boring. Since starting to eat Paleo…I have heard it over and over again…aren’t you bored with the same old food? You are so limited aren’t you? Not a chance! If anything, it has opened my eyes to recognizing previously unheard of dishes and has also introduced my appetite to many new and exciting meals. As of late, I have really been trying to focus on choosing foods that are nutrient dense and of higher quality. Yes folks…you can taste the difference and your body will thank you as well. The value in this is totally more important that the quantity of a particular food item.

When shopping for your weekly groceries don’t be afraid to ask questions…talk to people! Where is your meat coming from, how has it been raised and slaughtered? What ingredients etc… have been added in since then? Make friends with your local butcher or store owner haha – most folks in this industry are passionate and love food and will talk your ear off if you give them the opportunity. Take a few minutes to listen!

Of course I realize and understand that we do not all have access or perhaps the means of ALWAYS getting the “best of the best”, but I challenge you to make small changes. Strive for better quality products as you shop…integrate these at your own pace, but look beyond what is “your norm”, or what has become “habitual” just because that’s what you throw in your cart every time you shop. An illustration of this may be a progression from…a fast food burger>store bought frozen burger>homemade burger>homemade burger made with grass-fed meat. You get the idea.

This may sound foreign or somewhat odd to some of you out there, but try to start paying closer attention to how you are feeling before, during and after eating. Log it or jot down some notes if you wish…or keep them mentally in your head. Are you really hungry, or just eating because it’s “lunch time”? Do you even like the food that you are shoveling in your yapper, or has it now developed into a routine of sorts? Are you emotionally eating? Why? Listening to my body and accepting these cues as valid has been one of my greatest accomplishments thus far when it comes to food and nutrition. I am now not only able to hear these cues, but respond to them. I only eat now when I am hungry. Yes…let me repeat that…I only eat when I am hungry. Try it…get away from the standard breakfast…snack…lunch…snack…dinner…dessert…snack mad and crazy vicious cycle. Be mindful of the food decisions you make, otherwise that pack of smarties will be done before you can say…”do you eat the red ones last?!?”

Finally, if any of you are left thinking…oh I will just work extra hard at the gym tomorrow…or I will push myself more during CrossFit wods or any work out for that matter ALL of next week…guess what…

“You cannot out work a shitty diet” ~ a beautiful quote from a trainer @ CFTO. That’s about it…the proof will be in your performance and how you feel.

Rowe Farms Pork Burgers

We stumbled upon these yummy “bad boys” on one of our weekend ventures to Rowe Farms in the Beaches, in Toronto. We popped in there to pick up some meat for a friend’s BBQ and discovered this amazing find. They are totally made in-house and contain only Paleo friendly ingredients. They are definitely a nice variation from the usual beef burger. The kind butcher at the store wrote down the goods for me on a bright yellow piece of paper, but it has gotten lost in the shuffle. I will be in there again this weekend and will update this post with the exact ingredients for those who are interested! In the meantime, they consisted basically of ground pork and a whole lot of spices and herbs for added flavour.

Ingredients

Waldorf-ish Salad

Makes 2-4 servings – depending on size

  • large lettuce leaves – Romaine works well
  • 1 large red apple – diced
  • 2 pork kebabs – meat diced (usually includes grilled chicken)
  • 2 celery stalks – diced
  • handful of walnuts – chopped

Prep

  • prepare and cut all ingredients and put in a mixing bowl
  • add a few tbsp of the creamy garlic – avocado dressing and mix thoroughly (use your hands)
  • once coated, scoop salad mixture onto large lettuce leaves
  • enjoy!

Creamy garlic and avocado dressing

Makes a lot…(I like to use the extra as dip for veggies)

Ingredients

  • 2 ripened avocados
  • 1 lemon- juice freshly squeezed
  • 1 medium orange- juice freshly squeezed
  • 1/3 can coconut milk
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • fresh ground pepper and sea salt to taste
  • fresh tarragon and thyme- 2 springs of each

Prep

  • “gut” the insides of 2 avocados and place the contents in a mixing bowl
  • add in liquid ingredients- coconut milk and freshly squeezed juices
  • add in cloves, fresh herbs and salt/pepper
  • throw it all in a food processor or mix with a hand immersion blender until desired consistency is reached
  • enjoy!

A Waldorf salad traditionally consists of cut-up raw apples, celery and walnuts, dressed in mayonnaise. It is usually served over lettuce as an appetizer or a light meal. The salad was first created between 1893 and 1896 at the Waldorf Hotel in New York City (the precursor of the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, which opened in 1931).Oscar Tschirky, who was the Waldorf’s maître d’hôtel and developed or inspired many of its signature dishes, is widely credited with creating the recipe.In 1896, Waldorf Salad appeared in The Cook Book by ‘Oscar of the Waldorf’; the original recipe did not contain nuts, but they had been added by the time the recipe appeared in the Rector Cook Book in 1928.The salad became popular enough that Cole Porter featured it in his song “You’re the Top”.

Source: Wikipedia

spicy sausage salad

 

Everyone has those standard dishes that they rely on as “tried, tested and true.”  The basis for this salad, sans meat is a “regular” in our weekly meal rotation.  It is a great “foundation” for creating salads, because we often just whip up a massive batch in a Tupperware container and then add different types of meat, fish or seafood to it afterwards, for both lunches and dins alike.  The prep work and the cutting up of all the veggies is what takes some time, but once that is complete, it is super convenient and reassuring to know that it is stored and ready-to-go in the fridge.

If you end up making a smaller batch or divide the larger one into smaller ones, I highly recommend the good old “shakeroo” technique before plating it!  What do I mean?  Well…you take all your ingredients (veggies)- put them in a container with a lid, or a big plastic bag (Ziploc), add your dressing and shake it like MAD!!!  You may be thinking, so what!?!  I honestly don’t know what it is, but this little step makes all our salads taste SO much yummier.  It makes a huge difference and I find that you end up needed less dressing as well.  Everything ends up being coated and  mixed together like a big ol’ happy family (especially the avocado).  DELISH!!!  Give it a go!  TIP- you may only want to do the “shakeroo” move if you are going to enjoy within a reasonable time frame, or else it will go soggy. If not you can divide the larger batch into smaller portions and mix as you go.

spicy sausage salad
Print
Recipe type: main
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 15 mins
Total time: 25 mins
Serves: 2-4
Ingredients
  • SALAD:
  • 1/2 box mixed greens
  • 1 package spicy sausage- grass-fed (any type of pork sausage would work)
  • 4 mini-cucumbers- cubed
  • 1-2 avocados- sliced
  • 3 vine ripe tomatoes- sliced
  • 1/2-1 red pepper- chopped
  • toasted almonds to top (optional)
  • DRESSING:
  • 3 parts olive oil
  • 1 part balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 lemon or lime- juice squeezed
  • 2 cloves garlic or 2 tsp of roasted garlic mixture (will be in upcoming post)
  • ground pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. wash and chop all veggies
  2. combine in a large bowl
  3. meanwhile, grill sausage in a frying pan/grill on medium heat for 15-20 minutes, until cooked
  4. cut sausage into smaller portions
  5. combine and whisk all dressing ingredients
  6. transfer and pour everything from the bowl into a large container or plastic bag
  7. drizzle dressing onto the salad, seal and SHAKE!
  8. plate and then add sausage on top (or other meat, fish or seafood)
  9. top with slivered toasted almonds (optional)
  10. enjoy!
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