Saturday, February 18, 2012

Busy Days...

It never fails that when you start something big, life amps up to match it. This challenge to keep sugar (and al foods that turn into sugar) out of our diet has really consumed my time. I don't want this to discourage anyone. I am a hard core food lover. To the point that I prefer to not eat the same meal (dinner) more than twice in a month. So, it's my own fault for being such a meal snob I guess. Doing my menus this way takes some more time looking for the recipes. I have a few favourite sites that I will share with you at the end of this blog.

One thing I have noticed while doing my search is that this diet is extremely similar to the Paleo Diet. I had never heard of this before, but I must say, it does make sense. I spoke of this in a previous blog so I won't bore you by repeating myself. Just interesting really. So without further ado I give you our latest kitchen treats. As usual I try to use grain-fed meats and organic whenever I can. It does make a difference; especially in the meat department.

The Classic Shepherd's Pie
Mashed Faux-tatoes (see below)
1 tbsp coconut oil (or olive if you wish)
1 large onion, finely chopped
1lb ground beef (grain-fed is best)
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 cup frozen peas (or any veg blend you wish)
1 bell pepper, finely chopped
1 tbsp arrowroot flour
2 tbsp ice cold water
1 cup vegetable stock
2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1 pinch ground cloves
sea salt and pepper (to taste)

1) Prepare the faux-tatoes and set aside. Preheat oven to 375˚F.
2) In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat and add the onion and celery. Cook, until soft. Add the ground beef and increase the heat to medium high heat until well browned; breaking up the chunks.
3) Add the remaining vegetables and sauté until warm (4-5 minutes). Add the stock, thyme, oregano, cloves, salt and pepper.
4) In a small bowl, combine the arrowroot powder with the ice water, stirring with a fork until smooth. This will act like cornstarch and thicken the sauce. Add to veggie and meat mixture, stirring well to combine. Bring to a boil and cook for 2-3 minutes or until gravy thickens. Transfer to a 9" round or 3qt casserole dish.
5) Spread the mashed faux-tatoes onto the meat, spreading evenly. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the faux-tatoes are golden.

Mashed Faux-tatoes
adapted from Food.com
1 head cauliflower
4 oz cream cheese
1 tbsp butter
1/3 c cream (any you like)
salt and pepper (to taste)

1) Steam cauliflower until soft, but not mushy.
2) Drain really well and purée in food processor, adding the butter, cream cheese and cream.

You decide how smooth you want it. I like to use whipping cream.

As promised here are a few of my newest favourite sites. I might have to adapt the sugar to use xylitol from time to time, but the recipes are usually pretty good. Enjoy your menu planning!

Paleo Diet Recipes
Health-Bent
Healthy Living How To
Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Sugar-Free
Maximized Living