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Post those pics of dinner! And yes, I believe good presentation is a must…

Further Adventures in Sous Vide Cooking!

Hey everyone, hope everyone is well out there! Started my day meeting with 7 employees at my office who are ready to take a 30 day Paleo challenge. Reviewed everything, and we start Monday! Will keep everyone informed how it goes.

Sunday I made a Pork Loin Roast in the Sous Vide Supreme and it turned out perfectly. I used a recipe on Nom Nom Paleo’s page for the temperature (137 F for 4-5 hours) and seasoned it with her Magic Mushroom Powder which you can find on her amazing iPad app! Season, vacuum seal, bath for 4-5 hours minimum, and seal in cast iron skillet. Served it with amazing roasted while okra.

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Today I pulled out the Grassfed Chuck Roast I put in the Sous Vide right after pulling the pork out. I put it in at 130 F for 48 hours. Here are the picture start to finish for the meat and sides. First the chuck roast, then the roasted butternut squash “fries”, and some sautéed peaches and apples with cinnamon and ghee. YUM!

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And here is the finished plate courtesy of instagram!

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Have a meeting tomorrow night so no cooking, and likely no blogging! Hope all have a wonderful and blessed day tomorrow!

-E

 
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Posted by on July 24, 2012 in Main Entree, Pictures, Side Dishes

 

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Recent Good Eats at the Hacienda!

So much has been going on lately that I have failed to post much of what I have been eating lately.  Tonight is pretty exciting because my friendly FedEx man delivered my new 27 Inch iMac today and I’ve been getting it all set to my liking over the last few hours.  I’m Very excited about the new machine, and hope to really utilize it to make the content of the blog even better.  Enough of that, on to the food!

I love curries, and the other night I really craved a crab curry I used to make before going Paleo.  This recipe is from one of Jamie Oliver’s books and after reviewing it, I figured out it did not need even one alteration to make it compliant!  Now that is convenient.  It’s a classic curry with lots of deep flavors from cumin, fennel, mustard seeds, turmeric, garlic, ginger, etc.  The key for me is to put extra cilantro both in the dish, and on top when serving.  Here is a picture of the ingredients and the finished product. (I served it on top of some cauliflower rice)

Tonight I cooked a Ribeye Roast in my Sous Vide Supreme.  First I seasoned it with my own rub made of spanish smoked paprika, granulated garlic, salt, and pepper, vacuum sealed it, and I let it soak for 24 hours at 130 F and pulled it out tonight.  This cut of meat does not need to cook this long, but I leave it in longer more out of convenience.  The longer soak does not in any way negatively affect the finished product.

Here is the meat after the soak in the sous vide.

Next I heated up the trusty cast iron skillet and seared each side well.

Lastly, here is a shot of the roast cut, and my dinner plate with a side of bacon green beans.  Note how the meat is cooked perfectly medium rare though out, “edge to edge.”  This is what Sous Vide cooking is all about!

So there you have two quick meals I’ve cooked in the last two days.  Keep experimenting guys with whatever sounds good.  Curries are great because they really lend themselves to easy conversion to Paleo.  Hope all are well, gotta hit the sack…

-E

 
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Posted by on June 15, 2012 in Main Entree, Pictures

 

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Whole 30, Day 7

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Today makes a week, and that is pretty exciting!

I taught my first sunday school lesson today, and that went pretty well. Fairly intimidating process, but none-the-less it seemed to go over well, and I’ll be teaching again in around a month.

This morning was absolutely crazy getting to church. My wife had to work as a volunteer in the nursery, and I was teaching. In the process of eating some cheerios my son decided he did not like the cup they were in, and proceeded to kick the cup across the room. Bad news…he got in a fair bit of trouble; good news…he may have a future in the NFL as a field goal kicker 😉

Breakfast throughout this fiasco consisted of a hard boiled egg. For lunch I took my wife and mother in law out to a mexican joint with the kids. Had a steak and grilled veggies…it was quite tasty. They are awesome and don’t mind me asking tons of questions about how EXACTLY they are cooking my food! For dinner we ate over at our neighbors house. It is quickly becoming a sunday tradition to eat over there while all the kids play in their pool. I make the main dish, she makes the sides. Of course they are also Paleo followers so it makes the whole thing great. Tonight for the main dish I made a Sous Vide Brisket that I cooked for 48 hours. This is what it looks like when you take it out.

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Once out of the bag and completely dried, it’s time to hit the smoking hot cast iron skillet to brown on all sides. I put the skillet on high and let it heat up for 10 minutes so that it’s crazy hot. The results are always amazing.

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My neighbor whipped up a few sides of roasted asparagus which were amazing, and the Pesto Spaghetti squash from the Make it Paleo cookbook. We all agreed that this side dish was the winner of the night. Absolutely amazing job by Kathryn on the sides again tonight!

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Another great weekend has come to an end. Looking forward to a good week, and for the weekend. This saturday will be my wife and I’s first venture to our local Alexandria CrossFit. It’s about time we get more serious about our physical fitness…and we are ready to go! Hope everyone had a good weekend, and all the mothers had a good mother’s day!

 

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Whole 30: Day 3

So, Whole 30 day three has come and gone! For breakfast I had a hard boiled egg and two dried figs. I ate an early lunch at the office of left over sous vide carnitas and roasted acorn squash.

This evening when I got home I eagarly fished out my beef brisket that I put into my Sous Vide 48 hours ago. It looked amazing straight out of the bag, but it went out of the park after a quick sear in my cast iron skillet. It was abasolutely the best brisket I have ever had, and I lived in Texas for four years in college! It was moist as can be unlike most traditional briskets. This meal will quickly be at the top of our weekly standards! It was a good as it looks.

Every day so far has been easier than the day before.  I’m finally getting used to drinking water, and I got through half a mug of black coffee today before I gave up…definite progress!  We normally get tons of “goodies” at the office from companies and pharm reps, but today was exceptional.  Three boxes of hot donuts on arrival, lunch from a chinese place, and hot, made to order Otis Spunkmeyer cookies!  Darn those people!  I actually don’t miss any of it at all, especially when I see the others suffering their GI distress in the face of four cookies or MSG laden Chinese food.  I ate my carnitas (which were better than anyone else’s lunch) and went on my merry way.  Since going Paleo a little under a year ago, I have not eaten ONE sweet brought to our office, and that is saying something.  It’s sooooo nice to feel good!  Catch ya’ll tomorrow.

-E

 

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Paleo Food Photo Dump 2

One of our houses quick and easy side dishes is cinnamon apples.  Ok, I know I got this recipe from somewhere, but I don’t remember at the moment where!  It’s just not mine!  How can you go wrong with ghee, pecans, apples, and cinnamon?  They went well one night with a quick broiled steak and sauteed spinach.

Dinner does not have to be complicated.  This was simply a chicken breast sauteed with onions, garlic, and some Ms. Dash Southwest, add a yummy Broccoli salad (recipe to come) and we were set!

I love breakfast too, so gotta represent!  When I was a kid and we would visit my grandparents in Puerto Rico every morning she would make me this!  Mini bananas caramelized in butter (I use ghee) and eggs.  I snazzed it up a bit by throwing some scallions into the eggs, but all the same.  Isn’t it amazing how tastes and smells can take you back in time.  Just the taste of these take me back to the house overlooking the ocean.  Great memories…

Lastly two more complete meals.  My first Sous Vide steak with quick riced cauliflower and sauteed mushrooms from last night.  And tonights meal…moment of silence please… crispy sous vide chicken thighs courtesy of Nom Nom Paleo.  Honestly, these thighs were the most amazing, most chickeny tasting creation ever.  It’s like chicken thigh meets Chicken Cracklin!  Threw in some Bacon Green Beans and mashed carrots and called it a meal!

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2012 in Pictures

 

Paleo Food Photo Dump!

Although I have not posted much of my cooking lately, by no means does that mean that we’ve been doing take out for the last month!  Trying to put things together I just photographed some of my cooking and wanted to bring everyone up to date.  No step by steps, no ingredients, just food porn you may say!

We’ll start with the two recipes I highlighted in my book review of Well Fed by @melicious11.  The first was the Rogan Josh.  It’s really easy to make, and you just got to trust that ALL that spice goes in there!  I was a little surprised that my wife actually picked this one out and asked me to make it.  She’s not always into ethnic flavors, but this one hit the spot.  I made some quick mashed cauliflower flavored with fresh thyme, grated garlic, and a little coconut milk to serve with.

I also made the Chinese BBQ Pork.  I used country style boneless pork ribs, and I was out of apple sauce, so I just threw in one fresh apple that I peeled and cored.  Yum!

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2012 in Pictures

 

Update 2/28/12

Well, I had an excellent day off, that included an extended nap! I’ve been thinking of how to improve my crab cake recipe, and I think I did it today! So, here we go!

I started with some wonderful beets I got from Inglewood Farms (all the produce tonight is from Inglewood). I washed and trimmed them, put them in an oven proof dish, add a splash of water, cover tightly with foil, and put in a 400 F oven for 45 minutes or so. The actual cook time will vary depending on the size of the beets. Once done, let them cool, and use the back of a pairing knife to peel off the skins. Dice them up and place in a bowl with salt, pepper, and your vinegar of choice. Now I like beets, and most cookbooks I have say to let the beets marinate in vinegar a while before adding any oil. So, I added balsamic vinegar and around 30 minutes later, added a bit of extra virgin olive oil. Beets done!

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Next I’ll address the side vegetables. Tonight we had carrots and cauliflower. I trimmed and peeled the veggies, and placed them on a sheet pan. On the carrot side I added some garlic infused macadamia nut oil with salt and pepper. For the cauliflower i added olive oil and garlic powder. The pan went into the same 400 F oven for around 30-40 minutes and that was it!

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Lastly for the crab cakes. In a bowl I put half a yellow bell pepper diced finely, three scallions diced finely, one egg well beaten, two tablespoons of paleo mayo, a tablespoon of Old Bay Seasoning, and a pound of fresh crab meat. Gently mix the ingredients and form into 8 small patties. Put them in the fridge to firm up so they stay together while you fry them up. In a shallow plate sprinkle some coconut flour. Melt a little coconut oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Coat the cakes in flour and fry in the coconut oil around 3-4 minutes a side until the are a nice golden brown on both sides.

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Now I don’t know about ya’ll, but crab cakes to me just need a sauce to make them pop! I found some mild pickled type baby peppers my mom gave me (picture attached) and blended them up with my immersion blender along with a few heaping spoonfuls of coconut milk and a few drops of agave syrup. Plate everything up and it’s time to eat! Hope everyone has a good day…

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Posted by on February 28, 2012 in Main Entree, Pictures, Recipes

 

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Update 2/26/12

Hey everyone! Hope you all had as good a weekend as I did. Just a totally relaxing weekend with the family, and I really needed it! So, what did I do? Well, I started off Saturday morning with a trip to the Green Market downtown to buy some Inglewood Farms organic produce and eggs for the weekend. I got it home, washed it, bagged it, and settled it all into my Veggie Refrigerator Drawer.

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Next I did a few housekeeping chores for the kitchen. I was running low on my balsamic vinegar glaze, so I bought two 3 dollar bottles of balsamic vinegar at the grocery, and I simmered it until it was reduced by around 1/2 or more. This makes a thick and rich glaze that is amazing with almost anything. Sure, you can spend tons more on very old balsamic, and I do have some of it, but that is only for special occasions. This stuff is cheap, yummy, and perfect for every day. Next, I put a heap of almonds into the food processor and let them go for 10 minutes. At the end I add a little roasted almond oil, and there ya have it…almond butter!

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Saturday night I cooked up my kid’s favorite…Flat Iron Steak! They sell them individually pre-vacuum sealed at Kroger, and I find the flavor just about the best of any steak you can get anywhere. Like I said, the kids love it. Funny enough, they will ONLY eat it medium rare! I always cook it that way, and they won’t accept it any other way. Fine by me! I added another batch of the the Health-Bent.com Roasted Acorn Squash drizzled with a little of my newly made balsamic glaze, and a side of Inglewood Farms Chinese Spinach sautéed in bacon grease…YUM!

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I woke up this morning craving something a little different…a cheat maybe? So, I whipped up some Paleo Coconut Pancakes. I’m not ready to say I perfected the recipe yet, so I’ll keep working on it and post it when ready. Pancakes themselves are perfect, just need to work on the spice combination! For a topping all I had was a relatively bruised honey crisp apple. I chopped it up and sautéed it in ghee till crisp, and then added a little cinnamon and agave to finish it off. Added a couple of pieces of bacon, drizzled a little melted raw honey on the pancakes, and that’s all she wrote. Lets just say…we’ll eat these again!

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We decided to take the kids on a hike today out at Valentine Lake, so before we left, I collected the cornish hens I put to defrost a few days ago and seasoned them. I my spice grinder I put three dried shitake mushrooms, a tablespoon of sage, and a tablespoon of salt. I whizzed it up and liberally applied it to the birds. At the bottom of my slow cooker I put a chopped up onion, a few carrots, some left over acorn squash from the other night, and three garlic cloves. I put the birds on top, put a third of a cup of chicken broth in the cooker, and set it for 8 hours on low.

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When we got back this afternoon, I took the hens out and put them on a rack to cool. With my immersion blender I made an amazing gravy out of the juices and veggies in the bottom of the slow cooker. Just had to add a touch of salt to finish it off.

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For my sides, I sauteed up some cubed King Trumpet Mushrooms in olive oil, and roasted some asparagus in the oven at 400 F for around 20 minutes. Just toss them in olive oil, salt, and pepper and pop them in. I usually add some kind of vinegarette to top my asparagus because Kourt just loves them that way, and tonights did NOT disappoint! Whole grain mustard, White Balsamic Vinegar, salt, pepper, and olive oil. All I can say is…Kourt and I were fighting to lick the left overs out of the bowl! Finally, I plated everything up. We have the adult plate, and the kid’s plate! All were happy…

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Really, just a great weekend! Good weather, good food, and great times with my family. Time to go start planning tomorrow night’s dinner!

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2012 in Main Entree, Pictures, Recipes

 

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Update 2/18/12

How is everyone doing? I hope all of you are well. I’m all alone this weekend, so have a chance to try out some new things to cook! I’m reading an awesome book right now called “Why We Get Fat,” I’ll make sure and post a review once I’m done.

Got back from rounding at the hospital this morning and was quite hungry. Ran by the grocery and picked up some Chicken apple sausages and served them with a spinach salad I whipped up.

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Tonight I decided to try something fun. There are so many Puerto Rican dishes that I grew up eating, and I’m convinced that many of them can be converted to Paleo. This evening I made traditional Vaca Frita (Literally, fried cow) and Puerto Rican style “Cauliflower Rice.” Honestly, I have to say, this may have been the best Paleo meal I’ve come up with yet!!
I started with taking a whole flank steak and slicing it in two. I threw it in the old pressure cooker with a bay leaf and 4-5 peppercorns. I filled it half full of water, cranked her up, and let it go at pressure for 45 minutes. I let the pressure die down and once they cooled, I removed the steaks and shredded them and set the meat aside.

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Next I started on the Cauliflower. Normally I would make steamed rice and Puerto Rican flavored kidney beans. What I decided to do was to make Cauliflower Rice, but use the flavoring I would normally make the beans with! Start by making a traditional sofrito. In a food processor add half a yellow onion, 1/3 a sweet bell pepper, two large garlic cloves, 1/2 t of oregano, and 1 t salt. Process until pretty smooth. Add the sofrito to a pan with a good dose of olive oil and fry gently until the flavors come together. Next process the cauliflower until the consistency you want…basically rice like. Add the cauliflower to the pot along with a cup of chicken stock and a packet of Goya Sazon Seasoning. It’s not completely paleo I’m sure as it has a little MSG, but there is no flavor substitute! Cook this down, add a little salt to taste, and turn your attention to the meat.

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Slice an onion up thinly, and add it to a pan with olive oil with the heat up high. Add the shredded beef and season with salt, pepper, and just a sprinkling of cumin. Fry the meat, moving often until it gets nice and crispy. You are looking for around half crispy and half moist. Be aggressive with the heat to get the right flavor! Serve, and enjoy!

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Posted by on February 18, 2012 in Main Entree, Pictures, Recipes

 

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Beef Shanks with Carrots And Cabbage

Hello everyone, hope everyone was able to make it out to the Green market today at the museum! I took the kids cause the wife wasn’t feeling well. We were a bit late, and the line was long. The kids were freezing, and I made it about two minutes of the kids swearing they were turning into Popsicles before I caved and went home…empty handed. On to next week…

I did manage to cook today, and I use a Nom Nom Paleo recipe as a guide. I pretty much followed the recipe except I added two turnips to the mix. Kids actually ate some, and all were happy with things! Hope you guys can try it out some time.

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Posted by on February 11, 2012 in Main Entree, Pictures, Recipes

 

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