A terrific friend gave me this amazing book: The Magic by Rhonda Byrne. The magic of the book is practicing being grateful for what you have and for the people in your life.
Most of us say “Thank You” when we receive something, but feeling true gratitude doesn’t always come naturally (I know it doesn’t for me!). And feeling true gratitude is what will allow us to open our hearts and minds to other great things.
My mum has cooked my entire life. She has also worked my entire life and was often at work late (she has a PhD in material science has worked for Oxford University as well as IBM in the past).
Despite her exhausting job, every night she would come home and cook an entire meal from scratch for me and my dad (he hates eating leftovers and loves to eat a ton of food). I think this made her amazingly good at cooking quick meals with whatever we had in the fridge.
This fish bake is a dish she’s been making recently – I love it because it’s an entire meal in one large casserole dish. You can double or triple the recipe easily depending on how many people you want to feed. And it takes just a few minutes to chop everything up – after that, you can put your feet up and relax.
I was in the grocery store a couple days ago, and a woman was pushing a pram (a stroller, for those of you who don’t speak British). Her son (I assume) – about 5 or 6 years old was sitting in it and yelling over and over and over again, “Can I watch TV when we get home? Can I watch TV when we get home? Can I watch TV when we get home?”
He apparently knew what he was doing, because the poor woman finally snapped out a very loud and emphatic “YES.”
During this entire time, the checkout assistant was silently scanning item after item of processed food (cereal boxes, frozen meals, sodas, etc.) from the woman’s cart. Beep. Beep. Beep. Barcode after barcode after barcode.
Yes. I was literally about to go insane.
And yet I feel kinda sorry for the woman and the kid, because I really do wonder how much better behaved and less hyper that kid might be with a bit of proper food and nutrition. I’m not trying to judge, but I do wonder.
My adventure didn’t quite end there, though. As soon as the woman left, the assistant turned to my groceries, and I could tell that something changed in his eyes (I think, in retrospect, that it was fear).
I think he was terrified that my food had no barcodes. Just a bunch of thin, clear, plastic bags.
“What’s this?” The assistant turned and asked me as he fumbled for his code book.
Ok, my aunt didn’t literally say those words, but she did give me a very funny look when I told her how much I love my mum’s cooking. My aunt then proceeded to tell me how my mum couldn’t cook anything when she was growing up (she was the youngest of 4 kids) but that she was great at dress making.
Somehow, I think 30 years of cooking three meals a day for my dad daily changed things.
This post is coming a bit late for Mother’s Day, but I have to say that I LOVE MY MUM’s COOKING. [click to continue…]
I’ve been reading about Dr. Robert C. Baker, the inventor of the chicken nugget and a professor at Cornell University. Even though I had never considered the question of who invented chicken nuggets, my first answer would probably have been McDonald’s, just because it’s hard to think of a professor “inventing” something so commonplace. But I guess, it did have to be a scientist who would come up with reconstituted chicken meat!
Ok, enough about chicken slurry – I just thought those were “interesting” tidbits. This recipe uses whole chicken breasts (although you can also use chicken tenders, which is the meat close to the breast but that has a little white tendon attached to it). I’ve always found it easier to buy chicken breasts (which I keep frozen in my freezer for quick meals) and then to slice the the breasts into strips. And the “breading” for this recipe is really simple – just coconut flour with some spices.
I’m vacationing in the beautiful and sun-filled (and fun-filled) country of Costa Rica right now but really wanted to share this pork tenderloin recipe with everyone!
I have never had great success with pork tenderloin before now…somehow it always seemed to end up dry and not very tasty. But I was inspired to try again by a recent meal my neighbor cooked for us and also by this video of Michael Mina showing Tim Ferriss how to cook pork tenderloin in a frying pan. Ok, so my pork doesn’t look quite as pretty as Michael Mina’s, but I’m not feeling too bad that my cooking isn’t quite up to Michelin-star chef standards!
This dish requires zero prep and uses very very few ingredients. So, how do you cook delicious pork in a frying pan?
Sometimes there’s just no time to prepare an elaborate or even semi-elaborate meal!
It’s tiring to have to come up with creative recipes involving tons of exotic ingredients after a long day at work. So, I like to have a few quick and easy recipes up my sleeve for when I just want a quick but yet still delicious and nutritious dinner. This is one of those recipes…
The holiday season is always so busy and packed with things to do! I’m just taking it easy this year – no traveling, no entertaining, no hassle. But that doesn’t mean I can’t still eat well! So, this is my pretend party appetizer – apple and cheese (brie or blue cheese) wrapped in salami!
You start with some thinly sliced slices of salami (or use prosciutto instead), some soft cheeses (omit if you’re trying to be strictly paleo), and some apples (I like honeycrisp apples). Specifically, I used both a brie and a blue cheese (raw and aged). [click to continue…]
There are definitely a lot of days when I’m just too tired/depressed/fed-up to cook anything exciting. Often, I go with the salmon stew (recipe here) to save me during those desperate times. (I keep frozen salmon fillets in my freezer for this purpose actually!)
However, this chicken breast dish is fast becoming a go-to dish too on those days – it’s just so dang simple! [click to continue…]
This is a quick write-up of how to make perfectly moist and NOT overcooked scrambled eggs (dairy-free)!
As I have previously posted (see here), I learned how to scrambled eggs correctly from Gordon Ramsey (sadly, not in person, but still…). If you’re used to the overcooked scrambled eggs found at Waffle Houses, diners, and hotel breakfast buffets, then your first experience of “real” scrambled eggs might be a bit shocking – you’ll probably think it’s undercooked, except it’s how all the top chefs at all the nicest restaurants cook it!! In fact, I used to ponder about what their secret was…and now I know. [click to continue…]
I always thought leeks were funny vegetables – they look kinda like a weed (I mean, they’re tall, stiff, and grass-like). But when it comes to good-tasting, they’re definitely pretty high up there on my list of vegetables! It’s sort of like eating a weird non-GMO hybrid of onion, spring onion, and garlic. And they go fantastically well with eggs!
Before, I move on to the recipe, though, here’s a cool fact I just found out about leeks (I’m constantly amazed by what I can learn from Wikipedia!): leeks actually appear on the coronation gown of Queen Elizabeth II because they’re the national emblem of Wales (well, I knew that last bit about Wales)!
Oh, and another cool fact…that’s my lovely mother holding the plate (I know, I know, you can only see her hands – we’re both camera shy)!
What I love about this soup is the fact that you can put anything in it and it’ll still taste great. The key ingredients are some good broth, some fresh vegetables, and some delicious protein. Which all just sounds like the perfect proportions for healthy eating to me!
Here comes another simple recipe that requires Zero Cooking. It’s becomes a welcome habit when you have little time in the evenings. What I love about this recipe is the great mix of flavors (apples, curry, parsley, and a tiny hint of lime) and the fact you can make a bunch of it all in one go. In fact, I took some for lunch today.
I first discovered the joys of adding curry powder to tuna fish when I made this allrecipes.com recipe many years ago. Since then, I’ve simplified and improved the recipe (I hope) with fresh curly parsley and apples!
I know liver is great in terms of nutritional value, but it’s not always the most appetizing of meats if you’re unused to it. I actually grew up eating liver at home, and so I’m fine with that liver taste. However, J really isn’t a big fan of the taste, and so I’m constantly trying to come up with new ways of putting liver in dishes where you taste it less. This weekend marked the creation of the non-traditional chicken and liver dish.
As you can see from the photo above, the dish is so simple…so simple in fact, that there’s no need to even write a recipe for it! It’s just shredded chicken meat from my slow cooker chicken broth recipe with some sliced boiled liver and coconut aminos (or soy sauce). Ok, I admit you do have to cook both the chicken and the liver, but they’re both really easy dishes and you can make a bunch in advance and eat them for several days! Here’s the slow cooker chicken photo to remind you of that dish again:
Oh, and we didn’t just eat the chicken and liver by itself. We also shared a plate of feta and sauerkraut. Simple.
I love simplicity, and this recipe is as simple as it gets! I was inspired by the really fragrant basil I bought at the farmer’s market this morning. I was going to pair this cherry tomato basil salad with a nice apple tuna salad, but alas, the farmer’s market didn’t have any curly parsley. So, instead, I just reheated some burgers we had grilled earlier and splashed on top a healthy helping of the new sauerkraut I got this morning from my CSA farm, Triangle Farm.
So I started with the cherry tomatoes (grape tomatoes are also perfect for this, and may in fact be better. If you’re curious about the difference between cherry and grape tomatoes, then read this).
I halved each cherry tomato.
Then I roughly chopped up the basil leaves.
Then tossed the tomato halves and basil with some olive oil and sprinkled on some salt.
I served it with some burger patties topped with sauerkraut.
Hi! I'm Louise - I am "beyond gluten-free," grain-free, paleo/primal, a lawyer, an ex-physicist, a cook, a blogger, a Brit living in the US, an ex-violin player, an occasional crossfitter, a mystery book junkie, and of course, I am the Ancestral Chef :) Read my About Me Page for more!