Now Introducing….the WORST blogger ever!!

Seriously friends.  I’m a giant jerk.  I haven’t posted in almost a month.  To be fair, a WHOLE lot of big stuff has happened in the past three weeks.  For starters, I had my birthday!  Yay.  I’m officially 28, so I guess that’s exciting?  Also, school ended for the year, which is always a chaotic time. So let’s do a little review in pics of what I’ve been doing that has kept me away from all of you lovely folks.  Ready? Go! I’ve been….clean bruises

Beating the crap out of myself at the gym everyday!  Honestly, it’s crazy how easily I bruise.

wildcat 5k 2013

Hey look!  I ran a 5k at my school!  Plus, I didn’t die AND I took 12 minutes off of my previous 5k….that means I finished in just under 33 minutes.  I’ll TAKE it!

road trip selfie

I headed down to Kansas City for a brief getaway.  It was GREAT!  Love that city and I LOVE road tripping!  Speaking of, stay tuned for plenty of talk about my “Tour of Texas” I’m doing in July!

Lastly, and possibly the most important thing I’ve been doing….

yard drinking

Enjoying the HELL out of my summer break!  For real. I’ve been enjoying deck beverages, yard beverages, patio beverages, beverages with friends, with family, and by myself!  It’s been amazing to JUST RELAX…..which I don’t allow myself to do much.  I’m pretty sure I could get used to this!

As you can see, I’ve been a busy busy girl!  I know I’ve said it before, but I am going to post more often.  I promise.  No, I really REALLY promise!  Anyways, regardless of all of the awesome going on lately, there have been a few things kind of bringing me down.  One of these is body image.  I am convinced that I will always struggle with it.  Always, no matter how old I get, no matter how confident I become, it’s always lurking….waiting to pounce at one moment of weakness.  That’s all a different post for a different day….but be prepared, because I feel like it’s going to be coming soon!

On to food.  To be quite honest, I haven’t really been cooking much exciting stuff lately.  Just sticking to the basics of a piece of grilled/roasted meat, some veggies, and some fat.  Pretty boring folks!  But the one thing I have been mildly obsessed with is stuffing sweet potatoes.  It’s SO FREAKING GOOD!  Not to mention super simple!  So I’ll give ya a two-fer on recipes tonight.  I owe you…….big time.  So here are two of my beauties!

pulled chicken sweet potato jalapeno beef sweet potato

Garlic Jalapeno Pulled Chicken

  • 3-4 whole jalapeno peppers, cut in half lengthwise (leave all seeds and ribs IN)
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed (just whack them with the back of your knife)
  • 2 tablespoons dried minced onion (you could use fresh onion chunks, I just didn’t have any in the house!)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 pound of chicken (I used chicken tenders….they cook faster, but you could sub breasts or thighs….the cooking time might be a bit different)
  1. In a large dutch oven or stock pot, fill with 4-6 cups of water.
  2. Put ALL ingredients OTHER THAN the chicken into the pot and bring to a boil.
  3. When the water is at a rolling boil, carefully drop your chicken in. Turn the heat back to Medium and continue to boil for about 30 minutes.
  4. To test if chicken is done, simply remove a piece of chicken and split it apart at the thickest part. If it’s not done, just toss it back into the cauldron!
  5. When chicken is cooked through, remove from the pot and allow to cool before shredding by hand.

This turned out slightly spicy and totally delicious!  Not to mention, it can be used for any number of other recipes.  In fact, I scrambled some of the leftover chicken into my eggs the next morning!  Boom.  Plus, it was damn good stuffed into a baked sweet potato and topped with fresh guacamole.

Jalapeno Lime Ground Beef

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1-2 jalapeno peppers, seeds and ribs removed, finely diced
  • 4 limes, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon dried minced onion (could sub fresh…about 1/2 an onion, just didn’t have any!)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  1. In a deep skillet, brown your ground beef.
  2. When beef is almost cooked through add in the remaining ingredients and mix together well.
  3. Turn your heat back to Medium-Low and simmer your ground beef for 8-10 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  4. Taste, and salt and pepper as needed!
  5. Stuff it in a baked sweet potato and SMASH!

Alrighty, well hopefully I’ve gone and made a bit of amends……I promise not to desert you again! Plus, there will probably be a dessert of some sort coming soon.  I will be selling baked goods at a competition being held at my gym on June 29th, so I will be a baking MACHINE in the next couple of weeks!  Lucky you 🙂 Get out there and enjoy your summer! Peace, Love, and Paleo!

-Meister

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Birthdays and Bacon

Oddly enough, the two go completely hand in hand!  I’m sitting here, writing to you all on the eve of my 28th birthday.  I remember a time when I thought, “Damn! 28 is SO OLD!”  Ha.  Right.  Don’t get me wrong, I still don’t know how I feel about getting closer to 30, but I feel awesome about my age.  That being said, I feel like 27 is going to be a very hard year to beat.  I discovered CrossFit, went fully Paleo, and began reclaiming my life as my own while I was 27.  I traveled, I met TONS of amazing people, I launched a blog, and I have tried my hand at selling my Paleo baked goods.  For real, 27 was pretty stellar.  So, BRING IT 28! You had better be freaking awesome, because you have some major expectations to rise up to!

On to bacon.  I can’t express enough how much I love bacon.  Hell, I have a bacon figurine that sits on my desk at school that I refer to as my “boyfriend”.  Several of my students have commented that they are bringing me bacon tomorrow as birthday gifts.  That is just weird to me….and unless it is in an unopened package, will NOT be consumed by me.  I ain’t dumb.  I love em, but I don’t trust middle schoolers with food handling or prep of ANY kind and I don’t really want to spend my birthday in the bathroom.

Couple of exciting things are going down!  The first is that I will be selling my Paleo treats at CrossFit Artis during “The Duo” event on June 29th.  Check out their page for info!  It’s going to be an AWESOME day!  Not to mention, I’ll be there, slinging treats.  What can beat that?!? Nothing.  That’s what. Not a damn thing.

Secondly, I recently bought what I like to call “almost booty shorts”.  This is HUGE for me.  I can’t even begin to describe how huge this is….I mean, I spent the better part of my life HATING my body, especially my thighs.  Let’s face it. They pretty much dominate my legs.  Anywho, I’ve apparently begun to embrace them OR I’ve quit caring what people think, because after the one ridiculously hot day this past week, I put my foot down and went out and bought some shorts!  No more WODing in capris.  It’s too freaking hot! So yeah, if you happen to be around the gym and you catch me in spandex, deal with it.  I have, and they are kind of making me feel awesome…..so if you rain on that for me, I might have to punch you square in the face! 🙂

Back to bacon.  I made this bacon egg scramble tonight to eat for breakfasts for the remainder of the week, and it was SO GOOD!  Plus, it was stupid easy to make.  I know the picture kind of sucks, but trust me, get after it!

bacon egg scramble

Bacon Breakfast Scramble

  • 8 strips bacon, diced
  • 6 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 bell peppers of choice (I used a little red, orange, and yellow) diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce (I used Frank’s Red Hot)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. In a deep skillet, cook up your bacon pieces.  The time will vary based on the thickness of your bacon, heat of the pan, etc.  Just be careful not to burn your bacon.  That’s a most tragic event.
  2. When your bacon is crisp, remove it from the skillet, leaving the bacon fat behind in the pan. Place it on a paper towel to drain some of the grease off.
  3. Add your peppers, onions, and garlic to your skillet.  Saute the veggies in the bacon fat for 5-7 minutes over medium high heat, or until they become translucent and begin to soften.
  4. When you veggies are cooked through, add back in your bacon. Cook together for a couple of minutes.
  5. Lastly, add in your scrambled eggs and your hot sauce.  Scramble the eggs into the mixture, keeping it moving around your pan so it doesn’t burn.
  6. When your eggs have cooked through, (3-5 minutes later) taste it for salt and pepper.  Season to your liking and serve!

I am planning on topping mine with some fresh avocado and smashing on breakfast like a CHAMP!  This is going to be a birthday breakfast of champions!  Enjoy your bacon, your thighs, and your birthday! Because I’m going to enjoy the HELL out of mine! Peace, Love, and Paleo.

-Meister

Falling Off the Wagon

vote

PSA for the day: HEY! Get active in your local government! VOTE SUCKAS!!

Let’s be honest, we’ve all done it.  We’ve ALL cheated at some point when it comes to food.  Some times turn out to be more epic fails than others, but nevertheless, slips/choices/occasions/poor judgement/saying screw it HAPPENS…..and when it happens, you find yourself in your own version of guilt-ridden hell.  For me, that included eating potato oles from a Taco John’s connected to a gas station in Mason City, Iowa, wearing my sunglasses indoors and just generally hating my life.  So let’s recap where things went awry on my mini-vacay, and most importantly, how I’m getting back ON the wagon!

Planning ahead was what saved me on the first half of this adventure.  Knowing I had a 6 hour trip ahead of me, I stocked up on quick and easy things to take in the cooler in the car.  I packed some deli meat, some plantain chips, and some grassfed beef sticks.  I also, thinking I was being smart by doing so, packed some hard cider.  The thing is, I knew I was going to want to drink, and I knew I was going to want something “beer” ish instead of wine or cocktails, so I planned for a gluten-free option.  ALL WAS WELL!  My folks were totally cool with scoping out a place for our dinner stop that would have options for me.  Have I mentioned that they are awesome?  Well they are.  I got myself a salad with plenty of meat and fresh veggies.  Managed to keep it totally paleo on evening 1 of the trip.  Kudos to me!

Day 2 was AMAZING!  I watched my cousin Jamie graduate and got to enjoy the many festivities that went with that!  Food wise, I was a mess from the minute the day started.  The ONLY breakfast options even remotely OK for me to eat at the hotel were these egg omelet things that had cheese in them. I made them work.  Lunch ended up being super late, and eaten at a Chipotle….so that got me a bit closer to my paleo love.  Loaded up on meat and veggies and guac!  Then I proceeded to begin my descent into stupidity.  I started drinking cider.  Dumb, dumb, dumb.  However, they were SUPER delicious!  Soooo delicious in fact, I chose to drink the ENTIRE sampler pack. Again, I’m an idiot.

crispin sampler

Yeah, those are each 22 oz. bottles.  I’m stupid sometimes.

Needless to say, the shit storm just continued from there.  Ate very little dinner because it was catered in Italian and I knew I didn’t want to touch pasta or it would be a disaster.  Little did I know, I was headed for disaster anyway!

So the cousins, the brother, and I decided to go out and enjoy some nightlife.  We were all very responsible and got a ride both ways.  Ain’t nobody got time for drunk driving.  NOT OK!  We ended up at a piano bar, had a GREAT time, and just had a fantastically silly evening.  It’s honestly been way too long since we’ve done that!  Although, I did realize I can no longer hang with 22 year olds.  It hurts too much.  I’ve moved well beyond that point in my life.

Fast forward to the next morning, and I was SICK!  I mean, super sick.  The revisiting your meals, sleeping on the bathroom floor, praying to God and swearing that you will never drink again, SICK! Needless to say, I was a disaster.  But again, since my Mom is awesome, she just kept saying, “I’ll come back in an hour and see if you are good to go yet!”  Oh yeah, this was also Mother’s Day, so I’m a complete A-Hole.  At some point, I asked my brother if he could perform an exorcism.  No luck there. So I loaded my sorry ass in the car, took some meds, drank a CRAP ton of water, and passed out in the back of the car……4 hours after our original departure time. About an hour later we pull into the aforementioned Taco John’s, my brother alerts me to the fact that I look like “a hot mess” and I proceed to smash on potato oles and a Diet Dr. Pepper.  Fixed my hangover RIGHT UP! But contributed to the continued feeling of grossness in my belly.

So, after all of this ridiculous rambling about my own stupidity, it has to be said that I at least know that I can ALWAYS come back to the paleo way.  Since I’ve gotten home, I’ve eaten as cleanly as possible. Loading up on lots of quality proteins and veggies in order to set my body straight.  Here are just a few delicious things I’ve made:

grill night

Little brother grilled the SHIT out of some steaks, asparagus, and zucchini! So good!

broiled salmon

Broiled salmon over a salad….eaten outside! Mostly because it’s too freaking hot in my house to eat inside…

So see!  Falls happen.  Hardcore.  It’s never too late and you are never too far gone to get back after it.  You are worth it, and your guts will be happy when you do! Peace, Love, and Paleo!

-Meister

Avocado Pesto

avo pesto

As the weekend draws to a close I need to put two things out there.  First, I’m sorry I haven’t posted until now…I realize it’s been a couple of days.  Things have been a wee bit crazy around here and I chose to support the people in my world instead of blog, my most sincere apologies.  Secondly, I have come to truly value spending time with people who build me up positively.  One of my oldest dearest friends is in town, and seeing her really lifted me up today.

This week is gearing up to be a crazy one!  Two fieldtrips at school means that I need to plan lunches that can be eaten on the go…..which on a Whole30, ends up looking like a bunch of random stuff thrown together.  Seriously, on Tuesday, I’m pretty sure I’m taking a pouch of salmon, a few clementines, some coconut flakes, and some celery and carrots.  It’s all “snack” foods, rolled together to make it count as a meal.  Meh, it happens!

Speaking of my Whole 30/90ish, tomorrow marks day 15!  In the world of a pure Whole30, that’s the halfway mark!  I’m so proud of my girl Ava…..we are sticking with it!  I’m definitely noticing bodily changes, and my incessant cravings for sugar are seeming to dwindle, so I’ll take it!  I even baked a pie, a FREAKING PIE, without tasting a single bit of the batter/mix/filling.  Willpower has returned to me, and boy does it feel good!

Onto food!  This avocado pesto started out as just regular pesto….until I realized I had a couple of avocados lying around that were going to go bad if I didn’t use them.  I figured, hell, they were green too, so what would it hurt to just toss them in?  It didn’t hurt a damn thing.  In fact, in increased the awesomeness of this pesto by about 10 fold!  Enjoy!

Avocado Pesto

  • 3 oz. fresh basil (I used the big, deep container from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 oz. fresh parsley (again, used the small pack from Trader Joe’s)
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup olive oil, give or take….depending on how thick you like your sauce
  1. In a food processor, add your fresh herbs, garlic cloves, and your salt. Pulse until herbs are chopped down into very small pieces, and the mix is well combined.
  2. Add in your avocados, lemon juice, and spices.  Pulse to smash up the avocados and mix it all together into a green paste.
  3. Stream in your olive oil until you achieve the consistency that you like.  I used right at 1/2 cup of olive oil, but you do whatever brings you joy!
  4. Taste to make sure it is seasoned well.  Don’t fear, the garlic will be pretty sharp at first….it will mellow a bit with time.  But I like the garlicky kick!  Roll with it!
  5. Use it to top spaghetti squash, or chicken, or pan seared pork chops AND spaghetti squash…..like I did!
  6. SMASH!
  7. Store the leftovers in the fridge……and feel free to serve it warm or at room temp.  It’s delish either way!

This is going to become a staple in my kitchen.  I can’t wait to toss some grilled veggies in it once the weather turns around for good!! Peace, Love, and Paleo!

-Meister