The Healthy Foodie http://thehealthyfoodie.com A Healthy Living Blog with a Strong Paleo Flavor! Hey, who says eating healthy has to be boring? Fri, 24 Apr 2015 11:00:52 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2 Cauliflower Au Gratin Italian Style http://thehealthyfoodie.com/cauliflower-au-gratin-italian-style/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/cauliflower-au-gratin-italian-style/#comments Fri, 24 Apr 2015 11:00:52 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672389 Do you miss pasta or think there’s no way that you could ever live without it? Well I’ve got just the thing for you… Now that we’ve made a huge batch of Italian Sausage and Olive Spaghetti Sauce, we’re gonna put it to good use. VERY good use. Today we’re making Cauliflower Au Gratin Italian Style. […]

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Cauliflower Au Gratin Italian Style | thehealthyfoodie.com

Do you miss pasta or think there’s no way that you could ever live without it? Well I’ve got just the thing for you…

Now that we’ve made a huge batch of Italian Sausage and Olive Spaghetti Sauce, we’re gonna put it to good use. VERY good use.

Today we’re making Cauliflower Au Gratin Italian Style. This is a classic dish from my childhood, only I kinda kicked up a notch now that I’m all grown up! I mean, I could defend myself in a kitchen as a child, but I wasn’t quite as talented as I am now. So back then, this dish consisted of bland, overcooked cauliflower smothered in some of my mom’s spaghetti sauce (which was absolutely fabulous, by the way. My mom is the one who taught me the art of making Spaghetti Sauce and I think she did an incredible job!) I would then top it all with mozzarella cheese, without any other form of ceremony.

Of course, I would then throw the whole thing in the oven and wait for that cheese to melt and get all nice and bubbly and golden for me. That much I already knew how to do.

But I was missing out on a few little details…

Cauliflower Au Gratin Italian Style | thehealthyfoodie.com

In recreating this dish, I first made sure that my cauliflower remained firm, but not so firm that it would be unpleasant to the palate, and that it wouldn’t release too much water. I mean SOME water releasing is inevitable, but I didn’t want to end up with a soupy mess at the bottom of my plate, if you know what I mean.

Secondly, I used a Spaghetti Sauce so delicious, so earthy and so nutritious that one would gladly eat it by the spoonful just like they would a stew… A Spaghetti Sauce that’s filled with huge chunks of Homemade Italian Sausage and tons of whole large pitted olives of both the green and black varieties.

That alone did SO MUCH for the dish.

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Italian Sausage and Olive Spaghetti Sauce http://thehealthyfoodie.com/italian-sausage-and-olive-spaghetti-sauce/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/italian-sausage-and-olive-spaghetti-sauce/#respond Tue, 21 Apr 2015 11:00:10 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672372 It had been ages since I’d last made Spaghetti Sauce. After all, what good is spaghetti sauce when you don’t even eat spaghetti? But then I got this crazy craving for a dish that I remembered having when I was a kid: Cauliflower Au Gratin, Italian Style. There really wasn’t much to it. It was […]

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Italian Sausage Olive Spaghetti Sauce | thehealthyfoodie.com

It had been ages since I’d last made Spaghetti Sauce. After all, what good is spaghetti sauce when you don’t even eat spaghetti?

But then I got this crazy craving for a dish that I remembered having when I was a kid: Cauliflower Au Gratin, Italian Style. There really wasn’t much to it. It was basically steamed cauliflower drowned in spaghetti sauce, topped with mounds of melted cheese, which was made all golden and crispy thanks to a nice little stay under the oven’s broiler.

Sitting myself down to one of these bowls of goodness was like pure heaven. So as soon as its image popped in my mind, I was done for. I knew I’d have to not only recreate it, but that I’d also have to kick it up a notch.

I decided that my cauliflower would be submerged under a thick layer of spicy, meaty and hearty Italian Sausage and Olive Spaghetti Sauce, which would be loaded with great big chunks of Homemade Italian Sausage meat and a very generous amount of tangy green and black olives.

I’m telling you, this was bar none the best spaghetti sauce I’ve eaten my entire life, and Lord only knows I’ve had my share! I remember a time when I would make a new batch every single week. I’d have pasta practically every day back then, you know…

These days are long gone, but now that I got to experience Cauliflower au Gratin once again, I get the feeling that Spaghetti Sauce will be happening a lot more often in this household. Maybe not every week, but much more regularly.

Alright, now if we’re gonna make some of that cauliflower dish, first we gotta make the sauce, right? Right.

Let’s get started, why don’t we?

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Braised Lamb and Wild Mushrooms Shepherd’s Pie http://thehealthyfoodie.com/braised-lamb-and-wild-mushrooms-shepherds-pie/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/braised-lamb-and-wild-mushrooms-shepherds-pie/#respond Sat, 18 Apr 2015 11:00:21 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672363 After I made my Simple Braised Leg of Lamb the other day, I was left with a lot of meat. A roast this size for a single person sure will last you a looooong time. So I decided to repurpose that meat and came up with the most delicious, most amazing Shepherd’s Pie I’ve ever eaten in my […]

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Earthy Shepherds Pie | TheHealthyFoodie.com

After I made my Simple Braised Leg of Lamb the other day, I was left with a lot of meat. A roast this size for a single person sure will last you a looooong time.

So I decided to repurpose that meat and came up with the most delicious, most amazing Shepherd’s Pie I’ve ever eaten in my entire life: a Braised Lamb and Wild Mushrooms Shepherd’s Pie.

In fact, while I was enjoying my very first serving of this comforting fare, I thought to myself that this is exactly what, by definition, Shepherd’s Pie should be: deliciously moist and juicy chunks of braised lamb meat topped with TONS of sauteed buttery wild mushrooms all brought together by a generous amount of the creamiest, dreamiest cauliflower mash. Words can’t even describe just how exquisite this dish is. It just needs to be experienced.

Are you drooling already?

Yeah, I thought so… I won’t let you wait any longer, let’s get busy cooking.

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Simple Braised Leg of Lamb http://thehealthyfoodie.com/braised-leg-of-lamb/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/braised-leg-of-lamb/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 11:00:35 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672326 It’s now officially official: if I had to choose but one kind of meat to eat for the rest of my life, I would have to choose lamb, without so much as a moment’s hesitation. Wow is that meat ever tasty! In fact, I’m almost out, so I’ll have to order another carcass soon, and I’m seriously […]

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Braised Leg of Lamb | TheHealthyFoodie.com

It’s now officially official: if I had to choose but one kind of meat to eat for the rest of my life, I would have to choose lamb, without so much as a moment’s hesitation.

Wow is that meat ever tasty!

In fact, I’m almost out, so I’ll have to order another carcass soon, and I’m seriously considering ordering two this time. Last year, I only ordered one, and I felt I always had to refrain from eating too much of it, because I wanted to make it last. So I’d only have it once or twice a month, at most. Pfft. That’s so very little. If I had my way, I would eat lamb several times a week.

Mind you, the farm I previously got my meat from, I could only order once a year and had to reserve my animal months in advance. And then taking possession of my meat had been super complicated. However, I recently found a new source where I can apparently order a full carcass and get it delivered right to my doorstep, cut to my specifications, in a matter of 10 days.

With that in mind, I think I can safely order just one… at a time! Plus, they also raise ducks, rabbits and Berkshire pigs. Oh my! I so can’t wait to get my hands on one of those. I’m planning on paying them a little visit next month and place an order at the same time. So excited! This is much better than going to the grocery store and choosing a steak off the counter!

But back to this Simple Braised Leg of Lamb… if you’re the kind of person who gets intimidated at the idea of making a roast because you’re always afraid that it’ll come out of the oven way too cooked, or way underdone, then braising is the ideal solution for you. You simply cannot go wrong with this method. The meat cooks at low temperature for an extended period of time, rendering it fall-off-the bone tender and crazy juicy.

I don’ think there is such a thing as “overbraising” meat… This, is a foolproof method. In other words, your success and your guests’ satisfaction are guaranteed. continue reading

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Greek Style Oven Roasted Rutabaga http://thehealthyfoodie.com/oven-roasted-rutabaga/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/oven-roasted-rutabaga/#comments Tue, 14 Apr 2015 11:00:17 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672304 So that’s it, guys, party’s over! As planned, I started my second round of Whole30® this past Sunday, so I’m done indulging in dairy, now… or Opera Cake, for that matter! Seriously, though, for some reason, I really craved dairy something fierce after I was done with my recent double round of Whole30®, so I might have […]

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So that’s it, guys, party’s over! As planned, I started my second round of Whole30® this past Sunday, so I’m done indulging in dairy, now… or Opera Cake, for that matter!

Seriously, though, for some reason, I really craved dairy something fierce after I was done with my recent double round of Whole30®, so I might have over-indulged over the last week. What’s really strange is that dairy isn’t even part of my regular diet anyway, so I fail to understand why I craved it so badly after “officially” abstaining for 60 days. I think I ate more cheese over the course of the last 10 days than I had in all of the preceding year.

But hey, I did fulfill the need for cheese and something pretty good came out of it, too. Just you wait ’til I share my recipe for Cauliflower au Gratin, Italian Style.

But I digress. It’s not cauliflower or cheese we’re having today, it’s rutabaga. Greek Style Oven Roasted Rutabaga!

Greek Style Oven Roasted Rutabaga | TheHealthyFoodie.com

I recently came across this recipe for Greek Style Roasted Potatoes and thought they looked soooooo good, I just had to have some, like BAD! But despite them being Paleo and even Whole30 approved now, white potatoes are something that I don’t really eat anymore. I guess to me, they just don’t do enough for my body in the nutrition department and are way too high in carbs to be worthy of making it to my plate.

No biggie, though. Unlike dairy, I hardly miss white potatoes (even though I used to eat TONS of them in my former life) There are so many other vegetables to choose from, and so many that make brilliant replacement for potatoes, too. In this case, rutabaga was the perfect candidate. In fact, I think that for this particular recipe, rutabaga is probably even superior to potatoes. It just has so much more flavor to it.

In fact, when I made this dish, my daughter and son-in-law were paying me a visit and they literally wolfed it down. They said it was AH-MA-ZING! (And seriously, am I not absolutely blessed that they should come and visit me at least once a week with the little one? The least I could do is put some good food on the table for them to enjoy while they’re here… ) 

Alright, what do you say we get busy cooking? These are crazy easy to do, you’ll see. continue reading

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Paleo Opera Cake http://thehealthyfoodie.com/paleo-opera-cake/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/paleo-opera-cake/#comments Sat, 11 Apr 2015 11:00:30 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672255 When I look at the length of this post and think back on the experience that the making of this Paleo Opera Cake has been, the first thing that comes to mind is NEVER AGAIN! For this cake demands SERIOUS time and efforts in the kitchen in order to come to life, and I do […]

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Paleo Opera Cake | thehealthyfoodie.com

When I look at the length of this post and think back on the experience that the making of this Paleo Opera Cake has been, the first thing that comes to mind is NEVER AGAIN!

For this cake demands SERIOUS time and efforts in the kitchen in order to come to life, and I do mean serious. We’re talking several hours of active prep work and even more hours of resting / cooling time. In fact, I don’t think that you could make this cake in one go, even if you wanted to. This is the kind of dessert that will have you spend a lot of time in the kitchen over the course of several days. And it might even have you curse a little bit from time to time, too.

But… just one bite from the finished product will have you forget aaaaaall about that time you spent slaving in the kitchen.

In case you’ve never tasted an Opera before, let me explain: this cake is pure bliss, pure heaven, pure perfection. We’re talking thin sheets of delicate Joconde almond cake drenched in sweet coffee syrup, topped with layers of melt-in-your-mouth coffee buttercream and silky smooth, intensely dark chocolate ganache. A luscious layer of semi-firm, dark chocolate glaze crowns this heavenly treat.

Paleo Opera Cake | thehealthyfoodie.com

Honestly, Opera has got to be my ultimate favorite cake in the whole wide world, followed very closely by cheesecake. I’d already managed to create the perfect dairy free version of the latter, but I’d been putting off making the Paleo Opera because I knew just how much work it would be. I’m glad I finally worked up the courage to do it, though, ‘cuz honestly, it’s a masterpiece!

Okay, so like I said, this post is already super LOOOONG, and I’ve already talked way too much. I’ll now save my words to show you how to make the cake so you can judge for yourself just how crazy good it truly is.

One last thing, before we start: I couldn’t take pictures of all the steps, there would’ve been way too many, and some steps were also pretty hard to photograph, seeing as how I only have 2 hands, you know… so I tried to include the most relevant (or mouth watering) captures and I’ll explain the steps as best I can with words.

Ready? Let’s do this. For seriously, in the end, this cake might be a lot of work, but it’s so friggin’ totally worth it. continue reading

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Sweet and Fudgy Coconut Spread http://thehealthyfoodie.com/sweet-and-fudgy-homemade-coconut-spread/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/sweet-and-fudgy-homemade-coconut-spread/#comments Thu, 09 Apr 2015 11:00:08 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672228 Shortly before I started my recent double round of Whole30, I created something a little bit similar to this by combining a few near empty jars of existing nut butters that were sitting in my pantry… Seeing as how I had elected to void nuts from my diet for 60 entire days, I wanted to rid my kitchen of any and all […]

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Sweet and Fudgy Coconut Spread | thehealthyfoodie.com

Shortly before I started my recent double round of Whole30, I created something a little bit similar to this by combining a few near empty jars of existing nut butters that were sitting in my pantry… Seeing as how I had elected to void nuts from my diet for 60 entire days, I wanted to rid my kitchen of any and all traces of nut butter before I began my challenge.

Unfortunately, or fortunately I’m not sure, the stuff that I created that day was beyond amazing. I knew it was something I would have to try to recreate as soon as my Whole30 would be over. And so for 60 days, I had this decadent, this heavenly, this delicious Sweet and Fudgy Coconut Spread on my mind.

It was only 2 days after my Whole30 was over that I took out my trusty Vitamix and eagerly threw in all the ingredients that I thought would produce the desired results.

And then I had to wait for 2 additional days… 2 long, excruciating days, before I finally got to taste my coconut spread and find out if I’d succeeded at replicating the delicacy I’d enjoyed 2 months earlier.. Because you see, this baby needs time to rest and settle after it’s been processed, so it can to get back to its rightful, delightful texture and consistency.

So, was it worth the wait, you ask?

Oh hell yeah! So very much so. This stuff is even better than the blend I had concocted previously.  This stuff is pure crack, I tell you. PURE CRACK.

Now, I probably shouldn’t do this to you, but I’ll walk you through all the steps so you can make your own at home.

Yeah, I know. I’m a very bad person. At least, let me apologize in advance… continue reading

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Shepherd’s Pie with an Indian Twist http://thehealthyfoodie.com/shepherds-pie-with-an-indian-twist/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/shepherds-pie-with-an-indian-twist/#respond Tue, 07 Apr 2015 11:00:59 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672192 This is not your typical Shepherd’s Pie, people… This, I think, is candy pretending to be Shepherd’s Pie. It’s sweet, it’s warm and buttery and it’s oh so comforting. We’re talking creamy ground beef and pan-fried tidbits of ripe plantain, brought together by a velvety smooth layer of spiced sweet potato and butternut squash puree. Oh yeah! It tastes just like paradise, I tell you! […]

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Shepherds Pie Indian Style | thehealthyfoodie.com

This is not your typical Shepherd’s Pie, people… This, I think, is candy pretending to be Shepherd’s Pie.

It’s sweet, it’s warm and buttery and it’s oh so comforting. We’re talking creamy ground beef and pan-fried tidbits of ripe plantain, brought together by a velvety smooth layer of spiced sweet potato and butternut squash puree.

Oh yeah! It tastes just like paradise, I tell you!

If you have not yet tried the combination of plantain and beef together, trust me, you really have to. I was highly skeptical too, the first time I got to taste it, but I was immediately sold. It’s got to be one of the most delicious flavor combos I’ve ever tasted. And binding the two of them together with a deliciously spiced squash and sweet potato puree was sheer brilliance, me thinks.

I’m telling you, this is the kind of dish that you’ll just want to keep eating forever. It will also bring a particularly sparkling start to your day; try it for breakfast, you’ll see exactly what I mean.

There’s just no way your day could go wrong after it’s had such an amazing opening…    continue reading

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Quick and Easy Paleo Szechuan Beef http://thehealthyfoodie.com/quick-and-easy-paleo-szechuan-beef/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/quick-and-easy-paleo-szechuan-beef/#comments Sat, 04 Apr 2015 11:00:55 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672163 Good News Everyone! (I think my son watches a little too much Futurama… it seems to be sticking with me!) Today I’ve got another recipe of the Quick and Easy kind for ya: Quick and Easy Paleo Szechuan Beef Mind you, I’m sorta half thinking now that the kind of meat that I used for this particular dish might not be readily available everywhere […]

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Quick Szechuan Beef | thehealthyfoodie.con

Good News Everyone! (I think my son watches a little too much Futurama… it seems to be sticking with me!) Today I’ve got another recipe of the Quick and Easy kind for ya: Quick and Easy Paleo Szechuan Beef

Mind you, I’m sorta half thinking now that the kind of meat that I used for this particular dish might not be readily available everywhere across the globe. There’s a chance that it may be something “regional”, something that’s more typical to my part of the world. I’m not exactly sure, though… I can’t seem to find much information about it on the Internet. So I’m hoping that maybe you guys can enlighten me and offer some insight.

Here in Québec, we call this specific cut of beef Chinese Fondue Slices. It’s usually made from beef sirloin that’s been sliced super thinly, so it cooks almost instantly. Typically, this meat is used in making Chinese Fondue, or Hot Pot, but it’s also often used to make sandwiches, such as Submarines or Philly Cheese Steak, and to make quick and easy sautés such as the one we’ll be making today.

I personally rarely eat fondue, but I love to keep this specific cut of meat in the freezer at all times. It thaws and cooks super quickly and is extremely convenient to have handy when I need a quick protein fix! continue reading

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Broccoli Carrot and Orange Slaw http://thehealthyfoodie.com/broccoli-carrot-and-orange-slaw/ http://thehealthyfoodie.com/broccoli-carrot-and-orange-slaw/#comments Thu, 02 Apr 2015 11:00:36 +0000 http://thehealthyfoodie.com/?p=3436672130 That’s it guys, I’m done! I just completed 2 rounds of Whole30, back to back. In retrospect, I’m thinking that perhaps doing 60 consecutive days of Whole30 might have been a little bit much, especially at this time of year when winter is already taking its toll on me. Towards the end of the cold […]

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Broccoli Carrot Orange Slaw | thehealthyfoodie.com

That’s it guys, I’m done! I just completed 2 rounds of Whole30, back to back.

In retrospect, I’m thinking that perhaps doing 60 consecutive days of Whole30 might have been a little bit much, especially at this time of year when winter is already taking its toll on me. Towards the end of the cold season, I always tend to feel kind of… not depressed, but not my usual super peppy and lively self either, you know; just like there’s some kind of weight on my shoulders and I just can’t wait to see it being lifted. HA! and speaking of lifting weights, that is the only thing that seems to make me happy, nowadays. My favorite time of the day is definitely that which I spend working out in my humble little home gym.

Also, my birthday is coming up soon and since it happens to coincide with Easter this year, the baker in me wants to make a fab cake for the occasion. Whole30ing and having cake on the mind doesn’t necessarily walk hand in hand. I’ve been pondering for days now as to whether I should make a Classic Opera Cake (the paleo way, of course) or a Sweet and Salty Cashew Maple Pie, or a super dense and fudge-y Mayo Chocolate Cake, or a Tatin Style Apple and Maple Caramel Cake… I can’t seem to decide, my mind is just like this big land of confusion that’s drowning in its own drool.

To make my brains’ condition even worse, there’s this guy whom I’m still madly in love with and who, despite my not seeing him anymore, totally refuses to get out of my system. I still think about him every minute of every hour of every passing day. His deep blue eyes, enigmatic smile and soft, angelic voice are still haunting my memories; I honestly never thought that it was even possible to feel so strongly and for so long for a half-stranger, but apparently it is. It’s even making it hard for me to function normally…

Broccoli Carrot Orange Slaw | thehealthyfoodie.com

And so I’ve been feeling particularly blah these past couple of weeks. I always struggle to find something to say about the recipes that I create and share with you all. I feel terribly boring and seem to have lost my habitual sense of humor. Plus, I tend to get discouraged with my pictures lately: I feel they always look the same and lack a certain vibrancy; the light is just so dull and cold. I never seem to be quite satisfied with them. But that’s probably the blah in me talking…

Luckily, I’m planning on taking a little bit of time off in May, that should do me some good. Not having to think about cooking or about how to make a dish look its best or how to describe it for a full week will feel kind of nice… I imagine.

That said, I haven’t changed my mind about doing another round of Whole30 almost just as soon as this current one is over. I think I still have it in me to come up with all kinds of Whole30 friendly dishes. And I don’t think that you guys are fed up with being served them either, at least not just yet…

Take this Broccoli Carrot and Orange Slaw, for instance. I’d made it without really logging any of the ingredients one night when my daughter was visiting, but then I got so many requests for the recipe that I decided I just had to redo it and share it this time. continue reading

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