The Amazing Butternut Squash Soup That Everyone Should Make At Least Once

The Amazing Butternut Squash Soup That Everyone Should Make At Least Once

I found this recipe from a woman who is definitely my lazy cooking soul sister.

Butternut squash soup — oh, the yum! And OH SO EASY!

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Easy Green Beans

I’m back! I’ve been away cooking up something AWESOME:

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My absence is explained by a long, bizarre list of nausea triggers including computer, tv, and iPhone screens as well as actually healthy food. (Chemical-laden, microwaved Franken-food left me feeling a-okay! Or… at least… it actually stayed in mah belly long enough to get digested. Unlike, you know, vegetables or water or anything else Paleo-friendly.) But now I’m into my second trimester and, most days, I feel pretty great! (And even without quite following Paleo for a while, I became oh-so-slender!)

So, here’s a great recipe I was drafting before The New Baby made his-or-her presence known.

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I’ve made this dish several times. I had no idea I could like green beans so much!

This recipe is super quick and easy. It’s so fast to make that I even made it as a snack for myself when I had only 45 minutes left to feed and entertain Mini Me (that is, my firstborn!), put something scrumptious together for dinner, and clean up the kitchen to boot. (I’m being a Domestic Goddess for Halloween this year and need to start practicing.) Do you have any idea how long it normally takes me to cook? Especially since the little one came along? Any prep time estimates on a recipe, I need to multiply it by 2-3. On a good day.

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But this recipe really does take only five minutes. Even for me!! 🙂

And it’s soooooooooooooooooooooooooo yummy. Even my husband says so. And we don’t agree all that often on what is yummy!

Easy Greensy Beansies

(Okay… um… I lost the “recipe,” but it’s pretty easy to wing it. So here’s the recipe, shared in that good old-fashioned style (no exact measurements).)

A dollop of coconut oil
Fresh green beans, ends trimmed 
(you may use frozen green beans if you’re feeling Lazy-o, but fresh really does taste much better!)
A healthy splash of coconut aminoes (a soy sauce substitute)
A spoonful of honey (optional — skip if you’re doing Whole30. The beans will still be delicious without the honey, just a little more zippy.)

1) Heat coconut oil in a pan. The coconut oil lends a really wonderful flavor to the beans.

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2) When the oil is melted, you’re ready to cook the beans. Use fresh beans, frozen in a pinch. (I took these pictures when I was “in a pinch.”)

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3) Stir the beans around in your hot coconut oil. Then add your coconut aminoes (aka “Paleo soy sauce”). Stir to coat.

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4) If you’re doing Whole30… congratulations, you can skip this step! Otherwise, mellow out some of the zippiness with some honey:

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Yes, I live in Santa Barbara County. Be jealous.

Again, stir to coat.

5) The beans are done when they reach the tenderness you desire. Yum yum! Enjoy! 🙂

Simple Smoky Salmon

Hello all! I’ve been away from the blog for a week or so. The Hubz and I went to Visalia, California for some house hunting, some sightseeing in Sequoia National Park (I saw the biggest tree in the world!!), and generally just a nice weekend away. Since then, I’ve been busy wrangling with some bills and cheering on Little Miss as she gets more and more confident with walking and learns new words every day.

 

But here is a delicious and VERY SIMPLE recipe!

I wanted to cook up some delicious salmon a couple days ago, and with the little one I didn’t want to mess with all the fire at the grill (as fun as that might be). Soooo I found a new way to impart a delicious smoky flavor to my fish. (I suppose this would work with any tasty little fish your heart desires.)

Simple Smoky Salmon

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(You only get to see the end of the salmon because my husband nommed a bunch of it before I could take a picture.)

 

Ingredients

Salmon fillet (or other fish), 1-1.5 pounds
1 tsp Liquid Smoke
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)

 

Directions

1) Cover a broiler pan with aluminum foil for super-easy cleanup. (Just in case you don’t know what a broiler pan is, check the drawer under your oven and there’s probably one there. It looks like a cross between a cookie sheet and a giant cheese grater.)

2) Place your salmon, skin side down, on the covered broiler pan.

3) Combine Liquid Smoke, olive oil, and pepper in a small bowl. Mix well.

4) Pour it gracefully over the fish.

5) Allow the fish to marinate in the smoky sauce for half an hour to an hour.

6) Carefully drain the excess oil, because you’re about to broil that bad boy and I assume you don’t want to burn down your place of residence. (Humble thanks to my husband for pointing that out to me!)

7) Adjust your oven rack to the top rack, and place your fish on the broiler pan directly under the broiler.

8) Broil 10 minutes.

9) Guard it from your spouse.

10) When you’ve nommed to your heart’s content, just scoop up that foil and bin it. Put the broiler pan away. Don’t wash it. Seriously. Just go enjoy your healthy life.

 

Egg Drop Soup with Spinach

On my Day Two, I learned a couple important things about Whole30.

1) If, let’s just say for example, you’re doing great on keeping to the Whole30, and have even done a great job navigating lunch at a friend’s house while keeping to Whole30, when your youngster shoves part of a cookie into your mouth when you’re not paying attention, not all is lost!

How did I learn that? Because sometime in the afternoon on Day Two, I started to notice I had a bit of a headache. I Googled “Whole30 headache” and, voila! It means you’re on the right track.

2) The second thing I learned: corn is considered a grain for the purposes of the Whole30. No corn for you!

That one put me in a bit of a pickle (are pickles allowed? I can’t stand ’em, so I don’t know). My go-to quickie meal is soup, and my go-to vegetable for the soup is a can of corn. I keep a case of them in my garage.

So… I made something new! 🙂 This tasty and satisfying recipe had plenty of leftovers and fed me for much of Days 2 and 3. I opted to add chicken to my bowl instead of to the soup itself because I don’t want to eat chicken for every meal — yikes!

Egg Drop Soup with Spinach

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Serves 4.

Ingredients

32 oz. (2 cartons) chicken stock or broth
6 eggs
3/4 cup frozen spinach
Chicken as desired

Directions

1) Heat chicken stock to boiling.

2) Whisk eggs together in a bowl. When the chicken stock is boiling, slowly trickle the egg into the chicken stock. (Or, if you’re really lazy like I was, crack your eggs directly over your soup and carefully trickle them in as best you can. You may get some tasty yolk balls like I did. BIG egg drops.) The egg will cook in the stock.

3) Add the spinach. Cook five minutes, or until the eggs are thoroughly cooked and the spinach is hot.

4) If desired, add some leftover chicken to your bowl, then ladle in some of your tasty soup.

Dinner: Chicken (Crock) Pot (Crustless) Pie

I got a huge pack of chicken for a great price. I tore the package open, dumped it unceremoniously into a crock pot, added a couple inches of chicken stock, and set it to cook on low all day long.

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This action was Lazeo (“lazy-o”) foresight at its best.

1) Crock pots are very easy to use.
2) Crock pots are very easy to clean.
3) I can cook everything at once. Less than a minute of prep time, and I have cooked chicken to last me for days!
4) Crock pots are foolproof. Tender, juicy, perfect chicken. No burning. No drying. Just perfection. Perfect like this blog.
5) The chicken I bought was so cheap-o because it came with bones and skin and all such grisly things. In a crock pot, all of that just falls away. It’s so easy.

So, this evening, I let my daughter occupy herself with the leftover spaghetti that is not Whole30-approved,

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got out some tongs, and gently lifted some of my perfect chicken out of the crock pot and into my dinner bowl. Then I ladled three scoops of the chicken stock into my bowl — enough to make it “saucy” without turning it into soup.

Then I rifled through the freezer, pausing a few times to cower as things collapsed all over me. I found some veggies that matched my hankering for some chicken pot pie:

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and, not having quite enough of that perfect foresight to put the veggies right in the crock pot with the chicken, I steamed the whole bag:

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then poured it into my bowl and stirred it around. Voila!

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VERY tasty, VERY easy, SUPER satisfying.

Chicken (Crock) Pot (Crustless) Pie

Chicken, cooked in crock pot (as much as you can fit, leftovers are a plus for Lazeo Paleo)
Chicken stock or broth — enough to cover the bottom of the crock pot about two inches deep
16 oz. Paleo-friendly vegetable blend (no legumes allowed)

Place all your chicken into the crock pot. Add the chicken broth, and set to cook on low for six hours.

When you are almost ready to eat, start steaming the vegetable blend.

When the chicken is finished cooking and you are ready to eat, use tongs to take chicken shreds from the crock pot directly into your bowl. Ladle enough of the chicken stock into your bowl to cover the bottom of the bowl about 1/2 inch deep.

Stir in your steamed vegetables.

Enjoy!

Lazy-o Paleo Lunch: “Tuna Salad”

Well! My first day of the Whole30 Challenge has gone OK!

At lunch time, I opened my fridge and noticed some nice bags of organic salad blend I’d recently snagged on a sale at Fresh and Easy. But…

Here’s an official list of what NOT to eat on the Whole30. I couldn’t find a salad dressing in my fridge that complied. I thought I had one for a minute — no added sugar, all organic pronounceable ingredients — but a tiny amount of “organic alcohol.” No alcohol allowed, not even as an ingredient.

So, for lunch I invented “Paleo Tuna Salad”:

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The recipe:

1) Take however much you like of a ready-to-eat salad blend of your choice, such as:

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2) Open a can of tuna.
3) Drain the can of tuna.
4) Scoop the tuna out on top of your lettuce.

That’s it! No dressing. No mayo.
Feel free to add other fresh veggies of small sizes if you have them handy (I didn’t).

Ta-da! I was really surprised by how tasty it actually was. I will probably enjoy it again this month.

That said — I recommend it as a side item rather than as a main course. By the end… well… that was a bit much in-yo’-face tuna.