Tag Archives: paleo

Spicy Chili-Garlic Stir-Fry

18 Aug

This dish is by far one of my favorite paleo creations yet.  It is simple, easy, and deliciously SPICY.  I used 1 rounded tablespoon of chili garlic sauce and found the dish to be delightfully zingy in that good almost-painful-but-not-quite kind of way; if you prefer less heat, use less.  You could also make this dish with thinly sliced pork or beef.  Or, with shrimp — though if you use shrimp, I’d cook all the veggies and the chili sauce first, then add the shrimp at the end to cook through as they will only take a few minutes.  One of my favorite parts of this dish was the shrooms.  J does not eat shrooms so I almost never get to have them.  When he is gone working his overnights, I sometimes splurge on a shroomy dish I can have all to myself in his absence.  If you don’t like shrooms, just leave them out!  (How many times can I say “shrooms” in this paragraph?  SHROOMS!)  Also, I used frozen vegetables, and I did not thaw them before cooking.  I just threw them in frozen, put a lid on, and the steam cooked them to perfection.  This will serve two hungry people; I made it when I was home alone, ate half for dinner that night and split the remaining half over lunch and dinner the next day.  Yum!  🙂

Spicy Chili-Garlic Stir Fry
Serves 2

Ingredients:
2 Tbs coconut oil
3/4lb to 1lb raw boneless chicken breast, thinly sliced
1/3 cup whole raw almonds
2 1/2 cups mixed vegetables (I used broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower from the freezer section)
1/2 cup mixed bell pepper strips
6oz baby button mushrooms, stems removed and schrooms sliced
1-2 Tbs chili garlic sauce (I use Huy Fond Foods brand)
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:
Heat coconut oil over medium heat in large saute pan until hot (a bit of moisture flicked in the oil will sizzle.  BE CAREFUL.)  Add sliced chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through.  Add almonds and cook about 3 minutes.  Add frozen mixed vegetables, bell peppers, button mushrooms, and chili garlic sauce.  Put a lid on the pan and cook until vegetables are heated through and mushrooms are tender, a few minutes.  Check frequently and stir as needed to prevent sticking/burning.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Serve.

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And so it begins…

3 Aug

Sambie’s Challenge: Level I

Backstory:
     At first glance, you’d think a half-Gelfling Ranger in my position wouldn’t need much strength to get through the day. If you’re a City person, chances are you’d think my job at the Social Service Unit is mostly cushy, State-funded desk work that lets me get fat on government pensions and undisclosed perks. I guarantee that if you walk a 10-hour shift in my shoes, you’ll see why you’d be wrong. Sure, I guess you could say I’m one of those pigs who works for the State. Granted, it’s the signature of a Statie ‘crat none of us have ever seen that graces the corner of my pay waiver every two weeks. And sure, I occasionally get stuck behind the desk in the State office at City Center, cranking out all the forms I neglected to “complete timely.”Mostly, though, I’m out here, coaxing my old SUV down these gods-forgotten, pocked roads to “deal with” the Enclave. That’s the gist of my job, as far as the State is concerned: keep the Clavers quiet, keep ’em high if I have to, just do whatever it takes to keep them from bleeding out of their compound into Proper Society. Sounds like a real peach of a job, right? I bet you’re wondering what crime I committed to get stuck with this gig.
     Actually, nothing. I chose this job as quick as it came up on the social services Roster wheel downtown. Prior to, I’d been suffocating as a desk jockey, a backup sidekick to some ego-inflated ‘crat whose primary goal in life is to do as little as possible and wallow in his status as an “elite” Statie, fat on money and power and State-funded hedonism. Basically, whenever he got stuck with a piece of grit work, anything that required the slightest mental or physical exertion, he and his #1 sidekick would find some crafty, bulletproof way to pawn it off on me and then take all the credit. So yeah, when Clave duty came up on the Roster, I jumped at the chance. Nobody else wanted the job, which meant I got to be assigned solo. Nobody really even wants to know how I’m doing; they’d know if I was dead because Clave duty’d come up on the Roster again, and as long as that doesn’t happen they’re all happy to leave me out here to work alone.
     The Enclave is a huge heavily-forested compound on the outskirts of the outskirts of City Proper where all the social refuse collects, like trash in the corner of an alley. There’s a lot of moss druggies here, thieves, political insurrectionists, union boys, and young kids who failed–by genetics or on purpose–to survive some element of the City’s strict culling system. In other words, it’s intense out here; these people are as real as it gets because life saw them for who they are and spit in their faces. I’m the liason between City and Clave, because as the State found out after its most recent failed attempt to starve them out, Clavers are here to stay. Clavers didn’t trust me when I got here a few months ago, till they found out I had Gelfling blood in me. Oh yeah; there’s a lot of Gelfings and Gelfling halfies out here too. Few things’ll land you in Clave quicker than Gelfling DNA; City folk can’t seem to stomach us. When it comes to my genetic history, what the State doesn’t know keeps me safe, for now. Somehow I managed to have almost no Gelfing traits in my appearance, though I can manage a decent dreamfast and I’m unnaturally quick on my feet. Clavers still aren’t sold on me, but seems like I’m breaking through a little bit. Best way to do that? Get dirty. When I’m out here checking the water and nutri rations or dropping off a load of sanctioned moss, I keep my ears open for what’s going on and jump in. Hunting some wood cat? I’m there. Moving rock in the steam tunnel? I’m there. Climbing the crumbling scaffold to collect coveted barred finch eggs? Yep, I’m there too. All that running, chucking, and climbing means I’m starting to look a little bit like a Claver…that City flab is slowly being replaced by hard muscle that I have to keep carefully hidden under my dress uniform at the State office. This is life on the boundary lines of power, and I find I love walking that tightrope. I live alone, I prefer to work alone, and in the Clave nobody cares who you are as long as you don’t flinch when a raging, green-eyed moss junkie comes at you with a stonehammer. Clave duty means getting Clavers to trust me enough to let me keep them safe from the State. I can do that, but first, I have to be able to prove I’m strong enough, physically and mentally, to bear the responsibility.

Stats:
Name: Sambie
Half-Gelfling Ranger, Clave duty
Level 1
STR 2 / DEX 1 / STA 3 / CON 3 / WIS 4 / CHA 2
Weight: 197lbs
Height: 5’8.5″
Body fat % – ?

Goals:

Fitness/Nutrition
–Run 1 mile at 4.0mph or higher on the treadmill without stopping or walking STA +3 DEX +1
–Perform a 2-minute plank with good form STR +3
–Eat true paleo all day, one day each week CON +2 CHA +1

Life
–Meditate for 25 min/day 6 days/wk and 45min 7th day (weekend day) WIS +3 CHA +2

Personal bonuses:
Extra gold stars if I can run 1mile on both the treadmill and my trail loop without stopping/walking; trail loop includes two moderately death-inducing hills, a row of crabapple trees that require ducking under, slippery grass, and the potential for neighborhood animals to eat me.

Extra gold stars if I add true paleo meals to days of the week besides my all-day-paleo day.

Extra gold stars if I add in a weekly dharma study session to supplement the meditation practice.

Paleo Sketti

2 Aug

I’ve been doing a lot of reading up on paleo lately, getting some good ideas for recipes I want to try.  One thing I read about yesterday was alternatives to pasta.  Of course we all know about spaghetti squash, so named because it mimics spaghetti in appearance.  But, some other bloggers and posters mentioned using raw broccoli slaw as the base upon which to pile their favorite pasta sauce.  This sounded sufficiently delicious and weird, so of course I had to try it.

Here’s what I did:
1 Tbs olive oil (would have used coconut oil, but le jar is empty. Boo!)
1lb ground pork
1/4lb ground beef

  • Heated the oil until shimmery in a medium saucepan.  Added the ground meat and cooked until well-browned, using a wooden spoon to break up the meat into crumbly bits.

Minced garlic
Oregano
Crushed red pepper
Fennel seed

  • Added these herbs to the browned meat, to taste.  I didn’t measure.  You can add however much you want, or swap these out for different herbs altogether.

Freshly ground black pepper
Salt

  • Stirred in some fresh coarse-ground black pepper and about 1/2 tsp salt, give or take.  Add a little salt, taste the sauce, and add more if you need to.  Remember you can always add more, but you can’t take it out if you add too much salt. Simmered the sauce at this point for about 25 minutes on low.

Raw broccoli slaw mix

  • Put 1 cup of broccoli slaw mix (raw, plain) in a bowl and microwaved it for about 30 secs to warm it up (hot pasta sauce on cold vegetables?  Blech).  Scooped 1 cup of meat sauce onto the slaw mix

Grated parmesan cheese

  • Okay, not totally paleo, but I have a small wedge of parm left that I need to use up, and I don’t want to waste food.  I put about 2 Tbs of grated parm on top, where it got all melty and delicious

Verdict?  Seriously yummy, filling, and does not leave my stomach feeling like I ate a brick, the way a heap of pasta does.  This will become a regular meal for me.  Paleo or not, it’s just delicious!  🙂

(p.s. Sometimes I might post pictures with meal ideas, sometimes not.  This isn’t a “food blog” really…I already have one of those, and taking photos of everything I cook gets tiring.  So, I just gobbled up my dinner this time around…maybe I’ll get a photo next time!)

Wednesday LinkDump

2 Aug

This is why I’m going paleo.

This is what I’m training for.  And also this.

I have to make these cookies ASAP.

Here is Maru playing with a box: