Tag Archives: Protein

Organic Crock Pot Pulled Pork

Hello!  I am still here! University is so time consuming, I have had to prioritize extra curricular activities and unfortunately, blogging (and even most new recipe creating) had to be benched. Looks like my last post was in December which was around my last school break. At this time I am only in two Summer courses which is allowing me to visit some of my pre-student activities.  Yesterday I spend a whole evening in the kitchen.  So great.  I have missed this.

The post I have for you today might seem a little off from my usual as I tend to not eat a lot of meat but, I think it has a place for most of us and if I am going to eat meat then you know its going to be the healthiest version. And, creating healthier versions of classic recipes IS my thing!

wpid-2015-05-15-10.13.56.jpg.jpegPulled Pork. So delicious.  But, so many things can be wrong with this food. For one, Pigs are generally not a well raised animal and often one of the first meats health advisers suggest you omit.  I stopped eating it years ago and I guess just got used to it not being part of my diet.  Except, now, my butcher offers Locally Raised Organic Free-Range No-Hormone Pork. I checked it out, it is legit, these pudgy pink guys get a homemade organic diet including alfalfa (so they even eat their greens) and then get turned out to roam free and play little little piggies should do.

As for ingredients, I use only the best organic spices, coconut sugar and apple cider vinegar. When the meat is done I use the liquid to make the bbq sauce. So easy and unbelievably delicious.  I serve it up with a chili-lime coleslaw and avocado filled rye bun or, in taco with lots of cilantro.  The only thing of note with regards to cooking is I think it depends on your crock pot. Most people say about 8 hours for pulled pork but I start mine on low for about 4 hours then turn it down to warm for about 20 more. Just leave it in there until it falls apart.  If you want some extra bbq sauce that goes well with it I use Simply Natural Organic Barbecue Sauce which is made up of pretty much the same flavoring and of course all natural and organic.

Large Crock Pot
Cast Iron Fry Pan
3-5     lb Pork Shoulder
3         tablespoons High Heat Oil (Grapeseed, Sunflower or Avocado)

3         tablespoons Hot Paprika
3         tablespoons Coconut Sugar
2         tablespoons Mineral or Kosher salt
1          tablespoon Garlic Powder
1          tablespoon Onion powder
1          teaspoon Mustard Powder
1          teaspoon Cumin Powder
2          teaspoons Fresh Ground Black Pepper
1/2      teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

2 3/4  cups Water
3           tablespoons Tomato Paste
1/2       cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4       cup Honey

In a medium size bowl, combine all of the spices and coconut sugar then rub on Pork

Heat Oil in cast iron pan then brown all sides of the Pork

Deglaze pan with 3/4 cup of water and then add to crock pot with another 2 cups of water, tomato paste, vinegar, honey and all leftover spices

Place browned pork into crock pot and spoon some of the sauce over it.

Cook on low for 8 to 24 hours, at least until the meat is tender enough to be easily shredded with a fork.

When finished, pour the sauce into a pot on the stove top and simmer to reduced to a thicker bbq sauce

Serve with coleslaw and crusty buns.

*Can be frozen

Deer Stew and Burgers

I am actually posting this one a year later…where does the time go….an amazingly cool girl friend of mine gifted me deer from her first ever hunt last Winter, pretty awesome and kinda special I think (I knitted her a toque). Actually, irronically, knitting is the reason I haven’t been food blogging as much ha but anyways….  Now I don’t eat a lot of meat but when I do its always free range or grass fed and a major bonus if hunted in its natural environment by a friend none-the-less! I understand hunting could be a sensitive topic for some but personally, I love wild sourced meat and if you’ve actually hunted and prepared it yourself, even better.   If you’re a meat eater I think it’s the most respectful way to get it and by any comparison with the factory-produced, chemical-drenched, hormone filled, fat-laden pseudo-meat that too many North 

deer stew

Americans grow obese and sick from eating today, wild meat — fish, fowl or red — is brilliantly natural, inimitably healthy and morally superior.  Ahem …..ok on that note here is my deer burgars and my take on a classic simple deer stew recipe.   And much love to Heather for sharing her deer.

Deer Stew

1              teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1              teaspoon dried Oregano
1              teaspoon dried Thyme
1              teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/4         cup Flour (I use a mix of brown and sweet rice floor)
2-3          tablespoons high heat oil like Grape Seed
3               large cloves Garlic, crushed
3              large Sweet Onions, coarsely chopped
1              lb Carrots, sliced
1              Bay Leaf
1/2         cup Red Wine
1              tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (I use gluten-free)
3              cups Low Sodium Broth  (I use sea salted vegetable)
2              lbs  Potatoes, cubed or sliced (I use mixed little gems and just cut them in half)
2              tablespoons Starch: Arrowroot, Potato  or Cornstarch

Sea salt to taste

Season meat with pepper, oregano, thyme and garlic powder then dust with flour.

Heat oil in large heavy bottomed stewing pot. Sauté meat until browned.

Add garlic, onions, carrots, bay leaf, wine, worcestershire and broth. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours or until meat is tender.

Add potatoes and cook another 30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.

Mix starch with an equal amount of water. Stir into stew until mixture has thickened.

Adjust Salt and Pepper.

Enjoy!

Venison Burgers 

I was surprised at the lack of recipes online for Venison Burgers, what I did notice though is most had some sort of fat added to them as Deer meat, similar to Bison which I work with more often, is very lean.  With Bison Burgers I add oil, here I used bacon and was quite happy with the results, now of course if pork isn’t your thing, and honestly it rarely is mine, you can omit the bacon and simply add a healthy high oil of your choice.  A high heat oil would be best but I think olive oil would be okay if you are planning to make a more rare burger. Also if you omit the bacon you should ass some sea salt.

1-2          pounds Deer Meat
1              teaspoon fresh Parsley, chopped
1              teaspoon fresh Thyme, chopped
1/4         teaspoon Smoked Paprika
6              slices of Bacon
2              Shallots, diced
2              cloves of Garlic
1              tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
1              tablespoon Dijon Mustard
1              Egg
1/4         cup Panko Bread Crumbs or Gluten-Free Bread Crumbs *optional

In a bowl, combine ground Deer with fresh ground pepper and chopped spices and set aside.

Pan fry bacon, once cooked to crisp, remove from the pan and set aside.  Now cook onions garlic in the bacon fat till just soft.  Remove from heat to cool.

Combine deer, worcestershire, mustard, and onions, garlic with the bacon fat and mix well with your hands.  Now add the egg and the bread crumbs if you are using them.  Cover bowl and refrigerate for about an hour.  Once chilled, form 4-6 patties and then grill!  Can be frozen for later use.   Cook from frozen.

Chia Buckwheat Seed Flat Bread

Hello!

Well I’ve just been too busy to create or post any recipes,  I moved from an apartment into a house with a huge yard and besides that being a ton of work in itself I planted a huge vegetable garden, very exciting and having my own organic fresh veg, fruit and herbs to work with is awesome. I am off today to my family cabin for most of August so I was up late last night blending my green smoothies for freezing and making breads and crackers.  The recipe below is one I created from gluten-free bread and cracker recipes, it’s kind of a cross between a cracker and a bread. Very filling and nutritious, loaded with protein, healthy fats and fibre.  I used my fresh herbs but you can use dried if that’s what you’ve got and feel free to experiment with different herbs or flavours.   You can top these gems with most anything, I love them plain or avocado spread on top. Hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

Chia-flatbread-2Chia Buckwheat Seed Flat Bread

 

Oven 350 degrees
Coconut Oiled Baking Sheet
Food Processor

1        cup Gluten-free Oats
1/2  cup Raw Buckwheat Groats
1       cup Chia Seeds
1       cup Pumpkin Seeds
1       cup Sunflower Seeds
1/2  cup Hemp Seeds
2       teaspoon Coconut Sugar
2       teaspoons Oregano, chopped
1       teaspoon Thyme, chopped
1       teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2  teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2   teaspoon Onion Powder
2       cups Water

Grind your oats and buckwheat in a high powered blender or food processor until you get a flour.  Move to a large bowl, add remaining ingredients and  mix well.

Transfer to a coconut oil greased baking sheet and use a spatula to spread and flatten.  Sprinkle with some more sea salt and bake for approximately 25 minutes or till firm to the touch.

All to cool for a 5-10 minutes then cut and transfer to cooling rack.

Store in the fridge for a few days or freeze.

Home-Made Protein Bars

 

860717_10151248562646780_840883433_oThis weekend I went snowshoeing with my boyfriend and decided to make him some protein bars for the trip. I used my tried and tested granola bar recipe and worked on a new creation raw bar from researching other recipes I found online. I love the home made granola bar, it is such a flexible recipe, you can really change the flavour every time you make them and they are really nice a crunchy. You can add your favourite protein powder and a little extra coconut oil or leave them the way they are. They are much healthier than store bought ones and really easy to make.
The raw/uncooked protein bar is nice and easy to make too and tastes surprisingly good! Perfect post workout or as a meal replacement to go.


granola barsCrunchy Granola Bars

Oven 325 degrees
9×9 pan lined with parchment paper
You can shift around these ingredients depending on what you have or prefer. Add 1/4 cup of protein powder with an extra tablespoon of oil for a protein granola bar.

Medium pot:
1/4      cup Nut Butter of your choice: Almond, Cashew, Sunflower, Peanut ect.
1           tablespoon Coconut Oil
3           tablespoon Honey or Maple Syrup
3 1/2   tablespoon Brown Rice Syrup or Molasses
1            tablespoon Vanilla
1            tablespoon Coconut Sugar

Mix in a bowl 3 cups total of:
1 1/2    cups Puffed Rice/Kamut/Quinoa
1/2       cup Kamut or Rye Flakes
1 1/2    cups Rolled Oats
1/3       cup dried juice sweetened Cranberries or other dried fruit like goji berries, blueberries, cherries, pineapple, apricots or raisins
1/4       cup raw Pumpkin Seeds
1/3       cup raw or toasted Sunflower Seeds
1            teaspoon Cinnamon *optional

Warm nut butter, honey, brown rice syrup, vanilla, and coconut sugar until sugar has melted.

Mix dry ingredients in a medium bowl.

Pour warm onto op the dry and mix well.

Once well coated, spread the mixture into your pan. Press down with a spatula or oiled hands then bake for about 25 minutes.

Allow to cool completely before removing to cut. Bars will crisp up over a few hours.
Note: Mix up your ingredients! Add coconut ribbons or chopped up banana chips for different flavours.

Raw Protein Bars

1/2      cup Chopped Pistachios
1/2      cup Pumpkin Seeds
1/2      cup Coconut Flour
1/4      cup Vanilla Protein Powder
2           tablespoon Hemp Seeds
2           tablespoon Chia Seeds
1/3      cup Goji Berries
1/3      cup Coconut Flakes
1           Vanilla Bean or 1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/3      cup Almond or Hemp Milk
1/3      cup Coconut Oil
1/4      cup Honey
2          teaspoon Cinnamon
Pinch of Sea Salt

Mix all ingredients together and press into a square pan. Chill in refrigerator for approximately 1 hour. Slice into desired sized bar.

Store in the refrigerator or freezer until the day you plan to eat one.

Oven Dried Salmon Jerky

Cleaning out my freezer making room for soups and stews last night I found the last of my Summer Cabin Time salmon, so I whip up a marinade and dried it in the oven. This method is actually quite simple and you get a very tasty, preservative free jerky! The recipe below is my tried and tested marinade but feel free to adjust or improvise on it, if you don’t like any sweetness you can take out the maple, if you like spice and pepper add more or add some fresh cracked pepper to the flesh of the salmon before drying, if you don’t have smoked paprika you could use liquid smoke to keep the smokey flavour. You could use soy sauce in place of Braggs too. 6-8 hours of oven drying time should do it, but watch for desired doneness. I like my jerky less done so 6 hours at my ovens lowest temp with the door cracked open ever so slightly is just right for me. This is one of those recipes you’ll HAVE to try along the way – Oh darn. 😉

2    full Salmon Filets, approximately 3 lbs, cut into 1 inch strips (I use sockeye so this was maybe a 9lb fish)
Medium bowl
2/3     cup Braggs Liquid Amino
2/3     cup Worcestershire Sauce
2/3     cup Agave, Maple or Brown Sugar
2    teaspoons Smoked Paprika
2    teaspoons Tabasco
2    tablespoon Toasted Sesame Oil
1    teaspoon Garlic Powder
2    teaspoons Crushed Red Pepper
1    teaspoon Onion Powder
1    teaspoon fresh Ground Pepper

Whisk all ingredients in a bowl. Arrange Salmon strips in a shallow glass dish or place in a ziplock bag and pour in marinade sauce. Allow to marinade for 6-8 hours, turning or shaking every so often.

Drain marinade and shake off excess drippings.

Line the bottom rack of your oven with foil to catch drippings and turn onto the lowest setting, usually ovens set as low at 170 degrees, if 160 degrees is available go with that or if you’ve got a fancy oven with a dehydrating setting definitely use it! My oven only goes to 170 but I crack the door, just a little bit with a small metal spatula to allow the moist air to escape similar to a dehydrator.

Arrange salmon strips skin side down, spaced out on a rack place mid oven.

Bake for approximately 6-8 hours or until desired dryness.

Salmon jerky will last a couple months in the fridge or freeze it for longer term.

Eat it as is, take it hiking, serve with goat cheese or cream cheese, capers and crackers…endless delicious possibilities.

Enjoy!

Kale and Quinoa Salad with Apple Lime Dressing

This salad is a combination of so many of my favourite foods right now: kale, quinoa, carrots, fresh in-season fuji apple and lime….so delicious and, it is perfect served immediately or can be stored in the fridge for a day or two; it also makes a great potluck or party dish. I always make it with Lacinato or Dinosaur Kale but it would work with curly kale or any other variety too. I suppose you could use a different variety of apple as well but the Fuji apple has a nice balanced sweet and tart with a hint of floral flavour and, bonus, they are local and in season (here) right now. This recipe serves 4.

Apple Lime Dressing
1/2    large Fuji Apple, chopped
1         Lime, zested
1         Lime, juiced
1         teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2    cup Rice Vinegar
2         teaspoons Sesame Oil
1/4    cup Sunflower Oil
2         tablespoons Honey or Agave Syrup

Toss all ingredients in a food processor or blender and set aside.

Kale Quinoa Salad
1        large bunch Lacinato Kale, stems removed, coarsely chopped into about 1 inch strips then hand torn*
3/4   cup Quinoa, rinsed well then cooked in one cup fresh water
2-3    large Carrots, shredded
1/2    large Fuji Apple, chopped
1/2    cup raw or toasted Almonds

Hand tear the chopped kale into a large bowl. *Hand tearing bruises the raw kale making it softer and ready to eat without cooking, if you are planning on storing the salad in the fridge to serve later you could skip the hand tearing as marinating in the dressing will also soften the kale.

Add warm cooked quinoa, shredded carrot and the vinaigrette, toss until coated.

Add chopped apple and almonds, toss to combine again and add fresh ground pepper to taste.

Enjoy!

Mackerel with Asian-inspired Dressing

First day out fishing at the family cabin we went out for the afternoon bite just to get the hooks wet and see what’s going on just outside the inlet, we were hoping for salmon but all we caught was mackerel.  Mackerel after mackerel and some more mackerel, at one point we pulled the lines just to check them and we had 4 mackerels, so I decided, no way, we are keeping them and I am going to make them good.

My quick online research told me that Mackerel is part of the same family as tuna and actually quite good for you, it is high in fat but unsaturated fat and a filet still has fewer calories than beef and some other meats. It’s loaded with the omega fatty acids EPA, DHA and ALA, all of which are good for brain growth and heart protection.

The people around here’s first recommendation was to batter the heck out of this fish but I decided to treat it like tuna and add a little Asian flare to it.  Being a fatty fish a fast fry without oil in a cast iron skillet worked well.  Here at the cabin I threw the iron pan on the BBQ on high, sea salted, peppered and lemon zested the flesh and cooked it skin side down.   The recipe below is for the sauce I made to top it with but honestly it was totally tasty just off the BBQ!

When cooking the fish you should press it down several times to really char the skin and keep it flat, when it’s just about done you’ll see almost all the purple/pink flesh gone, flip for a few moments to just heat the flesh but do not press here.   Serve with sauce over basmati rice with something like salad or asparagus….seriously delicious. Tried and tested on skeptic fishermen!

Sauce

1              clove of Garlic, peeled and chopped fine

1              thumb sized piece fresh Ginger, fine grated

3             Shallots, trimmed and fine grated

1              tablespoon Red Chilli Peppers

2             Limes, zested and juiced

1              small bunch of fresh Cilantro, roughly chopped

2              tablespoons Sesame Oil

4              tablespoons Wheat-Free Soy Sauce

2              teaspoons Honey or Agave

Splash of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Combine all prepared ingredients except oil, whisk then add a good splash of olive oil and whisk again,  set aside until fish is cooked then simply spoon on top!