Seared Pork Cabbage Salad with Wild Orange Essential Oil

Hey everybody!!  I hope this finds you all  happy, healthy, and whole!
Things are a little crazy around the Rodgers home, which means it has been a fight for health. Those busy days, when you’ve worked ungodly amounts in one day, and the blankets and Netflix are calling your name…  Those are our weakness around here, and there have been a lot of them lately!! So if you think of us, send some prayers our way…because we want to feel good!! And feeling good starts with good food!
Speaking of good food…I have returned to the archives. And look what I found!! I so wish I was better at pictures because these really don’t do it justice…but this salad was FABULOUS!  

  
Aweeee yeah baby. This salad had it all…satisfying, flavorful protein…crunchy veggies, and a creamy comfort from everyone’s favorite green thing…avocados! And the icing on the cake…(I feel like I should not be using that phrase…the dressing on the salad?  Let’s start using that one instead, health nerds!!)…cabbage is cheap, pork is cheap…this meal is cheap!!  Hallelujah healthy for your body and your budget!! So, you ready to find out how to make it for yourself?!

Note: the original calls for orange juice.  Mr. Rodgers doesn’t do orange juice, too much sugar!  So I substituted Wild Orange Essential Oil blended with Olive Oil. The flavor was fantastic, and it is much better for you!!  My preferred brand is DoTerra. :). If you have questions on oils, leave me a comment and I can hook you up with my mom, she is an oil genius 😉
Here’s what you need:

  • 1 lb Boneless Pork Loin
  • 3 Tbsp Cumin
  • 2 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • Salt and Pepper (about 1 Tbsp of each)
  • Pinch of Cinnamon (I added this for Mr. Rodgers, he LOVES it on meat)
  • 3-4 Tbsp preferred cooking oil, recipe calls for olive oil but I don’t like heating it, I believe I used Coconut Oil
  • 1 Two Pound head Green Cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 C Lime Juice (4ish limes)
  • 1 Chile Pepper (I usually use Serrano) 
  • 1 Red Onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 Ripe Avocadoes, peeled, pitted and chopped
  • 3-4 Drops Wild Orange Essential Oil 
  • 1/4 C Olive Oil
  • 1/4 C Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Cilanro Paste
  • Sale and Pepper
  • Optional: Toasted seeds of some kind, ie pumpkin seeds

And here’s how you do it!

  1. Combine cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Rub it alllllll over that pork. 
  2. Heat your oil over medium high heat. Add the meat and cook 3-4 minutes per side so you have a nice sear, making sure it is done but not super done. 
  3. Remove from heat and let sit while you assemble your salad. 
  4. Whisk the orange oil into the olive oil so that it is combined and the flavor is infused. Feel free to taste and adjust depending on how strong you want the orange flavor. 
  5. Combine everything but the meat in a large bowl (including your orange oil mixture).  
  6. Slice your pork into thin slices and lay across the top of the salad. You are ready to enjoy!!

Peectures:

  
Seasoned and ready to sear!

  
Yum!! A little spice, a little texture!

  
All the salad ingredients in a bowl…

  
Tossed and coated…

  
Sliced…

  
Topped…

  
And ready to go!! Hope you enjoy guys!!

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Creamy Beef Stroganoff with Mashed Cauliflower

Oh man. So as many of you know, I have been digging into my  emails, and finding pictures of some amazing meals from my past!  I was SO excited to see this one, it was SO good!  I was even more excited when I realized that I remembered where the recipe was from!! So I made the effort to get up off the couch where I was watching The Office and go all the way to the kitchen to find the cook book. And. It. Was. Gone. It is lost. I’m so sad 😦  However, on a happy note I took very thorough pictures of the process for this recipe, so together we can figure out how I made this super tasty, super comforting, and super clean Beef Stroganoff.  That is what the Archive Series is all about!

We are going to be wild and crazy today and do things out of order today. Let’s start with the pictures this time.

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So here is the basics of what we need!  Mushrooms, sliced. Onions and garlic, minced. And my favorite part. Steak, thinly sliced, salted and peppered.

Now at some point you will need to make mashed cauliflower, not only to have for the perfect side, but you will also need it for the sauce. You can find a recipe in my blog archives!  But a quick description is this: cut a head of cauliflower into florets, boil them for about 15 minutes. Drain, add lots of grassfed butter, salt, pepper, and a clove of garlic or two. Blend in a food processor or with an immersion blemder until smooth.

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Take your cast iron skillet. They’re my favorite. Melt butter in the pan, and brown your beef.

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Set aside the beef. In the same pan, melt more butter. Add the onion and stir, cooking till caramelized. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds or so.

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Add the mushrooms and cook until tender.

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Add your steak back in. Use a little wine or broth to deglaze the pan.

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Add a couple large spoonfuls of mashed cauliflower, and a squeeze of dijon mustard. Stir into the whole pan to evenly distribute and create a creamy delicious sauce.

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See? Lookie there!  Yummy!

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This is making me hungryyyyyy.

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What do you guys think?!

Garlic Chickpea Soup

Welcome to post number two of the lost archives!  Today we have a lovely soup that works for any season.  In the fall or winter it could work for an entree, but in the summer it works for a nice side dish.  I always forget that soups make incredible sides!  A nice change up from salads and roasted veggies. 

You may remember me mentioning one of my favorite cook books titled “100 Best Fresh Soups.” Well this little beauty found its origins there! I love the fact that it has a hint of creaminess, but also that satisfying nature of chickpeas that you can sink your teeth into. Again, another grest reason it works for many seasons and occasions. You ready to jump on in?! Let’s do this!

So, here’s what you need:

• 1/2 C Grassfed Butter, or Coconut Oil (butter will taste better)
• 12 Cloves Garlic, minced
• 2 C Dry Chickpeas
• 10 1/2 C Water
• 1 tsp Cumin
• 1 tsp Coriander
• 2 Carrots, Very Finely Chopped
• 2 Onions, Very Finely Chopped
• Juice of 1 Lemon
• Fresh Cilantro, Chopped for Garnish

Note: you’ll want to read through the first few steps before you start because this soup does require a little planning ahead!

Here’s how you do it:

1) The night before you want to make your soup, put your dry chickpeas in a container covered with water so they can soak over night. You’ll want quite a few inches of water over the chickpeas, as they grow like craaaaaazy!

2) Heat half the butter over low heat in a large pot. Add the garlic and cook, stirring for about 2 minutes. Add your chickpeas with the water, cumin, and coriander. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until chickpeas are tender; about 2 1/2 hours.

3) Heat the rest of your butter or oil over medium-low heat. Add your carrots, onions, and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 20 minutes. If your chickpea mixture isn’t done boiling, then set it aside.

4) When everythimg is done simmering, stir the veggies into the chickpeas. Place about half of the soup in a blender, and blend until smooth. Return the blended mixture back into the pan and stir. Add half the lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Taste, and adjust! Garnish with some cilantro and enjoy.

Peectures:

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So. Much. Garlic. Yayyyy.

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See?! So much!

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Melt half the butter, add the garlic and cook about 2 minutes.
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Add the chickpeas, water, cumin, and coriander. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and boil for about 2 1/2 hours.
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Melt the rest of the butter, add the veggies, and simmer over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes.
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When both are done, stir the veggies into the chickpea mixture. Put half of it in a food proccessor and blend until smooth and creamy.
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Beautiful.
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Stir together with some lemon juice and salt and pepper. Taste and adjust.

Here is how we enjoyed it. I did it as a side dish to this yummy chicken. And we had a nice romantic candle lit dinner. Mr.Rodgers even put a youtube video of a crackling fire up on the computer. It was the best. Great ways to make the mundane special with your honey.
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Quinoa Brussles Bowl

Oh man. You know those nights where you have a hankerin’…but you just don’t know what for?!  Well I was having one of those. It was so intense in fact that I decided to dig through the fridge and cupboards and try desperately to throw something together to satiate the feeling. 

Well. Not to sound arrogant, but…NAILED IT!!  I made a big batch of this and ate it for days. Didn’t even share. Mr. Rodgers stays away from quinoa, so I had it all to myself.  No complaints here. This is my new favorite craving fixer!  It’s so tasty and satisfying. It made me so happy that I have to share my glee with you !  

So, here’s what you need:

  • 1 lb Brussels Sprouts, halved
  • 1 Can Chickpeas, drained
  • 1 C Dry Quinoa (I used red)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2-3 Tbsp Bacon Grease
  • Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, and Cayenne

And here’s how you do it!

  1. Preheat your oven to 350*!
  2. Place your sprouts and chickpeas in a bowl and drizzle with bacon grease. 
  3. Season generously with salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder. Add just a pinch of cayenne and toss it all together so that everything is coated with bacony goodness and all spices. 
  4. Dump onto a foil lined pan and slide into your oven. Roast 25-40 minutes, until brussel and chickpeas are browned and crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. 
  5. While waiting on your roasted ingredients, cook your quinoa according to package instructions (probably simmer in 2 C water for about 12 minutes).
  6. When water has evaporated and quinoa is done, create a crater in the middle of your pot. Scramble your eggs in a bowl then dump into the “crater.”  Cook, scraping, so that you get scrambled eggs. When eggs are done, mix it into the quinoa so you have little bits throughout. 
  7. As soon as your brussels and chickpeas are done, add quinoa mixture and stir to evenly combine. Adjust seasoning as needed, and eat warm. Sooo comforting I hope you love it as much as I did! 

Peectures!



Place your Brussels and chickpeas in a bowl. Toss with bacon grease and spices (careful with the cayenne!). I put just a pinch and it was perfect!



Sorry for the horrid blurry picture, but I knew this step might be confusing so I had to put it in there anyway. Cook your quinoa. When the liquid is gone, create a hole in the middle and pour your eggs into it. Cook, scraping often to get little bits of scrambled egg. DONT MIX IN QUINOA UNTIL THE EGGS ARE FULLY COOKED!



Pull out sprouts and chickpeas when they are deeply browned and crispy on the outside; tender on the inside. 

See how your quinoa mixture should look?



Dump quinoa mixture on top of roasted mixture and stir together. 



Season if needed. But mostly…just enjoy. Ah yeah. So happy. 

Monster Meat Pile

Okay, so…let’s just be honest here.   The hardest part about eating healthy?  At least for me?  Those days when you have so much to do, you have no time, you’re crazy hungry, and the drive through is RIGHT THERE.  Especially when you get home and it seems like there is nothing to eat!!  Well.  Here is one of our solutions.  Not saying that I am perfect and never cave.  To my shame I do that more often than Mr. Rodgers.  But this Protein Plate has saved me from stumbling so many times, because I have these items on hand at all times!!

Like a few of my other posts, this is a little less “recipe,” and a little more just me sharing an idea with you that has worked for me.  Obviously you can make your own version of this, as long as you keep a go-to for weak, hectic moments.

 

So here’s what I use:

  • Frozen Burger Patties
  • 2 Slices Bacon (Optional, I happened to have some the night I took these pics)
  • 1/2 Small onion
  • 1-2 Eggs

 

I think you can pretty much figure out the rest by checking out my pictures (sorry the lighting was bad, I was so hungry I didn’t have it in me to take the time to take really pretty pictures.  I am known for getting “hangry.”  You don’t want to mess with me when the hanger is upon me.

Basically, you just….

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Heat up a cast iron skillet and toss in a frozen burger patty or two.  Slice your onions into strips, rub a little butter on the bottom half of the skillet and sauté the onions while your burgers cook.  I season both sides of my burger patties with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and a little chipotle chili powder.

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Toss some bacon in the pan too if you are using that.

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A couple minutes before it is done, create an open space and crack an egg in there.

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When it is all done, assemble your monster meat pile.  You will not be lacking in the protein area after this!  I always find it so satisfying!

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Yay Yay Yay Yay!  What do you think of my idea?  And what do you do when you have no time but need some protein fast?

Pumpkin Chicken Chili

Hello everyone!!  Guess what guess what guess what?!  Mr. Rodgers and I…live in a new house!!  His mother has been living with us in our small 2 bedroom apartment for almost 3 years now!  But we finally found a place for super cheap, and it’s all ours!!  And guess what else?!?!?!  My kitchen is BEAUTIFUL!  Minus a little old lady wall paper and needing an updated stove…it is just gorgeous and I love it I love it I love it!!  I don’t have any pictures on me at the moment, but I can’t wait to share them with you!!

Anyways!!  Back to cooking…I just had to shout that from the rooftops first because I figured if anyone understood my “new kitchen glee,” it would be a bunch of food nerds like you!!

I’m pulling this from a little while back, because my life has been consumed with packing and unpacking and cleaning then starting the cycle over.   😉   Pumpkin Chicken Chili!  Yummm!  I’ve been noticing there are still lots of squash around in the stores…and you can get canned pumpkin pretty much any time!  So this recipe is pretty timeless!  This was so thick and warm and comforting!  And let’s just be honest, with the weather we have been having around here lately, we all need a little comfort.  I don’t know what it is like where you are, but we are in the glorious span of time when you check the weather on your phone and see the “feels like” section and think “Yaaaaay it feels like -22*.  Fuuuuuun.”  You know something is weird when you wake up one morning, see that it is 16* outside and think to yourself “oh wow that’s not bad!”  :I  I am a pretty positive person, so I will just keep fighting to have a good attitude about the cold.  It’s hard.  But recipes like this help.  Because they warm the insides, excite the taste buds, and make you forget your issues at least until you step outside your house again, hahah!

Ever so slightly adapted from the wonderful Caveman Feast, aka Abel James.

So here’s what you need:

  • 3 lb Chicken Breast, Cubed
  • 2 C Red Onion, Diced
  • 2 C Bell Peppers, I used red and yellow, Diced
  • 3 Jalapeños, Diced Small
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 C Chicken Stock (or more if you like it thinner)
  • 1 C White Wine
  • Lg Can Diced Tomatoes with Juice (28 oz)
  • 6 oz Tomato Paste
  • 3 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 1 tsp Ground Coriander
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Cinnamon Stick
  • 3 C Organic Pumpkin Puree
  • 1 Tbsp Cocoa Powder (Optional…I am trying to remember if I used it…I don’t think I did…but I’m sure it’s tasty!)
  • Coconut Oil or Grass Fed Butter for Cooking

And here’s how you do it:

  1. Prep all your veggies and cut your chicken!
  2. Cook your chicken and set aside.
  3. Heat your coconut oil or butter in a large soup pot.  Salute your onions until translucent.  Add bell pepper, jalapeño, and garlic and cook for another 5 minutes.
  4. Add in chicken and stir together.
  5. Add stock, wine, tomatoes, tomato paste, and all spices (excluding cocoa) and simmer for 20 minutes.
  6. Stir in pumpkin and cocoa powder and cook for about 5 more minutes, until everything is heated through.  Enjoy!

Peectures!!

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For ease while cooking, gather all your ingredients and prep your veggies first 🙂

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Cut your chicken breasts into bite size pieces

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Brown on al sides with grass fed butter or coconut oil.  Should mostly be cooked through.

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Melt coconut oil or butter in a large soup pot and saute your onions until translucent. Photo-5

Add bell peppers, jalapeños, and garlic…

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Stir together and cook an additional 5 minutes!

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Toss in your chicken and stir it all up…

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Add stock, wine, tomatoes, paste, and spices and simmer for about 20 minutes…

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Add pumpkin and cocoa if you are using it.

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Stir together, heat through, and wabam!  You have a beautiful, hearty, flavorful, unique, thick and comforting meal for yourself and the fam…or if its just yourself, you have food for a week!! 😀

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Isn’t it purty?!  I wish I had some right now.  I haven’t eaten today other than a really naughty treat I snuck…

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This would have been much more satisfying that a hot dog :/

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Hallelujah!!  I hope you love it!  What is your favorite dish with pumpkin?