Wednesday, May 30, 2012

paleo!

Something I've failed to mention in the blog this year is the change in Chris' and my diets. Last December, Chris decided his body could not handle multiple Big Macs per week anymore. The late night pizza rolls were catching up to him, and he needed to change things. Thus, in typical Chris fashion- he chose an extreme method to change his ways, The Paleo Diet Lifestyle.

Paleo, short for Paleolithic, refers to that period in history - Caveman times. The nutrition plan is based on what people think Cavemen ate; lots of meats, wild vegetables, but no refined sugars or complex carbs. I don't want to get into the politics of the diet, because I did not choose it, nor am I following it, but I do want to discuss how it's changed our meals at home (something I should have done months ago).

On January 1, 2012 Chris began a change in lifestyle. And, being the supportive roommate that I am, I helped him out by only cooking Paleo meals at home, and rarely buying things that he couldn't eat. With the help of the Paleo Solution's 30 Day Meal Plan, we quickly found a few recipes that were quite tasty and easy to prepare. I should have shared them ages ago, but, better late than never, right?

Turkey Curry - We eat this a lot and it allows for lots of variations depending on whatever veggies are on sale.
1 lb ground turkey (we use 94/6, since it's cheapest at Sams' but I'd actually prefer leaner. You could also use ground beef, pork, or chicken)
1/2 onion, diced
8oz sliced mushrooms
1/2 can coconut milk (full fat is better tasting, but I've used both)
Handful of cashews (raw, unsalted)
1 Serrano pepper, diced with as many seeds as you can tolerate (depending on how spicy you like it)
LOTS of baby spinach, chopped
curry powder, or curry paste (or a medley of the two)
red pepper flakes
paprika
salt and pepper
Basmati rice - optional
Broccoli - optional
zucchini or yellow squash - optional

Note: If you're making this with rice, you should get that going first. I suck at making rice, so hopefully you can figure that out on your own. If your rice skills are as bad as mine and you still need a little carb fix, I've also made this with whole wheat pasta, but pita bread or naan would be really delicious too. mmmmmm naan!

1. In the biggest skillet you have, or a wok, turn the heat to med. high. Cook the turkey until almost browned, but it's okay if some pink remains. Typically I season the meet with salt, pepper, curry powder (just a bit), paprika, and some red pepper flakes.
2. Without draining the grease, add the onion, mushrooms, and any other veggies (not the Serrano). Add a few more seasonings and saute it up for a couple of minutes until the turkey is browned and the veggies are cooked to perfection.
3. Meanwhile, pour half the can of coconut milk into a larger container (a 2 cup measuring cup works well). Add about 2 tbsp curry powder, a bit of paprika, and some more pepper. Stir it up so the coconut milk turns red/green/yellow (depending on your curry-color of choice). Then pour it into your saute pan.
4. Stir it up, add the Serrano and the cashews.
5. Add the spinach in handfuls, stirring frequently so the spinach wilts. You can use as much spinach as you want, depending on how soupy you want the curry. Because we don't always eat this with rice, we tend to use a lot of spinach.

Taste it. It might need more salt. Add some! If it's not spicy enough you can top it with Rooster Sauce. Chris loves doing that, but technically it might not be Paleo-approved.

PS: Next time I make this I'll try to remember to take pictures so I can add them in.

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