A pot of stew, softly bubbling on the back of the stove, is like a magic potion that guarantees you're going to have a...Read More
Five Paleo Dinners To Cook Next Week #52
I’m a very “everything in its place” kind of girl, and this is my house right now:
The bedroom, living room, and kitchen are still tidy and functioning, but I have to avert my eyes from almost every other space. It’s challenging my daily peace.
My cooking life has been reduced to big hunks of meat plopped in the slow cooker, extra-large trays of chicken pieces roasted in the oven, Silky Gingered Zucchini Soup made with bone broth, and salads with a variety of dressings so we’re not too bored. (Basically, when life gets crazy, I rely on this Panic Cooking approach.)
My days begin with yoga and end with reading. In between, I’m slowly filling boxes bound for various destinations (Pennsylvania, Prague, donations) and sorting former treasures for Friends-Giving (this Sunday) and a house sale (date TBD).
During, around, and through all of that, there are many, many feels which can best be summed up by this quote:
“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”—A.A. Milne
Prague has been insistently whispering my name for years, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to leave friends, family, and all that’s familiar. But then I remember this…
“I knew when I met you an adventure was going to happen.” ― A.A. Milne
… which pretty much describes how I felt when I met Dave—and just about every day in the twenty-five years since.
All of which leads to this completely unoriginal thought: Transitions are hard.
For me, transitions are more manageable when I remember to breathe, laugh, and eat good food. You’re probably not also moving to Prague soon (although, that would be cool), but it seems like everyone is going through some kind of transition at any given moment: a change of seasons or job or family or even a shift in attitude.
So here are some meal ideas to nurture you through whatever your transition might be. These recipes are easy to cook and they’re comforting, but flavorful enough to feed a sense of adventure. Loving advice: Make a double batch of Mulligatawny Stew. It freezes very well, and it’s so good. (And since it’s March, now could be a fun time to revisit March Meatball Madness!)
Dinner Ideas (Whole30 compliant)
Cookup Tips: This tastes even better after a few days in the fridge, so you can make it up to 5 days in advance. It also freezes very well, so think about a double batch. It tastes really great on a bed of Cauliflower Rice; you can turn the head of cauli into rice in advance, then store it in the fridge until you’re ready to cook it.
Cookup Tips: The downside of Breakfast for Dinner (shall we just call it “brinner”?!) is also part of its appeal: You can’t really make eggs in advance, but this dish is ready in a flash! This is super delicious and comforting as all get-out.
Recommended Sides: This tastes really great with Classic Diner-Style Home Fries, Crispy (green) Plantains, and Pan-Fried (yellow) Plantains. You can boil the potatoes and plantains in advance, so when you’re ready to eat, all you need to do is fry ’em up.
Cookup Tips: I feel like I shouldn’t be biased, but these are my go-to meatballs when I want to eat something delicious and interesting, but don’t feel like figuring anything out. Meat “dough” can be made 1 day in advance then cooked—or you can cook the meatballs during your Cookup and re-heat just before eating. They’ll stay fresh and tasty for 5-6 days after cooking. They also freeze like champs!
Recommended Sides: Cauliflower Rice is always a good choice—or you might sauté snow peas in ghee and sprinkle with sesame seeds and salt. A salad of butter lettuce, radishes, and cucumbers with Zingy Ginger Dressing is tasty, too.
Cookup Tips: Make the dressing, poach the chicken, and chop the vegetables in advance, then when it’s time to eat, just toss it together and dig in.
Recommended Sides: The gift of a salad like this is that it features protein, veggies, and fat, so you don’t need to add a thing. But if you want to, Crispy Sweet Potato Fries are a yummy choice.
Cookup Tips: This is another recipe that should be made just before you eat it, but the good news: it’s super easy and cooks quite quickly.
Recommended Sides: This Creamy-Spicy Kale has complementary Moroccan flavors, and Balsamic Grilled Butternut Squash is both delicious and in season. No grill? You can make both the salmon and butternut squash in a 450F oven instead.
Condiment (Whole30 compliant)
Cookup Tips: You can make this during your Cookup in under 10 minutes, and it stays fresh in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks. The recipe lists lots of creative ideas for how to put this dressing to good use. (It’s my favorite recipe from Well Fed 2).
Cookup Tips: This can bake in the background while you’re prepping the rest of your Cookup, and you can keep it whole, as pictured, or crush it in a food processor to make “Magic Dust.” I like to sprinkle a little of this on salads to add crunch—or on top of soups like this Sweet Potato or Golden Cauliflower.