3

Well it's not like I made chili and then turned it into meatloaf... that's just bizarre... but the day was peculiar and I don't know where my mind was.  I'm just calling it "Mommy Brain" and we'll leave it at that, okay? 😉

So I get up one morning and actually REMEMBER to get 2 lbs. of ground meat out of the freezer as it's Tuesday....  or well, kind of did that....

Moving onto a half  hour later, I sit at my desk and think, well- more like panic - "Oh no!  I forgot to buy mushrooms for the meatloaf!" and I go into quick action... what to do? what to do?  We live a half hour away from the grocery store.  I am NOT spending an hour in the

Meanwhile...

car just for mushrooms.  So I go to the internet... put in a search 'substitute for mushrooms'...hmmm....   well.... zucchini or carrots seems to be the consensus.  My son hates zucchini and I don't have any anyhow. I have carrots.  Hmmmm...  Now I'm thinking to myself..."My husband and my son LOVE my meatloaf recipe...do I dare make it with a substitute?'" Think some more.  "No. I really don't dare. Now what?"  So I drag out the Paleo cookbooks.  Aha!  I found a recipe for mini meatloaves that my husband actually requested I try several months ago and what do you know...it calls for carrots!  But it also calls for only a pound of ground beef and a pound of ground pork rather than the 2 lbs. of ground beef I got out an hour or so ago.  I do have a pound of ground  pork in the refrigerator.  I go to make sure the ground beef hasn't thawed too much....   not only has it not thawed too much, turns out one of those 'pounds' was actually minute steak.  Ugh.  Okay... so I put the minute steak back and gather the materials for the rest of the mini meatloaf recipe that I found in Sarah Fragoso's Everyday Paleo Family Cookbook.

Mini Meatloaves

  • Servings: 5-6
  • Time: 30 minutes prep time and 20 minutes cook time
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1 cup finely diced carrots (I used the shred blade on my food processor)
  • 1 cup finely diced spinach leaves (I used baby spinach)
  • coconut oil or ghee
  • ketchup or homemade sauce

Directions:  Grease a muffin pan with coconut oil or ghee.  Mix together the ground beef and pork, seasonings, carrots and spinach.  Place approximately 1/3 cup of mixture into each space of the muffin pan.  You may spread a bit of ketchup or homemade sauce on top of each mini meatloaf.  Bake in a pre-heated 350° oven for approximately 20 minutes (you may need extra time if you are using a stone pan).

My husband and son really like this sauce so I used it on top in place of homemade ketchup as called for in the original recipe from Sarah's book:

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 - 1 tbsp.. Worcestershire sauce -  sometimes I use coconut aminos as a substitute to avoid soy.
  • 1 tbsp. honey

So after mixing all of this up and putting the pan in the refrigerator for baking later,  THEN I close the refrigerator door where my monthly menu plan is posted to check and make sure I remembered the side dishes correctly... ahem...  yeah, well.  It wasn't meatloaf day.  It was supposed to be Paleo Chili.

 

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So embarrassed....  all of this plus allowed the sink to overflow on the same day....where was my head?  Ah.....but dinner was good!

 

 

3

I am/was behind in menu planning this month.  I am sitting here coming to the realization the month has already started and I haven't planned the menu!  I've enjoyed the last two months as I prepared the following month's menu at least a week before the month started.  It has really made life easier to plan in advance like that rather than waiting until the evening before I do my weekly grocery store trip to plan the menu and the list.  It takes a little longer to plan for the month but not as long as it used to do the weekly plan since I made up a bit of a draft to always follow.

First I print out a Monthly Menu Planner....  I had one saved to my computer but couldn't find the link.  Here's another that I like:

weekly menu planner pict 300x231 Meal Planning Resources

So now I take a look at the menu and fill in the dates....  Then I look at my regular planning calendar and mark off any days we might not be home for dinner due to previous plans or make note of days we will be out of town for dinner and may need to plan on food to take with us!  Then I mark of Wednesdays and Fridays.  These are days we follow the fasting rules of the Orthodox Church.  The rule permits fish without backbones on these days but does not allow any other animal meat.  We are a little more lenient in our home and allow any type of fish, but try to stick to the backbone rule on at least one of these days.  So Wednesday and Fridays are automatically seafood days and I try, if we have it on hand, to do wild caught salmon once a week.  I am out right now and need to get myself to our best source soon! 

Next is my list of our current favorite Paleo meals:

  • Bacon Spinach Casserole
  • Paleo Chili
  • Mushroom Meatloaf
  • Chicken With Mushroom Sauce
  • Spaghetti Squash with Homemade sauce

And a couple "ALMOST" Paleo Meals:

  • Turkey Reuben Salad
  • General Tso's  Chicken served over cauliflower rice

And, usually - because my family LOVES them and my husband and son volunteer every month to help our church make them...AND because we don't, at this time, want to be 100% Paleo.....  one NOT paleo meal...but used more as a side dish now beside a very large salad...

  • Perogies.   Yep---- wheat AND white potatoes in the same meal...I'm sure the paleo police will come after us for sure but so far we do fine with this ... and I personally think making them a side dish now instead of a main meal is just a nice guilty pleasure that is at still better than what we used to do!  🙂

So with the seafood meals, which I also have a list of convenient easy meal combinations pre-made, that automatically gives me 16 meals already planned!  Throw in about 6 Hot Plates (Stir Frys) that are super easy and Thursday Leftover Days  and that leaves me with only about 4 meals to plan!  These will be my experimental days to try new Paleo Recipes!

Recipe Bonus:

I decided to add this here as some of you may be wondering just what Turkey Reuben Salad is...  It may sound a bit strange... making a reuben into a salad rather than a sandwich but my husband suggested it and I figured if he was willing to give up the sandwiches, I should be supportive and attempt the salad.  Even my 15-year-old likes it 🙂

Turkey Reuben Salad

3/4  -  1 lb. organic deli turkey, thinly sliced

1 jar sauerkraut (raw sauerkraut is the healthiest choice)

1/4 - 1/2 red onion, sliced or diced

organic cherry tomatoes - 1 container

1/4 lb. swiss cheese - cubed or you may use sliced cheese and cut it into nice long strips

Homemade Thousand Island Dressing

Organic Baby Spinach - Extra Large Package...about 12 oz.  [or green of your choice]

I make this salad up "buffet style".  My husband and I like the spinach but my son prefers a nice romaine lettuce and opts to leave the onions off.   I also like to mix baby romaine or baby lettuces with mine.  Try it and let me know what you think!  Meanwhile, I need to fill out that menu planner!!

4

I know that name sounds really weird... but it didn't taste like a bowl of chocolate. It tasted like chili--- epic chili according to my teenage son. So I thought I'd share. The recipe was out of Well Fed, my favorite Paleo cookbook so far. I only have two, of course, other than the ones I downloaded onto my kindle which were free. But I rarely use my kindle. Really, anymore I just put the free stuff on it which I may or may not ever get around to looking at.

So here's the recipe:

2 Tblsp. Coconut oil
2 onions
4 cloves garlic (minced)
2 lbs. ground beef
1 tsp. oregeno
2 tblsp. chili powder
2 tblsp. ground cumin
1 1/2 tblsp. unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp. allspice
1 tsp. salt
1 can (6 oz) tomato paste
1 can (14.5) oz. fire roasted tomatoes (I actually used 2 cans)
1 can (14.5) oz beef broth (I used homemade - not sure what beef broth that's not homemade would be considered paleo??)
1 cup water

Fry onions in oil till transluscent, about 7 minutes. Add garlic, stir 30 seconds then add meat, crumbling and mixing to combine. Cook meat until no longer pink.

In seperate bowl, crush oregeno with palms to release flavor. Add chili powder, cumin, cocoa, allspice, and salt. Combine together and then add to pot, stirring well. Add tomato paste and stir till well combined.

Add tomatoes with juice, broth and water. Stir well. Bring to boil then reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for at least 2 hours! Simmering allows the flavors to blend and release.

Next time I am definitely making at least a double if not triple batch so I can freeze it.

This recipe was taken from WELL FED by Melissa Joulwan. She has just come out with a WELL FED 2 which I am putting on my Christmas list!

Now, if only I could figure out how to put a link on here for her.... as the rest of the cookbook is just as devine and anyone who wants to try out Paleo recipes really should get it! 🙂