One of my favorite places to go to lunch is a Vietnamese restaurant called Pho Long on Olive. Their mein ga is a delicious chicken soup with rice noodles served up with a plate of bean sprouts, thai basil, cilantro, limes and jalapenos. The broth is rich and savory and I've tried to recreate that flavor at home. I make mine without noodles, which just makes more room for all the other goodies I put in the bowl. Part of the trick is simmering the chicken on low for
a few hours which adds richness to the broth. You will love this soup!
1 Whole Chicken (preferably free range or organic)
10 cloves of garlic, smashed
2 large yellow onions
salt and pepper
1 bunch green onions
2-3 cups bamboo shoots
1 bunch thai basil
1 bunch cilantro
1 lime cut up
Place chicken in a large stock pot and add about 4 quarts water. Peel garlic. Set garlic piece on cutting board and place broad side of knife over it. Place your palm on the flat side of the blade and press down on garlic, smashing it. Throw smashed piece into the pot with the chicken and water. Continue with all the garlic pieces. Smashing it releases the flavor. Slice an onion into quarters and add to pot along with 2-3 t. salt. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer on very low for about 2-3 hours. Simmering on low helps keep the broth clear. When cooked, strain the broth into another container. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, pick the meat from the bones. Return all broth and meat back into stockpot. Slice another onion into thin rounds and add to pot. Slice up green onions into small rounds halfway up to the green part. Add to soup pot. Taste broth and season with more salt and pepper. Simmer on low until onions are soft and clear.
I was craving Thai lettuce wraps and was looking for a good paleo style recipe. I found a recipe from "Once Upon a Chef" and modified it to include paleo ingredients. This is an amazing recipe with so much flavor. You have to try it!
What you need:
2 lbs ground chicken (I use one lb dark meat and one lb white)
3 T. coconut oil
1 large red onion, chopped
2 T. finely chopped fresh ginger
3-4 cloves minced garlic
2 T. coconut aminos
2 T. Red Boat fish sauce
1 T. honey
2 t. lime zest
3 T. fresh squeezed lime juice (from zested limes)
1/2 t. red pepper flakes
2 large scallions, white and green parts, finely sliced
1/2 C Chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 C chopped cashews
1 large head iceberg or butter lettuce
How to do it:
Heat the coconut oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onion and ginger and cook, stirring frequently until soft about 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook one more minute. Add ground chicken and turn heat up. cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon or spatula, until partially cooked through. Add the soy sauce, fish sauce, honey, lime zest, lime juice and red pepper flakes and continue to cook, stirring frequently to break up the meat until the chicken is cooked through. Off the heat, stir in the scallions, cilantro and nuts. Salt and pepper to your liking.
To prepare lettuce, place on cutting board and cut off stem and then cut around the inner core of the lettuce and remove the base part of the core. Discard the ragged outer leaves . Rinse the lettuce on the outside and inside and drain slightly. Gently pull apart the leaves and place on a paper towel to dry.
Spoon chicken mixture into lettuce cups and serve with sriracha, finely sliced carrots, lime wedges, cilantro and mint sprigs.
I was flipping through facebook a while ago and came across Diane Sanfilippo's Balanced Bites site. I love her book Practical Paleo and the thoughtful way she has implemented 30 day plans for almost anyone who is looking for something specific. Her book is a great paleo resource as well as a wonderful cookbook. On her Facebook page, she had a recipe for Buffalo Chicken Egg Muffins and I was intrigued. I have made veggie egg muffins and sausage egg muffins, but had never embarked on a buffalo chicken egg muffin adventure before. So with her recipe as inspiration, I made the muffins, but with little changes to suit my hot N spicy taste buds. I used ground chicken instead of shredded and added 4 cups of spinach to up the veggie count. I also like a little more hot sauce. These are delicious and when made ahead, an easy breakfast to grab on the go. These are also Whole30 compliant in the event you are doing a 30 day challenge.
Buffalo Chicken Egg Cups a la Leeny
1 lb ground chicken
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 dozen eggs
1 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. Penzey's California seasoned pepper or plain black pepper
4 T. Kerrygold butter (clarified if doing a Whole30) or ghee
1/3 Cup Frank's Red Hot hot sauce
4 cups spinach (or 4 big handfulls)
1 bunch green onions, sliced
In a frying pan, saute ground chicken with chopped onion and garlic till cooked through. Set aside to slightly cool. In a large bowl, blend together 1 dozen eggs, garlic powder and pepper. Slowly add the chicken mixture stirring into the eggs to temper the egg mixture slightly.
Recipe inspiration courtesy of Diane Sanfilippo of Balanced Bites.
I am always looking for that perfect paleo dish. You know the one that tastes good at dinner and equally as good at breakfast or lunch as leftovers. This recipe from Multiply Delicious fits that standard. You can make a big double batch and serve at dinner with a side of veggies, at breakfast with a fried egg on top, and then at lunch over some wilted spinach. Actually, they also taste very good just cold out of the fridge when you come home from your workout and you're looking for good recovery food. In my adaptation of this recipe, I've doubled it and added a lb of ground white meat chicken and a lb of ground thigh meat. I also chop up the sweet potato pretty fine in my food processor. The combo of a good protein along with the carb from the sweet potato make these an amazing choice for post workout recovery. The kale is finely chopped so if you don't like the flavor of kale, you won't even notice it in these. Spinach would be another fine alternative to the kale for a different twist. However you do it, you won't be disappointed. Make a double batch and have an easy grab and go meal or snack for the rest of the week. You can find the complete recipe here from Multiply Delicious. Below is my adaptation for a double batch and subbing already ground chicken.
Sweet Potato and Kale Chicken Patties
(courtesy of Multiply Delicious and doubled by me)
2 green onion, finely chopped
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and finely chopped in a food processor
5 cups kale, finely chopped (leaves only)
1 pound ground white meat chicken (breast)
1 pound ground dark meat chicken (thigh)
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1-2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
4 tablespoons coconut flour
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat with 1 T coconut oil or ghee. Add green onions and cook until tender, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Add sweet potatoes and cook for 4 to 5 more minutes, until barely tender. Add kale and cook until wilted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside.
Add chicken to a large mixing bowl. Add salt, garlic, paprika, Dijon mustard, rosemary, egg, coconut flour, and sweet potato mix. Mix together with hands until well combined.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. (I made these once and didn't refrigerate and they were still good!)
Divide your chicken mixture into about 14-15 patties, or the size you wish.
Coat a large non-stick pan with coconut oil or even better bacon grease to just coat the bottom (not a lot). Add patties and cook until golden crust forms, about 5 to 6 minutes, then flip to the other side and cook until golden and cooked through.
This double batch makes enough for dinner with lots of leftovers for tomorrow! I love mine hot with sriracha over the top. Check out the Multiply Delicious website for lots of other great paleo recipes. It is a wonderful resource!
I've had a number of people ask me to break down the macros on this item so I remade this recipe being very precise with the amounts and came up with this guide. This made twenty one, 100g raw patties. I fried all 21 in a total of 1/2 cup coconut oil.
1.31 lb (586 g) chicken thigh meat
1.30 lb (586 g) chicken breast meat
5 cups (300g) finely chopped kale
1 sweet potato (3 cups or 453g) finely chopped
4 green onions (30g)
4 garlic cloves (20g)
2 t dijon mustard
2 medium eggs
4T coconut flour
1T olive oil
1/2 cup coconut oil for frying
Total calories for 1 pattie: 117 kcal
Total Protein: 14g
Total fat: 9g
Net Carb: 6.6g
Every once in a while, a recipe comes around that is so good, it must be shared. Mind you, this is not a recipe I came up with. I happened to come across it in internet paleoland, but knew I had to give it a try. Well I did, and the results were dramatic. My son who is a die hard Chic-Fil-A connoisseur gave this a thumbs up...and he rarely gives anything I make his approval. These nuggets were meant to taste similar to what you'd find at the fast food chain. The recipe is from the Domestic Man and it needs to be part of your paleo rotation! This website has amazing recipes so take some time to cruise around and check out all it has to offer. I am doing my due diligence over here and am going to share his recipe because it must live on. I figured that research scientists replicate other's experiments to improve the validity of the findings. Well that's what I did here. I validated Domestic Man's paleo chicken nugget findings. Spoiler alert...the chicken is brined in pickle juice, dipped in arrowroot powder and THEN in egg before it is fried in coconut oil. But he had me at Pickle Juice.
IngredientsGluten Free, Paleo Chicken Nuggets
from The Domestic Man
(or use chicken tender strips)
1/2 cup dill pickle juice
1/4 cup arrowroot starch or tapioca starch
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup lard or refined coconut oil, more if needed
1. Combine the chicken pieces and pickle juice in a resealable plastic bag; marinate for at least 1 hour but up to six hours. When the chicken has finished marinating, strain it through a colander to drain out the extra pickle juice. Move the chicken around to make sure it drains properly. As the chicken drains, prepare your breading by combining the starch, paprika, black pepper, and salt. Beat the eggs in a wide bowl and set aside.
2. Preheat your oven to 250F. On your stove, warm the lard or coconut oil in a cast iron skilletover medium heat for 3 minutes. In a mixing bowl, toss the chicken pieces with the starch mixture until evenly coated. With your fingers, dip a starchy chicken piece in the egg, shake off the excess egg (eggcess!), then carefully add it to the oil. Repeat until you have filled your skillet; be careful not to overcrowd the chicken pieces. Fry the chicken until cooked through, flipping every 2 minutes, about 6-8 minutes per batch.
3. As you finish each batch, place the cooked pieces on a plate lined with paper towels; put them in the oven to stay warm. You should be able to cook the chicken pieces in about 3 or 4 batches, depending upon the size of your skillet. The oil should reach halfway up the chicken pieces while cooking, add more oil if needed. Be sure to watch the heat, as the skillet will get warmer over time; adjust heat as needed. You’re looking for an oil temperature around 350F. Use a splatter screen to prevent splattering.
4. Serve warm with ketchup, barbecue sauce, or honey mustard.
** Use this technique as a basis for other nugget-like recipes, like what you’ll seen in Thursday’s recipe. Some recipes would taste better without pickle juice; in those circumstances, marinate the chicken in 1/2 cup water mixed with 1 tbsp kosher salt.
(I have completely cut and pasted the recipe off his site so again, I want to give credit to THE DOMESTIC MAN).
One of my favorite things to eat is homemade chicken salad. I've had lots of versions with a variety of mix ins, but I keep going back to this. The celery and apples give it a nice crunch with a hint of sweetness to offset the onions. I love adding sliced, roasted almonds for another type of crunch. And lemon juice brightens the whole thing. For the chicken, you can boil your own, pick the meat off the bones, and save the delicious broth for a later use. Or you can take a shortcut and buy a roasted chicken from the deli and pick the meat from it. Be sure to boil those bones to create a delicious stock as well. Nothing goes to waste.
6 cups chopped chicken
2 T. chopped parsley
1 C chopped celery
1 Honey Crisp apple, peeled and diced
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup roasted almonds
1 C. paleo mayonnaise
1 t. salt
1/2 t white pepper
juice of one lemon
In a large bowl, combine the chicken, parsley, celery, apple, green onions and almonds and mix to combine. In a smaller bowl, combine mayo, salt white pepper and lemon juice and blend. Pour the mayonnaise mixture over the chicken and mix well. Taste and season with more salt and ground black pepper if needed.
I wanted to share a delicious recipe with you that I make all the time and I call it Tex Mex Green Chicken. This recipe was inspired by the amazing green chicken enchilada filling that I always enjoy at some of my favorite Mexican restaurants. At El Mirador in San Antonio, a wonderful lady named Olga makes this amazing jalapeno green salsa and she gave me some tips on how to make it myself. There are shortcuts to the green sauce if you are in a hurry (a can of Herdez green tomatillo sauce) but if you take the time to make your own sauce, the taste is out of this world.
I will break this recipe down into three steps. First you have to boil and pick your chicken, then make the green sauce, and finally assemble all the parts together to make the Tex Mex Green chicken.
1 whole chicken
2 onions; one quartered and one diced
1 bunch fresh cilantro
5 cloves peeled garlic
salt and pepper to taste
1 recipe Jalapeno Green Sauce
Step 1: Place whole chicken in a large pot. Add quartered onion, garlic, and cilantro. Add about 4-6 cups of water and 1/2 teaspoon salt to the water. Cook on medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and continue to let chicken simmer for about an hour or until it is very tender.
When chicken is cool, drain chicken broth and set aside. Pick the meat from the chicken and dice up the larger pieces. Set aside.
In a saucepan or large saute pan, saute remaining diced onion in 1 T. olive oil on medium heat until onions are tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add about 3 T. chopped cilantro and stir. Add reserved chicken meat and about 1 cup reserved broth along with 1-2 teaspoons of cumin (or to taste) and stir. Finally, add about 1 cup of the Jalapeno green sauce and stir. Season with salt and pepper.
Here is another delicious course we had at our cooking class courtesy of Paul Hamilton, owner of Vin de Set. This was amazing and the flavor comes from simple but quality ingredients. Don't be discouraged by the steps involved. The broth is rich, nourishing and delicious and worth the extra effort. This is a wonderful dish to serve family or to impress guests! Serves 6-8.
1 whole free range chicken
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 large yellow onion, chopped
3 quarts water
1 T. apple cider vinegar
1 bay leaf
1 T. herbes de provence seasoning
Butcher whole chicken by removing both breasts, tenderloins, and skin. Remove thighs and separate from legs. De-bone thighs. Place breasts, tenderloins and thigh meat in the refrigerator. (Another option would be to boil the whole chicken, and when it is finished, pick cooked chicken meat off bones to save for chicken salad or to make Tex Mex Green Chicken.)
Place remaining parts of the chicken including the body, legs, neck, gizzard and heart in a stock pot with all remaining ingredients and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook on low 3-4 hours.
Strain broth through a metal sieve removing all bones and solids which can be discarded. Chill broth in refrigerator. Skim off fat layer from the top. (You can save this fat or "schmaltz" for use in sauteeing or adding flavor to veggies. Store in fridge).
2 skinless boneless chicken breasts
1 carrot, peeled, julienned lengthwise 4" long
1 parsnip, peeled, julienned lenthwise 4" long
1/4 rutabega or turnip, peeled julienned lenthwise 4'' long
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
6-8 sprigs fresh parsley
Heat chilled broth mixture up to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Taste broth and season to taste or continue to reduce liquid until desired taste is achieved. (If you did not make your own broth, you can sub store bought broth.)
Cut breasts crosswise into 6 or 8 equal portions. Pound out into 1/2" thick medallions. Season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper and saute with oil (olive oil, clarified butter, or even the leftover chicken fat will work) over medium heat until golden brown on both sides.
While chicken is cooking, blanch the julienned veggies in the broth for 3-5 minutes. Remove veggies with a strainer and place evenly in a mound on the bottom of 6-8 large soup bowls. Place sauteed chicken on top of the vegetables with a sprig of fresh parsley. Pour 6-8 oz of hot broth over each bowl and serve immediately.
The other night, I made a wonderful chimichurri sauce (credit to The Refined Chef) to go over flank steak. The sauce had an incredible flavor and did the meat just right. I ate it again the next night and when the meat was gone, I wondered what to do with the leftover chimhicurri sauce. I also happened to have some leftover roasted chicken so I decided to whip up Chimichurri Chicken Salad. It's a twist on traditional chicken salad and the unexpected flavor pairings make this a memorable recipe.
4 cups chopped or shredded cooked chicken
1 apple (I used honey crisp, but fuji or granny smith would work too), peeled and chopped
1/4 - 1/2 cup sliced, roasted almonds
3/4 cup paleo mayonnaise
1/4 cup chimichurri sauce (see recipe below) or to taste
fresh pea shoots or salad greens
Chimichurri Sauce (From the Refined Chef website)
1 cup (packed) fresh Italian parsley
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar (I love Vom Fass vinegars)
1/4 cup (packed) fresh cilantro
2 garlic cloves, peeled
3/4 t. dried crushed red pepper
1/2 t. ground cumin
1/2 t. salt
Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth. Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise and chimichurri sauce and mix well. In a large bowl, add the cooked chicken, chopped apple and roasted almonds. Toss with the mayo/chimichurri sauce until creamy and the consistency you prefer.
Serve atop fresh pea shoots or mixed greens. Garnish with lime wedges to squeeze over the top.
Here is where you will find all my favorite, go to recipes. Whether you are looking for a weeknight staple or a "once in a while" treat, these are my tried and trues.