• Italian Spiced Meatballs

    Paleo Italian Meatballs

    There is nothing quite like a piping hot bowl of meat shaped like a ball.  Today, I bring you good old fashioned Italian meatballs – paleo style.  These are super easy to make, and a great quick meal on a … Continue reading

  • IMG_3024

    Top 10 Reasons I Wanted to Change My Life

    Welcome to Motivation Monday, my dear paleo pastor readers!  Today I felt like a Top 10 list was coming on, so I am happy to announce that on this Motivation Monday I will be bringing you my Top 10 reasons … Continue reading

  • Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries 1

    Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

    Happy Saturday! Well, we are officially getting back into the swing of things around here. Labor Day Weekend is upon us, and this means that for many of us our schedules will be shifting and changing in a couple of … Continue reading

  • 2014-05-20 06.19.42

    What Did the Gym Ever Do To You?

    Hope that you all are well on this Motivation Monday, and ready for the next post in our series on “Redeeming Our Words.”  Today, I want to tackle a subject that is pretty touchy for most.  Hopefully, I find some … Continue reading

Changes

Hello all and welcome to my last post for a while. Since it is Monday, I figured I would tie in a little Motivation Monday for you all (including myself).

There are some big changes coming up in my life, starting with the first change that I will be stepping down from being a pastor and will be transitioning to become the next Executive Director for this amazing non-profit here in the Boston area called Amirah, that houses women who have been sex trafficked in Massachusetts and seeks to a refuge for women on the journey from exploitation to liberation. I am incredibly humbled and excited all at the same time to start up this new venture.

So, that means that I will no longer be “the paleo pastor.” I will still be paleo, but not yet sure what to call myself or this blog for that matter. I also just need to take some time off from this to get acclimated to this new role and the changes that will come with it. So, a hiatus is in order. I want to thank all of you for your support and love while I have done this blog. I have heard from so many of you that you have tried out my recipes and started kicking butt at the gym – that is awesome!!

Since this is Motivation Monday, I want to leave you with this thought. Even when we achieve goals, we have to still continue to make new ones. Even when we have small successes in our journey, we still need to continue to work on the new successes that are needed. Why? Because otherwise we get stagnant and fall into old habits and our trend towards achieving goals and crushing them becomes a slow decline towards what we used to be.

It’s a hard thing to stay disciplined. It is a hard thing to make yourself go work out 3-5 times a week with good workouts that burn calories and build muscle. It is a hard thing to stay disciplined and cook meals at home rather than take the easy road and eat out constantly. But I don’t want to live a life that is easy if it will never satisfy me. I want to be pushed and grow and fail and have to start over and push harder and make goals and crush them and do all of this again and again. This is the life that I want, and it actually starts with me. No one else can make me do these things, I have to.

So, here is to life on hiatus.  It will involve a lot of this…

Bench Press

And even more of this…

Stair Stepper

And that is one thing that won’t be changing.

Who Doesn’t Love a Good Cobbler?

You know what word is fun to say? Cobbler. Go ahead, try it out. Cobbler. Cobbler, cobbler, cobbler! See? So much fun! Now, a cobbler is some sort of fruity filling poured into a baking dish and then topped off with a biscuit or crumble of sorts. So, how do you go about making a cobbler when you have that craving when you are paleo? Break out the almond flour of course!

Strawberry Blueberry Cobbler

Ingredients:

  • Strawberries (2 pints)
  • Blueberries (pint)
  • Honey to drizzle
  • Lemon zest
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 5 T butter, cold and cut into little pieces
  • 1 T cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 T honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 15 oz can of coconut milk (put into your fridge for about an hour)

Preheat your oven to 350. Begin with chopping up your strawberries and put them in a big bowl with your blueberries. Drizzle honey all over them, zest with lemon, stir up and let that sit for about 15 minutes.  While that is sitting, work on your crumble topping by mixing together your almond flour, cinnamon and nutmeg with a fork. Then add in your cold butter and mix well with a fork. Put your fruit mixture into a square baking dish and top off with your crumble. Bake for 30 minutes or until topping gets nice and golden brown.

Strawberry Blueberry Cobbler 1

While it is baking you can work on your coconut milk whipped topping. Take the can out of the fridge and flip it upside down. All of the liquid will have gone to the bottom of the can, so when you flip it upside down and remove the lip from the bottom, then you can easily pour the liquid out and get the harder “milk” out.

Strawberry Blueberry Cobbler 2

Put the hard “milk,” vanilla and honey into a mixer and whip it up.  Take your cobbler out of the oven, scoop out a bit into a small bowl and top off with your coconut whipped cream. Enjoy!

Strawberry Blueberry Cobbler Final

Make Your Kitchen Smell Awesome – Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Well, today is an amazing day. Why do you ask? Because it is our 11th anniversary! What am I doing to celebrate? Well, I thought I would post on the one soup that my husband actually ate and said, “Hey, I actually like this soup a lot!” Normally, when I cook soup, he is not the biggest fan and is always scrounging in the fridge for more food after 15 minutes. But not so with this roasted cauliflower soup! Not only does it taste wonderful, but it will make your kitchen smell amazing as well!!

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil
  • 2 leeks
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • 2 cups veggie stock (more if needed)
  • Bay leaf
  • 15 oz can of coconut milk (full fat)
  • Bacon, enough to garnish

Begin with your cauliflower and garlic. Start off by preheating your oven to 375 degrees. Cut the cauliflower florets off and put those along with the garlic into a roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 1 hour, stirring up every 20 minutes.

Roasted Cauliflower Soup 1

Next get working on your leeks. Trim off the green part as well as the end and then slice in half. Rinse this well under cold water as dirt gets in between the various stems of the leek. Cut into slices. When there is about 10 minutes left in the cooking time for your cauliflower, get a large pot out and put over medium heat with some olive oil. Sauté the leeks in the oil with the cayenne and some salt and pepper. Then grab your cauliflower and garlic and add this into your pot along with the veggie stock and bay leaf.  Simmer for 20 minutes. While the soup is simmering, cook up some bacon and break into bits for your garnish.

Roasted Cauliflower Soup 2

Remove the bay leaf. Puree the mixture either using an immersion blender or regular blender. If you use a regular blender, then pour the pureed soup back into your pot and add in your coconut milk. Serve up in bowls with some bacon and enjoy this wonderful meal!

Roasted Cauliflower Final

Renewed, Refreshed, Ready for Spring: Words from Becca

Well, as I said earlier this week, this will be my last week of posting for a while. I have a big shift coming up in my life (epic blog post coming out later this week), and I do need to take a hiatus for a while.

With this hiatus though comes a hiatus from amazingly awesome posts from my dear friend, Becca, who has taken up Kim’s Challenge.  I have to say, I am pretty bummed that I won’t be reading any Pootie Tang references for a while, but that doesn’t mean that Becca will stop kicking some butt at Kim’s Challenge, even in the blog hiatus.  So, here is her update – be sure to give her some love!

“Seven months ago I was nervous and unsure of how this challenge would affect my life. I’m so thankful for Steph’s decision to create Kim’s Challenge and to support me, and many others through me with our healthy living goals! This is the last post for a while but it comes at a great time!

Similar to my very first guest post last August, I am expectant for big things this season. The month of March was spent healing a foot injury and rolling around on a scooter to avoid putting any weight on my foot (no, there are not pics, lol). I spent some of the month at my parents’ house where I was spoiled with visits from my nieces & nephews and all kinds of yummy paleo meals. I fell in love with salads again when I rediscovered ingredients – banana peppers, jalapenos, jicama, etc. I didn’t really stay on track with my ab workouts as I had intended.

Towards the end of the month, some friends began an ab challenge and since I was still rollin’ around on the scooter, I took that challenge on. It was great to gain some accountability and feel productive despite being off my feet. And just last week, my doctor gave me permission to return the scooter and begin working out again! I never thought I’d be this excited to exercise! I’ve started T-25 and have a motivated friend to help keep me accountable. Also, last year my sister picked up a grill for me at the end of the season.

So my goals for April include not throwing any parts of the grill in frustration during assembly, cooking paleo goodness on the grill, and sticking to the T-25 workout plan. Spring is a time for renewing and starting fresh, which is where I find myself this April. I had a few slip-ups with non-paleo foods at the end of the month, didn’t exercise as I hoped, and I didn’t lose any pounds this month (or gain any). One thing that I’m continuing to realize and remind myself is that the process of healthy living is a whole life change.

Sometimes there will be interruptions in the process but those interruptions don’t negate the whole process. I’m celebrating a renewed mindset and a loss of 60 pounds over a seven month span. And while I have goals set for April and the year to come, my main goal and purpose in this process is glorifying God through my life and devotion to Him. So I’m reminded of the verse that Steph has posted at the header of this blog: ‘whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.’ Becca…out!”

Becca Out

Simply Delicious Roasted Brussels

I think since I have become paleo, I have developed a serious love for brussels sprouts.  You know when you were a kid, and you heard those words “brussels sprouts” and it just sounded like the grossest thing on the planet?  Well, no longer!  “I’m an adult!” (I say in my best Andy Sandberg impression).  And with being an adult, it makes you realize that you want to eat the world of veggies, including those weird sounding brussels.  Here is an incredibly easy, super delicious way to cook them.  Hope that you grow up with me, try these out and find the incredible tasty world of brussels.

Roasted Brussels

Ingredients:

  • Bag of brussels sprouts (about 20 or so)
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • 1 T garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil

Preheat your oven to 375. Cut the stem part of your brussels off and then cut them in half.  Lay your brussels out on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Mix together your spices and then sprinkle your spices all over your brussels.  Pop in the oven for 45 minutes (stirring two or three times so that they don’t char up).

Roasted Brussels 1

After 45 minutes, remove them from the oven and serve them up as an amazing side dish!

Roasted Brussels Final

Everything in my Cabinet Squashed

The other night I stopped at the store and picked up a couple of acorn squashes, knowing full well that I had some ground pork sausage ready to go and a cabinet and fridge filled with items that I needed to cook up or they were going to go bad. I like to call this Everything in my Cabinet Squashed or Squashed Bolognese.  You can seriously substitute any of the items below and make up your own goodness.

Ingredients:

  • 2 acorn squashes
  • 1 lb ground pork sausage (to make your own, just add in 1 T of garlic powder, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp ground sage, 1 tsp red pepper chili flakes and some salt and pepper)
  • 15 oz can of artichokes, drained
  • 15 oz can of diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 12 grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 oz Bella mushrooms, sliced
  • Handful of shredded carrots
  • Basil for garnish

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Get a very sharp knife and split your acorn squashes in half.  Scoop out the seeds.  Drizzle with some olive oil and season with oregano, salt and pepper.  Put on a rimmed baking sheet face up and bake for 30-45 minutes.

Squashed Bolognese 1

While the squash is cooking, get a large cast iron skillet out and heat it up over medium heat.  Brown your ground pork sausage.  Once browned, drain and set aside in another dish.  Add your onions to the skillet with a little olive oil and scrape up all of the wonderful sausage bits in your pan while your onions cook (be sure to use a silicon or wooden spoon for this). Add in your garlic and mushrooms after your onions have become translucent and cook for another 5 minutes or so over medium heat.  Make sure that your garlic doesn’t burn.

Squashed Bolognese 2

Then add in your tomatoes and sweat those down for about 5 minutes.  Add in the rest of your vegetables, season with salt and pepper and then add the pork back in stirring everything together.  Once your acorn squash is ready, you can scoop a handful of your bolognese into your squash and top off with some chopped basil.

Squashed Bolognese Final

Seriously, does it get any yummier than that??

Springtime Paleo Strawberry Banana Muffins

Are you ready for spring?  Because it is here!  Here is a great springtime recipe for Paleo Strawberry Banana Muffins.  Hope that you get to try them and enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 12 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup diced strawberries
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 T strawberry jam
  • 1 banana
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Start off by mushing your banana and mixing all of your wet ingredients into that. Mix your dry ingredients together and then mix the two bowls all into one.  Pour your mixture into muffin tins and bake for 25-35 minutes (depending on your oven).

StrawberryBananaMuffins1

Pop out of the oven and enjoy!!

StrawberryBananaMuffins2

1 2 21