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PINTEREST DINNER: Crock Pot Paleo Beef Stew (PICTURE)

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Here’s the final product of the Crock Pot Paleo Beef Stew I made! I cooked it for 5 hours on high in my crock pot.

It’s really delicious, and here’s what I love about it:

  • It tastes clean (it’s not heavy whatsoever)
  • So many veggies
  • The sweet potatoes (instead of regular potatoes). From having the chunks cook in the crock pot for that long, it got very tender and actually tasted like a stewed regular potato with a hint of sweetness, and no starchiness involved!
  • The beef (it’s lean and tender)
  • The broth (flavorful and not heavy)

Thanks again to Tales of a Closet Homemaker !

 

 

PINTEREST DINNER: Crock Pot Paleo Beef Stew

Eating out of convenience is my motto.

And easy cooking for me, a single on-the-go chickie in Ohio, is a huge plus.

A snow storm is supposed to move into the Dayton area tonight. And with that, I thought about beef stew for dinner, to eat warm & hearty tonight. I’m craving it!

As I was searching Pinterest for recipes, a thought prevailed on me:

“Why don’t I make a paleo recipe?”

While I’ll admit, I by no means stick to any one diet or another (I love my sweets!), I love trying new things, healthy or not, and paleo is definitely one of those healthy things that’s really good and I recommend!

The paleo diet, according to thepaleodiet.com, says the following about what the diet actually consists of:

“The Paleo Diet is based upon eating wholesome, contemporary foods from the food groups our hunter-gatherer ancestors would have thrived on during the Paleolithic era, the time period from about 2.6 million years ago to the beginning of the agricultural revolution, about 10,000 years ago. These foods include fresh meats (preferably grass-produced or free-ranging beef, pork, lamb, poultry, and game meat, if you can get it), fish, seafood, fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and healthful oils (olive, coconut, avocado, macadamia, walnut and flaxseed). Dairy products, cereal grains, legumes, refined sugars and processed foods were not part of our ancestral menu.”

Thought this was interesting too, the website also says:

Decades of research by Dr. Loren Cordain and his scientific colleagues demonstrate that hunter-gatherers typically were free from the chronic illnesses and diseases that are epidemic in Western populations, including:

  • Obesity
  • Cardiovascular disease (heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, atherosclerosis)
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Autoimmune diseases (multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, etc.)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Acne
  • Myopia (nearsightedness), macular degeneration, glaucoma
  • Varicose veins, hemorrhoids, diverticulosis, gastric reflux
  • Gout

After browsing and browsing I came across a fabulous recipe by another fellow Ohio blogger, Tales of a Closet Homemaker.

Truly I feel this was a case of fate.

Here’s her fabulous paleo recipe that I’m trying out tonight (with the link to her post):

Crock Pot Paleo Beef Stew

Ingredients:

2lbs beef stew meat

6 stalks of celery, chopped

1 large onion, chopped

1 pack mushrooms, chopped

1 bag baby carrots, chopped (4 or 5 whole)

1 bag frozen peas

3 potatoes diced (skins on)

2 TBS minced garlic

1 can diced tomatoes(or 1 1/2 cups)

1 can crushed tomatoes (or 1 1/2 cups)

1 cup beef broth

2 TBS Parsley (dried)

2 TBL Basil (dried)

1 1/2 TBL Sea salt

1 TBL Pepper

Instructions:

Throw it all in the crock pot (this will fill a 5 qt to the very top).  Cook high 4-6 or low 7-10.  You can’t really overcook this one, and it can be assembled the night before and left in the refrigerator.

Here’s how I’m doing it:

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The top left picture has most of the ingredients. I used:

  • Lean Angus beef stew meat (I love lean meats and saw this on sale at Kroger today, got very excited!)
  • A can of crushed tomatoes
  • A can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup of beef broth
  • Two sweet potatoes, chopped (sweet potatoes are hard to chop when uncooked, do you agree? I used these instead of regular potatoes. Very paleo 🙂 )
  • A pack of mushrooms, chopped
  • 7 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped

The top right picture has the spices, I used:

  • 2 TBS parsley (dried)
  • 1 TBS Italian Seasoning spices, Garlic & Herb ( I didn’t have basil so opted for this instead)
  • 1 TBS black pepper
  • 1/2 TBS salt (the less salt the better in my opinion)
  • A little over 2 TBS chopped garlic (I loveee garlic.)

The bottom picture: I loaded all of the ingredients into my crock pot (with a liner in) and am going to cook it on high for 4-6 hours.

Excited to show you the final result!

I’ll post a picture later!

In the meantime, bon appetit and Happy Crocking! (And thank you, Tales of a Closet Homemaker for providing a fun recipe to try tonight!)

SWEET TREATS: Oreo Brownies

My brother and one of my best friends are coming to town this evening via road trip. Love you both 🙂

In the past day or so, I’ve been envisioning in my head what I could bake them as a “Welcome to Ohio” surprise.

My mind immediately went to Oreo’s.

I’m very, very close with my family. I love my family very much. I love my brother very much, and one of the things we always do together when we see each other is late at night, we watch TV shows, hang out, and have cookies and milk. Usually, it’s between Oreo’s, some sort of chocolate chip cookies (be it Wegman’s brand, Pathmark brand, etc.), some sort of dessert with chocolate in it. We’ve inducted Aisha into this tradition as well. 🙂

So as I LOVE brownies, I thought, why not make some Oreo Brownies?

When I was younger, there was a boxed mix of Oreo Brownies that were probably some of the best brownies I’ve EVER had. I ALWAYS looked forward to those brownies. Soft, moist, fudgy, warm (!) chocolatey brownies, with a glaze on top. Heaven!

But ever since then, I’ve never seen that boxed mix in stores. I’ve seen pre-packaged wannabes (already baked), but nothing compares.

So tonight, I attempt to make some yummy Oreo brownies, via one of my new favorite hobbies, Pinterest. 🙂

Thank you so much, Suburban Coupon Mom, for your post, and for the inspiration!

Here is her recipe for Oreo brownies:

2 boxes of brownie mix ( I used Ghiradelli) and bought a family sized box of Oreos because they were on sale!!

1/2 Cup of Water

2/3 Veggie Oil

2 Eggs

1 sleeve of Oreos crushed

CREAM TOPPING

1/2 Stick of Butter

1/2 teaspoon Vanilla

2 Tble spoons of Milk

1 to 1 1/2 cup powder sugar.. add gradually and check for consistancy

I’ve made a few modifications. Instead of using two boxes of brownie mix, I went for one. My favorite go-to brownie mix I’ve been using as my base at the store is Betty Crocker Ultimate Fudge (with Hershey‘s Fudge, yum!)

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Mix the brownie mix as per usual using the ingredients listed on the box (water, vegetable oil, egg, fudge packet, mix).

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Tonight I decided to use my brownie pan for the occasion. As it has three rows (for easier slicing), I greased the pan with butter, then put some of the mix in my pan.

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You could get creative with exactly what kind of Oreo to buy (there are so many flavors now). My brother loves Double Stuf’s, but tonight at Kroger I discovered there are Oreo’s a step up from Double Stuf, called Mega Stuf! (Can you believe it?!) 🙂

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I layered a row of Oreos into my pan and then put the remaining brownie mix on top. You’re going to have to make a judgment of how much to put in each row. This time around for me, there wasn’t enough batter left to cover the Oreo’s, but that’s okay. We’ll see how the batter forms around the cookie.

I’m also not following a specific “done” time. My first aim was at 25 minutes at 350. From then on, I kept checking with a fork into the middle (if it comes out clean, it’s done!).

As of 12:53 a.m.: 25 minutes baked at 350 degrees, stuck the fork in, came out a little covered in batter.

Put timer on for 7 more minutes.

Second check: 1:01 a.m. – still not 100 % there yet. Putting on another three minutes.

Third times the charm: 1:05 a.m. – dunzo!

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While I’m letting those cool down a bit, I’m starting up the glaze. Instead of making the glaze directly in the pan, I’m going to do another double boiler, only because I don’t want the glaze burning or sticking in a pan.

I mix all ingredients as per the recipe above and put it in the double boiler:

IMG_4048I put the half stick of butter in the bowl and melted it on close to high temperature on the stove…

IMG_4049Then I got the vanilla out. 🙂

IMG_4050As soon as the butter melts, mix the vanilla, and milk together, stirring constantly.

Then, add the confectioners sugar slowly. It’ll turn into the glaze-like consistency, like this:

IMG_4055IMG_4056I tested the glaze, it is DELICIOUS!

IMG_4057Here is the final product. I poured the glaze on the brownies and spread evenly.

Let cool, slice up and serve.

Enjoy!

 

PINTEREST DINNER: Potato Chip Casserole

Sometimes, you just don’t feel like cooking.

Am I right friends?

I absolutely love cooking, but as a single chickie exploring her new city, I love trying all the different new foodie spots around here. (And by the way, I freaking love Kroger sushi as a meal. Inexpensive, fresh, and a great variety. If you love sushi, you should try it!)

But then there are some times where you want to cook, but you don’t want to spend all your time (and money!) whipping up a fancy dinner.

I’ll admit, that happens to me. One of my latest go-to meals so far here in Dayton is this delicious popcorn chicken (from Kroger) , buffalo style or plain, you throw it in the oven for 20 minutes, and then I either have some salad or pasta with it.

But tonight I wanted something different. Something easy to make, but a step up from popcorn chicken and salads.

I was thinking about what I had already in my kitchen, and how I could enhance it.

My mind went to the two low sodium chunk light tuna cans I had in the cabinet.

I went to Pinterest and searched “easy dinner recipes tuna” and found this gem:

Potato Chip Casserole.

My first reaction while sitting in the car looking at this before I go into Kroger: “Whaaaaaat?!” (In excitement!)

The description is what sold me: “Potato Chip Casserole. Easy recipe. Five ingredients. Half hour in the oven. Dinner is served!”

Here’s the recipe from franklymydearmojo.com:

INGREDIENTS:

1 bag (12 oz.) potato chips, crushed
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup, undiluted
1 can Cream of Chicken soup, undiluted
1/2 soup can of milk
1 can (12 oz.) chicken or tuna

Well, I modified the recipe for me. There’s now 6 ingredients (the sixth you’ll see later):

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A can of cream of chicken soup, a can of cream of mushroom soup, TWO cans of tuna, three big handfuls (that you crush up) of potato chips (I used reduced fat ones), and half a soup can of milk.

Here’s how I made it:

1) Add the can of cream of mushroom soup into a bowl.

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2) Test the potato chips (because well, you have to test the potato chips, right? 🙂 )

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3) Add the cream of chicken soup can & the three big handfuls of potato chips (don’t forget to crush those with your hands!):

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4) Wash and drain the tuna (I always like to do that, especially if its in water or oil):

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5) Add the tuna into the bowl:

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6) Add the half cup of milk:IMG_4025

7) Add two slices of cheddar cheese (who doesn’t love cheese?! :))IMG_4026

8) Mix it all up in the bowl!

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9) I used a small Pyrex casserole dish, pour and spread mixture evenly into dish, and I added some potato chips on top (for presentation purposes ;))IMG_4029

10) Bake at 350 for 35 minutes (I let it cook a little longer than the recipe says, 30 minutes)

Here’s what it looks like when it’s done:

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11) Scoop some in a bowl, add your seasonings (I used some black pepper)

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12) Enjoy!

I’ve never had a potato chip casserole before, what I am loving about this dish is that the potato chips when cooked disguise for a mashed potato taste, and then with the tuna, the two soups added in and the dash of cheese and milk, it makes for a rich, hearty, filling dish, that won’t cost you the big bucks, and is super easy to make!

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