Community meals are really important to us. Sharing fellowship and a meal with friends is one of our favorite things to do. Free conversation flows over a good meal and friendships grow deeper and connects made over food and drink! Continue reading “Mafe”

Beef Tip Broccoli Stir Fry

I think I’ve mentioned in the past that I’m all about one pot or plate dishes. I like to make one major portion of the meal and not have lots of sides much less complicated sides to concoct. This one fits the bill! It was quick and simple and took less than an hour easy to throw together.

It was a hit in the family and everyone had seconds. I think Tonchi had fourths and we had only one tiny dish of leftovers for Brian’s lunch the next day! We did serve it over rice, but it would taste good over quinoa as well if that is prefered. Sometimes I can do that, but often times it’s near mutiny by husband and kids if there isn’t rice to go with a stir fry. Their Asian blood definitely shows in this preference!

Dear hubby would prefer to have rice once daily if not thrice daily! So limiting it to once a week is quite an adjustment, but it’s all I can do! It is also a relatively cheap filler, which is nice. When we have these types of meals over rice them the whole family can easily eat on a pound of meat. Otherwise it’s a bit of a stretch if there aren’t enough sides to fill them up!

Even though the kids are young it is amazing how much food they can put away. If you’ve ever seen them eat or you’ve been generous enough to have us over, you might not have prepared enough food. The way they eat, you’d think I hadn’t fed them in the last week!

So check out this recipe and let me know what you think!

 photo 5 (1)

Beef Tip Broccoli Stir Fry

4 servings

3 TBSP Arrowroot
¾ cup water, plus
1 lb beef tips cubed
1 small onion sliced
6 garlic cloves finely chopped
2 TBSP chopped fresh ginger
2 TBSP coconut oil
4 cups broccoli florets
⅓ cup tamari
2 TBSP raw honey


  1. In a bowl combine 2 TBSP arrowroot and 2 TBSP of water and mix till smooth
  2. Add beef and mix well till completely covered – Let sit for 30 minutes
  3. Saute onion, garlic and ginger in coconut oil till soft, remove from pan and set aside
  4. In wok over medium high heat stir-fry beef in coconut oil until reaches desired doneness; remove from pan and keep warm.
  5. Steam broccoli in about ¼ cup water until soft and water is mostly gone.
  6. Return beef to pain.
  7. Combine tamari, honey remaining 1 TBSP arrowroot and ½ cup water until smooth
  8. Add to pan
  9. Return all ingredients to the wok and cook for 2 minutes or until warm and thick.
  10. Serve over rice, quinoa or cauliflower rice.

If you try it, let me know how it works out for you and what the rating is with your family!

Grain Free Pizza

Since we have been ridding our home of grains one of the foods we have all mourned the loss of is pizza.  It was a super simple relatively healthy (especially if homemade) dinner that we all enjoyed and all kids would eat with gusto.  Besides, what American family doesn’t enjoy pizza?

The more we missed it the more I was on a rampage to find a substitution.  And a few we have found!  The following two recipes are not mine at all and I don’t even attempt to claim them!  One is made with cauliflower and the other eggplant.  I never would have told you it could be done if I hadn’t done it myself.

These recipes do take some time, but they are simple and easy to follow and it’s well worth the effort.  If you have a [amazon_link id=”B00004S9EM” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]cuisenart[/amazon_link] it makes quick work of the process.  Most of the time is in waiting on the crust to cook before it can be topped and rewarmed. These crusts do well as left overs as well!  I reheat it in the toaster oven (since we have no microwave) and they are crispy, warm and delicious!  I will say these crusts are more comparable to a thin crispy traditional crust… no where near the same as deep dish… so if that is what you are going for, read no further… pass and move on!  Sorry to disappoint!

Another things I’ve done is purchase a few cauliflower or eggplants and process them and freeze in the amounts needed for a crust.  Which makes it super easy to mix up in the future.  You will need to squeeze out the extra water before mixing it up, but it’s a minor extra step!

A few weeks ago I made both of these for dinner with friends who can be foodies and definitely enjoy good food.  They eat pretty healthy, but not paleo or gluten free or dairy free or any of those.  With that said I was a little nervous making a paleo meal we thought was good. It was a hit!  I was relieved and it gave a boost to my belief that these really are good recipes!

Here they both are!  Give it a try!

GAPs-allowed Cauliflower Pizza Crust
This recipe is from Deliciously Organic.  Check out Carrie’s blog for some other great recipes!

(This crust does have cheese in it and my diary free little girl couldn’t enjoy it…. but not to fear… the other pizza was dairy free!)

Makes four 8″ pizzas

4 cups chopped raw cauliflower
1 cup [amazon_link id=”B0006ZN538″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]almond flour[/amazon_link]
3 cups shredded Fontina cheese
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon dried Italian Seasoning
1 teaspoon coarse Celtic sea salt


  • Preheat oven to 450ºF and adjust rack to middle position. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place all crust ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until pureed.
  • Spoon mixture onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper, dividing into 4 servings.
  • Using a spatula , spread each serving of cauliflower mixture into a 10″ round (about 1/4″ thick).
  • Bake for 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and spread 2 heaping tablespoons of marinara on the crust.
  • Top with Fontina and any additional toppings.
  • Bake for an additional 5 minutes until cheese is bubbly and just turning golden brown.









Eggplant Pizza Crust

This recipe was from The Food Lovers Primal Palate.  Check out Hayley and Bill’s blog for other great recipes.

1 whole eggplant
1 egg
1/4 cup [amazon_link id=”B000EDBQ6A” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]flax seed meal[/amazon_link](or just grind up some flax seed in a coffee grinder)
1/4 cup [amazon_link id=”B0006ZN538″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]almond meal[/amazon_link]
Salt and pepper to taste
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (to lightly grease the parchment paper)


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Grate eggplant with a cheese grater. (The skin didn’t seem to want to grate, so we didn’t use it. It also helped to cut the eggplant into large chunks.)
  • Pour grated eggplant into a large mixing bowl.
  • Add in flax meal and almond meal.
  • Whisk egg in a smaller bowl and add to batter.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Mix all ingredients until evenly combined.
  • On a parchment lined baking sheet, pour batter.
  • Smooth batter out with hands into a thin layer (around 1/8″).
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until cooked enough to flip.
  • Remove from oven. Lightly grease another piece of parchment paper, and place on top of crust, carefully flip the crust and then slowly peel off the parchment paper from the bottom side.
  • Brush the flipped side with olive oil.
  • Bake opposite side for about 15 minutes, and remove from oven to apply toppings.

Notes on the Eggplant crust:

  • Baby girl can’t have dairy so I made her pizza with no cheese and it was still quite good!  Try it sometime… not completely necesary to enjoy pizza although I will say I prefer it with!
  • Also baby girl can’t have egg whites, so I made a smaller crust for her that had just egg yolks.  This crust can be made with no eggs and just increase the flax meal by a little bit.

We eat pizza a lot of different ways, but here are some of our favorite toppings!

Our favorite ingredient list:

  • Pepperoni – prefer to use Applegate or some other nitrite, nitrate free version
  • Ham – I often use left over from another dinner, chop it up and throw it on top!
  • Bacon
  • Chicken
  • Sausage

Cheese: GREAT, but not necessary

  • Motzorella
  • Goat cheese – really good with green olives!
  • Feta cheese – with kalamata olives… Mmmmmm

The other stuff:

  • Pineapple
  • Olives – black or green
  • Sauteed onions and mushrooms
  • Red or orange peppers
  • Sauteed spinach – really good with sausage
  • Fresh Basil
  • Roasted garlic – especially good with onions
  • Capers

How do you make your pizza?  Have you tried one of these crusts before?  Let me know what you think!


Sesame Beef and Snow Pea Soup

This is a super quick and easy soup. Quite light and very flavorful. The simple flavors make this enjoyable even on a warm day. Usually dear hubby likes lots of spices and complex flavors. Simple just doesn’t work for him… except this recipe!

The first time I made this I thought for sure no one was going to like it… but I was quite wrong and for that I’m surprised and oh so grateful! Another plus is this is a quick recipe and inexpensive as well!

I often have jars of chicken and beef stock in the fridge ready to go for any soup or stir fry that may need it! By having it on hand makes it easy to whip up a healthy recipe or treat a cough or cold.

This recipe is originally from Bon Appetit, which I’m confused and not sure how such a simple recipe made it into that magazine! But I guess it does speak to it’s great flavor! I did change it a little, but so little that I definitely have to give all the credit to Bon Appetit! My changes are things like homemade stock instead of canned, and [amazon_link id=”B0036FB6FY” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]quinoa[/amazon_link] instead of rice. But read on and see what you think.

Sesame Beef and Snow Pea Soup
(4 servings)

4 cups homemade beef stock
1½ cup 1-inch pieces diagonally cut snow peas (about 6 oz)
1⅓ cup matchstick-size strips red bell pepper
2 cup ½ inch wide strips thinly sliced roast beef (about 10 oz) (or I used thinnly sliced steak, or shaved beef)
1⅓ cup sliced green onions
2 TBSP minced peeled fresh ginger
8 tsp rice vinegar
1 TBSP oriental sesame oil
3 cups cooked [amazon_link id=”B0036FB6FY” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]quinoa[/amazon_link] (about 1 cup uncooked)

Bring broth just to boil in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add snow peas and red pepper and simmer 1 minute. Add beef, green onions and ginger; remove pan from heat. Mix in vinegar and sesame oil. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper. Mound [amazon_link id=”B0036FB6FY” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]quinoa[/amazon_link] in center of deep bowls. Ladle soup over, dividing equally.

Thai Beef Tacos with Lime-Cilantro Slaw (optional with fish)

Just this week we had these for dinner with fish instead of steak.  I had forgotten how good they are! We had dinner with some friends and they agreed they were tasty as well!

I think I’ve mentioned it 1000 times before, but I don’t cook fish very often.  This is a favorite and will be repeated!  Hopefully we don’t get tired of it!  It is so simple and delish!  The slaw to go with it is what makes them so yummy!  I’ve used this same slaw with steak tacos as well and it is just as good.

The original recipe is from Cooking Light in April of 2007.  I don’t think we tried it until last year, so either I had some one’s hand-me-magazines (and I’m glad they didn’t rip out this recipe!) or I just kept the recipe that long!  I’m really not sure which it is.  The original can be viewed here and was for steak, but I almost like the fish better.

The first part of the recipe is for seasoning the steak, which is also amazing.  If you are using this recipe for the fish, then just bake or broil til done.  I used salmon and didn’t season it at all.  The slaw had plenty of seasoning that blended well with the salmon.

As usual, the recipe listed here is VERY similar to the original, but with my own additions/subtractions/clarifications.



1 tablespoon sugar
1 ½ teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1 ½ teaspoons fish sauce
½ teaspoon chili garlic sauce (such as Lee Kum Kee)
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves grated
1 pound flank steak, trimmed
Cooking oil

¼ cup fresh lime juice (lemon works just as well)
 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 ½ teaspoons peeled finely grated fresh ginger
1 ½ teaspoons fish sauce (we like [amazon_link id=”B004M050W2″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Red Boat[/amazon_link])
½ teaspoon chili garlic sauce
4 garlic cloves, grated
3 cups thinly sliced cabbage
2 cups finely grated carrots
¼  cup sliced green onions
½  cup chopped fresh cilantro

Remaining ingredients:
8 (6-inch) fat-free flour tortillas (corn tortillas are much better for the fish tacos)
Or for a grain free option try my tortillas!


To prepare steak:
  1. Combine first 6 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add steak to bag; seal and marinate in refrigerator 2 hours, turning occasionally.
  2. Prepare grill or broiler.
  3. Remove steak from bag; discard marinade. Place steak on grill rack or broiler pan coated with cooking spray; cook 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Let stand 5 minutes. Cut steak diagonally across grain into thin slices.

To prepare fish:

  1. Place in baking dish and bake for approximately 20-30 minutes or until desired dress of doneness. Or grill or briol.
  2. After finished, shred fish into small pieces.

To prepare slaw:

  1. Combine juice and next 6 ingredients (through garlic cloves) in a large bowl. Add cabbage and next 3 ingredients (through cilantro); toss well to combine.

Lia Huber, Cooking Light
APRIL 2007

Enjoy these tasty tacos and let me know how they turn out for you!