No-Poo-ing??

I just no-pooed for the first time, and my hair looks and feels awesome! For those of you unfamiliar with the no-poo method of hair cleansing, its simple: stop washing your hair with shampoo and conditioner, start cleansing with baking soda and apple cider vinegar! I admit, I was very sceptical. But after one try, my hair is soft and shiny and very clean! The vinegar is somehow really amazing at conditioning! I look forward to seeing (i think) the long term effects of no-poo-ing! And just think of the money I will be saving! Ditching chemicals AND saving money…..awesome!

If you want to give it a try yourself, here’s what you do:

Step 1: Throw away all your shampoo and conditioner
Step 2: Purchase two condiment “squirt bottles” (.97 cents each), baking soda, and apple cider vinegar (ACV).
Step 3: In one bottle mix up 1 part baking soda to 1 part water (shake well). In the second bottle blend ACV and water, 50/50.
Step 4: Wet your hair, pour the baking soda mix on your scalp working front to back row by row. Massage your head for a minute or to, rinse well
Step 5: Apply small amount of ACV mix to ends of hair. Rinse well.
Step 6: Dry, style as usual.

Now back to food. Today was another success. Almonds and blackberries for breakfast, and some tasty deer sausage from my co-worker’s hubby’s latest kill for a mid-morning snack! And tonight I made an amazing strawberry, spring mix, pecan, and goat cheese salad with a homemade honey-dijon vinegarette. I also bought this awesome water bottle thats bpa-free and filters water on the go, to hopefully encourage my water in take….AND it cuts down on my water bottle waste! Another two-fer!! 

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Mmm, CHOCOLATE

This morning, I created yet another delicious smoothie. I was inspired by this recipe by Beautiful Vegan, which by the way, is a recipe you simply must try. Literally, it will change your life! Anywho, in thinking on this delectable creation, I decided to create a creamy, chocolatey, protein packed, smoothie. I blended frozen strawberries, with raw cocoa powder, protein powder, avacado, a splash of vanilla extract, and water. The end result was quite tasty. I will make some changes the next time I make it, like increasing the cocoa powder. As it is, its somewhat bitter in a semi-dark chocolate kind of way, so you may find you enjoy it as is.

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Smoothie

5 medium frozen strawberries
1/2 Avacado
1 scoop of strawberry whey protein powder
2T raw cocoa powder
1tsp vanilla extract
1/2c water

Blend well. Drink.

On another note, in my endeavor to become a healthier, sexier, beast, i’ve decided to begin eliminating toxins/chemicals externally, as well.
Ive began using a olive oil/coconut oil blend to wash my face, and thus far im loving the results! Theres lots of info on the web about what oils are best for various skin types, so take the time to do a little research if you want to give this a try. The method is simple. Massage oil or blend oils on to your dry face. Massage all over, then apply a wet washcloth over your face thats as hot as you can tolerate to open up your pores. Massage again, repeat steaming, pat dry. Easy. Im also surrendering my shampoo for baking soda/water and my conditioner for Apple Cider Vinegar. I start tomorrow so i’ll keep you posted on the results!

As always, thanks for reading!!

The incredible, edible, coconut!

Tonight, I wanted soup again. But this time, I was craving a creamy, rich soup. I was going to try something with cream cheese…..but then I looked at the ingredients in cream cheese….and I was SHOCKED! There is so much more in cream cheese than milk. Check it out sometime. So I turned to coconut milk to acheive the creamy I was craving, and i’m so glad I did!

Here is the soup:

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I’ll call it….

Creamy Dreamy Chicken Soup

1/2 stick grass-fed butter
2c. Sliced mushrooms
1 can of organic diced tomatoes
1.5 pounds chicken (the REAL kind) cut into bite-size pieces
1, 10oz bag of fresh spinach
1 pack of Good Seasons Zesty Italian Seasoning mix
1 can of coconut milk ( I used just the thick top and discarded the water in the bottom of the can to acheieve ultimate creaminess)

Melt butter over med-high heat, saute mushrooms til tender. Add tomatoes, chicken, and seasoning. When chicken is just about done, add entire bag of spinach, cover with lid. Stir occasionally. When spinach is all wilted, remove lid, let it reduce to desired creaminess, serve in a big bowl, then eat it with great pleasure! This made enough for me, two kids, and PLENTY of leftovers.

Happy eating!!

Zzzzzoup!!

Nothing in this world brings me comfort and feelings of snuggliness like a big, warm, bowl of soup, on a cold night. And one of the greatest things about soup, is the endless possibilities of ingredient combinations. I, especially, like to think outside the bowl, so to speak.
So tonight I took some items I had on hand and made a delicious paleo pot of soup

Beef and Sweet Potato Soup

2T. Coconut oil
Half a red onion sliced
1.5 pounds of ground beef
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
5 cloves of garlic, chopped
4c fresh kale
6c water
Salt and pepper to taste.

Heat oil over med high heat in a large stew pot. Add onion, saute til tender. Add beef, cook thoroughly. Add sweet potatoes.Add garlic, stir just til garlic is very fragrant. Add water. Bring to a rolling boil, cover and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 30 min, stirring frequently.

This soup was hearty, satisfying, and I have plenty of leftovers for lunch tomorrow….and my kids loved it! Next time I might try getting creative with some spices.

I would love to hear what your favorite paleo soup recipes are!  Leave me some comments!!

Back in action! …….again….

So after a 10 day hiatus…take or add a few…..im back. The holidays were tougher than I expected, and there were some definitely “un-paleo” foods on my plate. But the past is the past! So lets move on, shall we?

Tonight I made my own version of Chicken Cacciatore!

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Mmm, yummy. Here’s the recipe:

Chicken Cacciatore

2T Coconut Oil
1 each red, yellow, orange bell pepper, sliced thin
1 med red onion, sliced thin
2 large tomatoes, juice squeezed out, and chopped
1T garlic powder
1tsp basil
1tsp oregano
4-5 chicken breasts, sliced lengthwise, fairly thin

Heat oil over med-high heat, add onion, peppers, and tomatoes. Add garlic, basil, oregano. Stir. Cover, reduce to simmer. Simmer until it reduces to be fairly thick. Add chicken, continue to simmer until chicken in cooked through. Remove cover, increase to med-high heat, stir fry until all excess liquid is cooked off. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve!!!

I served this up with some sauteed kale!

Now, lets get back to my un-paleo choices. I have taken with me a few,lessons. 1) The waterfall effect is sooooo true…why do I keep forgetting. Cheating is like the Pringles jingle, “once you pop, you cant stop”, or its like that for me. Soo, once again, it aint worth it. 2) My emotions and my shitty-eating choices are linked very closely. Sugary, carby foods make me feel good emotionally, at first, then I feel sick physically, then feel bad emotionally….seriously?! What an awful cycle, I got to fix that. Im going to, once again, try journaling. Maybe that will help me dig up some roots. 3)I totally must have a gluten intolerance…lets not get into detail, but really, I must….4) Boredom and/or lack of prep equals poor food choices. So, I will prep better anf find better ways to relieve boredom! And 5), did I mention carbs and sugar make me feel like CRAP?!

Tomorrow morning, I have a date with my Amazon Cloud Player and my tennis shoes. So here I go!

Oh and for you Facebookers, check this chick out, she is a rockstar and currently serving as my newest inspiration. I dont know if she is a paloer, but she sure is awe inspiring!

Ashlee Hendry Fitness

Until tomorrow, night all!

Chicken X 2

Who doesn’t enjoy a tasty yard nU bird?! I for one do! My favorite part of a chicken, is the thighs. I think breast meat is way overrated! I have enjoyed two delicious chicken dinners the past couple of nights. The recipes are as follows:

Asparagus Chicken Bake
(by Mark Sisson)

Preheat oven to broil

3T butter
1/3c olive oil
6 cloves of garlic, chopped well
Zest of 1 lemon
6 anchovie fillets
2, 14oz cans of quartered artichoke hearts, well drained
2 pounds of chicken, cut into pieces

In a large skillet, heat oil and butter over med-high heat. Add anchovies and use a wooden spoon to mash them until they’re mostly dissolved. Remove pan from heat, add garlic and lemon zest, stir well. In a large glass baking dish, add chicken and artichokes. Pour butter sauce on top and use tongs to thoroughly coat chicken and artichokes. Place under broiler, stirring frequently, until chicken is cooked, artichokes will begin to brown on edges. Remove from oven, enjoy!

That dish was so delicious! I was hesitant about the anchovies. I’ve NEVER cooked with them before, but, wow, the flavors could not have been tastier!

The next night, I made my own chicken salad concoction. My kids have been sick, I was feeling pretty tired, so I bought a rotisserie chicken….probably NOT free-range, but….in a pinch….

Chicken Salad

Roughly 2-3 cups of shredded chicken
2 ripe avacados, pitted, peelef, chopped
1/2 med yellow onion, chopped
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in food processor, pulse til well blended. Serve on romaine leaves!

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Not too bad for a quicky supper!

Tonight, I tried to re-create a pasta dish I LOVE, by replacing the pasta with spaghetti squash. Well lets just say tonight was a culinary FAIL! Numero uno: canned asparagus is nasty and should be illegal. Truly, it ruined the entire meal, but “want not, waste not”, we begrudgingly ate it anyway. Next time, I avoid shortcuts, lessons learned. Here is the real recipe:

Lemony Asparagus and Shrimp “Pasta”

2T butter
2T olive oil
1 bunch of FRESH asparagus, tough ends removed
1/4c chicken stock
Juice of 1 lemon
6 cloves of garlic chopped.
1 pound of shrimp
1 spaghetti squash

Bake/microwave your spsghetti squash, remove seeds, scrape the “meat” out with a fork.
Set aside.
Melt butter in oil, in a large frying pan over med heat. Add all ingredients but shrimp and squash, bring to a simmer, and cover. Let asparagus cook until tender-crisp. Remove lid, let sauce reduce until its slightly thickened, then toss in shrimp. Remove from heat as soon as shrimp is done. Toss with spaghetti squash, salt and pepper to taste!!

Hold on bandwagon, wait for me!!

Soooo, this weekend, I incorporated a couple of not so paleo things into my diet. First, friday night I wanted pizza in a baaaaaad way! So, I found a recipe for the infamous cauliflower pizza crust that had a bit of cheese in it…so of course I added cheese to my pizza as well. It was DELICIOUS, a taste spectacular even! I think I actually prefer it over its doughy counterpart! Well the next morning, I had leftover ,prepared, crust ingredients, so I made a breakfast pizza, which was also fantabulous!!!

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Now, I know there is a lot of debate about whether cheese is paleo or not, but in my opinion, paleo or not, its definitely one of those things that I have portion control issues with…..i really heart cheese….. So, I will allow transgressions such as these here and there but cheese cannot be a regular feature in my diet.

My real sin came saturday (there’s that waterfall effect I was talking about). I went to a friends house, who happens to be a world famous baker (well, not really, but she should be…and lucky me, I actually have two friends who fall in this category). Anywho, she had made a really yummy, gluten-free, vanilla, cake with REAL ,homemade, buttercream frosting, that I literally just wanted to bathe in (don’t you judge me!). So I had…some.

I am not riddled with guilt over my decisions. I enjoyed them at time of consumption, and I will enjoy them again one day. But today, I am back in action. And I’m happy about it. I really love eating paleo and I love how eating paleo make me feel.

And just for giggles, im totally giving you the pizza recipe, just in case you are a cheese-eating paleo-er.

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees

1c steamed, riced, cauliflower
1c. Shredded (not grated) parmesean
1 egg
1/2 tbsp each of garlic powder, basil, and oregano

Mix all ingredients well. Grease a baking sheet with coconut oil. Spread crust mix out fairly thin on to baking sheet. Then bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown all over. Pull it out and let it cool down while u prep toppings.

Once you add your toppings, place pizza under broiler just until toppings are brown, and or cheese has melted!

For my breakfast pizza I chopped up a fried egg, and 2 slices of bacon. I used pesto as my base, and topped it with cheddar.

Later, i’ll share last nights supper recipe. Artichoke Chicken Bake a la Mark Sisson!

Happy Trails!!