Cast Iron Skillet Potato Crust ‘Pizza’

Baby Heirloom TomatoesIt was Sunday morning, everyone was hungry. As our 10 year old would say she was starting to feel hangry (hungry + angry). I needed to go to the grocery store, so there weren’t many food options available. I had eggs, a sweet roasting pepper, leftover browned hamburger, and three yukon gold potatoes from our CSA box left over. I threw them together in a skillet with some ghee and ended up creating this sauceless and no cheese ‘pizza’ with sliced potatoes as the crust. The I had no food options creation was a hit. Everyone had a clean plate afterwords, some had seconds, and I had a new recipe for Cast Iron Skillet Potato Crust ‘Pizza’ just like that.

Wait. Potato crust. Aren’t potatoes, other than sweet potatoes, not Paleo? And don’t you follow a Paleo diet?

Yes, I do follow a Paleo diet. And no, in the original Paleo diet white potatoes are not considered Paleo. I follow my personal Paleo template with what works for me. Being as active as I am means I need more carbs otherwise I cannot continue to have the energy needed to pick heavy things up and put them back down. I do eat white potatoes on occasion in addition to white rice to meet my carb needs. Whole30 now allows white potatoes and there are some discussions about when white potatoes might be okay to eat or not  and why they got the no label to begin with. If you do follow a strict Paleo template it would be really easy to sub the white potato in the recipe with sweet potato. After all, the fun of this recipe is it can be made with any number of toppings just like pizza. It’s very versatile. As long as you have potatoes, white or sweet, and eggs you can throw in whatever toppings you have on hand. I’ve included additional topping suggestions at the end of the recipe to get you started.

In the photo below, the Cast Iron Skillet Potato Crust ‘Pizza’ is served with a salad of baby arugula and quartered baby heirloom tomatoes (pictured above) with an olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, lemon zest, chopped fresh oregano, and salt and pepper dressing.

Cast Iron Skillet Potato Crust 'Pizza'

Cast Iron Skillet Potato Crust ‘Pizza’

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Ingredients
  • 3 Medium to Large Yukon Gold Potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ½ Pound Hamburger, browned
  • 1 Yellow Bell Pepper, diced
  • 1 Orange Bell Pepper, diced
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh Oregano chopped or 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1 Tablespoon Hot Sauce
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Ghee - optional
  • Spectrum Organic All Vegetable Shortening or Butter to grease skillet bottom and sides
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 375° and grease bottom and sides of 12" Cast Iron Skillet with all vegetable shortening or butter (a 9" pie dish can be used if you do not have a cast iron skillet- reduce recipe to 2 potatoes and 5 eggs if using a 9" pie dish).
  2. Layer bottom of skillet with sliced peeled potatoes, after each layer season with salt and pepper.
  3. Overlap potatoes in second layer to fill spaces from first layer.
  4. Optional: spoon 5 to 6, ½ teaspoons of ghee on top of potatoes. Use of ghee adds a creamy taste to the 'pizza' and tricked the husband into thinking this had cheese.
  5. Sprinkle hamburger and yellow and orange bell pepper on top of potatoes.
  6. Whisk eggs with oregano, hot sauce, and salt and pepper. Pour slowly on top of potato and toppings.
  7. Bake in oven for 30 to 35 minutes until egg is cooked through.
Notes
Variations

Additional topping suggestions, instead of hamburger and bell pepper try:

*Sausage and mushrooms

*Spinach, tomato, greek olives, and basil

*Hamburger and shredded carrot

*Chicken, jalapeño, and onion

*What toppings would you try?

 

Products I used when making this recipe:

And now for the disclaimer: The products above and linked to in this post are ones I used in my recipe. I did not receive any financial compensation or product for recommending any brand or product in this post. These are simply my personal recommendations and items I stock in my own kitchen. If you do purchase an item from the Amazon affiliate link located on the shop page, Nourish to Fuel receives a small compensation which helps to cover a portion of the cost for the site. 

Rotisserie Chicken and Cabbage Salad

I’m lucky enough to have a short trek down a hallway at work to get to a microwave at lunchtime. Once there I might have to wait 30 seconds as one person warms their coffee in an uncharacteristically clean work microwave. My husband has the misfortune of having to walk across the shop floor, up a flight of stairs, and then fight to get to one of four dirty microwaves shared by 200 to 300 other hungry people all eating lunch at the same time. While I have it easy microwave wise, I appreciate being able to turn around from my desk and grab my lunch from the personal mini-fridge behind me and just eat lunch (I have a personal fridge in my office just for me due to food allergies). Having a cold lunch to eat is appreciated by the husband as well because he doesn’t have to mad dash to the microwave like it’s the last sale item on black Friday.

Making it even easier to get a cold lunch during the week, is three dollars off rotisserie chickens on Monday’s at Whole Foods. On the way home from work each Monday I stop by to pick up a rotisserie chicken to debone and shred. I usually end up making a rotisserie chicken and cabbage salad which gives us both a couple days of lunches. I might also add the shredded chicken to some chicken stock for a quick soup with some veggies or a spinach salad. But 95% of the time it ends up in the recipe below, which is also great for a pot luck. Sure I could roast my own chicken in the oven, but for the price of a rotisserie chicken on Mondays I take the time and money saver shortcut.

Rotisserie Chicken and Cabbage Salad
Ingredients
  • 1 Rotisserie or oven roasted chicken deboned and shredded
  • ½ Cup Mayonnaise (for homemade Paleo Mayonnaise I use the recipe from Nom Nom Paleo or I purchase Sir Kensington's Mayonnaise)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon smoked Paprika
  • Half a head of Red Cabbage shredded or diced
  • 4 Carrots peeled and diced
  • 1 Green Apple diced
  • 2 Lemons juiced
Instructions
  1. Use 2 forks to shred and debone chicken into a large bowl.
  2. Add mayonnaise, salt & pepper, and paprika to bowl with chicken and stir to combine. Set aside.
  3. Dice cabbage and carrots. Add to bowl with chicken mixture.
  4. Dice apple. Add to bowl with chicken mixture. Pour lemon juice over apples.
  5. Stir until all ingredients are combined.
  6. Keep refrigerated until eaten.
Notes
Variations:
– Sub plain Mayonnaise for Sir Kensington’s Sriracha Mayonnaise
– Add Tessemae’s Hot Hot Sauce to taste to original recipe
– Use raisins instead of green apple and reduce to juice of one lemon
– Add 1 tablespoon dried parsley to original recipe
– Have green cabbage in your CSA box? Use green cabbage instead of red.
To oven roast your own chicken:
Easy and Amazing Roast Chicken from Everyday Paleo
Julia Child’s Classic Roast Chicken

 

And now for the disclaimer: The products above and linked to in this post are ones I used in my recipe. I did not receive any financial compensation or product for recommending any brand or product in this post. These are simply my personal recommendations and items I stock in my own kitchen. If you do purchase an item from the Amazon affiliate link located on the shop page, Nourish to Fuel receives a small compensation which helps to cover a portion of the cost for the site. 

Competition Eats: Sweet Potato Protein Puree

Sweet Potato Protein Puree

My husband and I had the opportunity to compete as a team in our first CrossFit throwdown, held at our box this past weekend. The turn out was huge, the box was packed, and it was a day long event. Competing in our first throwdown presented us with many challenges both physically and mentally. Despite placing 23 out of 24 in our division, I think we did amazing and I’m very proud of us. We pushed ourselves harder than we ever have before and gave it our all. One challenge, of a different sort, was what to pack food wise to last an entire day. We needed food that would be filling but not too filling, give us energy without the crash, and be easy to transport.

I haven’t jumped on the mason jar bandwagon. I don’t find it cute to drink out of a mason jar. I prefer a glass or the water bottle that travels with me everywhere. It’s an inside joke that every faculty member and student at the university and clinic I work for gets a mason jar for their smoothies when they start. I’ve just never subscribed to the trend. However, when in need of multiple transport devices for a day of throwdown eats, I bought mason jars. Now I see the appeal. I’m not going to start toting one around with me everywhere, but I get it. Along with all our gear the mason jars worked perfectly packed into a cooler hauled in our vehicle to the competition.

London Broil and Spiralized Veggies Mason Jar Salad

The food planning started with grilling, resting, and slicing London Broil and using that as a base to make 2 different quart sized mason jar salads. Salad one started with the London Broil on the bottom. I added blueberries, carrot, and radishes on top of the steak then a lettuce mixture, and small container of Tessemae’s raspberry vinaigrette on top. Salad two started with the same steak base layered with spiralized carrot, spiralized steamed zucchini zoodles, and spinach with a white balsamic vinegar, sesame seed, salt, pepper, olive oil, ginger, and coconut aminos dressing in a small container. When it came time to eat our salads, after all our events concluded, we poured the dressing on, put the lid back on the mason jar, shook it all up, and used the mason jar as the bowl.

In addition to the salads I packed peeled hard boiled eggs, Applegate organic roasted turkey breast deli slices, plenty of water, and coconut water. But the biggest life saver was the sweet potato protein puree. Pre and between events we needed something that was easy to digest, low volume, and that would not upset our stomachs. The last thing you want during any workout, competition or not, is an upset gurgling bloated stomach. The sweet potato protein puree works really well post regular workout as well as on competition day, as it can be made in advance and stored in the fridge. It can be eaten cold or warmed up. It’s an excellent combination of protein, fat, and carbs and it gave us energy, replenished our glycogen stores, and satiated us for the next workout.

 Sweet Potato Pumpkin Puree

Competition Eats: Sweet Potato Protein Puree

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Ingredients
  • 4 large Sweet Potatoes roasted and removed from their skins - To roast: coat washed and pierced with a knife sweet potatoes in coconut oil and roast in the oven at 400° degrees for 45 minutes to an hour
  • 1 can Pumpkin Puree
  • 4 scoops vanilla or chocolate Protein Powder
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup full fat Coconut Milk
  • 1 tablespoon Cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • Sea Salt and White Pepper, to taste
  • Optional 4 tablespoons Great Lakes Gelatin, Collagen Hydrolysate (important to use the gelatin in the green can for this as it is cold water soluble, the orange and red cans are not. See resources below for the gelatin, pumpkin, protein, and coconut milk I used in this recipe.)
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl puree roasted skinned sweet potatoes and pumpkin puree with butter and coconut milk with an immersion blender until combined. If you do not own an immersion blender: mash sweet potatoes, pumpkin puree, butter, and coconut milk with a potato masher or a fork.
  2. Stir cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and white pepper into sweet potato and pumpkin puree. Taste and adjust seasoning to your preference and size of your sweet potatoes. Larger sweet potatoes may need more butter, coconut milk, and seasoning.
  3. Stir protein powder and optional gelatin into mixture. Use immersion blender, potato masher, or fork to combine until smooth.
  4. Divide mixture into jars or containers. The size of your sweet potatoes will determine if you end up with a large batch of 6 to 7, 8 ounce mason jars or less.
  5. Store in refrigerator for up to one week. Serve cold or heated.

Resources:

SFH (Stronger Faster Healthier), Pure Whey Protein

Farmers Market, Organic Canned Pumpkin 

Great Lakes Gelatin, Collagen Hydrolysate 

Aroy-D, 100% Coconut Milk

Ball Heritage Collection Quart Jars with Lids and Bands, Green

Ball Jar Crystal Jelly Jars with Lids and Bands, 8-Ounce, Quilted

For more information about competition nutrition check out:

The Paleo Athlete Book 

The Predator-Diet Approach to Pre Competition Nutrition

And now for the disclaimer: The products above and linked to in this post are ones I used in my recipe or to pack for the competition. I did not receive any financial compensation or product for recommending any brand or product in this post. These are simply my personal recommendations and items I stock in my own kitchen. If you do purchase an item from the Amazon affiliate link, Nourish to Fuel receives a small compensation which helps to cover a portion of the cost for the site. 

 

 

Where’s the Kale? Bonus: Mushroom Chard Recipe

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5/One of my favorite grocery stores to shop at is regionally owned and operated in the North West with only 5 locations. The location I frequent has the biggest produce section I’ve ever seen in a grocery store, with local and organic options in addition to conventional produce. On a recent trip to stock up on dark leafy green and root veggies, I met a couple who where searching for the kale.

The husband was holding a familiar yet unknown vegetable to him trying to figure out what it was. Being a little more sociable than I normally am in public, I interjected to say it was kohlrabi. He mentioned they had eaten it when visiting another country, but never knew what it was exactly. The wife, who was seated in one of those electronic scooter carts, asked me if I knew where the kale was since she wasn’t sure which of the dark leafy greens it was. Having been known in my day to come home with cabbage instead of iceberg lettuce, I could relate. She kept reading about kale and they decided to try it. The couple wanted to start eating more vegetables and new foods in an effort to improve their health and lose weight.

That’s when I lit up. It’s not that I’m that ecstatic about kale. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some kale chips. But what really got me excited was the chance to talk about kale with this couple. If they could get excited about one food change maybe it would lead them to some of the same life altering positive changes eliminating processed foods did for me.

We talked about how to make kale chips. How to remove the stems. Trying different seasoning options. And giving it more than one shot, because often you have to try something multiple times before you like it. The wife saw me put rainbow chard in my cart. Which lead us to discuss my current favorite way to cook rainbow chard. At this point we were all happy just standing in the produce section of the grocery store talking about veggies.

Reading an article in the Harvard Business Review, regarding a study about positive work conversations versus negative conversations and the effects they have on the chemistry of the brain, reminded me again of the couple in the grocery store. Positive comments and discussions release oxytocin, which is a feel good hormone. The positive conversation the three of us had in the produce section must have released oxytocin for all of us since we all left the store with smiles on our faces and baskets full of dark leafy greens. Which is probably why sharing and talking about my favorite recipes makes me so happy. To keep the oxytocin flowing here is a recipe for mushrooms and rainbow (or red) chard.

Crimini Mushrooms

Mushroom Chard

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Ingredients
  • 1 cup sliced cremini or white button mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 bunch of red or rainbow chard with stems - diced (set stems aside, separate from chard leaves, with mushrooms)
  • 1 lemon
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Melt butter in heated skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add mushrooms and chard stems to melted butter.
  3. Sprinkle salt and pepper, to taste, onto mushrooms and chard stems.
  4. Saute for 2-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms are lightly brown. Add more butter if the thirsty mushrooms have soaked up all the butter in the skillet.
  5. Add chard leaves to skillet. Mix chard leaves with mushrooms and chard stems, stirring slowly until the leaves are wilted.
  6. Remove skillet from heat and place mushroom chard mixture on a plate.
  7. Squeeze juice from one lemon over the mushroom chard mixture. Enjoy!

 

Interested in Kale Chip recipes? Check out a few of my favorite recipes:

Baked Kale Chips from Nom Nom Paleo

Baked Nacho Kale Chips from Stupid Easy Paleo

Spicy Kale Chips from Eat Drink Paleo

Easy to Peel Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs

EggsCracked

Our family eats a lot of hard boiled eggs. Part of our weekly meal prep includes hard boiling 18 eggs every Sunday. We eat them for breakfast with a side of green leafy vegetables, alone as a snack, in a salad, and take them to go. Hard boiled eggs are quick, easy to make, and an excellent source of protein and nutrients such as B12, Vitamin D, Choline, Iron, Omega-3’s and more. Getting to the delicious nutrition can be a pain when your hard boiled eggs are hard to peel.

I’ve tried the baking soda in the water trick. Boiling older eggs trick. My eggs were still hard to peel. When half the egg ends up in pieces as you try in vain to peel the egg, that’s no good. It defeats the whole purpose of a quick easy snack if you cannot get to the protein and nutrients beyond the protective shell.

I finally found a simple trick for getting eggs to peel easily. Instead of placing eggs in cold water and bringing to a boil, boil a pot of water THEN add the eggs. Bingo! Easy to peel eggs at last! Fresh eggs or old eggs, it doesn’t matter as long as you bring the water to a boil first.

Easy to Peel Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Ingredients
  • 1 Dozen Eggs
  • Water - enough to cover the eggs when they are added to the pot
  • Salt
Instructions
  1. Add water and a teaspoon of salt to a pot and bring to a boil. The amount of water will vary depending on the size of the pot and how many eggs you are cooking. Use enough water to cover all your eggs once they have been added in step 2.
  2. Once water is at a rolling boil, add eggs one at a time with a slotted spoon.
  3. Allow water to come back to a boil for 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Turn off heat and cover pot, leave pot on burner for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove eggs from pot into a bowl of ice and water. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
  6. Eat or refrigerate for later.

 

Eggs
Hard boiled eggs, Remond Real Salt, and Paprika. Perfection.