Cantaloupe Lime Mint Popsicles

Cantaloupe Lime Mint Ice PopsYou’ve never seen anyone eat a popsicle so slowly until you’ve seen my little sister eat a popsicle. Being the oldest I occasionally got to stay up late and watch T.V. with Mom before I had to go to bed, especially in the summer time. Before I could hang out late watching cool T.V. my little sister was told to finish her popsicle, then go to bed. It would take her a lifetime to slowly and meticulously savor that popsicle until I just wanted to scream. I mean I had shows to watch. Cool cable shows that I only got to watch with Mom if my sister was in bed. Shows that you couldn’t watch whenever you wanted because you recorded them on your DVR. No, you had to watch it when it was on or you missed it. But there was my cute blonde haired blue eyed innocent looking sister eating her popsicle slower than a snail. It always tested my limited patience.

Not all my summertime popsicle memories involve getting frustrated with my sister, but they all involve her. Every summer time involved popsicle breaks of some kind in between hours spent playing outside together. We’d often take a break from playing outside to get into the garage fridge for an otter pop. Savoring the tongue staining coldness of that that sickly sweet pop with the mouth cutting plastic wrapper. Or we’d chase down the ice cream truck so I could get an ice cream sandwich and a cherry and pineapple swirl popsicle while my sister got the more expensive whatever crazy cartoon popsicle they had at the time.

Cantaloupe Lime Mint Ice PopsWhen we were older our popsicle tastes got a little more refined. The town we lived in at the time had a teeny tiny shop that sold paletas (Mexican ice pops) in every imaginable flavor and then some. I’m not even sure how we found the shop to begin with. It didn’t have much in the way of signage and it was off the main drive in an area we didn’t normally frequent. Every time I drove near that store, and sometimes I drove us there just to get a paleta, we’d go inside. I loved that place. One of my favorite flavors was a cantaloupe paleta which I used as inspiration for this recipe. My sister often ordered a watermelon flavor that will be featured in an upcoming post. Even though we had moved on to more sophisticated flavors, that sister of mine still ate her frozen treat so slowly I was always surprised it was still frozen by the time she got to the last bite. She still eats her frozen treats that way. In contrast, I inhale mine.

I used a popsicle mold from Williams and Sonoma to make the popsicles in this recipe. Amazon has a nearly identical mold that would work wonderfully. The trick to getting the pops out once frozen is to run warm water over the outside of the mold for a few seconds, then they pull right out. You could also use Zoku Classic Pop Molds or a Zoku Quick Pop Maker to make this recipe or any other popsicle recipe.

Cantaloupe Lime Mint Ice Pops

Prep time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 6 to 8 Ice Pops

Ingredients
  • 4 cups diced Cantaloupe
  • Zest of 2 Limes
  • Juice of 2 Limes
  • ½ Tablespoon Mint Leaves, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, fine ground
  • ½ cup cold Water
Instructions
  1. Place all prepped ingredients in a blender or food processor. Mix or pulse until cantaloupe is pureed. There will be some texture to the mixture, this is expected.
  2. If using a blender, pour directly into ice pop molds. If using a food processor transfer mixture into a bowl or measuring cup with a spout for easy pouring into ice pop molds.
  3. After filling molds place popsicle sticks into mixture and place in freezer for 4 to 6 hours.
  4. Remove from molds and enjoy.

FATface Skincare


 

Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice

I’ll fully admit I’m team white rice and team white potato. You cannot fool me into thinking cauliflower rice or pureed cauliflower tastes anything like a lovely bowl of white rice or a creamy side of buttery mashed potatoes. I’m not afraid of dense carbs timed right, especially since I lift heavy weights and need to refuel my glycogen stores so I can lift heavy weights again. But there are reasons to enjoy cauliflower rice at times, such as if you aren’t as active or your focus is on weight loss. It’s particularly easy to enjoy cauliflower rice since Trader Joe’s made it even easier with their new frozen riced cauliflower with only two ingredients, cauliflower and sea salt.

Another reason to have cauliflower rice is when you want a quick side dish to serve with dinner. This easy cauliflower fried rice is ready in 30 minutes, from prep to table. Perfect amount of time to cook a protein such as chicken or pork to serve along side this dish. Since it’s all vegetables, and some egg, you get a great serving of colorful vegetables to go along with your meal too.

I used Trader Joe’s Organic Riced Cauliflower to make this a super easy recipe. If you do not have a Trader Joe’s near you or prefer to rice your own cauliflower, no problem. Check out this post from Oh My Veggies on how to make cauliflower rice with a food processor or a box grater. You will need one and a half cups of cauliflower rice if you make your own. This will add about 10 to 15 minutes to the recipe time, but that’s okay especially if you plan ahead.

Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice

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Serves: 3 cups

Ingredients
  • 1 package (12 ounces or 1.5 cups if making your own cauli rice) Trader Joe's Organic Riced Cauliflower
  • 2 medium Carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
  • ½ bunch Green Onions, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons Ghee, plus ¼ teaspoon
  • 1 Tablespoon Red Boat Fish Sauce
  • 3 Tablespoons Coconut Aminos
  • 1 teaspoon ground Ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon Black Pepper
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
Instructions
  1. Prep all vegetables. Dice carrots and bell pepper. Chop green onions. Open package of Trader Joe's Organic Riced Cauliflower or rice your cauliflower.
  2. In a small bowl combine Fish Sauce, Coconut Aminos, Ginger, Red Pepper Flakes, Black Pepper, and pinch of salt. (Recipe Tip: Go easy on the salt since the packaged Cauliflower has salt added and the fish sauce is salty. A pinch really will do it, you can always add a little more salt at the end if you feel it is needed.)
  3. In a large skillet, melt 2 Tbsp Ghee over medium-high heat.
  4. Once ghee is melted, add riced Cauliflower, Carrots, and Red Bell Pepper. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. (Carrots and Red Bell Peppers will still have a slight crisp texture after 10 minutes, if you prefer them to be cooked further add an additional 5 minutes to the cook time.)
  5. While vegetables are cooking, in a separate skillet melt ¼ teaspoon of Ghee, and scramble both Eggs. Once eggs are cooked break them up into smaller pieces with spatula. Set aside.
  6. After cooking vegetables in skillet for 10 minutes, add scrambled Eggs, Green Onions (reserving some for garnish if desired), and sauce mixture. Stir together and let cook for another 1-2 minutes.
  7. Remove from skillet and serve.

 

Kasandrinos Olive Oil

 

Instant Pot Corned Beef

Instant Pot Corned BeefOh lovely March, when you arrive so does the corned beef! The Smithsonian online magazine has an excellent article describing how corned beef evolved from salted beef made with the ash of burnt seaweed to a dish Irish American immigrants shared with Jewish immigrants. The salt cured and slow cooked meat was a way to transform a tough cut of meat into tender flavorful corned beef. Add some potatoes and cabbage, cooked in the same liquid as the corned beef, and you have an easy tasty meal. Corned beef and cabbage is especially easy to enjoy today when you cook it in an Instant Pot.

While you can brine your own beef brisket, I prefer to save time and purchase already brined brisket. Most of the corned beef available in the grocery store is gluten free, unless a malt vinegar is used in the brine (not likely). Just be sure to check the package label and ingredients to be sure. You can also purchase corned beef from your local butcher and even Costco carries a grass-fed gluten free corned beef this year.

About those potatoes? The second half of the recipe below is for cabbage, carrots, and yes potatoes to be cooked in the same liquid the corned beef was cooked in. The corned beef and the vegetables cook at different times in the Instant Pot which is why this is a two step process, the good thing is corned beef tastes great even if it isn’t super hot just from the pot so don’t worry about it getting cold while you cook the vegetables. While potatoes may not fit into your personal diet template, they fit in ours, so I’ve included them. It is okay to exclude them and just make the cabbage and carrots to serve alongside your corned beef.

Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage

Rating 

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Two Step Process- After cooking the Corned Beef in your Instant Pot, remove the corned beef from the pot and strain the liquid with a slotted spoon to remove any large pieces of fat and herbs. Retain liquid in pot as it will be the same liquid you use to cook the second half of the recipe- Cabbage, Carrots, and Potatoes.
Ingredients
  • 3-4 pound Corned Beef Brisket
  • 3 cups Beef Broth
  • 3 cups Water
  • 1 Shallot, peeled and roughly chopped (substitute ¼ medium onion)
  • 3 Garlic Cloves, peeled and whole
  • 15 Whole Black Peppercorns
  • 9 Whole Allspice
  • 3 Bay Leaves
  • 5 sprigs Fresh Thyme
  • 6 small to medium Red Potatoes, rinsed and cut into eighths (optional)
  • 5 Carrots, peeled and cut into 2-3 inch pieces
  • 2 Shallots, minced (substitute ½ minced onion)
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon Diamond Kosher Salt
  • 1 head green Cabbage, cut into 8 wedges
Instructions
  1. Place corned beef brisket in Instant Pot fat side up. Add beef broth, water, rough chopped shallot, 3 garlic cloves, peppercorns, allspice, bay leaves, and thyme.
  2. Place lid on Instant Pot in locked position, making sure vent is sent to "sealing". Plug in Instant Pot.
  3. Press "Manual' and "+" to increase cooking time to 60 minutes at High Pressure.
  4. After a moment the display will turn to "On" while the pot heats up and pressure increases, once the pot has warmed up the display will start counting down.
  5. When finished cooking wait to open lid until the pressure float is down on it's own, or release pressure manually by moving vent to "venting". Unplug Instant Pot.
  6. Remove Corned Beef from pot, saving liquid for cabbage, carrots, and optional potatoes. Cover corned beef with aluminum foil and set aside.
  7. Strain cooking liquid with a slotted spoon to remove fat, bay leaves, and thyme.
  8. Place optional potatoes, carrots, shallots, garlic, and salt into cooking liquid then place cabbage on top.
  9. Place lid on Instant Pot in locked position, making sure vent is sent to "sealing". Plug in Instant Pot.
  10. Press "Manual' and "+" to increase cooking time to 10 minutes at High Pressure.
  11. After a moment the display will turn to "On" while the pot heats up and pressure increases, once the pot has warmed up the display will start counting down.
  12. When finished cooking wait to open lid until the pressure float is down on it's own, or release pressure manually by moving vent to "venting". Unplug Instant Pot.
  13. Remove vegetables from Instant Pot and serve with sliced corned beef.
  14. For Slow-Cooker Variation
  15. Place all ingredients except cabbage (corned beef, beef broth, water, 3 shallots, 5 cloves garlic, peppercorns, allspice, bay leaves, thyme, optional potatoes, and carrots) in large slow-cooker (7 quart or larger), and cook on high for 4 hours.
  16. Add cabbage on top of corned beef, cook for another hour on high.

 

Instant Pot Corned Beef

 


 

US Wellness Meats

Instant Pot Beef Bone Broth

Instant Pot Beef Bone Broth Recipe (with Crock-Pot variation) and Joint Support Post Injury (or to Prevent Injury)

Instant Pot Beef Bone BrothI recently got a refresher in anatomy and medical terminology when I had to retake a medical terminology course (my previous credit was to old to count) and when I took an anatomy and physiology course. I learned all about shoulder joints and muscles such as the acromioclavicular joint, the supraspinatus muscle, and trapezius muscle. I got a refresher in all the gluteus muscles (gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus). I also got to reiterate how important joint health is for prevention and treatment of injuries.

While I’ll share with you below what you can do to prevent or treat an injury, it is always best to seek the care of your physician before starting any treatment or supplements as they may be contraindicated for you based on your personal medical history. In other words don’t do what I say just because I said it, check with your doctor first.

With the disclaimer out of the way, here’s what I recommend doing and why:

  • Triple Strength Glucosamine Chondroitin MSM (Shellfish-Free) Tablets

    • Shellfish free only because I personally am allergic to shellfish, and glucosamine supplements are often made with the shells of shellfish.
    • Glucosamine is used by the body, along with other chemicals, to build tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and the fluid surrounding joints. Taking glucosamine is thought to help support this process. While chondroitin may reduce pain and inflammation. In combination they promote and support joint health and movement.
  • Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Blend
    • Regular fish oil is questionable, to me, because it is so highly processed the health benefits are often lost by the time the finished product is reached. Which is why I prefer fermented cod liver oil as the manufacturing process is less damaging to the Omega-3 oils and vitamins in the oil. There are numerous benefits to taking fermented cod liver oil (see this article by Katie the Wellness Mama or this article by Diane Sanfilippo for more information) but I recommend taking it specifically to reduce joint pain, stiffness, and inflammation.
  • Collagen
    • Collagen is a protein made from the amino-acids Glycine, Proline, Hydroxyproline and Arginine. Approximately 30% of the body’s protein consists of collagen. It can be located in the bones, tendons, ligaments, muscles, and connective tissue of the body and in the skin, hair, and nails. It helps gives strength and protects the body. As we age, collagen production naturally slows down resulting in loss of skin elasticity, joint stiffness, tendons and ligaments being less elastic and more. Following Hippocrates wisdom of “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” I already supplement my diet with collagen because of it’s numerous benefits (hello wrinkle reduction/prevention). Post injury I recommend increasing your intake with the following:
      • Collagen Hydrolysate, Great Lakes Gelatin
        • Collagen Hydrolysate is cold water soluble so it does not gel up like other gelatin. This makes it great to add to smoothies, guacamole (yes, I do this), puddings, into your shaker bottle with post work-out protein powder, to give bone broth an extra gelatin kick, etc. where you don’t want the jello like consistency. I add this to my morning coffee along with ghee, maca powder, bulletproof XCT oil, and coconut milk as a preventative measure.
      • Unflavored Kosher Gelatin, Great Lake Gelatin
      • Bone Broth Instant Pot Beef Bone Broth

        • Bone broth is having a shining moment with a walk up bone broth window in New York and numerous articles (here’s just one) and studies purporting it’s many health benefits. I’ve always loved how happy, warm, and nourished my tummy feels after having soup or stew made with real bone broth but it turns out I was actually getting health benefits from the broth. Bone broth helps in healing my gut, supporting my joints, boosting my immune system, and strengthening my bones too. Drinking a cup of bone broth a day is a great way to take advantage of the many benefits of bone broth. Other than Bare Bones Broth there isn’t a good way to take advantage of the benefits of bone broth unless you make homemade because commercial bone broth doesn’t have the same nutrients. Which thanks to the Instant Pot only take just over 2 hours total to make at home (see recipe below), although you can also make bone broth in a crock-pot or on the stove.
  • Natural Eggshell Membrane (NEM), by Natural Factors
    • NEM contains naturally occurring glycosaminoglycans including chondroitin and hyaluronic acid, NEM also contains collagen and other beneficial proteins for joint health and flexibility.
    • Note this supplement does contain Shellfish, so avoid if you have an allergy.

That’s what I recommend doing to help support and heal your body. It is also helpful to prevent injury by giving your joints the best nutrients so they can be strong to prevent minor injuries.

Instant Pot Beef Bone Broth

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

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Serves: 6-8 cups

Ingredients
  • 3 pounds Beef Soup Bones (including two knuckle bones)
  • 4 large Carrots, washed and cut in half
  • 3 stalks Celery, washed and cut in half
  • 1 medium Onion, cut into quarters
  • 6 cloves Garlic, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Diamond, or other brand, Kosher Salt
  • 6-8 cups filtered Water, do not fill past safe fill line on Instant Pot
  • Variations:
  • Add to recipe above
  • Pho Inspired: 1 Tablespoon Fish Sauce and 6 slices of peeled fresh ginger
  • Herbed broth: Add sprigs of fresh Thyme, Rosemary, and Parsley - no need to chop just add as many or as little as your taste prefers
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in Instant Pot
  2. Put lid on and turn to closed (locked) position
  3. Make sure vent is set to "Sealing"
  4. Plug in Instant Pot
  5. Press "Soup" setting
  6. Click - (minus) time button once to reach 120 minutes
  7. After a moment the display will change to On while the Instant Pot heats up. Once the pot has warmed up the display will start counting down
  8. When finished cooking turn off or leave on Warm cycle while waiting for pressure to release, when pressure float is down the lid can be opened safely
  9. Remove bones and vegetables with a slotted spoon
  10. Strain broth through a mesh strainer
  11. Enjoy! Use for soups, to drink, to freeze for later use in storage containers or using a silicone mold freeze individual portions for later use
  12. Crock Pot and Slow Cooker Variation
  13. Add all ingredients to Crock Pot- cook on low for 16 to 24 hours. The longer the better.

 

 

Braised Cranberry Apple Cabbage

Braised Cranberry Apple CabbagePumpkin most often gets all the glory for fall flavors, but there are other great seasonal goodies this time of year that shouldn’t be overlooked. Pomegranates, apples, cranberries, and squashes (not just pumpkin – how about delicata, butternut, and acorn to name a few) are some of my favorites. I’m all for pumpkin everything, however after I get that out of my system at the beginning of the season, I turn to my other favorites. That’s where the inspiration for this recipe, Braised Cranberry Apple Cabbage, came from. Cranberries and apples with cabbage, braised in apple cider, chicken stock, and apple cider vinegar results in a tangy and slightly sweet side dish. Bonus points for being an easy one pot dish too!

While I cooked the cabbage on the stove in a large pot over low heat for several hours, this recipe could just as easily have gone in the crockpot on low for 5 to 6 hours. The cooking liquid will increase about an hour into the cooking time, since the cabbage releases water as it cooks down. Be sure to allow space in the pot or crockpot for the extra liquid. This is why you don’t need to worry about not covering all the vegetables and fruit with liquid before you start cooking, it’ll take care of itself.

Braised Cranberry Apple Cabbage is great served along side simple baked chicken or roasted turkey. It would also make a great addition to a Thanksgiving table. We ate our cabbage mixed with browned ground beef, for a simple one bowl dinner. The girls really enjoyed this side dish as well, especially the apples and cranberries. If using half a large head of cabbage, the other half can be used to make Rotisserie Chicken and Cabbage Salad for lunches later in the week. The leftover apple cider is great warmed up with cinnamon to drink by a warm fire.

Note: If you cannot find plain non-alcoholic apple cider in the store, spiced apple cider (with mulling spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg) will work in it’s place. Just omit the cinnamon in the recipe. You may also use unfiltered apple juice or if all else fails plain 100% not from concentrate apple juice works as well.

Braised Cranberry Apple Cabbage

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Ingredients
  • ½ large head Purple Cabbage, sliced (or 1 medium Purple Cabbage)
  • 2 cups Cranberries
  • 2 Apples, cored and sliced
  • 1 medium Onion, sliced
  • 2 cups Apple Cider
  • 1 cup Chicken Stock/Broth
  • ¼ cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Juice of 2 Lemons
  • 1 tablespoon Cinnamon
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a large pot, or crockpot. Liquid will not cover all ingredients, this is to allow space in the pot for the liquid in the cabbage to release as recipe cooks.
  2. Stir carefully, to not break cranberries, to combine.
  3. If cooking on stovetop in a pot: cook on low heat for 3-4 hours stirring occasionally.
  4. If cooking in a crockpot: cook on low for 5-6 hours.
  5. Strain with a slotted spoon before serving.