Sunday, March 23, 2014

Weekend Cooking 3/23

Each weekend, Beth Fish Reads hosts Weekend Cooking.  This is perfect for me since I love food and cooking almost as much as I love books!

As I explained last month, we recently started eating a Paleo diet for health reasons. It is going well so far - my son and I are both feeling better, and my husband (who has no health problems!) has more energy and drive than he's had in decades. I am still learning and trying to understand more about why this type of diet is good for us.

Most important to me is that we don't sacrifice flavor or feel deprived. I have been mostly using regular recipes so far and making minor adjustments where needed to fit the Paleo diet. I was away on a mini retreat by myself for a couple of days this week, but we enjoyed some tasty dinners when I returned.

As I've mentioned before, many of our meals now fit into a meat or fish plus two veggie sides model - this is really not all that different from a traditional dinner of meat or fish with one veggie and a starch. So, one night, I made Roasted Pacific Cod with Lemons and Olives, a recipe I cut out of Real Simple magazine a while back. We had roasted asparagus and steamed broccoli with it. Very tasty!

We had a busy afternoon on Friday, with an appointment at 4 pm, so I needed a good crockpot recipe. I turned to my favorite crockpot cookbook, Cooking Light Slow Cooker Tonight, and looked for something that could easily be adjusted for Paleo. I settled on a dish we tried last year and loved, Chinese Pork Tenderloin with Garlic Sauced Noodles (sorry this one isn't online - you'll have to buy the cookbook to get it!) Yes, a noodle dish without the noodles might sound a bit strange, but the flavors in this meal are vibrant and full, so I knew it could stand on its own without the pasta. I added extra veggies (as is my habit!) to give it more volume about an hour before it was finished - I doubled the carrots and added a head of napa cabbage, thinly sliced (the recipe calls for raw carrots but my son is allergic to those and can only eat them cooked). I did cook up a small serving of whole wheat spaghetti for my younger son (who has no dietary restrictions) and mixed his with the noodles, as directed, but my husband and I just ate ours as is, and it was delicious. Though the sauce and mix of pork and veggies in this dish is good, the real stars are the fresh ingredients added at the end - cilantro, lime juice, and chopped peanuts (or cashews or sunflower seeds for Paleo). Delicious!

And tonight, with my college son home for his weekly Sunday dinner, we will have his favorite, Americana Pot Roast. The only adjustment I need to make for him is to leave out the potatoes - I am substituting some turnips instead. This is a really flavorful version of pot roast that we all love, a family favorite.

I hope you have also enjoyed some fun cooking and delicious foods this week!


  1. You have adjusted well to your changing diets. All your dishes sound yummy. I have a hankering for a roast too, and will making lamb later in the week.

  2. I have got to find a copy of that Cooking Light Crock Pot Cookbook.

  3. That's fantastic you are finding it not terribly difficult to move into a more paleo diet/lifestyle. I've been on again/off again for about 3 months and can definitely tell a big difference when I'm on again! Hope this helps bring better all-around health to your family!

  4. You are making such flavorful dishes despite your diet restrictions. I love Cooking Light and my slow cooker, I really should get that cookbook! Hope you link up with my #SmallVictoriesSunday linky this week.

  5. So glad you linked this up with Small Victories Sunday! pinning and sharing!