Shrimp and Asparagus (AIP Friendly)

Simple easy AIP compliant dinner. Shrimp and asparagus (both on sale and both with coupons!) sauteed with onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, basil, fresh lemon, and a oilve oil/coconut oil mixture. #aipdiet #simplecooking  #healthyeating #dinnertime #blog | September 21, 2017 at 08:23PM

Simple easy AIP compliant dinner. Shrimp and asparagus (both on sale and both with coupons!) sauteed with onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, basil, fresh lemon, and a oilve oil/coconut oil mixture. #aipdiet #simplecooking #healthyeating #dinnertime #blog

For this dish I used 1 small bag of large raw frozen shrimp (Shelled) and 1 bag of microwavable frozen asparagus.

Directions:

Microwave frozen asparagus for 1/2 the  cook time stated on the package. Drizzle pan with olive oil and coconut oil.  Add frozen shrimp (do not defrost) and partially cooked asparagus to the pan.  Season with 1/2 large lemon (squeezed) and garlic powder, onion powder, and salt – to taste.   Cook until shrimp are done.

Easy, Quick, Delicious, Healthy.

*Nut Free, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free, Nightshade Free, Sugar Free – AIP Compliant*

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Breakfast for Dinner and Tales of a Helpful Toddler

Last night was the first night in a long time that I cooked dinner for my family.  I love to cook and I normally cook quite often, but Michael had been out of town for a bit and then my Mother-in-Law had a heart attack (more about that in another post) and as a result we have been back and forth to Little Rock (to visit the hospital) and Michael has been staying at the hospital a lot too.

Michael was home last night and I wanted to cook, but I had forgotten to set anything out to defrost.  I was left to ponder what I could fix for dinner fairly easily and with what I had on hand and ready to cook.

I decided on Breakfast for dinner –  a fairly regular meal at our house.  I thought about what I would include and decided on gluten-free biscuits, scrambled eggs, and sausage links.  Now generally Michael prefers bacon or at least sausage patties, but all I had was sausage links, so he was just going to have to make do with them.

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The kitchen quickly becomes a disaster area when I am cooking!

Genevieve saw me in the kitchen and wanted to help.  She climbed up in her learning tower (we found this at a Rhea Lana’s sale for so cheap!), and asked to help me.  She first pointed to the sausages and told me that she wanted to eat the “hot dog,” which was so cute!  I told her that they were sausages and she then told me that she wanted to eat the sausages, but I told her they had to cook first (much to her disappointment).  She then helped me cute the biscuits.  When I started breaking the eggs to scramble them, she asked if she could crack the eggs.  I wouldn’t let her crack the eggs because I didnt want to fish all the shells out.  She got so made at me that she ran out of the kitchen saying that she was going to go “tell daddy that you are doing it wrong!”

When dinner was finished cooking, we all sat down to the table to eat.  It was such a treat for us all to eat dinner together, since it had been so long.

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I ate my biscuits with honey…yum!

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Want to know how to make these amazing gluten-free biscuits?  I use this recipe from Maebell’s blog.  It is the best gluten-free biscuit recipe I have found.  I generally tweak it by adding 1/2 teaspoon of xanthan gum, cooking in a glass 9×13 casserole dish coated with melted butter, and I cook them a bit longer – 15 to 20 minutes (finishing with the broil setting to get a golden color on top).

Dinnertime: 01/18/2016

Tonight’s dinner was a simple one, but it was very difficult to get cooked because Michael didn’t get home until late and Genevieve refused to let me set her down. She also happened to be super cranky in the general nothing makes me gapoy, let me randomly cry regardless of what you do kind of way.

I picked this dinner because it was simple since I knew Michael would be late and I would have Genevieve by myself. …. even so, I nearly gave up on it several times because evidently it wasn’t simple enough!

Dinner: Stir fried cabbage with sausage, the remaining sausage pan fried on the griddle, and brown rice with quinoa.

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My plate:

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Genevieve’s plate:

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Genevieve ate great! Better than she has eaten in a while! She refused the cabbage  (I wasn’t surprised), but ate all her rice and most of her sausage. She also shared Michael’s plate with him when he got home.

Chicken Corn Chowder

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Ingredients:

16 Oz chicken broth
2 chicken breasts (cooked and chopped )
10 Oz frozen corn
1 pint heavy cream
1/2 stick of butter
1/2 an onion
1/2 a bell pepper
2 Tablespoons garlic
Rosemary, thyme, dalt, and pepper to taste
Shredded cheddar – optional

Directions:

Sautee garlic, onion, and bell pepper in onion until cooked through.

Add corn and chicken broth and cook on Medium until corn is defrosted and cooked. Add chicken and continue to cook for 20 min. Add seasonings as desired.

Add cream, stir, and cover. Simmer on low for 30 minutes.  Stir frequently to prevent burning or sticking. Add cornstarch if thickening is desired.

Serve topped with shredded cheese

Toddler Muffins with Puree

Trying something new, so we will see how this turns out…

Toddler Muffins w/Puree

Dry Ingredients:
1/2 Cup flour
1/2 Cup Baby Oatmeal
1/4 Cup Coconut Flour
1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Wet Ingredients:
3 cubes apple puree (defrosted) -see posts on homemade babyfood
2 cubes carrot puree (defrosted) -see posts on homemade babyfood
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 Cup finely shredded squash
2 egg yokes

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Bake in a greased standard size muffin tin. I used silicone muffin liners and filled them with 2 scoops of a cookie scoop.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Yields: 8 Muffins.

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Note: you should be able to replace the carrot puree with any puree you like.

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Muffins were a success! She loves them#

My inspiration for this recipe came from My Nearest and Dearest.

Parmesan Crusted Pork Chop

Tonight I tried something new.  I created a gluten free Parmesan crusted pork chop (boneless).  It was super delicious, although I think the pork was a little tough for Genevieve (she normally loves meat, but wasnt a big fan tonight)!

I served this with Annie’s Gluten Free Mac and Cheese (the frozen kind) and sauteed zucchini.

I think the only thing I would change about this dish is that next time I will use a thinner pork chop.  The pork chops I bought were really thick and they were hard to cook on the stove without burning the breading.

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Recipe for Gluten Free Parmesan Crusted Pork Chop (boneless):

Ingredients:

Ian’s Gluten Free Panko Breadcrumbs

4 Pork Chops

2 eggs – beaten

1 Cup Parmesan Cheese

2 Tablespoons Italian Seasoning

Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Pepper, and Salt to taste

Peanut Oil

 

Directions:

Put the breadcrumbs, cheese, and egg into separate bowls.  Add seasoning as desired to both sides of the meat and into the breadcrumbs. I added salt and pepper directly to the meat and added the garlic powder, onion powder, and Italian seasoning to the breadcrumbs. Dredge and press the meat into the cheese, then the egg, and finally the breadcrumbs.  Make sure that during each step the meat is well covered.  Heat oil in a skillet and then fry the meat until brown and then flip.  Cook it until it reaches 160 degrees in the thickest portion of the meat.   Let cool and then serve.

A Gluten Free Dinner – Tilapia and Zucchini

Tilapia, Sushi Rice, and Zucchini with Sun Dried Tomatoes
Serves 2 (plus extra rice)
389 Calories per service

Sushi Rice (Village Harvest Koshihikari sushi rice) – Serving size is 1 Cup cooked rice

Rinse 1 cup dry rice and soak in 1 1/4 cup of cold water for 30 minutes.
Add 1/4 cup of chicken broth and some Mrs. Dash seasoning
Simmer for 20 minutes (adding liquid as needed)

Tilapia and Zucchini with Sun Dried Tomatoes – Serving size is half of the contents of the skillet

Heat 1 teaspoon of EVOO in a nonstick skillet.
Add 2 tilapia frozen filets (I use the Sams Club ones).
Cut 1 small zucchini in half lengthwise and then cut into 1″ pieces and add to the skillet.
Add 2 tablespoons chopped garlic.
Toss in  1/4 cup of sun dried tomatoes.
Flip tilapia over after a minutes or two and season with Mrs. Dash.
Add 1/4 cup chicken broth and cover.
Cook 5 to 10 minutes based on thickness of fish (check for doneness).
Season with salt and pepper.

Hashimoto’s and going Gluten Free

In March of 2012 I was in a car accident that caused me to my left wrist (my dominant hand).  I suffered a lot of pain, shock, panic attacks, and gained back all the weight I had lost in 2011 (25lbs).

 In May of 2012 I was diagnosed with low thyroid function by my GP.  My most obvious symptom was chronic exhaustion, but looking back I had dry skin, dandruff, trouble focusing, and (after reviewing medical records a year later) reduc.d vision.

I was getting married in October of 2012, but I kept gaining weight, no matter what I ate or did.  It was so frustrating.  By the time we got married I had gained 40 lbs from the time I bought my wedding dress in January.  I still get sad every time I think about it, because it barely fit and it wasnt nearly as perfect looking on my oversized body.  Thats what happens when you go from a size 8 to a size 12.

Picture 1 is the day I bought my dress in January 2012 and Picture 2 is my wedding day in October 2012

After working with my GP for a year, I still didn’t’ feel like myself.  I didn’t feel like I needed 20 hours of sleep in a 24 hour day anymore, but I was still exhausted all the time and I was still gaining weight.  In March of 2013 I started seeing an Endocrinologist.  He ran some tests and did a sonogram of my thyroid and diagnosed me with Hashimoto’s.  Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune disease in which your body attacks your thyroid, causing low thyroid function (although some Hashi’s patients fluctuate from hypo to hyper).

I am now taking Levothyroxine at .150 micrograms 6 days a week.  I still have hypothyroid symptoms, but the Endo says my bloodwork is “in the normal range.”

I have talked to a lot of people who have thyroid problems and many say that they never felt “right” even after years of medication.  I have talked to people who have weight problems all their lives.  I have read and read and read (I am a librarian after all) and I have learned alot, but mostly I have learned that thyroid patients are all different and Endos are all different, so it takes a lot of work to find the right lifestyle balance and a doctor that will work with you for optimal results.

My current doctor, Dr. Boehm, is not my ideal doctor.  I have seen him twice and I know I need to look for someone else to treat me.  I keep gaining weight and he refuses to discuss my weight, diet, and health with me.

Since my wedding in October I have gone up another clothing size and I now wear a size 14.  I am unhappy at my size and I have started using MyFitnessPal to watch my calories and try to lose weight.  I know it will be a struggle.

I have read that some Hashi’s patients need to take in significantly fewer calories than the standard person working at weight loss and need to exercise 3 times as much for similar results as a non-Hashi’s patient (like everything, some people disagree).  Lots of what I have read focuses on the importance of a gluten free diet for thyroid patients.

I started working towards a gluten free diet on May 28th and to date have only miss-stepped 3 times that I know of.  So far the hardest part has been the lack of cakes and cookies (which I don’t need anyway, but I am addicted too) and easy to prepare meals without having to cook from scratch.  I did make a trip to Little Rock (45 min from my home) to shop at a health food store and I was able to pick up a few ready to eat items.

This is going to be an interesting journey…

Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Pasta

Buffalo Chicken Pasta
Ingredients: 
2lbs chicken – cut in small chunks
2 jars Alfredo sauce (I used Bertolli)
1lb penne (use corn penne for gluten free)
1/4 cup hidden valley ranch dressing
1 large bell pepper
1/2 large onion
3 Tbs chopped garlic
2 cups chopped tomatoes
1/2 jar of Buffalo sauce (I used Frank’s)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 parmesan cheese
1/2 pkg of cream cheese
Pepper and salt to taste
Directions:
1.) Saute onion, bell pepper, garlic, and chicken in the olive oil.
2.) When chicken is cooked through boil pasta in separate pot.  
3.) While pasta is cooking, add alfredo sauce, cream cheese, and ranch dressing to chicken mixture and simmer.  Add pepper and salt to taste.
4.) When pasta is finished, drain and add to sauce mixture.
5.) Add buffalo sauce (I use 1/2 a jar, but you can use as little or as much as you like) and cook for 5 minutes.  
6.) Add the parmesan cheese before serving.
*Note: Our family loves this recipe for dinner!  The guys fight over the leftovers.  If needed you can cut this recipe in half, but it all gets eaten at our house!