All Posts Tagged ‘toddler approved

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Shepherd’s Pie

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I think Shepherd’s Pie is one of the ultimate comfort foods. It reminds me of my childhood and especially church potlucks. The mashed potatoes were of course the best part, right?

I’ve tried a few paleo versions of Shepherd’s Pie and finally tweaked enough until I’ve got one that I’ll stick with. The main difference for me is in preparing the mashed cauliflower (faux mashed potatoes). Most recipes call for you to steam the cauliflower before mashing it, but I always find that this makes mine too runny and not close enough to the texture of real mashed potatoes. This time I tried roasting the cauliflower instead and the texture was perfect!

My little guy was shoving this into his mouth by the messy handful and Charley managed to swallow five bites, so I am definitely considering this a picky toddler approved recipe. (She did, however, refer to it as the Pie of Bravery, and suggested that maybe next time I should call Nana and ask for her recipe).

Ingredients:

-1-2 tbsp coconut oil

-2 lbs ground beef

-1 onion, diced

-3 cloves of garlic, minced

-3 large carrots, diced (about 1 cup)

-1 head of broccoli, chopped into small pieces

-3 tbsp tomato paste

-3 tsp coconut aminos

-2 tsp rosemary

-2 tsp thyme

-1.5 tsp paprika, divided

-1 cup beef broth

-salt and pepper to taste

-1 large head of cauliflower or 2 small heads

Directions:

1) Heat a large pan over medium heat and add coconut oil.

2) Throw in your onions, garlic, carrots and broccoli and fry for approximately 5 mins or until they begin to soften.

3) Crumble your meat into the pan, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 5-10 minutes or until browned and cooked through. (My pan isn’t very large, so I actually had to scoop out some of the vegetables to make enough space for the meat to cook evenly. Once the meat was cooked through, I add the vegetables back in).

4) While the meat is cooking, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Chop or slice your cauliflower (I slice the cauliflower into about 1 cm thickness so it will roast faster) and spread it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and olive oil or coconut oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. For a little extra kick you could sprinkle with some minced garlic as well.  Roast at 400 degrees for approximately 25 minutes or until the cauliflower just begins to brown. Remove when roasted but leave the oven set at 400 degrees.

roastedcauli

5) Once the meat is cooked through and is no longer pink, add your beef broth, tomato paste, coconut aminos, rosemary, thyme and 1tsp of paprika. Taste and add salt if necessary.

6) Bring the mixture to a boil and then let it simmer while some of the excess liquid dissolves and the flavours meld.

7) While the meat and vegetables are simmering, puree your roasted cauliflower in your food processor, Vitamix, or blender. I did not need to add any liquid to mine, but if it seems to dry then add some bone broth, water, or coconut milk, just a tablespoon at a time. I prefer it on the dry, fluffy side.

8) Remove your meat and vegetable mixture from the pan and press it into a 9×11 baking dish. Spread the mashed cauliflower on top, and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 tsp of paprika.

9) Bake it for about 25 minutes or until the top is nice and browned. Enjoy!

*This recipe is paleo and Whole30 approved.

shepherdspie

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Pumpkin Muffins with Zucchini and Banana

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Fall is finally here. I know I’m supposed to be super excited about the leaves falling, cool mornings, and pumpkin spice lattes, but I’m just not there yet. I’m still mourning the loss of the hot sun and late summer nights. My kids however, have fully embraced everything pumpkin. Our local market already has pumpkins for sale and Charley got so excited and begged to take one home. We named it George, and then she helped me cut it up and scoop out the ‘guts’. After baking and pureeing the flesh, we made some of it into these delicious muffins and the rest went into Xavier’s morning oatmeal.

I find paleo baking to be pretty tricky. I usually prefer to use almond flour rather than coconut flour, but Charley’s preschool is completely nut free so I’m having to come up with some new recipes for her. Be aware that the texture of these muffins can not be compared to regular muffins made with wheat flour. Paleo baking is just different, and that’s okay.

Ingredients:

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 cup shredded zucchini

1 overripe banana

5 eggs

6 tbsp melted grass fed butter (or coconut oil)

1/8-1/4 cup of raw, organic honey (or maple syrup)

1 tsp vanilla

1.5 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

3/4 cup coconut flour

Directions:

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit.

2) Combine all wet ingredients in a bowl and mix well. I used an electric mixer on low to really hide the zucchini and banana as much as possible for my kids but you could mix by hand with no problems.

3) Combine all dry ingredients in a separate bowl and mix well.

4) Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet mix, stirring to combine as you go until well blended.

5) Spoon muffin batter into lined or greased muffin pan and bake for 30-40 minutes or until done.

Charley really wanted to sprinkle some mini chocolate chips on top of the muffins before baking so we did that this time (seen in photo). Not necessary of course, but there are much worse things she could be eating, and if those few chocolate chips get her to eat pumpkin, zucchini and banana, then I consider that a parenting win.

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Almond Zucchini Muffins

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We are loving zucchini season! We’ve been using it in everything we can. It doesn’t have a strong flavour so I’ve been able to hide it in some foods for my picky kids to eat. A friend turned me on to Danielle Walker’s Almond Flour Zucchini Bread recipe from Against All Grain and with just a couple of tweaks, Charley and I made it into our own muffins. I had made them to take camping with us the following day but the whole dozen were eaten before we left in the morning!¬†

muffin2

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour

2 tsp Epicure’s Fruit Crumble spice (cinnamon would work well here also, I just happened to be out of it)

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

3 tbsp hazelnut butter (any nut butter will work)

3 tbsp raw honey

3 eggs, beaten

1 ripe banana

1 cup shredded zucchini

1/3 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips (optional)

Directions

1) Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

2) Combine all your dry ingredients in a small mixing bowl.

3) Place the wet ingredients in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes.

4) Add the zucchini and beat until combined.

5) Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, keeping the mixer going.

6) Add the chocolate chips and mix until combined.

7) Pour into lined muffin tins and bake for approximately 30 minutes.

8) Let cool before slicing in half and slathering with grass fed butter. Enjoy!