Whole Roasted Chicken

Whole Roasted Chicken

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Not going to lie… I have had this recipe sitting in my blog for weeks now.  This was the last meal that I made with my mom before she passed.  My mom used to joke when we would cook together that I was the cook and she was the cleaner.  She would walk around the kitchen following me as I cooked, cleaning. I think that this recipe holds a lot of sentimental feelings and it was hard for me to post it.  It was like reliving the last few weeks with her before we found out she had cancer and was in a coma. All the good memories that now are mixed with the bad.  Sometimes those bad memories out weigh the good ones. It takes on a darker meaning to the point of wanting it just to stop. So, I have to just put one foot in front of the other. Find joy in the memories of my beautiful mother and the time we spent together. To let the bad memories have a space but not consume my life.

Here is the original post… hope you enjoy xo

I love roasting chicken!!! It is easier than you think and it is one of those meals that you can just put in the oven and leave for a couple hours. I like to pair mine with veggies that roast with the chicken in the oven. It is a great meal for a group of people or a Sunday dinner.

 

What You Need:

Whole Chicken (antibiotic free, no hormone chicken)

Whole Onion

Two Lemons (cut in quarters)

Mushrooms (cut in half and save for later)

6 Large Carrots, sliced long way

Butter

Fresh Herb Mix for Poultry

Salt and Pepper

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What To Do:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place your chicken in a roasting pan. Run your fingers under the chicken skin to loosen it from the meat. Under the skin, rub a generous amount of butter on the meat.

Take the onion and place inside the cavity as well as one half of the lemon. Squeeze the rest of the lemons on top of the chicken and sprinkle salt and pepper all over. Place the carrots around the chicken.

Take half the fresh poultry seasoning and place all over the top of the chicken. Divide the other half and put one part into the cavity of the chicken and the other part around the carrots. Take the squeezed lemons and place with carrots.

Cook for an hour and then add the mushrooms around the chicken. Total cooking time is typically about 20 minutes per pound. The internal temperature of the chicken should be at least 185 degrees F.

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“Takeout” Style Teriyaki Chicken and Broccoli

“Takeout” Style Teriyaki Chicken and Broccoli

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Sometimes I have cravings for Chinese takeout but being a Celiac and having many food allergies, Chinese really isn’t an option. This is my version of Teriyaki Chicken and Broccoli. I paired it with white rice but using brown rice is just as good.

 

What You Need:

1 Chicken Breast, cut into cubes (sprinkled with pepper)

Sesame Oil

1/4 cup Brown Sugar

1/4 cup Braggs Liquid Aminos

1/8 cup Water

2 tablespoons Rice Wine Vinegar

2 Garlic Cloves, chopped

1 teaspoon Fresh Ginger, chopped

1/2-1 tablespoon Cornstarch

2 Heads of Broccoli, chopped

Rice

What To Do:

In a bowl, prep your sauce. Mix together brown sugar, Liquid Aminos, water, rice wine vinegar, garlic, ginger and cornstarch.

Cook the rice according to the directions. While the rice is cooking, in a sauté pan, drizzle a light coating of sesame oil. Be careful! This oil is powerful! Add in chicken pieces and cook.

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In a separate pan, drizzle a little bit of sesame oil and add in broccoli. Mix around occasionally and when the broccoli starts to get soft, take it off of the heat. Add the broccoli to the chicken. Pour in the sauce and let the flavors incorporate.

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The sauce will start to thicken up. Once the sauce is your desired consistency, pair it with the rice and enjoy!

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Tofu Stir Fry

Tofu Stir Fry

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Today’s recipe is all about the wonderful health benefits of Tofu! Tofu is such a versatile ingredient because it takes on the flavors of what it is seasoned with. In the past, I have shared how to make Tofu Croutons (go under Meatless Monday or Vegetables).

 

I love tofu! It is a great source of protein and it contains all eight amino acids. Amino acids are important because 20 percent of our bodies are made of protein. Amino acids carry out important functions in your body. They play a huge part in carrying the transport and storing of nutrients, help repair tissues and muscles, and helps remove excess waste from our metabolism.

 

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What You Need:

Brown Rice (I used Rice in a Bag that I cooked)

Firm Tofu (1/2 package)

Mushrooms (chopped)

Frozen Stir Fry Vegetables (1/2 bag)

1/3 Cup Liquid Aminos

1/4 Cup Rice Vinegar

1/4 Cup + some for cooking Sesame Seed Oil

1 Teaspoon Chopped Dry Garlic

1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Dry Ginger

1/2 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper (less if you would like)

Salt and Pepper

Tofu Spice Rub:

1/8 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder, Dry Ginger, Crushed Red Pepper, Salt, and Pepper

What To Do:

After chopping the mushrooms, add them to a sauté pan with a drizzle of sesame seed oil. Add some salt and pepper.

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While the mushrooms are cooking, drain the tofu and wrap in a bunch of paper towels. You want to try to get out as much moisture as possible. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes.

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Unwrap the tofu and carefully slice in chucks. Rub the Tofu with the Spice Rub and let it sit until it is time to add it to the stir-fry.

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When the mushrooms are done cooking, put them in a bowl, and cook the stir-fry vegetables (since they are frozen, you won’t need to add any oil). When they are cooked, transfer them to the plate with the mushrooms.

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Let your sauté pan heat up and add your cooked rice. IT WILL STEAM! Don’t worry. You want the rice to “fry”. Add some salt and pepper to the rice. In the middle of your pan, push the rice to the sides, and add the tofu. Let the tofu start to brown and mix with the rice.

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Add the rest of your vegetables and mix. In a bowl, stir all the liquids and spices together and add to the stir-fry. Let the flavors cook together for a few minutes. Taste the stir-fry and add spices/liquids accordingly to your taste.

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Enjoy xoxo

Italian Style Pasta Salad

Italian Style Pasta Salad

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Happy Labor Day! Hope everyone is having a relaxing and fun weekend!

When you have food allergies or Celiac Disease, going to parties or cookouts can be a scary thing. You’re not sure who made what, if food was cross-contaminated, or if it contains secret allergy additives. Typically when I go to a cookout, I will bring a dish I know that I can eat and I will ask what is being served. If you have a question about something, don’t eat it! It is not worth it! This quick and easy Italian Style Pasta Salad is a great dish to bring anywhere.

What You Need:

Gluten Free Pasta

Orange Pepper, chopped (you can use any color)

Grape Tomatoes, diced

Can of Gluten Free, BPA Olives, sliced

Mozzarella Mini Balls

Fresh Basil, chopped

Italian Seasoning (I used Trader Joes 21 Mix and an Italian Season Grinder)

Olive Oil

Apple Cider Vinegar (I ran out of red wine vinegar)

Liquid Amino Acids

What To Do:

Cook the pasta according to the directions. I slightly over cook the pasta (not so it is a gooey mess) but so that the pasta stays soft. Sometimes with gluten free pasta, the noodles when cold do not stay soft like regular pasta does.

When the pasta is done cooking and cooled, put the pasta in a bowl. Add all veggies and olives. Drizzle the olive oil on top and mix until the pasta is coated. Mix in about 1/8 cup of apple cider vinegar. Remember that this vinegar has a sweeter taste so add 2 teaspoons of liquid amino acids to balance the sweetness. Depending on how seasoned you like your pasta salad; add in seasoning and taste as you go! Add the mozzarella balls and fresh basil. Let the pasta salad sit for about an hour to let all the flavors incorporate.

Don’t be afraid to experiment. I was going to use red wine vinegar but I ran out. I also had run out of balsamic so I used apple cider (clearly I need to go shopping).  Knowing that it is a sweeter vinegar, I had to balance the flavors with something a bit saltier. You can use any mixture of vegetables in your pasta salad and try different combos of spices.  Cooking is fun so don’t be scared to try different things.  If it doesn’t come out the way you wanted it, then you know for next time! Enjoy! xoxo

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Spaghetti Squash Margarita Pizza Boat

Spaghetti Squash Margarita Pizza Boat

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Spaghetti Squash is such a versatile vegetable.   You can use it in place of spaghetti and combine different combinations of vegetables, spices, or cheeses in.

Spaghetti Squash has an array of vitamins ranging from vitamin A to C, up to vitamin K. Manganese is an important mineral found in Spaghetti Squash. It aids in the production of healthy bones and tissues. It also increases your metabolism, while regulating blood sugar and the functioning of the nervous system. Spaghetti Squash also helps prevent or decrease inflammation! It contains Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats, which helps inflammation, arthritis, and brain function.

 

What You Need:

Spaghetti Squash

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

Italian Spice Grinder

Tomato Sauce (You can use my recipe under Sunday Dinners on the blog)

Parmesan Cheese

Fresh Mozzarella

Gluten Free Pepperoni

Fresh Basil

What To Do:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and put a coating (little) of olive oil on a baking pan. Cut the Spaghetti Squash down the middle and scoop out the seeds.

Place face up on the baking pan and sprinkle with your seasonings. Top with a little bit of olive oil and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes (depending on the size of your squash). You want the squash to be undercooked.

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With a fork, scrape the inside of the squash to make “noodles”.

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In a bowl, mix the tomato sauce and a handful of parmesan cheese with the squash. Use as much as you would like. I added a little extra sauce since it will be baking in the oven again.

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Place the squash back into the boats and cook for another 10-15 minutes in the oven. In the meantime, slice your mozzarella and season with the Italian Grinder and chop up a few fresh basil leaves. Take the squash boats out and cover with mozzarella and basil.

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Put back in the oven for five minutes or until the mozzarella is melted and gooey.

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ENJOY! xoxo

Garlic Butter Steak with Red Wine Mushrooms Over Spinach

Garlic Butter Steak with Red Wine

Mushrooms Over Spinach

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I rarely eat meat but when I do, I like to make sure I eat a quality, free-range, farm raised, antibiotic-free meat.  I typically like a more tender steak like rib eye steak or filet mignon. Try not to pick out a piece that has a lot of fat in the middle. You want some fat or marbleizing because it makes your steak more tender, but you do not want a large slab of fat running through your steak. I like to grill my steaks since the grill gives the steak a distinct taste and personally I like a grilled steak (This part is where my step-dad or brothers come in).

 

What You Need for Steak Marinade:

Your preference of meat

Olive Oil

Red Wine Vinegar

Italian Herbs

Salt and Pepper

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What To Do:

Take the piece of steak and with a fork, poke holes throughout the piece. Place the steak in a bowl and drizzle on olive oil to coat. Rub the olive oil into the steak and then pour on some red wine vinegar (I don’t measure, I eyeball it by how full my bowl is and how many pieces of meat are in it). Sprinkle on salt, pepper, and Italian herbs. Put as much as you would like on. Remember to be careful with the salt. You can always add more, not take any away. Rub down your steak again and let it sit in the marinade for about an hour.

While the steak is marinating, start on your garlic butter.

What You Need for the Garlic Butter:

1 Stick of Room Softened Butter

2 Cloves of Garlic, crushed

Salt

Plastic Wrap

What To Do:

With a blender, whip together the butter, garlic, and a pinch of salt until combined. On a large piece of plastic wrap, place your butter in the middle of the plastic wrap. Start by spreading the butter into a tube shape, eventually using the plastic wrap as your guide. Place in the refrigerator until your steak is ready to eat.

While the steak is on the grill, start making the red wine mushrooms.

What You Need For the Mushrooms:

Package of Mushrooms

Olive Oil

Red Wine

Butter

Salt and Pepper

What To Do:

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In a large skillet pan, coat the bottom with olive oil. Slice your mushrooms and add to the pan. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper and stir. When the mushrooms are getting tender, add in about 1/4-1/2 cup of wine. Let it cook for a bit and add 1 tablespoon of butter. It makes the sauce taste a little bit richer. Cook for a couple more minutes so that the flavors can really incorporate together.

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When the steak is cooked to your desired preference, let it rest for a few minutes so the juices can stay inside the steak. I quickly sauted some spinach and made mashed potatoes to complete this dish. I topped that with the steak and mushrooms with a pat of the garlic butter on top!

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This was AMAZING!!!

Crispy Oven Baked French Fries

Crispy Oven Baked French Fries

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As much as possible, I like to make sure I am eating whole foods and not processed or frozen items. When in a pinch, you can find some healthier options, but with a quick and easy recipe to make crispy French Fries, you won’t need to reach for the freezer or the drive thru.

People often think that potatoes aren’t healthy. They can be if you eat them fried or drenched in unhealthy condiments. Potatoes are full of fiber, potassium, and vitamins B and C. They also contain a variety of phytonutrients that have antioxidant properties. Phytonutrients help prevent diseases and help maintain our body’s natural defenses.

 

What You Need:

Potatoes (you can use any type)

Olive Oil

Salt

What To Do:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees while prepping your potatoes. Slice your potatoes into rectangles with how thick you would like them. The thicker the slices, the longer they will need to cook and the softer they will be in the inside.

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Dry them with a paper towel. On a baking sheet, drizzle some olive oil, and place the potato slices on. Sprinkle some salt and pepper on and mix the flavors together.

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Put them into the oven for 20 minutes, flip and cook another 10. Remember the thicker the potato, the more they will need to cook. You want the outside to be nice and crispy!

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