Thai-Indian Cabbage Slaw

17 Feb

 

Sometimes I read a recipe and I just think, YES.  

My sister texted me a screenshot of this one from Food and Wine magazine and I could not wait to pull all the ingredients off the shelves and whip it up…and sure enough, it is so good.  I adapted it a little bit, because the original was slightly too bitter/spicy for my preference.  (Maybe I just measured wrong.) The dressing is so savory and unique and exotic tasting.  It tastes restaurant-level good — I would order it over and over!

I named it Thai Indian.  Thai for the fish sauce.  Indian for the garam masala.  🙂

Another thing that makes this recipe so awesome is that you get to use up your somewhat obscure pantry items that otherwise end up expiring: fish sauce, garam masala, and sriracha.  (If you want some inspiration for those ingredients, make Kheema and Green Curry.)

This is another one of those salads that I could sit down on the couch and eat the whole bowl without abandon.  Along with the original kale salad and the pistachio herb salad, this one completes the Prime Pursuit Salad Trifecta.  🙂

Here you go, bring this to your next potluck and everyone will be thanking you!


DRESSING:
1/4 c olive oil
juice of 3 limes
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1-2 tbsps honey
2 tbsp soy sauce/coconut aminos
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp sriracha
1 1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt

SALAD:
1 large or 2 small heads of cabbage cored and finely shredded (I use one green and one purple)
6 scallions thinly sliced
1 bunch cilantro finely chopped
1 bunch mint finely chopped.

Garnish: red bell pepper, sliced cucumber, chopped cashews or peanuts

Whisk the salad dressing ingredients together in a large bowl. Add the cabbage, scallions, cilantro and mint, toss to coat.


Same Slaw, topped it with Peanuts, Avocado, Tomatoes and Mandarins

This slaw would make an amazing meal topped with seared fish, grilled shrimp, beef, or chicken.

Enjoy!
Leigh


Check out these delicious salad recipes:

Tangy Pistachio Herb Salad

Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad


 

Share the Love, Pin this!

 

5 Tips to Maintain a Clean-Eating Mindset

9 Feb

My hubby entertains me from time to time with a very special talent he has developed.  He does bodycomp transformation before-and-after selfies in a mirror.  30 seconds apart.  A slight shift from slightly slumping to meticulous flexing while breath holding, and his entire torso can look months apart in leanness.  

I begged for permission to share pictorial proof for all you loyal readers.
One, for the purpose of illustration.
And two, that we all begin to flood the internet with our own same day before-and-afters.
He agreed.  

 

This dadbod works for me 🙂

 

I love it.

Needless to say, When I see a before-and-after on social media, I am rather suspect.  Look closely.  Did the camera really show something different…did they actually radically alter their lifestyle?

I think this kind of thing can throw people off their game, make people feel like giving up, or assume that it’s all too hard.  


 

A great side-by-side selfie should not be the endstate of your eating program.  The goal is cruising in clean-eating autopilot.  You can do it!

But it’s so easy to overthink the whole thing.
With all this said, let’s discuss five ways to keep your mind in the game.

 


1.  Know *YOUR* Why

Why is not a result. Why is not, “I am going to eat 100% paleo this year” -or-  “I am going to lose ten pounds.” -or- “I am going to shock the internet with my before-and-after selfie.”

Why is a purpose:

  • I am empowered in knowing that I can partner with food to promote my total wellness. (Nothing I am ingesting will exacerbate health maladies).
  • I have seen what years of bad habits can do to me and/or my loved ones
  • I want my bodyskin to become paperthin, in order to scratch fitness modeling off my bucket list*

My why is
1. Mental health
2. Insulin/hypoglycemia issues (read: hanger.)
3. Setting a good example for the 5 sets of eyes on me.  Constantly. 

Keep YOUR WHY at the forefront of your mind.   

 


 

2. Re-Read

Re-read the original sources that point you to the best nutrition.

Not little quips off of Pinterest, but get back into the good stuff:  The Primal Blueprint, Mark’s Daily Apple, It Starts with Food, The Paleo Solution,  Bright Line Eating.  If you read those 4-5 years ago, re-read.  (Or read for the first time!)  You will gain inspiration all over again, and perhaps you will even see things in there you did not catch on the first go-around.  

 


 

3.  Don’t do work twice when you can do it once.  

Double batch every time you cook.  If you are not able to eat twice from whatever you have cooked, you are not winning. 

You are thinking, gosh this is so much food prep already, now I have to double it?  Yes.  Heck, you might as well do it 4x and have your Mondays taken care of for the month.  Remember, the freezer is your pantry.  The moment it feels like too much work is the moment you call for pizza.  Nothing takes the wind out of your sails faster than having one more thing to do.  

Nick Shaw is over there at Renaissance Periodization making A MILLION DOLLARS merely convincing all his minions to multiply food prep times seven.  So, double, triple, quadruple if you have to.  It’s worth it.  

Bonus: you will always have a bench stock of healthy freezer meals to deliver to someone in need.  That is one of the best ways to be the light in someone’s day!

 


 

4.  Stick to the old reliables. 

Re-creating the wheel every week makes clean eating a chore.  Stick to a solid rotation of delicious food.  Pick 7-10 of your favorite clean meals, and just make those…over and over.  When I was growing up we had spaghetti every Monday.  I thought it was awesome.  Here are my reliables on the rotation all the time:

Clean Spaghetti (with zoodles or spaghetti squash)
Fresh Roast Chicken  (make two while you’re at it)
Butter Chicken (perfect freezer meal)

Marinated Flank Steak (freeze a second batch raw in ziplock, thaw then throw on grill)
Kofte Kebab Meatballs
Seasoned Fish or other Meat + 2 veggies

6 meals right there, and there are usually leftovers for night number 7.  Pick your 6.

I have been doing a lot more work over on Pinterest in an effort to pick up momentum for this blog.  I am totally baffled by the amount of content over there.  It’s dizzying, and gives me recipe FOMO.

Don’t make more of cooking than it needs to be.  Get into a niche and cruise.

 


 

5.  Draw your own HFO chart.

Simply put, there are foods that you will not want to eliminate from your diet.

I want to re-introduce you to one of the original Melissa Hartwig inspographics.  I can’t remember if this is in the book.  It was on her blog ten years ago.**  I’m not promoting this kind of language, but it is not my brainchild.  

HFO Scale

 
To further explain:
 
The healthiest foods are low on the F-off scale. (Example: Salmon is very healthy. I love salmon, and concur with your analysis and therefore eat lots of salmon.)
  
Foods that I am told are not SO healthy, but I think are healthy enough on occasion, are closer to the F-off zone. (Example: On occasion, despite all the arguments against legumes, I will tell you to F-off and eat the damn peanut butter. These occasions are not common, but they do occur.)
  
Foods that should be eliminated from my diet completely because they are nowhere near healthy, but which I have determined are mandatory for me having an enjoyable existence for the next 50 years, are EXTREMELY high on the F-off scale. These foods include iced coffees, Grey Goose dirty martinis and anything covered in maple syrup.  You gotta live right? (Source: AMRAP Fitness, I think it *might* have been lifted from Melissa’s early writings, so I will credit them both.)
 
My list is cheese, dark chocolate and half & half (Had a complete and total meltdown in the grocery when I found out it doesn’t exist in the UK).  Allowing these three foods back into my diet liberated me to keep it clean everywhere else.

I will go a step further and even submit that an HFO Chart could possibly look different every month.  Or even every week.

Keep two or three things on the f-off list in order to stay sane.


 

Don’t let anything throw you off course. 

  • Know YOUR why
  • Read original sources
  • Work smarter not harder
  • Stick to a reliable meal rotation
  • Draw your F-off scale

Also, stop stressing over the before-and-after selfies.

Do you have any other tips that help you keep your mind over the matter?  Please share with us, I would love to discuss in the comments!

Have a great weekend,
Leigh

 


 

*If your why is to become a fitness model, then yeah.  A paleo diet will not be the path for you.  It’s too calorically dense.  You instead need to become a chemist in order to account for every molecule that crosses your lips.  Different plan altogether.

**(Her blog was hilarious and *brilliant* and the precursor to her awesome books.  I have asked her people over at Whole30 if I can have a special invite to the old blog, but they didn’t respond. )

 

Yellow Cauli-Rice

2 Feb

yellow rice

It is marginally rewarding to report that 1/3 of my kids’ daily intake is very clean.  While Eric and I have been healthfully minded for almost every meal, bringing all the kids along on that train is so much harder.  I was all about it back when we had three kids.  ( 🎶🎵Glory days🎵🎶)

I am doing well to ensure all our dinners are clean/primal.  That means nothing more than one protein + two vegetables.  My lifelong friend Robbi nailed it:

“As (the adults’) nutrition increases, the kids is going straight down hill.  We can’t afford to feed EVERY mouth like this for every meal, so the ones who make the money get the better food.  

#sorrykids  

#youcanwhole30whenyouhavejobs.”


Confession.  I absolutely love prepackaged yellow rice: Goya, Zatarains, Mahatma.  I would eat an entire pot of it if I could. My kids love it too, and it’s just so easy to cut open the box, dump it in a pot, add water, boil it up and throw it on a plate.  I love yellow rice as a topping for taco salads and wraps and eggs.  And on and on.

this cauli-rice appears brown because I did not use the magic ingredient: yellow #5!

I needed to come up with my own recipe for two reasons.  1.  My favorite yellow rice can only be acquired by driving three hours to our US Commissary.  That’s excessive.   And 2. After doing a little research on the ingredients of yellow rice, I found a common denominator across all the brands: MSG.

Scientific studies show that MSG is made out of meth.  That is why after one hit–hardly anything can stop you from ingesting more, it makes everything taste so good.  It’s science.  On the flip side, coming down from an MSG overdose is brutal.  I am telling you, I once had a two-day migraine after eating a delicious beef pho made apparently from nothing but liquid MSG concentrate + noodles.  But I sure loved it when it was going down!

MSG is actually used to hyper-flavor many processed foods, and over-consuming it can offset our palates.  It takes time and effort to get that palate reset! 

Anyway, it was time for me to make a primal/grain free yellow rice alternative.  Homemade yellow rice is a simple process, and so this was an easy paleo conversion.  Just note: cauli-rice will always have a *hint* of cauli flavor, which is something to get used to when transitioning into a grain-free lifestyle.


 

1 large head of riced cauliflower (about 6 cups ground)
2 Tbsp olive oil

1 red onion finely diced
1 red bell pepper finely diced
2 Tbsp olive oil
 3/4-1 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp coriander

optional garnish (not pictured): tons of chopped cilantro and a sprinkling of toasted pine nuts

In a large frying pan, saute the cauli-rice in 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat until softened/toasted, about 8-10 minutes.  Set aside.  (I used a large mixing bowl to hold the sauteed cauli-rice.)  In the same frying pan, add 1-2 more tbsp of oil and saute the onion and red bell pepper over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes.  Return cauli-rice to the pan, and add the spices.  Stir over medium heat until mixed completely.  Serve hot, topped with cilantro and pine nuts if desired.


such clean ingredients here

pin this 🙂

This yellow cauli-rice would be a fantastic base for a one-pot meal.  Top it with any grilled or roasted meat, poultry, shrimp, fish or sausage. 

Enjoy!!
Leigh


 

 

Here are a few other cauliflower recipes to check out:

Cauli-coconut flower bread

Cauliflower Grits Breakfast Casserole

 

Cauliflower Wraps

How to See Light when Walking Through Nothing but Darkness

27 Jan

Leaves use light to make food to nourish the tree.

I had an “aha” moment this morning after a group-chat with my friend who recently lost two pregnancies and her fertility due to complications.  Understandably, she is grieving deeply.  I have had losses myself and know acutely how deep the pain can sear.

Our group was reading John 8:12, focusing on the concept of light.  In that passage Christ instructs, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”  We all kicked the idea back and forth when finally, she posed a very good question:

How can this be true when I’ve been walking through lingering darkness, despair, and disappointment?  And, I know many other earnest believers suffering overwhelming, relentless depression.  This verse doesn’t seem to be true.

I was sitting there simply dumbfounded and slightly panicked.  She was right.  Come to think of it, everyone I know has walked through seasons of utter despondency, grief and long spells of darkness.

Suddenly, it dawned on me.  Maybe we were defining the word “light” incorrectly.   Maybe we attached false expectations onto that one word.

Light is a tool.  A guide.  Illumination.  Enlightenment.



Not absence of pain.


“Darkness” is the typical language we use to describe the experience of pain.   It feels gloomy, foggy, oppressive, disappointing, and sometimes endless.   We await a “light” at the end of the tunnel.  But some tunnels do not have a light at the end (here on Earth.)  Some dark things are only resolved by God who will make everything sad come untrue in the fullness of time.

💡Light is knowing that.


Without the Light, we trudge alone through the storms of pain by “using.”  We use.  Not just alcohol and drugs…we use anything that covers over pain for a short time.  Food, exercise, friends, shopping, reading, sleeping are all good things, but they are not good permanent relievers of pain.  In spite of long periods of pain, we don’t need to rummage for fix after fix after fix.  

💡Light points out false remedies.


In the pit of pain, the darkness makes you panic.  It is common to exclaim, “I don’t know what to do or where to turn!”  With this light of Christ in hand, we can know.  We don’t get a view of the entire path of healing.  However, we can determine what to do today.  We advance incrementally, and in hindsight we look back to see our custom-built path for healing well. 

💡Light illuminates the next step.


Carrying the burden of pain increases internal stamina and fortitude.  We develop a core strength only developed through the struggle.  There is another personal reward: a sense of validity, legitimacy, community, solidarity with the other members of the long line of human suffering.

💡Light showcases the sinews of strength the sad journey amassed in you.


Darkness makes it feel like the joy of others is shallow and nearsighted.  If I am in pain, then I want other people to understand and I want them to feel my pain.  A “no-one-gets-me” air proliferates until you are rendered powerless and unmotivated to contribute to anything or anyone.  Only gratitude can push back this clouded thinking.      

💡Light spotlights your blessings, drives out pain-pride.


Not everyone knows where to get this light.  If we have it, we have to share it.  This does not mean just talk about the light.  Light is spread by meeting needs.  Someone is always in need.  An act of kindness or generosity will instantly break through someone’s darkness.  Keep scanning for hardship, and then be an action-taker.

💡Light blazes like a fire.  If someone is cold, build one for them.    


It is going to be increasingly important to be able to identify all sources, facets and conduits of light in a world of viral abject darkness.  I will be all over John 8:12 from now on.  Following Him empowers me with the light for illuminated life.  

Thanks for musing over these thoughts with me.

Leigh


 

These same trees during the dark season are thriving on strength that came from light of days gone by.  They have all they need today to make new buds for tomorrow. 


Read More:

How to Wait Well


Clean Eating versus Heart Satiety

Mushroom Stilton Soup

17 Jan
mushroom stilton soup

Mushroom Stilton Soup

Christmas break was a fun vortex via Space-A** travel.  It was jetlag, great weather, family dynamics, eating, shopping, presents, and then a second (far worse) dose of jetlag all jammed into a two-week period.  Looking back, I loved it and am finally recovered from the post-vacation hangover that seems harder and harder to nurse the older I get.  

Ledbury England

Ledbury–so many discoveries in this little village 🙂

The jury is still out when it comes to my feelings toward England.  There is so much good here.  But there is just so much…different.  Different.  I am trying so diligently to make sure I don’t equate “different” with “difficult” or “disappointing.”  Turns out I’m married to my creature comforts.  The longing for my warm fuzzies seems to be trumping the sense of wanderlust and adventure I am supposed to be feeling while living abroad.  

But I am getting out there.  Ledbury is a cute little market town about 30 minutes from me.  It is full of doorways to duck into: shops, antique stores, pubs, and cafes.  The architecture is quintessentially English, exactly what you would imagine in your mind.  I asked a local for the best place to get a bite and a coffee, besides Greggs.  (I love Greggs, by the way.  I am addicted to their bacon & cheese wrap + americano for 2 pounds fifty.)

I will have to go back over there to get the name of the cafe–but it was one of the best lunches I’ve eaten here.  The soup of the day was Mushroom Stilton.  It sounded good…and come to think of it, mushroom stilton soup does pair well with brooding skies and damp coldness.  (It seemed like it could also simply be made out of the stuff ya scratch off the roofs around here.)  So I took the risk, because “when in Rome” has been my mantra.  Ordering this soup felt very “Romey” if you will.  

In all seriousness, I loved it.  Then I embarrassed myself and my friend by asking for the recipe.  And the kitchen actually shared the jist of it!  I’ve made it a few times since that visit, and decided it was worth sharing.  

Am I asking you to make soup out of mushrooms and blue cheese?  Yes.

This is sophisticated comfort food made from locally-sourced produce.  I am thrilled to put ingredients like mushrooms and blue cheese into something greater than on a salad or pizza.  Finally, it is so authentic to this area.  If you ever get to host any sort of British-themed gathering, put this on your menu with confidence.  


1-2 tablespoons olive oil

1 heaping cup of each of the following:
chopped onion
chopped leek with white parts
chopped celery
potatoes, peeled and diced small (1/2 inch cubes)
1/3 c water

6-7 heaping cups chopped mushrooms

4 cups stock
1/3 cup crumbled Stilton (or blue cheese)
1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 tsp pepper

In a large stock pot, saute onions in olive oil until translucent, then add the leeks, celery, and potatoes.  Saute this mixtures for a few minutes, then add about 1/3 cup water.  Cover and let simmer over medium low heat until the potatoes are soft.   Once the potatoes are fork tender, add the mushrooms and stock, and simmer over medium low heat for about 15 minutes.  Stir in the crumbled Stilton.  With an immersion blender, blend the soup until completely pureed.  This can also be done in batches in a blender.

salt and pepper to taste
Garnish with leftover leeks and a dollop of sour cream/creme fraiche/plain yogurt


This was so delicious, a true pleasure to make and eat!  Even the kids happily slurped it up.  

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**Space-A travel = When an Air Force jet releases seats  if there is “space available” in their passenger/cargo sections.  It is a crap-shoot whether there will be any seats on the day the flight leaves.  You just show up with your bags, your passports, and your prayers.  🙂 

PSA: “crap-shoot” does not mean the same thing in England as it does in the USA.


 

 

Check out some other delicious macro-friendly soup ideas:

pumpkin sausage soup

Pumpkin Sausage Soup

BLT Soup

BLT Soup

Curried Squash Soup

Curried Squash Soup

My Favorite Things for this Family of 7

7 Dec

I thought long and hard whether or not to write about our 2017 family motto:

This is a family, and family means that no one gets to do what they want to do.  

It would be therapeutic for me to unpack all that statement has meant.  But it would be a downer.  Instead, I am going to try to come from a positive place, and share a few of our best go-to items of the year.  These are not #ads.  I have no idea if I am even legally allowed to publish any of this…nevertheless these are the gift ideas I feel like sharing.  

 

Georgia Approved

Georgia will kick off the list with Sky Organics Shea butter.  This poor baby suffers from significant eczema all over her body…such a bummer that she did not inherit her dad’s Asian skin, which feels identical to the surface of a dolphin.  Since she isn’t endowed with the Flipper-skin that he has, I have to use this cream which really does help her flare-ups.  It’s all-natural and isn’t greasy the like many of the physician prescribed ointments.  I have recently discovered that it’s hand cream, under eye cream, and also happens to make great furniture polish.  I’m gonna go out on a limb and assume it’s edible too, so stay tuned for a recipe entitled “Georgia’s Shea Butter Veggie Dip.”

 

 

 

 

 

just a box of reminders of days long past

Next, Olivia presents Kinetic Sand.  Coming from Hawaii, I had a very hard time making the transition to purchasing sand… but I had to face the facts.  Our endless summer days are over now, and this tactile messy-play little lady can sit with this stuff for hours.  To be sure, four out of my five kids play with this really well.  Yes it gets everywhere, but it is kinda like playdoh in that it adheres to itself, you can dab clumps of it together so most of it gets back in the box.  I vacuum every day anyway.  I recommend the natural colored sand, as the dyed sand does leave color residue on things.  I purchased a shallow container and a few sand tools to keep her occupied.  

 

 

 

 

Color with your children

Okay.  I hope what I am about to say is not offensive to anyone reading.  A huge trend has been developing in the US over the past years: adult coloring.  I have seen invitations for wine and coloring, and most recently my local library offered adult coloring time in the evenings. 

So, *uh* there was a need to establish a gathering place for adults wanting to color?  Oh my word, I go to Target, and just stare at the adult coloring book collection completely incredulous.  What adult has the ability to enjoy themselves by coloring? Is it just me?  If you are an adult who has time to color, then I am living my life all wrong.  And you could make money teaching classes on time management skills.  Oh.  Then you would not have time to color.

Was that a digression? 

Anyway, an adult coloring with a child is a super way to chill out with them, and so Adair is going to represent our family for the best colored pencils ever (Prismacolor).  They are pricier, but Amazon offers great deals on them from time to time.  They color so smoothly and most importantly, the “leads” do not shatter inside of the pencil.  When you sharpen these pencils, you get perfection every time.  Crayolas are dead to me.

 

 

be thankful if your 12 year old is easy to please!

Best gift of the year for Margaret was a last-minute decision on my part, which turned out to be a huge hit: a pair of white chucks and a package of colored sharpies.  Yes, I let her write on her shoes.  That’s me trying to let go in some areas.  Also it’s a silent tactic/attempt to divert from all the incessant teenage angst pre-tattoos on her hands/wrists/forearms.  She’s gone crazy tatting up the shoes, having her friends sign them, and she wears them constantly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

he still throws up a shaka in every picture.

Everyday, Liam rocks my favorite thing for him this year, which are his classic Adidas Sambas.  These shoes have been a god-send to me as a mom of five living a house with no closets.  Basically, I think I am going to get away with only having to buy him one pair of shoes (besides his robo-oafs for school.  Google “boys school shoes England“.  Ugh.  Yes, they all wear these).  One single pair of sambas take him to every event of his life from the skate park, to PE, to cross-country club, and straight into the pew at church.  Don’t need multiple pairs of shoes for a simple guy, and these puppies hold up.  Worth the money.

 

 

 

 

 

I don’t know whether I get compliments on these, or if it’s that I am repeatedly complimenting myself when I wear them.

 

 

Nickel and Suede Leather Earrings.  I am completely obsessed with these.  GAGA.  I was hesitant to buy for years because of the cost, but when she came out with camo, I could not hold back any longer.  These featherweight earrings are genius, so stylish, and makes wearing this size jewelry actually practical.  They are so worth the money and make me feel amazing.  Plus it’s a nice way to support small business–I won’t tell her whole story but let’s just say Kilee is my ICON for style and entrepreneurship while mothering five kiddos.  It’s been so fun watching her progress over the past 5 years or so!  Beware of knock-offs.  This product is perfection.  She also told me to buy these chokers,  so I did.  I just wish I had managed to meet her in person when we were living in the KC area.  

 

 

 

 

 

This is a rolling metal box with a stick shift and a steering wheel

If I am being honest, my husband’s favorite thing of 2017 is hands-down the 1987 Land Rover (Defender) 90 that he purchased three seconds after we got off the airplane in the UK.  One of these puppies can not be easily acquired in the USA and so I am going to have to link to you the runner-up: Lululemon ABC Pants.  

Hubs wouldn’t model the ABCs for my momblog… but I already had a picture

Eric has been rocking what I call “ball pants” for years… what he calls a “gusseted crotch.”  (Prana and Outdoor Research also happen to make awesome products with the family jewels in mind. )The ABC pants go from trail to city to any nighttime social event without missing a beat.  He has even used them as running pants.  He owns several pairs–they are an investment but he wears them constantly. 

While we are on the subject of Lulu, let me mention their pants in the British sense of the word: the Namastay Put undies.   Yes these are also pricey– but they hold their shape and do the job of killing the VPL.  I can barely walk past a Lulu without grabbing yet another pair.  Get these, now. 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Beauty faves I love putting on every day:  When it comes to living primal/paleo, beauty products are truly where I go off the rails.  I just love finding stuff that works amazingly.  I’m showing my true colors here, because if a product makes me *feel* more beautiful, I will not be able to stop spraying it, applying it, dabbing it or rubbing it in.  I will call it prioritizing looks over my health. 

In fact, you should know that my favorite song of 2015 happened to be Amy Schumer’s Girl You Don’t Need Makeup.  It’s disturbing how much I love that song.  

L’oreal Infallible Pro-Last Lip

 

LIPS:  L’oreal Infallible Pro-Last Lip This is my ten-dollar answer to the LipSense products that were everywhere in the US before I left.  I put this on in the morning, drink coffee, go to the gym, eat a burger, make out with my husband, wash my face, brush my teeth, and it’s still on the NEXT morning.  I am pretty sure it’s nail polish.  But this stuff is awesome.  My first-love product in this same category is Chanel Rouge Double Ultra Wear.  I have been wearing the Chanel since about 2008 but it’s starting to get hard to justify spending the money, so I converted to L’oreal.

LASHES:  L’oreal has another big winner for me with their new Lash Paradise mascara.  Now, a loved one once told me that my eyes look like venus fly-traps…so I may not be the right candidate to push mascara products.  However, this is another drugstore conversion for me.  I am a former Lancome cils booster+definicils user, and I no longer need those products.  Thanks, L’oreal.  My venus traps can live on. 

EYEBAGS:  Garnier Clearly Brighter Anti-Dark Circle Eye roller.  This is the concealer I have been wanting since I was 19 but I had to wait until I was 37 for it to be invented.  Two words: not cakey.  Hides reality with amazing precision.  Find it in the skin care section, not the cosmetics.

HAIR: Style Sexy Hair H2NO dry shampoo.  I use it every day, and on my pre-teen whose hair looks, well, like it needs to be washed.  No white residue and you really can go a third day without washing if you need to.  Smells great, and actually makes your hair feel clean.  It is at a price point slightly lower than salon professional brands, but slightly higher than what you would expect to pay.  The extra cost is worth it, I have tried all the dry shampoos and this is the best I’ve used.

 

That’s all folks.  Top seven gift ideas for the family, plus some no-fail cosmetic suggestions that have made me feel human all over again every morning.   Thanks for stopping by!

Leigh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Easy Cauli-Grits Casseroles + How to Make Up Your Own

30 Nov

Aldi (UK) now stocks lifetime supplies of cauli-rice

Riced cauliflower is everywhere now, safe inside neat packaging.  Gone are the days of whole cauliflower exploding into that adhesive cauli-confetti all over your kitchen.  I once thought I had lice nits in my hair just behind my ear, began panicking because we have five girls in this house…went to a neighbor who confirmed it was just benign bits of cauli.  Thank goodness.  And GROSS!  Just one of the risks of trying to eat healthy, my friends.

I’ve seen it in the produce section as well as the freezer section of grocery stores in both the US and UK.  Of all the ways to prepare it, I prefer it baked in a casserole…maybe it is my southern roots constantly calling out to me “eat more grits!”  I have done so many versions of the recipe below, but never blogged it.  Huge hit with my hubbs and the kids–It is amazing what a few cans of enchilada sauce can do for a dish!

 


 

 

First of all, you can make up any “casserole” with this skeleton of a recipe:

4 cups cooked cauli grits, drained  of excess water +
1 lb cooked meat, chopped +
3-4 eggs beaten +
1-2 cups liquid (coconut milk, tomato sauce, bone broth, etc) +
1-2 cups other veg or mix-ins +
seasonings of choice.

Stir this all together and bake in a 9X13 at 350 for 40 minutes.

Below I will give you two ideas, but be creative.  Branch out.  This can be a delicious side or a filling main dish depending on how much protein you decide to add.  Also, If you don’t need to eliminate dairy, throw in 2-3 handfuls of cheese!  I recommend white cheddar :):)


Chicken “Enchilada” Casserole

4 cups cooked, diced chicken.
cumin and chili powder to season the meat.

4 cups cooked (boiled or sauteed) cauliflower grits
2 cups mild enchilada sauce
4 eggs, beaten
8 oz diced green chilies, drained
3/4 c chopped green onions
1 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp pepper
juice of 1 lime

Season the chicken generously with cumin and chili powder (1-2 tbsps each).  Saute or boil ground cauliflower until done.  (Use the same method described in my original breakfast casserole.)  Drain and set aside.  In a large bowl, lightly whisk the eggs, then add in the green onion, chilies, salt, garlic powder, pepper and lime juice.  To that mixture add in the cooled chicken, cauliflower, and enchilada sauce.

Pour the mixture into a prepared 9×13 baking dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until center is set.

cauliflower chicken enchilada casserole, with avocado cilantro cream


Beef “Enchilada” Casserole

1 onion, diced
4 cups diced mushrooms*
1 pound ground beef
2 tablespoons cumin
1 tsp each: chili powder, garlic powder, dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt

Two 10-oz cans of mild red enchilada sauce.
juice of one lemon or lime

3 eggs lightly beaten
4 cups cooked cauliflower rice

* Mushrooms a downer?  Sub 1 can drained black beans.

Saute the onion and mushrooms until they are wilted and soft.  Add the beef and saute until browned.  Season the meat mixture with the cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, oregano, and salt.  Stir in the enchilada sauce and lemon juice.  In a large bowl, add the beaten eggs to the (cooled) cauliflower rice, then stir in the meat mixture.  Mix well, and pour into a prepared 9×13 pan.  Bake at 350 degrees 40 minutes or until the center is set.

Serve hot.  Makes fantastic breakfast leftovers topped with a couple of fried eggs.

beef and mushroom cauliflower enchilada casserole

 


 

Enjoy!!

Leigh

 

last night’s dinner->this morning’s breakfast

this is the face I want to see when the kiddos are eating their veg!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

For other cauliflower rice ideas, check out

Cauli “grits” Breakfast Casserole

Unwrapped Gyoza

Cauliflower Bread

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