Bacon-Apple Burgers

Today, my husband started the day with the following challenge… “How come at-home burgers never taste as good as restaurant ones?”.  I set forth to prove him wrong!

These were really good as bunless burgers, and even got the thumbs up from my husband and 7 year old.  Now, I don’t know if he would go so far as to say they are better than restaurant ones, but these were pretty darned good.  I piled mine under avocado, tomatoes and lettuce, with a side of terra chips, so you can’t really see too much of the actual burger.

The original recipe for these burgers calls for grated apples, but I liked the idea of little chunks of apples, so I chopped them.

Bacon-Apple Burgers

1 lb ground beef (We used 84% lean)

1/2-1 cup finely chopped, cooked bacon

1/2-1 cup finely chopped (or grated) apples (peeled and cored)

1 egg

Salt and pepper to taste

Condiments (Avocado, tomato, onion and lettuce, in my case)

1. Cook your bacon until crispy in a large skillet.  Once finished, pat the bacon dry and let cool.  Once cool, finely chop

2. While the bacon is cooking, peel, core and chop your apple

3. Mix the beef, bacon, apple, egg, salt and pepper together until the bacon and apples are well distributed throughout the mixture.

4. Form into 6 patties (I’ve heard cutting out a small hole in the middle keeps them from shrinking too much and helps them cook faster)

5. Fry in the bacon grease (or in coconut oil if this irks you) over medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes per side, or until desired done-ness

6. Pile your condiments on top of your burger

7. Dig in!

Sunchokes (Jerusalem Artichokes)

I have been waiting for these to show up in my produce box!  They are a wonderful alternative to white potatoes – they aren’t sweet like sweet potatoes and have a beautiful, nutty flavor.  Last year, I made a killer sunchoke gratin with these, but since I’m off cheese, I’ll have to find something else to do with them.  If you are curious about whether or not sunchokes are “strictly” paleo, you can google “are sunchokes paleo?” and read through the different viewpoints.

The are often recommended as a replacement for potatoes for diabetics and people on a low-GI diet.  I am going to figure out what to do with these puppies and I’ll get back to you.

Here are a few ideas:

Rosemary roasted sunchokes

Sunchoke chips

Mushroom & sunchoke saute (with bacon??!)

Avocado Chicken Salad (aka Chicken Guacamole)

Hey friends – it’s been a busy few weeks.  7 year old baseball has begun, work’s been crazy and we have an almost 2 year old who is crazy cute but a wild one!

Here is a quick dinner or lunch recipe you can whip up in no time for busy nights – the bonus is that it’s delicious too!

Avocado Chicken Salad

1/2 cup grilled chicken, chopped into small pieces

1/2 – 1 whole avocado

1/4 cup red onion or shallot, finely chopped

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

1 tbsp lime juice

Sea salt and pepper to taste

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1. Put everything in a bowl

2. Mash it up

3. Eat it

Paleo Bread

What an incredible weekend!  This is that time of year in Seattle when the sun finally starts to shine, for the first time since September.  Everyone goes crazy – there are car accidents, mobs everywhere, and long ferry lines.  We hit the beach – it’s still a little too windy and cold for the crowds, but for our family, it’s just right for toddler running, driftwood house building and lots of burying feet in the sand.

For breakfast on Saturday morning, I made my easy weekday pancakes, piled high with banana slices and drips of almond butter.  So amazing!

And then we did this:

And this:

When we got home, I decided to make some paleo-friendly bread, from Elana’s Pantry.  I normally don’t like coconut flour very much, but this bread turned out really, really well.  It’s nice and firm and would probably make a great sandwich bread, but as you can see from my picture – I used a wide pan, so my bread turned out a little short and wide :).  It’s also a little oily from the coconut oil, which you could probably reduce if that bothers you, but I think it makes it even more delicious (since it tastes like freshly buttered bread).

Paleo Bread

1 ½ cups blanched almond flour

2 tablespoons coconut flour

¼ cup golden flaxseed meal

¼ teaspoon celtic sea salt

1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

5 eggs

¼ cup coconut oil

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1. Place almond flour, coconut flour, flax, salt and baking soda in a food processor.  Pulse ingredients together

2. Pulse in eggs, oil, honey and vinegar (do it in this order, because otherwise the baking soda and vinegar will react right away)

3. Pour batter into a greased 7.5″ x 3.5″ pan

4. Bake at 350° for 30-45 (I had to bake for 45) minutes, then Cool and serve

Easy weekday pancakes

Okay, so I admit it.  I have a pancake problem.  I don’t know when or how it started, but I think these pancakes my be the root cause.   These are super easy and I think they are delicious and I’ve eaten them three times this week.  They weren’t a huge hit with the kids (they keep asking me when I am going to make “real pancakes”), but they are a great way to tackle your sweet and carb joneses in a totally non-cheater way.

I like to eat these with some chopped up strawberries, coconut butter, and maple syrup and a side of chicken apple sausage. This picture isn’t that great, but you get it, right?  These babies don’t stick around that long to be photographed.

I think these would be delicious with something like blueberries or coconut flakes added to the batter (they might even be a good candidate for the notorious “bacon stuffed pancake”).

Almond-coconut pancakes

Makes 6-9 pancakes

3/4 cup almond flour

1/2 cup canned coconut milk (make sure you shake it really well, in order to mix the cream and water together)

2 eggs

1/4 tsp vanilla

2 tbsp cinnamon

1. Whisk ingredients together until the batter is smooth

2. Heat a tbsp coconut oil (or you can use coconut oil spray, but it has soybean oil in it) in a large saute pan over medium-high heat.

3. Pour slightly less than 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake and fry until bubbles are formed near the center of the pancake (about 2-3 minutes).  Flip and fry the other side (1-2 minutes) until the pancake is cooked through.