It’s been an insanely busy weekend that started with the arrival of some dear friends Doborah & Dan whom we consider “Mishpocha” (family) on Thursday July 4th. We had not seen them in 2 years and it was an absolute blessing to be able to visit with them, especially knowing we will be out of the country for the next 2 years.
I made and froze 3 pint sized mason jars of juice before things became insane…that was a good idea but I wish I had made 2 more. This weekend involved a crazy amount of running around and food preparation and an impromptu 3rd BBQ added to the 2 we already had on our calendar. There were 2 days in the last 5 that I did not have a juice, however, I did have a smoothie every day and somehow even managed to loose a couple of pounds. I’m now only 5lbs more then I was when I ended my juice fast…even with some of my food escapades over the weekend!
One of Deborah’s favorite meals is lamb (which is [was?] also my favorite meat) and I happen to have a pasture-raised lamb roast in the deep freeze so into the crock pot it went. I figured since I was 3 weeks post juice fast, it would be a good time to see about reintroducing some animal products…even though I tried my buffalo chicken dip last week (which used to be one of my favorite foods ever) and really didn’t care for it. Well, the same thing happened with the lamb. I ate a small amount-I think I was trying to really like and enjoy it….but it just didn’t happen. Thankfully, it didn’t make me feel yucky, I just wasn’t crazy about the taste or texture. I was very glad I had made some oven roasted eggplant, squash & green beans (all from my local farmers market) with coconut oil and curry in my stoneware dish. I mention the stoneware because I really notice a difference when I roast my veggies in a stoneware (untreated on the inside where the food goes) baking dish as opposed to my glass baking dishes. Being the Pampered Chef product junkie I am, I get mine through them. I also prepared a most amazing Creamy Curry Kale & Cauliflower Salad that is seriously delicious…I actually made that dressing twice over the weekend! And I even had leftover dressing (that got used on something else at some point between Thursday and Saturday) from when I made it for that night. The directions call for you to massage the kale and that makes all the difference in the world!
Here is a picture of the one I made
Friday we went Blackberry picking and I had aspirations to make a cobbler for my BBQ on Sunday. However, the time I planned to spend in the kitchen on Friday evening to make desserts for sunday was thwarted by the opportunity to visit with some friends that were in the area from out of town that are also close with our guests…I had planned on making (and trying) baked salmon with crushed garlic and herbs from my garden for dinner that night…which I did make and brought with us, along with some noodled zucchini (on the spiralizer) which I tossed with some leftover Thai Satay Style Dipping Sauce. I added a a couple of teaspoons or so of brown rice vinegar to the sauce because it was pretty thick. I also made and brought a super easy Baba Ghanoush (sorry no pics because I was in such a rush but here my recipe:
1 cooled & peeled roasted eggplant (with holes poked all over by a fork-oven roasted at 350 degrees for 45 or so minutes or about 35min @ 400-I put it in the oven when I was baking something else)
2 cloves garlic
1 lemon (juiced)
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup olive oil
1-2 tsp smoked paprika
Salt and pepper to taste
Cut off the top and then cut the eggplant lengthwise into 4 sections. This makes it easier to peel (which I did with my fingers) and add the eggplant with all the other ingredients into your food processor, blender or Vitamix (which I used and yields super-smooth results) and process until smooth….garnish with a sprinkle of smoked paprika for color.
Serve with sliced cucumber or your favorite gluten free crackers or dehydrator crackers.
I also found myself making nut milks thought the weekend…which lead to more pulp that needed to be dehydrated. So I also decided to try making dehydrator crackers which did not turn out as crispy as I had hoped even after dehydrating them for over 24 hours. But they are flavorful and go well with the Baba Ghanoush…I didn’t follow a recipe exactly which could have contributed to my problem. I will just have to try again 🙂
Deborah made a delicious coleslaw with purple cabbage (it was beautiful but of course, I didn’t get a pic) and made enough for all 3 BBQ’s. I also added it to tonight’s salad. Here is her recipe…and remember this made A LOT. I still have a quart or so of it in the fridge which I will happily eat over the next couple of days.
2 small red cabbages (chopped)
1 medium green cabbage (chopped)
2 limes (juiced)
1 small strip of roasted red pepper
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 T light rice vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 droppers of Stevia
1/2 Jalepeno pepper (minced very small)
There you have the first half of my holiday weekend food-wise. There is so much to tell you, I will leave the second half of the weekend to post tomorrow. I found that as long as I brought foods I could eat, I was not at all bothered by the ones that were not aligned with what I want to put into my body. The lesson? Always bring foods you can eat to a BBQ!