Thursday, June 28, 2012


Research in food always gets my brain going...and you just never know what might come out of the pan!

Right now I am looking at the Paleo/Primal ideas of food. Basic premise: eat good meat, good fats, lots of veggies, minimal fruit and dairy. Doing this keeps your blood sugar balanced, and keeps you away from inflammatory foods, which can wreak havoc in your body. As happens with most "diets", you have the full range of investment, from the radical, "all out" folks, to the people who just take everything as a suggestion.

As I was talking to a friend last night about these ideas she told me about a cool cookbook that really has my brain stewing. It is called Well Fed, and I think it may be my new favorite cookbook!

What I think I am really going to love, is the author's idea of doing some big prep on Sundays, to make meal prep during the week go so much more easily. Even though today's recipe has nothing to do with her book, I will give the author Melissa Joulwan the credit for our yummy dinner!

It all started with mushrooms. Mushrooms and broccoli. Except the broccoli ended up back in the fridge, a casualty of my other favorite 'cookbook', The Flavor Bible. I had this idea to saute mushrooms a la Julia Child, in coconut oil. We had some leftover roasted chicken and had just purchased some ginger today as well as some asparagus, so I looked both of those up in my Flavor Bible and it all came together like this:

Chicken with 'Shrooms and Asparagus

5-6 mushrooms, peeled and sliced
2-3 Tbsp coconut oil
butter - skip this if you are dairy free
salt and pepper
1 bunch baby asparagus (the big ones are too tough), ends chopped off and cut in half
thumb size piece of ginger, peeled and grated fine
leftover roasted chicken, chopped (I used about 2 cups)
salt and pepper

* Heat pan to medium heat.
* Add coconut oil, and let melt.
* Add mushrooms in one layer. Saute gently, then flip and cook on other side (I salted mushrooms and added a few tsp of butter here). This will give you beautifully golden mushrooms...a la Julia Child!
* Remove mushrooms from pan, and return pan to burner.
* Add a little more coconut oil/butter and bring to temp. Add asparagus and a little salt. Stirring and tossing til cooked al dente.
* While asparagus is cooking, chop chicken and grate ginger. Add chicken to the pan.
* Return mushrooms to pan.
* When chicken is warmed through, add ginger and toss all ingredients together. Check salt and pepper and adjust accordingly.

I dished this yummy concoction onto our plates, and topped it with a bit of freshly grated Parmesan. It added a nice tang, and truthfully, I thought it might encourage the kids to dig in if they saw cheese on top! They are pretty brave eaters, but the idea of mushrooms was throwing the boys off.

Verdict: They LOVED it! Even AJ was asking for more! It fed four of us, and they had some leftover limas on the side (a casualty of cooking on the fly...the limas were already warming as I created the asparagus dish, so I went ahead and served them anyway). When I make this again for all of us, I will probably double it, or perhaps serve it with a salad.

Let me know how you like it, and if you make any modifications!

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