Eat Happy: Pan Fried Bone-In Rib Eye

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


This week, I was both excited and scared to discover I had this recipe.  Excited because, hello, steak… not to mention I was on my period something fierce and like to eat red meat during that time.  Then there was scared, because I have never cooked a rib eye myself.  Also, after the tenderloin debacle, I worried about my grocery store tab.

All that worry for nothing, y’all.

I went to several stores and none carried truffle salt, so I decided to skip that.  My store also didn’t have a rib eye with a bone, but I decided I sure didn’t care about that.  I’ve never enjoyed cutting around a bone.

That pizza is not part of my meal.  That is for kids who only wanted pizza and have a mom who didn’t feel like dealing with it that night.  Brussels are also not in the recipe, but I felt like eating some.

Listen.  This was phenomenal and stupid easy.  So easy, that I don’t understand what took me so long to try pan-frying a steak!  I can not wait to cook steak again.

Eat Happy: Leek and Mustard Crusted Tenderloin

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


I was looking forward to this meal, because Stuart and I often treat ourselves to some tenderloin steaks on the weekend and I’ve been known to really polish some off.  I got to the grocery store and walked right up to the butcher’s counter like I own the place.  After all, I buy from there a lot.  I told the kid running the counter that I needed the 2-3 pounds of the beef tenderloin, unsliced.  He lit up when he weighed out the meat and wrapped it up.

“He must love his job.  Or maybe he loves beef,” I thought.  Oh, how naive I was.

I took my neat brown-paper-wrapped package, set it in the buggy, and glanced at the price.  Then I picked it up to inspect closer because there’s no way I was seeing the price right.

$55.  FIFTY-FIVE dollars.  For a hunk of beef.  oh, but no big since with my shopper’s card I got it for $50!

Oh boy.

Anyway, I had a brief panic attack, checking all my cards and accounts to make sure I could even buy that and the other stuff I needed, then headed home to put away my prize beef.

With the cost of the beef, the pressure to not mess it up was really freaking real.  You know what I’m saying?

I gotta say, once again, Anna did not fail me.  Her recipes are all reasonably easy to follow without fucking it up.

Honestly, the hardest part of this one was the cleanup, because not only was my blender involved, but I transferred the meat a thousand times trying to get the right pan for this project and then once done, the right platter to slice it on.  I did come to the conclusion during the process that I need a roasting pan, new knives, and some other things for the kitchen.

I could NOT get the consistency of the crust just right, nor could I get it to stick to the meat.  I have no doubt that is partially due to the fact that I made a couple of substitutions based on what was available in my pantry (after already spending so much on the meat).  It smelled amazing in the oven though and holy crap, the coating alone tastes amazing.  When I was slicing it, I was eating the pieces that fell off.  I could eat JUST that for dinner.

But listen.  I am just going to put this out there – this is a special occasion dish for us because of the cost.  I am going to venture a guess and say there are probably less expensive tenderloin options.  Mine was just extra fancy, I guess?

Now, the verdict – was it worth $50?

Abso. Freaking. Lutely.  It melted in my mouth and Stuart, who is super picky about how beef is cooked, LOVED it.  We rationed it out over 3 days to stretch our grocery budget.  I will definitely make this again for Christmas or Stuart’s birthday!

I highly recommend making this if you want to impress someone with a fancy meal!

 

Eat Happy: Coconut Crusted Shrimp

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


When I saw that I was going to be making shrimp, I was excited because I love shrimp, but I have also never actually cooked it myself, so there was some intimidation there.  After reading Ashley’s shrimp experience from last week, I was really not looking forward to peeling and deveining them.

Luckily, Kroger had the hookup.  Sure, they were more expensive, but it was a price I was willing to pay to avoid that nasty task.

I was expecting this to be a stressful meal to make, just out of shear intimidation.  However, I poured some tequila, turned on the music, and got to it.

Like pretty much all recipes where you bread or crust something, the most frustrating part was when the coating starts to get super wet and no longer sticks to shrimp.  In other coated foods, I have started doubling the coating so that when the first batch gets wet, I can use the second.  Just a tip for you.

I honestly can’t believe how overall easy this was to cook and how delightful the taste was.  I feel like it’s a dish that I can impress company with, but at the same time, my 4-year-old loved it.

Would absolutely make this again, and kinda can’t wait!

Eat Happy: Almond Crusted Baked Cod

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


When I realized that I was making fish again, I took a deep breath before remembering that Anna Vocino hasn’t steered us wrong yet.  I was definitely excited to go back to the fancy ass Kroger to get the fish, so it made it fun.

I will admit, to save some money and frustration, I took a few liberties with this recipe.  I already had almond flour, but no almond meal as the recipe calls for.  I looked at Kroger but they didn’t have any, so I decided to just roll with the flour rather than make another stop.  Instead of chopping fresh chives, I used lightly dried ones.  And shallots?  I’m not entirely sure what those are because I always just add more garlic instead.

Is there anything more satisfying than a big hunk of good butter melting in a pan?

Yes, there is.  It’s garlic sautéing in said butter. *drool*

Sometime in the middle of cooking, I sat down my champagne glass and it barely tapped the handle of the coffeemaker.  Unfortunately, that broke the glass.  I’m still not sure if I’m more upset about the glass being broken or the champagne wastage.

I have to say, this was the least stressful meal I’ve made from Eat Happy in quite awhile!  It was quick and easy to prepare and well, tasty as fuck.

I served the fish with tomato slices marinated in balsamic vinegar and topped with mozzarella, baked and and finished with a quick broil.  Delicious!

Eat Happy: Pistachio Crusted Coriander Salmon

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?

I was, to put it mildly, not excited about making this meal.  I am super intimidated by cooking fish and I just don’t eat a lot of seafood in general.  In addition to that, I abhor pistachios.  Cool.

My stores that I frequent most often are Target and Walmart – solely because they are behind my neighborhood.  It’s quick, easy, affordable, and I know where everything is in the store.  They don’t have fresh seafood departments though.  To be honest, I am not sure I would have gone through with heading over to Kroger to get salmon if not for the fact that I was wanting to try their store brand seltzer water.  Motivated by my favorite Tito’s mixers, I headed on over.  I got the salmon and the goddamn pistachios, along with the (expensive-ish) spices that I didn’t have at home.

At home, I had to talk myself into jumping in.  The absolute worst part of the entire process was the beginning – shelling the pistachios.  I put on a training video I was wanting to watch and got after it.

There was some gagging over the fact that I was going to eat pistachios and that there was fucking skin involved in the fish.

Let me just tell you though – when the fish started baking, it smelled absolutely amazing.  The kids kept asking me what the great smell was.  They still had no interest in eating it, mind you.

Well… turns out it tasted just as amazing as it smelled.  Once again, the anticipation was much worse than the actual process and result.

That being said, I’ll substitute with another nut next time, because fuck pistachios.

 

 

My Healthy Kitchen: Top 5 Essentials

Happy Friday!  As it has been mentioned before, I eat in a way that is low carb.  To perfectly define it, it’s No Sugar No Grains (NSNG as coined by celebrity trainer and fitness guru Vinnie Tortorich).  There are so many tools and foods that I keep on hand at all times.  Today I am sharing with you my top 5 essentials.

Bacon

You either love bacon or you’re wrong.  We eat a ton in our household.  Here’s the thing – bacon makes everything better so it’s the ultimate source for fat and protein, which are extremely important in my lifestyle.  Wrap anything in bacon, eat it solo, or use it as a dipper.  It’s a must.  We buy these gigantic packages at Sam’s Club.

Heavy Whipping Cream

Another way to get in some fat and calories is adding a splash of this to my coffee in the morning.  If I am on the go and unable to eat all day, another cup of coffee with this helps me make it through.  Not only that, but it makes a great thickener for sauces and is an essential for a cheese dip.  A little goes a long way and I’m a fan!

Cold Brew

I like to start my day with a cup of hot coffee, but afternoons if I have coffee, I love a good cold brew.  It’s SO easy to make at home that I highly recommend you grabbing a cold brewer.  I have this one.  It’s super hipster looking, but it’s easy to use.

Salt

My preference is Himalayan Pink Salt, freshly ground over my food.  however, I also take a few whole salt crystals sometimes, washed down like pills.  When you are a low carb eater, you need to supplement with salt.  It’s honestly like a vitamin or medication for me.  Without it, I’m miserable.

Unsweetened Sparkling Waters

Whether the brand is LaCroix, Ozarka, Bubly, Polar, Aquafina, Dasani, or any other…. I drink several a day and always have an assortment of flavors.  A few go into the fridge for drinking straight and the others go into the pantry for mixing with distilled liquors.  I love that they pair well with any liquor.  They are also amazing for settling my stomach when I am hungover or when I had a stomach virus.

There you have it, the five things that I absolutely can NOT live without in my kitchen.  What are yours?

 

 

 

Eat Happy: Cauliflower Pizza Crust

 

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series (that was publishing every Tuesday and has moved to Thursdays) wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We started with the very first recipe and are working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?

 

When I ended up being assigned the Cauliflower Pizza Crust, I admit I was not excited.  Making my own crust has never been appealing to me in the first place, which is why I either skip pizza or buy a ready-made Mikey’s crust.  However, this entire series is about trying new things, so I dove in…and by dove in, I mean whined and agonized over the fact that I needed to buy and food-process cauliflower and squeeze out all the moisture.

I don’t own a food processor and my Ninja blender typically does just fine.  however, it didn’t quite get the cauliflower to the texture it called for.  I forged ahead anyway.

My favorite part of the process was sipping Tito’s as the kids and I gagged over the putrid smell of cauliflower cooking.  ACK.  This is the point where I said it smelled like ass, rotten ass, and Quentin stated, “and rotten ass is the worst ass.”

I knew I didn’t get enough of the moisture out when it just wouldn’t really bind together.  As I was mixing the dough with my hands, I could fell water squishing.  Oops.

I had forgotten to buy traditional pizza toppings, which I prefer to use when I am trying a new crust.  However, I went ahead and used leftover roast and some BBQ sauce.

I gotta say, the texture was all wrong, as in it fell the fuck apart and was chunky (yay for not pulsing enough and having too much water), but it didn’t taste bad.  It did taste like cauliflower because, you know, that’s like 80% of the content.  I won’t make it again (unless manufacturers start making cauliflower dust in the freezer section), but I can almost see why people eat it.

 

Eat Happy : Cheese Ball

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Tuesday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


So first time for everything? I had to skip the Hummus that was actually scheduled for this week. Why? Because I waited til last minute and couldn’t find tahini anywhere. Don’t worry – I’m circling back and doing it next week! 🙂

Any who… to the cheese ball!

I feel like we say this every time, but this was super easy to make. The hardest part was the little bit of arm muscle that was required for mixing it all up with a spatula.

Because I was doing this last minute – I was a little concerned when I read that the ball needed to rest and set in the fridge for three house. I didn’t have that kind of time. Soo, like any battle worn procrastinator would do – I came up with an alternative and effective solution. I wrapped that bad boy in parchment paper and put it in the freezer for an hour (ish).

Some things I changed? I used red pepper flakes instead of cayenne powder. I also got to this point of chopping my onion –

And was lamenting the fact that I’d have to chop it up so finely when I suddenly remembered how much I hate raw onion. So – I substituted with onion powder. 🙂

I also partly burnt my almond silvers shortly after taking this picture. They weren’t a total loss and still very usable. Why did I burn them? Kids man. Kids. They called me away to do something…and I came back to partially burnt almonds. But really – let’s be honest: I probably still would have burnt them without a kid interruption.

I was really pleased with the end product. It tasted amazing and looked half decent. I cut off a chunk and plopped it on top of my bowl of roast that I was eating for dinner….and it was soooooo yummy. But obviously you could spread this on some veggies or almond meal pita chips or pork rinds – but if you have some roast handy…consider trying that combination. 🙂

Thank you guys so much for reading along! And as with all the recipes in Eat Happy – this one is grain and sugar free. Good in your mouth and good for your body!


Want to read our other Eat Happy posts? Here’s a handy dandy list for ya:

Eat Happy: Mango Salsa

Eat Happy: Bacon Wrapped Dates

Eat Happy: Broccoli Dip

Eat Happy: Goat Cheese Stuffed Mini Peppers

Eat Happy: Kale Chips & Deviled Eggs with Greek Yogurt

Eat Happy: Cheese Biscuits

Eat Happy: Sausage Stuffed Mushroom

Eat Happy: Tzatziki Dip & Almond Meal Pita Chips

Eat Happy: Super Guac! & Smoked Salmon w/ Coconut Flour Blini

Eat Happy: Prosciutto Wrapped Peaches & Cheese Crisps

Eat Happy: Mango Salsa

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Tuesday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?

When I realized I was going to be making mango salsa, I gotta tell you – I was not excited and made a face for sure.  I don’t love mango.  Okay, I actually can’t stand mango.  I like mango flavored cocktails and stuff, but biting into a chunk of mango?  Naw.

I definitely wasn’t about to peel and cut up a mango, so I took the lazy and more expensive route and skipped that step.

This recipe is seriously as simple as cut up some shit and toss it into a blender.  I mean, it really doesn’t get any easier than that, especially when you’re lazy and buy as much stuff pre-chopped as possible.

It took me probably 10 minutes to make this, including setting up the blender and chopping the ingredients.  It really smelled and looked good, so I had high hopes that it would also taste good.

I am pleased to say, it is DELICIOUS and I did not feel like I was going to gag on a mango!  YAY!

Such a light and refreshing treat for these warm Texas days.  I had some of it on pork rinds then turned it into a lunch by rolling some into turkey and cheese.

This also made a huge jar of salsa and I am looking forward to enjoying a little of it here and there and mostly seeing Stuart enjoy it, since I typically don’t eat fruit and tomatoes anymore.

Do you like mango?  Do you make homemade salsas?  This is a great variety!

Eat Happy : Chicken Queso Dip

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Tuesday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?



Hey Hey! 🙂 Today’s post is all about Anna’s Chicken Queso Dip. Let me just say that I was super excited to make and eat this. It’s got my most favorite ingredients: chicken, spicy peppers, and cheese. What’s not to love?

This was probably one of the MOST simple things I’ve made since we began this journey of cooking through Eat Happy which is saying a lot because the recipes in this book are generally not complicated. I love that. Cause cooking is not my favorite thing to do…so the less steps the better.

The dip did not disappoint me. It was super yummy, and made the perfect dinner. I used some pork rinds and extra crispy bacon to scoop it up with. Easy peasy peeps.

While this dip would be great to make on any week night for your family, I think that it would make a great addition to any party or get together.

And I mean really, that’s all I have to say about this fabulous dip! Go get yourself this cook book and start treating your body to some yummy meals that are grain free and sugar free. I promise you’ll feel and look amazing. 🙂

Until next time!


If you want to read through our other Eat Happy posts…I’ve got them all lined up for ya!

Eat Happy: Bacon Wrapped Dates

Eat Happy: Broccoli Dip

Eat Happy: Goat Cheese Stuffed Mini Peppers

Eat Happy: Kale Chips & Deviled Eggs with Greek Yogurt

Eat Happy: Cheese Biscuits

Eat Happy: Sausage Stuffed Mushroom

Eat Happy: Tzatziki Dip & Almond Meal Pita Chips

Eat Happy: Super Guac! & Smoked Salmon w/ Coconut Flour Blini

Eat Happy: Prosciutto Wrapped Peaches & Cheese Crisps