Eat Happy : Southwest Style Burgers

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 excited to make this one… because who doesn’t love a burger? I know I sure do! 🙂

As always, this recipe was uncomplicated and not surprisingly, I had all the ingredients for this particular one on hand! To say I enjoy southwest flavors is an understatement. They are in regular rotation when it comes to meals I eat.

My least favorite part about making burgers? The getting your hands down in the meat and squishing it around to mix all the ingredients and then form the patties. Anyone else feel the same way??

I pan fried these to get a nice sear on the outside and then stuck them in the oven to finish up.

I think they turned out freaking delicious – and I don’t know why this was my first time making this particular recipe! I’ve for sure been missing out.

I added a fried egg to go along with my burger patties…and it was the perfect compliment. For sure don’t mess up this delicious burger with a bun. It’s unnecessary and would totally screw up that whole “no sugar no grains” thing I’ve got going on when it comes to what I eat! 😉

What do you guys think? Have you ever had a southwest style burger?

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.

 

 

Eat Happy: Sesame Crusted Seared Ahi

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?


So, I was super intimidated when I realized that I’d be cooking this recipe. Mainly because I’ve never ever cooked tuna. Ok so all because I’ve never ever cooked tuna. My only experience with tuna besides the stuff that comes in the can was eating it on sushi.

I was also very much so prepared to dislike this. Spoiler alert: I was very much wrong about that. 😉

I literally stood in front of the oven with my arms crossed staring at the tuna while it seared thinking – ” this is going to be so gross.” LOL Like a child!

The thing is – I’m just not into big slabs of meat. And then the idea of the texture of raw tuna on the inside that was part of a big slab of meat. All that had my brain going, “No thank you ma’am.” I’ve had raw tuna on sushi, but it was sliced super thin.

One thing this recipe had that I was SUPER excited about was the wasabi paste. I love wasabi paste. I’ll eat as much of it as I can handle, because the flavor is just phenomenal to me. I ended up adding some extra paste to my soy sauce for dipping which took the whole dish to another level for me. Anna suggests that you dip the finished tuna in soy sauce which is good in and of itself. BUT if you like wasabi paste like me…whisk a big dallop of that into your soy sauce for some extra yumminess.

This is a great substitute for conventional soy sauce. You can get it from Amazon. 

I totally overcooked my tuna, cause I was being extra cautious. It still tasted pretty dang delicious in my opinion! Going into this I definitely thought this would just be a one time dish for me – but after trying it, I can confidently say I will for sure be making this again!

This was such a yummy meal and as always I could feel great about putting it into my body because there are no sugars or grains in it!

What about y’all..do any of you have Eat Happy and have made this recipe? What about tuna steaks in general? Any big fans out there? What’s your favorite way to cook them?


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

 

Eat Happy: Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Eat Happy: Ultimate Low Carb Pizza Crust

Eat Happy : Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Eat Happy : Cheese Ball

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: 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 : Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

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?


Sooo, if you read last week’s installment of Eat Happy – then you already knew hummus was on the agenda for today.

And here we are…about to dive into some hummus. 🙂 I love hummus. I don’t eat it too often, but when it is in my fridge – it doesn’t last long. I’ll put it on just about anything. It’s like. The perfect condiment.

This was MY first experience with making hummus. I’ve seen my dad do it tons of times, but I just always opted for buying the best and most clean version of hummus that I could find at the grocery store. I can tell you though – after actually making this hummus…I won’t be buying any pre-made store brand hummus again.  It was crazy easy to do and soooo much better! Which I mean, is not a revolutionary concept. Most of the time the things you make at home taste better than the store bought version.  I’m just always surprised when I can make something that tastes so good…cause I have minimal talent in the kitchen. 😉

I have a mini food processor / blender contraption so I had to cut the recipe in half and make it in two batches which was also incredibly easy to do. All the amounts split evenly. {{insert all the praise hands for easy maths}}

So, I made the hummus then stashed it in the fridge to let it chill and set and get more yummy while I bathed and put the kids to bed. Then, I just wasn’t feeling eating hummus. I had some left over cheesy bread ( aka low carb pizza crust with melted cheese on top) and homemade marinara calling my name. However, I had blogger duties to attend to.

As you can see above – IDK why I even doubted my desire for hummus. That ish was so good. I ate it standing over the counter while pulling my baby carrots from their bag like a real classy gal.

I ended up having to stop myself from consuming way to many carrots and hummus. Cheesy bread be damned   –  apparently. 🙂

There you have it! Some easy peasy and delicious roasted red pepper hummus from Eat Happy. You need to get your hands on this cook book. It will feed your soul and body with only the good things that are grain and sugar free.


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

Eat Happy : Cheese Ball

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