Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Beef and Cauliflower Soup

We have been trying to follow a Paleo/Primal diet for a while. It started when our first daughter and I had a stubborn case of thrush and a holistic nutritionist I met said that dietary changes were the only way we were going to kick it for good. We have fallen off the wagon several times, but we notice that we feel better when we cut back on grains and other starchy foods.

Well with a new baby at home, I was very focused on quick easy meals that our toddler would eat with us. We relied on pasta more than I'd like to admit, and the times that we did get the paleo style meals I hoped for, it was pretty boring. Everything was pan fried or steamed because I didn't want to turn the oven  on during the Phoenix summer, and not much seasoning. Just some type of meat or fish and two vegetables and repeat.

I happened on The 30 Day Guide to Paleo Cooking by Hayley Mason and Bill Staley at the library. We started cooking our way through it and really enjoyed it. It includes meal plans and shopping lists which I love (I've always been a sucker for those), and the food tastes great. My one complaint is that I don't like the mix of meals. We are talking about cooking our way through it again, but I think I will rewrite the meal plans and shopping lists so that you don't end up with a bunch of beef one week, lots of fish the next, or lots of greens followed by only white and yellow veggies, etc. I'll be sure to share my rewritten meal plans and shopping lists with you.

One of the recipes we recently tried was for Bison Stew. We had to use beef because our Meat Shop didn't have any bison stew meat. The results were delicious. I love the combination of beef broth and cauliflower. It tastes so rich and decadent. Yum!

Beef and Cauliflower Soup (based on The Food Lovers Kitchen)

2 lbs. beef stew meat
1 T coconut oil
1 onion, chopped
3 stalks of celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
6 cups of beef broth
3 sprigs of thyme
3 sprigs of rosemary
1 head of cauliflower, broken into small florets
fermented sauerkraut
salt and pepper to taste

Brown the meat in the coconut oil in a large Dutch oven. Remove the meat from the pan. Add the onion, celery and carrots and cook until the onions are translucent. Add the meat and broth to the pot.  Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 5-6 hours, adding the cauliflower for the last hour of cooking. Top with sauerkraut and serve.

This post is part of Alphabe-Thursday, Full Plate Thursday and Frugal Food Thursday.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Pretending It's Fall

I don't know if you've heard, but Phoenix is really hot. I'm talking about 118 degrees for most of the week after our daughter was born in June. But the extreme temperatures aren't the worst part of it, the worst part is how long the heat lasts. The monotony of hot and sunny weather day after day really gets old. Now this might seem like a lame complaint while parts of the country are already facing snow, but we had a high of 95 degrees  last week. That's just ridiculous for the middle of November. I've started to wear jeans and long sleeve shirts in order to feel like the weather is changing. I've also started to make some roasts and soups (more relevant to discussions here) to have a change of pace from the salads and lighter meals we favor during the summer.

We had a delicious brisket last week as part of my effort to celebrate fall through fashion and food. In addition to working well for fall, it requires very little hands-on prep, and one cooking session prepared a couple of meals. Both qualities that I look for in a meal these days with a two year old and four month old running and rolling around. We got the recipe out of The 30 Day Guide to Paleo Cooking, but I have included an on-line link for the recipe.

Fall Brisket (from The Food Lovers Kitchen)

2 yellow onions, chopped
5 lb beef brisket
dried basil
1 can tomato sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spread onion in baking pan. Generously sprinkle salt, pepper, basil and oregano over both sides of the brisket. Place the meat on the onions. Bake for 1 hour uncovered. Sprinkle additional basil and oregano and pour the tomato sauce over the brisket. Bake for 4 more hours, flipping halfway through.

Let rest and then thinly slice, and serve with sauce spooned over the top.

This post is part of Gluten Free Wednesdays, WFMW and Allergy Free Wednesdays.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Back in the Saddle

Well, it has been over a year since my last post... Of course as soon as I told the world we were starting to get our act together, we were thrown a curve ball. Surprise, baby number two was on it's way! Now baby number two is four months old, and we feel like we are hitting our stride, we'll give this revitalize the blog thing another go...

Stay tuned for cooking, parenting, gardening... and whatever else strikes our fancy.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Thanks to everyone who sent us lovely notes. It was nice to know that our friends out in cyberspace were thinking of us. My father passed away in the beginning of April. I miss him terribly.

 My husband and I decided that it would be best to move to Phoenix, AZ to spend some time with my mom. This was our second big move in the first year of our daughter's life, and we are still not settled. New York City to Boston to Phoenix, a baby, and two deaths in the family... it takes a while.

We are working to find a way to live sustainably in this desert metropolis. Stay tuned for our efforts.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Family Time

City Share will be taking a break for some family time. My father is very ill, and we are out in AZ to spend time with him. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Making Liquid Gold (aka Delicious, Clear Chicken Stock)

We have been trying to incorporate more and more chicken stock into our diet, but it can be hard to keep up our supply. I came across a post by Jenny over at Nourished Kitchen in which she talked about her method for perpetual bone broth. She actually cooks the same set of bones for a week in her slow cooker removing broth each day and adding more water. She is able to get a half gallon of broth from one set of bones from a roasted chicken. That was amazing to me! We only have a small slow cooker and it seems to cook pretty hot even on the low setting, so I didn't think we could get a week out of it, but decided to try a couple of days.

Our slow cooker is so small that I couldn't fit the chicken carcass in at first (it was frozen). I put it on the stove for a few hours and then transferred it to the slow cooker. I cooked the first batch for 24 hours, removed most of the broth and  then added more water. I cooked the second batch another 24 hours. After the second batch, the bones easily crumbled when I pinched them, so I decided to call it quits. I was pleased that we were able to double our normal supply of chicken broth from one set of bones.

Another tip from Jenny that I thought was genius- straining the broth through a reusable coffee filter to create clear broth.  I first poured the broth through a colander to remove the large pieces of bones and cartilage. Then I used our travel drip coffee maker and a circle of cotton fabric (our reusable coffee filter) to filter out the fine particles. The results were a beautiful, clear chicken stock. By using the portable drip coffee maker, I was able to filter it right into glass jars to freeze.

How do you make chicken stock or bone broth? What tips do you have to pass along?

This post is part of Pennywise Platter Thursday, Frugal Food Thursday, Alphabe-Thursday, and Simple Lives Thursday.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Indian Style Kale

We spent last weekend in New York City. We moved from New York City to Boston in December, and have been feeling homesick. It was amazing how we just fell right back into our old neighborhood. It almost felt like we had never left. This was a much needed break from other things going on, plus a trip to celebrate our upcoming wedding anniversary and my birthday at the end of the month.

Now, back at our new home we are continuing our efforts to eat lots of greens. We are trying to get at least one big serving of greens at dinner each night, but this can quickly become boring . So I have been keeping an eye out for different way to prepare collard greens, kale, chard and spinach. I was pleased to find a recipe for Kale Saag over at Not Eating Out in New York. It looked like a great new way to make kale. We simplified her recipe just a little bit because we are all about easy these days. It has great flavor. Kale can be tough and chewy, but this recipe blends it into a smooth texture. (I was toying with the idea of calling it Kale Mush for Grown-Ups, but decided that might not be a hit.) This recipe is vegan, but it would be good made with some chicken stock added instead of the cooking water, or some cream at the end.

Indian Style Kale inspired by Not Eating Out in NY
2 large bunches of kale, chopped with the stems removed
3 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 t dry ginger
1/2 t turmeric
1/2 t coriander
1/2 t cumin
1/4 t cayenne
1/4 t mustard

Simmer kale for 20 minutes. While the kale is simmering, heat oil over medium heat and add the onions. Cook until the onions are softened and add the spices. Cook for 2 minutes and then turn off the heat. Drain the kale and reserve 2 cups of cooking water. Place the greens in the food processor with 1 cup of water. Blend until smooth adding more water if necessary. Add the blended kale into the pot with the onions and spices. Bring everything to a boil. Serve hot.
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