Thursday, March 4, 2010

Taco Skillet

This was one of our favorite recipes before we started GAPS. We loved it because it only requires dirtying one pan, it makes great left overs. You can fill tortillas with it, put in on a salad, or make nachos out of it as a second meal. I finally figured out how to adapt it and it has become a weekly staple. Discovering that cauliflower can be shredded and used like rice has opened the door to new meals like this as well as Turkey Hash and Chicken Fried Rice

Here is the original recipe (not GAPS legal)

1 pound ground beef
1 envelope (1 1/4 ounces) taco seasoning mix
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup thick and chunky salsa
1 cup frozen whole kernel corn
1 1/2 cups uncooked instant brown rice
3/4 cup shredded taco-seasoned cheese ( 4 ounces)
1 cup shredded lettuce
1 medium tomato, chopped
sour cream, if desired

1. Cook beef in 10-inch skillet over medium heat 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until brown; drain
2. Stir in seasoning mix, water, salsa and corn. Heat to boiling; stir in rice. Boil 1 minute remove from heat. Cover and let stand 8 minutes .
3. Fluff rice mixture with fork; sprinkle with cheese. Cover and let stand 1 to 2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle lettuce around edge of skillet; sprinkle tomato in circle next to lettuce. Serve with sour cream and tortilla chips.

GAPS legal recipe
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion finely chopped
2-4 Tbsp of fat/oil for sauteing (olive, coconut, lard, tallow, ghee)
1 large head of cauliflower (this will be used as a rice substitute)
2 Tbsp of chili powder
1-2 tsp. of ground cumin
1-2 tsp. of garlic powder (eliminated for us because of Grayson's allergy)
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 to 1 whole bag of frozen pepper strips (from Trader Joe's)
Handful of broccoli broken into small pieces
1-2 cups of homemade chicken, turkey, or beef stock

1. Cut the core and large stems from head of cauliflower, discard. Wash cauliflower chunks.
2. Shred cauliflower in food processor or with a grater. We used the VitaMix and it is awesome!
3. Saute the onion in skillet with the fat/oil until translucent but not browned.
4. Add ground beef and cook until browned
5. Add seasonings while cooking beef
6. Once beef is cooked, add 1 cup of stock, shredded cauliflower, and frozen peppers
7. Saute until cauliflower rice is soft, adding more stock to keep from drying out
8. Add broccoli in the last few minutes of cooking just to soften
9. Cook until the liquid has evaporated and cauliflower rice is soft and caramelized

Why my friends ROCK!

I have been overwhelmed lately by the outpouring of love to our family. Last week, two women from our church made and froze 30+ hamburger buns for us to keep on hand. We use tons of these in place of bread for sandwiches, hamburgers, etc. You can read Maddie's comments about cooking for us with her mom on her blog.

Yesterday, Maddie came over for about 5 hours and we cooked all kinds of stuff. She helped me experiment with some GAPS cupcake recipes to come up with one that is sweetened without honey (we are having bad reactions to this) or Stevia (Stevia has a funny taste). We have a wedding next weekend so I need a cupcake to bring as a wedding cake replacement for the kids.

Two days ago a friend in the church went to Whole Foods for us and made a much needed grocery run.

Last week one friend sent me a lengthy card with tons of encouragement and love. She then followed up with emails.

For the last three weeks, my cousin has cooked large batches of staple food items for us to freeze and have on hand.

Last week my wonderful friend threw me a surprise party. She invited five other women and they showered me with love. All the women contributed to a GAPS friendly dinner and dessert. While we enjoyed our ginger tea and pumpkin meringue the women went around and shared answers to prepared questions about what they valued and saw in me. It was humbling and overwhelmingly wonderful. The point was to communicate to me that they are "for me" and in my corner during this trying season.

I know there are other ways people have loved us that I am forgetting.

I am in a season of feeling like I have been stripped of everything. It has been painful (physically and emotionally) but it has been the richest season of my life. Our God is more than enough to fill me when I feel empty.

We sang in a hymn last week: "Empty handed, but alive in His hands" That is a perfect description of how I feel right now. I wouldn't have asked for it, but I am grateful.