Cooking with Kayla

I’m sorry I only posted once last week. I was busy reading instead of writing. But now, I have a lot to write about, so hunker down for story time.

A few things you should know about me.

  • I am 23 years old.
  • I lived at home for almost two years after college.
  • My mom cooked almost all of my meals for me.
  • She’s an excellent chef

    When I moved out on my own in October, I had to teach myself how to cook. Now, I make it sound like I had no idea what to do in the kitchen. It wasn’t that bad. Mostly, I liked making really easy, basic, low-maintence meals. The paleo lifestyle, isn’t really all about low-maintence meals. Paleo cooking can sometimes be pretty labor intensive, time consuming, and very involved. And here I am teaching myself how to do it all. What a grown up I’ve become. Anyways, it’s always an event when I cook here in the apartment. My roommate and I haven’t decided if it is because I’m not a very experienced chef, because I’m super excitable, or just because we have a tiny apartment kitchen so it just seems like a big deal because there is a ton of stuff flying everywhere in such a small space. Whatever the reason, I tend to be pretty entertaining when I’m cooking. One time, after making a successful meal, I once shouted at my roommate that I was a“magician.” My roommate is pretty much the best for putting up with me and my kitchen shenanigans.

So now that I’ve painted this awesome picture for you of my kitchen personality let me share some of what I’ve been making recently.

Friday night, Jacob came to visit, and he said he’d like to have chicken pot pie for dinner. Being the awesome girlfriend that I am, I scoured the internet for recipes, and came across this seemingly simple yet delicious chicken pot pie recipe. It was fabulous! I made a few alterations because I wanted a more traditional tasting pot pie, but for the most part I stuck to her recipe. I’ll list my alterations below…

  • I used a rotisserie chicken because I was pressed for time. Not sure how big it was, but it was the whole bird. I basically just pulled off all of the skin and plucked the meat into tiny pieces.
  • I used celery, carrots, onions, and peas (not paleo but they are accepted on the whole life challenge right now)
  • I used a miniature food processor. I recommend using a normal sized one for the crust, but it was all I had at the time.

Issues I had:

  • I didn’t really measure my veggies; I just used them all, so I had a ton of filling. Follow her measurements, you’ll be set.
  • The baking container I used was not big enough for my filling, so it was almost overflowing.
  • I would recommend putting the ball of dough in the fridge for ~30 minutes if you have time. I only did mine for 5 and it was still kind of “sticky.”
  • It also didn’t go very well when I tried to top the filling with the crust because when the crust hit the liquid of the filling it immediately disintegrated. BUMMER!
  • Also, I definitely had to bake mine for a lot longer than 20 minutes. I think it was in the oven for more like 45 minutes. maybe more

Despite all of that (those are pretty usual obstacles for me though) it turned out REALLY well. It was really yummy, and we had about 6ish servings from it.

Breakfast the next morning was an experiment too. I had been dreaming up a recipe of a “breakfast bowl” with eggs, bacon, and sweet potato hash. We weren’t really sure how to do the sweet potato hash, so we just kind of went for it. I like potato “gems” the best, so Jacob took the time to cut the sweet potatoes into tiny pieces for me – so sweet.

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 4 eggs – scrambled
  • 4 pieces of bacon
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil
  3. Arrange bacon
  4. Cook for 10-12 minutes
  1. Peel sweet potatoes
  2. Slice into discs
  3. Cube slices
  4. Chop onion
  5. Add coconut oil to a medium sized skillet, and heat over medium heat
  6. Add sweet potato gems and chopped onion
  7. Cook until potatoes are soft; approximately 15 minutes
  1. Scramble eggs in a bowl
  2. Scramble over medium heat

The grand finale: dice bacon and combine all ingredients into a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Voila!

Sunday rolled around and unfortunately, Jacob had to head home Worst part about a long distance relationship = saying good-bye.

I usually cope by cooking up a storm, so I’ll have all of my meals ready freddy for the following week. Here’s the line up:

Spoiler alert for a post to come later this week: I bought a new food processor on Sunday. I decided to upgrade from my baby 1-cup processor to a 3 cup processor with more speeds and functions! YES!!! I’ll review it along with a few other items that I bought from my wish list.

I made it through the meatloaf just fine. Then, I was getting ready to start on the egg muffins. I washed the new food processor to get rid of all of the germies. I was drying it off and excited to get processing when, OOPS! I sliced the side of my thumb on the blade 😦 My first paleo cooking related injury. It really wasn’t that bad, I’ve just never experienced a kitchen injury before, so I was just kind of surprised and annoyed that it interrupted my cooking train. Can’t keep me down for long though, I tied a baby tourniquet ’round my thumb (once it stopped bleeding, of course) and kept on trucking.

#cookingthroughthepain

#cookingthroughthepain

Breakfast Egg Muffins for one

Since I cook for myself during the week, I make meals so they last me all week. Now, paleo egg muffins are all over the internet. I’ve tried lots of recipes. These two are definitely my favorite and the inspirations for mine.

PaleOMG On-The-Go Egg Bites *These are awesome because of the sweet potatoes and her cooking video is hilarious!

Everyday Paleo Egg Cupcakes

Having made each of these recipes multiple times, I just tried to adapt the ratios and ingredients a little bit to come up with egg muffins that are perfect for me.eggs + veggies

Ingredients:

  • 6 Organic, free-range, Omega-3 eggs
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 6 smalls peppers (I used yellow, red, and orange)
  • 1/2 pound of pork sausage (I buy a pound, use half then freeze the other half for next week)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Pre-heat over to 350 degrees
  2. Grease a muffin tin, or line with silicone baking cups
  3. Brown sausage in a skillet over medium heat; set aside
  4. Chop peppers and run through the food processor; set aside
  5. Run spinach through the food processor
  6. Crack eggs into a medium sized mixing bowl; whisk
  7. Add peppers, spinach, and sausage to the egg mixture.
  8. Season with salt and pepper
  9. Stir until well incorporated
  10. Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to scoop out the mixture and pour into muffin tin wells
  11. Bake for 25 minutes.

Makes 10; 2 a day for each day of the work week!

Another exciting event from this weekend: I found an almond butter grinder-machine-thing at Harris Teeter that grinds the almonds right in front of you in this fancy machine to make almond butter. It was so cool! I should have taken a video, but these awesome pictures will have to do. It’s super yummy, I will definitely be doing that again soon!

Have a happy week everyone!

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