Apple and Spice Meatballs

 AppleandSpiceMeatballs2

 Hey folks!  These apple and spice meatballs have been a joke around this house.  I had a hard time getting them right!  No worries though.  I work hard for you making sure this stuff tastes good.  So, the hubby has been eating a lot of meatballs.  Finally, I present to you the finished product.  They are yummy.  Spicy and comforting.  I think they would make a good meatloaf as well.  Throw some tomato sauce on top, bake it and let me know how it turns out.

I had a super busy weekend which is the way I like it.  My kids went to Moms for the weekend (yay!) so I crammed as much grownup activity in as possible. 

First, the Dallas Marathon is this coming weekend.  Almost all of us are running in it so we have a taper week.  That means you cool it a little and let the legs rest.  I’m doing the half marathon so by cooling it a little we ran 13 miles.  It was supposed to be 12 but I was running my mouth and missed a turn.  We finished the run with mimosas.  Nothing like running and drinking before 8am to get your blood flowing!

SummerandMattXmasPartyThen I spent the day with the hubby Christmas shopping, and Christmas partying.  Man!  I had another mimosa at lunch.  Bad Summer!  (I’ll be reminded of those drinks during our 10 mile speed work session tomorrow.)  Hubbies’ office Christmas party was Saturday night.  It was fun to put on something besides sporty spice clothes.

Then Sunday night we had our annual Pavement Pounders Christmas party.  Can I say again how much I love my little running family?  They are a crazy bunch.  We got together for food and a gift exchange.  Really, we got together for food I think.

PPXmasPartyHere’s the thing.  All weekend I was a good little Paleo girl.  Besides the two mimosas I had it totally under control.  Omelets for breakfast.  Meat and veggies at the restaurants.  No dessert at the party.  Go me huh? Nope.  Those dang running buddies ruined it all!  Sunday night we had enough food to feed 70 people.  I am not exaggerating!  I took Paleo dishes but I stuffed my face with all of the other stuff.  Bad.  One “cheat” meal won’t kill me but if I can be honest I am kicking myself for eating THAT much in one sitting.  Dang hungry runners.  Don’t let their size fool you!  

See that girl bottom row smack in the middle?  That’s Sarah.  She’s kind of our leader.  She started the Pavement Pounder group and tries her best to keep us organized.  She also has a great blog, how my world runs, and is my sort of blog mentor.  Go check her page out!  You can blame her if I’m doing this all wrong…just kidding guys…

Apple and Spice Meatballs
Beef meatballs with a sweet and spicy kick.
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Ingredients
  1. 1.5 lbs. ground beef
  2. 1/2 apple diced small (skin included)
  3. 1/2 onion diced small
  4. whole jalapeno minced (seeds removed if you want it less spicy)
  5. 1 tsp. granulated garlic
  6. 11/2 tsp. salt and pepper each
  7. 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  8. 2 tbsp. ground flax seed
  9. 1 egg
  10. 4 tbsp. tomato sauce
  11. 1 tbsp. avocado oil
Instructions
  1. In a large mixing bowl combine all ingredients. Use your hands to mix ingredients well.
  2. Heat avocado oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  3. Form into one inch balls.
  4. Add meatballs to heated skillet one by one making sure not to overcrowd the pan. You will have to cook in batches.
  5. Depending on your stovetop you may need to adjust the heat. If the outside is cooking too fast turn heat down.
  6. Cook meatballs on all sides until done. They can be finished in oven if desired.
Notes
  1. Eat the meatballs alone or top with your favorite Paleo topping. We actually used the tomato sauce left in the can. That alone was great.
Cut The Grain http://cutthegrain.com/

Let’s Talk Paleo Beginnings and Shepard’s Pie

 
I’ve made a few posts now and you’re kind of getting to know me.  So far you know I like to eat and I like to run and I like to talk about them.  I’ve told you a lot about my workouts but I haven’t said much about the Paleo diet and how it works for me.  So let’s discuss, shall we?  Oh man, this will take me a couple of posts…

Oh, and I have a delicious Shepard’s Pie recipe for you today.  It’s even taste test approved by someone who doesn’t eat Paleo.

If you haven’t read my “About” page I’ll give you a short recap.  My husband and I were both overweight, he got diagnosed with diabetes in 2010, we had to get our act together.  Actually, I thought I was ok.  I started going to the gym because I had these two baby boys.  I wanted to teach them how to be healthy and not follow in our footsteps. 

SummerBefore

Here’s the dreaded “Before” Picture

Mattbefore

His is even worse!

 
After his diagnosis we went to a nutritionist and paid her a lot of money.  She told him to eat lots of whole grains and fruit and low fat business.  Well, I’m sure that works for a lot of people.  Everyone is different.  However, the advice she gave, did not help him.  Who knew that all of those carbs would raise his blood sugar?  Hmmm?

 Moving on, Matt, my hubby over there, had a friend who had done a lot of research on the Paleo diet.  He let us borrow the book, The Primal Blueprint, and the rest is history.

Matt went cold turkey, hit the diet and exercise hard and lost a bunch of weight.  I was different.  I did it slow and steady.  I knew that bread was bad so I stopped eating sandwiches.  Then I would cut out other stuff a little at a time.  The better I started to feel the more willing I was to let the conventional food go.

That’s the thing, everyone IS different.  You get to decide how and what you want to eat. We have learned that this works for us.  At this point the way we eat has more to do with being healthy verses losing weight.

I know you all are busy folks so I’ll come back in a day or so and talk more about our little journey.  However, I absolutely, positively, cannot leave you with those pictures.

Awe.  So cute right?

Awe. So cute right?

 Now go try my Shepard’s Pie and tell me what you think!

 

Paleo Shepard's Pie
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Ingredients
  1. 1 medium spaghetti squash
  2. 4 tbsp. grass-fed butter
  3. 2 lbs. grass-fed ground beef
  4. 2 stalks of celery diced
  5. 1 leak sliced and cleaned
  6. 3 carrots diced
  7. 1 small head of broccoli - cut into small florets
  8. 1 can diced tomatoes
  9. salt and pepper to taste
  10. 1 tsp. cumin
  11. 1 tsp. granulated garlic
Instructions
  1. Stab holes into the spaghetti squash and microwave on high for 15 minutes or until it has a give to it.
  2. When cool enough, cut squash, scrape out seeds to discard, then scrape out insides onto a cookie sheet lined with a clean dish towel. Cover with another towel to soak up as much moisture as possible while the rest of the dish is cooking.
  3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  4. Melt 2 tbsp. of the butter into the pan.
  5. Add ground beef, celery, leeks and carrots.
  6. Stir frequently until the meat is browned.
  7. Add the cumin, granulated garlic, broccoli and diced tomatoes.
  8. Cook until broccoli is tender and ingredients are incorporated.
  9. Transfer meat mixture to a baking dish.
  10. Cover meat evenly with the spaghetti squash.
  11. Salt and pepper the top of the squash.
  12. Divide the remaining butter into small squares and place on top of the squash evenly.
  13. Bake until the squash is golden. About 30 minutes.
Cut The Grain http://cutthegrain.com/