Friday, November 6, 2015

Stuffed Chicken With Spinach & Almonds

This recipe came to me on a Friday evening when the food prepped at the beginning of the week was entirely gone... consumed for all of its goodness. We go to the grocery store once a week with a list of the ingredients needed for the planned dishes to be cooked. Fortunately, there was a pack of chicken breast in our deep freezer, leftover spinach, and raw almonds in the pantry. Something had to be done. And boy, was it good! Husband loved it. Said it tasted clean and healthy, then managed to consume another piece.

Stuffed Chicken With Spinach & Almonds
By Eleanor Arkhipova
Serves 6

2 garlic minced
1/2 onion chopped
3 eggs
1 tsp paprika
1/2 c crushed almonds
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 c spinach chopped (use more if desired)
3 large chicken breasts cut in half vertically
1 tbs olive oil

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. Heat olive oil in a pan in medium heat then saute garlic and onion for two minutes. Sprinkle with a dash of salt and pepper then add the chopped spinach. Mix and cook for another two minutes till the spinach is wilted. Set aside.
  3. Crack eggs in a large bowl and whisk. Add paprika, salt, pepper, chopped almonds, and mix. Add the spinach, and mix. 
  4. Spray olive oil in a baking pan of choice. Set aside.
  5. Trim the fat off of the chicken. Cut in half vertically and then cut slits horizontally without cutting through the chicken (see picture). Do this for the remaining chicken and place in the baking pan.
  6. Sprinkle salt, pepper, and paprika on both sides of the chicken.
  7. Fill the slits with the spinach mixture. Bake for 30-40 minutes. 
  8. Serve with a side of sweet potatoes. Add salt & pepper as needed.
  9. Enjoy!
*Note: You can skip sauteing the garlic, onion, and spinach and add it straight into the egg mixture. It is still quite decent.

We got this spinach at the farmer's market. I had to trim the stalks. This is as fresh as one can get.

We don't have a mortar and pestle, so here is a makeshift one:
measuring cup and the end of a knife sharpener. Make it work!

I saw my dad trimming chicken fat with scissors a few months back and wondered why
I never though of doing likewise. Easier than trimming with a knife. Genius! 

Cut the chicken breast in half vertically, then slice horizontally, but not all the way through.

Sprinkle salt, pepper, and paprika on the chicken.
I got too excited and sprinkled it with paprika before the salt and pepper.

Before going to the oven. I just love the colors and the presentation.

MMmmm... the end result.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Red Curry Turkey Meatball

Red Curry Turkey Meatball on top of Cauliflower Rice. YUM! 
It was sad when this dish was all gone.

Red Curry Turkey Meatball
By Eleanor Arkhipova

For the Turkey Meatballs

1/2 onion chopped
2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tbsp almond flour
1 egg
1 lb ground turkey
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place all the ingredients in food processor. Pulse till mixed thoroughly.
  3. Spray a baking pan with olive oil and set aside.
  4. Use a cookie scoop to scoop out meat and make into turkey balls. Makes about 20. Place in pan.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes then set aside.

For the Sauce

2 tbsp olive oil
1 roasted red pepper chopped
1 medium sweet potato chopped
2 medium carrots chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
1 onion chopped
2 tsp grated ginger
2 1/2 tbsp red curry paste
1 tbsp curry spice
1/2 tbsp crushed red peppers
2 14 oz can coconut milk
1 tbsp fish sauce (or coconut aminos)
1/2 tsp tapioca starch (optional)
  1. Roast red pepper in open fire using a gas grill. Turn every minute to roast all sides till medium char. Set aside. Chop in 1 inch squares when cooled.
  2. Peel sweet potatoes and carrots, then chop. Boil until tender. Strain then set aside. 
  3. Heat olive oil in a pot in medium heat. Add garlic, onion, and ginger - sauté for two minutes then add the chopped roasted red pepper. Mix for two minutes.
  4. Add the red curry paste, curry spice, and the crushed red peppers - then mix until well coated.
  5. Add coconut milk and fish sauce. Mix.
  6. Add the sweet potatoes and the carrots. Mix.
  7. Add the turkey meatballs. Mix.
  8. Bring to a boil then simmer for two minutes.
  9. *Optional* To get a thicker sauce, add tapioca starch and mix till dissolved. 
  10. Serve over cauliflower rice or white rice. 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sautéed Bottle Gourd Squash (Ginisang Upo)

This recipe is dear to my heart. It reminds me of my adventurous childhood in the Philippines. My father had a penchant for gardening. Our garden was full of exotic fruits, red and green peppers, beans, and my favourite, Upo (Bottle Gourd Squash). Dad built a trellis over the vegetable garden where the Upo grew and hanged sporadically. I remember walking through that garden, pretending that it was Eden. It was a pure experience that brought so many great memories.

What a Throwback Thursday! Here I am posing in our garden in the Philippines, underneath the Upo vines, with my brother after school circa early 1988. Me as an eight year old and brother as a ten year. Oh, the memories... 
First, these gourds are available for purchase at Oriental markets. I've also seen these in Indian stores. Go out there and explore! Cutting and peeling this Upo was challenging. The peel was too thick for a regular peeler. The best strategy was to cut with a knife as if peeling an apple vertically, cut in half lengthwise, and then scoop out the seeds like one would scoop out a cucumber.
Sautéeing the garlic and the onions. So aromatic.
What I love about this recipe is the strong garlic taste in a tomato base. I actually put more garlic in my dish than the described recipe below. If you're not into garlic, use less.

Sautéed Bottle Gourd Squash (Ginisang Upo)

By Eleanor Arkhipova

2 tbsp olive oil
3 large cloves garlic minced
1 medium onion chopped
1 28 oz can organic diced tomatoes
1 medium-large upo, peeled and diced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot on medium heat. Sautée garlic until golden, then add onions. Add salt & pepper then mix. Cook for 3 minutes until translucent. 
  2. Add organic diced tomatoes and mix. Bring to a boil.
  3. Add diced upo, mix, and then bring to a boil for five minutes.
  4. Mix and then bring to low heat. Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes. The Upo will be soft when it's cooked.
  5. Add salt & pepper to taste.
  6. Enjoy!

* Substitute zucchini for the upo and add green peppers for another yummy variation.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Thai Butternut Squash Soup

Again, from Juli Bauer's Paleo Cookbook - Thai Butternet Squash Soup. Due to copyright, I found a similar recipe online from,, which is converted to paleo and is copy pasted below. 

Thai Butternet Squash Soup

1 teaspoon olive oil (or ghee)
1 cup chopped onion
2 1/2 teaspoons red curry paste
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 (14-ounce) coconut milk
1 teaspoon crushed red peppers
1 large butternut squash
1 tablespoon coconut aminos
1 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup chopped unsalted, dry-roasted cashews
1/4 cup cilantro leaves


  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the butternut squash lengthwise and bake face side down for 40 minutes. Flip over then scoop out seeds after 10 minutes of cooling. Set aside. 
  2. Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add garlic, then onion; sauté 3 minutes. Add curry paste, and ginger; sauté 45 seconds, stirring constantly. 
  3. Add coconut milk, squash, crushed red peppers, and salt; cover. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. 
  4. Place half of squash in a blender with half of the sauce. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining squash and sauce mixture. Spoon about 1 cup soup into each of 4 bowls. 
  5. Top with cilantro and cashews as garnish.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Chocolate Hazelnut Pumpkin Bread

Chocolate Hazelnut Pumpkin Breadsprinkled with cinnamon with a side of coconut cream.

This lovely recipe comes from Juli Bauer's, Paleo Cookbook, which my brother so lovingly gave me for my birthday. Out of respect and support for the author, you can get the recipe by purchasing her cookbook in Amazon or your local bookstore. Also, follow here blog here, and instagram here.

What? This recipe was Mmmm Mmmm good. Two slices were consumed immediately. Judge me, I'm okay with it. It is under "Breakfast" in the cookbook, but likewise can be deemed as a dessert - depending on your point of view. It was fairly simple to make - though I cheated and bought a 100% cacao hazelnut spread that was totally paleo legit from a local specialty health food store. Apparently, hazelnuts aren't in season. If they were in the store, I completely missed them. That being said, raw cashews were sprinkled as a garnish. It still works. This is also husband approved.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Chicken Pad Thai

Gluten-Free, Grain-Free Chicken Pad Thai

I got this recipe from my, Paleo Takeout, cookbook. Likewise, the recipe is found in the Domestic Man's Blog: click here for the recipe.

This recipe was a fun adventure in my kitchen. After cooking and tasting it, I knew where I could have done better:

  • Not all tamarind paste are created equal. I still need to go out and sample a lot to get the ideal taste.
  • The secret is not to put too much noodles, which I did. 
  • I used cashews instead of macadamia nuts. It wasn't bad. It tasted fantastic alone when sauteed with the garlic. But next time, macadamia nuts will be used.
That being said, the taste is good. I'd set it apart from the Pad Thai ordered from restaurants, but I do need to do a bit of tweaking because I believe I didn't do this recipe justice. 

Pad Thai Sauce

This was my favourite. Garlic and nuts, sauteed together to a crisp burn. I could sit and eat this as is.


Friday, October 9, 2015

Cream Of Mushroom Soup

This is the soup served at a restaurant in Nikolayev Ukraine, where we brunched al fresco. 
The chilly weather calls for more soup. This month, I'll be cooking more soup than previous fall seasons. Soup is a feel good food. It's warm, it's cozy, and it makes the belly feel wonderful. 

This particular soup, I got off of the blog, Jay's Baking Me Crazy. Let me tell you, this soup is superb, even when I made a few substitutions:

Instead of = Substitute 
Regular Mushrooms = Baby Portabella
Arrowroot Powder = Tapioca Starch

This yumminess reminded me of the soup I ordered in Ukraine circa 2010. I remember dipping the spoon in the bowl not knowing that it will spoil my taste buds. It was a memorable moment. When we arrived back to the U.S. of A. no other mushroom soup recipe compared, until now! Next time I cook this soup, I'll take better photos, and likewise, make the soup thicker.

Ethiopian Cabbage Dish

Today's dish is a cabbage side from Ethiopia. Someday I'd like to travel there to learn of their culture and culinary.  This recipe is delicious, healthy, and easy to make.

Ethiopian Cabbage Dish


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 head cabbage, shredded
  • 5 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes


  1. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Cook the carrots and onion in the hot oil about 5 minutes. 
  2. Stir in the salt, pepper, cumin, turmeric, and cabbage and cook another 15 to 20 minutes. 
  3. Add the potatoes; cover. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until potatoes are soft, 20 to 30 minutes.

Blackened Seared and Steamed Tilapia with Mashed Cauliflower and a Side of Asparagus

Blackened Seared-and-Steamed Tilapia with Mashed Cauliflower and a Side of Asparagus
Drink: Republic Of Tea - Decaf Ginger And Peach Iced Tea
Whipped this up in 20 minutes right after my workout at the gym. This was our family dinner tonight. Healthy and absolutely fantastic. Without further ado, the recipe is below.

Sauteed Asparagus
(serves 2)

8 asparagus spears
2 tbsp olive oil (1 tsp if cooking only the asparagus)
Salt, pepper to taste

Heat up the pan and add 2 tbsp of asparagus. While the pan is heating, cut the end of the asparagus and discard. Add the asparagus to the pan just so they are coated with olive oil. Remove immediately.

In another plate, season the asparagus with salt and pepper to taste. Add the asparagus back in the pan and cook until desired, turning over as needed. (We like ours a little crunchy so we don't overcook them)

Place in plate.

Blackened Seared and Steamed Tilapia 
(serves 2)

2 fresh tilapia fillets (4oz)
Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste
2 tbsp olive oil (from the olive oil from above)

While cooking the asparagus, pat tilapia dry and then sprinkle salt, pepper, and garlic powder on both sides. Set aside.

Once asparagus are cooked and placed in plate, turn the stove up to high heat. Place both fillets in the pan and cook for two minutes.

Turn the fillets over and cover the pan with a lid. Take out of the fire and let it steam for 10 minutes. Do not take the lid off till 10 minutes are through.

Squeeze lime on top.

(This comes out perfect every time)

After 10 minutes, place in the plate.

Mashed Cauliflower
(serves 2)

1 head cauliflower
10+ cups water
2 tbsp olive oil
salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste

Chop the cauliflower and boil until fork tender.

Drain cauliflower and place in a food processor with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder. Pulse till consistency of mush.

Serve on plate and top with a dash of black peppr.

Nutrition Facts (per 1 plate): 270 calories, 16.0g fat, 50mg cholesterol, 87.7mg sodium, 10g carbohydrate, 3.3g sugar, 5.7g fiber, 25.2g protein.

Garlic Ghee Brussel Sprouts

People hate Brussel Sprouts because they've been introduced to it incorrectly. The majority think it's gross and bitter, but when cooked the correct way, it's fantastic.

Here is a recipe for a slow cooked side dish of Brussel Sprouts. Once cooked, it melts in your mouth and you'll be asking for seconds.

Garlic Ghee Brussel Sprouts
by Elle A

1 10oz package of brussel sprouts
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves chopped
1 medium onion chopped
3 tbsp ghee
1 c water
1 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp salt to taste

  1. Cut the base of the brussel sprouts and then cut in half lengthwise (see picture). Set aside.
  2. In a large pot, saute the garlic in medium heat. Once golden, add onion and cook until translucent. 
  3. In the cup of water, mix the sugar (or honey) and salt, then pour in the pot. Mix in the ghee until melted. 
  4. Add the brussel sprouts in the pot and mix. 
  5. Cover and put on low heat. Mix several times in the span of 20 minutes until soft and tender.
  6. Add salt to taste.
  7. Enjoy!

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