Life and….Cauliflower Fried Rice

I want to apologize for not being around lately. I’ve been super busy with family gatherings, work out/training, work… life in general!

Around 9:30 last night, I said to my husband, “I haven’t sat down yet and it’s almost time for bed.” That is mentally draining for me. I need some time to decompress or else I get anxious and impatient. Definitely the opposite of my usual bubbly self.

I didn’t get to meal prep this weekend (so sad) but Serge and I did accomplish one thing that’s been tearing at my soul: Spring cleaning!

We got rid of so much crap. I feel a weight lifted off my shoulders and even though the scale hasn’t moved down, I feel like I’ve dropped a ton of weight by getting rid of “things”.

Thanks for listening to my mini rant. I’ll get to the good stuff now.

My Mama and I go nuts over cauliflower, especially when they are so crispy right out of the oven! My Grandma recently nailed the whole cauliflower pizza thing (thanks Grandma for keeping the pizza dream alive!)…So you could say that cauliflower is sort of a big deal. I mean how can it not be a big deal? You can make rice, pizza, mashed “potato”, buffalo cauliflower bites, etc… etc…

So, making cauliflower rice isn’t hard. It’s just time consuming and you need to clean all the gadgets and stuff you use to make the rice. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Thanks to Green Giant and Target for making my life so much easier.

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Image taken from Green Giant (click link to see product info)

The only thing I got to make in advance this week was chicken cutlets… easy enough… fry them or bake them and you’re set.

People at work have been eating Chinese food this week and Serge ate Chinese food this weekend. It’s haunting me. I made cauliflower fried rice and thinly sliced a chicken cutlet on top.

I’m sure if you search the web you’ll find tons of recipes but I had zero patience and energy to do my research so I took my chances and did my own thing. Came out pretty awesome. Only problem is, I don’t have measurements for you.

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So heavenly looking… like it could almost be hash browns… mmm hash browns and eggs…  you’re welcome. another idea for ya.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients:

  • Bag of cauliflower rice
  • diced veggies (I used onions, garlic, mushrooms and scallions)
  • One egg
  • Protein of choice (I used chicken cutlets… you can do shrimp, tofu, beef, pork etc)
  • Salt and Pepper
  • EVOO
  • Soy Sauce
  • Optional *Hot sauce/ red pepper flakes

Directions:

  • Heat EVOO on skillet
  • Sautee veggies of choice
  • Cook cauliflower rice as directed on bag while veggies are cooking
  • Dump “rice” onto skillet
  • Add seasonings to taste
  • When cauliflower is cooked (I like mine extra crispy), crack an egg on top and mix all together
  • Add protein of choice

Yummy yummy yummy! This is my lunch for the next two days. I get to eat mock Chinese food without the extra calories and carbs and bathroom attacks (was that TMI? well, I don’t care… I know you all suffer from stomach issues after Chinese. WE ALL DO!)

 

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Meal Prep Love Affair

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Simple things in life make me so happy; puppies, kitties, a fresh mani, vacations, and napping are just a few examples. But what really excites me is meal prep. I am very passionate about it for several reasons:

 

  1. My time is precious and I have little of it. I do not want to spend it at the kitchen all night when I’ve just been at work all day.
  2. *Money. I cannot stand the idea of wasting money. My husband and I decided to take a break over the weekend and have a dinner date. Don’t get me wrong, I love quality time with my man and I love when someone else cooks for me (yay, no dishes!), but we have some future plans that we need to save up for… not only that, but our dinner cost approximately $60.00. Our entire food shopping excursion for last week was about $75.00 and that’s for two people, breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks for the entire week! One meal cost almost as much as an entire week of food shopping. It’s ok though, got to live a little, right?
  3. Dedication/Success. If you psych yourself about how your week is going to look meal wise and you don’t stray from your plan, you will succeed! You will reach your goal!

 *Money: Don’t believe all the things you hear! It does not cost THAT much to eat healthy. I will discuss food shopping in a later post.*

 If you are just entering the world of meal prep, it can be frightening and intimidating and you may want to give up. But don’t! It gets easier and then you can Instagram all your beautiful meals, and awesome Tupperware containers. Thinking about stackable containers and snap lids give me LIFE. I just want to scream “Yes, honey, work it!” I’m pretty sure you will feel the same exact way.

Tips for beginners:

  • Don’t go all Top Chef on me. Basic = better.
    • Boiled eggs
    • Roasted vegetables
    • Baked potatoes
    • Avocados
    • Fruits
    • Yogurts
    • Oatmeal
    • Nuts
    • Rotisserie chicken
  • Make a shopping list. Do not go in blindly. The supermarket is full of temptation and you’ll start putting anything and everything into your cart. That is not cost effective and it won’t help you on your quest to health.
  • Organize your thoughts and think about what you want for the week. Or if a week is too much of a commitment, start small and do something like Monday through Wednesday.
    • I have a meal planner (you can buy them on Amazon) or get a notebook, or print out a meal planner calendar (they have free ones online that I use for my Husband).
  • Again, start small.
    • Meal for a day example (Please remember, this is just an example, sort out meals and portions to fit your needs and life style):
      • Breakfast: Hardboiled egg, serving of oatmeal and a piece of fruit
      • Snack: Yogurt and a serving of nuts
      • Lunch: 2 cups roasted veggies and 3-6oz of rotisserie chicken
      • Snack: Almonds, blueberries, and string cheese or serving of peanut butter with an apple or celery and raisins (ants on a log, anyone?)
      • Dinner: Baked salmon, baked sweet potato, serving of veggies and a fruit
    • You don’t need to make everything on Sunday night. Even planning a bit ahead helps.
      • Roast an entire week worth of veggies. It’s easy and requires very little time. Simple seasoning, little bit of oil and pop them in the oven. When they are done, let them cool off and portion them out.
      • Baked potatoes can easily be done a week in advance or you can microwave them. I usually put some salt, pepper, and evoo, wrap them in foil and bake them. This way I don’t need to think about it for the rest of the week
      • Slow cookers are definitely one of my BFFAEAE’s. This is an excellent way to cook in bulk and not be super attentive. We decided to go a little more plant based proteins this week versus the usual meat overload. Thai curry lentil soup it is! We are going to have so much left over… got a little overzealous as I often do (anyone want some?)
      • We’ve replaced noodles with zoodles…Spiralize dem bad boys and tuck them away for the week (see, meal planning. Good times). Same with other veggies, if you know you are going to be cooking with peppers, onions, celery- chop them up and put them away for later use!
      • We are going to have a romantic evening this week, picture, “Lady and the Tramp” with the pasta and meatball scene except this is going to be zoodles and shrimp.
      • Rotisserie is perfect. It’s already cooked for you and you can make several dishes: chicken salad, chicken with a side of vegetables, deli chicken salad (little bit of mayo, apples or raisins, etc) on a whole wheat toast or wrap.
      • Oh, now you’re getting tired and you really don’t feel like making those turkey meatballs… all you need to do is prep it, freeze it, and cook it the day you are ready
      • Fish- marinade it the night before you plan to cook it.
      • I love anything that you can make and freeze. Chili, soups, meatballs, stews, marinated chicken breasts (label your zip lock bag, throw your food in the bag, and store in the freezer), fruit sandwiches with peanut butter, etc.
    • Don’t get frustrated. It may not go as planned at first but it’s ok. Trial and error, my friend. Like I said before, make it simple… in my opinion, bulk cooking is the best. Get your slow cooker bestie, make some shredded chicken and the meal possibilities are endless (BBQ chicken wrap, bbq chicken stuffed sweet potato, shredded chicken tacos, shredded chicken tortilla pizza).

I can go on and on all day with recipe ideas, storage ideas, ways to shop and save but I must remember that you are my young grasshoppers. You must be patient… I must be patient.

I wish you all great success! Happy prepping!

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Caribbean Jerk Shrimp and Sweet Potato Avocado Mash

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No offense to Paula Deen or my Russian ancestors, but we do not need to use butter in everything! “What do you mash with your potatoes to make them moist and flavorful?”
::insert heavy Russian accent::

 

Say hello to my little friend, Avocado.

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I promise I will get to the recipe in a second but first lets see the difference between avocado and buttah:
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Ingredients for one serving:

  • 1 sweet potato
  • 1/2 avocado
  • Salt and pepper
  • Cayenne pepper optional
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1 tbs minced garlic
  • 1 tbs evoo or coconut oil
  • Walkerswood Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
  • Lemon juice for the avocado and shrimp
  • 3 oz shrimp (I used Target’s Market Pantry small shrimp): 60 cal/13g protein

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • Pierce holes around sweet potato and bake for 45-1 hour or until soft or microwave for approx 10 min turning sides once
  • Soak shrimp in cold water for about 15 min
  • Once shrimp have defrosted place in ziploc bag and mix with jerk seasoning. Cook on pan for about 3-5 minutes or until translucent
  • Chop onion and garlic, saute for approx 3 to 4 minutes until translucent
  • Drizzle half avocado with lemon juice, salt and pepper
  • Mash baked potato and avocado together and mix in onions and garlic
  • Serve with cooked shrimped and lemon wedge

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