Weeknight Meals #5 (2 weeks worth)

I feel like we finally got it back together after our multiple busy weekends and we had a successful meal prep/planning for the last two weeks. Here’s what’s been cooking:

Happy Coincidence of Ingredients

We had a combination of foods at our house that was either purchased with an unknown use (hello, Costco), left from a party, or gifted to us. We found ourselves with goat cheese, mini cucumbers, a beefsteak tomato, and some really good olive oil from Croatia. We put those four things together with some salt and made an absolutely amazing salad! We’ve been repeating it over and over because it’s so tasty and because I bought the goat cheese at Costco so we have just a little bit…

Dessert!

As previously mentioned, I’ve finally started baking again! Last weekend, I made a lemon poppyseed bundt cake from the wholesomeyum.com (the same website I made pumpkin bread from). It came out delicious and only has 4g of net carbs! I’m convinced my baking powder went bad, so it came out a bit flat, but it was wonderful! If you like to bake and you don’t follow thewholesomeyum on Instagram or Pintrest, you need to! I’ve re-pinned almost every dessert she’s posted!

Seafood Initiative

We kept up our dedication to eating seafood twice a week with salmon, mahi mahi, and some shrimp. (The shrimp may have been in the form of a cheat meal at Torchy’s Tacos…). Tom made up a compound butter with cilantro and lime juice to use on fish. The first round of use was on salmon fillets that were grilled outside, then topped with the butter. It turned out just okay. It didn’t seem like the right flavors with the salmon. So, next we tried it on the mahi mahi. Instead of grilling the fish, we pan seared it in the compound butter, then topped it with more compound butter. This was a winner! Of course, with that much butter, how could you lose? It’s super quick to make (as long as you’ve remembered to thaw your fish) and tasty. Since Tom made an entire stick of butter’s worth of compound butter, we’ll be repeating this dish for a couple weeks!

Crockpot Cooking

One of our favorite things to make up is a huge batch of shredded meat (pork, chicken, or beef) that acts as filling for tacos or enchiladas. We ran out of our carnitas we had been eating, so two Sundays ago, we made up a batch of Cochinita Pibil! Cochinita Pibil is a shredded pork shoulder slow-cooked in a intensely spiced sauce made from achiote paste, cinnamon, cloves, charred garlic, and peppercorns. We modified this recipe by ignoring the banana leaf part and just chucking everything in the slow cooker and cooking it until the pork falls apart. We are ignorant of what flavor banana leaf adds (I’m sure it’s amazing), so it doesn’t bother us to do so. I did reduce the amount of cinnamon and cloves this time just a touch and liked it more.

If you prepare this dish, it is mandatory to also prepare the pickled red onions. The two are magical together! You could eat this in a low-carb taco or just on a plate. We like to serve it with cojita cheese and cilantro. Tom, who love sauce more than anyone I know, also adds a spicy salsa on top. I usually top my taco off with a dollop of full-fat sour cream. Serve it with a cold salad like broccoli-cauliflower and avocado slices or guacamole and chicharrones. You definitely don’t feel like you’re on a restricted keto diet eating this! It also makes plenty of leftovers that will last you weeks and it freezes well. Cook once, eat at least eight or more times!

Philly Cheese Steak Casserole

Philly Cheese Steak Casserole in the upper left. It’s not a real pretty dish but it’s quite tastey.

This past weekend, I tried out a new recipe to make Philly Cheese Steak casserole. I like to make casseroles because they are the ultimate leftover maker, but losing that starch has really slowed down my casserole making. I haven’t dove into replacing rice with cauliflower rice in my standard casseroles yet, so maybe I’ll give that a go. This recipe, however, did not have any starch to replace, so we tried it out. The recipe called for ground beef cooked in a steak seasoning, sauteed bell peppers, onions, and mushrooms, and Gruyere and provolone cheeses. It was easy to make and pretty good. The first night we ate it as per the recipe and found it dry, so we did some googling and found a cheese steak sauce recipe to modify and try out (4 oz cream cheese, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1 tsp wochestershire and 1/2 tsp garlic powder. Mix over heat until it is melted and creamy). Adding the sauce helped the whole recipe out. It’s very low carb and made for quick re-heats this week.

Mole Verde

For Tom’s birthday (now two months ago!), we went to a restaurant that specialized in mole sauces which reignited our taste buds for that dish. Tom has a good recipe for mole verde that he pulled out and made last week. I’m not sure how low carb the dish is, but it did not knock me out of ketosis even a little bit, so I think it’s good to go. The ingredient list a slightly unusual with a mole verde paste found in the Latino section of some grocery stores (or here on Amazon) and tomatillos. The sauce is pretty simple to prepare. Saute quartered tomatillos, onions, and jalapenos in a pan, then put them in the blender, mix with the mole verde paste and some broth (chicken or vegetable) and simmer for awhile. We then grilled some skin-on chicken thighs (10-pack, so plenty of leftovers!) and served the mole sauce over the thighs. It’s also intensely flavored, so cool sides go best, like a coleslaw and avocados (of course).

Hopefully that gives you some ideas for meal planning! Thanks for reading!

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