Apple Curry Tuna Salad
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Apple Curry Tuna Salad

Trying to find good paleo lunches for my husband isn’t easy but this Apple Curry Tuna Salad was okay.

As you may know by now, I like quick and easy recipes, especially for lunches.

Here are the ingredients you’ll be needing ~

Ingredients for Apple Curry Tuna Salad

Ingredients for Apple Curry Tuna Salad (Lemon not shown)

I used homemade Paleo Mayonnaise. It really tastes better than “regular” mayonnaise.

To start, I peeled and diced the apple then added it to a bowl with the juice of one lemon. I then tossed it all together. This keeps the apple from getting brown.

Lemon Juice coated Apple Pieces

Diced Apples Coated with Lemon Juice

After cleaning the parsley, I chopped it up. This is how much I used out of the big bunch I had.

Parsley

Parsley

Then I opened the two cans of tuna, drained them, tossed the tuna in a medium sized bowl, added the curry powder (a little at a time until I had the flavor I wanted).

Next, I added everything else to the bowl and mixed it all together.

And ~ whala ~ all done!

Here’s the recipe …

Ingredients

  • 1 apple, peeled and diced
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 2 cans of Tuna
  • 1/2 cup of Homemade Paleo Mayonnaise
  • Curly Parsley, cleaned and diced
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon Curry Powder

Directions

  1. Add the lemon juice to a small bowl then add the diced apple. Stir and set this aside.
  2. Chop the parsley and set it aside.
  3. After draining, add the 2 cans of tuna to a medium sized bowl.
  4. Add the Mayonnaise, Curry Powder and the Parsley to the tuna then stir. (Add the curry powder a little at a time to get the right taste for your “buds.”)
  5. Drain the apple pieces then add the apple to the tuna mixture.

Next? Sit back and enjoy your meal.

I changed the recipe just a tad from the original recipe substituting lemon for the lime and using less tuna, less mayo and less curry.

Apple Curry Tuna Salad

Apple Curry Tuna Salad

 

 

 

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Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin
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Cinco De Mayo Restaurant

On our travels back and forth to Chicago, we try to find new restaurants to check out to to break up the mundaneness of this oft taken trip.

On this occasion, we stopped in Mauston, Wisconsin at a restaurant called Cinco De Mayo. The place appeared to be a hoppin’ with locals and when you enter, directly in front, is the bar area.

We were seated right away but it took awhile for a server to come to our table. Then, once we got our drinks, we had to ask for the free chips and salsa after ordering.

The decor here is very “Mexican” with beautiful colors throughout.

Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin

Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin

Sad to say, the decor is probably the best thing, in my humble opinion, that this restaurant has going for it. Well, unless you don’t have much experience eating authentic Mexican food.

The menu ~ what can I say? What a disappointment to find spelling mistakes throughout the menu. In this day and age, spell check is so common that I don’t understand why there should be spelling mistakes.

Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin

Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin

Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin

Cinco de Mayo Restaurant, Mauston, Wisconsin

I know, I know, we don’t eat the menu but … it’s still disappointing.

The food was barely okay. My husband had the Carnitas platter which had quite a bit of fat in it. Very unappetizing. I’d never seen this before.

Carnitas

Carnitas

I had a chicken enchilada platter which didn’t have much chicken in it.

Enchiladas

Enchiladas

The reviews on Yelp for Cinco de Mayo are at a 3.5. One recent review talks about the possibility of the restaurant having new owners or cooks as the food was tasteless.

I don’t know what the reasons are for the food not being up to par, but this is not a restaurant that we would return to ~ unless something changes and the reviews show a big improvement.

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Lake Elmo Sky
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A Lake Elmo Park Reserve Trail

Autumn is coming up quickly along with its cool evenings, so when an almost perfect day presents itself we have to take advantage of it and head out to one of the trails.

The Lake Elmo Park Reserve is one of my favorite places to go. We have never camped there but have sat by the beach and walked around.

So ~ please join me and inhale a little bit of the beauty we saw.

Little House on the Prairie, anyone? No house, but the expanse of space empties your mind of all cares.

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

The delicate flowers bring to mind humanity with all its frailties and its strengths.

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Water out in the distance ~ refreshment for a parched soul that needs healing from the onslaught of evil in this world.

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

From the waters rise the grass straight and tall after its received its refreshment.

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

The moss falls from trees onto the landscape and leaves beauty in its wake.

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

And like “A Bridge Over Troubled Water,” I too lay me down in natures solitude.

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Lake Elmo Park Reserve

May you have peace in your heart today.

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Crispy Chicken Thighs

I’m really glad I stumbled upon this Crispy Chicken Thighs recipe. It was delicious! And it was really really easy to make. What a great combination.

Here are the ingredients you’ll be using (less the salt):

Ingredients for Crispy Chicken Thighs (1 of 2)

Ingredients for Crispy Chicken Thighs (1 of 2)

Then ~ you’ll need some bone-in skin-on chicken thighs. This package had 5 thighs which was perfect for us. Clean them thighs well then dry them.

Chicken Thighs

Chicken Thighs (2 of 2)

Next I prepared the spices in a small bowl. You can use however much of each you want depending on your taste buds. (Cool, no?)

Spices

Spices

After rubbing the herbs on the cleaned and dried chicken, I prepared a cookie sheet by layering it with parchment paper.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper

The chicken gets baked in a 400° convection oven (40 minutes in a regular oven) for approximately 30 minutes.  Use a meat thermometer to make sure the chicken is completely cooked ~ if you don’t have one, poke a fork through the chicken and make sure the juices run clear.

And that’s how simple it was.  Special thanks to Stupid Easy Paleo for this recipe. Head on over there if you need additional instructions.

Crispy Chicken Thighs

Crispy Chicken Thighs

Enjoy!

 

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Roasted Eggplant with Herbs

A couple of weeks ago I bought a large eggplant and, sad to say, I didn’t use it and it became moldy.

So, I decided to try again and bought another eggplant. This time I had a recipe ready for it. Am I getting smart or what?  (laughing)

I found the recipe in a cookbook called The Cooking Light Cookbook that I was given as a gift a couple of years back. It really has some very nice recipes that don’t need tweaking to make them paleo.

I used one large eggplant instead of 4 small ones as the recipe recommended ~ you can choose what works for you.

Here’s what you’ll be needing (salt, pepper and olive oil are not shown) …

Ingredients

Ingredients

I used fresh basil but didn’t have fresh sage on hand so I used powdered and it worked out quite well.

This year, I planted rosemary in a flower pot and it’s worked really well for me. I keep the flower pot right next to the front door. Unfortunately, I’ve been told that rosemary is not a perennial in Minnesota (unlike Seattle where the rosemary seems to grow most of the year and then comes back the following year).

You’ll be cutting the eggplant lengthwise but barely to the top as you want it to stay intact while it bakes.

Prepare the Eggplant

Prepare the Eggplant

Then, you’ll be preparing the herb mixture.

Prepare Herbs

Prepare Herbs

Dum dee dum … too easy, too easy …

After brushing the eggplant (inside and outside) with olive oil, you’ll be baking it in the oven.

So ~ let’s take a look at the actual recipe, shall we?

Ingredients

  • 4 small eggplants (about 13 ounces) or 1 large one
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°.
  2. Cut the eggplant into 1/4 inch slices, cutting to but not through the stem end.
  3. Fan the eggplant and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (or you can spray it with olive oil spray.
  4. Brush 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil evenly over the eggplant slices.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes or so then remove from the oven and press the eggplant “slices” apart.
  6. Brush the slices with 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil then sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  7. Put the eggplant back in the oven for an additional 10 minutes until the flesh is tender and the edges are browned.  (Note: It only took an additional 5 minutes in a convection oven.)
  8. Remove the eggplant from the oven then drizzle just a bit more olive oil evenly over the eggplant and sprinkle with the herbs.

That’s it! I served the Roasted Eggplant with grilled Steak and Cilantro and Cumin Spiced Carrots.

Roasted Eggplant with Herbs

Roasted Eggplant with Herbs

Enjoy!

For additional recipes, click here.

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Trees
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The Beginnings of Autumn

Nature does not wait for the calendar to announce the start of autumn, it simply takes in the changes that surround it and embraces them.

As the daytime shadows play peek-a-boo between the tall oak and maple trees, the summer plants yield to the coolness of the night. Impatiens drop their flowers in a necessary reaction to the next season.

Autumn Impatiens

Autumn Impatiens

Like people, some plants will stubbornly hold on to the last ray of warmth waiting until the last minute to yield to what is inevitable.

Autumn Impatiens

Autumn Impatiens

Yet, yield they must as the earth sends signals of the new season that is slowly making its entrance.

The trees stand tall as they sway in the coolness of autumn’s beginning. Yet, they too slowly yield to this next season of life.

Fallen Leaves

Fallen Leaves

Soon, the trees will be bare and the ground will be covered in snowflakes that gather together to form white walking paths as if acting in one accord.

This is my favorite season of the year. And just like in nature, I too yield to the change as woodpiles have to be prepared for fireplaces that provide warmth, patio furniture gets cleaned and put away and summer projects ~ complete or incomplete ~ get put aside in favor of last year’s unfinished projects or new ones that need to be started.

The beauty of autumn cannot be denied yet death must occur in order for this new beauty to take its form.

Yet human death leaves no beauty ~ only memories that may soon be forgotten as those who retain them die themselves.

But just like autumn turns into winter and winter into spring, I hold on to the hope of the second coming of Jesus when death will be conquered. Without this, dear reader, we are like leaves that turn to dust never to return.

 

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Cilantro and Cumin Spiced Carrots
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Cilantro and Cumin Spiced Carrots

Are you enjoying the summer? I’ve been looking for more “sides” and found a nice paleo side dish that you can serve at any time but will work especially well during holidays.

The cumin and cilantro combination work superbly well.

Here are the ingredients you’ll be needing … (the olive oil is not shown)

Ingredients

Ingredients (olive oil not shown)

I didn’t use as many carrots as the recipe called for since I was only cooking for two. The carrots will be placed in 2 quarts of water and boiled until they are crisp tender.

Then you’ll be combining the rest of the ingredients to get a “sauce.”

Cilantro Dill Sauce

Cilantro Dill Sauce

This sauce will be poured over the prepared carrots and gently combined with them.

Easy, no?

Check out the recipe …

Ingredients

  • 2 Quarts of Water
  • 1 pound baby carrots, trimmed and halved lengthwise
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or 1 tablespoon dried dill
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a saucepan then add the carrots and cook for 3 minutes or until they are crisp tender. Drain when ready.
  2. Place the garlic in a food processor and pulse it 3 times or until it’s finely chopped.
  3. Add the cilantro to the food processor and pulse it 3 times also or until it’s combined with the garlic.
  4. Add the dill and the next four ingredients (through the salt) and pulse until all is combined.
  5. Spoon the dill mixture over the carrots and stir gently to combine it.
  6. Serve warm or at room temperature.

That’s it! Simple and simply delicious!

I served this salad as a side with steak and Roasted Eggplant with Herbs (will add the recipe at a later date).

Cilantro and Cumin Spiced Carrots

Cilantro and Cumin Spiced Carrots

I found this recipe in the Cooking Light , The New Way to Cook Light cookbook.

For more recipes, click here.

 

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Coming in the Clouds

Clouds

Clouds

On a cloudy day, while my husband was driving through the countryside, I looked up and saw dark clouds heading our way. In the midst of the clouds, a small hole appeared showing a bit of blue sky.

The scene reminded me of a hope I have in my heart ~ the day when Jesus returns. One of many Scriptures came to mind …

People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken.  At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” Luke 21:26-28

Indeed, we live in a world where talk of beheadings, Ebola, starvation, homelessness and the like flood the TV news.

But I have this hope. And one day I believe that I will see Jesus coming in a cloud just as He predicted. And yes, my head will be lifted high because I’ll finally be — GOING HOME!

 

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Celery, Fig, and Gorgonzola Salad with Steak and Mashed Sweet Potatoes
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Celery, Fig, and Gorgonzola Salad

Amazing! This Celery, Fig and Gorgonzola Salad is both paleo and delicious. It surprised me that a salad whose main ingredient is celery could be so good.

But, it was and it is and I’m thankful that I tried it. It does require overnight work as you’ll see …

First, here are the ingredients ~ Celery, Honey, Gorgonzola Cheese, Lemon and  Sun Maid Mission Figs. You’ll also need salt, pepper and olive oil.

Ingredients

Ingredients (Salt, Pepper and Olive Oil not shown)

You’ll need to prepare the celery the night before by getting a large bowl, adding ice and water to it, then the celery and putting it in the refrigerator overnight.

Soak celery overnight in ice water

Soak celery overnight in ice water

The following day, drain the celery and put it in a colander that is set over a larger bowl so it can drain. Then put this back in the refrigerator for approximately 2 hours.

Next you’ll be combing the gorgonzola, honey, olive oil and lemon juice in a large bowl. Then season this with salt and pepper.

Gorgonzola Mixture

Gorgonzola Mixture

The celery is then added to the gorgonzola mixture and tossed to combine everything together.

Ready to see the recipe?

Ingredients

  • bunch celery, trimmed and thinly sliced on the bias, about 3 inches in length
  • 1/2  pound Sun Maid Mission Figs
  • 1/2 pound Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon Honey
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgen Olive Oil
  • Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
  • Salt and Pepper (to your taste)

Directions

  1. Clean your celery well then place it in a large bowl filled with water and enough ice to cover the celery.
  2. Put the bowl in the refrigerator and let the celery soak overnight.
  3. The next day, drain the celery in a colander and throw out the water.
  4. Leave the celery in the colander and place the colander over a large bowl then set this back in the refrigerator and allow it to drain for a couple hours.
  5. Combine the gorgonzola, honey, olive oil and the lemon juice in a large bowl then season this with salt and pepper.
  6. Slice the celery about 3 inches in length, cut on the bias, then add it to the gorgonzola mixture and toss to combine it all.

I halved the recipe and used regular gorgonzola instead of the picante cheese one that was recommended.

That’s it! It really is quite delicious ~

I served this salad with mashed sweet potatoes and a steak.

Celery, Fig, and Gorgonzola Salad with Steak and Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Celery, Fig, and Gorgonzola Salad with Steak and Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Enjoy!

For more recipes, click here.

Special thanks to Martha Stewart for this recipe.

 

 

 

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Antique Cars

I always find local small town fairs interesting, don’t you?  This summer we attended one in Shoreview, MN.

One of the “highlights” of this fair was an antique car show.

I have to say ~ I am not normally drawn to old cars but for some reason I became excited as I saw them driving onto the lot where we could go “check them out.”

So ~ you are in for a treat as I took many many pictures. Sit back, put your feet up, and enjoy the pictures.

1936 Ford Humpback

1936 Ford Humpback

1936 Ford Humpback

1936 Ford Humpback

The front of the Ford Humpback looks so distinguished.

1936 Ford Humpback

1936 Ford Humpback

Perhaps because of my Hispanic background, I like looking at the uniquely colored ones like this blue 1955 Chevy.

1955 Chevy 210

1955 Chevy 210

Can you imagine yourself riding in this 1927 Ford Roadster? Not much trunk space, but it would make for a nice romantic ride in the country with the bench style front seat.

1927 Ford Roadster

1927 Ford Roadster

1927 Ford Roadster

1927 Ford Roadster

1927 Ford Roadster

1927 Ford Roadster

The elongated type cars weren’t especially one of my favorites. The hood and trunk are large but the inside of the car doesn’t have much space.

1976 Monte Carlo

1976 Monte Carlo

1976 Monte Carlo

1976 Monte Carlo

Here’s an SS (Special Series) Chevy Cheville. (I learned what the SS meant from a friend ~ thanks Karl!)

1970 Chevy Chevelle

1970 Chevy Chevelle

Even the filter in this car is reddish looking.

1970 Chevy Chevelle Engine

1970 Chevy Chevelle Engine

Another friend of mine is a Buick collector. This is what he shared with me about the 1964 Buick Riviera: “the engines were “big”  like 425 cubic inches total piston displacement. But because they were V-8 rather than straight 8s they were not overly long.  A lot of the hood length was styling.  It could probably have been 12inches shorter without crowding.”  So, now you know.  (laughing)

1964 Buick Riviera

1964 Buick Riviera

 

1964 Buick Riviera Dashboard

1964 Buick Riviera Dashboard

My friend also told me that if I wanted to see the “ultimate 64 Riviera” to look up the 2014 Detroit Autorama Ridler award, J.F.Launier is the owner builder (he invested $600K in the car). And boy, is that a beauty!  Click here for the link.  

1964 Buick Riviera Trunk

1964 Buick Riviera Trunk

Here’s another “fun” looking car. Perhaps it’s the curves on the car (besides the color) that draw me to this car.

1957, Chevy BelAir

1957, Chevy BelAir

1957, Chevy BelAir, Dashboard, Blue

1957, Chevy BelAir, Dashboard, Blue

Even the inside is blue!

1957, Chevy BelAir, Seats

1957, Chevy BelAir, Seats

This 1923 Ford Model T reminded me of an Amish buggy. What do you think?

1923 Ford Model T

1923 Ford Model T

1923 Ford Model T

1923 Ford Model T

And here’s another Buick ~ the Wildcat. It reminded me of a Mustang ~ to which my friend Jim replied: “the WC is about 2.5 feet longer and weighs almost 2,000 pounds more, 425 cubic inch displacement with dual four barrel carburetors, four speed manual transmission and looks like about $30,000.”

1964 Buick Wildcat

1964 Buick Wildcat

1964, Buick Wildcat

1964, Buick Wildcat

Anyone like the color orange? This 1959 Chevy Bel Air is beauuuutiful.  They sure take care of these cars. Look how shiny it is!

1959, Chevy BelAir, Orange

1959, Chevy BelAir, Orange

1959, Chevy BelAir

1959, Chevy BelAir

Although there were many many more cars, these were the ones that caught my attention. Did you have a favorite?

 

 

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