MINCE: cheap, versatile + nutritious.

And also totally underrated!

Let’s make ‘boring old’ mince more appealing!

Make the most of seemingly boring ground meat by learning about how nutritious it is on it’s own, how to give it a mega nutrient-boost, how to utilise it for meals and make it more interesting, how to source the best types, healthy recipes and lots more in this post!


How to choose the best quality mince

If you have a mincer at home you can buy a huge variety of meat cuts and make amazing mince mixes and then it comes down to choosing the best cuts, taking into consideration health and the environment. While buying mince as-is can be a bit different and more challenging. A packet of mince patties, for example, could contain a whole heap of junk so it’s important to read labels but buying 100% meat is always the best option.

Here are the main types of mince in Australia + recommendations for what to look for:

๐˜พ๐™๐™ž๐™˜๐™ ๐™š๐™ฃ: Free-range or organic. Organic is best but can be hard to find. You can make your own by using a food processor to blitz thigh and breast (then it’s not dry like chicken mince tends to be!)

๐™‡๐™–๐™ข๐™—: Grass-fed or organic. BUT lamb in OZ is usually from regions with lush pasture and grain feed isn’t needed so most lamb mince should be ok but you won’t know unless you ask the farmer/butcher. “Grass-fed” is the safest and because lamb is fatty it’s important it’s not fed on grain otherwise the omega 3 and 6 ratios are out of whack.

๐˜ฝ๐™š๐™š๐™›: Grass-fed or certified organic. Most beef in Aus is given grain unless the farmers choose to rain their cattle on pasture only. Organic doesn’t equal grass-fed but it means there were no chemicals used on the farm or the animal.

๐™†๐™–๐™ฃ๐™œ๐™–๐™ง๐™ค๐™ค: Wild is best. If farmed then it’s likely to have been fed grains and soy.

Roo mince can be more gristly then other meat and is incredibly lean. I often use it as I would beef mince. Stronger flavour though.

๐™‹๐™ค๐™ง๐™ : Definitely free-range at a minimum or organic if possible. Hard to come by good pork and can be expensive but worth it as conventionally-raised is reeeeeeally unhealthy.

The better quality mince the better it is for your health + for the planet.


Why mince is so healthy

Good quality mince (see previous post) is great for our health. Beef, for example, is a good source of protein, zinc, vitamins B3 and B12, iron, potassium, phosphorus, vitamins B1, B2, and B6 – essential for everyday functioning

Fatty mince (beef and lamb) raised on healthy pasture contain a high Omega-3 to 6 ratio which is ideal.

Kangaroo, an underdog, is low in fat but high in essential minerals like zinc, and vitamins like B12 which helps produce red blood cells and maintain the nervous and immune system, 80% of the RDI for Vitamin B6 which helps to release energy from the protein we eat, Niacin which helps to release energy from food and reduce fatigue, Riboflavin which plays a role in transporting iron around the body, and Thiamine, an important B-group vitamin necessary for normal energy production.

Good quality chicken contains a range B vitamins, high protein levels, folate, Vitamins A, E and K, and a full spectrum of minerals from selenium to manganese. Fatty chicken from healthy farms has a better Omega-3 to 6 ratio too.

Pork too contains a long list of important nutrients like zinc, niacin, phosphorous, riboflavin, B6 and B12, thiamine and zinc.

๐™๐™๐™š ๐™ฃ๐™ช๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ž๐™š๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™จ ๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐™ข๐™š๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐˜ฝ๐™„๐™Š-๐˜ผ๐™‘๐˜ผ๐™„๐™‡๐˜ผ๐˜ฝ๐™‡๐™€, ๐™ข๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š ๐™๐™ช๐™ข๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™—๐™ค๐™™๐™ฎ ๐™ ๐™ฃ๐™ค๐™ฌ๐™จ ๐™๐™ค๐™ฌ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™—๐™š๐™จ๐™ฉ ๐™ช๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ก๐™ž๐™จ๐™š ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š๐™ข (๐™–๐™จ ๐™ค๐™ฅ๐™ฅ๐™ค๐™จ๐™š๐™™ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฅ๐™ก๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™จ).

What’s your fave type of mince??


Protein: plant vs animal

“The human body is by mass about 65% water and 20% of what is left is protein, meaning most of the non-water weight of our bodies is made from proteins. This includes our muscles and internal organs, and all of our protein comes from food.

There is a near infinite number of possible proteins that can be assembled from amino acids. Amino acids are the body’s building blocks and we have identified just over 500 so far. The human body requires 20 amino acids but there are 9 that are are of special interest to us: these are the ones that are essential for life; without them, we will die. The other 11 we can manufacture in our bodies for use.

The 9 essential amino acids: Histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine.

It’s not just recommended that we get these aminos; it’s vital. All of these essential amino acids are found together in meats and animals based foods. All can be found in plant foods, but rarely at the same time and never in the same proportions as meats.

Plant based proteins are not clean proteins

We consider a protein to be clean if it is complete without other substances which may or may not be healthy or desirable.

Plants fight back

Plants, and especially plant based sources of protein, contain many other compounds which might not be so good for us, because they don’t want to be eaten. While it’s true to say all organisms seek to preserve life, animals are able to run away or fight; their defences against being eaten are external things like claws, scales, teeth, fur and stingers. Plants can’t run away so they’ve evolved to deter being eaten chemically.” – The Ethical Butcher

Plants contain ANTI-NUTRIENTS: Phytates, Lectins, Oligosaccharides, Oxalates, Goitrogens, Tannins, Trypsin inhibitors, Alpha-amylase inhibitors, Gluten, Chaconine.

๐™ˆ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š ๐™ž๐™จ ๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™š๐™–๐™จ๐™ฎ ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ข๐™–๐™ก ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐™จ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง๐™˜๐™š!


The many many ways to use mince

We eat it for brekkie every morning and no, it doesn’t get boring, because we sometimes use different types, in different ways, not the same thing day in day out.

There are just so many ways to use ground meat, here are some, best as paleo versions of course…

Patties
Pasta sauce
Meatballs
Cottage Pie
Lasagne
Nachos
San choi bao
Meatza pizza base
Pizza topping
Koftas
Nuggets
Raw with egg yolk (beef mince)
Chilli con carne
Inside jaffles
Terrine
Cabbage rolls

Phew that’s a lot!

๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™›๐™–๐™ซ๐™š ๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™ข๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š ๐™ข๐™š๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™™๐™ž๐™จ๐™ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ข๐™–๐™ ๐™š?


My fave mince recipes

We eat mince every single day. Sometimes for multiple meals. We love it, obviously! And we never get sick of it because there are so many ways to use it.

Here are my fave cooking methods + recipes:

– Lamb mince fried on cast on, cooked down so most fat is gone and the meat is crunchy
– Beef mince jerky (or with beef heart added, so much nicer and healthier!)
– Paleo burgers either with cos lettuce leaf ‘buns’ or baked green banana flour buns
– Beef mince, kidney and liver patties with 2 fried eggs for brekkie
– Meat waffles (any mince and eggs)
– Turkey mince patties with Original Mingle Seasoning
– Spaghetti bolognese
– Chicken nuggets (using thigh and breast, not mince)
– Shepards Pie with a savoury mince base (fine diced veg, tomato paste, broth and coconut amino with beef mince) topped with mashed white flesh sweet potato
– Lamb lemon thyme mini meatballs, baked, as a yummy finger food
– Meat muffins – savoury mince of choice with egg, baked in muffin trays, makes a great easy healthy brekkie option to simply heat up in the oven and eat
– Pork mince as a primal meat lovers pizza with my green banana flour pizza base recipe, and paleo bbq sauce on top, along with bacon and GF salami

๐™ƒ๐™š๐™–๐™ฅ๐™จ ๐™ค๐™› ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š๐™จ๐™š ๐™ง๐™š๐™˜๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™š๐™จ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐™ค๐™ฃ ๐™ฌ๐™š๐™—๐™จ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™š


๐—ฆ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—น๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐˜€ (๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐˜‚๐—ฏ๐—ฏ๐˜†) ๐—ฎ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐˜๐—น๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฏ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ธ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต!

Clint’s good, he’ll try any food and he’ll eat foods he doesn’t necessarily love but knows are good for him, if he can stand them. But kids and partner’s aren’t always that easy to please when it comes to food. Our niece used to be super fussy with meals, she loved the choc avo pudding I made for sleepovers but would not have had it if she knew avo was in it, because at the time she hated avocado! Eventually she started like it and was happy to know she’d been eating it all those years lol but I was quite ok with her not knowing until that point!

Mince is brilliant food for hiding other healthy foods inside. Such as…

– Adding small amounts of minced up offal to make meatballs, patties etc
– Finely dicing or mushing veggies to add into almost any mince dish, meatballs, patties
– Adding herbs and spices for flavour
– Using bone broth for a mega nutrient-boost instead of stock (tastes like stock but is way better)
– Mixing pure grass-fed beef collagen and gelatin powders in, easiest when there’s some liquid or fat that’s liquidy
– Egg is NOT essential when making rissoles, patties and meatballs but egg (pastured) is super nutritious so adding even just the yolk into mince meals for those who won’t eat eggs as is, is a great option

What other ways can healthy ingredients be added to / hidden in mince?

Have you had to be a bit tricky like this for your family members?


Special bonus: new recipe!

Easy Peasy Pasta Sauce!

A much easier and quicker version of my original paleo bolognese recipe, this pasta recipe only needs a few ingredients and minimal cooking.

I hope you like it!


Click here for the brand new recipe


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health! Please comment if you have any questions.

Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaching | Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

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Taking Our Health to the Next Level: We’re Going Carnivore!

Carnivore diet

Well… 90% anyway!

Welcome to Part 1 of our Carnivore Diet Experiment!

If you’ve followed us for any period of time on any of our social media platforms, you receive our newsletters or have come to an event we’ve held you’ll know we’re big fans of Paleo in terms of both eating and other lifestyle elements. Paleo, to us, has meant eating as close to how our ancestors did but in a modern way, as well as moving and living as naturally as possible.

We successfully pulled off sustainable Paleo eating and living for over 8 years and in that time it improved our health and overall well-being. But eventually we realised the food element wasn’t doing enough good for us and something needed to change.

How did we know Paleo alone wasn’t working well enough for us?

Earlier this year I noticed I was getting sick regularly again which used to happen a lot before I was Paleo and before I made a big effort to get lots of direct Vitamin D from the sun. Also, my weight wasn’t balancing out, my hormones were out of whack, my lower back pain was back with a vengeance… basically I had too many symptoms showing me clearly I wasn’t ‘healthy’ and couldn’t ignore them anymore. The final straw was when I came down with a the worst full-blown flu I’ve had in a long time, just a few months ago. It was hell! And I wanted no more of feeling so tired, moody and in pain.

So Clint and I decided to do one of our usual yearly 30-day resets which consists of cleaning up our eating for a month (Paleo eating but excluding a few other often-inflammatory foods – absolutely no sugar, no alcohol, no coffee and no sugary fruit) and focusing on getting more sleep, more gentle natural movement and allowing some healing to happen.

Just before we started Clint chose to take it a step further and try the Carnivore Diet at the same time. We’d heard a bit about it in recent months as our Chiropractor (who’s also our friend) had experimented with it earlier in the year, we’d been seeing more posts about it on social media then Clint was researching it heavily to figure out if it was something he wanted to try. So he did!

I was shocked at first and not convinced it was a safe way to live but realised pretty quickly that trying it for one month couldn’t be a bad thing. I was learning through Clint what a healthy Carnivore Diet (we hate the word “diet” but it’s kinda needed here as “carnivore” alone doesn’t give enough of a description) entailed and even started implementing it a little in my own 30-day reset!

So, what the heck is eating ‘carnivore’ anyway?ย 

A 100% carnivore diet = 100% animal products and nothing else.

Meat, seafood, fat, offal, eggs. Plus salt.

A plate of nutrient-dense goodness. Source: The Strong Sistas

It’s keto but not regular ‘keto’ because it leaves out ALL plant foods whereas regular keto is simply low carb foods of any kind (often really unhealthy – just look at any keto product in a chemist or supermarket… yuck. Not to mention there’s little talk of the quality of foods eaten such as organic, grass-fed etc).

Carnivore leaves out low carb cauliflower, berries, olive oil, nuts and even avocado. But a result of carnivore can easily put the body into ketosis. Especially if no sugary animal milk products (such as milk) or honey are consumed.

Fruit and veg aren’t all they’re cracked up to be

Sounds really restrictive doesn’t it?

In this modern time with so many (way too many actually) food choices, yes it really does seem hugely restrictive because we’re so used to having an abundance of meal options every day of the week. Obviously this is not natural as humans originally would have had to hunt and gather all of their food, not having access to the corner store to pick up even simple eggs whenever they wanted, not to mention all the other types of foods we have access to these days.

When you get your head around what you’re ‘missing out’ on and understand the science behind it, it absolutely makes sense.

Having said that, one challenge can be doing without herbs and spices for flavour, especially because we’re all so used to having an abundance of them to choose from 24/7. But our choice to be 90% carnivore means we can have some basic flavourings if we like and we’re happy with limiting them to weekends as we find the taste of meat, eggs, fat and salt pretty good on their own anyway!

What does the ‘carnivore diet’ actually look like?

Eating nose to tail; animal muscle meats, organ meats, bone broth, gelatin, seafood, fat, eggs and sometimes animal milk products (but that last one is not essential). Plus clean salt for essential minerals and electrolytes.

No fruit, vegetables, herbs, spices, coconut, nuts, seeds, legumes, plant oils, tea or coffee (although, a lot of carnivores still have coffee).

That’s what a hardcore carnivore diet looks like anyway.

When you start experimenting with different meat and offal cuts and ways to prepare and cook all the carnivore-friendly foods it’s surprising just how much variety there actually is.

We don’t believe in going 100% carnivore for ourselves personally though. For a few reasons…

  • We know our ancestors consumed plant foods and that it’s a natural part of living. The thing is though, and why we’re cutting them out 90% of the time is, plant foods were only ever eaten to tied people over to the next animal kill which then provided the bulk of nutrients required for thriving, therefore plant foods were more of a ‘survival’ element, not staple food sources.
  • We enjoy foraging, the role it has in the evolution of humans and the connection it gives us to nature, our food and ourselves. We like going to the beaches and bushland near where we live and gathering berries, flowers, fruits pollen and seeds that haven’t been altered and modified for commercialisation. We find the whole practice from gathering outside in nature, to processing, experimenting and consuming extremely mindful, ‘slow’, fulfilling and rewarding on a deep level. We’ve been foragers for a while and always will be!
  • Many plant foods contain medicinal properties and play a role in improving health and well-being.
  • Our version of ‘balance’ includes consuming modern day ‘junk’ as well as conventionally ‘healthy’ foods (fruit, veg, seeds, nuts etc) sometimes because we simply want to. We like to socialise, we like to indulge sometimes, we like to cook and bake, we like to try new foods. Is this optimal for good health? Definitely not, but we’re trying to get a lot healthier, not perfectly healthy. We choose this and we accept the difficulties and challenges that come with it. But we also accept and are excited about the benefits of eating mostly very clean!

Gathering pine pollen

Pine pollen has medicinal uses and is fun to collect

Foraging for native lilly pilly fruit

Most of what we eat now is animal-base and we’ve mostly cut out fruit and veg because…

  • ALL plant foods contain natural built-in defences against being eaten by animals (i.e. including humans. We are animals), whereas animals don’t. Animals can try to run/fly/swim away from predators. Plants cannot. So they come with natural defences that are toxic to whatever consumes them. To give you an example… you’ve heard how we’re meant to soak and ‘activate’ nuts before eating them right? To try to break down the natural toxins (phytates) located on the outside, yeah? Exactly! Humans before 1. didn’t have access to many nuts and seeds in the first place, therefor wouldn’t have eaten many and 2. they wouldn’t have soaked and dried them out every time they wanted to eat some. In some cases they processed the bajeezus out of them (such as wattleseed, beans and other nuts and legumes) to make them suitable for consumption. The work that went into this was intense and time-consuming, from the harvesting to the processing and the cooking, but today we can simply pop down to the shop and buy the plant food already processed to consume in larger than traditionally normal quantities.ย  Eating plant foods with these natural defences may not seem to affect a consumer much, if at all, but it definitely does. Poor health symptoms are usually blamed on lifestyle elements, added toxins to foods such as chemicals used in the production, indoor lifestyle, even eating meat (!) etc but the reality is the anti-nutrients in plant foods are causing us humans issues.ย It’s just that the information we’re fed (pardon the pun!) is lacking and misleading.
  • The fact that plants contain anti-nutrients and animal foods don’t and that animal food nutrients are bio-available makes it an easy choice to eat mostly animal foods.

Vegetables fight back

For a long timeย  we’ve followed and trusted the professional opinions of many functional nutrition practitioners – from coaches to GP’s – thinking we were being really picky with where we sourced information from and we found a lot of the advice and tips from these people and resources to be hugely beneficial. We thought their information was the bees knees in terms of truly accurate insights into the ‘ultimate human diet and lifestyle’ but now we’re doubting that information and delving into a new level and way of thinking. Well, it’s not actually ‘new’ in terms of how long the information has been around and available, but it’s certainly new to us!

It’s not to say some of the guidelines we used to follow can’t be helpful to people. When I felt like I was truly healing for the first time in my life the eating plan given to me by a functional nutritional practitioner with over 12 years of practical experience consisted of a large amount of plant foods. I’m talking 100g fruit with brekkie (as well as egg yolks, a bit of meat, beef gelatin), 400g cooked veggies with lunch (small quantity of meat and fat) with 100g fruit, 300g veggies with dinner (again, small quantity of meat and fat as well) then pure organic orange juice (with beef gelatin) after dinner.

Wow that was a lot of food and a lot of plant stuff! But it worked. Within a couple of months of sticking to it about 90% of the time my period pain was gone, my weight was dropping smoothly, I had more energy and I was sleeping better. Woo hoo, success, finally!

That program worked really well for me. I loved how it made me feel. I loved that it included offal and good calories. But looking back now, I realise I felt instinctively nourished when I was including offal and gelatin more than the fruit and veggies. Also the plan did remove/reduce a lot of typical Paleo-friendly foods that are actually inflammatory over a long period of time such as pure organic cocoa, leafy greens, nuts and seeds. So that element would have made a difference on it’s own.

Cooked veggies and herbs are easier to digest but still not as easy as meat and fat

It’s funny because that same practitioner suggested I not play around with going keto because of the documented negative impacts to thyroid health over time, especially for those already suffering from low thyroid issues like I was This was actually one of my main concerns for going ‘carnivore’ because it leaves out all those supposedly simple and nourishing plant foods and definitely brings the body into a state of ketosis when followed properly.

But from what I’ve been learning about carnivore, the thyroid won’t be impacted in the long-term, it may just show up as fluctuations in the short-term – basically this is a long game approach to health.

And I wonder, is the thyroid ‘damage’ a symptom of nutrient deficiencies – whether on a keto plan or not – due to a lack of the vitamins and minerals available in nose-to-tail eating and just how much we actually need for true nourishment?

So where are we getting our information from and why should anyone else pay attention when it goes against so much of the ‘health’ advice available to us all?

One of the main sources of information we rely on is the factual data and opinions/experiences of Dr Paul Saladino (the surname is hilarious… Salad? I? No!. lol) who is a hardcore carnivore and backs everything up with science as well as personal experience.ย  His Fundamental Health Podcast is brilliant; combining a heap of scientific evidence with practical advice and easy to understand information.

The Carnivore MD

Pretty healthy looking considering all he eats is meat and fat!

Another great source of information and inspiration are The Strong Sistas who share some terrific info on the benefits and how-to of going carnivore. Their diet is pretty high in fat and calories because their workout regime is intense, so it wouldn’t mimic a regular person’s diet needs like ours and yours, but their content is fantastic and they’re really fun to watch.

Clint’s been enjoying the story of and content by Charlene Anderson on Meat Heals, while I’m enjoying the posts on Health Coach Kait‘s Facebook page.

There are many more carnivore diet promoters and experts out there, some only eat and promote eating ‘beef and water’ which seems pretty lacking in terms of nutrients and variety, while othersย  (like those mentioned above) advocate the nose-to-tail way, which we personally prefer.

Clint and I are about 2 months into our experiment now and finding out from trial and error what works for us, what feels good and what doesn’t, while ensuring we allow plenty of time for determining change and progress.

The next blog post – Part 2 – will be all about what we started out eating, what changes we’ve made, the benefits of carnivore and what we’ve noticed for ourselves, the challenges we’ve faced and the ins and outs of nose-to-tail carnivore eating including what “bio-available nutrients” mean + lots more. Stay tuned!

Aimee

Primal Influence –ย Mentoring + Training for kids + adults, based on the Sunshine Coast, QLD

Find out more about what we do, our services + upcoming events, plus register for Primal E-News HERE

 

 

 

Recipe: Easy Chicken Coconut Curry (Paleo + dairy-free)

A great way to enjoy warming, comforting, hearty and healthy meals in the cooler months is to take advantage of energy-efficient and easy-to-use kitchen appliances like slow cookers!

 

One of my favourite dishes to make in my slow cooker is my Chicken Coconut Curry. It’s so easy to make, it’s really versatile, and it’s a great dish for those who don’t enjoy rich and spicy curries. I’ve actually given taste testers of my recipe to people who don’t normally eat curry and they’ve loved it!

 

It’s Autumn here in South East QLD right now so it’s cooling down and feeling like the right time to start making hearty soups, stews and curries. So here’s my Chicken Coconut Curry recipe for you to use and enjoy…

 

CHICKEN COCONUT CURRY

 

You’ll need:

4 organic chicken thighs or 2 breasts, chopped
1 tin Ayam coconut milk
1 large brown onion, chopped
2 carrots, cubed
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp ginger (or more if you like), minced
2 fresh organic tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp organic curry powder
2 tsp turmeric powder
Himalayan salt, pepper to taste
Good cooking fat (ghee, coconut oil, olive oil, animal fat etc.)
Piece of fresh lemongrass
Up to 1 cup bone broth and/or water
Optional: Chili if you like heat, paprika, coriander leaves for flavour and garnish, other herbs and spices of choice, spinach leaves, celery

To do:

  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan on low, add onions and allow to cook gently
  2. Add garlic and chicken and slowly increase the temp but watching onion and garlic donโ€™t burn
  3. Add carrot to the saucepan along with the spices, lemongrass, any other herbs, salt, pepper, tomato, broth/water and coconut milk to the saucepan and reduce heat to a gentle simmer
  4. Once all ingredients are cooked through, the carrot is soft and the liquid has reduced slightly, remove the piece of lemongrass
  5. Serve by spooning the curry mixture over a flattened heap of cauliflower or white rice on a plate. Garnish with coriander leaves

Easy!

 

Enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚

Aimee

Food + Cooking Coach –ย Primal Influence

Recipe: Paleo Meatballs & Veggies with Noodles 2-Ways

I don’t always consume nightshades because I have a bit of sensitivity to them, so I often enjoy creating variety with meals totally leaving out tomato, chilli, garlic, paprika.. basically all the good stuff lol and finding flavour without those common flavour options.

As most of you know, I also like to create meals that are quick, easy and super healthy. Sometimes my creative moments actually work out well and the other night was one of those occasions when I created a new meat and veg dish that got double thumbs up from Clint, woo! AND it made 4 meals worth in one go, bonus!

I decided to make meatballs, a non-tomato sauce and have some noodles… and I created Meatballs and Veggies with Noodles 2-Ways – delicious, super healthy, really easy to make, a total win!

Here’s the basic recipe I created but feel free to play around with it and make it work best for you and your family ๐Ÿ™‚

Pumpkin Sauce Meatballs meal

MEATBALLS & VEGGIES WITH NOODLES 2-WAYS

Makes 4 serves

You’ll need:

500g mince (I used turkey, you could use chicken, lamb, beef etc)

1 cup pumpkin, peeled and diced

1/2 cup bone broth (grab our free e-book here if you don’t already know about bone broth)

1 large brown onion, peeled and finely chopped

2 large carrots (peel if not organic), finely chopped

Fat/oil for cooking in (I use rendered grass-fed animal fat, ghee or coconut oil)

2-4 tsp each of cumin powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder

Himalayan salt, pepper to taste

1 large zucchini, ‘zoodled’ using a noodle machine of some kind, or just peeled into long narrow strips

Optional: 1 packet konjac ‘Spaghetti’ noodles (available from supermarkets and health food stores) (I used these because Clint’s not a fan of a lot of zoodles, and these have great texture, more like ‘real’ noodles)

 

Do this:

  1. Make small balls with the mince, by rolling around even amounts into balls in your hands
  2. Heat a large fry pan to medium temp and add the fat/oil, carrot and onion. Place the meatballs in then put the lid on and allow to cook through
  3. In a medium saucepan of boiling water add the pumpkin and allow to book completely through so when you pierce a piece with a knife it easily cuts through. Strain the water and place pumpkin in a food processor or blender
  4. Add the spices, salt, pepper and bone broth to the pumpkin mix and blitz until totally combined and there are no more chunks. It won’t take long to become a sauce
  5. Pour the sauce into the frypan with the veggies and meatballs, carefully stir, place the lid back on and allow to cook for a couple of minutes
  6. Place noodles on plate or in a bowl ready then when the frypan mixture is ready (the sauce should be a little thicker, the meatballs are cooked through, the carrot and onion are soft) spoon it on top of the noodles
  7. Done! Easy!

This made 4 serves so Clint had lunch ready for work the next day, it’s fine to have cold, and I had my dinner sorted for the next night. Yay!

Pumpkin Sauce Meatballs meal 2

Kids will love this ย because pumpkin gives sweetness, noodles and meatballs are fun and it’s a bright coloured dish!

It’s so healthy because it’s jam-packed full of nourishing veggies, a little bit of meat, the bone broth contains gelatin and essential minerals, the turmeric is anti-inflammatory and the fat in there balances it all out nicely.

You could add some coconut amino (with or without chilli and garlic in it) to the sauce to give it a flavour boost. You could use different noodles. You can add different herbs and spices. This recipe is so versatile!

Enjoy! Please let me know how you go and how this idea helps you in the kitchen!

Aimee x

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For Today:

  1. a fun day cooking with a friend
  2. a really fun Primal Fitness Class yesterday
  3. the Daniel Vitalis sleep podcast I listened to while writing this
  4. going for nice walks at sunrise
  5. walking barefoot everywhere and how good it feels

 

Recipe: Easy Paleo Honey No-Soy Chicken

At our last meetup on the weekend Clint and I took along a few paleo goodies for t he picnic, and the honey soy chicken I made was a huge success.

 

Especially with my little friend Lachy who has a lot of food allergies and often can’t eat much at meetup picnics. I always try to include something he can have and this time he scoffed down the chicken, with a big smile on his cute little face. So I thought I’d better get this super easy, tasty recipe up on the blog for more people to enjoy!

 

Remember… my recipes are pretty much always really simple and easy, I’m not into overly fancy meals because often a lot of ingredients with a lot of processes involved in putting them together can ย be confusing on the gut. So if you like my kinda view of cooking then you’ll like my recipes.. I hope ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

HONEY NO-SOY CHICKEN

Pollo a la soja, miel y limn

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celcius

You’ll need:

2 x free-range chicken breasts

3 tbsp coconut amino (for nightshade-free I use Matakana range available here, but otherwise use Niulife or a similar brand)

IMG_20150710_111018

2 tbsp local raw honey

Salt and pepper to taste

Optional: crushed garlic, ginger

 
Do this:

For the time-poor folk…

1. Cut chicken into strips or cubes and place in a deep oven dish

2. Add the coconut amino, honey and salt/pepper

3. Get your hands in there and mix thoroughly so the sauce is coated evenly over the chicken

4. Place in the oven, uncovered, and set the timer for 20 minutes. Then at 20 minutes get the tongs or a large spoon and mix the chicken around so the inside raw pieces move to the outside and all chicken cooks properly

5. Place back in the oven for another 20 or so minutes or until all chicken is cooked through

6.ย There’ll be a lot of liquid at the end but I like using this as sauce for pouring over veggies as it can be placed in a container in the fridge and used later, or it can be simmered down on the stove right away to thicken up. Add some arrowroot to create a honey soy gravy

7. Store chicken in an airtight glass container in the fridge. It’s great served cold! If you include the liquid, you’ll find it’ll become jelly once refrigerated, yay!

Now for those with more time up their sleeves…

1. Follow steps 1-3 as above but then place in a container in the fridge for a few hours to marinate. This will infuse the flavours into the chicken more

2. Then cook and store as mentioned above

How easy is that!?!

It will go great sided with cauli rice, veggie mash or mixed into a salad
Enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚

Aimee

 

5 Things I’n Grateful For Today:

1. A fun meetup at the Glasshouse Mountains and people enjoying my food

2. The 30 mins of magical #NakedSunTime I just got on the balcony

3. Wrestling Clint yesterday and finally getting him to the ground, woo!

4. My ‘Cowgirl’ mug cos it’s cool!

5. Country music

Recipe: Paleo Pecan Biscuits

I attempted my own version of a paleo-friendly pecan biscuit recipe not long after we got home from our trip to Moree, because Tony at Three Apples Organics gave me 2 bags of organic pecans!

I’m not a huge fan of eating a lot of paleo baked sweets, especially when full of nuts and seeds (due to the unhealthy changes that happen when nuts and seeds are heated, and the typical nutrient overwhelm that occurs in these kinds foods, making it tough on the gut to digest) but because I very rarely get to use or eat pecans, and I had so many of them I thought… why not get experimenting in the kitchen to see what I could come up with?!

And of course, I wouldn’t recommend eating these every day, but as a treat now and then, why not?!

S0… at this time I was still pretty new to using banana flour, and I wanted to play around with it a bit more and decided to include it in this recipe because I’d read it’s great for creating a nice biscuity texture.

One day I had a go at making a batch of biccies using the banana flour, pecans and other basic paleo ingredients. But Clint and I both agreed that while the biscuity texture was in fact great, the flavour was lacking a little. Basically… they were too boring. I couldn’t have that now could I!

 

So this week I finally gave it another crack and I think I’ve nailed it! Andย I’d love to share my new recipe with you all!

biscuit1

PALEO PECAN BISCUITS

Makes 8 large biscuits

You’ll Need:

1 tbsp arrowroot flour

1/2 tbsp Great Lakes beef gelatin powder (grab some here!)

1 tbsp coconut flour

3 tbsp Natural Evolution Foods banana flour

1 tsp each of nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla powder

1/2 tsp each of aluminium-free bicarb soda, rice/gluten-free baking powder, Himalayan salt

1/2 cup crushed pecans, lightly toasted (organic if possible)

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

4 tbsp ghee (or coconut oil)

2 tbsp pure Grade B maple syrup

2 pastured organic eggs

 

Do This:

1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celsius

2. Add all dry ingredients into a bowl and mix well

3. In a tall, narrow jug add the wet ingredients and use a stick blender to mix well (or use a whisk or food processor but stick blenders are so quick and emulsify so well)

4. Next combine the wet and dry ingredients together and mix really well. It should be quite a thick batter, not runny at all

5. Place a sheet of baking paper on an oven tray and spoon dollops of batter onto the paper, spread out. I used about a tablespoon of mixture each biscuit which ended up in large biscuits because of how much the mixture rises and spreads while baking, so you can be quite minimalย with how much you use so you have more biscuits to go around

biscuit3

6. Bake in the oven for around 20 mins, depending on your oven keep an eye on them (mine is not the best to go off unfortunately!), you’re wanting the biscuits to be dark brown on the bottom and edges but not as dark on top or they may be burnt underneath.

7. Once cooked through, remove from the oven and allow to cool. Then dish them out… but they won’t last long!

biscuit2

The texture should be slightly soft and moist inside while still crunchy and biscuity on the outside. Compared to the first attempt I did at making these, when the texture all the way through was dry, this recipe is much nicer and got the thumbs up from Clint when he tried them!

 

You don’t have to stick to this flavour combination. Especially if you can’t get a hold of quality raw pecans. How about swapping for macadamias and honey? Or walnuts and maple? If you stick to the base recipe and swap the nuts and sweetener around you can come up with some pretty unique biccies that the whole family can enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚

 

I appreciate the input of Dan the Aussie Paleo Chef, with the suggestion of toasting the pecans beforehand, and adding in the extra egg, as I’d used raw nuts and only 1 egg the first time. I’m happy to say though, the inclusion of arrowroot and gelatin was my idea and I’m so happy with the outcome!

I hope you enjoy making and devouring these biscuits!

Happy paleo baking ๐Ÿ™‚

Aimee

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For:

1. Using quality ingredients to make healthy foods

2. My paleo journey which is leading me to better health

3. Sunny days

4. Going camping in the bush

5. Fluffy winter socks!

Welcome to our new blog!

Well, it’s essentially the same blog, just a different platform. We were using Google blogger but due to it’s PMS-like behaviour we decided recently to make the switch to the ever popular WordPress. Let’s hope it’s nicer to us than Google!

As our first post we’ve decided to use one of our very first blog posts: ‘So what’s this ‘primal’ caper all about?!’

It really explains what ‘primal living’ means to us and why it’s our lifestyle. Here it is! Enjoy!

Hunter

priยทmal
Adjective
Essential; fundamental.
Relating to an early stage in evolutionary development; primeval.

‘Primal’ to us might be totally different to what ‘primal’ means to you, so let’s explain what living a primal lifestyle means to us…

When we think of primal we think ‘living naturally’. In the early stages of evolutionary development the world was a cleaner and less-toxic place and people lived cleaner and less-toxic lives.

The food they ate and the water they drank wasn’t ridden with man-made chemicals, the exercise they did wasn’t performed in a gym, they weren’t exposed to radiation from electronic devices, they weren’t cooped up indoors or sitting at desks for long periods of time, the air they breathed wasn’t polluted, and they had a lot less emotional stresses to deal with.

These days it’s a little different. We eat food that’s often grown using chemicals, our water supply comes from water treatment plants that add fluoride and other poisons, many of us exercise in gyms on machines and with made-man equipment, we are constantly surrounded by electronic devices and radiation, we spend much of our time sitting down and being indoors, the air we breathe is polluted and we have a heck of a lot of emotional stress in our lives.

chemical

What does all that lead to? Sickness. So many of us are riddled with sickness and illness. Viruses are reinventing themselves so they can resist the medicines we make. That’s kinda scary! How many people do you know are sick with something? Whether it be regular headaches or migraines, colds and flus, injuries, gut problems, cancer; most of the population is sick!

 

Today we aren’t thriving, we are just barely surviving. Wouldn’t you agree?

 

We’d like to get back to living how nature intended and giving our bodies the best chance at being healthy! And it’s possible to do! Okay, so we can’t completely avoid all the chemicals, toxins, EMF’s etc but we can certainly minimise our exposure to them and try to lead as natural an existence as possible.

So what do we do to live a more primal lifestyle? Here are just some of the ways we actively live more primal…

 

Eat mostly grass-fed chemical-free meat

cattle

 

 

 

Eat mostly organic or spray-free fruit and vegetables

 

Minimise consumption of foods we haven’t yet evolved to eat safely and that cause health problems such as grains, legumes, sugar etc

 

Photo from theglutenfreeprofessor.com

 

Exercising safely and functionally for the body to minimise injury and inflammation by performing natural, primal movements

_2014_PI_145

 

Spending a lot of time outdoors and going barefoot on the earth to get the health benefits from being among nature

IMG_20140515_202009

 

Using mindfulness techniques and natural therapies to help us tap into our inner wisdom, to quiet our minds, to rejuvenate, relax and stress less

 

mediation lady  -busy world

 

Using chemical-free and environmentally-friendly products around the home and on our bodies

 

Incorporating sustainable practices such as growing our own food, recycling, buying recycled products, composting, picking up rubbish in public, buying locally and buying less plastic

 

You might be thinking.. “So, you’re Paleo then?” well yes and no. We do use some Paleo principles but we don’t label ourselves as ‘Paleo’ or any other definition because we don’t follow any one particular set of guidelines.

We’re very proud of the positive steps we’ve made to live a more primal lifestyle, for our own personal benefit but also for the benefit of the environment and other people. We want to become healthier, happier people but we also want others to become healthier and happier. We feel it’s everyone’s right to have the best chance possible at achieving good health and wellness.

 

We want us and everyone out there to THRIVE, not just survive!

But, we’re far from perfect. We sometimes eat things that aren’t the healthiest for us, we sometimes drink tap water, we sometimes don’t do a few of those things listed above. But for the most part we do live by them and that’s another aspect we believe is part of primal living… balance. We aren’t caveman and we have temptations and other obstacles all around us, so the key is to find a balance that makes us happy. We believe we live a 90% primal lifestyle and that’s pretty good as far as we’re concerned!

We haven’t yet reached a point where we feel we lead a ‘perfect’ lifestyle; we aren’t as healthy and happy as we’d like to be. But we’re striving for it and we’ll continue to learn and grow every day and make the most of our lives.

If you like the idea of living a more primal lifestyle.. you can totally do it! Start small, use baby steps, make little changes every day and you’ll start to notice positive changes in your health and your happiness.

Our website and this blog are aimed at providing information and inspiration for you to add more primal aspects into your life, so please feel free to use any of the information at any time. And go ahead and share it around to benefit others!

Do you live a primal lifestyle? Feel free to tell us about it in a comment below!

Or shoot us any questions you might have!

Thanks
Clint & Aimee

 

We’ve decided it’d be a cool thing to do to end each blog post with 5 things we’re grateful for, so here are today’s 5…

1. Having this blog so we can express ourselves and help inspire others
2. All the sunny days we’ve had lately
3. Having a nice home and nice belongings
4. Camping trips
5. Knowledge about health and wellness that we’re constantly gaining
http://www.primalinfluence.com

Do you have any questions or suggestions? Drop us a line!