To-Go Breakfast and lunch ideas (Paleo and Whole 30 Approved!)

Prepping on a Sunday is key to having meals ready for the week to grab and go. This week I made a few new delicious recipes and even learned a new trick too!!

 

The most exciting new item I made came from my new cookbook! I recently purchased this cook book from Amazon! It’s a great book, with lots of recipes, ideas, and even a little section about Paleo! I like that it’s an “on the go” recipe book as well since I’m usually “on the go”! IMG_0001

Here’s the recipe: Bacon and Egg Salad with fresh herbs!

Ingredients: (makes 4 servings. I cut mine in half so it was just for me!)

  • 8 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp fresh minced parsley
  • 1 tbsp fresh minced basil
  • 1 tbsp fresh chives, chopped
  • 2 tbsp red onion
  • 1/3 cup of mayo (they had a recipe, I used my Tessemae’s instead!
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 strips bacon, crumbled
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions: (The first part is my new trick!! So excited!)

  1. To hard boil the eggs, fill a medium-sized pot with water and bring to a boil. Reduce and summer. Add baking soda and salt. Gently add eggs with a slotted spoon* and simmer lightly for 14 minutes.
  2. When done, drain the pot of water and crack the eggs by shaking the pot and allowing them to hit the side of it. Add cold water and allow to sit while you chop the herb and onion.
  3. Peel the eggs and place in a bowl. Break the eggs up with your warns into small chunks
  4. Add the herbs, mayo, mustard, lemon juice, onion, and bacon. Season with Salt and Pepper

Yum Yum. I put mine over a small side salad with balsamic dressing…Also Tessemae’s. Plus an apple for dessert!

I also found in the recipe book Sweet potato apple-cinnamon pancakes!! Wowza’s! Super east and delicious. I put that together with 3 sausages for my protein and a side of grapes! Yum!

Another breakfast I made was 2 eggs over medium. (People always look at me funny when I say that. They look at me funny too when I tell them I like my coffee black.) Over Medium….that just means I like the yolk cooked through a little more. No runny yolk here.

So I cooked 2 eggs OVER MEDIUM with 2 slices of bacon, a side of sautéed veggies, and a banana.

I recently purchased this small egg frying pan. It’s the perfect size to fry eggs and not waste a whole big pan. Plus I make the hubby Egg McMuffin’s, so I whip 2 eggs with a little milk and put it in here. It fits perfectly on his english muffin with bacon and cheese! Yum for him too!

Plus I used to make the Sweet potato apple cinnamon pancakes so that would be a nice perfect size! It’s a multipurpose pan now!

Small Egg Frying Pan

Small Egg Frying Pan

*Slotted spoon just means that it has holes in, so when you put the egg in the water, it goes in a little more gently than one without.

Check back soon to see if I make any more delicious recipes from my new book! Plus I’ll have some budgeting posts coming up and more menu’s for next month!

Whole 30 Menu Prep and how to do it

We all know from previous posts how much I love making menu’s. I almost wish sometimes I owned a restaurant so I could make up amazing menu’s for everyone!! Here are some tips for making your menu’s and especially if you are doing a Whole 30. This is a good way to budget your spending and getting the most out of you groceries!

What should each meal have?

Each meal should contain certain credential. These are important so that you have a well-rounded meal and more importantly stay full in-between meals. The importance is in this order!

  1. Protein Source
  2. Veggies
  3. Fat
  4. Fruit

Drafting your menu Start with breakfast

When I draft my menu, I start with breakfast. I go through the whole month and fill in every breakfast. Breakfast is a meal that I love, but if I eat the same thing over and over, I get sick of it pretty quick. I make sure to rotate all of my options and sometimes add in new ones. Any time you add a new recipe into your menu, it gives you something to get excited about! I keep my breakfasts well-rounded with the above credentials. Here are some different breakfast options:

  • Zucchini and Sweet Potato Latkes with Grapefruit (mixes with Egg for protein and cooked in oil for fat)
  • Soft Boiled Eggs, Tomatoes, and Avocado with salt and pepper
  • Butternut Squash Porridge (I know how it sounds, but don’t believe it)
  • Egg and Prosciutto Roll-up with asparagus
  • Scotch Eggs with tomato and cucumber salad
  • Egg and veggie scramble with homemade sausage patties

Lunch and Dinner

The most important strategy I use for lunches and dinners is to share veggies in each meal. Produce tends to go bad quickly or not get used at all. When I make my menu, I make sure to choose 2-3 veggies for that week and split it up between all the meals. I may make the butternut squash porridge and have roasted squash with dinner a different night. Or I may make roasted beets with dinner and used the leftovers to toss with a salad.

If I make something that I know will have leftovers or I can make more of, I make sure to note that I will take that for lunch the next day.

I’ll share some of these recipes on my January Journey and let you know how I like everything and any tips or tricks I can share.

So here’s my January 5-11th menu: January 5th-11th Menu (downloadable menu for you!)

 

jan 5th-11th menu

Sunday Food Day

Breakfast: Quick Frittata

I love making Frittata. It’s super easy and it stays good in the fridge for a pretty good amount of time. Up to 6 days if you store it in a nice airtight container! This was a bacon, potato, & pepper frittata.

I make bacon in the oven. Yes, in the oven. It’s so quick, it doesn’t make a big mess, and your house doesn’t smell of bacon for a whole week. I lay the strips of bacon on a tin foil covered cookie sheet, I put it in a COLD  oven and pre-heat to 400°. Once the oven is pre-heated, I set the timer for 10 minutes and then Voilà! Yummy bacon.

Meanwhile, I’ll sauté the chopped up peppers and canned diced potatoes in a little olive oil. I place those in the bottom of a pie dish. Then I whip up the eggs with a little S&P and a little full-fat coconut milk.

Once the bacon is done, I crumble it up and add it to the pie dish. Then, I pour the eggs over everything and shimmy the dish around until it settles. Again 400° for 20 minutes. That’s why I like using bacon in frittata too, the ovens already preheated and ready to go!

 

Lunch: Italian Chop Salad (Idea from: Italian Chopped Salad)

Since the recipe had pasta, a home-made dressing, and several different cheeses in it, I had to tweak the salad to fit me. I like to look at recipes more for ideas than to actually follow it. Remember that most recipes can be modified to suit your needs and if your unsure as to how to change it, use google! Look at a few websites to see if they all recommend something similar. Usually, they do. Be careful, however, as this does NOT apply to baking, which is why I do not bake! Baking requires you to follow each and every step to the T!

I like to keep my food separate until I’m ready to eat it, so I placed in one container with two separate compartments: chopped artichokes, marinated mushrooms, black olives, chickpeas, and on the other side, I place the chopped pepperoni and salami.  Once I’m ready to eat, I put everything together and use a little balsamic and olive oil as dressing.

Lunch: Lox over Salad

I also made four salads for the week. I can grab them in a pinch for lunch or dinner. I can always find a protein source to buy and add, like hard-boiled eggs or Lox. Lox is super yummy and goes great over a salad. Most people think: Bagel, Lox, and cream cheese. I like to slice mine and throw it over a salad with a little balsamic and olive oil. It’s nice to have something already prepared to grab, so I cut up the left over Lox and leave it in the fridge just incase! It is a little pricey, but sometimes Whole Foods will have it on sale, so I usually buy it then as a little indulgence.

Dinner: Recipe: Pan Roasted Lemon Chicken

This was a pretty easy dish to make and it was absolutely DELICIOUS! I’ve never really made chicken thighs before because for some reason I had it in my head that I wasn’t a dark meat fan…but boy was I wrong. They were so juicy, tender, and flavorful. I don’t add that much lemon juice because the hubby isn’t a big fan. So I used a fresh lemon and just squeezed as much out of it as I could. I used a little lemon zest (Lemon Zest is a taking a cheese grater and grating some of the rind of the lemon! They make it sound so much more complicated), and a little lemon pepper spice that I had from a gourmet spice company. I used my dutch oven too! A dutch oven is a pan or pot that can be cooked stove top and in the oven. You usually want to use it when you first need to sauté and then place in the oven or if you are slow cooking meats. They are usually pretty heavy as they are made of cast iron or enamel.

The hubby and I like different sides so I had mashed cinnamon sweet potatoes and roasted asparagus and he had stuffing and carrots. Our plates were clean when we were done eating!!

 

Keep an eye out this week for: Some Fall Decorations and Fall fashion posts!!!

Next weeks Sunday Prep Day, I’ll post: Tuna Cakes, Skillet Steak, Prosciutto Wrapped Peaches with fresh basil, and Some Yummy Chicken Wings!!!

Sunday Prep

Hey Guys!! Sorry I went on a 2 week hiatus. Blogging is tough when life gets hectic and my house has sure been hectic!!! With that said, today it my 1 year wedding anniversary. So we did it married style….with food shopping. Of course we have exciting dinner plans for later, but I wanted to make sure to get back in touch with Olives and Polka Dots…

 

I started taking Spanish classes after work on Mondays, so I needed to make sure to have something substantial to hold me over in between meals…so my Monday snack looks like this:

I made Mondays lunch easy, just cereal with coconut milk and hard-boiled eggs for protein. Especially because I’m going to have such a hefty snack in the afternoon.

I also made an asparagus, egg, and bacon salad with a Honey Dijon dressing for Tuesday lunch: Asparagus, Egg, and Bacon salad

Last week I made a delicious dish that I wanted to make sure to share with everyone!!!

This was easy to make and delicious!!! I took the asparagus and made bundles of 4. Then I sprayed them with Whole Foods Olive oil spray, seasoned with salt and pepper, and then wrapped with the prosciutto. Then I cooked it on 400 for 20 minutes, or until the asparagus was tender. To make it fit in my lunch container, I had to cut them in half. I also made my favorite salad: cucumber and tomato salad with mayo and a little siracha sauce. And I added blueberries for dessert!! Yummy!!!

So, that is this weeks meals, sorry to keep it brief, but I need to go beautify myself for a special date tonight!!! See you soon…no more hiatus’ either!!!!

Rotisserie Chicken Meals

I love buying rotisserie chickens, from one chicken I am able to usually get 6 meals from it! It’s easy to just pick up on busy night and not have to “cook” anything! I just shred the chicken and then make whatever meals I can. Here’s what I made with my last rotisserie chicken:

  • BBQ Chicken– I put BBQ sauce over the shredded chicken and mix it up. Anthony makes a BBQ chicken pizza on NAAN bread with cheese and red onion and I put mine over salad with a little extra BBQ sauce for salad dressing.
  •  Chicken Salad- I make this for lunch for both of us. I mixed the shredded chicken with paleo compliant mayo, red onion, and celery. Anthony will toast an english muffin and put his chicken salad on that as a sandwich. I put mine in a lettuce wrap and pack veggies to nibble on too!
  • Buffalo Chicken Mac n Cheese for Anthony:  I followed this easy recipe Betty Crockers Mac and Cheese. I cut the recipe in half since I don’t eat it and then Anthony will still have another serving to bring for lunch the next day.
  • Pesto Chicken “Pasta”: I made the zucchini noodles again (How to make Zucchini Noodles) and sautéed them with shredded chicken and pesto sauce. This is another quick and easy meal and takes less than 20 minutes to make.

After I shred the whole chicken, I take the bones and put them in the freezer.  Then over the weekend, or when I have a chance, I make fresh chicken broth with the bones. Here’ the recipe I use: Crock Pot Chicken Broth. Its pretty easy to make and I love fresh chicken broth because it taste so much better than store-bought brands. Plus, I can freeze it and keep it for a long time for quick soups in the winter!

So for a $10 rotisserie chicken, I have 6 meals we can eat now, probably 4 servings of broth for soup for later, and I didn’t even really have to make a mess in the kitchen! Now that’s Easy Peasy!!!!

62 Wharf and Wine Bar

Last night was Girls Night and they said I should start reviewing the restaurants we go to on my blog!! (Want to see how Girls Night started?? Check out my first blog post about it: Isn’t it quaint?) What a great idea?!?! Do you guys want to see restaurant reviews? Let me know!!

So last night we went to 62 Wharf and Wine bar in Salem, Ma. 62 Wharf and Wine Bar   It was Annette’s birthday and I happen to have a gift card to 62 Wharf, I figured we could use it to celebrate! The menu looked great.

For appetizers

  • We started with the Arancini: Small size and delicious. It came with three, but the waitress said we could add-on one more. (There are 4 of us that go out). They also brought over fresh bread and oil when our arancini came out.

For the entrée:

  • Two of us had the gnocchi with short ribs. The short ribs were so good, they practically melted in your mouth and the gnocchi was cooked to perfection. Sometimes gnocchi can get a little mushy, this was not. The sauce was mild and it was an all around delicious dish. Very filling and the portion size was perfect. Jamie also got the rosemary roasted potatoes as a side those were very good as well!
  • The other two had Lobster Pappardelle. They both liked their dishes, but the lobster came in the shell. They thought it would have been like lazy man lobster and  it was a little more messy work than they were anticipating. The pasta was pretty thick as well. Annette had the spicy broccoli rabe and Mandy and I split asparagus as a sides. The sides were a larger, share-able portions.

For Dessert: 

  • We each chose one and then tried each others
    • Warm Toffee pudding was delicious. It had a nice toffee syrup and a little piece of chocolate cake. It was warm and perfect in every way!
    • Chocolate was chocolate cake with hazelnut gelato and that was also delicious! It had little pieces of grounded espresso beans, and I didn’t really love that part because I had little pieces stuck in my teeth afterwards!
    • Strawberry Rhubarb Crostada was pretty delicious as well and my friend seemed pretty happy with it. I have never had this type of dish before, so it is hard to compare what I imagined it would be like.
    • And last but not least: Just gelato. She had hazelnut and vanilla and enjoyed it as well.

I mean its dessert…how can you not enjoy all of it?

Experience/Atmosphere: 

  • The atmosphere was definitely a little fancier than I had expected. It was “Modern Italian Food” with tapas size dishes. Usually, I think, Italian means big plates and lots of leftovers, but we all felt like we had the perfect sized entrée. The waitress also let us know that anything on the menu could be adjusted to your liking and you could swap anything you wanted. They had a gluten-free menu and all of the pasta is hand-made as well. They brought water over to the table and left a large “jug” of water for us. We had iced tea and seltzer water as well. We were all starving when we arrived and they asked if we wanted bread but it didn’t come out right away, it came out when we had our appetizer. We waited a little bit longer than usual in between the appetizer and our main dishes, but once they arrived it was so delicious we didn’t really notice. The waitress was really nice and one of us is a pescatarian (a vegetarian that eats fish) and she let her know she could customize the dishes to her liking. Also, I booked on Opentable and left a note that one of us were celebrating a birthday and they were very accommodating to make sure she had a special dessert and candle to blow-out for the occasion.

Final decision:                                                              8 out of 10

  • All around we really enjoyed it. I think this is better for a fancier dinner, like an anniversary or birthday celebration, and I would recommend it to someone who was looking for that type of elegant environment. However, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend to everyone. If you have picky eaters (like Anthony) this may be a tough spot; even though you can mix and match and make it your liking, it’s definitely a different type of style. The food was absolutely delicious, however I was disappointed in the wait time between asking for bread and the actual arrival and the fact that we waited so long in between appetizers and the entrée. Even though the food was absolutely delicious, I was a tiny, tiny bit disappointed with the service.