Monthly Archives: May 2012

Frakin’ Tasty Bison Burgers with Tomato, Avocado and Fennel Salsa

Dearest readers:

My life has been a flurry as of late. Selling a house is hard work, annoying and nerve wrecking. Every time my iPhone rang, I got nervous hoping it was my agent with an offer. While we did sell our house a few days ago (WOO!), it is NOT something I wish to repeat, uh…EVER. Random strangers walking through your house when you’re not there, being kicked out on your day off ALL DAY. It’s nutty. But we’re psyched about the new place, and now that the house is sold, we can concentrate on that.

Crossfit utterly destroyed me today. I mean, seriously. It was the first time I’d ever felt ill after a WOD (workout-of-the-day), but not necessarily sick-to-my-stomach ill. More like completely exhausted, slightly faint and spaced out.

I’d gone later in the day than I was used to, and had nothing to eat that morning. Granted, doing fasted workouts is something I’ve been experimenting with over the last 1-2 weeks and feeling great about. I imagine the very fact that I lounged around too long this morning, and drank coffee (which I normally don’t do before a WOD – way too dehydrating) was causing an exhausting workout. Not in a good way.

However, there’s always a silver lining kicking around some cloud…isn’t there? I picked up some egg white protein powder from a local supplements place (Popeye’s, to be exact), and some omega-3 capsules. I came home, still feeling funny, and whipped up the TASTIEST PROTEIN SHAKE EVAH. It tasted just like vanilla ice cream. I’m not even joking. In fact, just writing about it right now is making me crave one, even though I just stuffed my face on the proceeding unbelievable meal.

The shake, since I know you Crossfitters are out there reading this, is really quite simple.

2 1/2 scoops vanilla custard flavoured egg white protein powder
1 small very, very ripe banana
1 cup coconut water
1 heaping tablespoon of strawberry greek yogurt (Liberté brand is amazing)

Blend. Drink. OHMYGOD! It’s vanilla ice cream, isn’t it?! This is something magical that will make that dreaded whey shake a thing of the past. The yucky-tasting past!

Edited March 27th, 2015. Sooooo…funny thing about this supposedly amazeballs protein powder. Not long after consuming shakes made with it, I broke out in a RASH ALL OVER MY TORSO. I returned it. End of story.

I picked up some ground bison from Medium Rare after my WOD the other day. I love me some bison. It is more tender than beef, the texture is smoother, and it has a meatier taste, if you can believe it. It’s special.

Today was an absolutely GORGEOUS day. Hot, hot, hot. Like, break-out-the-shorts-and-shave-your-legs kinda day. Wifey and I enjoyed a ride out to Heavy Duty Cycles today so she could drop off her Sportster for repairs. Turns out the shop had closed 20 minutes prior.

Crap.

I did the only reasonable thing I could think of doing. Why get mad after driving all-the-way out to Scarborough?

Call Tony. On his cell.

Bam. Problem solved. Leave the bike. It’ll be fine. He’ll be there in a few hours.

Awesome.

On the way home, Linda and I discussed our honeymoon plans to LA, and how rad it’s going to be; we are also moving in to our fabulous new house when we get home. SO MUCH WIN is on the way, folks.

We went to Zet’s where Linda ate a stupid, Hulk-sized double pattie hamburger (which bacon and cheese, atta girl) no less. I ate a 10 oz steak, two eggs, the puny, sad looking tomatoes and romaine they put on the side of the plate to look purdy, and a couple home fries.

Why do people think I’m vegetarian again?

We returned home. After busying myself in the kitchen for a little while, this is what came out. And yes, I ate again.

Fennel is an amazing vegetable. Definitely a favourite of mine. If you don’t like liquorice – I’m sorry, what do you mean you don’t like liquorice? I don’t know you. Flee from me! Roasted, pan-friend in butter or lard, or eaten raw, it’s versatile and delicious.

Frakin’ Tasty Bison Burgers with Tomato, Avocado and Fennel Salsa

Make the salsa first, so it can have some marinating time in the fridge, while you prep and cook your burgers. The longer the salsa hangs out in the fridge, the tastier it will be.

Da Burgers

1.5 lbs ground bison
1 large clove garlic, chopped up coarsely
1 spash or 2 or gluten-free soy sauce (it’s worth searching out: it’s bolder and richer tasting)
Sea salt and white pepper to taste
Grated ginger, about 30 passes on a microplane grater
1 egg

Combine all ingredients thoroughly and make into three large burger patties. Crank your BBQ up to about 400 degrees. Add ’em to the grill and flip after about 4 – 5 minutes. These should take only a few minutes longer. Do not overcook ’em!

Da Salsa

About 1.5 – 2 cups finely sliced fennel
8 – 10 cocktail tomatoes, washed and halved
Roughly 1/4 cup finely chopped white onion
Half peeled english cucumber, thickly sliced
1 small avocado, cubed
Juice of one lime
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine all of the above and toss, toss, toss to coat. Let this chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. The longer, the better.

I happened to have a butternut squash in the fridge, which I cut up and threw into the oven. Serve all of the above to someone you love…or a hungry Crossfitter. But overall, as always…ENJOY! HUG YOUR KIDS!

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Blackened, Rich and Beautiful Chicken Thighs!

Le sigh.

I’m so sorry kids. I’m really, really frakin’ sorry for not having posted in weeks. It’s not that I haven’t been cooking. Food’s going down at this Primal-ites house…I’ve just been busy. Know what else?

We bought a HOUSE! I mean, we already have a house. But paying condo fees isn’t fun, and while we love the house, we have longed to move back to our old stomping grounds while we rented: Port Credit in gorgeous South Mississauga.

The Universe did us a solid: it found us a gorgeous, charming and very cute semi-detached home just west of Port Credit, in super-sexy, ultra-pretigious Lorne Park. Oh em gee. Everything came together beautifully. It was all just so easy. Our agent even grew up on the same street as wifey. Too many odd quirks and ‘coincidences’ popped up. I love when that stuff happens.

Now, we will be listing our town home for sale very soon. We have a wee bit of cleaning here and there to do, but our house is fabulous, and we have no concerns about it selling, and selling fast.

As I type this, I have a large chunk of beef roasting in the oven. I am starving. I’m super psyched to eat it with some squash I think I’ll boil up, mash with butter and herbs.

Also, my ass and hamstrings are killing me from the Crossfit WOD I did yesterday. It was insane. Walking, sitting, getting *up* from a sitting position: yeah, it HURTS!

SO MUCH PAIN!

My back is loving all of it. It feels one billion times better than it ever has, in that I am in NO PAIN whatsoever. Car accident? What car accident?

Let’s talk about food. I could write about a lot of things I’ve done over the last few weeks. I’ll space it out instead.

A few weeks back, wifey was battling some infection that comes and goes every year and attacks her vocal chords. Being the health nerd and food nut that I am, I prepared her an anti-inflammatory, immune-system boosting concoction that Mark Sisson of MDA calls Turmeric Tea.

This is a potent, rich, flavourful tea combining powerful anti-inflammatory ingredients such as turmeric and black pepper. In fact, the addition of black pepper is what actually gives the turmeric it’s inflammation-kicking qualities.

Combined with warm, intense, flavours of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves, the turmeric blends into a smokey, lingering warmth on your tongue. The coconut milk is rich and smooth; it’s a perfect carrier for all ingredients , its silkiness cooling down the heat of the spices.

Edited March 27th, 2015. NOPE NOPE NOPE. I made said turmeric tea a few months back when I was down with a cold. And you know what? It’s fucking disgusting. Just…NOPE.

I had some boneless, skinless chicken thighs to cook. I wanted some deep, rich, flavourful blackened chicken. I knew what would achieve this for longer cooking times: lard!

I made a large batch of this spice mix; I continuously seasoned the chicken while it cooked. I don’t recommend cooking chicken thighs on high. They like long, low heat. These took about 25 minutes.

By now you know I eyeball everything in the kitchen. Take these as serious approximations, and feel free to experiment with amounts:

I used about 1.5 tablespoons of cinnamon as the main ingredient, with 1 teaspoon, maybe 2, each remaining ingredient. Maybe a little less for the nutmeg. Try for .5 teaspoon.

Cinnamon
Chipotle
Black Pepper
Garlic Powder
Marjoram
Turmeric
Paprika

mmm…spicy!

Combine all ingredients and generously sprinkle over chicken thighs coated with some olive oil. Heat a large frying pan on medium high heat, and add about 1 tablespoon of lard. You know me: I love my wild boar lard. It’s perfect for dark, flavourful chicken. Season chicken with sea salt prior to adding to pan.

When your pan is hot, add your chicken. Now, don’t crowd it. Meat that needs to sear and brown doesn’t like to be crowded. It’ll be all like:

“DUDE GIMME SOME ROOM MANG. I CAN’T FUNCTION IN THIS TIGHT SPACE OKAY?!”

Or something like that. Your meat will actually start to steam in it’s own juices. We don’t want that.

Let the chicken darken and sear for about 2 – 3 minutes on one side. Flip it. Turn your heat down, and cover. Check on this periodically, and flip every so often. Keep adding seasoning to both sides. Cook until chicken is no longer pink.

I enjoyed this with butternut squash. You can eat it with whatever you like. But please, enjoy it 😉

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