Winter Layer Lasagne

IMG_1548

As I am sitting here contemplating what to write for this post I feel a sense of relief. I have not posted for a long time. Life is chaotic at the moment and I have not been dealing well with time management and balance of work and life. I used to write this blog purely out of enjoyment and love but over the last few months I have been distancing myself from Paleo Kitty. It just all seemed too hard. I thought of it as work not fun. I felt guilty for not posting more regularly and providing people like me with simple healthy meal ideas. I started telling myself that I was just another paleo blogger and no one will miss it. I felt it was a burden rather than a joy. I began to dread the blog!

But it has been this week where I have realised that I need to “let go” of a lot of things. I need to let go of things I can’t change. I need to let go of expectations of doing it all. Let go of all the “should’s and bullshit”. I don’t want to do it all, I want to do what I love. I love to eat and I love good food. I love to write and talk about stuff. I don’t need anyone to read the blog, I don’t need anyone to tell me if it’s good or bad. I need to do what brings me happiness. Stuff the laundry and the vacuuming (seriously though my floors are tiled but they look like shag pile carpet at the moment :/ ), screw the study and the bills (I’ll pay them later, I promise!) I want to post a recipe. So I am…

Here in Australia, it is our winter. Well… we had one week of winter and the rest of the time it is just basically like our spring. Still, I love to embrace Winter. I wear trackies and uggs, hoodies and beanies (these are a few of my favourite things) despite the fact it’s 25 degrees outside and I’m sweating underneath all of the clothes. Anyway winter also means it’s time for those beautiful hearty soups, stews and my favourite… lasagne!

I’ve tried ‘no pasta’ lasagne before using eggplant, sweet potato and also zucchini. Whilst they are all valid substitutes, they don’t always create that perfect lasagne with the layering and the béchamel sauce that Nonna used to make. If I did in fact have a Nonna… or was Italian at all…

So I tried and tested and combined three independent recipes and combined them to make a beautiful lasagne.

Meat Sauce Ingredients

  • 1kg of grassfed beef mince
  • 2tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 brown onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup of beef stock
  • 3 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 1 can pureed tomatoes or 1 – 1 1/2 cups pasata
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Bechamel Sauce Ingredients

  • 1/2 head of cauliflower cut into florets
  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup stock
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs

‘Pasta’ Ingredients

This is basically the Wrap recipe that I posted a few months ago. With this recipe you can leave the spinach in or take it out. I took it out just for a more traditional lasagne look.

Making Your Lasagne

  • Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees celsius
  • In a large fry pan melt the coconut oil and add the onion. Saute until soft then add the garlic. Cook until fragrant.
  • Then add the mince and cook until just brown.
  • Add the stock, oregano and tomato paste. Stir until combined and simmer for a few minutes. Then add the tomato puree/pasata.
  • Stir until all mixed in and turn the heat down to low and let it simmer while you make the wraps and bechamel sauce.
  • Put in a saucepan all of the ingredients (except the eggs) for the béchamel sauce. Bring to a boil and then simmer covered for 15-20 minutes.
  • Now make the wraps/”pasta” sheets
  • Set the wraps aside
  • With a stick blender or immersion blender blend the cauliflower mix and add one egg at a time. Blending thoroughly before adding the second egg.
  • Now in a rectangle baking dish, place a layer of the wraps, then smother with béchamel layer then add a layer of meat.
  • Continue this layering by adding another layer of wraps, béchamel sauce and meat. The top layer should be a layer of meat then a layer of béchamel sauce.
  • Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until the top layer is a golden brown colour.
  • Let it cool slightly before cutting in and serving.
  • Get your winter layer on!

Leftover lasagne is delicious and after refrigerating is easy to cut and serve!

 

Swimming up Stream – Salmon “Pasta” Two Ways

I saw a great saying the other day, it was “be a flamingo amongst a flock of pigeons”

I loved this for two reasons, firstly because I have a weird fascination with flamingo prints or art and secondly because I like the sentiment of the saying. To be yourself amongst a group of people all trying to be the same or conforming to an unrealistic societal expectation is a true measurement of self worth and respect. Standing tall and being proud of who you are is an amazing thing. I like to think, even though I am short and far from flamingo pink, that I have been standing tall amongst the flocks of pigeons.

It’s becoming much easier to be true to myself and to share my experiences with other people without the threat (created by myself subconsciously) of being judged. I only wish that more people and especially younger people could feel and live this way. It’s quite liberating, somewhat similar to that feeling of walking around your home completely naked and not giving a flip.

Too heavy? Sorry, onto more paleo things!

Another week of Whole30 down and I’m feeling super! Although competed in a CrossFit competition on Saturday and it was a bit trickier to keep up with 3 meals and found myself instead just having bits and pieces of my Whole30 meals over the course of the day. We did well though and had a blast as always at the comp, although I feel I should have won some sort of “above and beyond” award when I accidentally did my thrusters with an extra 5kg!

From flamingos to salmon. Lets get into these recipes shall we?

Ingredients

  • salmon fillets boned and skin removed (use one for each person)
  • 2 large  or 4 small to medium zucchinis
  • roasted unsalted cashews roughly chopped to sprinkle
  • salt and pepper to season

Salmon One Way 

IMG_9127.JPG

Ingredients

  • fresh lemon juice
  • dried dill leaves
  • extra virgin olive oil / cocount oil to drizzle
  • garlic granules to sprinkle
  • salt to season
  • capers (in SALT or WATER for Whole30 do not use ones in brine or vinegar as not Whole30)

What to Do

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celsius.

For each salmon fillet tear off a bit of aluminum foil and a smaller piece of baking paper. Put the baking paper on top of the aluminum foil and then place the fillet on top of the baking paper.

Drizzle the fillet with your chosen oil, drizzle some lemon juice over the top. Then sprinkle the fillet with dried dill leaves, garlic granules and capers. Season with sea salt.

IMG_9114.JPG

Fold the edges and ends of the aluminum foil up and roll over each other to create a little parcel. Do this for each fillet and then place the parcels on a baking tray.

IMG_9115.JPG

Put into the oven for 15 to 20 minutes depending on how well done you like you salmon.

Meanwhile make zucchini pasta using your julienne peeler or spiraliser. Place in a large bowl. Just before the salmon is done, heat up the pasta in a pan to give it a bit of warmth. DON’T over cook it as it will be too soggy.

You may also like to try sweet potato pasta or spaghetti squash as your “pasta”.

Once the salmon fillets are cooked, remove from the parcels  and break up the fillets into the pan with the “pasta” in it. Drizzle the juices from the salmon parcels and toss. Season to taste.

You could add some shredded chinese cabbage, green beans chopped or snow peas if you like.

Plate up and sprinkle with roasted cashews.

Salmon Two Way

IMG_9264-0.JPG

Ingredients

  • salmon fillets boned and skin removed (one for each person)
  • 2 large zucchinis or 4 small to medium
  • coconut oil
  • garlic granules
  • salt and pepper to season
  • Pesto from The Besto Pesto Chicken
  • roasted cashews to sprinkle on top

What to Do

Make your pesto and set aside.

Spiralise or julienne your zucchinis (sub sweet potato etc)

In a fry pan on a medium, heat the coconut oil for as many fillets as you have.

Sprinkle onto the salmon fillets some garlic granules and season with salt.

Place the salmon fillets in the fry pan and cook turning once.

Once the fillets are cooked, remove from the pan and briefly toss your “pasta” in the pan to heat it up.

I judge the cooking time by watching the salmon fillet change colour to about half way up and then I flip it. 

In that same pan with the pasta in it to save washing up (you can use a separate bowl if you like), break up the salmon fillets and toss with the pasta and the pesto.

I also steamed some broccoli and added that in as well.

Season with salt and pepper if needed. Sprinkle with roasted cashews and serve!

Too easy salmon squeezey!