Going “Green” in 2017!

Every January I make a commitment to live a little greener. This year I am focusing on living greener under my own roof, specifically, avoiding toxic/artificial fragrances in the products I use in my home, on my body, skin, hair and even on my clothes. And I am going to share a really easy way to minimize toxic chemicals in your home and offer you a great discount on these dryer balls…as in you pay only $1.00. Yup $1.00 for three wool dryer balls for my readers! (This post sponsored by Mighty Nest) 

Going "Green" in 2017 ~ Wool dryer balls for $1.00!

It Is Easy Being Green with The Mighty Fix!

One of the reasons people avoid using eco friendly products is because it’s not always easy to know what is safe and what isn’t. Research takes time and not everyone has access to stores that carry eco friendly and chemical free body friendly products. Mighty Fix is a monthly service that makes going ‘green’ a whole lot easier because they do all the work for you! Each month their expert curators hand pick an amazing safe, eco friendly, home or wellness product to send right to your door. At only $10/mo you’ll save an average of 30% off retail, plus the shipping is FREE in the 48 contiguous states. I just got my first delivery from Mighty Fix, these wool dryer balls and I love them!  Get your own WOOL DRYER BALLS FOR $1.00 when you sign up for The Mighty Fix (the discount will show up automatically when you check out.)

Going "Green" in 2017 ~ Wool dryer balls for $1.00!

Why Use Wool Dryer Balls?

These wool dryer balls are just one example of the fantastic products The Mighty Fix will send to your door. They’re great. Here’s why:
1)  They soften clothes naturally, replacing dryer sheets so no chemicals are tossing in and around your clothes in the high heat. Great for babies and those with sensitive skin.
2) Better for the environment – no throwing away dryer sheets PLUS the dryer balls cut the drying time cycle considerably, saving energy.
3) COST. No need to buy unnecessary dryer sheets and they last for thousands of loads!
 Get your own WOOL DRYER BALLS FOR $1.00 when you sign up for Mighty Fix!
Wool dryer balls shorten drying time, soften fabric, and reduce static. They help bed sheets stay untangled and are made of 100% premium New Zealand Wool. Smart Sheep dryer balls are all-natural, with no synthetic fibers or chemicals used. They will not unravel and will last for years. Wool dryer balls are quieter and more gentle on clothing than plastic dryer balls. Using dryer balls saves your dryer from residues left from chemical fabric softeners. 
 

Add a Few Drops Of Essential Oils for Yummy Smelling Laundry!

On their own these wool dryer balls do all of the above, but add a couple drops of your favorite essential oil and your laundry comes out smelling fantastic with no artificial fragrances involved. 

Going "Green" in 2017 ~ Wool dryer balls for $1.00!

The Mighty Fix sure makes keeping my “green in 2017” New Year’s resolution a whole lot easier. I hope you will check them out and take advantage of this great deal on dryer balls while it lasts!

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Kale Avocado Toast~ My Favorite Restaurant Series: Part 7

I LOVE avocado toast. It’s a favorite for breakfast or lunch. So Imagine how happy I was when a beautiful organic cafe opened in my neck of the woods that makes a fabulous avocado toast with a unique touch all their own. And then to make my life even better The Daily Harvest agreed to share their recipe for Kale Avocado Toast with my readers. This is a good day. Photo credit lmariephoto.com
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Kale Avocado Toast

The Daily Harvest:

We don’t live in a small town, but it’s not huge. When a new restaurant does open, it’s usually a chain. When The Daily Harvest opened their doors it quickly became my favorite stop for a healthy lunch! It’s very rare we get a unique eatery here in the Santa Clarita Valley, much less an organic one that features a seasonal menu, fresh pressed juices, amazing breakfasts, soups, wraps and sandwiches, not to mention paleo, vegan and gluten free options. Just look at the color in these meals! The juices and pressed almond milk are the best I’ve tasted. You can check out The Daily Harvest menu here. 

Kale Avocado Toast

The Chef:

Chef Cynthia Lara has been in the culinary world for 11 years. A homegrown chef she graduated from the College of The Canyons Culinary Program right here in Valencia, then became the executive chef for a Beverly Hills Catering Company. After four years she transitioned to to the restaurant world becoming the executive chef at Newhall Refinery. You can now find her creating the colorful, healthy meals served at The Daily Harvest. 

dh-collage

Kale Avocado Toast

The Owner:

The owner of The Daily Harvest, Nathalie Rondou has worked hard to create a bright and beautiful ambiance that is just as pretty as the food…and as a side note, the music is always on point! 

Kale Avocado Toast

Kale Avocado Toast

The Daily Harvest Kale Avocado Toast!

This hearty artisan bread is toasted, then topped with avocado mash,  kale sautéed in garlic, and finished with bright pink pickled cabbage. Pickled cabbage is very easy to make and adds flavor and color to salads and sandwiches. Prettiest avocado toast I have ever seen!

Kale Avocado Toast

The Recipe: Kale Avocado Toast

5.0 from 2 reviews
Kale Avocado Toast~ My Favorite Restaurant Series: Part 7
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Be sure to make pickled cabbage the day before. It keeps well in the fridge for a couple of weeks. Use it in salads, sandwiches...just about anything!
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Pickled Cabbage Slaw: Make ahead
  • ¼ red cabbage (super thinly sliced, I use a mandolin)
  • ¼ green cabbage, again, super thinly sliced
  • ¼ of a red onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ red winde vinegar
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • a generous pinch sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • The Toast:
  • 4 pieces of your favorite artisan bread
  • 2 cups kale, ribs removed and chopped
  • ½ a clove of garlic, minced finely
  • 2 large ripe avocados, peeled and mashed
  • 1-2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • pinch sea salt
  • pepper
Instructions
  1. The Pickled Cabbage:
  2. Make ahead by tossing everything together and then allowing to sit in the fridge at least overnight. The longer it sits the better it tastes!
  3. Wash and dry kale. Remove center ribs from stalks. Discard ribs, chop leaves. Prep garlic.
  4. Set a pan on medium heat. Add a little butter or olive oil and saute kale and garlic for 2-3 minutes. While kale cooks, prepare avocado and pop bread in the toaster.
  5. With a fork, mash avocado, lemon juice and sea salt until smooth.
  6. Spread toast with avocado mash, top with kale and pickled cabbage! Serve.

 

I hope you enjoy this healthy recipe as much as I do! You can follow The Daily Harvest on Facebook and Instagram.  To see more of my favorite restaurant series please click:

Kale Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette from 370 Common
The Secrets to Making the Best Burger Ever from The Rustic Burger
Pasta with Pea Sauce from The Foundry Grill
Citrus Stuffed Roasted Chicken from The Communal
Chopped Chinese Chicken Salad from Katsuya by Starck
Artichoke Heart Crostini from Settobello Pizzeria Napoletana
Divers Scallops from Chef Brown at Powder, Waldorf Astoria

screen-shot-2017-01-05-at-10-34-01-pmMAY I PLEASE ASK A FAVOR?

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

My Facebook Whole 30 group is rocking this January challenge. But when you get to eat amazing food like this Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes, it hardly seems like a challenge at all! 
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

The Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa:

While the pork and sweet potatoes are lightly seasoned, the majority of the flavor in this meal is provided by the roasted red bell pepper salsa. This salsa is a combination of so many good things: Roasted red bell pepper, tomato, avocado, red onion, serrano chili, cilantro and lime juice!

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

So much fresh goodness in one bowl and look at that color! Place some salsa on each bite of pork for a burst of flavor.

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

How To Roast a Red Bell Pepper 

Of course, you can buy roasted red bell peppers in a jar, but unfortunately you have to use all of them within a few days or they go bad. So to avoid waste I take the extra few minutes to roast my own. Just place a red bell pepper on a burner, directly over flame. As skin becomes black and charred, slowly rotate pepper using tongs. When all sides are charred, place in a bowl and cover with a saucer. Allow pepper to steam in it’s own heat for 10 minutes. Then peel off the charred skin, under running water if necessary, then dice. To learn how to work with a serrano chili, click here!

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

The Pork:

I am going to give you two options for the pork. I had my butcher cut me two 1″ thick pork “blade” steaks. Blade steaks come from the shoulder cut (also called the pork butt).  Pork shoulder is really well marbled so it has a lot of flavor. But you can also use a pork tenderloin, the tenderloin is the leanest cut of pork but is still very tender. Both cuts work very well with this recipe.

I season the pork with sea salt, pepper, cumin and garlic, sear in a pan, then transfer to the oven to finish right alongside the potatoes. Of course I pour the drippings over the meat before serving…

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

The Sweet Potatoes:

No peeling necessary! Just cut the potatoes in half lengthwise and then slice into 1/4″ half moons, toss in olive oil, sea salt and pepper, then roast. The sweet potatoes really round out this Whole 30 meal.

Bring it All Together:

Check out the variety of color in this meal. Color denotes nutrients, so we are getting a lot of good stuff here. Protein, vitamin A, lots of antioxidants, healthy fats and the cleansing properties of cilantro and inflammation fighting properties chili peppers!

Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

The Recipe: Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes

Tips and what you will need: a good knife and a large cast iron skillet are a must. To learn how to work with a serrano chili, click here! This meal is paleo, whole 30, dairy free, gluten free, grain free.

5.0 from 3 reviews
Pork with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Salsa and Sweet Potatoes
 
Prep time
Total time
 
A complete whole 30/paleo meal. If you follow the directions below, you can make this whole meal in about 40 minutes.
Author:
Recipe type: Complete meal
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • The Potatoes:
  • 2 small sweet potatoes
  • Sea salt
  • Pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil (for veggies and pans)
  • Red Bell Pepper Salsa:
  • 1 large roasted red pepper, diced (see instructions posted above)
  • 1 large ripe avocado, diced
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • ¼ of a red onion, finely diced
  • Serrano chili, finely minced, use ½ teaspoon for mild, ¾ teaspoon for medium, 1 teaspoon or more for hot
  • 2 teaspoons cilantro, chopped
  • juice of half a lime
  • sea salt, to taste
  • The Pork:
  • 2- 1" thick pork blade steaks (cut from the shoulder) or ¾-1 lb pork tenderloin
  • sea salt
  • pepper
  • dried cumin
  • garlic powder
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and place one rack in the upper third of oven and a second rack in the lower third. Place parchment paper on a rimmed cookie sheet and set aside
  2. To roast red pepper: wash and dry red pepper.
  3. Turn cook top burner on med heat and place red pepper right on the burner
  4. Allow pepper to sit on burner until skin turns black, use tongs to rotate the pepper
  5. Keep cooking the pepper till all sides are blackened, turning as each side is charred
  6. Remove pepper, place in bowl and cover with lid or plastic wrap
  7. Let sit for ten minutes while you prepare your other ingredients
  8. Sweet potatoes:
  9. cut sweet potatoes in half lengthwise, then cut ¼ " half moons
  10. place potatoes on cookie sheet covered with parchment paper
  11. drizzle with olive oil and toss (use just enough oil that all the potatoes are glistening)
  12. sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, to taste
  13. spread potatoes out in a single layer
  14. place in oven for 30 minutes, turning halfway through cooking time
  15. Make The Salsa:
  16. Dice tomato, avocado and onion.
  17. Mince Serrano chili, be sure to wash your hands well after and avoid rubbing your eyes for several hours (see instructions linked above for how to handle hot chili peppers).
  18. Chop cilantro. Place all prepared ingredients except chili in a bowl, stir and set aside.
  19. Remove red pepper from bowl and peel the blackened skin off pepper. This can be a little messy. Once blackened skin is removed, dice pepper and add to bowl with other vegetables, stir. Add Serrano chili. Sprinkle with sea salt and squeeze with lime, stir.
  20. The Pork:
  21. Sprinkle pork with seasonings. Place an oven safe pan (I like cast iron for this) on med/high heat. Add enough olive oil to pan that the bottom is lightly coated
  22. When oil is hot add pork, searing until brown on all sides (usually 3-4 minutes a side) If you are using tenderloin instead of blade steaks you'll turn ¼ turns so all sides are browned.
  23. Once browned place pan on the lower rack of the oven (below potatoes).
  24. If you used 1" steaks, cook for about 12 minutes, if you used a tenderloin, cook for 15-16 more minutes or until tenderloin has a SLIGHTLY pink center. Potatoes should be done right around the time the pork is done.
  25. Remove from oven, allow pork to rest for five minutes
  26. Slice pork, drizzle with drippings from pan, serve with potatoes and salsa.

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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.

 

Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes

Hello and happy new year! To start the new year off right Sun Basket and I are teaming up once again to bring you a delicious Paleo/Whole 30 compliant meal: Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes. 
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes

Sun Basket will be kicking off 2017 with their new “Healthy New Year” Campaign:

The new year is a time to refocus on goals and resolutions, whether they be cooking more, following a healthier diet, or spending more time with friends and family! Sun Basket has all of your resolutions in one delicious delivery.
Get 3 Meals Free from Sun Basket! Fresh organic ingredients and easy recipes delivered, with Paleo, Gluten-free and Vegetarian options.

$30 off Sun Basket

And Sun Basket meals are so easy to prep and cook. Just pull a Sun Basket bag out of your fridge, do a little dicing and slicing, a little sautéing or baking and voila! You have an incredible, delicious, healthy meal in about 30 minutes.

Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes

The Meal:

Argentina is famous for its beef, so it makes sense that they have a great steak sauce. This Chimichurri is a garlicky blend of parsley, oregano and cilantro seasoned with lime juice instead of the more traditional vinegar. Its tangy flavor is absolute magic with these grilled steaks. The sweet potatoes are tossed in olive oil and harissa powder, then roasted in the oven while you prepare the chimichurri and cook the steaks and chard in the same pan. So easy! 

Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes

 

The Recipe: Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes

Tips and what you will need: In my humble opinion the best way to get steak exactly how you want it is by searing it on the cooktop in a grill pan. I used a  Anolon Tri-Ply Clad 12” Deep Ground Grill Pan. This meal is grain free, dairy free, gluten free and Paleo/Whole 30 compliant.

5.0 from 4 reviews
Steaks with Chimichurri and Roasted Harissa Sweet Potatoes
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Complete Meal
Cuisine: Argentine
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • Ingredients
  • ¾ pound sweet potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 2 sprigs fresh oregano, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1½ teaspoons fresh garlic, peeled and minced
  • ½ pound chard
  • 1 teaspoon harissa powder (optional and you can adjust to taste)
  • 1 lime
  • Two 6-ounce top sirloin steaks (or to be fancy, filet mignon)
Instructions
  1. Prep the vegetables:
  2. Heat the oven to 400ºF.
  3. Trim the ends from sweet potatoes; cut the potatoes in half lengthwise, then crosswise into ¼-inch-thick half-moons.
  4. Strip the parsley and oregano leaves from the stems; finely chop the leaves.
  5. Finely chop the cilantro.
  6. Finely chop enough garlic to measure 1½ teaspoons.
  7. Strip the chard leaves from the stems; coarsely chop the leaves and stems, keeping them separate.
  8. Roast the sweet potatoes:
  9. On a sheet pan, season the sweet potatoes with salt, pepper, and as much harissa powder as you like. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and toss to coat. Roast in the oven until tender, 25-30 minutes. If you are like me and like the edges browned, leave them in a little longer.
  10. While the sweet potatoes roast, make the chimichurri:
  11. Working over a small bowl:
  12. Zest and juice the lime.
  13. To the bowl with the lime, stir in the parsley, oregano, cilantro, half the garlic, and 1 to 2 tablespoons oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  14. Cook the steak:
  15. Pat the steaks dry with a paper towel; season generously with salt and pepper.
  16. In a pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil until hot but not smoking. Add the steaks and cook, turning frequently, until well-browned, 6 to 8 minutes for medium-rare, depending on thickness. Transfer to a plate to rest for at least 5 minutes before serving. Do not clean out the pan.
  17. Cook the chard:
  18. In the same pan used to cook the steaks, add 1 to 2 teaspoons olive oil, if needed. Add the chard stems, season with salt, and cook until starting to soften, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the remaining garlic and the chard leaves and cook until just wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  19. Serve:
  20. Transfer the steaks, sweet potatoes, and chard to individual plates. Garnish the steaks with the chimichurri and serve.

 

Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese

Colder weather means comfort food. And I can’t think of a meal more comforting than good Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese! 
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales which allows me to keep my site up and running. Thanks for your support!)

Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese!

Look At That Crispy Top and Those Browned Edges!

So let’s just agree straight out of the gate that those boxed substitutes made with orange powder just can’t come close to the real thing! This Mac and Cheese is made with whole milk and sharp cheddar cheese, then baked in the oven to crispy perfection. You just can’t get that from a box.

Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese!

Swoon. Sigh. Drool.

The great thing about a skillet mac and cheese is that the bottom and edges get crispy too, not just the top! But you can also bake this in a baking dish if you don’t have a skillet.

Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese!

The Recipe: Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese

Tips and what you will need: a large skillet and a good whisk is just about all you need! 

5.0 from 2 reviews
Old Fashioned Skillet Macaroni and Cheese
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This mac and cheese can be made in a skillet or a 9x13 baking dish.
Author:
Recipe type: Main course
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 16 oz macaroni or whatever curly pasta you choose, cooked to package instructions
  • ½ cup sliced green onions, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 5 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and place rack in center position
  2. Start water to boil and cook pasta to package instructions
  3. While water heats, grate cheddar and slice onions
  4. Place milk in a small pot on medium heat to warm
  5. In skillet melt butter on med/high. If not using a skillet melt in a medium sized pot
  6. When butter is melted add a ¼ cup green onions and sauté for 2 minutes
  7. Add flour and whisk until smooth about one minute. This is a roux. A roux thickens your cheese sauce
  8. Slowly pour warm milk into roux with one hand while whisking with the other
  9. Add 4 cups cheese one handful at a time whisking between additions (reserving one cup of cheese for later)
  10. Whisk until all cheese is melted and sauce is smooth
  11. Season with salt and pepper
  12. When pasta is ready (do not overcook!) add to skillet with cheese sauce and stir until well incorporated. (If baking in a baking dish, pour pasta into baking dish and then pour cheese sauce over)
  13. Top with remaining cheese and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is crispy
  14. Garnish with remaining green onions, serve

 

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We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! 

STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy.