No, we didn’t go anywhere. It’s been kind of crazy in the lives of the Ostercamps lately. We went to Florida on vacation. School and work started again. We had family in town. And oh hey, we bought our first house!! All that to say, thanks for sticking with us as our posts have been few and far between over the past month. We are super excited about our first place. Remember those previous posts that made me tear up as I wrote about how much we love our village? We are fortunate enough to have bought a little corner of that village. Right now, it’s a mess over there as my brother-in-law, uncle, and husband are completely renovating the bathroom. I mean, sledgehammering, ripping out dry wall, putting in new flooring and more.
In the mean time, the school year has started and everyone around town is getting back in the swing of things. Each new school year, I find the opportunity to get ultra organized. Not just with file folders and color coded post-it tabs (which are essential), but also at home. It’s a good time to donate summer clothes that weren’t even touched this year, organize bookshelves, recycle old magazines, and buy new school supplies. Or in our case this year, buy a new house! Second to New Year’s, I also find it fitting to make a few resolutions for the school year, such as healthy eating.
While my sister was in town, she introduced me to these delicious banana shakes. Simple ingredients, simple prep, and I kid you not, it tastes like a gosh darn banana milkshake. A lot of bloggers have featured these on their sites, and there are various mix ins, but I like this recipe as foundation for anything fancy you care to add. For the best taste and consistency, make sure your bananas are ripe (no green, lots of brown spots), and frozen overnight.
They’re a healthy snack that your kids will look forward to after school…or, that I’ll look forward to after work. Happy new school year everyone!
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cook Time: 0 minutes
2 bananas, frozen
2 tablespoons almond butter
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup almond milk
Blend all ingredients together using a blender and serve cold. That’s it. Really! How easy is that?!
Makes: Two small 5-oz. shakes, or one large 10-oz. shake
Sometimes having the oven on in the summer is the last thing I want to do. It’s hot. It’s humid. It’s gross. Why bring more heat in the kitchen? For some reason, I think of slow cooker meals being a winter thing, but it’s a really good way to keep your kitchen cool through the hot summer days. This beef is literally one of the easiest meat entrée recipes I’ve ever done. You brown the beef, place it in the pot with the other ingredients, and come home after work to a delicious, juicy, tender meat with savory garlic flavor. Pair it with potatoes (sweet potatoes if you’re going Paleo!) and you’ve got yourself a one-pot-wonder!
You can also reduce the juices it cooks in to make an irresistible gravy.
Easy Slow Cooker Beef
Prep. Time: 15 min. Cook Time: 8 hours
Inspired By: Delicious Obsessions
2 lb. beef chuck roast (beef shoulder)
16 garlic cloves, smashed
1 yellow onion, sliced thin
1 cups beef broth
*1 beer (we used Blue Moon)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
4 bay leaves
Heat oil over medium high heat. Cover beef in salt and pepper on all sides. Sear the beef for about 1 minute on each side, or until brown. Place beef in the crock pot. Add all other ingredients to the crock pot and cook on low for 8 hours. When finished, discard bay leaves and place beef on a cutting board. Shred beef using a fork and knife.
Transfer the juice from the crock pot in another pot or dutch oven over high heat. Boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 30 minutes or until gravy thickens. Add the shredded beef to the gravy and simmer for another 10 minutes.
Hold the phone. The Newlywed Chefs are posting a Paleo recipe? As you can see from our recipe index, we’re not a Paleo couple. BUT I am trying it for a while. Wait, don’t go! Don’t go anywhere. Just because I’m doing Paleo doesn’t mean you have to. Or my husband for that matter; he certainly is not. My sister successfully did Whole30 and as per usual, has inspired me! I’d guess about half of our blog readers have or know someone who has a food allergy. So far, I’ve completed a week of Paleo eating (no grain, no legumes, no dairy, no sugar) and feel great.
I have also cut out coffee. (WHAT?!) I’ve replaced it with green tea, which still has some caffeine, just not as much as coffee. I feel more energized, not as sluggish, refreshed, and healthy after only a few days. I will keep up Paleo at least through July and then reevaluate.
Here is a great summer recipe, whether you are Paleo or PaleNO! It’s a fresh and flavorful summer side. It’s great piled atop light flaky white fish, or served with plantain chips as an afternoon snack.
Cutting mangos can be tricky. The middles are hard and you don’t want to eat that part, so I usually cut vertically on each side around the middle, then score the mango, and slice off the cubes.
The preparation for this dish couldn’t be easier! Just mix everything well in a bowl and serve at your next summer get-together.
Have you tried doing anything like the Paleo diet? What were your experiences?
Mango Salsa (Paleo)
Prep Time: 15 min. Cook Time: 0 min.
2 mangos, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 jalapeño, seeds removed and diced
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cucumber, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 pinch salt
1 pinch pepper
Place all ingredients in a large bowl, stir, and enjoy!