House For Six

paleo/perfect health diet

New Mexican Chile Verde (Without the Hatch Chiles)

Deme Crinion2 Comments

You know what we're


going to discuss today?  The Superbowl.  It's all been said.  Let's just put it behind us, mourn the fail of a competitive game, and move onto the food.  Sound good? OK.

James loves to cook.  It's theraputic for him.  However, he loves to find these labor intensive recipes that require chopping, blending, and 17 other steps making for hours spent in the kitchen.  And a lot of dishes.  I, on the other hand, am all about quick and easy.  It's my lazy gene. 

So, when he suggested we go with New Mexican food for the Superbowl to fill our unquenched craving of the past few months, I was all for it.  But of course, he wanted to make chile verde.  From scratch. 

Here's the thing about chile verde.  It's a staple of New Mexican food, like gravy is to a Thanksgiving meal.  It's base however is hatch green chile, which aren't exactly a plenty here in Ohio.  Hhhmm.  A little internet surfing landed on this recipe for making a very close to authentic chile verde using poblano peppers in place of the hatch chiles. 

It fell into James' token 4 hour recipe, but the majority of that was for the pork to slow cook in that amazing chile sauce.  Well, twist my arm...

(find the original recipe



And you was. SO. GOOD.  We had to make a couple of tweaks since we didn't have access to all the ingredients....

-We subbed the cubanelle peppers with anaheim peppers since they were the "sweet" in this verde party. 

-We had to use the broiler method to char the peppers since the grill was not an option. 

-We also didn't run the peppers under water when we peeled them to preserve those tasty oils. 

-A commenter's tip to salt after the chicken stock is added to account for the salt in the broth was a gem.

It was about an hour of some involved prep, followed by a couple hours slow cooking in the oven.  At which point our house smelled amazing and we knew it was going to be good. 

The pork was so tender and the chile so flavorful.  James guzzled his straight in a bowl topped with a few chopped jalapenos for extra heat and I took mine on top of some steamed rice (Perfect Health Diet Friendly, yo!).  You can serve it with chips, tortillas, or even have it with your morning eggs.  It also happens to be a paleo friendly meal for our paleo/perfect health diet pals out there.  Comfort food at it's tasty and healthy best!

Just a note: the heat index was not bad, but a little too high for the kids, perfect for me, and too low for my hotter-till-snot-runs-out-of-my-nose husband.  For a more family friendly version, you can remove the seeds and flesh part of the jalapenos.

What did you serve up for the game?  Did you watch it until the sad, bitter end?  Next year...

Thanks so much for reading! We would love to keep in touch!

Makin' It Paleo: Chocolate "PB" Banana Muffins

Deme Crinion2 Comments
Back in March we began a food experiment of sorts.  Tired of feeling lethargic, battling digestive issues, and relying on medicine to treat headaches and other pain, I did some research and decided to give the Perfect Health Diet a go.  It's very similar to Paleo, in that it's no grains, no legumes, no sugar, no vegetable oils.  You can however have some dairy.  And dark chocolate.  Important point there.

I'll write more about how this has affected me and our whole family in a later post, but today, it's all about the chocolate.  About the only thing I miss with this way of eating is a sweet treat every now and again.  But since dark chocolate and pure unsweetened cocoa is ok, we came up with these bits of tasty goodness that even the kids ask for.
Paleo chocolate "PB" banana muffins

But we didn't get here via a smooth, uneventful road.  No.  That would have been too easy.

I first tried a chocolate cookie recipe from Practical Paleo.  It called for shredded coconut (which I didn't have on hand) and said to increase the amount of pure maple syrup for a sweeter cookie.  Since this was for me myself and I the kids, I added an extra tablespoon of the syrup.  Which left the batter a runny mess.  So much so that I pulled the cookie puddles mid-bake, and poured them down the sink.

I decided to enter uncharted waters and try to come up with my own recipe.  I needed something to thicken up the batter and to give it sweetness without being runny.  A little almond flour and mashed banana would solve those issues.  Peanut butter is such a great friend to chocolate and bananas, but it's off limits for the diet and my very allergic son.  Almond butter was a perfectly good substitute, so we whipped that all up with some cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.  And ended up with this:
Paleo chocolate "PB" banana muffins
Not at all runny or dry, and actually...delish!  But as Sully noted, "my cookie is a little bit floppy".  Indeed, son.  It did break apart pretty easily....which made for a delicious gooey mess but a straight up chocolate bomb in 2 year old hands. Clean up was real fun.

Eggs are supposed to bind right?  So, the next time I added an egg to the batter.  This made the consistency more like cake batter and I knew we would have the same problem as we did with the first batch.  So, I let go of my perfect cookie aspirations and spooned that batter into a lined muffin tin.

And wouldn't you know, they turned out pretty darn tasty.

Paleo chocolate "PB" banana muffins

We've made them several times since then, so I think it's safe to pass the recipe onto you.  If you want to try the cookie version, just omit the egg.

Chocolate "PB" Banana Muffins:

2 mashed bananas
1/2 c Almond butter
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c almond flour
1/2-1 c dark chocolate chips (to your liking)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl combine mashed bananas, almond butter, egg and vanilla until well mixed and relatively smooth.  (I use a whisk and you'll still have a couple small chunks of banana).  Add the cocoa and stir until combined.  Add baking soda, salt, and almond flour. Mix until well incorporated.  Fold in the chocolate chips.   Spoon batter into a lined muffin tin and bake for 18-25 min depending on your oven.  20 min is just right for ours.  Allow to cool in pan for 5 min before moving muffins to cooling rack.  Makes 12 muffins.

Happy guilt-free chocolate indulging!

7 Quick Takes Friday: Teeth, Magazines, Thrift Finds, and Food

Deme Crinion1 Comment
Joining Jen and the gang for another week of 7 Quick Takes.

7 quick takes sm1 7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 216)

1.  We're 10 days into our 30 days of better eating.  We're following the Perfect Health Diet and while we're still learning and figuring out meals, this week I have felt a huge improvement in my overall energy level.  The first week I felt like crap. But now that the sugar cravings have faded, I'm feeling so much better.

2.  This Lazy Sunday Casserole was by far our favorite meal of the week.  So hearty, so tasty, and just straight up farm-to-table goodness.  The only thing I added to the recipe was a bit of red wine with the balsamic vinegar.
Lazy Sunday Casserole

3.  Does anyone else's calendar feel like it's going to explode?  Must be end of the school year stuff, but I'm barely keeping my head above water here.  I actually blocked off next week for spring cleaning...things were popping up on the calendar so fast and the house is a wreck.  It's giving me an anxious twitch, so I blocked off time to clean.  And already two other things have wormed their way into my cleaning week.  Pretty sure that's the end of that.

4.  I went thrift shopping with my bloggy friend Sharon and stumbled upon these beauties.  

Not sure exactly what they are....I think they were giant sconces, but they're glass and fun and I'm thinking they would make some pretty fine lamp bases.  But I have no idea how to do it.  I will be Googling later...

5.   The other day I had to take a second look at our "5" pillow.  Looks like a certain 3 year old was getting in a little number tracing practice.

I'm just bursting with Mommy pride over here.  Really. I am. 

6.  A very excited little girl finally lost her first tooth!  She was bouncing off the walls and couldn't wait to share the news with her teachers and friends at school the next day.  
It took a bit of work to get it out, but she was one brave cookie and had a very patient Daddy working the noose he engineered out of dental floss.  I was skeptical but just look at that gap :)

We finished an easy-sew Tooth Fairy Pillow just in time!
Tooth Fairy Pillow by Fresh Coat Of Paint

7.   So this week the June issue of This Old House magazine hits news stands and guess whose breakfast nook is on p. 38....

Crazytown!!!!!   Seriously, this is just beyond anything I ever imagined would come of our Fresh Coat Of Paint blog.  It all came about from the Young House Love feature back in January.  I'm so grateful and humbled and walking around with a goofy perma-grin on my face. 

And Jack just busted into the office announcing the end of his nap with, "It's Jackie!!!"  So that's all she wrote.  Have a great weekend and a wonderful Mother's Day to all you mama's!

Perfect Health Diet Weekly Menu - Take One

Deme Crinion4 Comments
Ok, so the first week of our PHD was a little....strained.  We still have "off-limits" foods in the house from our latest Costco run that we didn't want to just dump.  We're still using it for the kids' meals.  My grand scheme was to do this as a family, but I think we'll have to transition the kids over a little more slowly.  It's mind games really.  I gave them a paleo "cookie" tonight that consisted mostly of almond flour and mashed banana. They saw the dark chocolate chips in them and were all about it.  Even though the texture was really odd.  And I snuck some flax seeds undetected into their smoothies this morning...and they drank them.  So, we'll get there!

The other issue that caused some tension was my total  lack of meal planning....remember when I wrote that post all about how we were going to set ourselves up for success?   The one that centered on planning?  Yeah.  I didn't do that.  It was a nice week, so I figured we would grill for dinner and made sure there were plenty of veggies in the fridge to go along with whatever we seared.  Nice in theory but still not a very good plan.  I didn't really cook and James and I just sort of came up with whatever was easy.  We felt like we were dieting and missed that comfort and satisfaction of eating a home-cooked meal.

So this weekend, I did.  I planned a Perfect Health Diet friendly dinner menu for the week that will hopefully give us enough leftovers for lunches too.  Here's the line-up:

Monday: Farm-To-Table Stew

I think Kayotic Kitchen actually calls it "Lazy Sunday Casserole" and it is delicious.  It completely hit the spot.  Hearty, wholesome and full of flavor.  I followed the recipe almost to the letter, just adding a splash of red wine along with the balsamic vinegar.
Lazy Sunday Casserole

Tuesday: Better Than Take-out Chicken Fried Rice

This is a recipe I pinned ages ago and have yet to actually attempt. Rachel recommends the Slow Cooker Teriyaki Chicken in it, which I think I'll try.  The chicken recipe does call for sugar, so I'll have to either come up with a substitute or just omit it altogether.  I'll let you know how it goes!
 better-than-takeout chicken fried rice. homemade! no yucky msg. and its easy

Wednesday: Hamburger Vegetable Soup

I'm anxious to try this Hamburger Vegetable Soup recipe from Money Saving Mom.  The picture totally sold me.

Thursday: Turkey Meatballs & Brussel Sprouts

I've seen a few turkey meatball recipes floating around Pinterest, but think I'll try this one.  I'm thinking maybe almond flour/meal or coconut flour as a binder?  It's the PHD test kitchen here folks....

And I think we'll whip up these sprouts to go with them.  Minus the brown sugar.

Friday: Orange Chicken, Broccoli, & Steamed Rice

This is a favorite of ours and I think it's originally from   It super easy and always tasty.  I'll have to tweak the recipe a bit and will share it with you if I can make it edible and still PHD friendly.

Here's to a better week!