Whole Foods, Friends, Bacon:
What could be better?
A few nights ago, thanks to the fantastic idea of one of my ambassadors, Trevor, I ended up having a whole foods dinner with nine of my fellow health nuts. Even though I was really nervous cooking two new dishes that I’ve never tried before, I personally had a blast! My favorite part was when I sat down the HUGE bowl of bacon guacamole on the counter and it almost immediately disappeared! You see, when you hang out with people who spend 1-2 hours a day in a gym, eat clean, probably low-calorie, and always watch/count/add/subtract what they’re putting in their mouths, and then they are told “this is good for you, eat up!” it’s the most self-satisfying gift I could have ever given them. So that’s what I’m here to offer you–the same gifts!
- 6 large avocados, halved lengthwise, pits removed
- 1 (28oz) can diced tomatoes, excess liquid removed
- 1 package nitrite/nitrate free uncured bacon, cooked and diced (Tell your guests that there’s bacon in this recipe. One of my friends doesn’t eat bacon and she didn’t know it was in there. Until after she ate a lot of it. Sorry Linds.)
- 1/3 c jalapenos, finely chopped (I chopped up ones that were already sliced in a jar. Saves time.)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced (I actually used about 2 heaping tsp already-minced organic garlic. Easy.)
- 1/2 yellow onion, diced (If you have friends over who want to help, let them do this part. Thanks Reagan.)
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (I actually forgot to add this. No one noticed and they said it had a kick from the jalapenos anyway.)
- big handful of cilantro, diced
- juice of 4 limes
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook your bacon and start cutting avocados in half, remove pits, and scoop into a bowl.
- Let bacon cool and crumble it into bowl with avocados.
- Dice up your jalapenos, yellow, and garlic cloves and throw into the bowl.
- Add tomatoes.
- Use a fork to mash up your guacamole, then add your lime juice, cilantro, and salt and pepper. Mix well. (Thanks Trevor!)
- Serve with sweet potato chips or gluten free rice chips. (I served with both and they were GONE before I turned around! The whole thing was a HIT!)
As for the entree, I decided to cook up another Paleo-friendly recipe that I found on yet another awesome website: PaleoDietLifestyle. Definitely check out the site–they have tons of recipes and lots of Paleo eBooks! This Chicken Asparagus Carbonara receipe is so awesome that I ended up making it again today for Mother’s Day. Between mom, me, and Erik, we ate six plates full and still had half of it left over. I like to make more than what’s needed because then you get to package up the leftovers for lunches for the week. My version of the recipe below will serve at least 6-8 people. The original serves 4.
Chicken Asparagus Carbonara
- 2 large spaghetti squash
- 4 chicken breasts cut into small cubes (I used two packages of chicken tenders)
- 2 cups of asparagus cut into 1-inch pieces (I used about two fresh bunches when I cooked for 10+, one bunch when cooking for 6)
- 1 pkg bacon, cooked and crumbled (always try and get the uncured, nitrite/nitrate free bacon!)
- 2 medium onions, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (I use a heaping couple of tsp of jarred, minced garlic)
- 3 tbsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil (I skip this step because I cook the chicken in some of the leftover bacon grease. OMG.)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 375 F.
- Cut the spaghetti squash in two and, using a spoon, remove the seeds and stringy bits until the middle part is clean. Place in the microwave (one full spaghetti squash will cook in 8 minutes) and cook for 8 minutes on high. Remove carefully when done and let it sit until cool enough to handle. Repeat with the other spaghetti squash.
- While the squash is cooking, cook up the bacon on medium/med high heat. When the bacon is finished, let it drain on a plate with paper towels. Reserve 1/4 of the bacon grease for cooking the chicken.
- Cook the chicken cubes for 5 to 8 minutes, until just cooked through.
- Steam the asparagus for 5 to 10 minutes depending how crunchy you like them. If you don’t have a steamer, cook them in salted boiling water for 5 to 8 minutes and set aside.
- Once the squash is ready, let it cool a few minutes just so it’s cool enough to handle and then use a fork to scrape out the flesh and set it aside.
- Add the onions and garlic to the chicken and sauté until the onions soften, about 4 minutes.
- Stir in the spaghetti squash flesh, the cooked bacon, and the asparagus; 2 tbsp. of the chopped parsley, and (optional) a dash of olive oil. Season to taste with sea salt and ground pepper. Combine everything well together until it’s all warmed up.
- (OPTIONAL): I put everything into a baking dish, a warmed it in the oven for ten minutes before serving.
- Garnish with the remaining parsley to serve.
It’s always much more fun to cook up dishes like these when you can share them with good people! I had a blast with my Strong Figure friends, fellow athletes, Paleo newbies, Crossfitting champs, you name it–they represent. I love them and can’t wait to do it again next month!
I loved both of these dishes so much that I made them for my Mom on Mother’s Day. Happy Mother’s Day Mom!
Any ideas for what our next recipe should be??