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Cauliflower Rice

Chicken Stir Fry And Cauliflower Rice

Every January, Andy and I look at each other and say “this year, we’re going to get fit.” And each year, we do. For a little bit. As we’ve gotten older, it’s certainly become a more difficult feat. We’ve tried just about everything between the two of us: Weight Watchers, Whole 30 and Paleo, vegetarian, no carb, no sugar, more exercise, no eating out. Any number of combinations. The one thing that’s stuck with me though, has been that Whole 30 or Paleo has helped curb my carb issue.

You see, I have a bread problem. I’m the person that buys that warm Italian loaf at the grocery store and has eaten it all before we’ve made it home. True story.

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Food, Savory

Shichimi Togarashi Pork Loin Recipe

A while back I tried out Raw Spice Bar, a spice subscription “box” that’s only $6 and you receive three different spice blends. When I subscribed, I received three different blends for Japanese food, accompanied with three recipes, which being me, never really looked at until now.

I can’t imagine I’m the only one. So for all of you who received the Japanese package, this one’s for you.

My packets have been tucked away up on a shelf for about a month, not because I didn’t want to use them, but more that I just didn’t think anything of them when I have a full spice rack. But Andy came home with another pork loin (on sale, yes!) and I remembered that one of the spice blends had said something about being used for meats. So I dragged over the chair, perched myself up to reach the spices, pulled them down, and went to work figuring out which one it was.

It was the Shichimi Togarashi blend, meaning “seven flavor chile pepper,” or so they tell me, because I don’t speak Japanese. But this blend of black peppercorns, ground red chiles, dried orange peel, flaked nori, black sesame seeds, white poppy seeds, ginger, and garlic was bomb on the pork. It wasn’t sweet, but smokey and wasn’t too spicy hot.

Which makes me think I should continue to get the monthly Raw Spice Bar blends. Super easy, and all I had to do was open the package. I mean, honestly, it’s not like I’d be able to easily recreate the blend without revamping my entire spice rack. Although I did find a really reasonably priced blend on Amazon for under $3, which for all of you who don’t have the package should get.

Shichimi Togarashi Pork Loin Recipe

2-lb pork loin
Shichimi Togarashi Raw Spice Rack blend
Olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).

Place pork loin on a cookie sheet that has been lined with aluminum foil.

In a small bowl, combine about 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the spice packet, or about 2 tablespoons of a Shichimi Togarashi blend. (Here’s a link to a blend I found on Amazon under $3 and FREE shipping!)

Rub spice mixture all over the pork loin, making sure to cover the ends. Place cookie sheet into the oven and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Pork loin should be golden brown.

Remove from oven and let rest for 15 minutes. Slice and serve.


Shichimi Togarashi Spice Blend

Food, Savory

Herb Crusted Pork Loin

Lately, I have no time. It feels like Andy and I are non-stop running. We’re either doing photo shoots, running photo booths, heading to Crossfit, doing errands, or trying to get a quick load of laundry in. Even on my days off, I’m working. I’m not complaining as much as finally realizing that I need a few short cuts, especially in the kitchen.

Which is where this recipe came in. Andy had picked up a pork loin from the grocery store because it was cheap at only $1.99 a pound. I have never cooked a pork loin, so I was super confused and at first a little scared I was going to find myself in the kitchen for two hours prepping it. But a quick Pinterest search later and I realized it’s probably the best kept secret in the grocery store (as long as you eat pork).

All I needed was herbs, some olive oil, and tin foil. So I raided my spice rack and came up with this herb mix. It’s Andy and Ezra approved. Oh yeah, and Paleo.

Herb Crusted Pork Loin

1 1/2 pound pork loin
1/2 tablespoon dried thyme
1/2 tablespoon dried parsley
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon ground sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon oregano
2 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 425 F. Combine spices in a small food processor to blend until combined, or use a kitchen knife to chop by hand so rosemary is broken into small pieces with other herbs. Place in a bowl.

Add olive oil to the herb mixture and mix to combine until it is a paste-like consistency. Place the pork loin on a baking sheet covered with foil. Rub the oil and herb mix over the entire surface of the pork. Place in oven and roast for 35-45 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. (You can use a meat thermometer to verify, but most likely if the outside is brown and inside is white, it should be done.  Allow the pork loin to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Food, Savory

Whole 30 Hamburger Buns

I don’t have patience for making grain-free, Paleo hamburger buns that require special flour. Too much time for something I’m afraid won’t taste good. Which is exactly how I ended up making this version of Whole 30 Hamburger Buns for Andy when he started the Whole 30 again.

The only way I could see it working was to make it with potatoes. So I used my Polish heritage to work up a potato pancake-inspired hamburger bun. I’m proud to say that every time I’ve made it since, Andy has raved about this recipe. The best thing is it’s super easy, only four ingredients, and holds well as a bun.

Whole 30 Hamburger Buns

Grain-free, easy to make replacements for bread buns.

Serves 2
2 large yellow potatoes,
1/4 small sweet onion, minced,
Pepper, to taste,
Olive Oil,

Cook potatoes in a microwave until soft, about 6-8 minutes. Split open potatoes and place inside a bowl. Throw away the skins. Add onions, salt, and pepper to bowl. Stir to combine. Using your hands, form four palm-sized patties.In a heated skillet with olive oil, place potato patties in oil. Cook for four minutes each side, or until golden brown and stable. Set aside to cool. Use as hamburger buns or as a base for protein.