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WILD BOAR RAGU

I have to start off by saying, don’t let wild boar scare you. It’s just pork but unlike any other. It’s much leaner and has a richer flavor which works perfect for this ragu. A free range animal grazing on a wide variety of food gets more muscle enhancing movement, which generates a deeper, more flavorful meat than an animal confined and raised only on grain; and there are no antibiotics or hormone supplements to worry about with wild animals.

Although, if you prefer to not use wild boar or cannot find it, feel free to use beef, or pork we’re all familiar with. You can also use other wild meats like venison and rabbit too which is commonly used in some parts of Italy. The key is to use a flavorful meat so I wouldn’t suggest ground turkey or chicken. Save those two for something else instead. I typically give it a good four hours to make this at least. Most of that time is letting it simmer down. I’ve used a slow cooker and it works great but at certain points you may need to leave the lid cracked open.

Before I let you go, in case you didn’t notice; this recipe calls for dried porcini mushrooms. Don’t forget you will need that mushroom broth, not just the mushrooms so set it aside. This brings out the earthy rich flavor of the dish entirely. You don’t have to use it but in my opinion it’s a must to pull everything together as one incredible dish. If you happen to tweak the recipe and something amazing came of it, please share!

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WILD BOAR RAGU
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Ingredients
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Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Add the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat with the onions, carrots, and garlic. Stir everything frequently for about 7 minutes until the onions are translucent and softened. Then, add in the chopped porcini mushrooms and tomato paste, stirring often for about 4 minutes.
  2. When the tomato paste turns a dark brick red color, add the meat, porcini broth, and broth. Bring everything to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low allowing it to simmer and reduce.
  3. Once most of the liquid has evaporated add the wine, stir. Let it reduce again.
  4. When the broth has mostly evaporated, add the milk, nutmeg, pepper, and stir well. Bring it back to a simmer, add salt to taste. Bring the heat down to low and cook it down until it’s the consistency you like.
  5. Serve over bucatini and a garnish of Romano cheese.

GINGER BEEF STIR FRY

You know as much as I love being in the kitchen cooking all sorts of things, there are those busy days that don’t include test cooking and all I want is something quick and easy to set my days at ease. I’m a big fan of making meals that don’t require a whole lot of time so I can make time for other things in life. Says the moderation queen LOL! Anyways, this dish should only take 20 minutes including prep work. Get your rice cooking first so that by the time you’re done with the meat, it’s ready to go.

Make it spicy with some red pepper flakes when cooking or add Sriracha in the end. Feel free to use chicken or shrimp instead if you prefer. These are such universal flavors that it will go with anything even if you’re vegan/vegetarian and want to use tofu or a bunch of different veggies. The options are endless so make it exactly how you want it!

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GINGER BEEF STIR FRY
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Ingredients
Servings
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Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Slice the meat very thin against the grain and place in a large glass bowl.
  2. In another bowl whisk together the soy sauce, sherry, dark brown sugar, arrowroot powder, and ginger. Pour half of the marinade over the meat and mix everything together really well.
  3. Drizzle a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over high heat and saute the snow peas and shredded carrot for two minutes.
  4. Remove the veggies onto a plate and add the marinated meat and half the green onions. Let it cook undisturbed for about two minutes then stir. Let it cook for a few more minutes until it's a minute from being cooked through.
  5. Add the snow peas and shredded carrot back into the skillet with the meat, pour the remaining marinade, stir and let cook for one last minute.
  6. Garnish with the rest of the green onions and serve over jasmine rice.
Recipe Notes

To make this a diabetic friendly meal, avoid the rice and replace with additional veggies of your choice. I love adding broccoli and water chestnuts.

BBQ RIB SUPER GREEN SALAD

This is not a chick salad. Although if you love salads, you’ll go crazy over this one. If you’re not a salad person, this one in particular may just convert you. Typically people throw a few things together like your standard tomatoes and croutons over iceberg lettuce with some store bought dressing and call it a salad. No. Just NO! You deserve better than that and so does your health. So leave it to me to create something where we can compromise a little splurge and some good health all in one. Besides, Spring time is right around the corner. Perfect for a recipe like this!

I must say really good smokey ‘n sweet BBQ pork ribs remind me of my childhood when my Dad would make them in the Summer time. Nowadays these aren’t really something I eat much of at all if ever but I recently had a craving for them and got a full rack. It only took half the rack to satisfy my itch. With another half rack left, like any other leftover meat I have hanging around in the fridge, I turn into a big chopped salad. Thus this BBQ Rib Super Green Salad. It’s literally sweet, salty, smokey, bitter, tart, savory and satisfies every taste bud on your tongue.


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BBQ RIBS SUPER GREEN SALAD
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Ingredients
Servings
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Instructions
  1. Toss everything together in a large bowl and serve.

SLOPPY JOES

It’s SO easy to be lazy! But that’s not the kind of easy you want to get used to. It’s time to get used to easy HOMEMADE meals. Use real ingredients, no preservatives and control what you put into your food. Sure, homemade food can be high in calories of sugar, carbs and poor fats. Even too much protein, not enough fiber. But we can make healthier options and use moderation to compromise. Sloppy Joe’s CAN be healthier without losing it’s unforgettable flavor. Without a doubt this is the best I’ve ever had. I spent a few times getting it right and it was well worth it!

Here I made a traditional Sloppy Joe using ground turkey instead of beef. I’ve made this a few different ways including with all ground beef and I’ll be straight up honest with you… there isn’t much of a difference. With the right spices you can really make a huge difference with the blandness that is ground turkey. I’ve made this using all 99% fat-free ground turkey breast and the consistency was a little tough in comparison but the flavor never changed. My favorite though is using the commonly found 6% fat ground turkey that you can find at any store. Basically, you can do whatever you want with it. Make it your own!


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SLOPPY JOES
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Ingredients
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Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat saute the onion and carrot with the olive until softened. Add the garlic and ground turkey, breaking it up with a wooden spoon and stirring until it's about half way cooked through.
  2. Toss in the salt, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and diced tomatoes. Stir everything together, add half of the beef stock, tomato paste, ketchup, and worchestershire sauce then stir again.
  3. Reduce the heat to low-medium letting it simmer for about 5-7 minutes or until everything thickens.
  4. Lastly, stir in the other half of the beef stock and brown sugar. Allow everything to simmer until it thickens again.
  5. Serve with your favorite buns.

EVERYTHING CHOPPED SALAD

Spring time confession here! So I’ve developed a little bit of an obsession with chopped salads. Slightly. They’re just so much tastier when everything chopped up small in unison! And it makes from eating otherwise boring veggies or eating the same stuff all the time the same way THAT MUCH BETTER! This salad has everything in it. Yet again. I kinda get caught up in doing that and can’t help it. It’s hard to let things go to waste. You can tell by the ingredient list there’s a metric crap ton of stuff. You can make it exactly so, omit some, add some, replace some, whatever your heart desires and I’m pretty damn sure it’s going to taste as good. I’ll tell you why…

A lot of the ingredients in this salad comes from the little salsa-succotash-esque that I put on top of my Chicken Lettuce Tacos. I had some leftover from having those delicious tacos the other night and didn’t want it to waste. Sooo I dumped it into a bowl of chopped lettuce among other added goodies. And VIOLA! There’s no guilt here. This is not one of those salads you get at some chain restaurant that will bust your belt at 2,000 calories. So don’t worry. It’s just a butt load of fiber goodness! FYI, I never use store bought salad dressing. With these salads you don’t need them! With lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper brings out the flavors and natural sugars in the fruit and veggies.

OH! And if you have leftovers, it should keep fairly decent for a couple of days.

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EVERYTHING CHOPPED SALAD
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servings
Ingredients
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Put all of the ingredients in a large bowl and fold everything until well mixed together.