Cabbage Leaf Tacos

I know that name sounds not only like a super interesting blog post, but also a really delicious way to wrap up your tacos…(where’s my sarcasm font?). But seriously, these things are amazing. Like something out of a Paleo Taco Truck. Speaking of which, why haven’t I come across a Paleo food truck at all? Get on board with it food truck people!

It’s hard to find a substitute for taco shells, but cabbage leaves really do the trick. I can’t exactly take credit for coming up with the idea, because a friend of mine on Facebook posted a pic on my page of tacos wrapped in purple and green cabbage leaves. Using lettuce to wrap things formerly wrapped in gluten and grain is pretty lame in my opinion. Who wants to wrap a taco in wilty lettuce? Gag. I want my taco shells crispy and crunchy. And cabbage is PERFECT.

These tacos are also a perfect way to use leftover roast, even if that roast didn’t come out so fantastic. Which is exactly what happened to me the other night. I never have any luck with roast in the crock pot. I don’t know what the deal is. They’re never juicy and tender and falling apart like my moms. So I had all this leftover meat and I sure as hell wasn’t going to throw it away. I also had an avocado and some cabbage that needed to be used. Thus, Cabbage Leaf Tacos for lunch today! There was enough meat left that there is also a beef stew currently simmering on my stove for dinner. One roast, 3 meals…I call that $20.00 well spent (even if the first meal didn’t knock my socks off, the tacos made it totally worth it!)

Cabbage Leaf Tacos

About 1 lb roast, cooked, diced into teeny tiny pieces

One large bell pepper, diced

half an onion, diced

2 1/2 tablespoons bacon grease (or whatever fat or oil you prefer)

6 cabbage leaves

Taco seasoning (I make my own)*

Guacamole or 1 avocado

1/2 bunch cilantro

Melt 2 tablespoons of bacon grease in a large frying pan. Add onions and bell pepper, sauteing over med-low heat until onions are translucent and bell pepper is crisp-tender. Add roast and taco seasoning, stirring every couple of minutes until heated through. Image

Remove taco mixture and set aside. Melt remaining 1/2 tablespoon bacon grease in frying pan. Remove 6 whole cabbage leaves from head of cabbage. Cut out the thick part that was attached at the center of the cabbage. This step isn’t imperative, I just don’t like that part of the cabbage. Place cabbage leaves in pan, keeping heat on med-low. Cook until edges touching pan start to brown, flip over, and cook until those edges brown a bit as well. Fill cabbage leaves with about 4 tablespoons of taco mixture each, topping with guacamole or avocado slices and cilantro. Fold excess cabbage over itself and enjoy!

Image

*Taco Seasoning

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon dried oregano

2 teaspoons red chile powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more if you really want to bring the heat! This amount was appropriate for my 3 year old to eat without complaining that it’s too “picee”)

Advertisements

Running 13.1

Ah, the Half Marathon. A challenging yet totally doable distance for most of us. A distance you can run just to complete the distance itself, but also a distance short enough that those non-elite runners (myself included) can set some nice time PR’s as well. The Half Marathon is my second favorite distance to run, succeeded only by the 25k. I really only like the 25k better because it’s usually on trails, and trails are far superior to roads in my running book. 

I was granted the opportunity to actually train a group of people to run a Half this semester. Get paid to run? YES PLEASE. I teach fitness classes at a state college and we’re able to pitch ideas for new classes to our boss each semester. Running 13.1 was my pitch at the end of Spring 2012, and they put it on the calendar for this Fall. We are currently in our second week of training, and I am in love with this class. I’ve got seven runners, 3 of which are running a decent pace of about 9 or 9:30 per mile. One runner is a little slower, maybe a 10:30 mile. The last three are right around 11:30 or 12. So, a little more challenging than I’d first thought…I spend most of my runs sprinting up to the people in the lead, jogging back to the ones behind, run/walking with them for a minute or so, and sprinting back to the ones up ahead. Thus their 3 mile run yesterday was more like 5.5 for me. 

What I love more than anything in this class, though, is these people’s motivation. The ones that always take the lead will definitely complete the half-  3 of them have already signed up. The three that bring up the rear told me up front they don’t plan on completing the half, they just want to learn how to run without walking. I’m hoping to convince them to sign up for the 5k instead of the Half and train to complete it without walking. 

One girl in particular makes me beam with pride. On our first run she told me she had been totally sedentary for 2 years. No workouts. Not a single one. I couldn’t help but thinking she needed to drop my class. She ended up going back to the classroom about a half mile into the run.

After class she said she wanted to stick with it and asked if she could. This immediately changed my mind about thinking she should drop my class. This girl, who hadn’t worked out in two years, who had to basically quit on our first 2 mile run, wanted to stick with it. Now that is determination at it’s finest. Our next run, a 5k, she completed in 51 minutes by run walking. If she can run/walk a 5k in 51 minutes after being sedentary for 2 yeas, surely she can get to a point where she can run a 5k without stopping by April 28! She seems really excited to do it. Her time for that same 5k loop yesterday? 48 minutes. 

This is the whole reason I wanted to teach this class. If just one person in my class becomes inspired to stick with it, to get out there and run even when they are the last person to finish, to push through and run a little farther before a walk break, to add another tenth of a mile, this makes my time and effort more than worth it. 

I am a proud proud running mama!

Hot Damn I’m in a Headstand!

Those were the words I uttered (hollered) when I pulled my knees to my chest and pushed my feet into the air all on my own for the first time. Appropriately so, because I was in hot yoga. Hot damn, indeed. Since then I feel the need to do headstands at any given opportunity. I was working on (the very inkling of a thought of beginning) handstands with my mentor on Friday and so of course we took the opportunity to snap a photo of my leaning tower of headstand. I didn’t realize i leaned until I looked at the picture, but whatever people, it’s progress! Check it out.

Image

Ignore my demon eyes, I just want ya’ll to know I can do a headstand.

Onto more delicious things, like muffins.

When I went Paleo I had this idea that I was never going to eat baked goods again. Ha! All I’ve really done is perfected Paleo baking.

No, not really. Because my muffins the other day were a pancake recipe gone wrong. I was out of bananas, so I used pumpkin puree instead. Should work, right? Yes, unless you accidentally add an extra tablespoon of coconut flour, and then realize you have no coconut milk. EFF!!! So I sat, looking forlornly at my much too thick pancake batter, wondering what the hell we were going to eat for breakfast. Then it dawned on me. Muffin batter is really just thick pancake batter that rises, right? So I added some baking soda and put that batter in my super-see-duper awesome silicon muffin pans. Is it still a pan if it’s silicon? Hmmm.

This is what came out.Image

What the yum.

This is what went in ’em.

  • 1/3 can pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • a bunch of cinnamon (depending on how much you love cinnamon, up to a tablespoon)
  • pinch nutmeg, ginger, and cloves
  • 1/4-1/3 cup raisins

Mix together everything but raisins, I used my hand mixer. Fold in raisins. Grease muffin tin with coconut oil or use muffin cups. Divide evenly into muffin tin. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes. Image

When the tiny peaks are starting to brown like in the pic above, they’re done.

Know what I did next? Threw some grassfed butter on that bad boy and gobbled it up. Ok maybe I gobbled three up. Details, whatev.

Image

So this morning, I’d agreed to sub a yoga class at 8 am. WHY DO I CONTINUE TO SAY YES TO EARLY CLASSES?!?!?! Thus, no time for bacon frittatas. We had fresh blueberries and my kiddo had mentioned blueberry muffins, so I figured I’d see how well it worked with a banana and blueberries instead of pumpkin and raisins. And it was DELICIOUS. Duh. Here’s what went into these:

  • 1 banana
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • a bunch of cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of blueberries

Same as with the pumpkin muffins, mix it all together sans blueberries. Fold in the blueberries, and put them into greased muffin tins (or use paper muffin cups). Bake at 375 for ten or so minutes. I should have made a double batch of these.

Image

The fresh blueberries really made the difference.

Image

Next time i’m thinking some coffee and chocolate chunks will be appropriate mix ins!