I know I said my next blog post would consist of how I cook whole artichokes in the oven, but that was like 9 months ago and no one remembers so it’s ok… speaking of nine months, I’m pregnant! About 6 months pregnant – 26 weeks to be most accurate. Here is a pic of my almost 25 weeks of pregnancy… I have a more recent one, but it was also laundry day, and I don’t need to feel like you’re judging me right now. I’m sensitive. And pregnant.
Oh, and we got married!!
So I need to make a couple of confessions. First, I know my blog is gluten and dairy free, but since this new growth in my belly, I have allowed myself to enjoy both in moderation. I will add that I aim for higher quality of dairy products, such as grass fed butter (Kerrygold is the brand I use at home) and nicer, unprocessed cheeses. And as much as I would like to say I mostly enjoy breads of the Ezekiel variety (sprouted ancient grains), that would be a lie. My grandma made some basic spaghetti with meat sauce the other night – it was delicious. And it’s been years, but I allowed myself some fettuccini alfredo a month or so ago… The baby wanted it! I apologize for my hypocrisy, but I promise to only post recipes that correlate with my blog beliefs. And this is by far NOT how I plan to continue eating.
My second confession is that I’ve totally slacked on my gardening. The summer was just soooooooooo hot, and watering all my plants took foooooooreveeeeeeeeerrr. Then I found out I was pregnant in August, dealt with some annoying as heck morning sickness, and juggled two part time jobs unable to tell my employers the “truth” yet. Plus you never know what type of animals are pooping in your garden, which can be especially toxic for pregos. So I avoided it. Yep. Those are my excuses and I’m sticking to them! I did plant a few plant clippings/growths I rooted (bougainvillea & wandering jew), but the weeds simply took over my garden beds and it was too much for me to keep up with. It’s crazy. I wish I could hire someone to come and make it look pretty again… and maybe throw some mulch over the dirt to help prevent future weeds from growing? I don’t want to use weed killer chemicals, so I need to figure out a method that works. I’m open for suggestions!!
The pepper and tomato plants DID yield products for consumption before the summer sun cooked them away (tomatoes specifically), and the peppers continued to provide treats until the freeze killed them. I tried to save them by covering with blankets, but my efforts were unsuccessful. My one potted cayenne plant is the only one that still lives today.
But the one thing that hasn’t changed, is that I’ve continued to cook. Some weeks I cook more than others, but here’s a recipe I’ve made a couple times that is a keeper:
Grass Fed Beef Meatballs
- 1 lb Ground Beef
- 3 TBS Liquid Aminos
- 1 Small White Onion
- 1 Small Bell Pepper (I used peppers from my garden that grew smaller than your typical grocery store pepper)
- (optional) 1 Serrano or ½ Jalapeno Pepper
- Cooking fat of choice (I used bacon lard)
Step 1: CHOP & PROCESS. Quarter your onion and bell pepper into chunks and place in your food processor with liquid aminos. Process until minced.
Step 2: COMBINE. In a separate bowl, place your ground beef and combine (I used my hands) portions of your minced mixture from the food processor. Do not add it all at once, as you may not need it all! But then again, maybe you will – you can always add more but you can’t remove it once you mix it all together.
Step 3: SHAPE & COOK. Preheat the skillet to medium high heat (I did level 6 of 10), then add some lard to coat the bottom. Once heated, make little balls (about 1.5 inches round) and start placing them one by one on the skillet, remembering where you started so you know where to begin flipping first. Because of the veggies, liquid will begin to pool at the bottom, along with some fats that are cooking off the meat. The OCD in me decided to scrape it out, which can be frustrating, so that task is up to you. *I am going to attempt baking these one day and will get back to you on that.
Step 4: FLIP & EAT. Once they’re good and brown on one side, begin flipping from your starting point and let them cook until done. Eat them.
Now what you chose to accompany these bad boys is up to you. I first made them as a snack with marinara sauce for a spa party I hosted at my house. Great finger food! My mother-in-law requested I bring them for our Thanksgiving gathering at their home because she liked them so much. Also brought a side dish of marinara. Let me know how you decide to eat them!
PS. This is our kitchen table currently due to cold weather…
**Check out my FAQ Ingredients Page – leave a comment if there’s something you’d like to see added!