Sunday, April 14, 2013

30 Day Paleo Challenge: Day 22

The month of April already seems to be flying by, which is honestly fine with me, because that means summer will be here before we know it!  Random side note:  I love summer, and in fact, it already kind of feels like summer outside.  At least down here in the South, the weather's been absolutely beautiful!  Now, I know that some of you are probably thinking I'm crazy, it's only April 14th, but I have a very busy week ahead of me, and time always seems to disappear whenever that happens.  I promise to try my best though, to continue to update my blog throughout the week, especially seeing my challenge is beginning to wind down.  Unfortunately though, I have school during the day, and in the evenings I'll be working on a wedding cake for my friend Juliene, so my free time will be pretty sparse.  Juliene's wedding is this upcoming weekend and I'm so excited for her and Jesse.

I first met Juliene not too long after Jeff and I moved down to North Carolina.  At the time, she was roommates with my team member, Mark, who taught science.  Over the years, I discovered that Juliene herself loves to bake, so when she asked me if I'd make the cake for her wedding, I felt truly honored.  By now, some of you who read my blog, already know that if I had to choose between baking and cooking, I'd choose baking in a heartbeat.  I absolutely love making savory sweets for people!  I'm usually pretty good too, about not eating what I make, but I am known to take small samples during the process, just to make sure everything tastes the way it should, and that it's edible.  However, due to my challenge, I'm going to have to rely solely on my wonderful taste tester and husband, Jeff.  I foresee a very good week is in his future!

Anyway........getting back on topic and back to my challenge.......Last night I made myself Turkey Zucchini Boats, and already have plans to modify the recipe in the future.  This is not because they weren't delicious, but mostly due to the fact that there are a multitude of toppings and combinations that I want to try out.  However, here's how I made them last night:

Turkey Zucchini Boats
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Makes 2 boats (single serving)
1 large zucchini
8-10 oz. lean ground turkey (I cooked a pound so I would have leftovers for a salad later)
1 small onion chopped
½ Tbsp. chili powder
½ Tbsp. cumin
¼ tsp. garlic powder
½ packet taco seasoning (Or a whole packet if cooking a pound)
Salsa (as much as desired)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

While the oven is preheating, cut the zucchini in half lengthwise, then, using a melon baller, hollow out the middles.  Save the hollowed out portion of the zucchini for later use.  Now, place the zucchini face down in a pot of boiling water for 1 minute.  Remove the halves and place into a shallow baking dish that’s been lightly coated with olive oil (I use the spray). 

In a medium to large skillet lightly brown the ground turkey along with the onion.  As the turkey is cooking, add in the chili powder, cumin, and garlic powder.  Once the turkey has browned, and any excess grease has been drained, add in the taco seasoning and follow the directions from the packet.

Once the meat is ready, pour the desired amount (only if cooking extra, otherwise place it all) into a medium size bowl.  Add in the desired amount of salsa, and the chopped up, hollowed out, zucchini pieces.  Stir around until well combined.

Next, scoop the meat mixture into the prepared zucchini boats filling them as full as you would like.  Garnish the boats with a little extra salsa, cover with aluminum foil, and then place the baking dish in the oven.  Let them bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the zucchini is cooked through.

Remove from the oven and serve warm!

(I think these would be great topped with a Mexican sauce and some cheddar cheese.  The only reason I didn’t do it myself was due to eating Paleo)
Inspired by: Skinny Taste
My Menu for Day 22:
Breakfast: 3 egg whites + 1 whole egg, 3 slices Canadian bacon
Lunch: Salad - 2 cups spinach, 3 strawberries (cut) 7 small blackberries, 1/2 a pear, 3 oz. shredded chicken, 2 oz. ham, 1/2 Tbsp. chopped pecans, and a dash of balsamic vinegar
Snack: 100 calorie almonds
Dinner: Leftover Turkey Zucchini Boat


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