Meats/beef

Seared Grass Fed Sirloin

Ahhh, steak. The creme de la creme when you think of a “fancy” meal. There are plenty of nights where I crave a fatty cut of steak or a bolognese (in fact, I have a bolognese recipe… here), and I have a soft spot for skirt steak or short ribs. On other nights, a nice sirloin will do. I have to confess, I’ve never been a pro with making steak; I tend to overcook and make it inedible. It usually comes out tough and chewy, even when cutting against the grain. This steak is an exception to my “I screwed up the steak, again” curse, and it’s so easy you’ll slap yourself (but don’t).

One thing that I never compromise for is the quality of meat. It is SO important to know where your meat comes from, and get the best cuts. I always shop for grass-fed meats, and love using Butcher Box for meat. Their product is top notch and can feed a large family for a few weeks. You can skip a month, two months, and add specials like their bacon (THEIR BACON IS LIFE CHANGING) or burgers. Either way, consider buying grass fed meats, if there’s one thing you change to your budget, do this. I won’t bore you with science behind it or research from articles I’ve read and podcasts I’ve listened to, but the quality of meat matters. Period. Trader Joe’s does make solid grass fed meats, including steak.

I started by soaking the steaks in olive oil, instead of coating the pan with oil. Why? This eliminates the crackling and sputtering of the oil, that’s why sparky! For the seasoning, I used a more-than-generous amount of fresh cracked ground pepper and pink sea salt. I seasoned both sides and let the steak get to room temperature. Using a cast-iron skillet, I heated the pan then slowly added the steaks. These steaks were about 3/4″ -1″ thick so I gauged my time carefully. We like our steaks more medium/medium rare, so I seared the steaks for 4 minutes on each side, then threw it in the oven on BROIL for a good 5 minutes. For medium well, add 2-3 minutes per side. The most important piece is to LET THE STEAK REST. The steak will tense up if cut into right away, the same as man-handling it right out of the fridge. Let the steak do it’s thing!

I sliced small dollops of butter to top on the steaks for additional fat and goodness, and paired it with potatoes. Typical meat and potatoes dish, but oh so satisfying.

Bean(less) Beef Chili

Let’s face it.  There are a bagillion and five ways to make chili.  Do I add beans? If so, what kind? Should I make it in the crockpot? Instapot? Dutch oven?  How long does it cook for?  Do I add rice? Veggies? GAH!  Chili has become such a versatile and fun dish to make because the truth is, it’s whatever you want it to be.  To be fair, and to give credit, chili in its traditional sense is cooked low and slow on a burner for a few hours, and has a variety of beans and made with beef, but this can absolutely be made with turkey if that’s your prerogative.  Tonight, it’s made in a dutch oven and blended with fresh veggies!IMG_0329

The chili I make is most of the time bean-less as I don’t prefer beans (and being that I’m 90% of the time eating Paleo-style, beans are not part of the Paleo protocol) and they’re just added texture that I just don’t like.  Now, that’s not to say this chili isn’t flavorful… because it definitely packs a punch!  With layered seasonings like cumin, chili powder, pepper flakes, onion and garlic powder, and of course S&P, it creates a harmony unlike no other.  I start with a large onion and roughly chop it so that the pieces are not all the same, but relatively small and thin. I heat my dutch oven before adding the oil, then add in the onions and some salt.  The onions will begin to become translucent and fragrant, then I add the in sliced cherry tomatoes (really just for fun and texture) and let it settle.IMG_0317

I take 2 lbs of grass fed ground beef and add it to the pot, seasoning with just the salt, onion and garlic powder, and mix together well.  As the ground beef begins to brown, I break apart the large meat chunks with a wooden spoon.  Mix all together and add in the tomato sauce (for tonight, I just used what I had in house, which was a jar of Classico sauce, but I prefer traditional tomato sauce in a can).  Stir together to coat all ingredients and then add in the chili powder, cumin, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Stir and let sit on a low flame for two hours.  After one hour, I add in chopped zucchini.

Alas, the results is a chunky, hearty, and bean(less) chili that packs a kick and warms the soul simultaneously.  Top it off with sour cream, cheese crisps, or grated cheddar for extra pizzazz.  Enjoy and, Nomaste 🙂

Bean(less) Chili

Course Dinner
Cuisine American, Chili
Keyword beanless, chili, dinner, healthy, Hearty, paleo, Soup, winter
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Resting time 5 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings 10 cups
Author nomastehungry

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 jar low-sugar tomato sauce
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes sliced
  • 1 medium zucchini sliced then chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions

  1. In a large pan or dutch oven, turn heat to medium and then add the olive oil.  Add in chopped onions and begin to let simmer. Add tomatoes and stir.  Let simmer and occasionally stir, waiting for the skins to begin to peel and the onions to be translucent

  2. Add in ground beef and break apart with wooden spoon.  Stir together with onions and tomatoes, adding garlic and onion powder and salt. Let sit and brown, about 7-8 minutes.

  3. Pour in tomato sauce and stir to coat evenly.   Sprinkle in chili powder, red pepper flakes, pepper, and cumin.  Cover and turn flame to low.  Simmer for 2 hours

  4. After one hour of cooking, add in the chopped zucchini.  Stir and cover.  Cook for remaining time; stir occasionally.

  5. Serve over rice or sweet potato, regular potato, etc. Add cheese or favorite condiments as needed and enjoy!

Shepherd’s Pie

Throwback to when hubs and I went to London and had the most incredible food at a pub our last night in Europe.  I had a burger, but what did hubs have? Yep, shepherd’s pie.  We were not disappointed, in fact, it was probably one of the best meals we had when were abroad this past August.  The butter flavor of the potatoes, atop a layer of slow-cooked ground Dorset lamb, with a medley of veggies.  I’m drooling.IMG_4246

Shepherd’s pie, to me, is a comfort food, but can be made anytime!  I love the different textures in it, especially with the potatoes on top.  I made this version with Russet gold potatoes mashed with half and half, butter, and a ton of garlic powder.  The innards of the pie included ground grass fed beef, carrots, celery, onion, and loads of spices and flavors, lest not forget… Worcestershire sauce (woo, spelled that in one shot.. bam!)

I can imagine that this tastes great with ground lamb (obviously because that’s what we had in London) and with sweet potato mash on top.  I’ll have to give that version a whirl next time.  I browned the meat, added in the veggies, the seasoning, and then a 1/4 cup of flour (GASP!  I USED REAL FLOUR THIS TIME!) to thicken and absorb the liquid (beef bone broth/stock).  For the finale, I ladled the mash on top and spread to a relatively thick layer.  The assembled “pie” baked for 20 minutes then broiled for 10 to brown and crisp the edges of the potato on top.  Damn, this came out 10/10.  Give it a go, cheers mate! Xx 🙂

Shepherd's Pie

Course Dinner
Cuisine Comfort, English
Keyword beef, comfort food, shepherds pie, winter recipe
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting time 5 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8
Author nomastehungry

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lbs Grass Fed Ground Beef
  • 1 carrot peeled and diced
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 celery stalk chopped
  • 1/2 c beef stock preferrably bone broth
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • cumin
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • paprika to taste, or for coloring
  • 2-3 tbsp flour for thickening meat
  • pepper flakes
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 2 bay leaves

Mashed Potatoes

  • 4 medium Russet Potatoes peeled, chopped, then boiled
  • 3 tbsp butter grass fed
  • 1/3 c heavy cream
  • garlic powder generous amount
  • salt to taste

Instructions

For the meat filling:

  1. In a large cast iron skillet, brown the meat in some oil or spray oil.

  2. Add in carrots, onions, celery.  Cook until onions are semi translucent and the meat is browned.

  3. Season the meat mixture with the cumin, salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder, Worcestershire sauce, and paprika.  Stir to coat all the meat and mixture.  Add in bone broth and flour.  Stir until the meat mixture absorbs the liquid and becomes a thicker consistency.  Let simmer for 15-20m.

For the potatoes

  1. Dice potatoes and add to boiling water.

  2. After 20 minutes, potatoes should be tender.  Drain potatoes and place them into a mixing bowl.

  3. Add in butter, garlic and heavy cream.  Mash together until the potatoes are creamy and can form high peaks.

Assembly of Shepherd Pie

  1. Preheat oven to 375* degrees

  2. Layer mashed potatoes on top of the meat in the skillet.  The layer should be on the thicker side.

  3. Place skillet on middle rack.  Let bake for 15-20.  Mashed potatoes should begin to brown.

  4. Move the skillet to the broil rack (top rack) for 5-10 minutes or until sides are bubbling and are crisp.  Serve immediately!

Slow Braised Short Ribs in Bone Broth and Red Wine

Sundays are for lazy mornings with a cup of coffee, Fixer Upper on HGTV, and home-cooked dinners.  A few years ago, I stopped eating red meat because it made me feel super bloated and inflamed; I felt like I couldn’t digest the meat.  Fast forward to a little research, a bit of experimenting, and I am back on the saddle, chomping on buffalo wings and Bistecca Alla Fiorentina (I actually re-introduced meat back in my diet in Italy, 2015).   My findings told me that it wasn’t the meat itself per se, it was the quality and where the meat was raised and how it was treated. Ever since switching to Butcher Box meat or high-quality grass-fed/grass-finished beef, my stomach does bloat, I get a euphoric high (look it up – it exists!) from eating quality meals, and I feel stronger than I felt eating only plants. (disclaimer: no judgement if your body runs solely on plants, I love me some veggie meals as well, I just thrive more on meats and fats).IMG_3987

Anywho, I’ve seen restaurants whip up some bangin’ recipes involving short ribs.  I honestly never knew what they were or how they looked because they were always shredded or legitimately falling off the bone as I ate.  Short ribs are one of those cuts that is super tender when cooked correctly, and can easily turn chewy and tough.  My favorite way to make these babies is to braise them in (or on, in this case) the oven for 2-3 hours on a medium-low flame in broth and yes, lushes, red wine.  Red wine adds beautiful notes and aromas, also the meat itself turns a succulent red color #drool.  The best part?  It all gets cooked in a dutch oven.

Seasoning is super simple: salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano.  I quickly pan sear the short ribs in some Kerrygold butter (a staple in my household), browning each side.  I added the red wine – I used Cabernet, but a Merlot works too – to deglaze the bottom.  After a few minutes of simmering, I add in two containers (each measured 1 pint) of bone broth and sprinkled some rosemary on top of the ribs.  This simmered for 2.5 hours on low.  I swear this was the most buttery, flavorful, and tender piece of meat I’ve had in a while, paired with my cheesy roasted broccoli I was a happy pup :).  Nomaste!

Slow Braised Short Ribs in Bone Broth and Red Wine

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs grass fed short ribs
  • 2 tbs grass fed butter
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 2 pints or two cartons bone broth, beef
  • Dried oregano
  • Garlic powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions

  1. In a large pan or dutch oven, heat butter over medium heat.
  2. Season short ribs with dry seasonings, be generous here!
  3. Add short ribs to pan/dutch oven to brown, 3-4 minutes per side. Re-season if you need to. Add in cup of red wine to de-glaze the bottom of the pan. Turn short ribs over. Simmer for five minutes
  4. Add in bone broth and stir/turn the short ribs. Cover and let simmer for 2-3 hours on medium to medium-low heat (low is preferred). Meet may not fall off the bone, but it should be tender where you can fork off pieces rather easily.
  5. Serve with cheesy roasted broccoli, sweet potatoes, rice, etc. Enjoy!

Kale with Sausage and Onion

I’m one of those people that has a love-hate relationship with kale.  Sometimes I’m craving it, but other times I want nothing to do with it.  Kale can be so versatile: sautéed, steamed, made into chips, tossed with some oil and lemon, or layered in a sandwich.  My personal favorite: sautéed for sure.IMG_3808

This recipe is so delicious and perfect for lunch and meal prepped.  I’m totally one of those ladies who will #mealprep on Instagram and be all proud I took care of my food for the week, and this one never fails me.  For the sausage, I never skimp out – I always use pork, but it has to be good quality.  I like Niman Ranch or Applegate (or even Vermont brand has quality nitrate-free uncured sausage).  The snap that the sausage has on it when it’s cooked is great and takes seasoning very well.  I cut the links into 1/4in thick circles and chop the onion into slices as well.  The onion goes in the pan first and will cook until translucent and fragrant (who doesn’t love the smell of cooking onions in a pan?).  Then I add the sausage and sauté until the sausage browns on the sides.

I like a traditional Old bay seasoning, but didn’t have any so I opted with a Mexican blend.  It acted as a nice little twist to the dish.   After the sausage is pretty much browned on both sides, add in the kale and stir it in by layering the onions and sausage on top to wilt the leaves.  Continue to do this and add as much kale as you’d like!  I also added a bit more oil to saturate the kale and get things nice and seasoned.  This could be done with a varietal of foods like spinach instead of kale, chicken sausage, peppers AND onions (mind.blown), or stick to the recipe!  The choice is yours 🙂 Happy cooking!

Kale with Sausage and Onion

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6

Ingredients

  • 1 pkg sausage
  • 2 bunches organic kale - rinsed; just the leaves
  • 1 medium onion sliced thin
  • 3 tbsp olive oil I used avocado oil
  • Seasoning such as Old Bay or your choice!

Instructions

  1. In a large sauce pan, heat the oil on a medium heat.
  2. Slice onions into long strips and set aside. Chop the sausage links into 1/4in thick rounds and set aside.
  3. Add onions to the pan and sauté until fragrant and translucent
  4. Add in sausage to the onions and begin to sauté until browned.
  5. Season the onions and sausage with choice of seasoning and stir.
  6. Layer in the kale and stir in as needed. Add in a bit more oil as desired.
  7. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

Swap out pork sausage for chicken as desired. Use spinach instead of kale if thats' what you prefer!