Category Archives: Fast Food

Rachel’s iPot Enchiladas

This is the filling for enchiladas, and we just use it like Chicken Tinga, which is to say in any kind of soft taco shell or on a bowl of rice.

EASY, FAST, PANTRY STAPLES

Mix up the sauce in iPot (Instant Pot Pressure Cooker)

2 Tbsp. avocado oil, or any oil or fat you want

2 Tbsp. dried shallots

Or you can brown some fresh onions or shallots in the oil then add everything else…

15 oz. can of tomato sauce

1 tsp. dried oregano

2 tsp. ground cumin

2 tsp. granulated garlic

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. chili powder (a blend) or Emeril’s Southwest Essence

1 tsp. Salt

1/4 tsp. Chipotle pepper powder

1 dash of cinnamon – about 1/8 tsp., not more

4 oz. can of diced Hatch/roasted green chilies, mild

There is plenty of flavor for me and I cannot have tomato paste. But, if you do find you need any more flavor, or if you want to use fresh tomatoes, add a couple tablespoons of tomato paste.

Toss in 8 raw chicken tenderloins. These can be frozen or not–the Instant Pot starts the timer when the whole batch comes up to temp.  Set the pressure cooker to 15 minutes of high pressure (“Poultry”). Once the thing cools down (you can release the pressure when you want), take out the chicken and shred it using two forks and put it back into the sauce. Keep warm for the rest of the day until everyone gets their dinner!


Taco shell ideas:

  • Organic corn tortillas
  • wheat flour tortillas
  • any wrapper you want
  • a bowl of rice
  • Zenbelly plantain tortillas
  • Cassava flour tortillas

All of your basic taco toppings, including:

  • Fresh cilantro
  • raw onions
  • cheese
  • sour cream
  • avocado

Rachel’s favorite:  chopped jicama, avocado, cilantro and fresh squeeze of lime in an Organic corn tortilla.

RECIPE: Our Favorite Smoothie (Berries)

The trick to making a rich, creamy smoothie that a kid will love, is to use the fresh ingredients that comprise ice cream:  egg yolk, vanilla, salt and something creamy.  If you eat dairy, I’d add heavy cream.  You can also use yogurt of whatever type you want, but vanilla yogurt makes it good.

OUR FAVORITE SMOOTHIE

by Rachel Ernst

YIELD:  One (1) serving in 20 oz. Vitamix container.

If doubling, use the large blender container.

  • 1/4 cup (65g) coconut milk (full fat canned) or (2 Tbsp hemp hearts + 2 Tbsp water)
  • 3 oz unsweetened almond milk beverage or water
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 pinch salt
  • Little drizzle of vanilla extract (1/4 tsp) or some vanilla bean powder
  • Vitamin C powder
  • 1 KAL stevia
  • Chlorella/ spirulina
  • 1 cup  (115 – 123 grams) FROZEN Blend of dark berries: black, blue, and raspberries

If your berries are frozen, blend everything EXCEPT the berries.  After that’s smooth, then add the berries and blend it smooth again.

Then blend in:

  • 2 ice cubes, if desired to thicken it up and cut the density

RECIPE: v.R Shamrock Smoothie

v.R Shamrock Smoothie
There are many versions of a healthy Shamrock Smoothie. Here’s the v.R version (version.Rachel) Continue reading

Cheat Sheet for My daily Protein, Fiber & PBX

Shake Day 1

  1. 1 Tbsp. Ultimate Superfood Fusion
  2. 1-2 tsp. of Psyllium (NOW brand)
  3. 1 Tbsp. collagen (contains a lot of glycine, so add Inositol…)
  4. 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. Inositol powder–everyone will need a different dosage. For some mood problems like OCD and anxiety, dosages can be 2g up to 18 g per day!  I’m starting small as all I want is a calming effect on my lower level symptoms. I read that it’s good to take the Inositol with the glycine, which is a major component of collagen.)
  5. Ashwagandha – amount of a capsule.
  6. potato starch (pre-biotic)
  7. Probiotics (PBX)
  8. MCT Oil

Shake Day 2

Continue reading

Stress much? My daily Protein fiber, PBX & herbs

This is the powdered stuff I mix up a batch at a time.  To view the stripped down version, see the Cheat Sheet for this daily protein shake.

Should YOU do it??

Determine your need for each of my suggested ingredients and then use just the ones you need. If you are eating fermented foods, you may not necessarily need the prebiotics. I take them because I cannot eat fermented foods. Each person has different needs.

YOU CAN SIMPLIFY THIS!

To stay easy and economical, determine your ingredients and buy in bulk.

ASK ME!

I have a lot of purchasing experience (and have lived in four different states in the past 15 years) and can advise you how to get this stuff as easily as possible. Once you get going, it doesn’t seem as difficult. I’ve been doing this for years and trying to share what works for me and desire to help people find the solution that’s going to work for them. I’ve discovered that I need these ingredients to operate at my best. It helps me be more resilient. It does not make up for a lost night of sleep. Folks, I’m getting more consistently resilient, and recovering some of my lost health over time, by staying on my program.

  • hydrolyzed collagen (glycine): excellent source of glycine which is very important to me. It keeps me calm. If I don’t get my shake in the morning, then I take some magnesium glycinate. you can get bovine or porcine or even some that are made from fish (the superior source; I care because I am moving toward rotating my sources of collagen also. I would hate to sensitize to my meat proteins!!
  • greenfood powder; Ultimate Superfood Fusion from Z-Natural Foods.com
  • Ashwagandha root: https://www.braintropic.com/nootropics/ashwagandha/
  • whey protein if you are dairy tolerant. I use vegan protein instead. I use Orgain with greens or Vega with greens as my extra booster pack. This does NOT replace the collagen!
  • fibers – choose or rotate with psyllium, ground flax seed, prebiotic fiber blend such as Garden of Life Prebiotic fiber. I choose to use all 3 or rotate. Psyllium is cheap and effective. Flax is helpful with hormone regulation in the gut. Prebiotic fiber is important if you are working on improving your gut flora balance (which also affects hormone regulation and so much more).

How I Do It

I have a bunch of half-pint canning jars with plastic lids that I measure up and use for about 10-day batches. Each morning I mix the powder with almond milk and drink it down before I eat any food, as I’m taking supplements in pill form.

I have to split this in two different batches because I don’t want to sensitize my immune system to these ingredients (more easily happens to me as I’m aging). I alternate days with shake #1 and #2. You could combine shakes #1 and #2 if you have no inflammation, allergies, etc. Here’s how I do it:

Shake Day 1

  1. 1 Tbsp. Ultimate Superfood Fusion
  2. 1-2 tsp. of Psyllium (NOW brand)
  3. 1 Tbsp. collagen (contains a lot of glycine, so add Inositol…)
  4. 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. Inositol powder–everyone will need a different dosage. For some mood problems like OCD and anxiety, dosages can be 2g up to 18 g per day!  I’m starting small as all I want is a calming effect on my lower level symptoms. I read that it’s good to take the Inositol with the glycine, which is a major component of collagen.)
  5. Ashwagandha – amount of a capsule.
  6. potato starch (pre-biotic)
  7. Probiotics (PBX)
  8. MCT Oil

Shake Day 2

Continue reading

RECIPE: No Bake Cookies

Family favorite recipe from God knows where.  Good in the summer–you have to boil the mixture 5 minutes but no oven!  Continue reading

Mayan bowl tips

This is how I made some easy Mayan Bowls* on a moderate temperature summer day.  In the evening I started two Chuck roasts in my instant pot:

1. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and brown on the sauté setting. Brown all four sides of the two roasts.

2. Slow cook 6 hours with a can of tomato sauce, layered with sprinklings of ground Cumin, powdered onion, dried onion flakes, garlic cubes and/or granulated garlic, paprika.

3. After six hours it should be falling apart. Pull it into little pieces and put it back in the sauce. [You probably have too much sauce left over. You can freeze extra sauce with all that good flavor in it and use in either enchilada sauce or as a base for some veggie soup–put a little bit of the beef in there too, maybe some barley, and don’t forget your green beans.]

Wash and spin dry chopped fresh curly kale or kale of any kind.  Massage well with light olive oil and salt. You can use any leftovers of this for salads or put into a bag in the fridge and keep for leftover Mayan Bowls

Chop or smash avocado with lime and salt. Or you could go with some prepared guacamole from the store.

I like to cook my canned black beans extra because I like them a little soft. I drain a can, add some water and cook for another 10 minutes or so with a little extra salt.  [I know some people eat the beans straight from the can.  Some brands may be softer than others.]

Cook some quinoa, wild rice, brown rice or the Trader Joe’s Organic Superfood Pilaf shown below (from the freezer section).

Assemble bowls with whatever ingredients each person wants adding extra lime juice on top of the kale and be generous with it.

Toss tortilla chips, especially Garden of Eatin’ red-hot blues or Costco Kirkland organic tortilla chips.

Some people might like salsa on there for a more Mexican-style bowl.

Top your bowl with some crispy shallots. You can substitute crispy onion rings. Or perhaps some kind of toasted nut or pumpkin seeds with garlic on them.


Easy addition to Mayan bowls. Cook according to package directions, about 10 minutes.

RECIPE: Lemony snack

Mix fresh lemon juice into cashew butter with some stevia extract powder.

Dip apples in it.

Tip:  Every nut butter and also chocolate… will get much thicker when you add a small bit of water. This is what makes chocolate “seize up”.  With nut butter, if you keep adding more liquid, it will get past the point where the fiber absorbs all the water and the extra water will then begin to loosen the mixture so it becomes more “watery.”  So, the *ratio of water-to-nut-butter is the important thing in getting the correct consistency. If it seizes up, just keep adding a little bit more liquid at a time until you get the consistency you want.

 

Pistachios are great for your gut biome

Faithful reader and champion of Rachels.FYI, Jane W. has brought to my attention a great health tip for those of us who are “gardeners of our biomes,” (cultivators of our gut flora).

Pistachios.

Here is an article from a trusted resource, Mark Sisson in his article 16 Things that Affect Your Gut Bacteria.

Friends, the way my blog is supposed to work, is when friends share with me, I somehow synthesize it in my Brain of Rachel, and often would (at least TRY) to share it back out, either immediately or in some way, at some point. My thinking is to try to be a hub for a circle of friends who are all interested in actually being healthier. I TRY, because this is not my job. It’s just my passion. And, even though I don’t have time for this passion, I make time. Helping friends be healthier is worth it. I saw Jane’s comment tonight after I have been contemplating, yet again, whether I have time to do this blog. I don’t have time to make it look beautiful or like the slick blogs that are out there. But, I can keep it up on the server, alive, if not thriving. And, it can serve a purpose.

And, hey, if I can keep Jane on her probiotics, then it’s all worth it.

Non-dairy protein powder 70:30 pea:rice

70:30 pea:rice blend… is seen as the vegan alternative to whey due to their similar amino acid profiles.”1

If you need a  protein powder that’s vegan and dairy-free and low cost, look for a pea-rice blend. Orgain protein powder awaits you at the nexus of Costco (low cost and convenience if you are a Costco shopper) and a Primal-ish yet busy lifestyle.

There are of course things I don’t like about Orgain.
1)  Real food is always a better option, IF that food is paleo style.
2)  Whey protein (non-denatured) is better, if you can.  My #1 reason is brain neurotransmitters.
3)  The fat that it does contain not ideal an ideal form. High Oleic Sunflower Oil.
4)  It can have a bit of a chalky taste.  I fear this is rancidity.  The large Costco size is not a great idea if you’re not going to consume it regularly. Don’t let it sit around a long time. Perhaps keeping it in the fridge is a good idea. I keep mine in pantry because my fridge is too full of real food. Maybe keeping a smaller portion out, while the bulk of it sits in a deep freezer is a compromise.

Good points:
1) Good blend of Pea and Rice
3) Chia seed and hemp protein added
2) Sweeteened with erythritol, stevia, and monk fruit extract. Not overly sweet
3) chocolatey

My 12 year old is making a lot of food choices that I’m not going to create a battle about. One of them currently is he prefers Orgain over whey powder.  He says he likes the way it tastes.

Quick SHAKE:

1 scoop hydrolyzed collagen (this is not vegan, but it is dairy free and it is high in glycine for a brain-calming effect)
1 scoop (half serving) of Organi
Milk of your choice. (My son prefers our whole, non-homogenized, low-temp pasteurized milk, which happens to be a convenience purchase in Minneapolis.)
Shake in a jar  (I use smaller mayonnaise jars)

When I need really fast protein, I grab this.  For my son, I will work at finding a whey protein recipe that he likes. I suspect it could be plain whey (not vanilla) with Mt. Hagen coffee granules.  Stay tuned.