Yummy Paleo Pork Chops

When I first started on the paleo diet it was very difficult to find many recipes that would work for me.  This was one I came across early on and has become one of our favorites because it is super easy and super yummy.

Start by juicing one lemon, about 1/4 cup of lemon juice.  I like to zap it in the microwave to soften it up a little.  I read that it makes it easier to get the all the juice out that way.  I’m not sure how much of a difference it really makes, but I do it every time now.

Fresh lemon juice

Then add about 2 tbsp of olive oil.

Next, add 3 garlic cloves, minced.  I cheat here and use a jar of minced garlic, the conversion on my jar says to use 1 1/2 tsp.


Finally, add the remaining spices:
1/4 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Blend all ingredients together and pour into a shallow dish.  Add pork chops to marinade.  Allow to chill for about 12 hours or overnight.  Grill, basting with marinade while grilling.

Pork chops

I like to make this marinade first thing in the morning so that it marinates all day to have for dinner.  I add an extra step and flip them around lunch time so that both sides soak up the marinade.  This helps them caramelize better while grilling too.

Flipped chops

Recommended final step: invite friends/family to share the meal with.  Last night we had my brother, Andrew, and his girlfriend, Nicole, over for dinner.  I was nice to catch up with everything they have going on with all of their schoolwork.  It feels so long ago that I was at that stage of life.  As we were talking about some of the classes they are taking that I also took, I could barely remember learning that stuff… especially my Math classes.  Andrew is a Math NUT!  He had to keep guessing what I was trying to remember as those classes are now so far in the back of my brain.  However, we were lucky enough to sneak in a couple of review lessons after dinner.  I am really glad that he is enjoying his equations, but I’m even more glad that I am no longer worried about what X equals! Notice how fascinated Nicole is about finding what X equals.


We ended the night by laughing at the last of the American Idol hopefuls try out, followed by being freaked out about the the Strange Addictions guy who couldn’t stop eating champagne glasses and light bulbs.  Both are shows that we would kinda like to say we have better things to do than waste time watching, but we also can’t help but watch.

New Treasures

Yesterday we were up early to go to the Westchase community garage sales. They have them twice a year, and since it’s such a nice neighborhood they often have some pretty nice junk to get rid of.  Westchase is also a large neighborhood and so many people participate so you’re almost sure to find something you just have to have. I had said that I wanted to find two things: a coat rack and a sewing machine.  Would you believe I was able to find both things?!  Plus it was a beautiful Florida day.  It’s the perfect time of year when it’s not quite so hot and there was a bit of a breeze… perfect day to be outside.Beautiful day
Even though it wasn’t as busy as it sometimes is, it wasn’t long before we hit some traffic jams. It’s amazing the messes people can get themselves into when no one is directing them which way to go.Traffic
Jesse shoppingI think Jesse secretly likes doing garage sales with me now. He used to complain when I wanted him to come. But he often finds some stuff that he wants to, so it’s easier to get him to agree now. This time he only ended up getting some poker chips that will come in handy on game nights.

Coat hangerThis is the coat hanger we got. The base is a little bigger than it looked when we bought it. It sticks out into the doorway more than I thought it would, but it will work great for hanging my purse and sweaters on when I come home. Here are the other fabulous things we found.Our lootA cute purse, a new movie, and…. a sewing machine! Not that I want to become a seamstress, but I would like to learn how to do minor alterations. Especially since almost everything I buy is too long on me. The lady wanted $30 for the sewing machine. Jesse explained that I don’t know how to sew yet so we didn’t think we should spend that much. He first offered $10 and they ended up agreeing on $12! I have no idea if this is a good machine or not, but I figure it will be good enough to learn on. I’m so excited to practice.Sewing machine
And while we were out shopping, dinner was cooking itself in the crockpot. This was a simple and tasty recipe I found on a caveman diet website.

Apple Glazed Pork Roast (crockpot)

3-4 lb. pork loin roast (well trimmed)
salt and pepper
4-6 apples, cored and quartered (peeled, optional)
1/4 cup apple juice
3 Tbsp. raw honey
1 tsp. ginger

Rub roast with salt and pepper. Brown under broiler to remove excess fat, drain well. Place apple quarters in bottom of crockpot. Place roast on top of apples. Combine rest of ingredients, spoon over roast. Cook on low for 10-12 hours.
Apple Glazed Pork Roast

Right now, I LOVE crockpot meals! So much that we are having another one tonight. My brother, Andrew, is coming over and we are cooking one of our new favorite recipes. A couple weeks ago one of the Flash Me Friday-ers posted Roast Sticky Chicken as her favorite recipes. We tried it and it was super yummy, so we are making it again tonight. Check out her blog and try out this recipe for sure!  The house smells so good, I can’t wait for dinner time.  Plus we will have lots of leftovers.Chicken

Diet Details

Fruit saladThe diet is actually going great!  I’m not sure if I feel much of a difference or not.  I think I’m concentrating too much.  But I am surprised about how full I can feel with such limited food options.  I have learned that it’s not all that hard to make fresher food.  I especially love all the fresh fruit we have been eating.  We had to stop by the store tonight to pick up some more fruit.

For breakfast, we have been having bacon and lots of fruit.  I’m pretty sure this is Jesse’s favorite part of my diet.  I mean… how bad can a diet be that includes bacon?!  Lunch is the hardest part.  I had salad Monday and Tuesday.  I’m not really a salad person.  You have to eat a lot of salad to feel full.  I think I’m done with salad for a while now.  Wow, that’s a lot of salad for one paragraph… salad, salad.  🙂  Then dinner is pretty normal to what we usually have.  We just have to make sure we don’t use any sauces in cooking the meats.  There are pretty much no sauces that are allowed.  It’s amazing what you find in your foods when you start reading ingredients!

Lunch today was amazing.  My mom called me yesterday to say that she had made soup, and that there was extra if I wanted to pick it up on my way home from work.  The soup was sooo yummy… and very filling too.  I think I will make this even when I don’t have to eat like this anymore.  Thanks, Mom!

Here’s the recipe (from the South Beach Diet book):

1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp salt
1 (15 oz) can cannellini or great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups lower-sodium vegetable broth (or chicken broth)
freshly ground black pepper

In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat.  Add onion, celery, garlic, basil, rosemary, thyme, and salt; reduce heat and cook, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes, or until vegetables are softened.

Add beans and stir to combine.  Transfer about 3/4 of bean mixture to blender.  Add broth and puree until smooth.  Return mixture to saucepan, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer to heat through.  Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.  Serve warm… about 4 servings.

I added some leftover chicken to make it more of a meal.  Mom said she sometimes likes to add rice to it too.  She also pureed all of the soup instead of the 3/4 like the recipe, and since I’m not allowed to have canned food right now Mom used dry northern beans.

All of this fresh cooking is really making me wish that I had more time to make everything fresh.  This week I have purposely had to set aside time to prepare for each meal.  I’m looking forward to someday when I can concentrate more time on stuff like that.  Maybe when we move to a farm! 😉