the best kind of shopping spree

I love grocery shopping. All shopping, really, but especially grocery shopping. Some girls splurge on expensive handbags while I see handbags as a vehicle for shuttling loads of groceries from the car to the kitchen. I love grocery shopping so much that I, like many other sample-seeking folks, am willing to pay $115.18 just to browse aisles – that’s right, $115.18 for a plastic card with my picture on it just to get in the door. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? I will tell you what is really crazy – not having a Costco membership. I may have dropped a Benjamin yesterday to become part of this “exclusive club,” but today I saved a ton. Technically speaking, I spent more than I normally do (ok a LOT more), but since I won’t need to buy toilet paper until 2018 I consider it a day of savings.

access granted - it's a good day!

access granted – it’s a good day!

After all my Costco fun, I was tired (and full from sampling everything in sight). Never-the-less, it was time to prep for dinner. I have started to get the hang of paleo cooking/eating. Turns out I don’t have to do anything too crazy to fit the paleo mold. Of course, I am still tempted by coffee, milk, cheese, and the crunch of tortilla chips but otherwise I am adjusting just fine; the luxury items that are keeping me sane and on track are red wine paired with a small serving of dark chocolate chip morsels (red wine and dark chocolate are considered acceptable – on occasion – which probably means every night is over-doing it …)

Anyway, the best thing about becoming more comfortable in the kitchen is that Daniel is beginning to benefit from some yummy paleo meals. Tonight we had hake filets (in fishy Catholic fashion) smothered with my newly invented walnut thyme pesto AND spaghetti squash with a chunky mushroom wine sauce.

Walnut Thyme Pesto
1 1/2 cups fresh spinach
1/3 cup chopped fresh Chinese parsley
5 sprigs of thyme
1/3 cup raw walnuts
1 lemon, juiced
3 Tbsp olive oil
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper

Pulse spinach, Chinese parsley, thyme and lemon in a food processor. Add walnuts, salt and pepper and combine in processor while adding olive oil slowly until it becomes paste-like. Spread over hake filets and bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees until fish is white and flaky.

Chunky Mushroom Wine Sauce
1 tsp olive oil
1 sweet white onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can organic diced tomatoes
2 portobello mushroom capes, .5-1 inch pieces, remove stem and gills
1/2 cup organic vegetable broth
3/4 cup dry red wine (I used what we were planning to drink)
1 tsp coconut flour (optional for thickening)

Saute onions and garlic in oil until softened and slightly browned (about 12 minutes). Pour canned tomatoes and vegetable broth into pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and let the mixture reduce by at least half. Add mushrooms and red wine and let reduce again until only a nominal amount of liquid remains. Quickly incorporate coconut flour with a fork. Add any remaining fresh herbs and s&p to taste. Serve ladled over spaghetti squash.

One foodie philosophy that I am philosophically opposed to is that you should ‘serve white wine with fish and red wine with red meat.’ Blah blah blah. It’s my firm opinion that you should drink what you like! For me, that’s RED. Tonight we had an Italian red blend called Tormaresca that was recommended to me by one of my new clients; I share exercise tips and he shares wine tips – not a bad tradeoff! I couldn’t resist when I saw it on display at Costco for under $10 bucks. It paired beautifully with the tomatoey mushroom sauce, and believe it or not, the fish too!

drink what you like, and be happy!

drink what you like, and be happy!

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