Bratwurst Boats

Happy Sunday!

We are having a lazy Sunday (by lazy, I mean full of cooking, yard work, Zumba, Barre, and football) here in casa de Stephenson-to-be. We went to a fantastic wedding yesterday over in Charlottesville and had an amazingly fantastic time. Two thumbs up, Danny Yeh and Angela…you guys nailed it!!! Such a beautiful ceremony, great atmosphere, and all around good times were had by all. I stayed up way past my bedtime, but it was worth every minute!

So now that we are in the swing of things with football season–HAIL–we are getting into game-time sports food. There are going to be lots of Paleo experiments going on in our home during the fall, so let me know if you want to come hang out! I won’t even force you to root for the Skins if you don’t want. Regardless, the inspiration for this experiment came from a comment on one of my previous blog posts (ahem, Sara…!!!). On my post about a cucumber canoe, she mentioned something about hot dogs, so of course my brain started going on overdrive. I was never a big hot dog person, but with Labor Day approaching (Yes, I know Labor Day has passed, but that is when we tried this for the first time…), I decided to give this a whirl and test it out on a nice American holiday! Let me tell you, it did not disappoint. In fact, I don’t think I have stopped thinking about it ever since. We are having it again today while watching the game, and I. CANNOT. WAIT.

Okay, I will stop raving and just tell you how to make it:

Bratwurst Boats

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Ingredients:

Pickle Halves

Bratwurst

Yellow Onion

Bell Pepper (we used yellow, but you may use whatever color you prefer!)

Sauerkraut

Olive Oil

Directions:

1. Cut your peppers and onions.

2. On the stove top, drizzle about 2 Tablespoons of olive oil into the skillet and add the brats. Brown them and make sure to flip them to get them to cook evenly.

3. Next up, add your peppers and onions. Cook them until your onions are translucent, making sure to stir the mixture occasionally.

4. Add your sauerkraut to the skillet. Mix it all together and cook to desired consistency

5. Once it is done cooking, place to the side to let it cool down a little bit.

6. Take your pickles and spoon out the seeds to make your boat.

7. Assemble this however you choose! I tried cutting the brats up into smaller pieces and put them inside of my bratwurst boat with the sausage, onions, and kraut on top (pictured above). Shep sliced his brat length-wise, put the pickle boat on top and used the inside of the pickle to hold the toppings (pictured below). Regardless of how you assemble your masterpiece, just know that you are about to taste fantastic food. The flavors just go together so incredibly well.

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I cannot wait until lunch!

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Shrimp Cucumber Salad

I just got back from an amazing post-work run, and I have come to a solid conclusion. I will never ever be a contender to win a race, but sometimes it just feels fantastic to run! I must admit that I listened to a total of two songs for the duration of my 3.1 mile run, and I am totally okay with that. These two songs particularly pump me up and keep me going: Titanium (David Guetta), and All Over You (Live). I realize that these two songs are not all that similar, but dang, they make me run my version of fast.

So since the 21 day sugar detox, I have been so significantly better about craving sugar. I think I want something every now and again, but I don’t crave the giant bowl of sugar laden ice cream on an hourly basis like before. However, two days ago I got the most hardcore craving for M n’ M’s I think I have ever had in my life. Even pre-Paleo, I didn’t eat M n’ M’s so it was a tad bit bizarre. However, there I was sitting in my office and I would have probably tackled someone for a bag of those little sweet morsels. It is important to note that by “bag” I am actually referring to the 5 pound bag of them as opposed to the snack or even personal sized. Thankfully my craving passed and I just moved on as if it never happened.

The reason I bring up cravings is because that is precisely how this little recipe formulated in my brain. I was having a major hankering for some Old Bay shrimp. I love me some seafood, and my friend was selling shrimp as a fundraiser for a track team that he coaches. It was awesome…they even had a shrimp hotline. So I bought a pound of shrimp and made this little picturesque concoction for a party 🙂

Shrimp Cucumber Salad

shrimp

Cucumber Salad Portion:

Ingredients:

1 Cucumber
1 Lemon
1 T coarse sea salt
1 t Old Bay

(please note that the above picture was a triple amount of this recipe)

Directions

1. Use your amazing spiralizer that you got for your birthday from your awesome mother to spiral slice the cucumber. If you don’t have one…no worries at all! Just slice up a cucumber. It will taste the same, I promise!

2. Toss in a bowl along with the juice from one lemon, the salt, and the Old Bay.

Shrimp Portion:

Ingredients:

1/2 Lb Shrimp
Old Bay

Directions:

1. Steam shrimp with your desired amount of Old Bay. I typically do an extremely light dusting prior to steaming.

2. Peel shrimp. (Or display them pretty on top of your noodles, take a picture, and then peel them….whatever!)

3. Put them on top of your cucumber noodle salad and do another dusting of Old Bay if desired. It was definitely desired at this house!

So on a side note, Shep did not make it to this party with me. He was home and very sick. So being the thoughtful fiance that I am, I left him an adorable single-serving portion…because I am cheesy like that!

Shrimp heart