"Definitely worth the 30 min drive up!"

-Patricia Wang, Diablo CrossFit 

 

 

 



The 7 Sacred Rules at AllStar

At CrossFit AllStar we commit to live the following:

  1. I promise to do my best. My best will vary from day to day, minute to minute. But in that minute I will do my absolute best.
  2. If I can run, I run. If I have to walk, I walk. When I am forced to crawl, I crawl. Then I rest and live to fight another day.
  3. I may struggle, curse and cry but I will never quit.
  4. I will never criticize or beat myself up for what I can't do today. I will just try again tomorrow.
  5. I promise to believe in myself, beginning each workout with the thought that "I can do this!"
  6. I show up to my workouts because I am committed to my health. My commitment to health is an act of self-love.
  7. I acknowledge that my diet is the most important part of my program. The cleaner it is, the better I do.
CrossFit Journal: The Performance-Based Lifestyle Resource

 

Where is CrossFit AllStar? Waimea/Kamuela, Big Island, Hawaii

 

Saturday
Sep222012

9/22/12 Got Munchies? The Great Alternative to Almonds!

Although granted, they are paleo, and a great source of lean protein, I guarantee I will never eat a snail.

This post is about snacks.  

Salty, crispy satisfying by the handful snacks.  Insert here your best Homer Simpson impression ... mmmmm chhhiippps.

For the love of modern cavemen aspiring monkeys everywhere, do not give me another roasted or raw, tamari soaked or sea salt rubbed by virgin monks almond.  I will no longer accept this as my go to option for satisfying my once monthly, and admittedly, totally unreasonable need for salt.  

I want chips.  

Yes chips.  I said it.  Potato chips, tortilla chips...chips, chips, chips.  The English call them crisps, I just call them the ultimate way to satisfy my need for salt and the tuber banned from my paleo aspiring life as refereed to in my previous post.

But lets get real here... this post is sooo not about potato chips. But rather something that, until I tried it, thought it was the most bizarre sounding idea I had ever heard. Right up there with dehydrated seaweed, eewe right? Wrong! Pretty much everyone loves nori. My kids will eat every bit in the house in one sitting if I allow them to.  

This post is about kale.

Green, luscious, full of delectable goodness, that when very slightly altered, turns into a gastronomically wondrous thing.  Crispy, salty and dare I say satisfying to my utterly unreasonable monthy craving.. ... low and behold kale chips are strikingly similar in both apperance and texture to nori, and yes they passed the most stringent of critics, my children.  I am not very good at flat out lying to my kids, they laugh at me and can read my fallacy with humor and laughs that go over like a fart at the dinner table.  Told them I made nori and with a, yeah right your full of it mom look, Aiden replies "What is it really? You can not MAKE seaweed."  Oye. Back step. Turn head to hide my telling face and reply "Well, I did not make the seaweed, duh, but what I made I dried like seaweed, I mean nori..." and with a inspecting eye and twisted brow he popped it in his mouth...."ummm... crunch, crunch, tastes kinda different, kind from store does not taste like bacon."...ah ha, knew I had him.  He loved it, said he wants it in his lunch for snack and that is as good of a review as it gets in my book.

I am a avid supporter of organic farming.  

But for the love of all things wholesome always wash your kale diligently and inspect the curls and dips well, as it is a favorite meal for my greatest garden nemesis and ultra gnarly phobia...snails and slugs.   Get fancy and speak with a French accent if you wish, cook them in butter and garlic and call them escargot, but I still call them NASTY.  Although, granted they are paleo, and a great source of lean protein, I guarantee I will never eat a snail.  Ya wanna see me cry, scream like a B grade actress in a horror flick, put a slug in my path. Swear, I will climb a rope of glass to get away from one.  Anyway, I digress... onto the recipe.

 

Baked Kale Chips

Preheat oven to 350 (all measurements are approximate, use all organic slug free ingredients when possible) 

  • 1 Large bunch kale any variety that you prefer.  I used both curly and the toscano aka 'dinosaur ear'
  • 1-2 Tbsp  Bacon drippings...yummo! Could also use coconut oil, olive oil or nut oil.
  • Kosher or coursley ground sea salt.  Regular table salt can be used but the larger crystals of these two salts adds more than just flavor but also texture.
  • Fresh ground pepper

Tear or cut out the ridged stems from all the leaves.  Rip leaves into 3-4 inch pieces...(no ruler needed here guys) and place into a large bowl. Sprinkle about a 1/4 teaspoon salt and toss. Melt the bacon drippings, and toss well to coat all leaves. Add fresh ground pepper as much or as little as you like.  The first time you make I would err on the conservative side with the salt and pepper as the flavors will condense as the water evaporates in the oven. You can ALWAYS add more when they are finished. Add to much from the start and you have wasted your time and created fancy food for your compost pile.  Bake 10 minutes, then check every 5 after that.  Give a gentle shake and nudge with care any that stick at the 10 minute mark and alternate and flip sheets.   Once they are all crisp, and edges just begin to brown (this took a total of about 15-18 minutes in my oven) turn off heat and leave in the oven to cool and continue dehydrating. What you are looking for is complete dehydration here.  If they have started to get really brown let them cool out of the oven or with the door ajar and adjust your time, and attention : ), the next time. Remove from the oven when cool and super crispy.  Make sure to store them in a air tight container.

 

 

The options for variation are endless.  Garlic, herbs and lemon zest.  Cumin, coriander and chili powder.  A touch of siracha chili paste, nam plah and finely chopped peanuts.  A few sesame seeds and oil and dried squid...really no rules, only what suits you.

 

 

 

 

 

 The original idea for this recipe was taken from Diane Sanfilippo BS, Certified Nutrition Consultant

Saturday
Sep222012

9/21/12 Paleo Muffins

-Added by KC

Gluten-Free, Wheat-Free, Lactose Free Muffins Recipe from Kathy V.

RECIPE: I'll give you the 'official' recipe, then i'll tell you how I modified it to make it what I thought would be yummy and it was.

Paleo Muffins

4 eggs (separated)

1 Apple (grated)

1 Carrot (grated)

1/2 cup Almond Flour

1/2 cup Tapioca Flour

1 tsp. Baking Soda

1 tsp. Baking Powder

Beat egg whites until stiff. Add Yolks one at a time still beating. Mix in with spoon grated Apple & Carrot. Then add the dry ingredients (sifted together first) until all is combined. Don't over mix. Spoon into oiled, 12 cup muffin pan. Bake 375 for 20 minutes. WHAT I DID DIFFERENTLY: I used all coconut flour instead of almond and tapioca. I couldn't beat the egg whites till stiff cause I don't have a beater so I just whisked. I added in unsweetened almond milk cause it was a bit stiff. I also added frozen Marion berries about a cup. I added a bit of maple syrup and cinnamon before baking. THESE ARE SUPER GOOD AND MOIST! I suppose you could substitute the eggs with egg replacer if needed? Enjoy!


Sunday
Jul152012

7/15/12 Potato, Potahtoe....Tomato, Tahmahtoe...

Written by Elin

Things have come to a pretty pass, Our romance is growing flat...Lets call the whole thing off. -George and Ira Gershwin

...no matter how you sing it, potatoes are not optimal eats.

So that is it, my romance with potatoes, I am calling it off. A break up right up there with the guy who broke my heart in high school.  Would I ever go back to that lyin' sack of potatoes? Not just no, but hell no! Will I cheat on my Paleo aspiring self on occasion to have perfectly fried batons of crispy, salty goodness, you can bet you first born on that. Fried, baked, boiled, smashed, mashed, hashed, or fermented my Irish and Polish heritage predisposes me to a visceral reaction to all things spudly, just love 'em.  But as the Gershwins wrote, my romance with them has become flat, uninspired, and just plain empty so it is time I call things off.  Aside from some fiber, assuming you eat the skin, and some trace minerals, potatoes are not much more than fluffy filler on your plate.  I set out to tame the need for a noble replacement to the other worldly spud on our breakfast table and came up with something that I think even the most discerning potato lover will embrace.

Ingredients. Quality matters, period.

Dissertations and books in volume have been written on the absolutes around fresh, quality, organic ingredients, and I agree 100%.  If I asked you which ingredient at right appealed to you more which would you pick?  I hate to assume that it is obvious that the item vibrant in color, robust in smell (where is my Wonka smell-o-vision button) and velvety to the touch would be the ingredient of choice over the dull, flat, and prickly.  If you have only ever cooked with commercially dried herbs and spices an amazing world awaits you.  It is the difference between saddleing up for a work out with a Sussane Sommers thigh master in front of the TV and an epic Hero WOD at the box.  

That being said, perfection is not the goal...

Education is. With education we have the power to compare our options and make better choices.  With each choice we practice. We gain experience and begin to make turns toward mastery.  If frozen is what you got, then frozen is what you use. Try fresh the next time and experience the difference.  Never have time to source farm fresh goods?  Pay attention to labels and make the best choice for you.  All grocery stores have a point of origin on the produce tags that list the price per pound. Try to make a local choice over something shipped from Mexico.  When in doubt ASK.  Make friends with your neighbors working in the produce section and butcher counter, they will hook you up with the freshest shipments or let you know what day deliveries are.... all you have to do is ask.  Fresh, local anything will ALWAYS taste better.  When it tastes better it needs less 'work' to be impressive to the senses.  Less work equals easier, easier equals more time to spend with family, friends, and yourself. To me the most important fact is that it means means you will enjoy it more, feel satiated and content with your nutrition.  Begin to see food as the powerful fuel that keeps you moving forward, and love it.

When you see a * in a recipe this is an indication of a special note of interest, education or opinion that I will add at the end of the recipe.

Hash Brown Potatoes Spaghetti Squash

(what the hell is a spaghetti squash, do I find it in the pasta isle, you ask... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spaghetti_squash)

Ingredients:

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper*
  • 2 tsp oil of choice.  Olive, Butter, coconut**

Method: Cut it in half (lengthwise). Scrape out the seeds and pulp as you would with any squash or pumpkin. Sprinkle each half with ¼ teaspoon salt and a few grinds of fresh black pepper then:

Bake if you have other baking going on.Place rind side up and bake about 30 to 40 minutes

at 375 F until a fork is easily inserted through skin. OR  Boil 20 minutes in a wide bottom stock pot with 2 inches of water until a fork is easily inserted through skin.

  • Remove from oven or pot and cool flesh side down on a wire rack placed over rimmed cookie sheet or towel to catch the juices.
  • Once cool, separate strands by running a fork through the squash in the "from stem to stern" direction into a colander.
  • Place colander into a bowl to further collect juices and place into the refridgerator for a few hours or over night.  Discard any juices that collect.
  • In a large well seasoned cast iron or non stick skillet, heat over medium/high heat, 1 teaspoon of oil for 1 minute.  Add 1/2 of your chilled squash.  Give a few grinds of pepper then add the rest of the squash on top. smooth out so it is even in the pan and push down gently with a spatula to remove some of the air.  Let it cook...DO NOT STIR, FLIP, or otherwise mess with it, for a good 5 minutes.  
  • In the first minute or so, the squash will render a lot of liquid...don't worry! Just leave it.  The juices will evaporate as it cooks, and the carmalization of the natural sugars in the liquid will add to the flavor.  Give pan a little shake every now and again to keep hash from sticking. If using a cast iron skillet a bit more of your chosen oil may be needed to keep it from sticking, this all depends on the level of seasoning in your pan... (worthy of a entire post in and of itself.)
  • Using a spatula lift up the edge and check the level of golden goodness.  Depending on your stove, 5 minutes may be too long, just right or not enough time, you want them a deep golden brown, like, well hash browns.
  • For the advanced, a good swirl and flip and you can get the entire mass flipped over in one movement, if can, do.  For the remaining folks who like to keep their eats in the pan and off the stove top, take the time to turn over the hash browns section by section so that you are looking at the browned bottom, and all the uncooked section is now down.  (Think flipping a pancake) Idea here is to not scramble them all up...yet.
  • Cook another 5 or so minutes on the flipped side until golden.  Turn out onto a plate, give a little fluff with a fork, top with some eggs and bacon and you are good to go.

OPTIONAL ADDITIONS (as pictured above, mmmm... perfection)

A finely chopped hearty green.  Like: kale, chard, spinach  Any variety of minced savories.  Like:  green onion, shallots, onion, garlic.  Any type of meat.  Like left over grilled beast, bacon or sausage.  Heck, all of the above, the more the merrier!  Herbs, like: thyme or parsley.

 

Friday
Jun292012

6/29/12 Introducing ALLSTAR EATS WEB BLOG With Elin!

-Written by Elin

Simple can be joyous.  Low maintenance can be fulfilling.  Decadent need not be difficult.

Where's your head at? Do reading the words 'Nutrition is the Foundation' scare you...

make your heart skip a beat, send you into a physical 'fight or flight' response. Do you equate nutrition with deprivation, view it as an all or nothing proposition?  If so, good then you are in the right place! If not, well you are still in the right place... no matter where you go, there you are right?

Food is no different than mastering your Oly lifts, Handstand Push Ups or any other Crossfit movement.  It takes a desire to show up, to do the work, and practice, practice, practice.  Do to certain injuries some movements may not be available to you, same with food. No matter how good it is for you, maybe kale will just never be available to you because you can't stand it, or maybe you are allergic to eggs. And that's OK.

 

Good food fuels your body, but great food also fuels your spirit.  

It is my hope that by highlighting recipes, either my own or those that I stumble upon in the big bad webosphere, that inspiration, joy and a little education can be found. So we begin the AllStar Eats Recipe Box.

So, who am I?  

Yeah, you thought the question of the day at the box was a mind bender...So here it is, who I am in a nut shell.  I LOVE hard work.  Getting dirty is blissful for me, love it.  100% impractical for my Waimea living self, I aspire to one day own a pair of Christian Louboutin heels, they make me light headed, swoon actually. Yeah, I know, a total juxtaposition of realities. But hey, there ya go that's who I am. A Birkenstock  wearin', Louboutin dreamin, rolling in the dirt with my fresh pedicure kind of girl.

What the hell does the bliss I find in all things dirty and, OK, yes near OBSESSION with totally impractical foot wear have to do with food, eating and cooking you ask?   What is my point here?

Simple can be joyous.  Low maintenance can be fulfilling.  Decadent need not be difficult.

Beautiful and practical need not be mutually exclusive.  You can have it all, if you are willing to get your head in the right place.

Do ya see where I am going with this?

Life is about balance, living in a state of equilibrium with all things in your life.  The decadent and the practical. Nutrition is your foundation, your core. Start a building from a foundation that is not balanced and walls will crack.  Similarly, if your Nutritioinal foundation is weak, you will never know what your full potential could be. 

Think for a moment, of all the ways the day calls upon you for action and reaction.  

Now ask yourself, where, on a list of your top ten priorities, is placing the proper nutrition into your body, and enjoying it?  I am not here to tell you how to eat, to dish out guilt or judgment for the choices you make.  Nor do I have any pie eyed ideas to offer saying that every portion of nutrition you put in your body should be works of creative genius. I am here to help you get your head in the right place.  If you are drinking the Kool-Aid (meaning you have become a CrossFitter for life and want to shout it out from the highest mountain top) you must place a priority on making time, putting forth an effort, and creating a space to practice the creative process of what is good for you on a nutritional level.  

We all walk into the gym with various degrees of performance and athleticism, and that's OK, why are our attitudes about food any different?

Shouldering our various limitations and injuries that we have collected in our life, our abilities may be varied but our heads are all in the same place when we gear up.  Just show up, do you best, and strive toward mastery a little bit everyday. Food that you enjoy, look forward to, feel satiated with and swoon over that creates a solid nutritional foundation is not any different.  

You've made the commitment to workout, now where is your commitment to nutrition?

Sound familiar? Time. Effort. Practice. Swooning...OK, so swooning is not TECHNICALLY part of the CrossFit paradigm, but it should be when it comes to our attitude about food. You've made the choice to change your attitude about fitness, that's why you're here. You are making the time and putting in the effort to master the physical workouts in CrossFit training, and the same needs to be done for your nutritional foundation. For some cooking is easy, for some it is not. But, just like any Crossfit movement some things are just not gonna be available to you. There is no CAN'T, in CrossFit or in the kitchen,  just not today I will try again tomorrow. With practice all things are possible, who knows what your potential can be when you get your head in the right place. 

So how do we do it, build a solid foundation?  Take the time & make the effort.

Eating is a little bit like death, taxes and breathing. It is gonna happen, ya gotta do it.  4 maybe 5 times a day, we are faced with balancing not just our work, family, friends, and all the activity that surrounds us, but we must also balance the sustenance that maintains us. Can it be awkward at first, probably.  Can it be frustrating at times, usually.  Do we have days of less than optimal performance or bad attitudes, inevitably.  There is no wallowing in our bad choices alone in a corner.  You shoe up and try again tomorrow, you share your challenge, gain insight and make a plan to do better. 

  • Take the time and make the effort to make a plan.
  • Take the time and make the effort to prepare what you need for your plan.
  • Take the time and make the effort to follow through in creating what you have planned.

Remember the 3 P's: PLAN, PREP, AND PACK!

Get rid of what does not work for you(the excuses?), embrace and build on that which does.  I sound like a broken record here but just like in the gym, EVERYTHING is scalable.  So step outside the box and into your kitchen as we create a space to share ideas, post recipes, and wax on about all things yummy, optimal, delicious, & easy.

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