Tag Archive for cast iron

Macadamia Nuts, Anyone?




So, I bought some Mahi Mahi last week  Hmmmm.  It was on sale, so that was great!  In fact, it was a fantastic deal!  The problem…I detest cooking fish!  It makes the house smell, it has bones, and as much as I cook, I always manage to destroy it!  My usual downfall is overcooking because I’m afraid of undercooking!  I am not sure what possessed me to purchase this beautiful slab out of the ocean, but I did, so I had to come up with something before my whole house smelled like fish!


Surprisingly, this fish dish was super simple, and it turned out delicious.  I did get an upturned nose when my ten year old walked in the kitchen and smelled the raw fish I was deboning.  At the end of the meal, however, it was all devoured with the kids asking for more.  I had to divy up the end of it so everyone could have second helpings.   Best of all, the house actually smelled like roasted nuts instead of fish.  Double yay!

To make thing even better, I pulled this dish together faster than I can write this post!  I looked up several recipes, and most were very sweet either with added sugar or contained very high fructose fruits like mango and pineapple that do a number on my blood sugar levels.  All the macadamia nut recipes were mixed with flour or breadcrumbs, so I decided to go for it, and see what I could do on my own.  If it hadn’t been 6 pm and a family screaming for dinner, I may have kept scouring the internet, but I’m glad for you and me, that I was short on time because this was simple, delicious, and nutritious.


We always have Macadamia Nuts on hand in the Lutz and Stavros households.  If you don’t; run out and get some (or order here).  They are one of the best nuts you can have around!  They are lower in carbs than most, and much higher in fat than practically all, so they are Keto perfect in my book.  In fact, when we were in Hawaii, I practically lived off of these beauties and have never been in deeper Nutritional Ketosis.  It was fabulous.  When I returned, low and behold, I found this gorgeous purple can of natural wonder in the snack aisle at Costco.  Who would have thought?  Now, I did have a bit of a panic attack when I couldn’t find them for a while, but no worries, they are back!  And…just in case you are wondering, these magnificent nuts contain 24 grams of healthy fat, only 4 grams of carbohydrates, and 1 gram of sugar per quarter cup.


I popped open a can and got to work.  All you need for this tasty Keto fish is Mahi Mahi, Macadamia Nuts, Kerrygold, a food processor, and your grandmother’s cast iron skillet!  Yes, I really do have my grandmother’s old skillet, and it is a beast of a weapon!  If you don’t have your grandmother’s, you can get one here.


Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi Mahi

1 1/2 Pounds Mahi Mahi Cut into Filets

1 Cup Ground Macadamia Nuts (More if you like – You can find some here.)

1/2 Stick KerryGold Butter

Food Processor

Cast Iron Skillet


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cut your Mahi Mahi into filets.  I did different sizes for adults and children, and it cooked just fine.


Debone and remove the skin (I just removed the section of bones with a filet knife from the middle of the filet – the bones are very large given this is a huge fish so they are easy to see and cut out.)

Grind your Macadamia nuts finely in a Food Processor.  I used my mini-Cuisinart, but the large one would have been better.  Fresh Macadamia Nuts are very hard so you need a powerful unit.  This is the newer version of one I have here. Don’t over process or you will get a paste.IMG_2713

I sifted out the fine crumbles and put the larger pieces back in with the next batch.



Start melting your butter in your skillet.


All you have to do, is press your filets of fish into the ground Macadamia Nuts on both sides.  After I had both sides nicely coated, I went back and added the rest to the top of the filets.  You can never have too many Macadamias!


When your butter is sizzling, add all of your filets gently.  I cooked them for 4 minutes on each side, and then moved the whole skillet to a preheated 375 degree oven for 10 minutes and they were perfect!  Please use your oven mitts so you keep your hands to eat!




Serve immediately.  I served them with left over squash casserole and bacon brussels that brought smiles around the table!









Fall in Love with Your Grandmother’s Cookware

Do you remember those black, HEAVY, naturally non-stick, pots and pans your grandmother or mother used every day for cooking? Do you have these relics gathering dust in your cabinet or even garage? If you do, its time to rethink and reconsider Cast-Iron.

Image result for lodge cast iron skillet


I have eliminated many of my non-stick modern pots and pans and moved to cast iron. The set of non-stick I had were very nice when I received them as a set for our wedding. But, in just over 5 years, those pans were starting to show signs of age, with definite scratches and discoloration on the workhorses in the group. So it was time for them to go.


There is nothing wrong with the non-stick pans per se, especially if you are careful with them, and don’t cook at high temperatures. However, studies have found that over very high heat, 400+, some of the non-sticks may release certain chemicals that are toxic and are known to accumulate in humans. This risk is likely small, due to the limited amount of time many of us cook at temps 400+, but the risk is there, and it’s easy enough to avoid. The more obvious risk comes from ingesting the actual coating, which can happen once it is damaged. The damage occurs from the scratching and banging that comes with the regular use in everyday cooking, cleaning, and putting away. Here are a couple articles about non-stick.

Consumer Reports Q&A

EWG-Environmental Working Group Talks Teflon


So why go back to cast iron?


Naturally non-stick. That means no added chemicals (you have already tossed the vegetable oil and Crisco, right?!?) Before using, “season”, your cast-iron, and in the beginning use a bit extra grass fed butter, ghee, or coconut oil when cooking to build up that layer of natural non-stick coating. Once that layer of seasoning is there, you are set-just don’t use soap and wash it off.


Cast-iron can actually add a beneficial nutrient to the foods you cook: Iron. That means instead of the possibility of leeching harmful chemicals, you leech Iron, a nutrient that many of us are running low on already.


Cast-irons really do not have to be babied or coddled. These guys are tough and can handle basically anything you throw at them or in them.  There is no potential of ingesting the chemical coating if you accidentally scratch it, worst case you may have to re-season, maybe.


Cast-iron is a one and done deal, and in the realm of cookware, highly cost efficient. In fact, as long as you take decent care of them, your grand-kids could possibly be using them one day. This means less to buy and even less to toss. Really, what do you do with a non-stick after its scratched?


Cast-iron pots and pans are universal cookware. Stove top to oven is no problem. We have used several of ours on the grill, and there is nothing more traditional than cast-iron on a camp fire. High heat searing is no problem-even frying. Case in point-Cindy used her grand mother’s cast-iron just last week to make Keto Tots! These guys were amazing, and she will be sharing the recipe soon!


It’s simple when you compare cast-iron to non-stick; no added harmful chemicals, sturdy, heats consistently, can go be used anywhere, can add iron to your diet, affordable, and is a built in arm workout. Win!



The best thing to do for your cast-iron is to keep it way from soap, and make sure to dry it before you put it away.  I own several of the “Lodge” brand pans in various sizes.  If you don’t see them in garage or estate sales you can find them them here and here. Lodge Cast Iron has been around way before many of the non-stick chemicals were even created in a lab, 100+ years.



Lodge-care for your cast iron