Before heading home to L.A. last Sunday night, the BF and I met up with his parents for an intense 7 mile hike in Mount Tamalpais State Park, about 45 minutes from the city.
After a particularly scrumptious breakfast the day before, I was not as excited to start my day off with an egg sandwich from Noah’s bagels that morning, but we needed to get up, out and on the road. Lucky for me though, I was in store for a culinary treat.
My BF’s mom Donna had packed The Mother of All Picnics for our pre-hike fuel session. She brought protein bars, trail mix, fresh homegrown nectarines and tomatoes, Popchips and homemade guacamole. But that’s not all.
Thinking I was still avoiding wheat (sorry Donna), she specially made us brown-rice cookies and gluten-free chicken patties! Despite my return to the dark side (of bread that is), they were both amazing.
I downed two patties and two cookies in a matter of seconds stuffing one more of each in a plastic baggy for the road. Hey, you never know what can happen out there in the wilderness, you got to be prepared for the long haul.
After raving about the patties, Donna graciously offered to share her recipe with me. These babies are high in protein, low in calories and fat, low-carb and gluten free. But before we dive into that, check out this amazing hike we went on:
The Matt Davis-Steep Ravine Loop is the perfect trail for a challenging but not impossible long hike.
Like I mentioned before, it’s 7.3 miles and takes from 3-4 hours to complete it. We were spending time catching up with the BF’s parents and taking a lot of pictures, so it took us four.
The trail starts at either the ranger’s station or Stinson Beach. This article gives a great overview of your options and directions to get there.
We started at the ranger’s station and spent about four miles traversing down toward the beach. The trail features beautiful views of the California coastline and tons of bright poppys, the state flower.
But the lush, peaceful forest kept us cool on the hike back and provided some awesome photo ops.
I would definitely try this hike again the next time I’m back in the Sf area, and try to factor in some a beach break half way.
Ok, so now we can get to the fun part…chicken patties!
Donna’s Protein Packed Chicken Patties
2 lbs of ground, skinless chicken breasts
4 small slices of gluten free bread
3/4 medium size red onion
1c. fresh parsley
1/2 c. fresh cilantro
1t. sea salt
1t. garlic salt
1/2 t. poultry seasoning
1/2 t. turmeric
small bottle of saffron from Trader Joe’s (about .02 oz.)
1. Grind up the bread in a food processor and add to the chicken in a large bowl.
2. Grind up the onion in the food processor. Add parsley and cilantro and process. Add eggs and all the spices, except the saffron, and process.
3. Place saffron in a small microwaveable bowl (like a custard cup). Use kitchen sheers to gently cut the strands into small pieces. Add 2 T. water to the saffron and microwave for 30 seconds, watching to make sure the saffron water does not boil over. You are just trying to heat the water. It doesn’t have to boil.
4. Add the saffron and water to the food processor and mix again.
5. Pour the mixture over the chicken and bread crumbs and mix well with a large spoon.
6. Form the patties any size you want. Heat up a panini grill or skillet and spray with oil. Cook until done, 5-10 minutes, flipping once. The cooking time will vary depending upon the thickness of the patties and the type of pan used. You may need to respray more oil after each batch that you cook.
Total Calories: 100, 12 servings.
Thank you so much to my BF’s mom Donna for sharing her delicious recipe!
If you’re looking for a hike this weekend and you’re in the L.A. area, here are some of my favorite local spots: