Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Butternut Squash Latkes

This is one of the simplest recipes I make, but it is so delicious I had to share it.

Butternut Squash Latkes
1 Butternut Squash
2 Tbsp Onion Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
Fresh cracked Pepper
Coconut Oil for frying

Cook the squash till it is soft. I use my pressure cooker to steam it, but you could bake it, stovetop steam, or whatever other method you use.  Once it is cooked, allow the squash to cool and scoop out.

In a large bowl, mix squash with all remaining ingredients except the coconut oil.  In a heavy bottom skillet, heat coconut oil.
  Once oil is hot, scoop squash mixture into small pancakes in the oil.
Allow the squash to cook till it become crispy and brown on the first side (5-7 minutes) and carefully flip.
Allow squash to cook for additional 5 minutes or so until it is crispy again.  Add additional salt if you want while the pancakes are still hot.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Chocolate Covered Pecan Pie Balls

I made these for a Thanksgiving Dinner we attended with extended family.  They were a great treat for me to bring for everyone to enjoy, and give myself an option without having to deal with the gluten in pie.  We were not particularly concerned with what we would be eating that day, as it was important for us not to make the host family go out of there way at all; though we did try to avoid the blatantly gluten dishes. I was able to eat turkey, sweet potatoes (I dug a bit underneath to stay away from the marshmallow, though I am sure there was sugar in there), green beans (not the casserole kind) and brussel sprouts with cashews. Everything was delicious, and I am so blessed we had family to spend the holidays will when we are so far from our real home!

Chocolate Covered Pecan Pie Balls
1/2 C Date Paste
1 C Pecans
1/2 C Coconut Oil- Melted
1 Tbsp Maple Syrup
1 C Almond Flour
4 oz Dark Chocolate

Melt the coconut oil.  Chop the pecans till about pebble size, but not quite flour.
 Combine all the ingredients except the chocolate in a large bowl. (At this point you may want to taste and adjust it to your liking. This is when I added the bit of maple syrup because I knew they would be for a non-Paleo crowd, but if I were making it for the family I would have left it out.)
Using two spoons (the mixture will be sticky, so I wouldn't try to use your hands) spoon the mixture into Tbsp size balls onto a freezer safe dish. (They don't need to be perfectly round at this point.)
Place in the freezer for about 15 minutes. While they are in the freezer, melt the chocolaate over a double boiler or in the microwave.  Remove the balls from the freezer and roll them into more perfect balls, as they will now be less sticky.  Dip each ball into the melted chocolate and allow them to set up.
Serve and enjoy!
And this is what it looks like when the cutest 21 month old steals a square of the chocolate during the process ;)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Paleo 'Corn' Muffins

I was faced with a bit of a challenge this week. My daughter has a 'Thanksgiving Feast' at her preschool tomorrow, and unfortunately the menu is very difficult for a gluten-free child to eat around! While there will be turkey and fruit, all the other items (gravy, trail mix w/ pretzels, box corn muffins, traditional pie) contain gluten.
So, after talking to the teacher, we decided I would tackle the menu for the handful of gluten-intolerant kids at the school. This is the corn muffins I came up with, and I must say, they are really really good. I already know my hubby is going to go after them with the jar of honey when he gets home from work! I'm also thinking these would be great in a cornbread stuffing!

Paleo 'Corn' Muffins
1/3 C Coconut Flour
1/3 C Almond Flour
2 Tbsp Arrowroot Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
6 Eggs
1/2 C Melted Butter

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, crack eggs and whisk till fluffy.
Pour eggs into the dry ingredients and stir to combine.  Melt butter and stir into prepared batter.
 Scoop into greased muffin tins and place in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes.
These would be great served plain, with some honey, in a 'cornbread' stuffing, or as the bread in a breakfast sandwich. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Spicy Paleo Chili

Spicy Paleo Chili
2-3 lb beef roast- trimmed and cubed
1 lb spicy sausage
3 Celery Stalks- chopped
1/2 Chopped Onion
Avocado Oil- for browning beef
30 oz Tomato Sauce (2 cans)
3 Tbsp Onion Powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp Cumin
2-4 Tbsp Chili Powder
1 Tbsp Paprika

Brown cubed beef, sausage, onion and celery in Avocado oil.
 (My pressure cooker has a 'BROWN' and 'SLOW COOK' option, so I can do it all in the same pot, but you could do the first step on the stove top and transfer it to the slow cooker.)

 Once all the meat is browned, add in remaining ingredients and stir well.

Allow chili to slow cook all day (6-8hrs) and enjoy with the toppings of your choice (avocado, cheese, chives, sweet onion, sour cream, hot sauce, olives, ect.).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Creamy Dijon Chicken and Veggies

I've stated before, we do quality dairy on occasion. This is a good example of a once a month or so dish that we have. For me, this mimics the creamy pasta dishes of the past, and it is a nice comfort food after a couple stressful days! I'm not really an emotional eater, but I do love a creamy, homey feeling dish when I am under a lot of stress.

Creamy Dijon Chicken and Veggies
2 Chicken Breasts
2 Tbsp Oil
2 C Chicken Stock
2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
1/2 C Whipping Cream
4 oz Mushroom
1 C Carrots
1 C Beet Greens
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a heavy bottom skillet, cook salted and peppered chicken breasts in oil.
While it is cooking, chop carrots, mushrooms, and beet greens.
Once chicken is cooked through, remove from pan and set aside.
Add chicken stock and carrots to the pan and allow it to reduce by about 1/2.
Once reduced, add in cream, mustard and remaining veggies.
 Add in chicken breast and allow chicken and veggies to heat through.
 Serve plain or over spaghetti squash. Enjoy!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Avocado Chicken Salad

This is my favorite chicken salad recipe. I love the bit of sweet you get from the dried cranberries,the crunch of the celery, and the creaminess of the avocado is perfect. I do this combination on a lettuce wrap for lunch, or bulk it up with a bunch of veggies on a spinach salad. Enjoy!

Avocado Chicken Salad
4 Cooked Chicken Breasts
2 Ripe Avocados
1 Stalk of Celery
1/2 C Dried Cranberries
1/4 C Avocado Oil
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
Salt and Pepper to taste

Dice chicken breast and avocado into bite size pieces and chop celery into very small dice.
  In a large bowl, combine diced avocado, chicken and dried cranberries.
 Add in avocado oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. The avocado will naturally mush down a bit while combining, but still leave some good size chunks.
 Eat immediately on a salad, plain, or in a lettuce wrap, or allow the salad to sit overnight for a better depth of flavor. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Bacon Deviled Eggs

This is one of my go-to recipes for any kind of entertaining, because really, who doesn't love bacon and deviled eggs? Combine those two elements with the best tasting Mayonnaise EVER and what more could you ask for? Mmm... I hope you will try these for the upcoming holiday parties!

Bacon Deviled Eggs
1 Dozen Hard Boiled Eggs
1/2 C Avocado Mayonnaise
1/2 Tsp Prepared Mustard
4 Slices Crispy Bacon
1/4 C Green Onion- thinly sliced
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cut hard boiled eggs in half and separate whites and yolks.
  Into the bowl with the yolks, add remaining ingredients. Stir well until all ingredients are evenly incorporated.
Using a spoon, or a piping bag, fill egg white holes with the prepared yolk mixture.  Sprinkle extra crispy bacon and green onion on prepared eggs and serve!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Avocado Mayonnaise

I have received quite a few questions in the past about what Mayonnaise I use. I decided to do a quick run through of it before I post the recipe for my Bacon-Deviled Eggs as I think the Mayonnaise used in that recipe is essential in these eggs being over the top. I hope you enjoy!

*Please Note: I make mine by hand but PLEASE, if you have a food processor, use it. Or, you can enjoy the tingling in your arm for the remainder of the evening, like me! *

Avocado Mayonnaise 
1 Egg+ 1 Yolk
1 Tsp Prepared Yellow Mustard
Dash of Salt
1 1/2 C Avocado Oil
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Whisk together eggs, mustard and salt till they become slightly frothy.  Begin streaming in avocado oil in a very small stream while whisking vigorously.
Continue streaming in oil until all is incorporated. This should take you about 5-8 minutes, but should feel like an hour.
Whisk in lemon juice and enjoy!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Coconut-Raisin Bars

We almost always have a variation of this recipe in the freezer. They are great as snacks for the kids, a little treat for me... they are delicious and above all, a great nutrition alternative to prepackaged bars. This is the first time I have measured, I usually throw in a combination of what is in the cabinet, so feel free to change it up with what you like. The key is really to get the right amount of liquid (coconut oil and honey/maple syrup) to dry ingredient, and to really pack them into the pan tight. Aside from that, you can't mess these up!

Coconut-Raisin Bars
2 2/3 C Unsweetened Fine Shred Coconut
1/3 C Almond Flour
1 C Flax Seed Meal
2 Tbsp Cinnamon
1 C Raisins
1 1/4 C Coconut Oil
1/4 C Raw Honey

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
 In a small sauce pan heat coconut oil and honey and allow them to melt. You don't need it to boil, just warm enough to melt.
 Pour melted oil/honey into dry mixture and stir to combine. You want a wet sand like consistency. *Taste at this point to determine if you want more Cinnamon, more honey, ect.*
 Pour mixture into a parchment paper lined 8X8 Pyrex.
Cover with more parchment paper and press the mixture down. *Really make sure this is packed solid.*
Place mixture in the freezer for a couple hours.
Once frozen, remove and cut with a heavy knife.
Store in the refrigerator. Enjoy!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Chicken 'Noodle' Soup

This was my 'use it up' recipe for the week. We had a whole roast chicken earlier in the week, so I used the carcass and some veggies to make a nice stock, and the leftover chicken from it for the meat. The broccoli slaw makes great 'noodles' because it keeps a good texture while still absorbing a lot of the flavor from the stock. My husband hates the flavor of broccoli slaw, but he loved this soup. It was a perfect meal to come home from church to on a crisp day. Mmmm, my house smelled amazing, and we are still enjoying the leftovers!

Chicken 'Noodle' Soup
6 C Chicken Stock (preferably homemade)
2 C Water
3 C  Chopped Chicken, precooked
1 12 oz bag Broccoli Slaw
Salt and pepper to taste
Anything else you like in Chicken Soup. I threw in leftover asparagus we had in the fridge.

Place all ingredients in the slow-cooker and let simmer on low for 6 hours or on high for 4. Enjoy!

Salted Caramel Apple Pie

This recipe is a little more time consuming and step intensive than my normal recipes, but it is one I have been working on for the holidays. It is a classic that I have always loved, and the Paleo version did not disappoint! Again, not an everyday, but for the holidays this is a great way to treat without the grains/gluten and refined sugars. 

Salted Caramel Apple Pie
6 Medium Apples- I used Braeburn
1/4 C Lemon Juice

Apple Spices:
    3 Tbsp Coconut Flour
   1 Tsp Cinnamon
   1/2 Tsp Nutmeg
   1/4 Tsp Ginger

Salted Caramel:
   3/4 C Maple Syrup
   1/4 C Water
   4 oz Butter
   3/4 Tsp Very Fine Ground Sea Salt
   1/4 C Full Fat Coconut Milk

Your Favorite Paleo Pie Crust (I used THIS ONE)

Peel and thinly slice apples.
Make them as thin as you can... a mandolin would work great for this! Toss the chopped apples in the lemon juice to prevent discoloring and add a tartness. In a small bowl, mix together the apple spices.
Toss sliced apples in apple spices and set aside.

Begin preparing salted caramel by combining maple syrup, water and butter in a small saucepan.
 Allow butter to melt over medium high and mixture to begin to bubble.
 Allow mixture to continue to cook til lit reaches a rich caramel color and consistency. When you run a spoon through the mix, it should take a second to fold back to where it was, if that makes sense. Once it reaches this point, removed from heat and add in coconut milk and salt.
Make sure your salt is a very fine grind or it may not disperse properly.

Now you are ready to assemble. Start by placing your pie crust into the pie plate. Now begin by layering about 1/3 of the prepared apples into the crust.
Top with about 1/3 of the caramel mix. Continue with another 1/3 of each, and then the final 1/3 of each. Top with prepared crust. I chose to sprinkle pieces of crust over mine as I had a 3 year old helping me, and that was a fun/easy step for her to do!

In a 375 preheated oven, bake for 20 minutes before lowering temperature to 350 for an additional 25-30 minutes.
Allow pie to cool completely before serving. Enjoy