Sunday, October 31, 2010

Pumpkin Bars - To Die For

It's Halloween and I am a complete sucker for two things: candy corn and pumpkin anything. Since I highly doubt I'll be able to modify a candy corn recipe to make it Paleo, I decided to try the next best thing and make some pumpkin bars. Thanks to, I was able to make them Paleo-friendly and absolutely delicious. I found they are even better the next day. Best of all, they are super easy to make.


1/2 cup pumpkin puree (I used Libby's)
1/2 cup agave nectar (this is where I modified the original recipe. I used raw, unfiltered honey instead)
2 eggs
1 cup blanched almond flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (I used 1/2 teaspoon because I heart cinnamon)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves


In a food processor, combine pumpkin, honey (or agave) and eggs. Pulse for 2 minutes (I'm lazy, so I just let it blend for about 30 seconds, then pulsed it a bit to make sure it was well blended).

Pulse dry ingredients into wet for a full minute, until well combined.

Pour batter into a greased 8x8 baking dish and bake at 350 F for 30-35 minutes.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Mango Avocado Salsa


1 large, ripe mango
1 ripe avocado
1/2 yellow onion
Lime juice
Fresh cilantro
Sea Salt


Peel and chop mango and avocado into 1/2 inch cubes. Finely chop onion and cilantro. Mix above ingredients and sprinkle with lime juice and sea salt to taste. Pairs great with any fish and dry white wine, of course.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Carmelized Brussel's Sprouts

Brussel's sprouts are in season and I'm obsessed with them right now. Seriously, cannot get enough of the little guys. I can eat them just steamed with no seasoning, but this dish is absolutely delightful!


1 package Steam Fresh Brussel's Sprouts
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 TBSP butter (grass-fed)
sea salt
2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
3 TBSP agave nectar or honey


Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add sliced onions, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, and saute until soft and golden. Mix vinegar and agave nectar. Stir in with onions and cook about 3 minutes, or until onions are brown and glazed.

Steam Brussel's sprouts in microwave. Combine with carmelized onions and heat through, about 3-4 minutes.

Best Salmon Evvvvaaaa!!!

I adapted a chicken recipe from (Spiced Honey Lemon Chicken). Not only did it turn out fabulous, but may very well be my favorite salmon marinade ever. There are a couple of questionable ingredients (butter and honey), but not enough to kill you.


2 large salmon fillets
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp pepper
4 tsp olive oil
1 TBSP grass-fed butter, melted
3 TBSP unfiltered, raw honey
zest and juice of 1 lemon (I didn't have any fresh lemons, so used 2 TBSP Real Lemon)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground garam masala (original recipe called for cumin, I ran out)
2 tsp paprika


Combine all ingredients in small bowl, then pour over salmon. Marinate for a minimum of 1 hour in the refrigerator. I marinated mine for 1 hour tonight, but saved a third salmon fillet and am marinating that overnight to see how much better it might be.

Heat oven to 400 F. Line baking dish with foil and place salmon over foil. Broil at 400 for 20-30 mins, depending on thickness of fillets. Cook just until fish is opaque throughout and juices run clear. Then turn oven up to 500 F and broil an additional 5 mins. Watch to ensure marinade does not burn.

Serve with Carmelized Brussel's Sprouts.

Pomegranate Pork Chops

I decided to get creative last night. For some reason, Sunday is my day for culinary creativity. Well yesterday I had zero desire to hit up the grocery store, so I had to be creative with what I already had. I had also forgotten to thaw any meat and I have an aversion to the defrost setting on the microwave (don't ask why, I have no logical answer; it just freaks me out). What I did have thawed was two super thick pork chops. I don't cook pork much (save bacon), so my creativity was really being tested. I would say I passed the test with a B...flavor is good, preparation is easy, but not the greatest thing I've ever made. You may be the judge if you like.


4 thin Pork Chops (or fillet two thick pork chops so you have about 1/2" thickness)
1/4 C Olive Oil
2 TBSP Apple Cider Vinegar
1 TBSP Balsamic Vinegar
2 TBSP Garlic, minced or chopped
1/2 tsp Thyme
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 C Pomegranate Seeds
1/4 C chopped Pecans


Combine all ingredients, except pomegranate seeds, in large ziplock bag and marinate for 30 minutes.

Heat large skillet on low-medium. Place contents of ziplock in skillet and cook 5-6 minutes each side, or watch for edges of pork chops to turn white, then flip.

Top cooked pork chops with pomegranate seeds and pecans. I served this with spiced Brussels sprouts and it was a great combination!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Paleo Crock Pot Green Chili


2 lbs Pork Roast, in 1" cubes (sub chicken if you like)
1 lb Tomatillos, husked and halved
2 onions, I used 1 red onion, 1 yellow onion, chopped
3 jalapenos, halved with seeds and stems removed
4 cloves garlic
5-6 cups chicken broth
Olive Oil
Fresh cilantro, chopped
Sea salt


Combine tomatillos, onions, jalapenos, and garlic in large bowl and coat with olive oil. Line baking sheet with foil and spread mixture evenly. Roast for about 20 mins, stirring two or three times.

Meanwhile, heat 2-3 TBSP olive oil in large skillet. Brown pork or chicken, but do not cook through.

Place all ingredients in large Crock Pot and cook on low for 8+ hours.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Stuffed Sweet Acorn Squash

Another great one from Whole9. I wanted to make something festive and this turned out amazing. Even the kiddos thought it was great. I will definitely make again and again (probably until the whole family is so sick of it they cannot stand to look at acorn squash).

Copied from the Whole9 Blog:

Steal This Meal: Stuffed Sweet Acorn Squash

Ingredients (serves 2)

1 acorn squash
1 pound grass-fed, organic ground beef (ground turkey would work, too)
1 chopped onion
1 finely-chopped apple (we used a Braeburn, but find something local-ish)
½ cup dried chopped cranberries
¼ cup chopped pecans
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp oregano
½ tsp sage
unrefined coconut oil
salt, pepper
These reminded us of good Thanksgiving food. Even though it was made with beef, it was reminiscent of Thanksgiving turkey with the herbs. We’ll actually try this with ground turkey again at some point.

Fresh fall ingredients make for a sweet Steal This Meal.


Preheat the oven to ~400 degrees.
Cut the acorn squash in half, and scoop out the seeds and any stringy stuff.
Place the squash cut side up in a large baking pan, and put a tablespoon of water into each “cup”, and pour ¼ cup of water into the bottom of the pan.
Loosely “tent” the pan with aluminum foil, and bake for 30-35 minutes.
While squash is baking, chop the onion, apple, pecans and cranberries.
Saute the beef and onion in a little coconut oil for 2-3 minutes, then add apples, pecans, cranberries, and herbs. Add salt and pepper. Do not completely cook this mixture.
Pull squash out of the oven, spoon the mixture into the “cups” (heaped to overflowing is okay).
Bake uncovered for another 15-20 minutes.
We added a simple arugula and watercress salad with lemon-basil vinaigrette, but any green veggie would do as a side.

Serve with a fresh green salad and enjoy.

Tropical-ish Ahi Tuna Tacos

I accidentally made this for lunch today and it turned out soooooo good! If you make extra pico, it goes great over eggs the next morning!


Large Ahi tuna filet
2 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP minced garlic
2 TBSP lemon juice
sea salt (optional)
black pepper (optional)
Fresh lettuce leaves
Ripe mango
Fresh Pico de gallo (see recipe below)


Preheat oven to 350. Place tuna filet in large piece of foil and on baking sheet. Rub with olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Fold foil over and bake for 20-30 minutes (until tuna is opaque).

While baking, prepare lettuce leaves (I prefer "living lettuce"). Slice avocado and mango and set aside. Prepare pico de gallo.

When fish is cooked, separate into small pieces. Use lettuce as taco shell/wrap. Place a few pieces of fish, sliced avocado, mango, and top with pico de gallo. Yum!

Pico de Gallo


2 large, ripe, red tomoto (or 4-5 small roma tomatoes)
1/2 yellow or white onion
1-2 jalepenos, chopped
Chopped fresh cilantro, to taste
1/2 TBSP olive oil
1 tsp course sea salt, or to taste


Chop tomato and remove seeds and pulp. Finely chop onion, jalepenos (remove seeds to minimize heat), and cilantro. Mix all ingredients and enjoy!

Cortisol - REGULATORS! Mount up!

First off, if you don't own Robb Wolf's, The Paleo Solution, you are behind the times and need to order it asap. Not only is he hysterical in a nerdy kind of way (which in my book makes him totally hawt - we could get down and dirty and talk science...rawrrr), but the guy is pure genius and has an innate ability to educate Joe Schmo on hormones and how our bodies respond to what we do or do not put in them. Buy it; you won't regret it.

Next, I want to tell you why I'm obsessed with cortisol as of late. Yes, I claim to be working hard at being healthy and doing what is best for my body, but then I drink 4 bottles of vino and stay up into the wee hours of the morning (not pointing fingers ladies, just sayin'). Then what do I do? Drink a pot of coffee, complain about looking like I'm forty when I'm only thirty, spend the day running around like a maniac, then go home and gear up for another night out. What does Sunday look like? Repeat the above. What does this mean for my body? It means I don't sleep and my body releases cortisol; it means I drink caffeine like it's going out of style and my body releases cortisol; it means I forget to care what I eat because I'm so tired and my body gets stressed and releases cortisol. Why does this matter? Because, while cortisol is great in small doses, large doses jack you up (for lack of a technical term).

And here's the brief, minus all the sciency stuff that bores most people to tears (even though that is my favorite part): prolonged increases in cortisol, brought on by stress, caffiene, and lack of sleep cause a myriad of health issues. We're talking big issues here, folks. Decreased muscle and bone density, memory loss, high blood pressure, immune deficiency, and flabby bellies to name a few.

So, stop stressing your body out. Eat clean, sleep long and well, exercise (using varied, functional movements...CHEESE!), lay off the espresso (some is okay, just don't use it as your primary fuel), and SLOW DOWN! Your body will thank you for it.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Paleo Pizza


1 C almond flour/meal
3 TBSP cashew butter (or other nut butter of your choice)
1/3 C egg whites

Preheat oven to 250. Beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Add in almond flour and nut butter and mix thoroughly. Grease baking sheet with olive oil and flatten dough until about 1/4" thick. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and load with your favorite toppings.

Recommended toppings:

Pesto/olive oil sauce
Chopped onion
Baby spinach
Chicken breast
Black olives
Artichoke hearts
Zucchini slices

I cooked the chicken and sauteed the veggies in olive oil until just tender. Load up the pizza and bake for another 10 minutes or until done. The dough will be crisp, more like a cracker crust than soft dough.

Mama's Perfect Pork Chops

This recipe came from via Jamie Kimberlin. I haven't made it yet, but Jamie told me it was fantastical and, quite frankly, she's usually right. I will make it tonight and if it sucks, will remove it tomorrow (just kidding!) I know it will be scrumptious; can't wait to taste test it!

Mama's Perfect Pork Chops (based on recipe from


2 thick cut boneless pork chops (1-1/2in thick if possible)
a few splashes of balsamic vinegar
1-2TB of evoo
2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed
salt and pepper
1-2tsp fresh thyme or something of that sort
1TB ghee, or butter, or bacon fat


-mix vinegar,evoo,garlic,and thyme together in a bowl. salt and pepper pork chops and put in a ziplock with the marinade for 30mins

-when ready, heat cast iron skillet or sauté pan on medium high, when hot add cooking fat to coat the bottom of the pan

-take chops out of marinade and sprinkle each side with a bit of paprika. place in hot pan- make sure there is plenty of space b/t them

-brown pork chops for about 5-6 mins on first side without moving them.

-when it is time to flip, if you are using a cast iron pan, you can turn off the heat and cover the pan once you flip them. the pan holds enough heat to sear and cook the chops after the heat is turned off. mine were very thick so I kept the heat on low for about another 5-7 minutes to cook them and then turned it off. 140 degrees was perfection for me on these.

-served with Jen's Mediterranean asparagus, absolutely MAGIC people.

Here is the real Mama's recipe, I haven't tried the rub since I had zero time for that shiz. looks delish though.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Paleo Brownies

These are pretty delightful. They will be flatter than normal brownies, unless you add non-paleo baking powder. I've made several variations of this, and this seems to be the best. You could also try whipping some egg whites to form stiff peaks in place of baking powder to see if that helps fluff up the brownies. Any way, they are still tasty and satisfying!


1/2 C Coconut Oil
6 TBSP Raw Unfiltered Honey
2 Eggs
1/2 C Almond Flour
1/3 C Cocoa Powder


Preheat oven to 350

Melt coconut oil in small saucepan over low heat. Add honey and blend. Remove from heat and let stand a few minutes to cool.

In medium mixing bowl, beat eggs. Mix in oil and honey. Slowly add cocoa powder and almond flour. Mix thoroughly.

Line 8x8 baking pan with parchment paper. Pour mixture over paper and bake 20 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Sauteed Sea Scallops


1 lb wild caught large sea scallops
1/4 C coconut oil
lemon juice


Rinse and pat dry sea scallops. Heat coconut oil in large skillet over low-medium heat. Once fully melted, arrange scallops in skillet and cook until lightly browned (about 4-5 mins). Turn and cook another 4-5 minutes on the other side. Remove from oil and drizzle with lemon juice.

Mediterranean Asparagus


1 Bunch of Asparagus
1/4 C Olive Oil
1 TBSP Minced Garlic
1/2 C Cherry or Grape Tomatoes, halved
1/4 C Calamata Olives, chopped


Preheat oven to 350. Cut woody ends from asparagus. Mix all ingredients in medium sized bowl. Line baking sheet with foil. Spread asparagus evenly on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Sweet Potato Chews

This came in an email from Whole 9. These are absolutely delicious. I made them last night and will definitely make them again.

Post-Workout Sweet Potato Chews

Cast of Characters:

Sweet potatoes. I thought these were yams, but apparently they are sweet potatoes. Whatever, I don’t really care. Just get the orange ones. The yellow ones don’t survive being baked and cooked.

Cinnamon. I’ve read that it improves insulin sensitivity. It’s also delicious.

Coconut oil. It imparts a subtle coconut taste that rounds out the flavor of the sweet potato in a truly marvelous way.

Now Do This:

First, you have to bake the sweet potatoes, so preheat oven to 325.
Spread a piece of aluminum foil on a middle rack and bake as many as you can fit for about an hour. You want them soft, so the skins easily pull away from the sides.
After baking, let them cool in the oven until it’s convenient to move on to the next step. Sitting in the oven overnight is fine, in fact.
Now you have to peel them. If you baked them long enough, you should be able to get most of the peel off with your fingers. Use a knife for any stubborn bits.

This will make MANY pans of sweet potato chews.

Next, you need to slice them and arrange them on a baking sheet. You can use a pan liner (like Silpat) to make removal of the finished product easier.
Cut them about 1/2 a centimeter thick. You want a uniform thickness if possible, and I find 1/2 cm gives me enough potato to keep it from becoming a mess when I transfer pieces to the pan.
Arrange them flat side up.
Now, melt your coconut oil and paint on your potato slices using a pastry brush.
Give a healthy dusting of cinnamon (I really load up).
Then back to the oven it goes for the “drying”. Cooking at 350 for 50 minutes brings about half the pan to an acceptable level. They sizzle nicely under the high heat.
Usually, I’ll remove the done ones and throw the pan back in for another 10 minutes and that produces pretty good results. I’ve also done 300 degrees and 90 minutes. That works pretty well too and is more forgiving, meaning less crispy pieces. You may have to experiment a bit. If you go too long or too hot, you will have sweet potato crisps. Not bad, but I prefer the chewy consistency of soft dried fruit.
Partition slices into perfect PWO portions and pack them in Ziploc bags or covered glass storage containers. (I don’t know how long they keep because we’ve never had a batch last longer than a couple days.) Enjoy!