Favorite Paleo CookBooks

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I have a small cookbook problem. My husband might argue that I have a LARGE cookbook problem. But I honestly use most of my cookbooks for a variety of things.

Want to make something like beignet? Need a recipe to start from to “paleo-ify”? The Joy of Cooking has a recipe for almost anything.

Want some creative, interesting vegetable side-dishes? I love The Farmer’s Kitchen, and From Asparagus to Zucchini.

But now that I follow a Paleo diet with some modifications (more about this in a future post), I am drawn to “Paleo” cookbooks. The five shown below are my favorites …

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Well Fed by Melissa Joulwan

If you are a foodie and like interesting spice combinations then this is the book for you! Melissa also goes into detail on how to do a weekly cook up to ease some of your kitchen time. Love love love this book. Favorite recipes: Sunshine Sauce, Citrus Carnitas, and Garlic-Lime Shrimp.

Sweet Potato Power by Ashely Tudor

This is the book that got me realizing that “one size does not fit all” when it comes to dietary tolerance. This shouldn’t have been a newsflash, but for some reason it was. Don’t be afraid to experiment on yourself … yes, N=1, but if you are trying to figure things out about your health, it is the only experiment that matters! Plus it has lots and lots of yummy sweet potato recipes. In ways you would have never thought of. My absolute favorite is the Sweet Potato Linguine with Sage and Brown Butter Sauce.

The Food Lovers Make it Paleo by Bill Staley and Hayley Mason

Bill and Hayley have a great cookbook full of recipes designed to please just about every palate. Not so fancy that you couldn’t serve it to your family on a weeknight, but delicious enough that your family will think you are spoiling them. And this is my go-to book for Paleo treats. My favorites are the Chocolate Chip Cookies, Infamous Bacon Cookies, Dark Chocolate Cake, and Carrot Cake.

Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo

I waited a long time for this book to come out! Several years ago when I was first investigating the Paleo diet, I had a brief phone consultation with Diane. After explaining my history and ongoing issues, she immediately said that I needed to follow the Auto-Immune Protocol. I was still trying to wrap my head around the basics of the Paleo diet, so the thought of following AIP was more than I could process at the time. Unfortunately, she was over-booked and wasn’t able to take me on as a client. Now several years later, I realize that she was right, I should have started with AIP then! This book is amazing in how it lays out the material … it has special sections based upon your goals along with supplement suggestions and meal plans. The recipes are all tagged as to different dietary needs (FODMAPS, NIGHTSHADES, EGGS, etc) with suggested modifications if appropriate. I absolutely love the spice mixes (Italian Sausage, Chorizo, Indian), and the other “basics” like herbal-tea infused gelatin cubes (grown up jello!), clarified butter/ghee, bone broth, and baked bacon! Cumin-Spiced Pork Tenderloin has become a family favorite.

Paleo Comfort Foods by Julie & Charles Mayfield

This is the first “Paleo” cookbook I bought, and it is the one I credit with getting me excited about the possibilities of Paleo cooking. Several of the recipes have become my “go to” recipes for potlucks or guests. Maryland Crab Cakes with Chipotle Dipping Sauce. Brussels Sprout Slaw. Basic Biscuits. Scattered, Smothered, and Chunked Sweet Hash. Pesto Spaghetti Squash. Turkey Loafing. Strawberry Shortcakes.

There are two other books that I have on pre-order that I am super-excited about …

Gather, The Art of Paleo Entertaining by Bill Staley and Hayley Mason

And Beyond Bacon by Stacy Toth and Matthew McCarry

 

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Tuna Burgers

Since I don’t eat beef (severe allergy), and I get sick of turkey burgers, I came up with this easy recipe for tuna burgers.  Great for a summer meal with a nice salad.

Ingredients

2 lbs of fresh tuna steaks

4 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 inches of fresh ginger, grated (I love my Microplane grater!)

4 Tbs of Coconut Aminos

4 scallions, chopped

1 red pepper, roasted, diced

1 Tbs Red Boat fish sauce

2 tsp of freshly ground black pepper

 

I used a meat grinder to grind my tuna (attachment on my KitchenAid stand mixer), but you could also chop finely by hand, or use a food processor.

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Add the remaining ingredients, and mix.

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Form into patties.

Grill.

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Enjoy.

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Home-made Sausage Patties

So, I have a friend who makes homemade sausage patties all the time, and they are so delicious.  I’ve always wanted to make them, since that way you get to control what goes into them, but it seemed too complicated.  She assured me it wasn’t, but I was hesitant for a long time.

Eventually that ended and now I make them all the time.  Sometimes I don’t even make patties, I just cook it up as ground meat.

  • 1 pound of ground turkey, chicken, lamb or pork (or combination thereof)
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of dried sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground fennel
  • 1/8 teaspoon of ground ginger

Mix together.  Form into patties.  Bake at 350 until they are cooked to your liking.  I try to undercook a bit when I am doing a big cook-up since I am going to freeze them and reheat/cook again and don’t want a hockey puck.

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You can play around with other seasonings too … like adding some shredded apple (like in the photo above) or try chorizo seasonings!

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Compote of Fennel, Onion, Pancetta, and Golden Raisins

Fennel was my mother-in-law’s favorite vegetable. I never had it until I found this recipe in our local paper.

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Now this is one of my favorite side-dishes!

Ingredients:

Thinly slice 1 onion (I forgot to thinly slice when I made it this time.  It was still good!)

Thinly slice 1 fennel bulb

Dice 2 oz of pancetta (I used 2 slices of organic nitrite-free bacon since that’s what I had)

1/4 cup of golden raisins.

 

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Add the pancetta (or bacon) to a pan and let cook.

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Add the onion, fennel, and raisins.

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Stir.  Stir some more.

Let start to brown and reduce.

Lower heat (from medium/medium-high) to lowish. Cover and let reduce by about 1/2.

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Raise heat a little, uncover, and let brown up a bit. Eat. Enjoy!

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Easy Sauteed Swiss Chard

And another favorite is sautéed Swiss Chard.  An often maligned green, yet super-healthy and delicious. This is one of my grandmother’s recipes …

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Chop 1/2 large Vidalia or other sweet onion.  Separate stalks from leaves on chard.  Chop roughly.  Add both to a hot pan with fat of choice.  (I usually use bacon fat.  Everything is better with bacon fat!)  Cook until onion is translucent.  Add greens.  Take off burner in 1-2 minutes and stir until greens are wilted.

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Eat.  Yum.

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Curried Cauliflower

So, curried cauliflower.  I’m totally addicted.  And it’s so easy to make.

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Cut up a head of cauliflower into florets.

Heat 1-2 Tablespoons of coconut oil in a large pan.

Add 1-2 Tablespoons of curry powder.  Stir to mix with oil.

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Add cauliflower and stir to coat.

Add one can (11 oz) of coconut water.

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Cook until softened (I cover it for a little while to let it cook through depending on how big the pieces of cauliflower are).

Continue to cook uncovered to allow the coconut water to cook off and let the cauliflower brown a bit.

Share if you have to.

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New Adventures

So here I am, resurrecting my blogging.  I’ve been doing a lot of cooking, and my philosophy and focus has changed quite a bit over the last few years.  So it seemed easier to start a new blog rather than continue with the old one.  I will eventually delete it, but will be transferring some of the great recipes over here so I don’t lose them.  More to come down the road about my story over the last few years … are you waiting anxiously?  Ha!!

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