Saturday, November 23, 2013

Paleo Pumpkin Spice Syrup

Prep time: 10min
Cook time: 10min

1C Water
3/4C Honey
3/4C Pumpkin Puree
1.5t Pumpkin Pie Spice
1t Cinnamon 
1/2t Vanilla Extract

Place all ingredients into a sauce pan and over medium heat, whisk until it's all incorporated.  Heat until simmering (around 190 degrees).  Do not boil as the honey and cinnamon will clump if it gets to boiling point. Keep it simmering, stirring occasionally for 5 more minutes.  Remove from heat and run it through a fine mesh strainer into a glass storage container. I use mason jars.  Store it in the frig. Put it in your coffee, make a latte or a frappuccino, drizzle over pancakes or waffles.... or you can just eat it by the spoonful like I do! Enjoy!!

Paleo Chocolate Pie

Prep time: 25min

Crust Ingredients: 
 -1C Walnut Halves and Pieces
 -1/4C (about 4) Dates, soft & pitted 
 -1t Ground Cinnamon
 -Pinch of Sea Salt
Filling Ingredients: 
 -1C Coconut Cream (Refrigerate 2 cans of full fat coconut milk - scoop the cream off the top - do not use the liquid or you can just get a can of Coconut Cream at Trader Joe's) 
 -1/2C (about 8) Dates, soft & pitted
 -3oz Unsweetened 100% Chocolate, melted
 -1/4C Coconut Oil, melted
 -2t Vanilla Extract

Place all ingredients for the pie crust in the food processor and run until everything is incorporated and you have a fine crumby mixture.  It will be sticky enough for you to roll into a ball and then pat down into the bottom of a glass pie dish.  Only press the crust up half way as the chocolate layer will not go further than that. Put pie crust to the side and lightly heat the coconut cream over the stove in a sauce pan until lukewarm.  In another sauce pan, melt your chocolate and coconut oil.  Pour all filling ingredients into the food processor and run until you have a smooth chocolate filling.  Be careful that you don't eat it all prior to pouring it into the pie dish!! It's SOOOO good.  If you try it and like it to be more sweet, add a couple of drops of stevia or 1T honey. Once you have poured it into your pie dish, place it into the frig to set for a couple of hours prior to serving. It is extremely easy to cut/serve. This is hands-down the best pie I've ever had.  Thank you, Kelly!!!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Paleo Magic Brownie Bars

Prep time: 20min
Cook time: 25min
Serves: 9
Author: Juli Bauer, a fellow foodie

  Brownie Layer: 
    15 Dried, Medjool Dates, pitted
    1/4C Coconut Oil , melted
    2T Coconut Flour
    3 Eggs, whisked
    1/4C Cocoa Powder
    2T Honey
    1t Vanilla Extract
    1/2t Baking Soda
   Magic Layer: 
    1 1/2C Unsweetened Shredded Coconut Shreds (not the reduced fat shreds) 
    2T Coconut Oil 
    2T Coconut Cream Concentrate
    1T Honey
    2 Egg Whites, whisked until foamy
    1/4t Salt 

Preheat your oven to 365F. Now add your dates to the food processor and begin to pulse until you get a clumpy paste. Then add your coconut oil and cocoa powder to the food processor and puree until well mixed, and it has become smoother. Then add the rest of the ingredients and puree until smooth. Grease an 8x8 inch glass baking dish with coconut oil.  Then pour your brownie mix and smooth it out in the dish.  Now make the top layer by adding your shredded coconut, coconut oil and coconut cream concentrate and honey to a glass bowl and microwave for 5-10 seconds at a time to melt and mix together with a spoon.  After the mix is incorporated, add your foamy egg whites and mix well.  Pour topping over your brownie batter and smooth it out until covering the entire surface of the brownie layer. bake at 365F for 20-25 min and the top is getting a little golden.  They cut better when cooled a bit. Enjoy!! 

Easy, Healthy Ranch Dressing

Prep time: 10min

1 1/2C Full Fat Plain Greek Yogurt 
1t Dried Dill Weed
1/4t Salt 
1/4t Pepper
1 Garlic Clove, minced or crushed
6T Aged Parmesan, grated
4T Olive Oil
4T Grapeseed Oil 

Place all ingredients, except for the oils, into your food processor and blend until smooth. Next, mix your oils in and slowly stream in the oils while your food processor is running to emulsify. Try to span over a minute or longer. Remove from processor and store in glass or plastic container in frig for up to 1 week.  

Variations: You can do an avocado ranch dressing by adding an avocado or you can make a bacon ranch by adding 3 bacon slices chopped up into your processor.  Have fun with it!! 

**This is a thinner ranch dressing. It's definitely not thick like Hidden Valley.  You can make it thicker with an avocado if you prefer a thicker dressing. 

Paleo Chocolate Cinnamon Marshmallows

Active Prep Time: 45min
Inactive Prep Time: 4-6 hours of letting the marshmallows dry before cutting them

These marshmallows have half the amount of sugar than average homemade marshmallow recipe. Sweetener amounts can't really be reduced more without affecting the stability of the marshmallow.

--->>>>Instructional Video from Author - Jenni Hulet (this helps so much!) 

1 cup filtered water (split into half cups)
2 1/2- 3 tablespoons Great Lakes brand (grass beef gelatin)
1 cup organic light colored honey, maple syrup or half of each
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
optional: Cocoa Powder, Toasted Coconut, Cinnamon (in place of the traditional powdered sugar) to coat the outsides of the marshmallows. ***Coconut flour does not work....

Note: Using a starch works best for coating marshmallows that will be used for roasting or topping sweet potatoes. It helps them to dry out faster and the extra starch helps with the browning process.

1. Grease an 8×8(or larger) pan and line with parchment paper in both directions.  Leave some length to use as handles when removing your finished marshmallows. Grease the parchment paper again and sprinkle with a layer of arrowroot starch or other coating of choice.
2. In your mixer bowl, add the gelatin with 1/2 cup of water. I like to give mine a good stir to be sure there are no lumps.  
3. While the gelatin is blooming, pour the other 1/2 cup of water in a sauce pan along with the honey and the salt. Turn the burner on at a medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil. Place a candy thermometer in the sauce pan and continue to boil the mixture until it reaches 242-245 degrees (or the soft/firm ball stage) Don' not go over 245 degrees. This could take about 10-15 minutes depending on how hot the burner is and the size of your pot. 

Note: If your pot is too big the sugar syrup will be more likely to burn as the temp will rise too quickly and the thermometer will have trouble reading correctly. If the honey mixture foams up, watch it closely so that it doesn't over flow. You can use a spoon to break up the foam but try not to stir the actual syrup. When it reaches 242-245 degrees, immediately remove the sauce pan from the heat. 
4. If using a standing mixer set it to low/med. Pour the honey mixture into the bowl in a slow steady stream down the side of the bowl, combining it with the softened gelatin. Pouring down the side of the bowl here is very important, otherwise the sugar syrup will be too hot when it hits the gelatin causing the marshmallow mixture to break later when you try to spread it. Also, be sure that the syrup and the gelatin are well combined before moving to the next step. If you need to you can even stop and stir the gelatin when half of the sugar syrup is poured, making sure it is getting mixed in and resume pouring.

If using a hand mixer you may want to let the sugar syrup cool down to 225-230 degrees before adding to the gelatin. This is because it is much harder to pour at a slow steady stream while holding a hand mixer. This is unless you have an extra hand to help you out.

Turn the mixer to high and continue beating until it becomes thick like marshmallow creme and completely cool to the touch (about 7-10 min). These times will vary depending on the mixer and even the size of bowl used. Add the vanilla a few minutes before it's done mixing giving it enough time to mix in completely.
Turn off the mixer and transfer the marshmallow creme to the prepared pan. Remember, if using a coating (such as arrowroot/shredded coconut/cocoa....), add a light sprinkling to the bottom of the pan first before transferring the marshmallow creme. Smooth the top (add more coating to the top if using one). Pat to smooth again if needed.
If you are not using a coating then lightly grease your hands with oil and pat smooth.This will help keep the marshmallow cream from sticking to your fingers. Alternatively you can press it down with parchment paper, leaving it there till the marshmallows are completely set. This can take anywhere from an hour to 4-6 hours depending on your gelatin, temp of the syrup and how set you want them. If you want them to look nice and clean after cutting I recommend waiting at least 4 hours, even if they seem set.

Other coating options: Try all kinds of crushed nuts, coconut, almond flour mixed with spices, cocoa or other starches.
When set, remove the marshmallows by lifting from the parchment paper flaps. Cut to desired size and add more coating while cutting if needed and toss them again in some starch once cut for a super nice finish.

Trouble Shooting:

1. If the marshmallows are too soft, your sugar syrup probably did not get hot enough. If they set too fast your sugar syrup was probably too hot. Most often this is due to the thermometer being "off'. You can test your thermometers accuracy by placing the tip in a pot of boiling water. If you are at sea level it should read 212 degrees F or 100 degrees C.

2. If the marshmallows are wet at the bottom after setting and drying, then you probably did not whip them until they were completely cool before spreading in the pan or piping.

3. If the marshmallows seize after or during whipping, you probably added the sugar syrup to fast causing the marshmallow to "break". Be sure to allow the syrup to slide down the side of the bowl. This will give it time to cool down before hitting the gelatin mixture.

4. If the gelatin was still lumpy when marshmallows set, be sure to let the syrup melt the gelatin. If needed you can stop and stir the sugar syrup and gelatin once added.

ROASTING: For best results we use a torch for roasting and allow marshmallows intended for roasting to dry extra long if they are on the softer side. Once cut I leave mine out, covered with a cheese cloth for a few hours. After that they can be stored a jar, sealed bag or air tight container. I don't keep mine longer than 3-5 days. Stability of the marshmallow under roasting conditions will vary quite a bit depending on the "actual" temp reached when heating the sugar syrup. 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Paleo Asian Chop Salad

Prep time: 30min
Serves 2-4 depending on if it's the side or the main meal

Ingredients for the dressing:
2t Minced Garlic
1T Fresh Cilantro 
2T Salted Creamy Almond or Cashew Butter
1 1/2T Lime Juice
11T Coconut Aminos
1/2T Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4t Powdered Ginger
1T Almond Milk 
1t Honey
2T Sesame Oil 
1/4C Grapeseed Oil 

Ingredients for the salad: 
Bag of shredded carrots (Trader Joe's) 
Bag of shredded cabbage (Trader Joe's) 
2 Persian Cucumbers, sliced 
1 Bell Pepper, chopped
2-3 Chicken Thighs, grilled (You can use blackening seasoning)
2T Fresh Cilantro 
1/4C Sliced Almond, optional

Mix in blender all ingredients for dressing except the grapeseed oil.  With the blender on low, add the oil very slowly, over 30-60 seconds.  If you like heavy dressing, you will use it all, if not, you can save the rest in your frig.  Combine all the salad ingredients except for the chicken thighs, cilantro and almond slices. Pour desired amount of dressing and coat salad.  Serve onto plates and then garnish with the cilantro and almonds and place cut chicken on top. Enjoy! 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Paleo Honey Chipotle Salmon

Prep time: 10min
Cook time: 10min
Yields 2 Salmon Filets

2 Salmon Filets
2T Coconut Oil 
1/4C Lime Juice (not from concentrate, I find mine at Whole Foods) 
1t Chipotle Powder (I find mine at Whole Foods) 
1/8t Sea Salt
Honey to drizzle

Thaw salmon for 8-10hrs in your frig.  Preheat oven to 500F. Place salmon skin down on foil-lined baking sheet.  Rub coconut oil on the salmon. Then pour lime juice on top of each filet. Sprinkle each with chipotle powder and lightly sprinkle with sea salt. Drizzle with honey.  Before you put the salmon in, turn the oven down to 275F. Cook the salmon for 10min give or take insuring that you do not overcook.  Remove from oven and serve immediately. 

Paleo Double Chocolate Walnut Cookies

Prep time: 15min
Cook time: 10min
Yields: 25-30 cookies (1T of dough per cookie) 
Adapted from Michelle @ Gluten Free Fix! You're recipes are fantastic! 

1/2C Coconut Oil, Melted (Or if not strict Paleo, I recommend 1 Stick of Butter!) 
1/2C Honey
1/2C Almond Flour, Packed
2T Coconut Flour, Packed
1/2C Cocoa Poweder
1/2t Baking Soda
1/4t Sea Salt
3/4C Chopped Walnuts (or nuts of choice) 

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt to remove all clumps.  In a small bowl, whisk together the honey and melted coconut oil or butter. Pour the wet into the dry and incorporate. Fold in the nuts and chocolate. Preheat your oven to 325F and while it's preheating, let your dough set for 10min to thicken in the bowl. Scoop tablespoon sized cookies onto 2 parchment lined baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches in between each scoop. Bake in oven for 10min. Let cookies cool down on the cookie sheet before trying to remove. Eat warm with a cup of milk or coffee or you can completely cool them and store them in the frig for a treat later.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Paleo "Corn" Dogs Bites

Prep time: 10min
Cook time: 14-17min
Yields 20-24 Muffins 

1/4C Coconut Oil, melted (may sub with melted butter if not strict Paleo) 
3 Eggs
2T Honey
1/4C Almond Flour, firmly packed
2T Coconut Flour, firmly packed 
1/4t Baking Soda
1/4t Sea Salt 
3-4 Applegate Organic Beef Hot Dogs (cut in 1/2" slices) 

Preheat oven to 325F. Whisk melted coconut oil, eggs and honey.  Mix dry ingredients in a small bowl and then stir in dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Grease your mini muffin pan well.  Scoop 1T batter to fill only half way up. Place 1 hot dog slice in each muffin. Bake for 14-17min and golden brown. Serve warm. Word of warning, they will go fast!! 

**if you want to add some yumminess and aren't strict Paleo, sprinkle shredded aged-cheddar on top of the muffins just before popping in the oven! My husband and 2 of our friends who are NOT diet restricted in any way (and myself who of course is diet-restricted) consumed 72 of these in 1 day!! They are THAT good!!!