Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Coconut Curry Shrimp Soup

Do you ever start cooking a meal with the intent to make one thing but the end result is something entirely different? This happens to me more often then I would like to admit, and this soup is the result of such an event. You see, it was inspired by a shrimp dish I had at a local restaurant but when I started cooking one thing led to another and I ended up with this flavorful coconut curry shrimp soup. This has become one of my favorite soups to prepare when I’m in a jam and need dinner quickly! It is quite easy, tasty, and especially perfect for a cold or rainy night. What I love about this recipe is that it doesn’t require exact amounts of anything. It’s a little bit of this… a little bit of that. Before you know it, you have an awesome soup your friends and family will love! Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

1 kilogram of falling figs = 1 Fig Newton

That’s right, today we’re talking conversions! With Easter weekend over I’m recuperating from a baking/cooking hangover. We had family in town for dinner and dessert. Luckily, we headed out to a wonderful restaurant in Hoboken for dinner, and then came back to the NJ Paleo Girl abode for coffee and desserts: a platter of fruit for yours truly and Baklava and Florentine Lace Cookies for the masses. It got me thinking though, with so many of you out there hosting holidays, dinner parties, or just cooking for your families on a nightly basis, how do you make that recipe for chocolate cake that was handed down from your grandma? Here are some common ingredient suggestions for adapting your favorite recipes to make them Paleo Friendly!

Milk - nut milk, coconut milk

Friday, April 22, 2011

greenify your spring cleaning

Today is Earth Day and Good Friday! So let’s celebrate… with Spring Cleaning? May not sound like the glorious day off you imagined, but after a long winter, it's time for spring-cleaning, and what better day then Earth Day. But what cleaning products will you use? Look around your house…go ahead, I will wait…

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Paleo Pulled Pork and a feast fit for a king!

This Tuesday I loaded up my Crock Pot with a big ole' pig shoulder, set it, and forgot it! When I got home 9 hours later my kitchen smelled delicious, and my poor pup was salivating. This meal is easy to make, and although may take some time in the beginning, it'll make you enough to eat all week! I left the pork on warm in the pot, and got started on my sauce and breads! (I know the paleo strict turn their noses up at paleo baking, but I love the challenge, and often the results!) I made two loaves of bread because I was unsure of the recipes and ingredients and didn't want to be left without a nice chunk of bread to dip in the yummy BBQ sauce that was I cooking! After the sauce was simmering on the stove and the bread loaves were in the oven, I started on the Paleo Mayo and Paleo Slaw. Once all pieces were ready, the meal was a snap to throw together, very filling, super comforting for a nice cool spring night (I can't wait to break it out again when the temperatures heat up), and has only gotten better each day since!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Paleo Lent Week 7--- the home stretch: brinner is a winner!

Easter is just around the corner, so take a break, it's been a long 40 days and serve up some meat-less BRINNER (breakfast for dinner) this Friday night!

It's a shame that most breakfasts are eaten on the run. Even when you take the time to make a more complicated breakfast, your family is too busy and just won't sit around the table. (I know in my house PaleoHubby has worked out, showered, eaten, and is at work before I even roll out of bed!) Learn from the past and try this tip from my childhood and enjoy breakfast again! When I was young, it was a treat to have breakfast for dinner, so serve breakfast foods for dinner this Friday, and get the best of both worlds; talking and relaxing at the end of the long week, and delicious, comforting foods. But regardless of whether you choose dishes that you know like the back of your hand or try something new (like the paleo recipes for pancakes and muffins below!), breakfast fare remains the perfect antidote to dinnertime doldrums and a break from routine that allows you to revisit the often neglected breakfast goodies.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Boosting Beneficial Bacteria

As far back as the 1950’s chemical additives began making their way into our foods as a way to extend shelf life and ‘freshness’ of food products. The aim of these processes was to kill off unwanted bad bacteria in the food. However in addition to killing off bad bacteria; these processes also cause the good bacteria that are essential for our health, to die.

This decrease of beneficial bacteria in our food has lead to the decrease of beneficial bacteria in our gut. A gut with a low population of beneficial bacteria increases our chances of health problems, such as:

• Candida
• Food allergies
• Low libido
• Digestion problems
• Autism
• Lowered immune system
• Fatigue
• Skin Rashes
• Joint and muscle pain

Monday, April 18, 2011

and the BEET goes on…

My love affair with beets began back in high school. I was trying to lose weight and my friend told me about the 3 day diet. On this absolutely, completely, totally, 100% ridiculous fad-diet I would eat beets each night, along with other random food pairings such as hotdogs, greenbeans, tunafish, and vanilla ice cream. I had never had a beet before so I headed to the store and picked up cans of beets and my life has never been the same! My friends think I’m odd, but I cannot get enough: if there is a beet on the menu, I’m ordering!

Unfortunately beets are not high on the favorite foods list; a lot of people think beets taste like dirt, or they are afraid of the blood red color or turned off by the appearance (a lumpy ball with a tail)… Let’s face it, beets are a beaten vegetable. This makes me sad because beets are a one stop shop to longevity! Look at all Beets do:

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Paleo Lent- Week #6: Meet me in San Francisco!

Lombard Hill, Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Warf…

This Wednesday we’re escaping to the beautiful San Francisco… and the deliciousness of CIOPPINO: A seafood stew!

This is truly the "Soul" food of the San Francisco waterfront and probably one of my favorite dishes. There are thousands of ways to make this stew but all of them take a bunch of seafood, great spices, rich tomatoes, and bold dry wine resulting in the most flavorful and messy to eat stew that ever was! So make some for your family and friends, but remember to serve with plenty of napkins and maybe even a bib and a plastic tablecloth!

The name comes from ciuppin, meaning "to chop" or "chopped" which described the process of making the stew by chopping up various leftovers from the day's catch. Although the eponymous Cioppino's in San Francisco tells a far better story of the broken English cries begging for the men to donate a small piece of their catch for the communal stew begin prepared on the famous Fisherman's Wharf back in the day… "chip in"… “chip in”  turned into "chip-in-O" or "Cioppino!" A few clams or crabs, a couple handfuls of shrimp, scallops, squid, mussels, some red snapper, halibut or flounder. Once the stew was prepared, the "Club" of San Francisco fisherman would gather round and talk about the days catch and dunk San Francisco Sour Dough bread into the rich broth. There was no care as to how the stew is assembled. It consisted of throwing the days catch into a big pot and pouring a tomato sauce on top, and then leaving all these flavors meld and enhance each other for awhile. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

O.N.E. Coconut Water Recall!

This was just brought to my attention and I wanted to share it with you all!

Date: March 11, 2011

What: O.N.E. Coconut Water

Why: Potential oxidation of the product may permit the growth of mold.

Scope: Florida, Georgia, Indiana, New York, South Carolina, and Tennessee

Monday, April 11, 2011

Citrus Shroom Chicken and Mashed "Taters"

Happy Monday Everyone!

Tonight’s dinner is super easy, and delicious! While the chicken breasts are in the oven, whip up your mushroom sauce and enjoy a healthful and great tasting meal. Serve with some broccoli florets, or try some "paleo mashed potatoes"!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

let there be cake!

It’s my birthday! And we’re celebrating with a Paleo Treat!


Lucky for me, I currently have an absurdly large amount of beautiful organic carrots in my refrigerator (thanks to Urban Organic)! So what else would I pick to make for this glorious birthday--- that’s right, Carrot Cake! But not just any old carrot cake, a Paleo Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Frosting!

This cake is moist and delicious with a just a hint of orange. It’s also sweet from the orange and carrots so if you don’t have a very big sweet tooth you may want to cut back on the honey, but for a real treat leave it as it is! Bonus: This cake can be kept in a tin or in the refrigerator for about a week.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Paleo Lent Week #5: who let the catfish out of the bag?

In 1987, President Ronald Reagan established National Catfish Day (June 25th) because farm-raised catfish became such a staple of the diet of the United States! So let us celebrate the Catfish this week during Lent’s Meat-Free Fridays! (I am almost ashamed to admit--- I have never had Catfish- not really a jersey thing...) Catfish is high in Vitamin D and provides 100% of your daily Vitamin B12. It also has high levels of phosphorous and selenium, and low in Mercury! Round out your health benefits, and top your fish, with a fresh pineapple and mango salsa. (The salsa can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. yay!)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

are you eating enough fish?

The new U.S. Dietary Guidelines, which are released every five years by the Department of Health and Human Services, are out! For us Paleo Peeps out there, these guidelines are no brainers- but it’s nice to see that the Guidelines are backing us up (mostly- there is some mention of soy, grains, and beans). Here is their paleo support- yay!

• Drink water instead of sugary drinks.
• Increase vegetable and fruit intake.
• Eat a variety of vegetables, especially dark-green, red and orange vegetables.
• Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
• Choose foods that provide more potassium, dietary fiber, calcium, and vitamin D, which are nutrients of concern in American diets. These foods include vegetables and fruits.
• Choose a variety of protein foods, which include seafood, lean meat and poultry, eggs, and unsalted nuts and seeds.
• Increase the amount and variety of seafood consumed by choosing seafood in place of some meat and poultry.

The government is also pushing us to eat more (of some things) -- at least eight ounces of fish a week!! I know this is something (prior to Lent!) I have been lacking in my diet. I just find fish to be harder to cook. I think of fish as delicate and therefore very time consuming... but it doesn't have to be. There are many recipes out there for quick and easy or hearty and well-loved fish. So eat fish or shellfish as your main meal at least once a week for your health. Pick a day and make it your official seafood day! Like Meat-less Friday’s during Lent? Stick to it after Easter Sunday, or start a new tradition- Meat-Less Mondays anyone?

Fish is low in fat and is a good quality protein, filled with vitamins like riboflavin (Vitamin B2), which aids the body in the metabolism of amino acids, fatty acids, and carbohydrates and Vitamin D, which aids calcium absorption to help prevent osteoporosis. Fish is also rich in calcium and phosphorus and a great source of minerals, such as iron, zinc, potassium (a mineral needed for muscles, nerves, and fluid balance in the body), iodine, and magnesium. Fish is also an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, a fatty acid that our body cannot produce on its own. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in every kind of fish, but are especially high in fatty fish. Good fish choices for Omega-3’s include salmon, tuna (canned light), trout, sardines, sea bass, oysters, crab, perch, shrimp, and cod. Researchers for the American Dietetic Association found that fatty fish aid short-term memory. The Rush Institute for Healthy Aging states that people who eat at least one meal of fish per week will be significantly less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease than those who never eat fish.

Have concerns about the price of fish? Why not try Tilapia? It's readily available in most markets and doesn't cost very much. It's a very mild white fish that you can coat with “paleo bread crumbs” (almond flour and egg wash) and pan fry, stick under the broiler for a few minutes with some light seasoning (oregano or old bay), or just steam in a foil packet with some veggies and lemon juice and garlic. It only takes a second to cook, really. Want to branch out: Here's how to make the perfect piece of grilled salmon (ridiculously easy!). And I’m obsessed with this spicy grilled tuna with garden salsa (use coconut oil instead of the spray for a tropical flavor!). Bonus: The tomatoes offer a hefty dose of vitamin C.

Visit your local fish market, and challenge yourself to try something new--- I know I will be going this weekend!

p.s.  I apologize for the lack and/or shortness of posts this week, I am getting sick as well as turning another year older... I will be back in full effect next week--- I promise.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

NYC Paleo Meet Up: April 16th, 7pm

“Enjoy a grain-free salad bowl at Chipotle? Love that they carry natural meats and try to source them from small pastured farms? But they still use soy oil in most of their ingredients. Let's flash mob and tell them we don't want soy in our beef!”

Let's tell Chipotle Test Kitchen that we love meat not soy!

Saturday, April 16, 2011
7:00 PM
149 8th Ave New York, NY

How to find us: The mob of people demanding beef without soy oil!


Friday, April 1, 2011

Paleo Beauty Friday: Honey Mint Scrub

A scrub is a guy that can't get no love from me,
Hanging out the passenger side,
Of his best friends ride,
Trying to hollar at me.

No, in all seriousness- Body scrubs are a great way to keep your skin healthy and beautiful through exfoliation (they can be abrasive so only use 1-2 times per week).

You can buy a body scrub for anywhere from $5-$50 to give yourself a body scrub at home or spend even more to get a body scrub treatment at a spa. Most body scrubs have these three ingredients: an exfoliant, oil, and a fragrance. The Exfoliant is the abrasive material that rubs away the dead skin cells on the surface, revealing the softer, younger cells just below. The Oil holds the mixture together so you can apply it to your skin (more expensive body scrubs usually have more expensive oils like macadamia oil, kukui nut oil and sweet almond oil). The Fragrance leaves your skin smelling nice after the scrub treatment. Ideally, the fragrance will come from high-quality essential oils; budget body scrubs will have synthetic fragrances and more synthetic ingredients in general.

So for this installment of Paleo Beauty Friday I am saving you money and helping you to make your own quality body scrub! This mixture will not only make your skin feel soft; it is also full of minerals & nutrients that will benefit your skin for days afterwards (and makes enough for several applications!). This body scrub uses jojoba oil, peppermint oil, honey, vitamin E, and almond meal.