My favourite caveman (sorry husband)

Here is my next recipe recommendation, though I’m cheating a little cause I didn’t just discover this.  But I did find it and have made it and wanted to review it.

You can find the recipe here, on the Civilised Caveman website.  Its the baby of George, my favourite caveman, even if he is sporting a horrible beard right now (beards are NOT sexy, fellas… not EVER).   George has so many amazing recipes and his food photography certainly does get the saliva glands going.  Whenever I am looking for a ‘paleo version’ of anything, I head for George’s site first.  He’s pretty rock-solid in terms of providing easy, tasty, realistic Paleo recipes. Speaking of…

This recipe is such a ‘go to’ in our household.  I loved Banana Cake pre-Paleo and so when I found myself with a few very ripe banana’s I went looking for a Paleo version.

I’ve tried a couple of different ones, I’ll be honest there is another one that’s almost as good, but this one is definitely my favourite.  Its a perfect snack food and can become a dessert also, if you’re so inclined (which we frequently are.)

BananaBread2 Paleo Banana Bread

 

So making this bread is super, super simple.  Its essentially two steps – blend your ‘wet’ ingredients, add your dry ingredients.  Even I can manage two steps!  Then bake.

The bread that you end up with is moist, flavoursome and sturdy.  The loaf is compact (about 23 x 7 x 5 cm’s) but that helps me with portion control!  The other brilliant thing about it is that with a simple addition (cocoa) you can have chocolate banana bread.  Another variation we often do is that instead of the loaf tin, I spoon the batter into a muffin tray and it gives me 12 perfectly sized, yummy muffins.  Perfect for snacks, lunches or dessert.

OK, so they aren’t the giant, puffy topped muffins you’ll get at McCafe… BUT they are guilt free.  Even when we go one step further and add Paleo chocolate ganache. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…!

So do yourself a favour, head over to George’s website and and check out this recipe and his many, many other brilliant recipes.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful day out there – thanks for reading!

 

x S

Mmmm a Paleo Bread?

So, I’ve realised that I can’t really chronicle my journey from non-Paleo to Paleo on this blog anymore because in my mind, I’m there. I am Paleo and I have no plans to go back.

That said – I still have loads to learn and the biggest thing is still new foods.  The biggest threat to my new, healthier diet is the foods I used to eat. Like bread and pasta and cereal.  Those foods that made eating easy.

That said, there are soooo many Paleo alternatives out there for me to try. So, I figure I can try foods and keep blogging AND help out others all in one go!

I am NOT a gourmet cook.  I am not even a very good cook.  I’m an average cook. I know more than boiling water but I don’t have any more than a totally average skill level.  So I figure, I’ll find recipes on the net, cook them and then review the experience on here for y’all!  Obviously, full credit to the recipe creator (I’ll ensure I post links, I won’t be posting the actual recipes on here), but also not going to pull my punches. If I think its good I’ll say. If I think its something only Matt Moran could successfully produce I’ll definitely say.  This way I can start to build up a store of reliable recipes. And maybe you guys can benefit from my experiences!

So – my first recipe: Paleo Herb Bread by multiply delicious.

Image

Recipe is here:

http://www.multiplydelicious.com/thefood/2012/03/paleo-herb-bread/

Ok so I wanted a savoury bread that I could use to go with meals, or make a sandwich with, just like in the non-paleo days.  I’ve tried many, many recipes and they have come out waaaay too sweet, waaay too flat or rock hard and dry.  I got a positive feeling from this recipe because it was herb bread – rosemary – one of my favourite herbs! So I thought I’d give it a go today.

On the negative side – the amount of mixture that the recipe makes resulted in a ‘loaf’ that is about 25cm long, 10cm wide and 6-7cm high.  So I’d want to double the mixture to get a real “loaf size” loaf.  Unfortunately that would equate to 10 eggs. Yowsers.

However, on the plus side:

Taste is good! The herbs are nice and light (I used a little less than recommended) but still have a positive impact.  Taste is neutral enough that it can be eaten just with (grassfed) butter, or with honey, or with more ingredients (eg: a salad sandwich).

Texture is solid enough. Its still more crumbly than gluten laden bread but it is definitely solid enough that it holds together.

Time – only took me one dish (food processor) and about 10 mins to get the batter together. Perfect!  Then straight into the loaf tin and into the oven, so less than 20 mins from go > woah.  With practice I could knock that down to 10-15 minutes.  I really like that in a recipe. Like, REALLY, really like it.

Simple – the recipe had more than 5 ingredients BUT there were literally 2 steps. Dry ingredients in, wet ingredients in. That’s it. I love it.

All in all I’m a big fan of this recipe. Its still Paleo bread but its the best savoury version I’ve found so far. And you can leave the herbs out, or use different herbs to change it up. Next I’ll try garlic bread I think. Yum!

Overall – I think 8/10 (and that’s a good score, from me).

Thx for reading 🙂

S.

A day [or 3] in the stomach of a Paleon…

So I thought I’d post something useful today.  A friend asked me recently, “But what do you eat?” and I could understand her curiosity. Sure, all those paleo recipes out there are fabulous, but a lot of them are not really simple or use ingredients you will always have on hand.  And its hard to put a day together, menu wise, if you have to look up recipe’s for everything.

So, I thought I’d record for 3 days everything I ate, and put it up here, and let you all be the judge of the practicality, possibility and general do-ability of being Paleo.  Keep in mind that I was at work these three days, working 12hr shifts, so I needed foods I could take to work in a cooler bag and cook in a microwave. For all meals except dinner.

Day 1:

AM – Cup of tea, black with no sugar; 1 banana; 1 boiled egg.

Midday – left over roast chicken with salad.

PM – 1 pear; nuts; 1 boiled egg

Dinner – Marinated kangaroo fillet with cauliflower mash and balsamic tomatoes.

Day 2:

AM – Sweet potato [microwave baked] with tuna; 1 boiled egg; cup of tea, black with no sugar.

Midday – left over BBQ chicken with cauliflower mash

PM – Chicken schnitzel with cauliflower, broccoli, prawns & garlic sauce **note that this meal contained non-paleo items [schnitzel & garlic sauce] but we were out for dinner. 80/20 right?

Day 3:

AM – no food, intermittent fasting

Midday – Sweet potato [microwave baked] with tuna.

PM – 1 banana; 1 boiled egg; nuts

Dinner – paleo chicken schnitzel, broccoli, eggplant ‘chips’

So, as you can see, eating Paleo is possible, but it is different. I’ve had to rethink what items are suitable for what times – breakfast no longer has to be cereals, toast, etc., but can be anything I want including last nights’ left overs. Today, I had left over roast beef for breakfast and it was actually amazing.

Its also tough on the snack side, but when you find yourself turning to fruits and nuts as snacks by habit, you’ll be amazed at how happy you’ll feel toward yourself for making healthier choices.  I am not a fruit fan, but I know its important for a balanced diet and now I eat more fruit than I ever have. Go me.

And now – go you! Have a think, tell me what your typical Paleo day is, if you’re already Paleo, or what it is if you aren’t – and I can try to give you a Paleo version 🙂

Thanks for reading – sharing – liking – following –

x S

Some staple substitutions…

So, jumping on the Paleo wagon removed a whole lot of food from my fridge and pantry that I would consider staples.  Rice, being a huge one. Pasta – my all time favourite food. And things you don’t think of so often – like tomato sauce (not paste) or breadcrumbs or flour.

But there are things you can use as substitutes, some better than others, and I thought I’d just run through a couple of the ones I’ve latched onto. Basic, yes, and there are loads of alternate recipes if you Google it, but here are a couple that work for me and mine.  I’ll add more as I go along 🙂

[One basic direct substitution we love is dukkah for breadcrumbs. EG on Chicken Schnitzel.  Just brush oil on your fillet then sprinkle it with dukkah and fry. Yum!]

Substitute Cauliflower for …. Rice:

I used to eat rice a lot. I mean, we bought it in 5kg bags because we went through so much. One of our favourite meals: steak, egg and rice. Yummmm.  But, now not an option and I’m ok with that – its not like I can really miss the flavour, right?  But I do miss having that bland, liquid soaking texture in certain meals, like Thai Green Curry. So, our solution?

Cauliflower Rice.

I’ve read lots of variations of this, and loads of recipes call for it, but it actually took me a while to find a “How to make Cauliflower Rice” recipe. I tinkered because I wasn’t happy with some outcomes, and this is what I’ve come up with to create a reasonably fluffy rice that will actually soak up sauce:

[This makes enough for 2-3 people. Prep time is about 10 minutes and cook time about 10 minutes]

  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into large florets
  • Oil [I prefer to use olive – but your choice]
  • Spices to suit – I just use garlic powder generally
  • Equipment: board & knife, food processor, bowl, large frypan.

Ensure the cauliflower is dry. Moisture is your enemy here! Buzz the florets in a food processor until grainy, removing the grounds regularly as you go to ensure you don’t get any that is over processed.  Place in a bowl and set aside until you 10 minutes from chow time…I imagine cold cauliflower rice would be fairly unappealing!

When its time – heat your oil in a large frypan.  Add your chosen spices to your rice and stir well; if you are using fresh garlic, I’d add it to your oil now so it heats with the oil.  Add the ‘rice’ in manageable amounts [I have a really big pan so it all goes in at once] and stir fry your ‘rice’ until it is heated through and a little soft. This should take no more than ten minutes – taste it to know.

Serve with your favourite meal J  You’ll find some recipes call for you to cook the cauliflower florets first, but I find the frying from raw is what allows this rice to soak up sauces like actual rice would. If its cooked first, its soaked in moisture already and can tend to be gluggy. Boo to that!

 

 

Substitute Zucchini for…Pasta:

Again, something I heard SO much about but it’s as if the recipe owners just assume you know how to produce this wondrous thing. So important fact #1 – this will NOT taste like pasta does. Sorry. Important fact #2 – if you over cook it you might as well toss it. It will NOT go well with the food you’d planned to put it with. Important fact #3 – when I say medium zucchini I am referring to one that is approx. 25cm long and has a girth of 4-5 cm.

 

Zucchini Pasta

[Prep time depends on how many people but should be no more than 10mins. Cook time is 30 seconds. For real.]

  • 1 medium zucchini per person [adult]
  • Equipment: Julienne [spaghetti] or flat vegetable peeler [fettucine] or a ‘spiralizer’ [loads of shapes], microwave safe dish large enough for your ‘pasta’ [or cook it in batches], microwave.

Peel the skin from your zucchini & discard. Using the peeler, peel the zucchini length ways to make your ‘pasta’. Try to rotate the zucchini per slice so you arrive at the seeds on all sides at once. It’s not imperative – it’s just easier. Once you get to the seeds, stop. Give the core to the worm farm.  Place your pasta into your microwave dish and add about 2cm of very hot or boiling water. Put in microwave on high for 30 seconds. Drain the water out immediately and cover to keep warm if not serving straight away.

Draining the water out immediately afterwards and only cooking for 30 seconds ensures your pasta will have an ‘al dente’ texture and not be mush. Which has happened to me before and it was terrible. Ugh.

 

Anyways so that’s it for now, just a couple of simple ones – let me know if you’ve got any simple substitution recipes to share – I’d love to read them 🙂

As always – thanks for reading and take care out there x