Paleolidays ~ Dairy Free Eggnog

A few years ago, my colleague Eila introduced me to coquitos, an eggnog-like alcoholic beverage from her island of Puerto Rico. I loved it! I thought making paleo-friendly eggnog would be as simple as replacing regular milk with coconut milk and that it would taste a lot like Eila’s coquito. Turns out it’s not that simple. In addition to the coconut milk, the¬†coquito recipe call for sweet condensed milk and well, sweet anything is pretty much frowned upon in the cavemen diet circles ūüė¶ Rather, paleo-friendly eggnog is more like regular eggnog, just a little less rich and a little less sweet.

 

 

Paleo Eggnog
Serves 4
4 cups coconut milk
8 egg yolks
4 tbsp maple syrup (add an extra tbsp or 2 if you want it to be sweeter)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
8 oz spiced rum (not strictly paleo but what’s the fun of eggnog without a little rum?)
Fresh nutmeg to grate (if available, ground nutmeg otherwise)
Ground cinnamon

Bring coconut milk to a simmer in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Whisk together egg yolks, maple syrup, and vanilla in a bowl until smooth and pale. Gradually whisk half the hot coconut milk into the egg mixture. Gradually is key here. If you do it too fast, the eggs will cook ūüė¶ Once you have carefully integrated half of the hot coconut milk into the egg yolks, pour back into the pot with remaining coconut milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring consistently, until thick and mixture nearly coats the back of a wooden spoon, 2 to 3 minutes. Next, cool the mixture down a little and stir in the rum, if you chose to add rum. Which you should. This version of eggnog is definitely not as sweet as the ones made with cream and sugar, so it might as well be boozy! Refrigerate at least 3 hours and up to overnight. Serve with freshly grated nutmeg and cinnamon.

Paleoween Stuffed Peppers

While my house isn’t entirely paleo, I do try and accomodate my husband’s diet preferences as much as I can, including today for halloween! These cute stuffed peppers are not only fun, they’re easy to make.

Paleo stuffed pepper
Makes 4 peppers 
4 orange bell peppers 
2 lbs Italian sausage, removed from cassing
1 lb fresh spinach (not baby spinach)
1 large onion, diced
1 large tomato, diced
garlic powder

In a large pot, boil enough water to cover the peppers. While the water heats up, cut a hat off the top of the peppers and remove all the seeds. Boil the peppers until they start being soft, then plunge them in ice water immediately so they retain their colour. Pre-heat the oven to 375F.

For the stuffing, heat a little coconut oil in a pan. Add the diced onion and cook for a few minutes. Add the sausage and cook until brown. Add tomato and spinach to the mixture and season with garlic powder. When the stuffing is cooked enough, remove from the heat. ¬†Using a small, sharp knife, carve out eyes, nose and a mouth on one side of the orange bell peppers, then carefully stuff them with the sausage-onion-spinach mix. Don’t overstuff them or it will come out through the holes you just cut out. Bake without the tops for 20 minutes, then add the tops right before serving for a perfect jack-o-lantern look!¬†

Bon halloween à tous!

Cool Watermelon Day Recipe

Apparently today is national watermelon day (who comes up with these?) To celebrate summer’s favourite fruit, I give you this cool (literally, cool, as in refreshing) watermelon-blueberry popsicles. They’re super easy to make.

I have one of these little single serve blender but I’m sure a full size one would work as well. Blend some watermelon chunks with a little lime juice. For 6 popsicles, 4 cups of watermelon and 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lime juice works. The original recipe called for 1-2 tablespoons of sugar but my husband is all paleo now so sugar has been banned in our house. And you really don’t need the extra sweetness, the watermelon should be sweet enough on its own. Once that is all blended, grab about one cup of blueberries and divide them between your popsicle molds. I found mine for $6 at the new T.J. Maxx downtown but you can also order some online (I like these sailboat ones.) Pour the watermelon liquid over the blueberries and freeze for 6 hours.

Happy watermelon day everyone! Oh and for those who are wondering, a watermelon in French is a pastèque. And it makes a great mojito too:
 

For that other refreshing watermelon drink, just muddle together 5 mint leaves, one small lime cut in quarters, and 1 tablespoon of superfine sugar (not paleo friendly… sorry hubby). Add some watermelon chunks (maybe a cup) and mash again. Stir in 2 ounces of white rum and some ice cube and voila, you’ve got a great cocktail to celebrate watermelon day!!¬†Cheers!

Adventures in Paleo Cooking~G√Ęteau de Viande

var _gaq = _gaq || []; _gaq.push([‘_setAccount’, ‘UA-24770815-1’]); _gaq.push([‘_trackPageview’]); (function() { var ga = document.createElement(‘script’); ga.type = ‘text/javascript’; ga.async = true; ga.src = (‘https:’ == document.location.protocol ? ‘https://ssl’ : ‘http://www’) + ‘.google-analytics.com/ga.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(ga, s); })(); My husband recently joined the fitness devotees of the CrossFit nation and adopted the paleo diet that’s suggested to improve training performance during the hard core workouts. As far as diets are concerned, we have a bit of a role reversal in my household. I’m pretty comfortable with my weight. I don’t eat a lot of fried or processed food, I never have. I’m French, I walk everywhere and eat what I want but in small quantities and that seems to have worked well for me so far. My heavier half, on the other hand, is from the South and has struggled to lose weight since adolescence. Over the years, I’ve had to adjust my kitchen to numerous fad diets I don’t really approve of, from slow carbs to South Beach and atkins. The problem I have with these low carbs, protein heavy diets is that they’re so high in fat and calories. In my opinion, the best way to lose a few pounds is to lower the amount of calories and fat that you eat and exercise regularly. But that’s not my husband’s opinion so I’ve learned to adapt and cook entirely separate meals for each of us. On a typical night, I might have a tofu red curry dish while he enjoys meat cake. Yes, meat cake (French lesson for today: g√Ęteau = cake, viande = meat). I figured if he’s not going to change his mind about the kind of diet he’s going to be into, I might as well embrace it and have a little fun with it…

Cake for that special carnivore in your life…
I’m thinking I’ll just put candles on it for the husband’s birthday!



Paleo Meat-Cake
Recipe adapted from Health-Bent
6-8 servings

For the meat cake: 1 lb ground pork, 1 lb beef, 1 cup almond flour, 2-3 eggs, 1 cup of home-made fire roasted tomato sauce, 10-12 slices of bacon, salt and pepper.
For the fire roasted tomato sauce: 1 15oz can of fire roasted tomatoes, 1 yellow onion roughly chopped, 6 cloves of garlic (the husband likes garlic a lot!), a teaspoon of garlic powder.

Preheat your oven at 350¬ļF and start preparing the tomato sauce by blending all the ingredients together in a food processor. Add one cup of the tomato sauce to the meats, almond flour, and eggs and mix roughly with your hands. Season with salt and pepper and split the meat mixture in two loaf pans and top with the slices of bacon. I didn’t have a loaf pan for some reason, so I used a cheesecake pan, which actually worked out really well. The meat will shrink a bit during the 45 minutes that it’s in the oven, so you want to make sure you fill them up to the max. After the “cakes” have baked for 45 minutes, turn the oven to broil and cook for an additional 10 minutes or until the bacon is nice and crispy. While the bacon is broiling, heat the left over fire roasted tomato sauce on the stove top, to serve over the slices of meatcake when you’re ready to eat.

Bon appétit!