Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Carbonara w/ Zucchini Noodles

One of the dishes I missed eating since going Paleo and not eating gluten anymore was my husband's carbonara dish.  Carbonara consists of pasta, eggs, cream, onions & bacon. Cream can be removed completely from the recipe, but his family likes to add a little cream to their recipes so that's why it is included and tested out below with coconut cream.  It's a super simple dish but not very friendly to those that have digestion issues and have a hard time breaking down the proteins found in gluten(wheat, barley, rye - main offenders) & dairy.  This recipe could work with carrot noodles, spaghetti squash and yellow squash noodles too.

There are a couple of ways that you can make noodles with vegetables. 

2) Julienne Blade - This is a cheaper option and sometimes my go to choice.  Less clean up and works just fine when using Zucchini as a noodle in recipes.  http://www.amazon.com/Swissmar-Peeler-Julienne-Blade-White/dp/B0037105KE/ref=sr_1_22?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1346170742&sr=1-22

Serves 1

2-3 Pieces pastured bacon - Sliced into small pieces - Prather Ranch Uncured - No added sugar is my favorite. We pick ours up at the farmer's market.  I believe US Wellness Meats also sells bacon that doesn't have added sugars and can be purchased online.
1/4 small white onion - Diced
1/4c Dry white wine
1/4c Full fat coconut milk - If you can tolerate pastured cream feel free to use this instead - Native Forest is my favorite brand.  It's in a BPA free can and can be purchased at Whole Foods or cheaper on Amazon by the case.
2 - 6inch (small/medium) organic Zucchini - julienned or spiralized

2 Pastured eggs - We purchase ours from Tara Firma Farms.  Tropical Traditions also has fantastic pastured soy free eggs that can be ordered online.  Whole Foods also sells 3-4 pastured egg options.  They run around $6-8 a dozen depending on where they are purchased out in Cali.
1t Italian spices
1/4t Cracked red pepper - Optional 
Sea salt - to taste
Black pepper - to taste

  • Add bacon into cast iron or stainless steel skillet - saute for 5 min over medium heat, stirring consistently
  • Add white onion, Italian spices and cracked red pepper - saute for 3 min
  • Pour white wine into pan - Cook down for 3-5 min
  • Crack eggs into bowl and whip with fork or whisk - set aside
  • Pour coconut milk or cream - Cook down for 3-5 min

  • Add zucchini noodles - use tongs to mix together with mixture in pan.  Be sure not to make the noodles soggy by squeezing them with the tongs.  It's important to lightly toss them into the mixture for about 2-3 min
  • Pour eggs over mixture & lightly toss w/ tongs  to get egg coated on all noodles  - Cook additional 2-3 min over medium/low heat

  • Serve!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Strawberry & Chocolate Brunch Muffins w/ Homemade Lemon Marmalade

This past weekend we had our first annual Brick Oven Brunch in our back yard.  Some items were paleo, some gluten free & some non gluten.  My husband grew up in Italy and when we bought our house we invested in a brick oven to make homemade pizzas and other delicious goodies.  Since becoming paleo back in September 2011, I haven't really been able to enjoy the gluten filled pizza doughs.  This past weekend I did indulge and have a tasty gluten free pizza.  We also made some carbonara using zucchini noodles.  It turned out so good!  I wanted to make a lil something sweet for those peeps that have a lil sweet tooth to enjoy at the brunch and stumbled across a new posting from Against All Grain that helped inspire the brunch muffins for the day.

Against All Grain posted a delicious looking dessert recipe for Strawberry Shortcake cupcakes and I decided I was going to try this recipe out for a paleo-esque brunch muffin.  I ended up making a dozen of the cupcakes sans frosting.  It also inspired me to experiment and try to make chocolate strawberry muffins with the remainder of my strawberries.  They turned super moist & delicious!  I hollowed out the insides of the muffins/cupcakes and filled it with the homemade strawberry filling or lemon marmalade.  In addition I also made a caramel frosting to drizzle on top of some of them.  They all turned out fabulous!! I hope you enjoy Against All Grain recipe for the strawberry cupcakes, or my inspired recipe for strawberry & chocolate muffins.

Link to Against All Grain Recipe: http://www.againstallgrain.com/2012/08/23/strawberry-shortcake-cupcakes/

Ingredients (yields 1 dozen):
1/2c Grassfed butter
3/4c Coconut palm sugar
1T Carob powder
4 Pastured eggs - room temperature
3t Vanilla extract
1t Baking soda - Aluminum free
1/2t Sea salt
3/4c Organic strawberries - finely chopped
2 1/2c Blanched almond flour - I buy mine from Digestive Wellness.

Caramel Frosting:
1/4c Honey or maple syrup
1/4c Grassfed butter
1T Carob or Unsweetened Cacao powder
1/4c Coconut palm sugar

Strawberry Filling:
1/2c Organic strawberries - finely chopped
1/4c Honey
1/4c Grassfed butter

Lemon Marmalade:
Our marmalade is homemade from our lemon tree out back.  I don't have the exact recipe as my father in law that lives in Italy made this while he was here visiting last time.   It turned out absolutely delicious and goes very well with both types of muffins.


  • Preheat oven to 325f
  • Line muffin pan with baking cups
  • Melt butter over medium-low heat in small pot - don't let me it burn.
  • Add coconut palm sugar & vanilla extract - stir w/ whisk until slightly melted.  Be careful to not let it burn.
  • Pour into kitchen aid mixer bowl or medium bowl - using whisk tool or hand mixer.
  • Add eggs, carob powder, sea salt, baking soda & mix on medium-high until bubbles form on the top of the mixture
  • Slowly add almond flour until everything is combined together
  • Fold in strawberries gently 
  • Fill baking cups 3/4 full 
  • Place into oven for 20-25 min
  • Check with a toothpick - if no dough comes out they are ready to be removed to cool.
  • Meanwhile if you would like to put strawberry filling or caramel frosting go to the next steps. OR the muffins can be served along side honey & grassfed butter and served warm.
  • Strawberry Filling:
    • Add honey and butter and melt over medium-low heat in small pot
    • Whisk together and add strawberries and turn on low heat 
    • Continue cooking until the preserves get a little thicker and cooked down.  
  • Caramel Frosting:
    • Combine honey, coconut palm sugar, butter and carob powder into small pot over medium-low heat 
    • Melt & frequently whisk all items together until it gets a little thicker to drizzle on muffins
    • Be sure not to burn or it will taste bad!
  • Hollow out the selected muffins - fill with marmalade or strawberry filling
  • Drizzle some with caramel frosting 
  • Serve & Enjoy!!
Our outdoor oven

Ready to be served at our Brick Oven Bruch!

Soo tasty!! They went super fast!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Cool Summer's Night Chicken & Tomato Soup

I came home this evening from work and couldn't believe how chilly it was outside.  We had plans to warm up left over chicken with cauliflower mash & roasted artichokes but that didn't end up happening.  I was inspired to throw together a delicious soup with the left over chicken, a few items from our garden and some vegetables we picked up at the farmer's market this past Saturday.  We both went back for seconds because it was just that GOOD!  Enjoy!

2lbs Chicken- cubed - We used our left over chicken thigh/breast meat from our 4lb Chicken from Tara Firma Farms that we prepared in our crockpot a couple of days prior.  If you don't have left over chicken - prepare prior to use or cook in with the onions as mentioned in my first step.
1-2T Chipotle adobo sauce - Be sure to purchase a brand that does not include gluten.
1t Thai red curry paste - gluten free option
1T Virgin coconut oil or grassfed butter
1t Celtic sea salt
1/4t Smoked sea salt
1t Italian seasoning
1t Cumin
1t Chili powder
1t Onion powder
1/4t Cayenne pepper
1/4c Olive brine (optional) OR 1/4c Homemade chicken broth
4T Red boat fish sauce
3c Homemade chicken broth
1 can Native Forest full fat coconut milk  (BPA free can)
1 Medium red onion - diced
1 Medium white onion - diced
1 small basket or 2c sweet cherry tomatoes - leave whole
2c Kale - diced - from our garden
1c Swiss chard - diced -  from our garden
4 Roma tomatoes - chopped - from our garden


  • Melt coconut oil over medium heat in large stock pot
  • Add red and white onions and saute for 5min
  • Add kale and swiss chard - stir
  • Pour olive brine into mixture - stir mixture
  • Add cherry & roma tomatoes - cook for 5 min
  • Add cumin, chili powder, onion, sea salt, smoked sea salt - stir 
  • Add cubed chicken, chipotle adobo sauce & thai red curry paste -  cook for 5 min - 
  • Lower heat to medium-low
  • Add broth and coconut milk, stir and cook for 20 min uncovered
  • Add fish sauce - stir
  • Serve it up!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Chocolate Banana Walnut Brownies

4 Ripe Bananas - Mashed
4T Carob Powder
2T Cacao Powder
4-5T Grass fed Butter 
1/2c Coconut Milk - Full fat
4 Pastured Eggs
2T Vanilla Extract
1/4c Honey
1t Baking Soda
1t Cinnamon
1/4-1/2c Raw Walnuts - Chopped finely (optional)
1/4t sea salt

  • Turn oven onto 350f
  • Mash banana in a bowl
  • Add banana, grass fed butter, coconut milk, vanilla extract and honey into a pan over medium heat
  • Stir with a whisk until everything is melted 
  • Turn heat to medium-low
  • Add carob, cacao & cinnamon - whisk together until a smooth consistency has been accomplished
  • Turn off heat
  • In a medium mixing bowl - whisk together eggs, baking soda and sea salt
  • Slowly pour chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and continue whisking until mixed together completely
  • Stir in walnuts 
  • Pour brownie mixture into 13x9 inch baking dish
  • Bake for 50min-1hr
  • Let cool & serve!!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Avocado Cilantro Cream - STYLE #2

I loooove avocados!! Sometimes, I miss eating full fat sour cream when I make lettuce wraps for taco night.  That's where this delicious recipe comes in.  This one turned out so creamy & delicious and perfect as a topping for our chicken lettuce wraps tonight.  This would also taste delicious served on top of a frittata or scramble.

1 Large Avocado
2 Cloves garlic peeled
1 Pastured egg yolk
1/2 of 1 Bunch cilantro leaves
1/2-1t Organicville Sriracha (optional - adds spice)
Sea salt & black pepper - to taste
1/4c Coconut milk - full fat


  • Place avocado, garlic, cilantro, egg yolk and coconut milk into small food processor
  • Blend until smooth
  • Add sea salt & black pepper to taste
  • Enjoy!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Left Over - Carnitas Scramble

1/2-1c Left over shredded carnitas (recipe here)
1/2 Green bell pepper - diced
1/4 White onion - diced
1/4c Cherry Tomatoes - halved
2T Parsley - diced
2 Pinches Italian spices
1t Creole seasoning
Sea Salt & Black pepper to taste
1T Virgin Coconut Oil
1/8 avocado - sliced
4 Pastured eggs - We use Tara Firma Farms

Onions & Peppers
Carnitas, Parsley, Tomatoes, Tara Firma Farm Eggs, and my fancy new chef's knife!


  • Melt coconut oil in stainless steel or cast iron pan over medium heat
  • Add onion & bell pepper - saute for 5 min
  • Crack eggs into mixing bowl - whisk set aside
  • Add carnitas, Italian spices, creole seasoning, parsley - saute for 3 min
  • Add tomatoes - saute for 2 min
  • Pour eggs into scramble and stir ingredients together
  • Cook for 2-4min
  • Serve, top with avocado & EAT!
Tasty brunch/breakfast! Or dinner if you dare!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Pork Tenderloin Carnitas (easy crock pot recipe)

1.5lbs Pork tenderloin
1/3c Dry white wine
1/3c Homemade chicken broth
1T Ground coffee (decaf or regular)
1/2 Medium onion - diced
2T Sriracha (Sky Valley by Organicville - Gluten free)
1T Creole seasoning
1/2T Smoked paprika
2-3 Pinches Sea Salt & Black Pepper
2t Italian spices
4T Coconut Oil


  • Put all ingredients listed above into your crockpot on low heat for minimum of 6-7hrs (we did this batch for 10 hrs because we were at work/gym)
  • Shred w/ fork in crock
  • Melt coconut oil in frying pan over medium heat (we used our cast iron pan), and make sure the oil is hot because when you add the pork it takes the temp down.
  • Add shredded pork and crisp up stirring occasionally for about 5-10 min
  • Enjoy!! We ate ours in lettuce wraps for dinner on Tuesday night.  In the photo below I made a scramble with the left over carnitas.  SOOO tasty & easy!!

Carnitas Scramble

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Mrs. Bee's Flour less Brownies

  • 1/4-1/3c Cocoa butter (Digestive Wellness)
  • 1/4c Honey
  • 2T Unsweetened cacao powder (If you don't have cacao or carob powder but have unsweetened cocoa powder this would work too.  Just use 6T of this instead - although my recipe was not tested with this ingredient only.)
  • 3T Carob powder
  • 1/4c Grass fed butter (Kerrygold Unsalted) or Virgin coconut oil (Tropical Traditions)
  • 1T Vanilla extract (Digestive Wellness)
  • 1t Cinnamon
  • 1/4t Organic orange peel (optional)
  • 1/4c Coconut milk - full fat (Native Forest - BPA free can)
  • 1t Baking soda
  • 2 Pastured eggs (Tara Firma Farms) 
  • 2 Small pinches - Sea salt
Tools Needed:

Medium sauce pan
Measuring cup
Mixing bowl
Measuring spoons
Oven or toaster oven
9inch baking dish

  • Preheat oven to 350F
  • Line baking dish with parchment paper or coat w/ butter or coconut oil (to keep it from sticking)
  • Melt cocoa butter & grass fed butter in a sauce pan over medium heat on the stove top  
  • Add honey - Whisk until melted and blended together
  • Add cacao powder, carob powder, cinnamon, vanilla extract, sea salt & orange peel - Continue whisking until everything mixes/melts together and it becomes a thick melted gooey consistency
  • Add coconut milk - whisk until combined and smooth
  • Turn heat off on stove
  • Crack eggs into separate mixing bowl, add baking soda
  • Whisk together for 3-4min 
  • Start pouring chocolate mixture into the eggs slowly 
  • Once everything is combined pour into prepared baking dish
  • Put into the oven for 35-40 min  (Be sure not to open the oven prior to 30 min..each time you open the oven it drops the temperature 25f.  It ends up using more energy heating the inside back up again.)

  • Let cool and slice into 3-4inch squares. Makes 16-20 brownies.