Thursday, February 5, 2015

More Treats

Paleo “Reese’s Cups” (Makes 24 cups/servings) 
This dairy-, soy-, and gluten-free snack is proof that when there’s a will, there’s a way. If you’re in need of an indulgence or want to bring a conversation-starter to your next potluck, whip up these heavenly bites of chocolate and almond butter. Better yet, store a bunch in your freezer so that you can pop one to kick that next dessert temptation. And you thought Paleo was no fun! 

1 bag Enjoy Life semi-sweet chocolate mega chunks 
½ tbsp coconut ghee or coconut oil 
1-2 tbsp or ¾ cup almond butter (crunchy or smooth) 

Place a mini-muffin foil in each of 24 cups of a mini muffin baking pan. Place the pan somewhere near the stove-top so that it is convenient to transfer ingredients into the cups. Fill a small saucepan a little less than halfway with water and place on stove-top over high heat until it reaches a boil. Place a metal bowl on top of the sauce pan containing the boiling water and reduce the heat to medium. Add chocolate and coconut ghee to the metal bowl, stirring constantly while the ingredients melt together. Once melted and thoroughly mixed, carefully transfer 1 tsp chocolate to each mini muffin tin so that it fully covers the bottom. Making sure to continue mixing the chocolate often enough so that it doesn’t burn, transfer ½ tbsp almond butter to each mini muffin tin, on top of the chocolate layer. Lastly, add another tsp of the melted chocolate on top of the almond butter. Split up any remaining chocolate among the cups. Using a toothpick or your finger, gently swirl the tops of the cups so that the chocolate covers the almond butter entirely. Place the entire mini muffin pan into the freezer. The cups will be ready to eat after about 20 minutes or can be stored longer-term in the freezer.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

An Easy Appitizer

 Remove the pits from Medjool Dates

 Slice them in partially in half...stuff with goat cheese
and top with a pecan...sure to be a crowd pleaser, 

Friday, November 7, 2014

My Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 tsp Baking Soda 
1 tsp Salt 
1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract 
1 1/2 cup Semisweet Chocolate Chips 
1/2 cup Organic Coconut Oil, unrefined 
1/2 cup Grade B Maple Syrup 
2 whole Pastured Eggs 
3 cup Blanched Almond Flour  

Preheat oven to 375°F. In a medium-sized mixing bowl combine dry ingredients. In a small mixing bowl beat eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla extract with a hand mixer. Pour wet ingredients into dry and beat with hand mixer until combined. Melt coconut oil, pour into batter, and continue to blend until combined. Stir in chocolate chips. On a parchment-lined baking sheet, drop balls of cookie dough, about a tablespoon in size. Bake for 15 minutes. Let cool and serve with coconut milk.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Sticky Apple Bars

Serves: 4-6
For the toppings
  1. First make your crust. Add all ingredients for the crust to a food processor. (you may need to heat up your coconut cream concentrate aka coconut butter)
  2. Put crust ingredients in an 8×8 or 9×9 glass baking dish, press down until evenly distributed.
  3. Now heat up a large skillet under medium heat. Add your coconut oil then your sliced apples.
  4. Once apples begin to become soft, add your walnuts. Be sure to continuously stir so the apples and walnuts do not burns.
  5. Once apples are wilted, add your honey and coconut cream concentrate along with cinnamon and salt.
  6. When all ingredients are incorporated, pour mixture on top of crust and press flat. Put in the fridge to harden for 30-45 minutes.
  7. Cut into squares and serve!!

Paleo Tex-Mex Hash

Paleo Tex-Mex Hash

2 sweet potatoes
1 teaspoon coconut ghee/or oil
1 sweet onion chopped
1 pound grass fed beef
1 ½ teaspoons Himalayan pink sea salt
1 teaspoon minced garlic
½ jalepeno
1 -4 oz can  green chilies (drained)
1 ½ teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon paprika
¼ teaspoon cayenne

Shred potatoes into noodle like strips with a grater, Julienne peeler or “Zoodler”.

Add coconut ghee or oil (and possibly olive oil) to a large sauté pan over medium heat and once melted add the chopped onion. Once the onions become translucent add the ground beef and ½ teaspoon of the salt and cook until most of the meat is no longer pink. (It’s important not to overcook the meat because it will be overdone but the time the entire dish is finished cooking)

Add Garlic, chopped jalapenos, chilies and spices (including the remaining salt) to the pan.

Mix all ingredients into the pan, stirring in a handful of the sweet potatoes at a time.

Cover the pan let cook for 5 minute, repeat the process as needed until the sweet potatoes are the desired softness.

Topping suggestions:
Eggs, Avocado, guacamole, chopped tomatoes or salsa. (Cheese if you like dairy-not Paleo)

Nutrition facts (per serving) 335 Calories, 22g protein, 20g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 18 g fat

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

10 Ways to Make Eating Gluten-Free Easy: written by Jennifer Fugo

One of the biggest hurdles to making any diet change is actually doing it. Whether it's finding a new job, trying a new movement at the gym or deciding to clean up your diet, the act of DOING IT is typically where people either get stuck.  That problem is no different for those who decide to give a gluten-free diet a try.

When I was diagnosed with gluten sensitivity in 2008, I was given 3 websites to help me and wished good luck. I went from a fairly traditional Italian diet of pasta and bread to one that slowly evolved into something much healthier today.  The point is that my transition didn't happen overnight, but is the culmination of many baby steps taken each day... which mirrors the phrase I always tell clients -- "Rome wasn't built in a day". 

If you're really serious about eating better (and reducing or entirely removing gluten), start by learning the basics of what gluten is and where it hides out.  Talk to others who've done it and see what two or three steps really helped them make a change and see if your significant other or a friend will do this with you.  Remember that taking stock of the new landscape to which you're headed will make the transition easier.

Here's a few points that I find often help people make eating gluten-free easier:

1) Know the basics about where gluten hides. Typically gluten exists in foods that contain any part or derivative of barley, rye, oats (which aren't automatically gluten-free), wheat and spelt. To remember this, use the acronym BROWS.  Granted the list of grain and cousins of wheat is longer than this, but these are the most typical problem areas you'll encounter and can make explaining to people where gluten comes from a lot easier.  Also, be aware that the label "wheat free" does not mean "gluten free" since gluten is found in more than just wheat.

2) Focus on foods that are naturally gluten-free.  Most everything in the produce aisle is gluten-free.  Meats, fish, nuts, seeds... all are as well.  Unless you've got celiac disease or you know you're gluten sensitive, then looking for a gluten-free label isn't as important and can often lead to having blinders on to the food that just happens to be gluten-free.

3) Plan your meals. I know... it's not sexy.  Meal planning isn't something that will make you jump up and down with joy, but it is a life skill that will not just ensure you'll have food on hand for your week, but can also save you a ton of money since on average people throw out about 25 to 40% of the food they buy.  That waste is literally throwing money in the trash, my friends.  If you want to see what a meal plan looks like, you can download this free resource or my book that guides people step-by-step through the process. 

4) Make the recipes come to you! Sign up for newsletters or updates from sites you love so that new recipes are sent to you rather than having to search for them. Create a folder in your inbox just for them and drop in those that sound good to make later.  Before you know it, you won't need to search for them when you're meal planning, except when you don't have one, you can...

5) Ask Google questions about food. If you don't have a recipe in your inbox or bookmarked on your computer, use Google to search for something. I'd recommend adding the word "paleo" to the search because most "gluten-free" recipes are loaded with so many weird and unnecessary ingredients that your head will spin.  If you want to make chili, type in "paleo beef chili recipe" and plenty of options will come up.  To make it gluten-free (which is less restrictive than paleo), add in rice and beans.

6) Enjoy your social life and dine out easily! Use apps like "Find Me Gluten-Free" and search for restaurants no matter where you are that cater to gluten-free diners like yourself. Depending on how strict you need to be will determine how much research you may want to do about a restaurant before eating there.  An easy go-to-option is typically a salad with grilled, baked or broiled protein on top.  Beware of anything fried because unless a restaurant has a dedicated fryer (which most do not), whatever comes out of it is contaminated with gluten even though something like tortilla chips (made from corn) or real potato french fries inherently don't contain gluten.

7) Replace the gluten intelligently. If you love bread, try making your own paleo bread instead. Elana's Pantry has some great (and easy) recipes. Use lettuce or collard greens to create a wrap. You can also try rice wraps, large nori sheets, or even paleo wraps made from coconut.  Pasta can be replaced with gluten-free versions (there are plenty on the market), but consider buying a spiralizer and making your own pasta from sweet potatoes or zucchini which cooks in minutes.  Try making pizza crust from cauliflower and substitute flour with more nutrient dense options like coconut or almond.

8) Get (and use) the appliances that actually save you time. Start using a crockpot to cook food overnight or while you're at work. (No, it won't burn your house down)  A rice cooker is great (which can be purchased for about $17 from Target) and can cook rice and other gluten-free grains without much attention required of you. High-speed blenders, though expensive, are well worth their weight in gold because of how much they can do so quickly.  You can make soft serve ice cream, non-dairy milks, coconut milk, flours, soups, smoothies, etc. in these incredibly powerful machines.

9) Beware of anything that ends up on your mouth. That means you should check your lipsticks, glosses and balms. Gluten is a common ingredient in these products because it helps provide the consistency we as consumers are used to.  Even though these items are applied to the outside of your mouth, you will end up eating it. Also swap out your dental products such as toothpaste, mouthwash and floss for those without gluten.  Again... if it goes in your mouth, you will end up ingesting gluten if it's present in the product.

10) Have fun! Make dinner dates with friends who are interested in or on board with your new way of eating. Cooking with others is a great way to learn and enjoy new dishes. Buy one new spice each week, google how to use it (or get The Spice Bible and learn how to pair spices properly), and start making flavorful dishes that you and your family love. Eat foods that you actually like and slowly build upon them giving yourself permission to try new ones with an open mind. 

About Jennifer:
She is the founder of Gluten Free School and teaches gluten-sensitive individuals simple, savvy and empowering steps to get healthy. Living gluten-free since early 2008 after a gluten sensitivity diagnosis, she knows what it's like to feel overwhelmed by the cost and seemingly complicated aspects of going gluten-free. A sought-after expert, advocate & speaker about healthy, gluten-free living, Jennifer has been featured on Dr. Oz, Yahoo! News, eHow, CNN, and Philadelphia Magazine and is the author behind the ground-breaking book "The Savvy Gluten-Free Shopper: How to Eat Healthy without Breaking the Bank".

Monday, June 2, 2014

Two Ingredient Pancakes…Gluten Free, Flourless, & Full of Protein

Mash 1 ripe banana well, add in 1 egg  

Warm non stick or cast iron pan to medium, use coconut oil or butter or non-stick spray of choice. Cook silver dollar size pancakes 30 seconds on each side and serve.

Serve with fresh berries, this was easy and delicious!