Paleo Friendly&Fabulous
 
This recipe has been much requested – so here it is.  I am very excited to share
this one as I consider Paella to be my “signature dish”.  Paella is something my family always serves on very special occasions. We would always have Paella for Noche Buena on Christmas Eve.  I learned how to make paella during a visit
to Madrid many years ago.  I was staying with my aunt, Chelito, who invited her good friend tita (means aunt in Spanish) Maripaz to come and teach me how to make an authentic paella mixta.   It has since then become my signature, showstopper of a dish for Holidays and parties. 

This however, is my paleo friendly and fabulous version.  It has all the yummy comforting  flavors of my paella but I substitute cauliflower for short grain rice for a healthier one pot meal.

*My recipe for basic cauliflower rice is on a previous post.
Ingredients:
  • 3/4 cup - 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup clam stock (use all chicken broth if you omit seafood)
  • 8  littleneck clams, scrubbed clean
  • 8 - 12 mussels, scrubbed clean
  • ½ pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 ounces chorizo sausage, casing removed and crumbled (homemade or nitrate free)
  • 4 chicken thighs, cubed (boneless and skinless)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. organic tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon cracked pepper
  • 16 cups cauliflower rice (see recipe from a previous post)
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley
  • lemon wedges for garnish
Directions:
1. Prepare cauliflower rice.  Set aside

2. Bring the remaining broth to a boil, then add the clams and mussels. Cover and cook for 6-7 minutes, until the shells have opened up. Discard any that haven’t opened. Remove the shellfish with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the
shrimp to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, until pink. Set aside with the shellfish.

2. Combine the chicken stock and clam juice in a saucepan set over medium heat. Keep warm while you cook the meat.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add
the chicken pieces and sausage. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to brown the chicken on all sides.  Remove from pan and set aside.

4. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil then add onion, garlic, tomatoes, salt, tomato paste, paprika, pepper, and saffron. Continue to sauté for another 7 minutes until the onions have softened.

5. Pour ¾ cup of the broth mixture into the skillet, stirring to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Stir in the cauliflower rice and simmer for 5 - 10 minutes.  Since the rice is cooked already this should not take long.
 
6. When most of the juices have evaporated, nestle the shrimp, clams, and mussels into the paella. Cook for another 10
minutes then remove from the heat. Let the paella stand for 10 minutes before serving.
 7. Sprinkle the parsley over the top and serve each dish with a lemon wedge.  Paella is best with a squeeze of fresh lemon right before eating




 

 
 
Guinataan which means to braise in coconut is considered a dessert in the Philippines but in my family, we have this for merienda - a light snack between lunch and supper.  To me, this is comfort food as it is a stew of mixed root crops such as yams or kamote as we call them, fruit and other goodies in coconut milk.  It is 'the other goodies" that fall into the forbidden Paleo ingredients list like glutinous rice, sugar, tapioca pearls and jackfruit syrup.  The other ingredients fortunately are paleo compliant - coconut milk, yams, (I use purple and the Korean variety which is more yellow than orange) taro root, ripe plantains and jackfruit if you can find them fresh.

As I was eating my chia pudding (recipe for that in a future blog) for breakfast recently, I was thinking how it looked and resembled tapioca pearls once they have been soaked in some liquid -I use almond milk to soak my chia. That thought led me to think about guinataan and how I could make a paleo version by substituting chia pudding for tapioca balls and eliminating the sugar and the glutinous rice.

This version is definitely less sweet but it still has all the flavors I remember from my childhood and my vacations back home.

Ingredients:
2 cans full fat coconut milk
2 medium size purple yams, diced
2 medium size Korean yam (I get mine from an oriental grocery store.  Regular yams will do), diced
1 taro root, diced
2 very ripe plantains, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/2 cup chia pudding (soak 1 TBSP chia seeds in 1/4 cup almond or coconut milk overnight)
1 can Unsweetened pineapple chunks (I used this in place of fresh jackfruit as it is not readilly available)

Directions:
1. In a deep saucepan, combine coconut milk and the juice 1 can pineapple.  Bring to a boil.
2. Bring to a simmer and add the yams, taro root and plantains.  Simmer for about 15 minutes until tender.
3. Add the chia pudding and pineapple chunks. Mix  and simmer for another 5- 10 minutes to allow the flavors to come together.
4. Serve immediately

*To my Filipino friends, enjoy this healthier version of guinataan!


 
 
I have come to the realization that there are many people who want to eat good, real and healthy food – they just don’t want to or have the time to make it thus my Paleo friendly&fabulous delivery service is  born.   It happened by
accident  when Marianne, a co-worker doing the whole30 program with me, asked if she could pay me to make her the
same pff and whole30 meals I was eating.  I said, “sure” brought her a container of Thai Basil Beef the following
day, took a photo, posted it on Instagram  & Facebook with the #pfflifestyle’sfirstdelivery and viola – a business is born.  

I went from having 1 client, Marianne the first week to 5 the second week to 10-15 regular clients depending on what's for delivery, today.   Whether it is from folks that are very much into health and fitness, people on the whole30 or Paleo diet/program or those just wanting to eat healthier, I’ve seen a tremendous request from people wanting to subscribe to my service.   I am still getting regular inquires for my delivery but unfortunately I cannot handle more than 10-15 meals per delivery.

This is all very new and exciting.  I love cooking and preparing beautiful and healthy meals.  I love that I am able to share my passion for a Paleo friendly&fabulous lifestyle with my clients - through at least the nutrition aspect.  As one Paleo pundit put it – “Paleo is a great diet, the only problem is one has to cook”… there are no shortcuts to eating real food where nothing is processed, I suppose that is why I am attracting potential clients interested in a delivery servicce of delicious and healthy meals made from organic produce and organically and pasture raised protein sources.

Who knows where this business venture will take me. Perhaps a Pff cooking show on You Tube or even a Paleo Food Truck -  I think the possibilities are endless.  For now I am going to enjoy the ride and continue to inspire people to change their relationship with food one Paleo friendly&fabulous meal at a time. 


 
 
Picture
Spaghetti Bolognese
Fall is in the air and for me that means cooking my ultimate favorite comfort food, Spaghetti Bolognese.

Usually it is a labor of love that takes 4 hours of simmering and reducing to extract as much flavor from
the ingredients so you get a very rich and meaty ragu.  In this Paleo Friendly&fabulous quick version, I’ve reduced the
cooking time to an hour and a half and I am doing away with the red wine, the 1 tablespoon of sugar I add to counteract the acidity of the tomatoes,  the cheese (parmigiano reggiano) and the heavy cream.  Instead I am using beef stock preferably homemade if you have the time to make it, organic no sugar added dates, nut cheese and almond milk as replacements.

My Bolognese sauce is a family favorite  so I was a bit worried  my husband would be able to notice a  difference in the flavor profile.  He had three helpings of this recipe and even enjoyed it with the spaghetti squash I served in place of pasta.  So here it is and hope you enjoy this pff and healthier version too.

Ingredients:
1 large onion, diced
2 large carrots, cut into ½ inch dice
3 ribs celery cut into 1 inch dice
4 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp. EVOO for the pan
Kosher salt
1 lb. ground beef, 1 lb. ground veal, 1 lb. ground pork
1 1/2 cup tomato paste
3 cups beef broth, preferably home made or store bought no sugar added beef broth
3 bay leaves
1 bunch  fresh thyme tied in a bundle
¼ cup almond milk
½ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1 spaghetti  squash (see previous post on Pad Thai for roasting instructions)
Crumbled Nut Cheese (optional -  recipe below)
EVOO for finishing

Directions:
1. Make your sofrito by pureeing the onions, celery, carrots and garlic in a food processor.

 2. Heat a large pan over medium heat, coat pan with oil.  Add the sofrito and season generously with salt. Bring the pan to  medium-high heat and cook until all the water has evaporated and they become nice and brown, stirring
frequently, about 15 to 20 minutes.  Be patient, this is where the big flavors develop.

3. Add the ground meats and season again generously with salt. BROWN THE MEAT! Brown food tastes good!  Don't rush this step.  Cook another 15 to 20 minutes.

4. Add the tomato paste and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes.  Add 1 cup of the beef stock. Cook until the broth has reduced by half, another 4 to 5 minutes.

5. Toss in the bay leaves and the bundle of thyme and stir to combine everything. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally.  As the broth evaporates add another cup of beef stock, continue to simmer until the broth has
evaporated in half.  Add the final cup of beef stock,  mix and let it continue to simmer until most of the
liquid has evaporated.  This is where big rich flavors develop.  If you try to add all the stock in the beginning
you will have boiled meat sauce rather than a rich, thick meaty sauce. Stir and TASTE frequently. Season with salt, if needed (you probably will).  Simmer for 30-45 minutes.

6. Finish ragu with ¼ cup almond milk and some freshly grated nutmeg.  Stir to combine.  Serve
immediately on top of spaghetti squash or faux zucchini noodles.  Top with crumbled toasted nut
cheese.


Nut Cheese
Place 1 cup raw cashews in a bowl , add 4 cups water  and let soak for 6 hours covered.

Rinse cashews until water runs clear.  Place cashews in a food processor with 1 Tbsp. lemon juice, 1 tsp. sea
salt and ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil.  Puree until smooth and has the consistency of ricotta. 
You may need to add more lemon juice, salt to taste and olive oil until you get the right consistency.  It
should be spreadable.

Spread a thin layer of nut cheese on a baking sheet lined with a silicon mat and broil in the oven for 5 minutes or until it turns golden brown and dark brown at the edges.  You need to watch this so as not to burn the
cheese.

Let it cool for 15 minutes and crumble - use as topping in place of parmigiano reggiano


 
 
 
Picture
Cauliflower Rice
My Now  Love Affair with Rice (Cauliflower that is…)

“Hello Cauliflower!”  it’s nice of you to come and play Rice for me today”.  Yes, this versatile vegetable is now my
substitute for rice, mash potato and even Alfredo sauce.  Filipino dishes served best with garlic fried rice are now back on the menu along with some of my childhood favorites like Arroz a la Cubana (recipe posted on 8.31.2014) and the ever so popular Filipino Adobo and rice.  Paella, my signature dish, is no longer relegated to "special occasion" only
status -  recipe for that will be posted soon, but something the family can enjoy more often with cauliflower rice as a healthier and less filling, not to mention less carb alternative.

Ingredients:
1 head cauliflower or 1 2 lb. bag of Cauliflower florets from Costco 
11/2  tablespoon coconut oil, melted
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425F.  Cover a large, rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
2. Break the cauliflower into florets, removing the stems. Place the florets in the food processor bowl and pulse until the cauliflower looks like rice.  If your food processor has a grater attachment, use this and feed the florets into the food processor instead.  This takes about 10 to 15 one-second pulses. You may need to do this in two batches to avoid
overcrowding.
3.  Place the cauliflower rice in a large bowl, add the melted coconut oil, salt and pepper.  Toss
with two wooden spoons until the rice is coated with the oil. Spread in a single layer on the baking sheet and roast until tender and beginning to get a few brown spots, about 2o minutes.
4.  Serve with anything that needs a lovely bed of rice or use as rice substitute for
fried rice, risotto and even paella (Those recipes to come later)


  


 
 
Arroz a la Cubana was  one of my favorite dishes growing up as a
child in the Philippines.  Like most Filipino dishes, there are many
versions and variations to this dish but in my home, ground beef was always
the base and it was always served with steamed white rice, fried plantains and
topped with a fried egg.  To stay true to my #pff lifestyle and to
make whole30 compliant, these are the substitutions I made...

Cauliflower rice in place of regular steamed rice
Grass Fed and organic ground beef for regular beef
Coconut and or avocado oil for frying and sautéing
Organic and free range eggs
I make sure that the tomato paste and the raisins have no added sugar in them

Picture
Arroz a la Cubana
Ingredients:
2 lbs. grass fed and organic ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 large sweet potato, diced
1 Tbsp. coconut oil
4 Tbsp. no sugar added tomato paste
1/2  cup no sugar added beef broth
1/2 cup no sugar added golden raisins
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add 1 Tbsp coconut oil and swirl to coat pan.  Add the onions, crushed red pepper and a pinch of salt  to the pan and sauté for about 3 min.  Add the garlic and stir for 30 sec until fragrant.

2. Add the sweet potatoes and red bell pepper, sauté for about 5 min.  Add the tomato paste and stir to combine for about 2 min.  

3. Crumble the ground beef into the pan with your hands or wooden spoon and saute until the beef and the sweet potatoes are cooked through.   Add the raisins and the beef broth. Simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated but not dry.  Salt and  pepper to taste.

*If Serving with Fried Plantains:
Peel and slice 2 ripe plantains to 1/8 of an inch thick.
Heat a non - stick pan with about 1 cup avocado oil.
Fry plantains until golden brown on both sides.

*For Cauliflower Rice:
Here are a  few cauliflower rice recipes to peruse.  You can find many on Goolge.
http://ohmyveggies.com/how-to-make-cauliflower-rice/
http://nomnompaleo.com/post/1626071845/another-simpler-version-of-cauliflower-rice

 *Top with a perfectly cooked sunny side up if you desire. 
Enjoy!  It's breakfast meets dinner!

*I actually added minced celery to this recipe as I had some that needed to be
used - it did not take away from the flavor but I typically don't add celery
when I make this.
 
 
First posted on 7.2.2014
The recipe I was most excited to try from the Well Fed cookbook was Bora
Bora Fireballs.  Let me tell you - they did not disappoint!  With
flavors like pineapple, succulent pork and sweet coconut - it made me think of
Palm Trees, Tiki Torches and Ocean Breezes - what's not to be excited about!
 Juicy, spicy, meaty and sweet - these meatballs are addictive.  I
especially love the nice crunch the coconut breading gives you when you first
take a bite.  I've made this 3 times now during my whole30 experiment.
 I brought some to work and as an appetizer to my gym's summer palooza
party recently and now the recipe is being requested.
Picture
Bora Bora Fireballs
I concocted my own special dipping sauce to go with this recipe.

 Ingredients:
1 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 tsp. plus 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. plus 3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 cup crushed pineapple, no sugar added, packed in its own juice
2 T coconut aminos (I buy these from Amazon to replace soy sauce )
1 1/2 tsp. dried ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 scallions, white and green parts very thinly sliced
1/2 fresh jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, finely minced
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 lbs. ground pork

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.  Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper
or aluminum foil.  Heat a large non stick skillet over med - high heat,
then add the coconut.  Toast, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until
golden brown, about 3 min.  Remove from heat and sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. salt
and 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper.

2. Drain the cup of canned pineapple in a sieve
placed over a bowl to catch the juice.  Press the pineapple pulp against
the sieve with the back of a spoon to extract the excess moisture.  Place
the pineapple in a large mixing bowl and save the juice for later.

3. To the pineapple, add 1/2 tsp. salt, 3/4 tsp. cayenne, coconut aminos, ginger,
garlic, scallions, jalapeño and eggs.  Beat with a wooden spoon until
combined.  With your hands, crumble the pork into the bowl and knead until
all the ingredients are incorporated.  (at this point I usually will take a
small piece and cook it in the microwave to test my seasonings - season
according to taste by adding more salt if needed)

*Now comes the fun part

4. Arrange the bowls of pineapple juice, spiced toasted shredded
coconut, and seasoned pork for easy access.  Measure a level tbsp. of pork
to make a meatball, lightly douse it in the pineapple juice, then roll it in the
coconut, pressing the coconut shreds into the meat by rolling the ball between
your palms.  Do not overdo it with the breading!  Line up the
meatballs on the prepared baking sheet, about 1/2 inch apart.

5. Slide the meatballs into the oven and bake for 25-30 min, until sizzling and golden
brown.

Serve with my special dipping sauce

Ingredients:

Left over crushed pineapple
Juice of 1 orange
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup left over juice of pineapple
1 Tbsp ghee or clarified butter (To
clarify butter, melt unsalted organic butter in a pan until it runs clear and
you will see the milk solids separate from the fat - strain the milk solids with
a fine sieve and you will be left with clarified butter)

Directions:

1. Puree all of the ingredients except for the ghee in a blender or food processor.
2. Heat a small saucepan over med-high heat.  Add 1 tbsp. ghee or
clarified butter to the pan.  After about 30 sec. add the pureed pineapple. 
Stir to combine and add 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper. 
3. Bring to a boil then lower heat and continue to simmer until sauce begins
to thicken about 7-10 min.  Mix in 2 tsp. of apple cider vinegar.
4.  Remove from heat and transfer to a small bowl.  Serve with meatballs. 

 
 
This is long overdue as this #pff  paleo friendly&fabulous Pad Thai has now become
 a weekly staple in my household.  It starts with what Melissa Joulwan calls her Sunshine Sauce. 
Thank you for this Melissa as I love peanut butter anything! 
One of my concern when I started my whole30 and transitioning to a
Paleo lifestyle in general,  was giving up peanut butter.   I could eat PB off a spoon and call it a meal. 
Not to mention any type of peanut sauce for dipping veggies or any type of satay.   
Naturally, one of the recipes I wanted to try immediately from the Well Fed cookbook was Sunshine Sauce. 
This is AMAZING!!!!  Use this as a dipping sauce or use this for making Pad Thai – Just try
it!  It is that good!

Picture
Ingredients: Sunshine Sauce adapted from Well Fed
 
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced (about 1 teaspoon)
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon coconut aminos (this is a substitute for soy sauce and I
get it from Amazon)
1/4 tsp. powdered ginger
1/2 tsp. rice vinegar
1/4 cup sunflower seed butter (I like Organic Sunbutter no sugar added)
dash ground cayenne pepper (optional)
1/4 cup coconut milk

Directions:
1. Place all the ingredients except the coconut milk in the bowl of a food processor and whirl
until well blended.
2. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber scraper, then add the coconut milk.
Process until it’s blended and smooth. Store covered in the fridge if not using immediately.
3. Use in Pad Thai or as a satay dipping sauce.

Note:
The organic Sunbutter contains ONLY roasted sunflowers seeds, so if you’re
very committed to avoiding added sugars, go for the organic. 






PictureRoasted Spaghetti Squash
Next up, you have to prepare your faux noodles. 
I like to use spaghetti squash and I like to roast mine al dente.   I roast the spaghetti squash at 375 degrees for 35 min.  You may cook
it longer  if you prefer a softer  texture. This can be prepared ahead
of time and kept in the refrigerator until ready for use. 
Zucchini is another great faux noodle substitute. 
Either green or yellow will work but you will need a julienne peeler
 or a spiralizer to slice through the zucchini making them look like spaghetti strands. Don’t include the seeds if using a julienne peeler as this will make for watery noodles.


 

Ingredients: Basic Zucchini Noodles Adapted From The Clothes Make The Girl
4 zucchini, julienned with a julienne peeler or spiralizer (about 4 cups)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
salt and ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:
1. Place the julienned zucchini in a colander or wire strainer and toss generously with salt until the
strands are lightly coated. Allow the zucchini to sit for 20-30 minutes to remove excess water. Rinse with running water, drain well, and pat dry with paper towels. Now you have two choices: go directly to step 2 or… for
absolutely al dente noodles that do not get mushy, return the noodles to the colander and place in the fridge, uncovered, for 1-2 hours. This allows the strands to dehydrate even further.

2. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat and add the prepared zucchini noodles.
Sauté them in the dry pan until just tender, about 1-2 minutes.  Reduce the heat to low and drizzle the olive oil over the noodles, stirring gently to coat the strands. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Skip this step if you
are using Zucchini as your faux noodles for Pad Thai

PRO TIP! You can julienne and sweat the zucchini in advance, then store raw
noodles in a covered container in the fridge for 4-5 days. Quick pasta whenever
you need it!


PicturePad Thai Fixings
You’ve got the sauce and the noodles, now for the other
components – protein and veggies.   You can use chicken, ground pork,
shrimp or keep it vegetarian.   For veggies, I like to use sugar snap peas, red bell peppers for that pop of color and I garnish with cilantro, chopped cashews  and spring onions.    
There is quite a bit off prep work involved in making a #pff Pad Thai so this is definitely a weekend meal or you can do what I do which is to “prep”  on
a Sunday so I can just put it all together  for a quick stir fry on a weekday.   I can assure you that it is worth all the work plus you can enjoy a serving or two of this dish and not feel like you are in a “food coma” afterwards.


Picture
#pff Pad Thai
Ingredients: for Paleo Pad Thai, serves 2 
 
1 batch Sunshine Sauce
2 large eggs
2 tsp. coconut aminos
2 tsp. plus 1 tsp. coconut oil
1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
1 cup snap peas, thinly sliced lengthwise
2 cups cooked spaghetti squash (I typically use 1 med –large size spaghetti squash) or Zucchini noodles
6-8 ounces grilled chicken thighs, diced or 1lb cooked ground pork (Sauteed with some onions until
brown and cooked)

Directions:
1. Crack the eggs into a small bowl, and use a fork to scramble them with the coconut aminos. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, about 3 minutes. Add 2 teaspoons coconut oil  to the skillet, and when it’s melted, pour in the
eggs and let them spread like a pancake. Reduce the heat to medium and cover with a lid, letting the eggs cook until they’re set and beginning to brown on the bottom, about 3-4 minutes. Flip and lightly brown the other side. Remove the
eggs from the pan and cut into strips with a sharp knife.

2. Using the same pan, increase heat to medium-high and add 1 teaspoon coconut oil to the pan. Sauté the onion and snap peas, stirring with a wooden spoon, until they’re crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Add the spaghetti
squash, chicken, and cooked egg to the pan and, stirring with a wooden spoon, cook until heated through, about 3 minutes.

3. Add the Sunshine Sauce to the pan and stir-fry until everything is well-blended and hot. Divide among 2 bowls, sprinkle with your garnish du jour and enjoy!

Top your Paleo Pad Thai with any or all of these:
  • chopped cashews, almonds, or sunflower seeds
  • chopped scallions
  • chopped cilantro
  • a squeeze of lime
  • red bell pepper strips
     

 


Picture
#pff Pad Thai served Family Style
 
 
I first posted this on 6.26.2014. 
El Minzah is the famed five star hotel in Tangier  frequented by famous
poets, Hollywood actors, dignitaries and politicians since it opened it's doors
in 1930.  It is still considered the most prestigious hotel in North Africa
and I believe this salad is still being served to this day.  I've actually been to Tangier,  for a quick
day trip while on holiday in the southern coast of Spain, but I have not had the pleasure of visiting this hotel.

The combination of  sweet orange, cool mint, salty olives, crunchy &
slightly sweet fennel feels like a party with Moroccan flavors in your mouth.
 It is the perfect summer salad to complement any of your grill-tastic
recipes.
So I digress a bit from Melissa Joulwan's recipe by adding a slaw of sweet kale,
brussel sprouts, cabbage and radicchio from a pre-made mix I bought at Costco.
 You can certainly make your own slaw but I love this particular Sweet Kale
Salad mix.  It added a nice bite and crunch along with the fennel.
Ingredients:
4 - 5 large seedless oranges
1 cup slaw mix 
1 fennel bulb, sliced thinly with a mandolin 
1/4 medium red onion, very thinly sliced
1 cup large black olives, pitted and cut in half
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 clove garlic minced
salt & black pepper to taste
4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Fennel fronds, minced, for garnish

Directions:

1. Use a sharp knife to peel oranges, removing all of the
bitter white pulp and the membrane on the outside of the orange sections.
 with your fingers, separate the sections and cut them into 1-inch pieces.
Place in a large bowl.

2. Remove the fronds from the fennel and reserve some
for garnish.  Cut the ends off the fennel bulb and slice it very thinly,
crosswise or use a mandolin which is what I do.  Add the fennel, onions,
olives, slaw mix, and mint to the oranges.  Gently combine with a rubber
scraper.

3. In a bowl, whisk together lemon juice, paprika, cayenne,
coriander, garlic, salt and pepper.  Add the oil in a slow drizzle,
whisking continuously.  Pour the dressing over the oranges and toss gently
to blend.  Let the flavors meld for about an hour before serving.
 Taste and adjust seasonings,  fill the hallowed oranges with the salad mix, then top with minced fennel fronds.

Enjoy!

Picture
El Minzah Orange Salad
 
 
Picture
Who can relate to one of these scenarios?
It's girls night out at your favorite GNO restaurant.  

1. You are with a bunch of your BFF's and when it comes time for dessert, you order one with 6 spoons to share.
2.  You are having date night and you split a dessert with your significant
other.
3.  Watching your calories, you forgo dessert altogether.

 Personally the first 2 scenarios happen a lot because let's face it, just
like most, I like to end my meals with something sweet.  
 

Now it's possible to have your "cake" in this case a fruit crisp or
cobbler, and eat it too with this #pff recipe - which I tweaked a bit - from the
Well Fed cookbook. 


Are you ready for this?  No Sugar, no Dairy and no Grains!  This
peach crisp is everything you expect from a crisp/cobbler - warm, tender, sweet
chunks of fruit - crumbly, nutty, cinnamon-scented topping - the very definition
of a perfect summer dessert.  


Picture
Peach & Almond Crisp
Try this recipe for your next barbeque.   Trust me, you will want seconds
and you know what - it is perfectly okay!
 
Ingredients:
 6 peaches, cut into 1/2 inch dice (about 6 cups)
1 tsp lemon zest
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 3/4 cup almond flour
12 dried organic, no sugar added,  pitted dates
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1.4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp coconut oil chilled until solid, then diced
1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds
 
Directions:
 1. Preheat oven to 350 F
 2. In a medium bowl, mix the peaches, lemon zest and lemon juice with a wooden
spoon. Allow to rest at room temperature while you prepare the topping.
 3. Place almond flour, dates, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a food processor.
 Pulse until combined.  Sprinkle the chilled diced coconut oil over
the flour and pulse about 10 times then process on high for 5-10 seconds until
there are no lumps.  
4. Pour the topping into a bowl and use a fork to mix in the slivered
almonds.
 5. For an 8 inch square pan or round pie plate, pour the fruit into the pan,
pressing it gently into place with the back of a wooden spoon.  Sprinkle
the almond topping over the fruit and lightly press into the fruit with the back
of a wooden spoon or with your fingers.
6. For individual ramekins, place 6 ramekins on a baking sheet covered with
parchment paper.  Spoon generous 3/4 - 1 cup servings of the fruit into
individual ramekins (you may end up with 5 depending on the size of your
ramekins) pressing the fruit into the ramekins with your hands.  Place
about 3 Tbsp of topping onto each ramekin, gently press down to cover the fruit
with your fingers.
 7. Cover the crisp lightly with foil and bake for 30 min.  Remove foil
and bake for another 5-10 min until bubbly and browned.
 
*Refrigerate any leftovers.
 *This is best enjoyed warm and it is even better the second day warmed up
in the microwave for about a min.