Paleo Friendly&Fabulous
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.

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)

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!

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
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.  

Peach & Almond Crisp
Try this recipe for your next barbeque.   Trust me, you will want seconds
and you know what - it is perfectly okay!
 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
 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
 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.