Herbed Celery Root & Parsnip Soup

How about steepin’ out with some new veggies in 2015?IMG_2243

This soup is a light and refreshing chowder delicious on it’s own and even better with roasted fish added. Due to my delicate constitution (or delicate humors) I can’t eat onions/leeks/garlic lately but the herbs give this soup tons of flavor.

When peeling the celery root you will notice a strong celery flavor (didn’t see that coming!) but I guess I was surprised as it looks nothing like celery. It has a mild flavor that is an excellent potato substitute. Double down on the parsnip for a sweeter soup.

The herbs will come off their stem when cooking–no need to take off leaves in advance.

Ingredients:

  • Celery root, peeled and cubed
  • Parsnip, peeled and cube
  • Big bunch or fresh oregano and/or thyme
  • Kale or other green vegetable
  • Water

Directions:

  • Cover celery root, parsnip and herbs with water and bring to a boil
  • Simmer at least 45 minutes or until very soft
  • Remove stems of herbs
  • Blend with stick blender
  • Add greens and simmer until cooked through

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Paleo: Asian Inspired Chicken and Cabbage Dumplings

These tasty dumplings are delicious on their own or in a soup.IMG_4975

Ingredients (all  measurements approximate):

  • 1 pound ground organic dark meat chicken
  • 1-2 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 1-2 tablespoons red boat fish sauce
  • 1 inch chunk ginger
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 1-2 cups cabbage, chopped
  • 1-3 tablespoons arrowroot starch/flour
  • a bit of chicken broth (if needed)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Combine fish sauce, coconut aminos, ginger, garlic and cabbage in Nutribullet or food processor. Pulse until ingredients to form a paste. If it is too dry to blend-add chicken broth.
  • Pour mixture over ground chicken and add arrowroot powder and mix. It will be very sticky but if its too sticky add more arrowroot.
  • Tablespoon portions onto baking sheet.
  • Bake until done–check after 15-20 minutes.

Plantain and Spaghetti Squash Paleo Kugel

I have been having a lot of fun cooking with plantains as they offer a great alternative to all the almond and coconut flours you often see in paleo cooking.

When cooking with plantain recipes make sure you note the color that is called for. A green plantain offers a totally different consistency (more for chips/crackers) than a ripe one  –the darker the sweeter, softer and more desert like. In this recipe a ripe or an almost ripe would work best.  IMG_4917

Kugel is a traditional Jewish comfort food –often containing noodles, cinnamon and creamy dairy . Sounds delish right? But I really wanted a healthy alternative that would not put me to sleep or make me feel awful after.

To me this really tasted like a kugel–though not nearly as sweet. You may want to add raisins, vanilla or a little honey/maple syrup.

And with that I give you Plantain and Spaghetti Squash Paleo Kugel:

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe plantains
  • 1-2 cups cooked spaghetti squash
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, very soft or melted
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 1 small apple, grated
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Combine plantains and coconut oil in a blender or nutribullet. You can also mix with the back of a fork if plantains are very ripe.
  3. Put all ingredients in a bowl and mix.
  4. Add to well greased pan.
  5. Top with more cinnamon
  6. Bake @ 20-25 minutes

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(I Can’t Believe It’s) Paleo Ice Cream

When the weather heats up I find myself craving frozen yogurt (or fro-yo as my sister called it in the 80’s and probably still does). I don’t do well with the sugar not to mention all the IMG_4788preservatives they put in there. Even almond milk ice cream is loaded with additives that give me a headache. Well here is an all natural alternative: this is fruit only ice cream. And it actually tastes like ice cream–or close enough!

To make this recipe you must use a food processor–a blender or vitamix will not work.  The night before break up bananas into chunks and freeze. Make sure they are are ripe with at least a few brown spots. I used strawberries in this recipe–but we are going to try other flavor combinations such as mint/chocolate chip and cherry/rosewater.

Ingredients:

  • Two frozen bananas in chunks
  • 3-4 frozen strawberries

Directions:

  • Combine fruit in food processor and pulse for 1-2 minutes

Happy Summer!

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

Don’t let the luscious looks of this puddin’ fool you–it is a health food!  IMG_4632

Although it tastes like a treat and satiates a chocolate craving it is loaded with nutritious ingredients. It has the same light and creamy texture as traditional chocolate pudding though (prepare yourself) it is not nearly as sweet.

Mint leaves are delicious in this recipe and (ta da!) also aid in digestion. You can also add in fresh ginger or even cayenne pepper for a spicy kick.

I used my beloved Nutribullet for this recipe though a food processor should work as well.

Ingredients:

  • One avocado (or 1/2 large)
  • 1 cup almond milk (add more or less for the right consistency)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • Fresh mint leaves
  • Honey or maple syrup to taste

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients and blend

Looking for another healthy desert? Check out my Easy Apple Crumble which is gluten/dairy & sugar free.

Sweet Potato Ginger Carrot Stew

This healthy stew is full of flavor and very filling. I made it thinking of a hot breakfast but it would be great for any meal. The humble star of this stew is the highly medicinal burdock root. IMG_4069It is very mild in flavor and full of medicinal benefits.

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons corn meal
  • Sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 2 carrots peeled and diced
  • Burdock root, thinly sliced
  • Ginger, crushed through garlic press
  • Slice of lemon
  • Salt
  • Shredded cabbage

Combine all ingredients except cabbage and simmer over low heat for 30-45 minutes, until veggies are cooked and stew is desired thickness. Remove lemon slice. Top with shredded cabbage and serve.

Chicken Soup

Ideally, making chicken soup is a leisurely affair involving a bath and/or a nap. You could make it in a couple of hours–but I like to make a day out of it.IMG_3406

All you really need to make it is a big pot, a chicken, water, onion and salt. I make it differently each time depending on what I have on hand. It is a great way to cook all those extra farm box veggies and I sometimes freeze the parts I don’t use (kale ribs etc.) for this purpose. A typical recipe combination I use is listed below.

You will have many meals from this one dish: chicken dinners, sandwiches, and plenty of broth to freeze.

Ingredients:

  • One whole organic, free-range chicken (I like Mary’s Chicken)
  • Celery greens (adds a lot of flavor)
  • Onion, cut in half
  • Whole garlic, cut in half
  • Carrots
  • Burdock root (medicinal)
  • Fresh Dill and Thyme (put in spice bag or wrap in cheesecloth)
  • Greens
  • Salt

Steps:

  • Put all ingredients in stock pot, cover in water and add salt. Bring to a boil.
  • Once it reaches a boil, add more salt. You may also skim the fat off at this time.

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  • Simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.
  • Turn off heat and cover.
  • Take a nap and/or bath.
  • Allow chicken to continue to cook with heat off for 1-2 hours.
  • Remove chicken and allow to cool.
  • Scoop out vegetables with a mesh strainer and discard. Rinse out the spice bag for reuse.
  • Once cool remove from bones and shred. You can freeze the carcass for another use.

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  • Remove broth–I like to use a glass measuring cup for easy pouring.

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  • Store in glass and plastic containers for the refrigerator and freezer.

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SO Delicious: Homemade Almond Milk

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I decided to start making my own almond milk to avoid the additives in the store bought but after tasting my homemade almond milk I would make it for the flavor alone. It is light, fluffy, creamy and just scrumptious.

Good enough to be desert!

Ingredients:

  • One cup almonds
  • Four cups water
  • Teaspoon cinnamon

Soak almonds at least overnight in water in the refrigerator. 

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Rinse and put in blender with four cups fresh water.

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Blend for one minute –add cinnamon and blend for another minute.

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I got a jelly strainer bag from the hardware store and secured it over the top of the blender before carefully pouring into a bowl. I then squeezed out all the liquid. I plan on using the excess nut meat in a recipe. You can also put the contents of the blender through a cheesecloth or buy something called a “nut bag” for this purpose.

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I came out with four cups of heavenly almond milk-the same amount as a 32 ounce store bought carton.

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