Primal Gourmet http://cookprimalgourmet.com Paleo Primal and Healthy Recipes Tips and Kitchen Trips Mon, 27 Mar 2017 17:58:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.4 Braised Beef Breakfast Skillet w/ Pico de Gallo http://cookprimalgourmet.com/breakfast-skillet-whole30 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/breakfast-skillet-whole30#respond Mon, 27 Mar 2017 17:53:38 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1532 This Braised Beef Breakfast Skillet makes the most of your leftovers the next morning! Top it with Pico de Gallo and it's a Whole30 breakfast of champions!

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Remember that Whole30 Mexican Braised Beef with Sweet Potato? Remember how I told you to make enough for leftovers? I really hope you did so that you can make this epic Braised Beef Breakfast Skillet!

This skillet is an elevated riff on a Huevos Rancheros. Instead of salsa, however, I use the leftover braised beef as a bed to poach the eggs directly in. Everything gets topped with heaping spoonfuls of quick-and-easy Pico de Gallo that helps awaken all of the deep and delicious flavours in the meat. Though I am a big fan of spicy foods, I would suggest making the Pico de Gallo on the mild side because the beef should be spicy enough from all of the whole chilies you used the day before. Then again, go crazy and make it as spicy as you want. Who am I to tell you otherwise?

Essentially, this Braised Beef Breakfast Skillet is a Mexican take on Shakshuka, which is by far what I am best known for (see YouTube video with nearly 1M views!)

I should also mention that you can use just about any skillet to make this beautiful breakfast. Ballarini recently sent me a few of their pans to test out and they are great! Pictured is the Rialto model (available here: http://amzn.to/2nabkKo) which features the Thermo-Point on the handle. When the pan is hot the green dot turns red and lets you know it’s time to get cooking! You may recognize their other pans from a recent giveaway I hosted (see here for a great Chicken Stir-Fry recipe and more images of Ballarini’s other models).

Give these recipe a go and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

mexican braised beef with sweet potato recipe paleo whole 30 primal gourmet

INGREDIENTS:

For the breakfast skillet

  • 2 cups leftover Braised Mexican Beef (see here for recipe)
  • 5-6 eggs – 2-3 per person
  • 1/8 cup water

For the pico de gallo

  • 1/2 white onion – finely diced (preferably sweet variety)
  • 2 tomatoes – finely diced (red bell pepper makes a great substitute)
  • handful fresh cilantro
  • juice of half a lime
  • pinch of salt

 

METHOD:

for the pico de gallo

  1. toss all ingredients together in a mixing bowl – set aside.

for the breakfast skillet

  1. Add leftover Mexican Braised Beef and water to a skillet over medium heat and cover with a lid. Bring to a gentle simmer.
  2. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, form small holes in the beef. Crack an egg into each hole. Cover the skillet with a lid and cook eggs to your desired consistency (approximately 8-10 minutes for medium yolks and firm whites)
  3. Spoon pico de gallo overtop of the skillet and serve.
*This post was not sponsored by Ballarini nor did they have any influence over the content herein. They did, however, give me this pan for free. In the spirit of full-disclosure, this blog post contains affiliate links that provide it’s author with a small commission. You can help support Primal Gourmet by purchasing items through the links provided.

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Whole30 Mexican Braised Beef with Sweet Potato http://cookprimalgourmet.com/whol30-mexican-braised-beef http://cookprimalgourmet.com/whol30-mexican-braised-beef#respond Mon, 27 Mar 2017 17:08:43 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1520 This Mexican Braised Beef with Sweet Potato is a great way to incorporate big, bold, delicious flavours into your program. It also makes for some killer leftovers!

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This Mexican Braised Beef with Sweet Potato is a family favourite in my home! It happens to be Paleo and Whole30 so feel free to enjoy without compromising your programs.

Over the years I’ve slowly discovered a few secrets that take an already amazing dish to the next level.

My first tip is to use whole, dried chilies and to reconstitute them in stock (chicken, vegetable or beef work equally well). Don’t get me wrong, the dried stuff can be great but when it comes to producing punch-you-in-the-face-delicious-flavours they just don’t compete. It helps that Mexican chilies (ex. Ancho, Guajillo, Cascabel, Morita, etc.) are now readily available at local grocery stores. I used to have to make a special trip to a Latino market every few months to stock-up on bags full of the stuff. Not that I ever minded!

Rather than using a store-bought marinade or cans of crushed tomato, I like to blend the reconstituted chilies and the stock they steep in to make a velvety, rich and flavourful sauce to braise the beef in. This is the same technique I use to make my taco meat (which you can get the recipe for here) with ground beef and it works perfectly for just about any type of meat, be it ground or otherwise. There’s also something unbelievably rewarding in making your own sauce, never mind the fact that it is far healthier than anything from a store.

The second tip is to use well-marbled cuts of beef. Lean cuts will dry out and no matter how long you braise them they will never be as good as something with a bit of fat on it. Shoulder or chuck work well here. Same rules apply if using pork. Keep in mind, not all fats are created equal and I strongly encourage you to buy grass-fed beef or other types of meat that are raised without the use of antibiotics or hormones. In Toronto, I recommend The Healthy Butcher for meat.

I should mention that this recipe uses a traditional braising method that requires a Dutch Oven (aka French Oven or Cocotte). I love this Staub model and can honestly say that it is worth every penny if you use it as regularly as I do. Alternatively, you can use a slow cooker. If you opt for the latter, I recommend you either brown the meat before adding it to the slow cooker along with the other ingredients. Or, purchase a model that has a removable insert that can be placed directly on the stovetop (like this model from ALL-CLAD). Either way, you can’t go wrong.

My last tip is to make enough to have leftovers the next day. I’ve become fairly well-known for my epic morning-after skillets and believe me when I tell you that Mexican Braised Beef makes the ultimate breakfast skillet, which you can get a recipe for here. It’s an elevated riff on Huevos Rancheros and when served with heaping spoonfuls of simple and delicious Pico de Gallo will take you to brunch heaven!

 

Give these recipe a go and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

mexican braised beef with sweet potato recipe paleo whole 30 primal gourmet

INGREDIENTS:

3-4 pounds beef shoulder or chuck

1L stock (chicken, beef or vegetable) – substitute water if unavailable

2 medium sweet potatoes – peeled and cubed

2 dried Ancho chilies

2 dried Guajillo chilies

2 dried Cascabel chilies

2 dried Morita chilies

2 small yellow onions (approx. 2 cups loosely packed) – sliced into half-moons

7-8 cloves garlic – smashed

1 tbsp spicy Spanish paprika

1 tbsp smoky Spanish paprika

1 tbsp coriander powder

4-5 sprigs fresh thyme

1 tbsp kosher salt

Avocado oil

METHOD:

  1. Add the stock and whole-chilies to a small saucepan and bring everything to a low boil. Reduce heat to the lowest setting, cover with a lid and let steep for 15-20 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350F.
  3. Drizzle 1/2 tbsp avocado oil in a large Dutch/French oven and set over med-high heat. Dry beef with a paper towel. Brown all sides of the until the edges form a golden brown crust. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add in the onions and garlic and season with a pinch of salt. Sauté until softened, approximately 6-8 minutes.
  5. Keeping an eye on the sautéing onions, get to work on the chilies. Reserving all of the chili-infused water, deseed and discard the stems of the chilies. Transfer the chilies to a blender or food processor along with all of the chili-infused water (careful to strain the stock for all loose seeds). Blend until it forms a smooth, rich and creamy consistency. Set aside for the moment.
  6. To the onions and garlic, add paprika, smoky paprika, coriander powder, and kosher salt. Stirring constantly, toast the spices for 60 seconds.
  7. Deglaze the pot with the blended chili puree, scraping off any brown-bits that have formed on the bottom and sides of the pot.
  8. Add in the browned beef along with all of the rendered juices that have pooled at the bottom of the bowl. Add in the sprigs of fresh thyme. Bring everything to a low boil then cover with a heavy, tight-fitting lid and transfer to the preheated oven set to 350F. **Note: depending on the size of your pot you may need to add a bit of water so that beef is almost entirely submerged.
  9. Braise approximately 3 hours occasionally rotating the beef so that the top does not dry-out.
  10. Remove from the oven. Transfer the beef to a large bowl and allow to cool enough to be handle by hand. Once cooled, shred the meat by hand.
  11. Add shredded beef back to the pot along with cubed sweet potato. Return to oven for another 15-20 minutes until sweet potato is fork tender.
  12. Serve in individual bowls. Garnish with sliced avocado, diced tomato, fresh cilantro and lime wedges.

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Paleo Roasted Red Pepper and Sausage Soup http://cookprimalgourmet.com/paleo-roasted-red-pepper-sausage-soup http://cookprimalgourmet.com/paleo-roasted-red-pepper-sausage-soup#respond Wed, 08 Mar 2017 22:55:39 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1505 Necessity is the mother of all invention. This includes but is not limited to weeknight Roasted Red Pepper and Sausage Soup.

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Weeknight cooking is tough, even for someone like me who lives to cook. Between work, study, fitness, chores, walking dogs, and babysitting my newborn niece (I’m an uncle!!!!), it’s not always possible to carve out more than an hour to cook, eat and clean the dishes. That last bit’s a lie. Over the years, I have developed a serious aversion to washing dishes and prefer to leave them to my amazing wife. All the more reason to make something using a single pot or pan. After all, less clean up time for wifey equals more time for Netflix and chill 😉

So, when it came time for a Tuesday night supper, I reached for what I had in the fridge, freezer and pantry. I had a few sausages, a couple of red bell peppers, and some frozen stock that I made a few weeks ago. First instinct was to make a sausage and pepper skillet, possibly similar to this one here but I didn’t have any greens. Then again, there was always soup. Yeah, soup! It was a cold and rainy day in the beginning of March, which made all the more sense. The trick would be to roast the peppers without having to schlep outside and light the grill. Enter oven broiler (man alive, I miss my gas range)! Broiling the peppers would add a tremendous amount of flavour and also help peel of the skin, which isn’t all that pleasant in a silky smooth soup. It also makes for a great photo-op (see image of charred, blistered, Georgia O’keeffe-like peppers).

While the peppers charred under a hot broiler, I got to work by removing the sausages from their casings, and browning them in my favourite Staub Dutch Oven. Once nice and crumbly, I removed the sausage and sautéed a diced onion and some garlic, followed by a bit of tomato purée for added flavour and colour. I let the tomato sauce reduce and concentrate in flavour before adding the stock (I used chicken but vegetable works too) and bringing everything to a low simmer. Meanwhile, I peeled the charred peppers, deseeded them and added them to the soup. Using my immersion blender, which is possibly my new favourite kitchen gadget, I gave the whole thing a whirl until smooth, added back the sausage and tasted for seasoning. The sausage was salty enough but lacked spice. Sure, I could go in with a few chili flakes but where’s the fun in that? Harissa would be a welcome addition, I thought! Two tablespoons later, I realized it was a good idea! Granted, my mouth was on fire. A bit of fresh oregano helped wake everything up and garnishing it with avocado, tomato and cucumber would help me use some more stuff that might otherwise go rotten.

Altogether, a successful weeknight supper, made in about 30 minutes with minimal clean up! We went on to watch 15 minutes of Suits before I fell asleep and drooled all over my pillow.

Note: this would work equally well as a fully vegan soup. Skip the sausage and go straight to sautéing the onions and garlic. As mentioned, opt for vegetable stock instead of chicken and you’re all set!

Give this recipe a go and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

INGREDIENTS:

4 Whole30-compliant sausages (read labels or sub ground chicken, turkey, pork, beef, or lamb)

4 red bell peppers

1 cup tomato purée (preferably in a glass jar)

1 pint chicken or vegetable stock

1 medium onion – diced

3-4 cloves garlic – minced

1-2 teaspoons fresh oregano – finely chopped (or substitute dried)

Salt and Pepper to taste

Whole30-compliant harissa (spicy Tunisian red pepper paste) – optional and to taste

Garnish of choice (I like avocado, tomato and cucumber)

 

METHOD:

  1. Blacken red peppers under a broiler, on top of a gas stove or on a grill (approximately 3-4 minutes per side). Transfer to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap – set aside.
  2. Remove sausage from casing and brown in a large Dutch Oven or stock pot. Transfer cooked sausage to a bowl and sauté onion and garlic in the rendered fat until soft. Add tomato purée and cook for 3-4 minutes until slightly reduced and concentrated.
  3. Add stock and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, remove skin and seeds from roasted peppers. Roughly chop the peppers and add them to the soup. Using an immersion blender, purée the soup until smooth.
  4. Add sausage and oregano to the soup and taste for seasoning – adjust salt and pepper accordingly. Add harissa or spices of choice.
  5. Ladle into individual serving bowls, garnish with avocado, diced cucumbers and tomatoes and enjoy!

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Paleo Chicken Stir Fry http://cookprimalgourmet.com/paleo-chicken-stir-fry http://cookprimalgourmet.com/paleo-chicken-stir-fry#respond Mon, 27 Feb 2017 03:50:12 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1491 This Paleo Chicken Stir Fry takes delicious Asian sweet, spicy, sour and bitter flavours and makes them healthy by using mindful, natural ingredients. It's quick and easy, which makes it great weeknight dinner idea.

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If you’re a fan of Asian food I have a feeling you’ll love this Paleo Chicken Stir Fry. It has those spicy, sweet, sour and bitter flavours that Asian cuisine is known for but is rendered healthy by using mindful, natural ingredients. It also happens to be easy and quick, which makes it perfect for a weeknight dinner!

I learned a long time ago that when it comes to stir-fries, the secret is to have all of your meat, veggies and sauce prepared before you start cooking. It’s also very important to have the cooking heat turned way up high. Low heat will cause things to steam in the pan and that’s not the flavour we want to build here.

The Ballarini Rialto Frying Pan is absolutely perfect for this recipe. It can handle high heat cooking. The heat is well distributed throughout the pan, resulting in even cooking. The 12.5″ diameter provides extra surface area to cook things quickly and is large enough to handle a family-sized meal. I also love to serve dinner straight from the pan so it helps to have one that is presentable!

In case you didn’t know, I’ve partnered with Ballarini Canada to give away one of these pans to a lucky Primal Gourmet reader. Click here for full details. I think you’ll love it!

Give this recipe a go and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

INGREDIENTS:

For the sauce:

3 tbsp coconut aminos

2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

2 tsp fish sauce

2 tsp sesame oil

juice of half a lime

1 tsp ginger – grated

1 tsp garlic – grated

1 thai bird chili – finely chopped (deseeded for mild spice)

 

For stir-fry

2 organic, free-range, boneless, skinless chicken breasts – thinly sliced

1 medium cooking onion – diced

1 celery stalk – sliced on bias

1 red bell pepper – diced

230 gr cremini mushrooms – quartered

2 cups broccoli florets

2 thai bird chilies – finely sliced (optional depending on spice tolerance)

2 scallions – finely sliced for garnish

1/2 cup unsalted cashews

sesame seeds – for garnish

1 tbsp coconut oil

 

METHOD:

for the sauce:

  1. thoroughly combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and set aside

for the stir-fry:

  1. In a large, non-stick frying pan heat 1 tbsp coconut oil over high heat
  2. Add chicken and stir-fry until cooked through and no longer pink. Discard any rendered juices and transfer chicken to a bowl – set aside.
  3. Stir-fry onions, celery, bell pepper, mushroom, broccoli, and thai bird chilies over high heat (approx. 5-6 minutes). Add cashews and cook an additional 2 minutes.
  4. Pour in the stir-fry sauce you’ve prepared and let simmer until slightly reduced. Add the chicken back to the pan and stir everything to combine.
    • **Tip: if the sauce is too loose for your liking, mix 1 tsp arrowroot starch with 3 tsp water and add to stir-fry sauce to thicken.
  5. Garnish the Paleo Chicken Stir Fry with sliced scallions, sesame seeds and serve.

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Giveaway – Primal Gourmet x Ballarini http://cookprimalgourmet.com/giveaway-primal-gourmet-ballarini http://cookprimalgourmet.com/giveaway-primal-gourmet-ballarini#respond Mon, 27 Feb 2017 03:48:21 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1446 I'm very excited to announce that I've partnered with Ballarini Canada to give away a Rialto 12.5" Non-Stick Frying Pan. See full contest details here

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GIVEAWAY – Primal Gourmet + Ballarini 

Day(s)

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Enter Now!

Hey guys, I’ve partnered with my friends at Ballarini Canada to GIVE AWAY an amazing Rialto 12.5″ Granitium Non-Stick Frying Pan to one lucky Primal Gourmet reader! It’s PFOA, heavy metal and nickel free and is a dream to cook on! You’re going to love it!

HOW TO ENTER:

  1. Fill out the box above with your full name, email address, and Instagram handle (e.g. @User_Name)
  2. Follow @primal_gourmet @ballarini_ca on Instagram
  3. Tag two friends on the corresponding Instagram posts – on either feed

Why I love This Pan

Thermo Point Handle tells you when the pan is hot 

It’s large size can handle dinner for the family

It’s PFOA, Heavy Metal and Nickel Free

True non-stick + less cooking fat = healthier meals

Paleo Chicken Stir Fry

Once you’ve won your Ballarini Rialto frying pan, you’ll want to start cooking with it right away! To help you get the ball rolling, I’ve made an easy, delicious and healthy Paleo Chicken Stir Fry that I think you’ll love! You can get the full recipe by visiting the blog post here: Paleo Chicken Stir Fry.

See full contest terms and conditions below.

 

 

 

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

1.The promoter is: Primal_Gourmet

2.The contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Instagram, Facebook, or any other social media platform.

3.There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.

4.By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions.

5.Competition is running on Instagram and Facebook social platforms.

6.Only one entry will be accepted per person. Multiple entries from the same person will be disqualified.

7.Closing date for entry will be Sunday, February 5, 2016 at 23:59 EST. After this date no further entries for the competition will be permitted. No responsibility can be accepted for entries not received for whatever reason.

8.Contest open to person 18 years of age and older. Contest limited to Canadian residents only excluding the province of Quebec.

9.The rules of the competition and how to enter are as follows:

10. The promoter reserves the right to cancel or amend the competition and these terms and conditions without notice in any event, for any reason, or anticipated breach of any applicable law or regulation or any other event outside of the promoter’s control. Any changes to the competition will be notified to entrants as soon as possible by the promoter.

11. The promoter is not responsible for inaccurate prize details supplied to any entrant by any third party connected with this competition.

12. The prize is as follows:

The prize is as stated and no cash or other alternatives will be offered. The prizes are not transferable. Prizes are subject to availability and we reserve the right to substitute any prize with another of equivalent value without giving notice.

13. Winners will be chosen at random and notified on Monday, February 6, 2016, on Instagram.

14. All entries received must have public Instagram accounts so that each can be verified by promoter and or its agents to check that each individual entry follows @primal_gourmet and @ballarini_ca  on Instagram.

15. The winner will be notified by email and/or DM on Instagram. If the winner cannot be contacted or does not claim the prize within 7 days of notification, the promoter reserves the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner.

16. The winner (after notification) will inform the promoter and or its agents when and where the prize can be delivered.

17. The winner must agree to posting that he/she has won the contest on his/her Instagram.

18. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions.

19. The winner agrees to the use of his/her name and image in any publicity material, as well as their entry. Any personal data relating to the winner or any other entrants will be used solely in accordance with current Canadian data protection legislation and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent.

20. The winner’s name will be available 28 days after closing date by emailing the following address: info@primalgourmet.com

21. Entry into the competition will be deemed as acceptance of these terms and conditions.

 

 Primal Gourmet Paleo Recipes

 

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Holiday Gift Guide 2017 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/holiday-gift-guide-foodies http://cookprimalgourmet.com/holiday-gift-guide-foodies#respond Sun, 18 Dec 2016 20:48:41 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1410 This is my 2017 Gift Guide for Foodies and Home Cooks. Here you'll find things I can't live without and use on a daily basis. You'll also find great gift ideas for just about every budget. Rest assured, it it's on the list, I whole-heartedly recommend it.

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If you need some gift ideas for that special home cook in your life, you’ve come to the right place! Just like I did back in 2016, I’ve put together a short Gift Guide with what I consider to be kitchen essentials for even the most discerning foodie. The items I’ve selected are ones that I love, use on a daily basis, or have been lusting over. I’ve tried to be mindful of different budgets and look for gifts that are available online, mostly through Amazon, since it’s the easiest way to shop IMHO. Some of these items are available in stores, but that will depend on where you live in the world! Go forth, and shop ’till you drop! At which point get coffee and keep shopping because someone has to stimulate the economy and it might as well be you!

SLICE AND DICE

(from bottom left, clockwise)

  1. OXO Metal Tongs: Ditch the dollar store variety and invest in a proper pair of tongs. Look for something with a silicon grip, scalloped edges and a rolled underside so as to avoid accidentally pinching your skin during use.
  2. Miyabi 6” MCT6000 Gyutoh: A Japanese knife is the Holy Grail item for just about every self-respecting cook; domestic or professional. If properly maintained, regularly honed, and occasionally sharpened, a Japanese chef’s knife will last an eternity. Note that stainless steel requires less maintenance than carbon steel but the metal is not as hard and, therefore, not as sharp. This knife actually makes dicing, slicing, julienne-ing and shiffonade-ing fun.
  3. A wooden spoon: Preferably one that belonged to your grandmother and is older than you. Extra points if it was used to threaten you into doing your homework as a child.
  4. A great vegetable peeler: Look for Japanese or Swiss made that is lightweight with a broad handle and wide blade. At under $10 it is one of the best kitchen investments you can make.
  5. Opinel folding knife: carry it with you everywhere. From slicing an apple at a picnic to foraging for mushrooms, it should never leave your side.
  6. Zwilling 4-Star 8” chef’s knife: You’ll need a heavy-duty knife for larger and tougher foods like squash, sweet potatoes and just about all other root vegetables.
  7. Microplane zester: the industry standard for zesting any citrus. Also makes easy work of ginger, garlic, horseradish and just about anything else you want in your vinaigrettes.
  8. OXO Julienne peeler: effortlessly julienne vegetables in the blink of an eye. Great for anyone who is not yet fully committed to the spiralizer life but wants to know what a zucchini noodle tastes like.
  9. Fish spatula: Even if you don’t eat fish, this extra-thin spatula is a must-have for flipping delicate foods such as pesky veggie burgers.

ALTERNATIVE BREWING

(front to back)

  • Bialetti 6 cup Mocha Express ($42.00 on Amazon.ca). Often imitated, never duplicated. Bialetti’s are the benchmark for stovetop espresso makers. It’s easy to use, clean and brews a very enjoyable pot of espresso. It can be used on electric, radiant or gas heat. Considering most Bialetti’s are passed from generation to generation, it’s a steal at under $50. With the money you save on the machine you can enjoy freshly roasted beans from your favorite local café.
  • Glass French Press ($8.95 – $65.00 on Amazon.ca depending on brand): Add freshly ground beans and hot water, let it steep for 4 minutes, press and enjoy. Quite possibly the easiest manual coffee maker and with a variety of models readily available for under $20, it might be the most affordable.
  • Six Cup Classic Chemex Coffeemaker ($58.95 on Amazon.ca): An elegant hourglass design accented with a handsome wooden collar and leather tie, it is as much a statement piece as a coffee maker. Unlike the French Press, the Chemex requires a more hands-on approach. The entire process can take up to 15 minutes if you grind your own beans. However, considering the fact that it brews one of the smoothest cups of coffee you can imagine, it’s well worth the effort. It can also double as teapot or flower vase!
  • Stainless Steel French Press ($45.00 – $128.45): Exactly the same as the glass version except the double-wall stainless steel construction is virtually indestructible and keeps your coffee warmer for longer.

THE SPLURGE

Vitamix blender ($799.00 on Amazon.ca): It doesn’t have to be the 780 model pictured here, but a Vitamix blender makes a fantastic gift for anyone that will actually use it. Most blenders aimlessly sit atop counters until they are condemned to storage limbo, only to be used during the first week of New Year’s resolutions. For the rest of us, a quality blender can make cooking easy and enjoyable. Effortlessly blend together daily smoothies, weeknight soups, homemade nut butters and everything in between. Vitamix blenders are built to last and are the industry standard. However, if you think the recipient won’t use it regularly, get them a much more affordable blender from Walmart where the return policy is more forgiving.

POTS & PANS

The short list of essential cookware (from left to right)

  • Staub Round Cocotte ($249.99-$499.99 on Zwilling.ca): A large French Oven/Cocotte. Use it for soups, stews, braising, roasting, and anything in between. Staub cocotte’s have signature lids that funnel moisture down onto the food inside, which helps keep things moist and delicious.
  • Zwilling Aurora Stainless Steel Fry Pan (135.99 on Zwilling.ca): Use it for sautéing or even blanching long veggies like asparagus. Look for one that is heavy-bottomed with a solid handle.
  • Ballarini Rialto Non-stick Frying Pan ($79.99 at The Bay): The industry test for a non-stick skillet is to fry an egg in it. The vegan equivalent might be a pancake. Look for one that is PFOA and Nickel free.
  • Baumalu Copper Sauce Pot ($39.99-59.99 at Homesense): Along with a cast-iron skillet, copper is one of the few pieces of cookware that gets better with age. It evenly distributes heat, develops a beautiful patina with each use and is easy to maintain. Restore its luster by gently scrubbing it with a mixture of lemon juice and salt.
  • Lodge Cast-iron skillet ($40.79 on Amazon.ca): Use it to sear just about anything. It requires the most maintenance of any pan but if properly taken care of can last several generations.

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Cozy Paleo Hot Cacao http://cookprimalgourmet.com/cozy-hot-cacao-one http://cookprimalgourmet.com/cozy-hot-cacao-one#respond Sun, 18 Dec 2016 19:59:49 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1401 The post Cozy Paleo Hot Cacao appeared first on Primal Gourmet.

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‘Tis the season for carefully considering the wish-lists of others and shopping ’till we drop. At some point or another, we are all going to need some serious R&R and this recipe for Cozy Paleo Hot Cacao is just the ticket!  The addition of this one simple ingredient, in this case cardamom, amplifies the others to an ethereal level making them once simple and sublime. When you are cozying up after a long week or an epic bout of shopping, sit back and create an oasis around you with a cup of cozy cacao.

You may be wondering what the difference is between cacao and cocoa? Cacao refers to chocolate that is less processed, and is as close to the bean that all of the chocolate we love is derived from (yes, chocolate comes from a bean-shaped seed). Opt for raw cacao powder as it is less processed than its roasted counterpart, but whichever you choose, this will still be a mighty fine way to relax and unwind. If you don’t have raw cacao powder, simply use what you have on hand!

Fun fact: When we consume chocolate our bodies release oxytocin, which directly reduces stress hormones. Craving chocolate isn’t a bad thing; it’s more a matter of self-preservation! Just choose the healthiest chocolate to eat, and stay away from all of those foil-wrapped characters, as most of them are chock-full of everything but cacao!

 

Give it a go and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

INGREDIENTS:

(Serves 2)

2 cups unsweetened, organic almond milk

1/8 cup organic maple syrup (or agave nectar)

¼ raw cacao powder – sifted to remove clumps

1 tsp ground cardamom

2 shots of your favorite espresso – optional

 

METHOD:

  1. Add all ingredients except espresso and continuously whisk together over medium heat until it reaches a steady simmer.
  2. You can stop here, pour the hot chocolate into your favourite mug and relax! Or, add a shot of espresso and make it a hot mocha!

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Armenian Eggplant Rolls – Paleofied http://cookprimalgourmet.com/armenian-eggplant-rolls-paleofied http://cookprimalgourmet.com/armenian-eggplant-rolls-paleofied#respond Sun, 18 Dec 2016 19:47:34 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1391 These Eggplant Rolls with Walnut and Pomegranate Stuffing are common throughout Armenia and Georgia and it’s no wonder why. This version takes all of the traditional flavours but keeps things Paleo by insisting on a healthier, homemade mayonnaise.

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These Eggplant Rolls with Walnut and Pomegranate Stuffing are common throughout Armenia and Georgia and it’s no wonder why. They’re loaded with flavour, easy to make, can be prepared ahead of time and best served at room temperature! An flavourful mixture of crushed walnuts, garlic, dill, and vegan mayonnaise are spooned overtop of gently fried ribbons of eggplant before being rolled-up and garnished with fresh pomegranate seeds. I know what you’re thinking and you’re right, they’re exactly the kind of appetizers that will wow your guests this holiday season. Let’s be honest, you’ll need some quick, easy and delicious canapés to accompany those entrées and sides you slave over. It’s simply an added bonus that they look like mini Christmas trees!

Note: This recipe yields approximately 18-20 appetizers. Adjust measurements as needed keeping proportions the same.

 

 

Give them a go and let me know how they turn out in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

INGREDIENTS:

1 large eggplant – cut into ¼ inch slices

1 cup walnuts

1/3 cup paleo mayonnaise of choice (preferably homemade)

3 cloves garlic

¼ cup fresh dill – plus a few sprigs for garnish

2 tbsp water

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)

salt and pepper to taste

pomegranate arils – for garnish

METHOD:

(can be prepared ahead of time, served cold or at room temperature)

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Cut eggplant lengthwise into ¼ inch slices. Drizzle each side with a generous amount of EVOO and season with a bit of salt. Bake at 375F for 45-60 min or until softened throughout.

2. Remove eggplant from oven and let cool.

3. Meanwhile, add walnuts to a food processor and pulse until coarsely ground – set aside.

4. In the same food processor, blitz together the garlic, dill, paleo mayonnaise, water and black pepper until evenly combined. Add the walnuts back to food processor and fold everything together using a spoon.

5. Spoon a bit of the walnut-mayonnaise mixture overtop of each eggplant ribbon, stud with a few pomegranate arils and roll lengthwise. Slice each roll in half. Arrange on a serving platter cut-side down. Garnish with a sprig of dill and one or two more pomegranate seeds.

6. Enjoy with friends and family!

 

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Paleo Cauliflower and Yam Curry http://cookprimalgourmet.com/paleo-cauliflower-yam-curry http://cookprimalgourmet.com/paleo-cauliflower-yam-curry#respond Sun, 18 Dec 2016 19:34:46 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1379 This Paleo Cauliflower and Yam Curry packs a serious flavour punch. It also happens to be vegan and Whole 30-compliant, making it great for everyone!

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Curry comes in all different shapes and sizes. The word ‘curry’ itself has quite a long and complicated history and eludes any precise definition. Depending on where you are in the world, you might encounter dozens if not hundreds of different varieties. A curry can be made with dried chilies or fresh chilies, chicken or fish, lamb or goat, veggies or more veggies… the list goes on.

This paleo version pairs cauliflower, everyone’s favorite fall vegetable, with Japanese yams in a golden, spicy and aromatic coconut milk sauce. The curry is garnished with a quick-and-easy coconut-cucumber ‘yogurt’ inspired by traditional Indian recipes. It’s packed with flavour, is vegan, paleo, low-glycemic and gluten-free, yet satisfying enough to be served as an entrée. Unlike much of the food you’ll encounter at your local Indian Buffet, this Cauliflower and Yam Curry won’t drag you down into into a food-coma! It can also be made ahead of time and reheated when needed since the flavours will continue to develop overnight. In fact, you may want to swap the skillet for a pot and double up on the ingredients since you’ll want to make enough for leftovers! Trust me, I speak from curry-withdrawal experience!

 

 

Give it a go and let me know what you think in the comments below.

Cheers,

Ronny

INGREDIENTS:

For the Curry:

1 head cauliflower – cut into florets

1 medium Japanese yam – peeled and cubed

1 cup onion – diced

2 large tomatoes – grated, drained of its juices and skins discarded

5 cloves garlic – roughly chopped

2 tbsp fresh ginger – grated

1 tsp coriander seed

1 tsp fennel seed

1 tsp cumin seed

1 tsp mustard seed

½ tsp garam masala

1 tsp turmeric powder

¾ tsp cayenne pepper

¼ tsp ground cardamom

2 tsp kosher salt

2 cups full-fat coconut milk

2 tbsp coconut oil

 

For the Coconut-Cucumber ‘Yogurt’

¼ coconut cream

juice of one lime

handful fresh coriander – finely chopped

1 small cucumber – peeled, seeds removed and thinly sliced width-wise

salt and pepper

METHOD:

For the Coconut-Cucumber ‘Yogurt’

  1. Add all ingredients to a small mixing bowl and stir thoroughly to combine.

For the Curry:

  1. Set a large and deep skillet over medium-low heat and toast fennel seed, coriander seed and cumin seed for approximately 3-4 minutes. Transfer toasted spices to a mortar and pestle or spice grinder and grind to a powder – set aside.
  2. In the same skillet, add 2 tbsp coconut oil and one tsp mustard seed. Once the mustard seeds begin to sizzle and pop, add the onion, garlic and ginger. Sautée for approximately 8-10 minutes, stirring regularly to avoid burning. If the pan dries out, simply add a bit more coconut oil.
  3. Once the onion mixture has softened, add the garam masala, turmeric, cayenne, cardamom, salt and previously ground fennel, coriander and cumin seeds. Stir everything together and cook for no longer than 60 seconds.
  4. Add the coconut milk, grated tomatoes, cauliflower florets and cubed yam. Stir everything thoroughly to combine.
  5. Cover the skillet with a lid, drop the heat to low and simmer until the yams and cauliflower are fork-tender. Stir the curry occasionally to avoid burning.
  6. Remove from heat and drizzle coconut-cucumber ‘yogurt’ overtop.

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Gluten-Free Salmorejo with Beets http://cookprimalgourmet.com/gluten-free-salmorejo http://cookprimalgourmet.com/gluten-free-salmorejo#respond Sun, 18 Dec 2016 19:09:58 +0000 http://cookprimalgourmet.com/?p=1369 Never heard of Salmorejo? I’m not surprised! Its more popular cousin Gazpacho gets all the glory these days! But what Salmorejo lacks in fame it makes up for in flavour!

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Never heard of Salmorejo? I’m not surprised! Its more popular cousin Gazpacho gets all the glory these days! But what Salmorejo lacks in fame it makes up for in flavour! Salmorejo Cordobés is a cold tomato soup that hails from Córdoba in the south of Spain. Traditional recipes require blending tomatoes, olive oil, and vinegar with crusty bread to produce a beautifully creamy consistency and orange colour. The soup also calls for raw garlic, which infuses the entire bowl with an unexpected and delightfully intense flavour. It is then topped with crumbled hard-boiled egg and bits of jamón (Spanish dry-cured ham).

This not-so-traditional version replaces the bread with cauliflower and almonds, making it paleo-compliant and gluten-free. Beetroot is then added to enhance the nutritional profile of the dish and also to intensify the soup’s flavour and colour! Rather than the traditional ham and egg, feel free to garnish with a bit more cauliflower and almond, which mimics the traditional toppings and hints at the vegan ingredients in the soup. A few bits of diced avocado help to balance the crunch from the other garnishes and add pops of colour!

 

Give it a go and let me know what you think in the comments below!

Cheers,

Ronny

*Recipe and photographs originally developed for ELXR Juice Lab.

INGREDIENTS:

(serves 2 appetizers)

2 vine-ripened tomatoes

¼ cup beetroot

¼ cup cauliflower florets – plus a bit extra for garnish

¼ cup almonds – plus a bit extra for garnish

1 tsp raw garlic

¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tsp white wine vinegar

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp black pepper

Diced avocado – for garnish

METHOD:

  1. Add everything except EVOO to a high-powered blender or food processor. Set the speed to low and blend for 1 minute to incorporate. Stop blender and scrape down the sides with a spatula or wooden spoon.
  2. Raise the speed to medium and blend for one more minute or until smooth.
  3. Keeping the blender on medium-speed, slowly drizzle-in all of the EVOO (the goal is to create an emulsion). Transfer the mixture to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  4. To serve, ladle the soup into individual bowls and top with chopped cauliflower, almonds and avocado.

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