Last Week in Food

I’ve been eagerly waiting for my copy of SLIM PALATE to come in the mail since I pre-ordered it in February.  How excited was I after getting back from Florida and it was waiting here for me!  If you don’t know anything about this book, it is written by JOSHUA WEISSMAN, a 17 year old from Texas.  Yes, someone who is 17 and has written a cookbook.  Did I mention that he’s lost 100 pounds since starting his paleo lifestyle?  Well, he did.

 

So I thought I would share the handful of recipes that I’ve tried out so far–well, share the pictures and names–but for the recipes, you’ll have to check out the book!  After looking at the whole book, I can honestly say that it is definitely worth getting if you’re looking for some new paleo recipes.  Seriously…it’s like food porn.

 

The first recipe I made was Sweet Rosemary Meatballs…

 

sweet rosemary meatballs

I served them with a salad and baked acorn squash.  The reason that the acorn squash looks dark is because (a) I dumped a ton of cinnamon on it, and (b) I like to slightly overcook my acorn squash until it’s super soft and practically falling out of the shell.  For those of you who have never had acorn squash (or have only had it in a savory style), this is a wonderfully versatile squash that usually serves as a dessert for us!  Here’s how I make acorn squash:

 

Acorn Squash

 

1 acorn squash

1 Tbsp butter, divided

2 tsp pure maple syrup, divided

cinnamon

 

1.–Preheat your oven to 350.  In the event that you’re already cooking something that’s at 400, go ahead and use that temp.  I’ll cook mine anywhere between 350 and 425.

2.–Cut acorn squash in half and dig out the seeds.  I set each half–“bowl” side up–on top of a small ramekin, and both ramekins on top of a foil-lined baking sheet.

3.–Rub a small amount of coconut oil over the exposed part of the flesh.  Cut off about 1/2 Tbsp of butter (or ghee) to put in each squash bowl.  Shake cinnamon over the squash flesh (I use about 1/2 tsp per half).  Pour 1 tsp pure maple syrup over each butter piece.  Bake for 60-90 minutes, depending on temperature and how soft you want the squash to be.

 

The next recipe I made was Thai Fish Cakes (with a side of Ginger Lime Coleslaw, also in Slim Palate).

 

thai fish cakes1

These were DELICIOUS!  And the slaw…oh, the sweet, sweet slaw.  I will be making that at least once a week to add with whatever meal I’m making.  A word to the inexperienced–the paste that you’re making in the food processor is a little hard to work with.  MAKE SURE you have wet hands when you’re forming the cakes.  As you chill them after forming and before cooking, I suggest lining a sheet with plastic wrap and rubbing a little olive oil on the wrap before forming them.  Trust me, they will be much easier to get off the surface before cooking.

 

Saturday night I made the Pan-Roasted Spiced Pork Chops with Lemon and Sage.

 

 

pan roasted spiced pork chops with sage and lemon

The sheen on top of them is just the glare of our overhead light.  These were SO GOOD.  Also, super fast to make.  6-8 minutes in the pan, 10 minutes in the oven, done.  They are incredibly fragrant, which makes them taste even better.  They paired nicely with a simple salad.

 

Finally, Sunday night I made the Chilled Avocado, Coconut, and Cucumber Soup with a salad.

 

chilled avocado soup Sunday Salad

 

I will preface this by saying that in general, I do not like chilled soups.  Period.  End of story.  But JR really enjoys them, so when we had some friends over for dinner, I decided to suck it up and make this for them.  While I still don’t enjoy cold soup enough to put it on the menu regularly, this was really good for a cold soup.  What can I say?  I prefer my soup hot!  The toasted coconut on top was a lovely contrasting texture and taste.  I actually want to try to make popsicles out of this soup–I think they would be wonderful!

 

I make salad a lot as of late.  It’s a cheap and filling side dish.  I never write down how I make my salads (it’s sort of a dump-and-go process).  That being said, everyone who eats them constantly asks me how I make them…so I sort of paid attention last night so I could share.  I still didn’t take exact measurements though…so don’t expect that LOL!

 

Simple Salad

 

Greens (I used spinach from the farmer’s market last night, but I usually use organic herb garden mix from Central Market)

Mushrooms, cleaned and sliced thin (eh…maybe 6 or 7 of them?)

Handful of blueberries

Chopped strawberries (5 or 6, I cut them into 8-12 pieces each)

2 tomatoes, chopped

2 scallions, sliced thick

1/2 to 1 Tbsp lavender buds

For the dressing, I usually mix a few spoons of MAYO with a splash of almond milk, a splash of apple cider vinegar, a TON of dill (seriously…my dill addiction is excessive), a shake or two of basil, salt, pepper, and a quick pour of honey (maybe 1/2 tsp?).  Stir that up in a small bowl and pour it on the salad.  Toss everything together and chow down!

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