Pressure Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage

14 Apr

Corned Beef and Cabbage
Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

So, I’m apparently way behind on my blog posts, since I’m sharing a corned beef recipe a month after St. Patrick’s Day! Truth be told, I’ve been so busy traveling and working on Paleo Takeout that I didn’t have a chance to make this holiday meal until recently, but it turned out so well that I wanted to share it with you folks immediately. Part of why it worked like a charm is because of my handy Instant Pot electronic pressure cooker, which cut the cooking time of this dish down to just over 90 minutes.

The corned beef I used for this dish was this uncured corned beef brisket from US Wellness Meats. Because it is traditionally preserved (without the use of sodium nitrite), it doesn’t have the pink color that we’re accustomed to when we think of modern corned beef. But fear not – it tastes just as good as what you’d expect.

The term “corned beef”, as you have probably guessed, has nothing to do with corn. A logical conclusion would be that it is seasoned with peppercorns, but that’s not the case, either. The secret is that in medieval times, “corn” was a description of salt when in a large-grain form. So really, it just meant salted beef, which is a process that has been around for thousands of years. The specific term “corned beef” is traced as far back as the 11th century in Ireland (600 years after St. Patrick was around, by the way). The concept of eating corned beef and cabbage (sometimes referred to as New England Boiled Dinner) on St. Patrick’s Day is a mostly American concept; a more appropriate Irish dish to enjoy on St. Patrick’s Day would be Colcannon.

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Mexican Fish Ceviche

7 Apr


Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

Ceviche is a popular seafood dish in Central and South America made from raw seafood (usually fish or shrimp) marinated in citrus juices. Today, it is most associated with Peru, who even has a holiday to celebrate the dish (June 28, if you’re interested). Spaniards arriving in the Americas found that the pre-Inca peoples of Mocha had a similar dish, which used the fermented juices of the banana passionfruit. There is archeological evidence of ceviche’s consumption as far back as 2,000 years ago.

Unlike Peruvian ceviche, the Mexican variation often includes tomatoes, jalapeños, and green olives. That’s the variation we’re going to make today.

When choosing a fish, it’s best to use a white ocean fish like sea bass, grouper, halibut, or flounder. Keep the fish as cold as possible while preparing it, and be sure to remove the blood line (the dark line down the center of some fish) to keep the dish from tasting too “fishy”. I also prefer to combine the ingredients near the end; red onions steeped in lime juice will color the dish prematurely.

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Beef Jerky (Paleo, Gluten-free)

31 Mar


Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

We’re currently vacationing in Orlando this week (and consulting my Disney guide from time to time). The weather is perfect, the crowds are terrible (as expected), and our son Oliver is having a great time relaxing and getting away from the stresses of kindergarten. In preparation for our trip, I decided to revisit one of the first recipes I posted on this blog, beef jerky.

It’s amazing how jerky has endured as one of my all-time favorite foods since childhood. The word “jerky” itself is borrow from the word ch’arki, which translates to “dried, salted meat” in the Quechua language (spoken in the Andes region of South America).

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Avgolemono Soup

24 Mar


Gluten-Free, Perfect Health Diet

Avgolemeno is a Mediterranean sauce and soup, most commonly associated with Greece. As a sauce, it’s often served with Dolma or used as a vegetable dip. But if you ask me, it really shines the most as a mild and comforting soup, and that’s why I’m sharing this recipe with you today. It features egg yolks and lemon juice which enrich and enliven the soup, and some fresh dill brings it all together to give it a distinct and just slightly exotic flavor.

I’m a big fan of taking my time when making recipes. After all, cooking is one of my main sources of relaxation (second only to reading cheesy sci-fi). But I realize that’s not always the case for folks, so I’m trying something new today; below you’ll find a “short version” of the recipe that can be made in 20 minutes, as well as the traditional 2-hour version. Let me know what you think. If you like it, I’ll try to incorporate more variety into my recipe posts (kind of like how I’ve been adding pressure-cooker versions to some recipes).

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Creole Puchero (Puchero Criollo)

17 Mar


Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

First of all, great news: Paleo Takeout is now available for pre-order! Alright, back to the food.

Puchero is a popular stew in many Spanish-speaking countries (the word puchero means “stewpot” in Spanish). There are many variations to this dish, but I was especially drawn to the version that comes from the Río de la Plata region, where Argentina and Uruguay share a border. One dish from this area in particular is called Puchero Criollo, indicating it is of Creole origin. That led me to read up a bit on Creole history, and that settled it – this was the dish I wanted to share with you folks.

The term “Creole” generally refers to cultures of mixed European and native heritage. The most popular use of the term in the US is Louisiana Creole, indicating those descended from French or Spanish colonists prior to the Louisiana purchase. In terms of this stew, Puchero Criollo refers to a dish that is inspired by its Spanish heritage but uses items native to the Río de la Plata region; in this case, beef (primarily osso buco) is the common protein used in this dish since cattle are plentiful in the region. To have a little fun with the dish, I added a few staples of Louisiana Creole cuisine to the stew, like Creole seasoning and some andouille sausage.

In keeping with the tradition I started a while back, I’ve included Instant Pot electric pressure cooker instructions for this dish, to cut down on the cooking time. stovetop instructions are also included.

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Buck Books Event – Tuesday, March 17th

15 Mar

Hi everyone, just a quick note to let you know about this awesome event coming up in a couple days. If you remember, back in November, the Kindle and iBooks versions of my debut cookbook The Ancestral Table went on sale for super cheap as part of a “Buck Books” event. Well, the folks behind the last event are repeating this sale but with new Paleo-minded books! The books will range in price from $.99 to $2.99, depending on how large of a file size they are (books with lots of pictures, like cookbooks, have to carry a higher price on Amazon). As far as I know, all iBooks versions will be $.99.

This sale will be for one day only – to be notified the moment the books drop in price, be sure to sign up for the Buck Books newsletter. Here is a list of the books that will be available, in order of which ones I personally will be buying first! If you’re looking to stock up on resources at an unbeatable price, this is a great opportunity. Enjoy!

The Paleo Cure by Chris Kresser – one of my favorite Paleo-minded nutrition books
The Zenbelly Cookbook by Simone Miller – one of the best Paleo cookbooks out there
Paleo Grilling by Tony Federico – one of my favorite cookbooks of 2014
The Slim Palate Paleo Cookbook – by Joshua Weissman – beautiful, simple recipes
Paleo by Season by Peter Servold – excellent intermediate recipes
Danielle Walker’s Against All Grain: Meals Made Simple by Danielle Walker – NYT bestseller
The Primal Connection by Mark Sisson
Make it Paleo by Bill Staley and Hayley Mason – over 200 recipes
The Paleo Slow Cooker by Arsy Vartanian
Paleo Eats by Kelly Bejelly – just released in January
Make Ahead Paleo by Tammy Credicott
Everyday Paleo Family Cookbook by Sarah Fragoso
52 Healthy Paleo Breakfast Ideas by Caitlin Weeks
The Everything Paleo Pregnancy Book by Tarah Chieffi
Merrymaker Paleo by Emma and Carla Papas

Come Meet me at Press Publish in Phoenix!

12 Mar

Hi everyone, I’m excited to announce that I’ll be speaking at a one-day blogging conference, called Press Publish, which is hosted by the folks behind WordPress.com. This blog has been hosted on WordPress.com since day one, so I’m honored to be a part of their team for this event. I’ll be attending the Phoenix event, which is on April 18th – I haven’t been to Arizona in years, so I’m looking forward to spending some time in the Grand Canyon state!

The purpose of the conference is to allow bloggers to connect, learn new tips and tricks from the staff behind WordPress.com, and to hear from other bloggers regarding what they did to reach their audience. Specifically, my segment is titled, “How I Found My Voice”, and I’ll be talking about how I discovered (and honed) my niche in the world of food blogging. It should be a lot of fun!

Tickets are $150, but here’s the cool thing: I have a super secret discount code for you folks, for 40% off, using the code DOMESTIC40. Your ticket also comes with a free $99 WordPress.com premium upgrade if you use WordPress.com for your own blog, or for self-hosted WordPress blogs, a 1-year subscription to the VaultPress Backup Bundle. So let’s do the math: 40% off $150 is $90, plus a $99 value thrown in = I’m basically paying you $9 to come hang out with me.

Hope to see you there! Be sure to check out the Press Publish page for more info.

Mole Verde Roasted Chicken

10 Mar


Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

Mole is a term used for a number of sauces in Mexico. On its own, the word usually implies Mole Poblano, a dark red sauce made with poblano peppers. This sauce, Mole Verde, is a lighter, fresher version of the sauce, made with pepitas, blended herbs, and tomatillos.

A traditional herb used in this dish is epazote, which is a pungent, weed-like herb. It’s also commonly added while cooking black beans, because it reduces the gassiness that follows after eating those magical fruits. If you can’t find espazote where you live, never fear – flat-leaf parsley will work in a pinch.

Many variations of this dish call for stewing the chicken in the sauce. But I started thinking about the fact that this sauce can be put together in about 20 minutes, and it’s a tragedy that you’d have to delay the cooking time by so much in order to stew the chicken (and lose some of the sauce’s fresh taste along the way). Instead, I figure that there’s a better way to get dinner on your table; you can roast a chicken (or buy a rotisserie chicken) separately and combine it with the sauce to serve. I particularly like the contrasting flavors of the bold, refreshing sauce and the tender roast chicken. It’s making me hungry all over again just typing this. Enough talk; let’s get cooking.

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Paleo Takeout Recipe Testing – Now Open!

7 Mar

Hi everyone, great news! I’m a couple weeks ahead of the recipe development for my next book, Paleo Takeout, so I think it’s a perfect time to open up recipe testing to the public! I want to make sure that these recipes are meeting everyone’s expectations – after all, since I’m re-creating restaurant recipes, I want to get the tastes just right. So that’s where you come in.

To test a recipe, simply join this neat Paleo Takeout Facebook group and follow the instructions in the group. You can then use the FB group to ask/answer questions and provide feedback on the recipe you chose. Note that I would like to have feedback in by March 15th, so please don’t delay!

I’m also using this group to share photos and insights about the recipe development. For example, check out the latest cover for the book! Pretty sweet, huh?

Korean Oyster Soup (Gulguk)

3 Mar


Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

Phew! Okay, since last checking in, I’ve completed all of my photos for my upcoming book, Paleo Take Out, and the manuscript is with the editor. I’m happy to announce that the book will feature over 150 recipes! That’s a far cry from the 45-60 recipes I started with last year, and I’m really excited to get this book in your hands. Paleo Take Out will be out in all bookstores starting in June, and I’ll be sure to share more info as I put the finishing touches on it.

Starting today, I’m bundling a preview copy of Paleo Take Out with every purchase of The Safe Starch Cookbook. The preview book features 10 recipes from Paleo Take Out plus three that didn’t make the cut (initially I planned on having 5-10 not make the cut, but I found a way to squeeze them into the book!). One of those recipes also happens to be today’s recipe, which I think you’ll enjoy – Korean Oyster Soup.

Gulguk (굴국) is a quick and tasty soup, often considered a cure for hangovers. It’s sometimes served with cooked white rice dropped in at the end, at which point it’s called Gulgukbap (굴국밥). But if you’re not a rice eater, don’t worry – it’s just as tasty without the rice, or with some spiraled vegetable or kelp noodles thrown in at the end.

One last note – that Virtual Ultimate Health Summit I mentioned last week is now live through March 13th. I recorded my segment last week and had a lot of fun with it; we discussed food, history, and culture, and I think you folks will really enjoy my talk. Plus there are 17 other panelists involved, too! Okay, soup time.

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