Tag Archives: primal

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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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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Clams in White Wine Sauce (from The Ancestral Table)

24 Feb


Gluten-Free, Paleo, Perfect Health Diet

As you probably read in my post from the other day, I’m knee-deep in recipe development and writing, in order to get my sophomore cookbook ready for release – which is a lot of fun, but leaves me with little time to keep up with blog recipes. So, I figured out a solution that’s good for both of us: I’ll just post a recipe from The Ancestral Table! I’ve been meaning to share more of these recipes anyway, and this one is a special favorite in our house. The wine sauce is the highlight of the dish, and it is absolutely, ridiculously, heartbreakingly delicious. One of these days I’ll figure out a way to batch-cook and sell this sauce for millions of dollars, but for now, here’s a bit more about the dish, stolen directly from the book (I can do that!):

While clams, wine, and butter are all delicious, the combination of the three is truly divine. This dish, developed in the Provençal region of France, is the quintessential marriage of these rich, decadent flavors. It is equally tasty when prepared with mussels.

Though wild and sustainably caught seafood is generally ideal, it’s better to buy farm-raised clams and mussels. They are raised on ropes suspended above the sea floor, which makes them less gritty than wild clams and mussels dredged from the ocean floor. Dredging up wild clams and mussels can also damage the ocean’s ecosystem.

Even though I’m mostly MIA for a bit, there are still ways to get your Russ Crandall fix (is there such a thing?), should you need it. Next week, I’ll be participating in the Virtual Ultimate Health Summit, which focuses on restoring your health through lessons on diet, sleep, energy, hormones, body image, confidence and stress. I am one of 16 panelists, and I’ll be talking about how history, food culture, and health can combine to find that perfect balance of tasty food and healthy diet, with an emphasis on safe starches (no surprise there, right?). It’s free to enroll, and runs for two weeks, so check it out!

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Paleo Take Out – Soon to be a Print Book!

21 Feb

Hi everyone, there have been some big changes happening lately, so I want to take a second to bring you up to speed.

After hearing a lot of feedback that you folks were interested in seeing a print copy of Paleo Take Out, I started looking at publishing options for the eBook. After weighing a number of factors, I decided to team up with my publisher, Victory Belt Publishing, and we’ll be releasing a print version of the book instead of the eBook I was initially planning on. Since the majority of the book has already been written, we’re going to slide the book into Victory Belt’s summer release schedule to get it out as soon as possible – so look for it in stores starting this June! That’s ridiculously fast in terms of cookbook releases.

In addition to the Asian-inspired takeout dishes I was originally including, I decided to add another chapter of American restaurant and fast food favorites (mindfully recreated, of course). So in addition to your favorite Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Southeast Asian dishes, you’ll also see some other takeout standards like pizza, burgers, wings, and fried chicken. I feel like it is a natural progression since some of my most enduring recipes have been recreations of restaurant favorites, like my chicken nuggets recipe. It’s shaping up to be ridiculously awesome.

As cool as a print book is, there is also one problem associated with not releasing Paleo Take Out as an eBook – in marketing The Safe Starch Cookbook, I have been promising a $5 discount code for Paleo Take Out on the eBook’s originally scheduled release date of March 1st. But without an eBook, that discount code would be worthless, right? So I wanted to figure out something that could adequately replace that anticipated discount.

What I settled on is to release a sample of Paleo Take Out, featuring 10 recipes that will be in the book plus 5-10 recipes that didn’t make it into the final cut of the print book. So on March 1st I’ll reach out to everyone who has purchased The Safe Starch Cookbook and get them a copy of this new sample eBook, and it will come standard with all purchases of The Safe Starch Cookbook starting March 1st, too. I think that’s totally worth $5.

So you’ll have to forgive me, as I’ll be hunkering down and putting the final touches on the book over the next month, then subjecting myself through a whirlwind editing cycle immediately thereafter – so I may be a little scarce here on the blog for a bit. But it’s for a worthy cause, promise!

Oh, and I have a final title: Paleo Take Out: Restaurant Favorites without the Guilt. I almost have the final cover completed, which I’ll be sure to share soon!

Danish Meatballs (Frikadeller)

17 Feb


I know what you’re thinking. It’s something like this – “Seriously, Russ? You already have an awesome Swedish Meatball recipe in your cookbook. Way to put a new coat of paint on your old favorites.”

First of all, thanks for the compliment. Second, these meatballs are a little different. For example, Danish Frikadeller are often smashed and look more like little patties than those little round balls you might be expecting. Think of them as Denmark’s LEGOs (probably their coolest invention) vs. Sweden’s crescent wrench (also a cool invention); both are useful, but serve slightly different purposes.

The recipe itself differs from Swedish meatballs in that I found that adding a bit of tapioca starch makes the balls stick together really well, and they’re pretty delightfully spongy, too. I also played around with the spices until I found something that delivered a distinctive Old-World taste while using common pantry items.

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Torsk (Scandinavian Poached Cod)

10 Feb


I love buying frozen fish. It’s super handy and still tastes great since many fishermen can flash-freeze it almost immediately after harvesting. And while fish thaws quickly, the thawing process is still a tiny pain in the butt; so I started looking for ways to forgo the whole “thawing” thing altogether (sheesh, how lazy can I get?). And that’s when I stumbled upon my new best friend, Torsk.

The word Torsk itself means “cod” in Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish, but also is often used to describe a cod dish in Scandinavia that is sometimes cooked from a frozen state. Perfect. When researching Torsk recipes, I found that they were either poached or broiled; never one to do something halfway, I decided to do both methods in the same recipe to get the best of both worlds. Pulling this dish off is a little different from your typical recipe, but don’t worry, I’m here to walk you through the process. I’m really excited about this recipe, especially because you can pull fish out of the freezer and put it on your dinner table in 20 minutes. It just can’t be beat in terms of convenience and tastiness.

Most broiled versions of Torsk call for butter, but in order to keep the butter from burning I mixed in an equal amount of ghee (which has a much higher smoking point since it doesn’t have milk solids). Lately I’ve been using Tin Star Foods ghee, which is hand-poured in small batches using Kerrygold butter (from grass-fed cows). This ghee is awesome – smooth, flavorful, and rich. Definitely worth your time.

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