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Zucchini Pancakes

Zucchini Pancakes

Ingredients:

2 C zucchini, roughly 2 medium zucchinis, shredded

3 eggs

1 T coconut flour

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Coconut oil

Instructions:

Preheat cast iron skillet over medium-low heat.

Roughly chop zucchini in a food processor, dry with a paper towel and set aside.

Beat eggs in a large bowl.

Add coconut flour into eggs by shifting the flour into the bowl to prevent lumps. Beat together.

Add salt and pepper to zucchini, mix well and add to the egg mixture.

Add coconut oil to preheated skillet. Be certain to coat the entire pan.

Spoon the mixture into the pan into 5” or 2” sized pancakes and cook until each side is lightly golden brown.

Serve warm topped with additional spices and fresh herbs as desired such as parsley, oregano, etc.

Serves 5 – 5” pancakes or 10-2” pancakes

    Tapioca Crepes

    Tapioca Crepes

    Ingredients:

    1 cup coconut milk

    1 egg

    1 C tapioca flour or tapioca starch

    Pinch of salt

    Preferred toppings such as apple butter, sauteed vegetables, pear sauce, bacon, etc.

    Instructions:

    Preheat a nonstick pan or skillet over medium heat.

    Combine the ingredients of coconut milk and egg in a medium bowl. Sift in the tapioca flour and salt to prevent lumps in the batter and mix well. The sifting is an important part of the process.

    Once pan or skillet is ready, pour roughly 1/3 C of mixture onto the surface and spread batter in all directions to cover the surface.

    Cook roughly 2-3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Note that the first crepe is never as good as the remaining crepes.

    Place preferred ingredients on top, wrap or fold the crepe and serve warm.

    Serves 2

      Tuna Salad (with chilli)

      Tuna Salad (with chilli)

      Ingredients:

      2 lemons, juice only

      Drizzle of olive oil

      2 cans tuna, your choice of oil-packed or water-packed cans

      1 C olives, green or black, chopped

      2 green onions, chopped

      1 hot pepper, seeds removed if you do not like the extra heat, finely chopped

      1/2 tsp red chili flakes

      1 head butter lettuce or mixed greens

      1 avocado, sliced

      Instructions:

      Combine the lemon juice, oil, tuna, olives, onions and chili flakes. Mix well. Serve the spicy tuna salad on a crisp lettuce leaf or a bed of mixed greens and top with avocado slices.

      This salad can be stored in the fridge for a day or two to maximize the flavors or served immediately. Do not add the avocado slices until serving as they will brown if left open to the air for too long.

        Fruit Gazpacho

        Fruit Gazpacho

        Ingredients:

        5 peeled kiwis

        1 tsp lime juice

        10 oz. thawed frozen raspberries

        2 tablespoons honey

        12 oz unsweetened lemon-lime sparkling water

        1 C roughly chopped cantaloupe

        4 kiwi slices, for garnish

        Instructions:
        Combine the kiwi and lime juice in a food processor and puree. Set aside.

        Place raspberries and honey into a clean food processor and puree. Strain through a fine mesh sieve to discard seeds. Add in sparkling water, mix and set aside.

        Add the cantaloupe in the clean food processor and puree. Set aside.

        To layer gazpacho, gently spoon equal amounts of kiwi puree into each of four bowls or glasses. Repeat with raspberry puree and cantaloupe puree. Top with fruit slices.

        Serves 4

          Chipotle Salmon with Lime

          chipotle_lime_salmon

          Ingredients:

          1 lb salmon

          1-2 T olive oil

          2 limes, halved

          1 tsp chipotle powder

          1 tsp salt

          ½ tsp pepper

          Instructions:
          Preheat oven to 500°

          Cut the salmon into 4 equal-sized filets

          Pat each piece of salmon dry to remove as much moisture as possible and place on a metal baking pan such as a cookie sheet

          Rub each fillet with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper

          Add juice from one-half lime onto each fillet

          Season fillets with salt and chipotle and top each fillet with half of a lime

          Reduce temperature to 275°

          Cook salmon for 8-12 minutes or to your preferred fish temperature.

            Strip Steak with Chimichurri

            Strip Steak with Chimichurri

            Ingredients:

            2 C cilantro leaves and sprigs, finely chopped

            2 C parsley leaves and sprigs, finely chopped

            2 tsp minced garlic

            1 tsp red pepper chili flakes

            3 T fresh lime juice

            1 T red-wine vinegar

            3 T dry red wine

            1/2 C extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

            Salt and freshly ground black pepper

            2 lbs skirt steak

            Instructions:

            Prepare a grill or grill pan over high heat.

            In a food processor, combine the cilantro, parsley, garlic, lime juice, red wine, olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Pulse until the mixture is a coarse puree. Taste, adjust seasoning and pulse again.

            Rub the steaks with salt, pepper and olive oil. Grill steak roughly 2 to 4 minutes on each side, depending upon thickness, or until it is medium rare. The center of steaks should read 125°F on a meat thermometer. Remove the steak to a plate and to rest for at minimum of 5 minutes.

            Slice steak across the grain at a 45 degree angle. Spoon a partial amount of the chimichurri over the steak on a serving plate. Serve the remaining sauce alongside the dish.

            Serves 4

              Eggplant Chips

              Eggplant Chips

              Ingredients:

              1 large, ripe eggplant

              2 cups cheese

              2 eggs

              Instructions:

              Preheat oven to 450 degrees and grease a cookie sheet.

              Remove the ends from the eggplant and shred in a food processor. Mix eggplant with the egg and cheese. Lump mixture onto the prepared cookie sheet and smooth out to make 8″ circles, roughly 6.

              Bake for 12 minutes. Loosen and flip the discs. Bake for another 5 minutes. Once cooked thoroughly, remove from the oven and cut the discs into triangles with a pizza cutter. Let cool on a rack for 6-8 hours. This is an important part of the process to ensure the chips become crisp.

              Once dried, sprinkle with seasoning such as popcorn seasoning, Old Bay, garlic salt or any other seasoning of your choice. Eat immediately as a healthy and light snack or store the eggplant chips for up to one week in an airtight container or resealable
              bag.

                All-Natural Pear Sauce

                Natural Pear Sauce

                Ingredients:

                3 1/2 lbs pears

                1/4 C water

                1/2 lemon, juiced

                1 tsp cinnamon

                1/2 tsp cardamom

                1/8 tsp nutmeg

                Instructions:

                Peel, core and coarsely chop the pears and add to a large saucepan.

                Combine the pears, water, lemon juice, cinnamon, cardamom and nutmeg. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat. Boil gently, occasionally stirring, for 20 minutes.

                Transfer mixture to a food processor or blender fitted with a metal blade and puree just until a uniform texture is achieved. Work in batches if necessary. Be careful not to liquefy the puree or you will lose the applesauce-like quality of the pear sauce.

                Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. You might also freeze the puree in smaller quantities, such as in one cup containers, and store for several months.

                Serves 4-6

                  Is the Paleo Diet Healthy?

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                  The increase in obesity has brought a wide variety of diets and weight-loss solutions. Some of these are healthy and responsible, while others are not. The Paleo Diet, also referred to as the Caveman Diet, is a fairly new dieting approach, though in other ways can be considered the very oldest of diets. It is based on the concept that the eating habits of our ancient ancestors were much healthier than our options today. It includes a diet of meats, fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts. There have been several studies on this particular diet, with generally positive but as with all things sometimes conflicting data, but on the whole many people can see the logic behind its principles. In weighing up any diet, one of the most important aspects is its health implications. Besides the possibility of weight-loss, the Paleo Diet can also provide a significant number of vitamins and nutrients that the body needs to function properly and may also have a role in treating inflammatory diseases and provide several other health benefits.

                  The Health Benefits

                  In today’s society, people have become accustomed to the convenience of processed, previously prepared food. These ready-made meals may save time and money, but they are not always the healthiest option. The Paleo Diet conforms to the many different aspects of the nationally accepted dietary guidelines. Many Americans include way too much salt within their diet. High amounts of sodium can lead to high-blood pressure and an excess of fluid build-up, which causes painful swelling. This diet reduces these risks because ancient individuals did not have salt to season their food. Potassium is an extremely important nutrient for the body. Studies have shown that potassium reduces bone loss and improves kidney health. Bananas have an abundance of this nutrient. Another benefit to this diet is the availability to fiber. Fiber is a vital component for normal digestion. It sends signals to the brain that you are full, and also promotes the elimination of waste. The Paleo Diet provides the body with more than enough fiber due to the large amounts of fruits and vegetables it demands. Because soft drinks and juices were not available, ancient people drank lots of water. In fact, the body cannot survive without it. Water promotes the function of most systems within the body and prevents dehydration and drinking water is much much better for you than sodas and sugary juices.
                  Apart from the obvious nutritional benefits, by eliminating sugar intake, the paleolithic diet lowers the development of insulin resistance and the development of diabetes. This has wide reaching benefits with respect to weight loss and overall health.
                  By eliminating bread from your diet this also helps fight against the development of insulin resistance and helps individuals following the diet to lose weight, improve muscle tone and body shape and generally feel a whole lot healthier.
                  Indeed by avoiding sugar and refined wheat followers of the paleo diet also experience a reduction in intestinal yeast which results in reduced abdominal bloating and the possible resolution of a range of other health problems.
                  Some advocates also report improvement in the status of inflammatory diseases such as colitis and arthritis.

                  Possible Challenges

                  While there are many benefits to the Paleo Diet, there are particular characteristics that may be difficult to follow. This diet requires a great deal of protein. Proteins are found in meat, such as chicken, beef, and pork. However, these meats can also be full of extra fats. for this reason lean meats are a must, and advocates should be careful to purchase lean meats wherever possible. The Paleolithic Diet also involves eliminating grains and dairy products. These foods are high in nutrients that are necessary for some people. Those suffering from some form of vitamin D or calcium deficiency would have to find other ways to get what their body needs. Another potential challenge is the cost of committing to this type of diet. The price of groceries is at an all-time high in many countries. This is especially true for cuts of meat and fresh vegetables, which are an essential part of this diet.Indeed before attempting this or any other diet, it is important to discuss the benefits and risks with a trusted medical professional. There are features of the Paleo Diet that some people may struggle with and its important to check with your Doctor first before you decide if this is the right diet for you. The responsible thing to do is become educated on both the positive and negative sides of any new diet. Only then will you be able to make an informed decision.
                  For more info on  the health benefits of the paleo diet please CLICK HERE.

                    How important is a good night’s sleep?

                    reset and recovery

                    We all know how rubbish we feel without sleep. Many of us are so consistently sleep deprived we have forgotten what “good” actually feels like. Whichever of these applies to you, you must pay more attention to the quality and quantity of your sleep. One bad nights sleep can cause insulin resistance similar to that of a type II diabetic. Think about how rough you feel when you lose sleep. That’s similar to how a type II diabetic feels when their disease is uncontrolled.

                    Maybe you think sleep is for weaker people, you have amazing stamina and another cup of coffee will see you through the day. Then consider this: The Disease Control Centres have shown that shift work and sleep deprivation is actually a type of carcinogen (that’s right it can cause cancer!). Insufficient or poor quality sleep puts your body under significant stress, compromises your immune system and makes you overweight, forgetful, and irrational.

                    Our caveman ancestors never had an alarm clock. They went to sleep at sunset and got up at sunrise. Like every other living thing, they were in tune with the seasons and the natural state of day and night. They rested in the daytime when they were tired and at night they slept. This is what our genetics  expect us to do but most of us live out a very different reality.

                    Lack of sleep causes stress. Stress has an additive effect. We lose sleep, work more, worry about money, and take care of our children. All of this increases our stress levels. Good sleep is one of the most important factors in reducing stress and if we are sleep deprived stress can cause elevated cortisol levels in the evening.This makes you tired during the day and wired at night, which then affects your sleep quality. It’s a vicious circle.

                    So, how long should you sleep each night? Well, you should aim for at least eight to nine hours of sleep every night. Basically, If you still need an alarm clock to wake up on time then you’re not getting enough sleep. The bedroom MUST be dark , the kind of dark that our caveman ancestors experienced before civilization, city life and light pollution. That means no light whatsoever. No TV (not even on standby), computers, or even alarm clocks. Even go so far as to cover the LED lights on your alarm. Don’t resort to sleep masks. Block the light from your windows with blackout curtains or tape them up with cardboard if need be. Whatever you do, the room must be dark. If you learn how to sleep well, you’ll have improved memory, fewer allergies,  less inflammation and recover faster from exercise. If your even a little overweight, this is especially important. If you want to lose weight , make sure a good night’s sleep is a priority!

                    Ken Burge (inventor of the Paleo Burn Program) provides a real insight into the hormonal and biochemical process which makes sleep so crucial to weight loss and ongoing good health. CLICK HERE to learn more.