The biggest party of the year is about to begin! That’s right…it’s almost time for Super Bowl XLVIII! (And BTW, the game is going to be played right here in New Jersey, NOT New York…but I digress.)
In less than 50 years, the Super Bowl has become a genuine and huge American tradition. It’s estimated that more than 110 million people will tune in to watch this year’s game – a new record! And what’s the best way to celebrate an American tradition? Throw a party, of course! Nothing goes together better than great football and copious amounts of food and adult beverages…unless, of course, you’re eating Paleo.
We’ve all been there, at one time or another…surrounded by hors d’oeuvres, finger food, main courses, desserts and drinks…and we can’t touch much, if any, of it! Instead, we reach into our bags and pull out a bag of kale chips or a Larabar as everyone else stares with pity…while stuffing their faces.
This doesn’t have to happen! Whether you’re rooting for the Broncos or the Seahawks, there’s no reason you can’t make great tasting, healthy paleo food for a Super Bowl party. That’s why we’ve provided a few recipes of our own, as well as links to other great Paleo recipes that are all excellent choices for Super Bowl Sunday. Enjoy!!!
2014 is already upon us, and all I can say is…WHAT happened to 2013? Wow, that went fast! Is it just me, or does time really seem to go by faster when you get older? I remember as a child that the lead-up to Christmas Day and all the excitement and anticipation seemed like an eternity, but now it goes by in the blink of an eye. All of a sudden, “Poof!” It’s a new year!
Of course, what would a New Year be without a resolution? If you’re like me, you probably view the New Year’s resolution with equal parts conviction (because this year, you’re REALLY going to do it!) and dread (because you know how hard it can be to live up to as time goes by). But take heart, because you CAN do it. You can take control of your physical, emotional, and spiritual health. Is it going to be easy? Probably not…but then, what worthy goal is ever easy to achieve?
There is so much focus on diet and exercise at the beginning of a new year. Not as much attention is paid to the emotional and spiritual well-being. But there are habits we can cultivate that will help us become more well-rounded individuals, healthy in mind, body, soul and spirit. Today I am sharing the Ten Habits for a Well-Rounded Person (referenced in the Healthy, Happy, and Free post) and which I’ll summarize below:
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It’s called the Harvest Your Health Bundle Sale, and it’s only available for this week!
The sale ends on Monday, October 14 at 11:59 PM EST.
Click on the links to the ebooks to learn more about them.
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This post contains affiliate links. If you click on them you’ll be taken to a website where you can purchase the Harvest Your Health E-Book bundle. I’ll make a commission for each purchase. Thanks in advance for your support!
You can take the girl out of Texas but you can’t take Texas out of the girl. I grew up eating Mexican and Tex-Mex food. But after living in New Jersey for many years I have had to learn to live without some of my favorite foods. It’s just not the same around here no matter what some people say. I’m almost always disappointed when attempting to find decent Mexican and Tex-Mex restaurants. And of course having celiac disease and following the paleo diet does place limits on what I can enjoy anyway. In spite of that, I still consider myself a connoisseur of tortillas. So let’s get one thing straight when it comes to this paleo tortillas recipe. Those of us who are well-acquainted with the taste AND texture of flour and corn tortillas will be tough customers. There’s just no way grain-free tortillas will be exactly the same as “regular” tortillas. But with this recipe my goal was to create something that would not taste TOO eggy, not be too much like a crêpe and would be pliable – able to hold a filling without breaking.
The recipe uses eggs but not nearly as many as some other recipes I have seen. There’s just enough yolk to help them hold together but not enough that it overpowers the flavor. The coconut flour gives it some body but not enough to impart a coconut flavor – something I would find unpleasant in a tortilla. The flax meal helps replace some of the eggs and is one reason the paleo tortillas are flexible. The tapioca flour is a terrific alternative to wheat flours. I have used it before in my Paleo Dinner Rolls recipe and really like the true “bread-like” texture it provides.
Once you get the technique down for making them, paleo tortillas are fairly quick and easy. We have eaten these right after cooking and we have also stored the tortillas in a big zip-lock in the fridge for later use. They stayed flexible after reheating and did not break when they were used to make chicken enchiladas.
Before being diagnosed with celiac disease* I was in a “no man’s land”. Maybe you’ve been there too. It’s the place you end up when you don’t know what is making you sick and no one – including doctors – knows how to help you. It’s not a fun place to be. Back then, even though it was not clear what was making me sick, I must have subconsciously known it had to do with food. I simply felt better when I didn’t eat! Clearly we have to eat to live so this was not sustainable. Regardless, I got into the habit of skipping breakfast or only having coffee or a latte. To be more precise, the Triple Venti Latte (usually with an extra shot) at Starbucks was often my breakfast of choice.
Fortunately, I found a better option than skipping meals in order to feel good. As long as I don’t eat grains and gluten I generally feel pretty well. These days breakfast usually consists of eggs over-medium fried in ghee with fresh tomatoes and avocado or maybe bacon and berries. There’s typically some type of protein, veggies and/or fruit and a fat. But lately I’ve been making these paleo banana mocha shakes (or smoothies) for a change of pace. The shake goes great with a couple of eggs in the morning in place of my usual coffee. But I also like to have one in the later afternoon and use some of the leftover French-pressed coffee still in a thermos from the morning. The frozen banana gives this dairy-free chocolate shake body and sweetness and it combines well with the flavors of chocolate and coffee. It’s a great way to use up those bananas you froze when they got a couple of dark spots and no one would eat them. (At least that’s what happens in our house…) Continue reading →
A few weeks ago, G and I attended the book release party for Beyond Bacon, the amazing cookbook by our friends Matt and Stacy from Paleo Parents. At the time, we were vacationing at G’s parents’ home in Ocean City, Maryland. After deciding to leave the boys with their grandparents, we proceeded to drive across the Chesapeake Bay (via a rather scary bridge*) to Virginia. Our destination was theRed Apron Butchery for a party celebrating the book release.
Red Apron is just about the coolest butcher shop ever, filled with delicious, pastured meat products and much more.
G and I enjoyed the meat-themed ambiance of the venue. Pastured pork products celebrated in abundance! Check out G eyeing me with skepticism while trying to peek at his phone. We spied a few tongue-in-cheek album cover recreations and sampled the “Original Sin” hard cider. (Don’t tell my mom. She once photoshopped out a beer I was holding in a photo because she didn’t think it was becoming. Oh Mom.)
After waiting in a fairly substantial line of folks wanting to congratulate Matt and Stacy, I took my turn posing with the couple of hour. Stacy looked beautiful and glowing and Matt was quite the buff Crossfit guy. They were both justifiably proud of their creation!
When I first went paleo it was out of a desire to determine if my health could be improved by changing the way I was eating. Undertaking a strict elimination diet was the key to improving my health and ultimately led me to a diagnosis of celiac disease. So I am big believer that anyone experiencing autoimmune disease symptoms owes it to themselves to find out if their health could be improved by a change in diet. For individuals whose symptoms are not fully eliminated after following the standard paleo diet you may wish to consider the Autoimmune Paleo Protocol (AIP).
Why Follow the Autoimmune Paleo Protocol?
The autoimmune paleo protocol was derived from research indicating autoimmune disease stems from inflammation in the body. Inflammation is often caused by an underlying problem with intestinal permeability (or “leaky gut”). When a person has leaky gut, irritation in the gut lining causes the tight junctions in the intestinal barrier to allow unwanted molecules (food, toxins, bacteria) into the bloodstream. The autoimmune paleo protocol eliminates those foods that have been shown to irritate the gut or cause increased permeability.
What is the Autoimmune Paleo Protocol?
The autoimmune paleo protocol is a version of the Paleo diet (no grains, legumes or dairy) that also includes the avoidance of the following:
Nighshades (Vegetables from the Solanaceae family of plants: Eggplant, White Potatoes, Peppers, Tomatoes, Tomatillos, Pimentos, Paprika, Curry, Chili Powder, Red Pepper Flakes, Cayenne Pepper, Tabasco sauce, et al.)
Paleo dinner rolls may very well save my relationship with my oldest son. Wait…let me explain. My son Ben is generally a very sweet, smart, funny and easy-going young man. But give him gluten and he turns into a different person. Ben normally takes his paleo lunch to school but yesterday was “Take Your Child To Work Day” and he ended up eating the pizza lunch given to the kids at the event. Last night he had another one of his meltdowns and it proved once again the direct and very dramatic correlation between his mood and his diet.
We follow our paleo way of eating fairly strictly. In spite of the paleo dessert recipes on this site we really do not indulge in them frequently. Our desire for sugary snacks is not that powerful at this point. But when you have a middle school boy who is gluten intolerant (and quite possibly celiac) there has to be a balance between following what may be considered strictly paleo and helping him feel like a normal kid. During his meltdown Ben expressed he is often embarrassed that he eats differently from his peers. He NEEDS to have treats now and then and yes, he wants to eat bread. I want to train him to eat whole foods and take care of his body. But I refuse to allow food to become something that divides us and makes life more difficult. Middle school is hard enough!
In order to keep Ben on board with the program – to keep him from rebelling completely – I tried to come up with a recipe for a type of paleo bread he might enjoy. I have another recipe for banana cardamom bread but it uses almond flour and Ben is allergic to nuts. So this paleo bread recipe had to be nut free as well as grain and gluten free. The solution is a recipe that uses tapioca flour (also known as tapioca starch) as well as coconut flour and a few other, simple ingredients. Continue reading →
Since 1996, in the United States, April has been dedicated as a month to celebrate poetry. The purpose is to highlight the extraordinary legacy and ongoing achievement of American poets and introduce more Americans to the pleasures of poetry. April seems an appropriate time for National Poetry Month given the concentration of poems related to spring. It’s also a time I long for every year when the landscape starts bursting into life after a long, cold winter. The joys of gardening are just around the corner as are long walks in neighboring arboretums and nature preserves.
A fine example of a springtime poem is by American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow who seems to capture the essence of the earliest of this season:
American poet Robert Frost wrote another favorite, “Nothing Gold Can Stay”. It speaks to that precious and fleeting time when the earth erupts with newness. The poem has a pessimistic tone referencing the fall of man in Eden. The lesson seems to be there is so much potential early in life (as in spring) but it can become corrupted. It reminds me to enjoy the time I have with my young boys because, like the early spring, it will be gone in the blink of an eye. I must do everything I can to not only appreciate this time with them but raise them in such a way as to give them a better chance at remaining uncorrupted by the world – so that they may “stay gold” if you will.
Where I live in the Northeast United States, April is the time of year when this particular shade of green is apparent “but only so an hour”. I look forward to it every year.
The uniqueness of the early spring is also the inspiration for a CONTEST!
If you are a horticulturist, backyard gardener or simply a lover of nature, I have a contest for you! Well, this is not a contest to win a Le Creuset pot or something else of significant value. It’s just something fun with a little reward for one lucky person who is able to identify the common name for a few plants. All but one of these photos were taken on my own property within the last two weeks. Some will be very easy to identify and at least two will take more advanced skills. You can leave your guesses in the comments section and I will select one winner to receive this copy of “The Gardener” Comic book-like plantable seed paper. I bought this one in New York City in the fall and would love to share it to celebrate the season. Continue reading →
“If the world seems cold to you, kindle fires to warm it.”
~Lucy Larcom (1824-1893), American poet
This past week was a rough one. Our family got some bad news and it has caused us to re-evaluate a few things in our lives. I have faith everything will turn out fine. But it does take some effort to see the bright side right now. One thing I have learned over the years is that happiness is mostly a result of our attitude. Being grateful for the good things in our lives is a powerful tool to combat the negative and the depression that often follows. To that end I am making it a habit to notice the good things in my life and acknowledge them specifically. I thank God for blessings each day even when I don’t feel like it.
The other major change in my life that has helped me cope with stressful circumstances is cleaning up my diet and getting my vitamin D levels into the normal range. These things have done wonders for my mood. I do not need medication for depression. The winter months used to leave me feeling blue but now I find even the gray days of the season calming and pleasant in their own way.