Lamb Chops with Lemon, garlic, Rosemary, Sage and Thyme Marinade

Fall is upon us, and I’m having mixed feelings because I love summer (I’m a Leo!), but I also love Fall for its holiday festivities. Two of my favorite holidays are Halloween and Thanksgiving, and I’m one of those people who goes crazy for everything pumpkin! 

Getting into fall mentality, I created an easy make-ahead dish, which can be prepped days in advance, and grilled or pan fried in just a few minutes. I paired this dish with roasted root veggies and a fresh salad with Asian pears and goat cheese. The result: delicious, hearty, comforting and filling, not too mention less dishes in the sink! 

Ingredients: 

  • 6 lamb shoulder chops (about 3lbs) 

For the marinade: 

  • 3 Tblsp finely minced garlic 
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil 
  • Juice and zest of 1 medium sized lemon 
  • 2 tsp salt (plus more for seasoning) 
  • 1 tsp pepper 
  • 2 Tblsp fresh rosemary (finely minced) 
  • 2 Tblsp fresh sage (finely minced) 
  • 2 Tblsp fresh thyme 

Note: If you don’t have fresh herbs on hand, dried herbs will work just fine. 

Method

  1. Combine all ingredients for the marinade in a medium sized bowl
  2. For the lemon, use a citrus zester to zest the entire lemon in the bowl
  3. Once the lemon is zested, cut lemon in half and juice the lemon halves to combine with the marinade
  4. Use a whisk to ensure marinade is fully incorporated 
  5. Pour marinade into a gallon sized ziplock bag and place the lamb chops in the bag
  6. Close the zip lock bag and massage the marinade into the lamp chops until evenly distributed 
  7. Marinate at room temp for an hour or overnight (up to 2 days) 
  8. If meat is refrigerated over night, remove from fridge and allow meat to adjust to room temp (about an hour) before grilling
  9. Pre-heat a large grill pan for about 3 mins on medium high, and spray with your favorite no -stick spray
  10. Once your grill is heated, place the meat on the grill (do not over crowd), and cook chops in batches
  11. Grill chops for about 3-4 mins per side to get the grill marks 
  12. Reduce the temp to medium heat and cover chops on the grill with foil or a lid to ensure meat is cooked in the middle for another 3-4 mins depending on your desired level of meat rareness 
  13. Repeat processs with remaining chops, and squeeze fresh lemon and sprinkle a pinch of salt on each chop before serving 
  14. Get your fork and knife ready! 
  15. Feast.

Sweet Potato Hash 


Guys, I must say – this is the best batch of sweet potato hash I’ve ever made. So good, it’s worth sharing with the rest of the world! Since the ever so popular avocado toast is not Paleo, this dish is a good substitute. It’s a canvas for whatever you’re feelin’that morning, whether it be slow cooked scrambled eggs, sunny side up, or poached eggs, top it with avocado and your meat of choice. My go-to is always bacon. Get your brunch on!

Sweet Potato Hash

Makes 10 – 4″ hash browns

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sized sweet potatoes 
  • 5 Tblsp Otto’s Cassava Flour 
  • 3 tsp sea salt 
  • 2 tsp ground pepper 
  • 2 tsp garlic powder 
  • 1 tsp paprika 
  • 1 tsp fresh chives minced 
  • 1 tsp dried thyme 
  • 1 egg 
  • 1/4 cup almond milk 

Instructions

  1. Rinse and clean sweet potatoes under warm water, and dry with a paper towel 
  2. Use a cheese grater or a food processor to grate sweet potatoes (keep the skin on). I use a Cuisine Art food processor with the grater, which makes it quick and easy to grate the sweet potatoes 
  3. Pour potatoes into a medium sized bowl and add all the dry ingredients
  4. Toss the potatoes and dry ingredients together with your hands or a large spoon until combined
  5. In a small bowl, mix egg and milk 
  6. Pour into potato mixture and mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed 
  7. Fill a 1-cup measuring cup with potato mixture, and use both hands to flatten mixture into a 4″circle and place on a plate or cutting board until you’re ready to fry.  Repeat process for the next 9 sweet potato hash browns.
  8. Heat a non-stick skillet on medium high, and pour olive oil or avocado oil into heated pan
  9. Place hash browns into skillet and fry each side until golden brown, (approximately 3-4 minutes per side)
  10. Use a spatula to flip hash brown over in the skillet 
  11. Top the hash browns off with eggs, bacon or sausage, and avocados (maybe some fresh diced tomatoes?!) 
  12. Indulge with your loved ones. 

Plantain Waffles


In case you didn’t already know, brunch is my favorite meal. Like, I could replace every meal with all things brunch! Thankfully there are several waffle recipes available in the Paleo blogsphere. This recipe in particular was inspired and adapted by The Paleo Mom, and the original recipe can be found here. This is now my go to recipe when I’m craving for pancakes or waffles, and both Paleo and non-Paleo family and friends approve! The texture has a light crunch on the outside and is moist and fluffy on the inside. We usually slather Nutiva’s coconut butter and dress the waffles with Big Tree’s coconut blossom nectar and fresh berries. I hope this becomes your go to waffle (or pancake) recipe too! Happy cooking! 

Plantain Waffles 

Makes about 6 square waffles

(Adapted from http://www.thepaleomom.com

Ingredients

  • 2 large green plantains 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 3/4 cup organic coconut milk (full fat) 
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract (alcohol free)
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin coconut oil 
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda 
  • 2 Tbs coconut palm sugar 
  • Coconut or avocado oil cooking spray for waffle machine 

Method

  1. Pre-heat the waffle maker; I have an All-clad waffle machine and set it to level 5. 
  2. In a blender or food processor, add peeled plantains, eggs, and coconut milk. Blend until a smoothie consistency is formed. 
  3. Add remaining ingredients into blender, and blend for an additional 2-3 minutes, until all ingredients are combined, ensuring an even consistency. 
  4. Spray waffle maker with coconut or avocado oil.
  5. Pour batter into the pre-heated waffle maker, and cook for approximately 3-5 minutes, or according to your waffle maker’s instructions. Waffles should be cooked until golden brown. 
  6. Repeat steps 4-5 for remaining batter. 

Try not to eat all the waffles while your waiting for the next batch to cook! 

Pizza with Kale Pesto, Bacon, Tomatoes, and 3-Cheese Blend

And my 3-day weekend starts now! To celebrate, I decided to make a Paleo friendly pizza with simple, fresh, and delicious ingredients. If you want to wow your family and friends for dinner, I highly recommend making this pizza. The pizza crust turned out crispy on the edges, and soft yet chewy on the inside. Fresh, organic ingredients definitely make or break this dish. Go ahead, don’t be scared – try it! I promise this recipe won’t disappoint.

Pizza with Kale Pesto, Bacon, Tomatoes, and 3-Cheese Blend

(Pizza crust adapted from Juli Bauer’s Paleo Cook Book)

Ingredients

For the crust: 

  • 1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour + 1 tbsp for sprinkling on cookie sheet
  • 1 1/2 cups tapioca starch/flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 cup coconut milk (full fat)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

For the kale pesto: 

  • 6 cups organic baby kale
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground pepper

For the pizza toppings: 

  • 2 medium sized organic tomatoes
  • 10 slices bacon chopped into 1/4″ slices
  • 1 cup grated cheese of your choice – I used grated blend of Gruyere, Parmesan, and Mozzerella
  • 2 sprigs green onions chopped 

Instructions 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Combine wet ingredients in a medium sized bowl, and whisk until combined.
  3. In a separate bowl combine dry ingredients and whisk until fully mixed.
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients, and mix until fully combined. The batter consistency will be similar to pancake batter – don’t fret.
  5. Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle the almond flour on to the surface of the parchment paper. This will prevent dough from sticking.
  6. Pour the pizza dough directly in the middle of the cookie sheet and allow the batter to spread out evenly into a 12-14″ circle. Spread the batter to ensure 1/2″ thickness.
  7. Place cookie sheet in the middle rack of the oven and bake for about 14-16 minutes until crust is golden brown. The dough will raise slightly.
  8. When the pizza crust is ready, pull the cookie sheet out of the oven, and allow crust to cool for 5-10 minutes.
  9. Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees F
  10. While the pizza crust is cooling, fry bacon bits in a pan until golden brown and pour into a small bowl and set aside. Save the oil in a ramekin for another dish!
  11. Make the kale pesto combining all ingredients except olive oil into a food processor or blender. Slowly pour olive oil into the machine (already running) until all ingredients are combined.
  12. Use about 1/4- 1/2 cup of the kale pesto and spread evenly on the pizza crust.
  13. Sprinkle bacon bits on top of pesto
  14. Layer chopped tomatoes, sprinkle with 1 to 1/2 cups of shredded cheese of your choice and top with chopped green onions. Add whatever additional ingredients your feelin’ at the moment.
  15. Place cookie sheet back into middle oven and rack and bake for 12-15 minutes until cheese is nice and bubbly and golden brown.
  16. Slice and serve hot out of the oven!

Vietnamese Grilled Pork (Bún Thịt Nướng)

File_000Vietnamese grilled pork is an easy week night meal and can be prepped a day or 2 in advance. This recipe calls for pork loin, which cooks quickly and is even easier to make using the oven and broiler. This was a perfect summer dinner – light, clean, crisp and with flavor packed ingredients. The grilled pork was paired with garlic fried caulirice, sauteed baby bok choy, chopped carrots, cucumbers, and jicama.

Vietnamese Grilled Pork

Serves 4 with leftovers. 

Ingredients
  • 4 pounds pork loin, cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1 medium onion, coursely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar (or honey)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons coconut or liquid aminos (I use Bragg’s)
  • 2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Zest of 2 limes
  • Juice of 3 limes
Garnish
  • 1/2 jicama, sliced into match sticks
  • 1/2 cucumber, sliced into half moons
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced into match sticks
  • 2 stalks of green onions, minced
Dipping Sauce
  • 6 tbsp. water
  • 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar (or honey)
  • 6 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tbsp. fish sauce (add more to taste)
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp chili sauce (optional)

Insructions

  1. Cut pork loin into 1″ cubes and place into a gallon sized zip lock bag
  2. Place the remaining ingredients in a blender and mix until combined
  3. Pour marinade into zip lock bag, seal, and massage ingredients into the pork
  4. Refrigerate pork marinade for at least 1 hour or over night if possible
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F
  6. Remove pork from refrigerator, and allow pork to adjust to room temperature (about 30-60 mins)
  7. Using a large pan or cookie sheet, line with foil, and spray surface with non-stick spray
  8. Place pork on cookie sheet (use tongs) and discard marinade.
  9. Bake pork for 10 – 15 mins, then broil on medium-high heat for 5 minutes, remove once pork is golden brown – do not overcook.
  10. Cut and assemble veggies for garnish
  11. For dipping sauce, combine all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined
  12. Assemble grilled pork on top of a bed of lettuce, caulirice, or starch of your choice and garnish with veggies.
  13. Serve dipping sauce alongside the pork dish.
  14. Grub!

Buttery Vanilla Donuts with Chocolate Ganache

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I’m a donut chaser. I miss eating regular donuts, and was determined to create a paleo version. Thankfully, I found a donut recipe from Juli Bauer’s Paleo Cookbook and altered a few ingredients. I had one with coffee and bacon this morning! I hope you enjoy these moist, delicious, and satisfying donuts.

Buttery Vanilla Donuts with Chocolate Ganache 

(Adapted from Juli Bauer’s Paleo Cookbook)

Makes 8 – 10 donuts

Ingredients: 

For the donuts:

  • 6 Tablespoons grass fed butter or coconut butter (melted and cooled)
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 coconut sugar (or any unrefined sugar of your choice)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 coconut flour (I use Nutiva coconut flour)
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt

For the chocolate ganache:

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch of salt

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350F degrees
  • Pre-coat the donut pan with non-stick spray (I use the Wilton 6-cavity donut pan)
  • Mix wet ingredients in a small bowl
  • Mix dry ingredients in a separate medium sized bowl
  • Combined the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients bowl and mix until thoroughly combined
  • Pour batter into a medium sized piping bag or gallon sized ziplock bag, and cut the corner edge to pipe the batter into the donut pan. Do not over fill the pans.
  • Place the donut pan on a large cookie sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes in the oven, and test with a clean toothpick.
  • Cool donuts on a cooling rack for 5-10 minutes.
  • For the ganache, add 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips into a microwave safe bowl.
  • Heat chocolate chips in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring mixture after each interval – I did this 3 times until the chips were semi-melted.
  • Add the heavy whipping cream to the bowl and mix to combine.
  • Heat the chocolate chips for another 30 seconds, and mix until chocolate and heavy cream are thoroughly combined. Do not over heat the chocolate!
  • Add vanilla extract and salt and mix until combined.

Assembly Instructions:

  • Dip each donut in the chocolate ganache bowl and allow the chocolate to set for 1-2 mins on a cooling rack.
  • Add toppings of your choice! I added slivered almonds and toasted coconut. Chopped bacon will work too!

Happy Saturday folks!

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