(Also known as week two of Paleo.)
Due to the fact that my husband worked late four nights this past week, I was forced to cook by, and for, myself. I rose to the occasion and rocked out my first roasted chicken. My husband did not disappoint either with Paleo versions of two of our favorite dishes.
Some culinary highlights from last week:
–My motherf’n roasted chicken. As I mentioned above, this was a first for me. I took the guts out (fortunately, they were already bagged up for me), shoved a half-onion and a few garlic cloves up in there, and basted every twenty minutes. The husband said that I shouldn’t expect all chickens to turn out this well. I owe it all to the Savory Spice Shop. We got a kit of Colorado spices as a wedding gift (thanks Jacq!) and I swear that those spices help get me through the Paleo challenge by making everything taste better.
–Plantains. Sigh. Once I confirmed they were Paleo, I cooked them up in some coconut oil and longed for the Tropics. Plantains are really good, give me a bit of sweet and are currently the closest thing to a comfort food I have these days.
–Coconut cream. You read that right. Last challenge I was all about the coconut milk. After a trip to Pacific Ocean Marketplace, an Asian grocery store in Broomfield, I discovered my latest obsession. Coconut cream. And yes, it’s just as delicious as it sounds. Fluffier and fattier than coconut milk, coconut cream is the Holy Grail of Paleo desserts. Easily worth the trip back to the Asian grocery. And the weird smells you encounter while there.
–Paleo coleslaw. This stuff is super easy to make, good for at least two meals and just one of those classic side dishes. I use Lemonaise in my slaw and this last batch even received a compliment from a co-worker. Pictured above with one of my other most favorite Paleo meals: a burger topped with a fried egg, avocado and salsa verde. Oh my.
–Justin’s Nut Butter. I want to marry almond butter. And ever since the last Paleo challenge, I’ve been doing a little almond butter research, comparing and contrasting different brands. What I’ve discovered is that Justin’s Nut Butter really is better. (Duh.) It’s also more expensive. But since I have to enjoy the little treats during this challenge, a spoonful of almond butter is worth every penny.
–Chili verde con pollo. In other words, a chicken green chili stew. My husband scored big with this one, putting avocado and fresh cilantro on top. I didn’t miss the cheese, sour cream or tortillas. Much. And the best part is that we made a big batch and had enough for lunch the next day. Double score.
–Paleo quiche. You read that correctly. By laying prosciutto down in a basket-like weave around the bottom of a foil pie pan, adding sesame seeds and baking the whole thing for a bit, we effectively created a crust substitute. Then, he poured the egg, sausage and broccoli mixture on top and baked like a normal quiche. It worked, proving that you really don’t *need* crust.
(The cheating incident I refer to in the title involved a wood-burning pizza oven from Italy, good friends, threats of violence and perhaps a bit of peer pressure. Let’s leave it at that.)
To make Paleo matters worse, my partner in this challenge keeps sending me direct messages telling me how much weight he’s lost. With two cheats under my belt, I’m starting to feel a little like the weak link. So I’m publicly apologizing to Andrew and promising him that I’ll be better in the second half of the challenge.
(Although, in my defense, I didn’t have nearly the same kind of weight to lose as he did. See that? Right after the public apology, I publicly call him a porker. )
To sum up week two, as I’m apt to say around the office…fuck sugar.** Halfway there, kiddo. You can do it.
**Although a beer sounds really good.