Paleo Recipes for Modern Day Cavemen

Archive for the category “Side dishes”

Sunday Sweets | Coconut and Pineapple Popsicles

Hi Cavemen Gourmet fans!  Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile, I just realized that my last post was the same week my husband and I found out we were expecting a little baby on the way. It’s been madness just getting our heads around the whole thing, but that’s no excuse and should mean more recipes for paleo parents and primal families from me. My goal for the rest of the year will be to come up with more fast, family friendly paleo recipes for you all and post more regularly (let’s see if that happens!). Here’s a simple four-ingredient recipe that’s tasty and reminds me of a summer day (and great for kids too!).

Coconut icecream

Ingredients
Makes 4 popsicles with Zoku Popsicle Maker
1 ripe banana
2 cups crushed pineapple
1 can coconut milk
1 cup coconut flakes

Directions
In a blender or mixer, place the coconut milk with the banana and mix thoroughly. Because I like bits of pineapple and coconut flakes, I wait until after those two are mixed before I add the coconut flakes and crushed pineapple, as to not liquify them too much. 

One all four ingredients are thoroughly mixed together, pour it in an ice cream mold of your choice (I happen to use the Zoku because it was a lovely gift but you can use any simple popsicle mold).  Keep frozen for several hours and ta-da! You’re ready to enjoy this pina colada popsicle!  I had some leftover mixture so I just put it in the fridge and it was great as a chilled, decadent pudding as well. Enjoy!

Roasted Mini Pumpkins

Thanks to my fans on Facebook. Cavemen Gourmet just reached over 1,000 fans!  I really appreciate all of the support and feedback that CG followers have given to me and I hope to provide more simple paleo recipes for you to enjoy.

This recipe came to me out of nowhere today. For weeks, we’ve had mini pumpkins in the house for decor and I was thinking of what I should do with them after Halloween. Typically, I just threw them away but then figured they were no different than other squash so perhaps I could roast them. And what do you know? They were fantastic! The star anise added some nice flavor and also looked like spiders so that could be a nice Halloween garnish! Easy like Sunday morning…

Roasted Mini Pumpkins by Cavemen Gourmet

Roasted Mini Pumpkins by Cavemen Gourmet

Ingredients
4 mini pumpkins
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
2 star anise (optional)
1 tablespoon coconut oil

Directions
Preheat over to 350 degrees.

Wipe your mini pumpkins with a clean wash cloth. Then with a sharp knife, VERY carefully cut the tops of the pumpkin off, about 1/3 of the way from the top so you can get to the seeds. (I find cutting butternut squash and pumpkin to be very dangerous so be careful of your fingers!) Then scoop out pumpkin seeds and fibers.

Brush the coconut oil on the pumpkins and sprinkle cinnamon and allspice on top. I placed star anise inside two of the pumpkins just for an added kick of flavor.  Put the tops back on the pumpkins and place on large baking pan.

Bake for 50-60 minutes or until pumpkins are tender.  Serve hot or warm!  Now that I know how easy it is to make this, I might go crazy with a few pumpkin recipes.  I’ll post a separate recipe for the pumpkin seeds – nothing goes to waste here. Just an FYI – I used two orange and two white pumpkins and found both to be flavorful, though the orange pumpkin ended up tasting sweeter. Enjoy!

Watermelon Juice with Basil and Lime

Hey CG fans! Sorry for the long delay in posting. We recently made the move from New York to San Francisco and it took us awhile to transition and settle in. But I can see why they call it the Best Coast! I imagine a lot more of my future paleo posts to include produce and vegetables because California has the most amazing supply. In New York, the idea of ‘Farm to Table” dining was getting popular, but being in the Bay Area, I realize now that it’s really just Californian cuisine!

Since this is my first post from the Golden State, I wanted to incorporate something from California. So I figured watermelon was the way to go! Fun fact: 75% of total watermelon production is from just five states: California, Florida, Texas, Georgia and Indiana. I thought I’d spicen it up some classic watermelon with some of my favorite flavors so I threw in basil and lime. It’s a great way to get some of your daily Vitamin C as well!

The combination of the sweet watermelon, the tart lime and the savory basil was a surprise hit with my husband. Just like this video – have your guests expect the unexpected with the combination of flavors. This is an easy and tasty paleo way to say cheers!

Ingredients
4 cups watermelon cubes
1/2 cup water
5 large basil leaves
2 limes

Directions
In a blender, add your watermelon, basil and the lime juice (I just squeezed them in by hand). My blender whipped this up in no time.  You can add more lime for tartness, more water to neutralize the sweetness or more basil for the kick. This recipe is really forgiving. Easy, breezy. Serve over ice or chilled. Enjoy!

Carrot & Thyme Soup

It’s winter and it’s cold outside (at least in New York City anyways). Cue up the tasty and hearty soup please.

This soup recipe is really simple and only has six main ingredients.  I went to a restaurant recently and saw a similar dish on a menu that used butter and cream so I just played around with a recipe to make a purely paleo version. Given that my husband loves spicy foods, I tried to heat things up (wink wink). Ok – I meant I added jalapenos. Feel free to take that out and the cauliflower as well. I’m just in a vegetable kick and wanted to add as much veggies as I could.

This is one of those recipes that I absolutely love, regardless of being paleo or not.   It is now my husband’s favorite new soup! I find it as soothing as the combination of Chris and Eddie singing Hunger Strike to me…

Ingredients
(Serves 6-8)

1lb medium sized carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch slices
1 large sweet onion, sliced
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
8 oz cauliflower florets
4 cups chicken broth
1 large jalapeno pepper, sliced (optional)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
1 teaspoon pepper (to taste)

Directions

1. In a heated saute pan coated with olive oil – saute the onions, cauliflower and carrots until onions are caramelized (about 15 minutes). Stir frequently.

2. Add the thyme and sliced jalapenos with the vegetables.  Mix together in saute pan.

3. Pour the sauteed vegetables in a large blender along with your chicken broth.   Puree until creamy and smooth texture.

4. Add salt and pepper to taste.

5. Serve and enjoy! I prefer this hot but my husband likes it cold. Let me know what you like better!

Dragon Fruit Salad

Chúc mừng năm mới! Gung Hay Fat Choy!  Or in other words – Happy New Year!! I might have already wished Cavemen Gourmet fans a happy new year but today is the start of the New Year for those following the lunar calendar. It is the Year of the Dragon, arguably the most auspicious sign in the zodiac! I thought it would be appropriate to include a simple and healthy fruit salad, with the key ingredient appropriately named Dragon Fruit.

A few of you might have seen this in the supermarket and wondered what the heck it was. Don’t be scared – although it is an odd fluorescent fuchsia color with bizarre green leaves poking out,  dragon fruit is really easy to eat and quite delicious.   It will remind you of a kiwi in terms of texture, but not taste as it does not have the extreme tartness.  Dragon fruit is really nutritious for you – they are high in antioxidants, a good source of Vitamin C, and are rich in minerals, especially calcium and phosphorus.  Hope the Dragon is good to you this year!

Ingredients
(Serves 2)
1 Dragon Fruit
8 cherries
1/2 tablespoon chopped mint leaves

Directions
Cut the Dragon Fruit lengthwise in half.  Scoop out the fruit into a medium sized bowl. (To make it pretty – you can create a tic tac toe pattern with the fruit before scooping out with a spoon to create the square shapes).

Next, de-seed your cherries and slice them into quarters. Last, mix your cherries and chopped mint with the dragon fruit. Mix thoroughly and place in fruit bowl. Alternatively, you can re-use the Dragon Fruit shell as a decorative piece.

Chill in refrigerator for 15-20 minutes (best served chilled). Serve and Enjoy! Easy Breezy just like the Dragon would have wanted…

 

Chocolate Covered Nuts with Sea Salt

Happy Halloween to my favorite cavemen!  Recently, my husband was craving something sweet and specifically – chocolate.  I didn’t have much time (or ingredients) but whipped up this really tasty paleo candy to satisfy his cravings.  It’s one of the most simple recipes ever! I’ll probably make a better batch and be more creative this winter once the weather gets worse, but this was a fun experiment that turned out really well.  I wouldn’t necessarily give this to the neighborhood kids on Halloween night, but it’s good for the primal trick or treaters!

Ingredients
3.5 oz Unsweetened Dark Chocolate
1 cup orange juice
2/3 cup honey
Course Sea Salt
5oz Nuts of your choice

Directions
In a small sauce pan, heat the orange juice on medium heat. As it starts to simmer, reduce heat to low and add the chocolate. It should take a few minutes for the chocolate to completely melt, but once it has, slowly pour in the honey while stirring the melted chocolate.

Once the honey, chocolate and orange juice are mixed thoroughly, give it a taste. (My husband has been paleo for a year and a half so I knew this combination would be good for him because he hasn’t had sweet things outside of fruit in a really long time! For others, it may still be too bitter and you can add more honey or orange juice here.)  Now the fun part!

Take the nuts of your choice (I used pecans and cashews because that’s all we had at home but next time will add macadamia nuts and almonds) and drop them in the chocolate.  Mix the nuts around until they are fully coated and then scoop each one out with a fork and place on parchment paper.  Sprinkle a tiny bit of sea salt on each nut – trust me it’s worth it. The salt is the best thing about this recipe and adds a surprising and savory aspect to make it feel like you’re eating real (paleo) candy!

Put in the refrigerator and let cool. Once the chocolate has hardened a bit in the refrigerator – gobble them up! Hope you enjoy this treat for Halloween.

 

 

 

Cucumber, Turkey and Avocado Roll

Greetings from London! I have been traveling a bit and am reminded daily of how hard it is to eat well while on the road. This easy recipe is a great snack for any roadtrips or flights (especially with those dreadful airline meals!).  As simple as this recipe is, you’ll love the amazing combination of texture and taste!

Ingredients
Serves 2
2 cucumbers
8oz sliced turkey breast
2 ripe avocado

Directions
First, peel your cucumbers. I like a tiny bit of skin on mine for the added texture but you can do however you prefer. Then cut your cucumber in half (not lengthwise!).  Next, with a sharp paring knife, make an initial indentation lengthwise and start cutting the core of the cucumber out, creating a hollow log shape out of the cucumber.

Next, core and slice your avocado in quarters.  Once that is done – simple layer the turkey in the cucumber and place the avocado in the turkey. Voila! You have yourself a fresh, paleo snack that’s refreshing and delicious! Feel free to add some basil or other herbs to add more flavors. I keep this simple because my husband loves the basic saltiness of the turkey next to the crunchy cucumber and the creamy avocado.

Cheerio!

Roasted Bone Marrow with Parsley Salad

My favorite culinary curmudgeon, Anthony Bourdain, doesn’t call roasted bone marrow “Butter of the Gods” for nothing. It is one of my absolute favorite dishes and incredibly simple to make at home (and much cheaper than getting at a restaurant!).  Bone marrow is rich in fat and protein and has a soft and gelatinous texture.  I wouldn’t recommend eating it morning, noon and night, given it’s fat content but I think it’s great on occasion – especially since most of the fat in marrow is monounsaturated fat (one of the good fats).  When you take your first warm and buttery bite, it’s a slice of heaven. Just like this acoustic version of My Hero from Dave Grohl. Is there anything more awesome? Very hard to beat…

Ingredients
Makes 2-3 servings
6 three-inch pieces of marrow (approximately 3-4 pounds)
1 bunch parsley leaves
6 oz cipolline onions
6 oz cherries
1 teaspoon lemon juice
course sea salt
pepper
extra virgin olive oil

Directions
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Line your baking pan with aluminum foil because the marrow and fat will leak out during the roast! Place the bones standing upright. Add the onions as well since they’ll be sweet like candy when they’re roasted. Place in oven and roast for 20 minutes. (That’s right – you don’t have to add/season/do anything to the bones!)

While the bones and onions are roasting, mix the parsley leaves with chopped cherries. (I know that Anthony Bourdain’s favorite meal includes parsley salad with capers but I didn’t have any when I was making this so I included cherries to add some tartness. It worked great but feel free to add capers instead.) Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and course sea salt and pepper to the salad.

After 20 minutes, your marrow should look softened and loose (shouldn’t be liquified or you’ve gone too long). Take the bones out and set up standing on a plate. Take your onions and chop up 3oz and add to your salad and mix. Set the remaining 3oz on your plate. 

These are a bit challenging to eat if you don’t have the right utensils so make sure you have a slender spoon (or chopsticks!) so you can scrape the buttery goodness out. Enjoy!

Mango Kiwi Fruit Salad

Happy One Year Anniversary to Cavemen Gourmet! Thank you for all of the support and positive comments. Hopefully I can make more time this year to post more delicious paleo recipes!

I recently came back from London on a work trip and was inspired to make this dish. After a heavy meal I had at a work dinner, I decided to get something light for dessert and opted for a mango kiwi tart. I was amazed that it was just a bowl of the fruits mixed up and surprised that the simplicity of the two could be so delicious.  Although it’s technically just fruit salad, this dish is an amazing combination of flavors and textures.  You can easily make this dish by sloppily chopping up kiwi and mango in 2 seconds. But something about dicing it ever so finely into tiny squares and the combination of sweet and sour makes this a perfect dessert ‘pudding’. The marriage of kiwi and mango flavors is surprisingly balanced and also provides a pudding-like texture after you mix the two thoroughly. Hopefully you enjoy it as much as I do!

 

Ingredients
Makes 3-4 servings
6 kiwis
2 mangoes

Directions
Peel both fruit with a sharp paring knife.  Cut each fruit into small cubes (think the size of tomatoes in salsa). Mix thoroughly and put in refrigerator before serving. Best served chilled….enjoy the taste of summer!

Note: this is also delicious if you add some coconut flakes or chips.  Reminds me of a tropical vacation!

Banana Nut Mini Muffins

The other day I was making my paleo blueberry muffins as a dessert for my husband. I didn’t bother looking at my recipe and just decided to wing it and bake from memory. Bad idea bears.  I ended up accidentally using 1 tablespoon of salt versus the teaspoon that the recipe required. Suffice today I made salt muffins with a side of blueberries.  But the good news was I quickly made another batch of muffins so I didn’t feel like a huge culinary disaster.  This recipe uses no salt because of the self-induced trauma I went through…

Ingredients
Makes 24 mini muffins
1/2 cup coconut flour
6 eggs
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup grapeseed oil
2/3 cup crushed walnuts (optional)
2 bananas
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, mix all ingredients together with  a whisk – do not add the bananas until you have a smooth batter. Once your mixture is creamy smooth without any lumps, add in your diced bananas and slowly mix.

Pour the batter into muffin tins (I only have mini-muffin pans but use whatever you want!). Bake in the oven for 25 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  My husband liked this better than the banana nut bread I made awhile back. I think it’s because of the bite size nature of these mini muffins. Great for a light snack between meals or a dessert.  Enjoy!

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