Paleo Chowing Part 2: Oven-Free Cooking

Gluten is my Bitch

gluten-free paleoI’m not sure if I have complained enough this week about my oven, and my laptop both crapping out. Oh, also, I think my 15-year-old dog is on the way out too. But hey, why not stick with a paleo diet when it offers you no cheese whatsoever?

All right, I did have nachos once this week. Once. And I felt horrible after, and I’m realizing that I feel a zillion times better if I stick to (at the least) a dairy-free, refined-sugar free and duh, gluten-free diet. I have added the occasional legume and even less occasional potato (in fact, I was planning on eating a baked potato the night my oven died but refused to debase the ‘tater by popping it in the microwave, so still, no white potatoes that are not on the approved paleo list) to my diet. Also, I’m still trying to figure out…

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Gluten-Free Whole 30 Business: So Far, So Full

Interesting read – Paleo woe.

Gluten is my Bitch

gluten-free whole30Here’s the thing I like about this Whole 30 situation. You’re really not going to get hungry. Yes, you will crave lemonade (which is weird, why am I craving lemonade?) and you’ll wish you could enjoy a gluten-free corn dog in the middle of the night,  and I will admit to wishing I had some dark chocolate with almonds to top off my dinner, but it’s not out of hunger. Because the idea is to get all of those proteins and veggies all up in you so you feel satisfied and full. If that truffle burger with cauliflower mash doesn’t fill you up? Well, I can’t help you.

gluten-free whole30I also made this, my fave tuna tartare situation, for lunch one day. I had a hard time finding sushi-grade tuna at the fish counter however, so I had to go to a sushi joint and ask them to slice up some…

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Week 2 on The Whole 30, Or, Why Am I Crying?

Intesting recipes for Paleo woe.

Gluten is my Bitch

Okay, not so much crying. But it has been a weird adjustment to this grain-free, legume-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, booze-free diet. I’ve found myself doing lots of “big picture” thinking and feeling very emotional. I feel like this must be a bad time to make any life altering decisions because right now I just keep thinking about quitting my job and starting an urban farm. Which is SO NOT ME. I’ve also started an internal war against cereal. I say internal, because so far it’s just me saying in my head, “Cereal. What is it good for? Absolutely nothing.” And then letting my kids eat Cheerios.

What I’m trying to say, is I think I’m getting a little punchy on The Whole 30. That, and super duper tired. In fact, I got home from work early on Friday, ran some errands, and promptly passed out around 4 p.m. That…

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Delicious homemade Pita bread

Delicious homemade Pita bread

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 2 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Yield: 8 pita rounds

Ingredients

1 cup hot water, but not boiling
2 teaspoons active dry or instant yeast
2 1/2 – 3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
Instructions

Mix the water and yeast together in the bowl of a stand mixer (a large bowl will also work if you do not have a mixer), and let sit for about five minutes until the yeast is dissolved. Add 2 1/2 cups of the flour (saving the last half cup for kneading), salt, and olive oil. If using a stand mixer attach the dough and need the dough on medium speed for 8 minutes, adding more flour until you have a smooth dough. If using your hands sprinkle a little of the extra flour onto your clean work surface and turn out the dough. Knead the dough for about 5-7 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. Add more flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to your hands or the work surface, but try to be sparing. It’s better to use too little flour than too much. If you get tired, stop and let the dough rest for a few minutes before finishing kneading.

Clean the bowl you used to mix the dough and run it with a little olive oil. Set the dough in the bowl and turn it until it’s coated with oil. Cover with a clean dishcloth or plastic wrap and let the dough rise until it’s doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

At this point, you can refrigerate the pita dough until it is needed. You can also bake one or two pitas at a time, saving the rest of the dough in the fridge. The dough will keep refrigerated for about a week.

Gently deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and gently flatten each piece into a thick disk. Using a floured rolling pin, roll one of the pieces into a circle 8-9 inches wide and about a quarter inch thick. Lift and turn the dough frequently as you roll to make sure the dough isn’t sticking to your counter. Sprinkle with a little extra flour if it starting to stick. If the dough starts to spring back, set it aside to rest for a few minutes, then continue rolling. Repeat with the other pieces of dough. (Once you get the hang of it you can be cooking one pita while rolling the next one out.)

Warm a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat (you want a hot pan) alternatively you can cook these on a hot BBQ. Drizzle a little oil in the pan (or brush on the grill) and wipe off the excess.Lay a rolled-out pita on the skillet and bake for 30 seconds, until you see bubbles starting to form. Flip and cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side, until large toasted spots appear on the underside. Flip again and cook another 1-2 minutes to toast the other side.

The pita should start to puff up during this time; if it doesn’t or if only small pockets form, try pressing the surface of the pita gently with a clean towel. Keep cooked pitas covered with a clean dishtowel while cooking any remaining pitas.

These are best eaten fresh, but will keep in a ziplock bag for a few days or in the freezer.

Gnudi – what?

As you may have guessed, I do spend excessive and potentially unhealthy amounts of time looking at food pictures. Yep, you could even say I have a problem. So for me to come across something new takes time. A lot of the same everywhere. Then one day last week I bumped into something called gnudi whilst trying to find something different to do with the excessive amounts of cheap and insanely delicious tomatoes that I have been buying at the moment.

Who? You say? What is this gnudi?

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They are in fact the easiest ricotta and spinach gnocchi with a funnier name. On closer inspection the delicious explaination for these dumplings was this – a nude ravioli. So we’re back at gnocchi.

gnudi sounds so fun though… I had to try them out for dinner… Oh I forgot to take pictures so I’m linking the original source here. Enjoy x

Original recipe and photo credit –
http://www.thefoodiephysician.com/2012/03/dining-with-doc-spinach-gnudi.html

Fragrant Broad Bean Dip

Must try next spring!

Bunny Kitchen

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I’ve been swimming in broad beans over the past few weeks as they come flowing in my weekly veg box. My love for broad beans came just last year when I tried my first freshly podded batch of young beans as opposed to dull, grey pre podded bags full from the supermarket. The difference was remarkable and they became a summer crop I looked forward to for the first time this year.

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My endless supply has made my salads more interesting, has given wonderful colour and texture to pasta dishes and added wonderful bulk to stews, but most importantly, they starred in this wonderful dip that was so unexpectedly delicious that I eagerly awaited the arrival of my next broad bean influx and had no issue with the idea of podding yet another bucket load.

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The dip is so simple, it can be whipped up in a matter of seconds…

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